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from certain materials in his possession which he has very kindly allowed me to make use of, I have drawn by far the greater part of the biographical material embodied in the Introduction. M. Scherer has also given me help and advice through the whole process of translation—advice which his scholarly knowledge of English has made especially worth having.
In the translation of the more technical philosophical passages I have been greatly helped by another friend, Mr. Bernard Bosanquet, Fellow of University College, Oxford, the translator of Lotze, of whose care and pains in the matter I cherish a grateful remembrance.
But with all the help that has been so freely given me, not only by these friends but by others, I confide the little book to the public with many a misgiving ! May it at least win a few more friends and readers here and there for one who lived alone, and died sadly persuaded that his life had been a barren mistake; whereas, all the while-such is the irony of thingshe had been in reality working out the mission assigned him in the spiritual economy, and faithfully obeying the secret mandate which had impressed itself upon his youthful consciousness :- Let the living live; and you, gather together your thoughts, leave behind you a legacy of feeling and ideas; you will be most useful so.'
MARY A. WARD.
It was in the last days of December 1882 that the first volume of Henri Frédéric Amiel's Journal Intime was published at Geneva. The book, of which the general literary world knew nothing prior to its appearance, contained a long and remarkable Introduction from the pen of M. Edmond Scherer, the well-known French critic, who had been for many years one of Amiel's most valued friends, and it was prefaced also by a little Avertissement, in which the 'Editors'— that is to say, the Genevese friends to whom the care and publication of the Journal had been in the first instance entrusted-described in a few reserved and sober words the genesis and objects of the publication. Some thousands of sheets of Journal, covering a period of more than thirty years, had come into the hands of Amiel's literary heirs. They were written,' said the Avertissement, 'with several ends in view. Amiel recorded in them his various occupations, and the incidents of each day. He preserved in them his psychological observations, and the impressions produced on him by books. But his Journal was, above all, the confidant of his most private and intimate thoughts; a means whereby the thinker became conscious of his own inner life; a safe shelter wherein his questionings of fate and the future, the voice of grief, of self-examination and confession, the soul's cry for inward peace, might make
themselves freely heard. . . . In the directions concerning his papers which he left behind him, Amiel expressed the wish that his literary executors should publish those parts of the Journal which might seem to them to possess either interest as thought or value as experience. The publication of this volume is the fulfilment of this desire.—The reader will find in it, not a volume of Memoirs, but the confidences of a solitary thinker, the meditations of a philosopher for whom the things of the soul were the sovereign realities of existence.'
Thus modestly announced, the little volume made its quiet début. It contained nothing, or almost nothing, of ordinary biographical material. M. Scherer's Introduction supplied such facts as were absolutely necessary to the understanding of Amiel's intellectual history, but nothing
Everything of a local or private character that could be excluded was excluded. The object of the Editors in their choice of passages for publication was declared to be simply the reproduction of the moral and intellectual physiognomy of their friend,' while M. Scherer expressly disclaimed any biographical intentions, and limited his Introduction as far as possible to 'a study of the character and thought of Amiel.' The contents of the volume, then, were purely literary and philosophical ; its prevailing tone was a tone of introspection, and the public which can admit the claims and overlook the inherent defects of introspective literature has always been a small
The writer of the Journal had been during his lifetime wholly unknown to the general European public. In Geneva itself he had been commonly regarded as a man who had signally disappointed the hopes and expectations of his friends, whose reserve and indecision of character had in many respects spoilt his life, and alienated the society around him; while his professorial lectures were
generally pronounced dry and unattractive, and the few volumes of poems which represented almost his only contributions to literature had nowhere met with any real cordiality of reception. Those concerned, therefore, in the publication of the first volume of the Journal can hardly have had much expectation of a wide success. Geneva is not a favourable starting-point for a French book, and it may well have seemed that not even the support of M. Scherer's name would be likely to carry the volume beyond a small local circle.
But 'wisdom is justified of her children !' It is now nearly three years since the first volume of the Journal Intime appeared; the impression made by it was deepened and extended by the publication of the second volume in 1884; and it is now not too much to say that this remarkable record of a life has made its way to what promises to be a permanent place in literature. Among those who think and read it is beginning to be generally recognised that another book has been added to the books which live —not to those, perhaps, which live in the public view, much discussed, much praised, the objects of feeling and of struggle, but to those in which a germ of permanent life has been deposited silently, almost secretly, which compel no homage and excite no rivalry, and which owe the place that the world half-unconsciously yields to them to nothing but that indestructible sympathy of man with man, that eternal answering of feeling to feeling, which is one of the great principles, perhaps the greatest principle, at the root of literature. M. Scherer naturally was the first among the recognised guides of opinion to attempt the placing of his friend's Journal. "The man who, during his lifetime, was incapable of giving us any deliberate or conscious work worthy of his powers, has now left us, after his death, a book which will not die. For the secret of