Hyperion

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They would meet, like as not, at “Parker’s” in Boston, in a room looking out on City Hall. “Agassiz always sat at the head of the table by native right of his large good-fellowship and intense enjoyment of the scene,” his friend Sam Ward eventually recalled. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow generally sat at the other end, with Oliver Wendell Holmes on his right. Holmes preferred his windowlight over the shoulder. On around the table were James Russell Lowell, John Greenleaf Whittier, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Richard Henry Dana, Jr., Ebenezer Hoar, Benjamin Peirce, Charles Eliot Norton, and James co-working space almere Elliot Cabot, among others. Agassiz, with a glass of wine at his elbow, would sometimes conduct the conversation with two lighted cigars, one in each hand. Holmes said of him that he had “the laugh of a big giant.” Longfellow was relieved and pleased when Agassiz told him he liked the description of the glacier in “Hyperion.” Emerson in his journal described Agassiz as “a broad-featured unctuous man, fat and plenteous.” Sir Charles Lyell was invited, on his visits to America. United States Senator Charles Sumner was occasionally present as well. Agassiz was indifferent to him, because Sumner showed too much interest in politics. The group was co-working space amsterdam known as Agassiz’s Club, more officially as the Saturday Club. One summer, when the club went off to the Adirondacks on a camping trip, Longfellow refused to go, because Emerson was taking a gun.

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