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NEW YORK :
THE LEONARD SCOTT PUBLICATION CO.,

231 BROADWAY.

Publishers of

NINETEENTH CENTURY, CONTEMPORARY REVIEW, WESTMINSTER REVIEW,
FORTNIGHTLY REVIEW, BLACKWOOD'S MAGAZINE, SHAKESPEARIANA,

QUARTERLY AND EDINBURGH REVIEWS, SCOTTISH REVIEW.

1891.

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IF Mrs Oliphant had ventured therewith. We could never reduce to portray in one of her novels his mind, as it seems, to its lowest such a career as that which she terms, and thus get at the ultimate has described in her Memoir of facts which formed the basis of his Laurence Oliphant, she would inner life. A puzzle and a probdoubtless have had some difficulty lem while he lived, a mystery in replying to critical objections as scarcely less intense, even when to probabilities overstepped, unities his life has passed through the outraged, and ideals pushed to ordeal of strict scrutiny and study, absurdity. And, in good sooth, must yet continue to envelop his nothing but the constant assurance memory. that we have along with us the It is no blame to Mrs Oliphant vouchers of authenticated truth, that she has not solved the insolenables us to read this record as uble. She has brought qualificaone of fact and not of imagination. tions to bear upon her work which To those even who knew him best, no contemporary writer is posLaurence Oliphant's life presented sessed of. Her Life of Edward features that were strange and Irving' proved how adapted she inexplicable; and now that the was to trace with sympathetic veil which covered it has been skill eccentric genius in all its raised, it will still appear scarcely phases of health and disease; and less singular and unintelligible. to some extent the life of LauIn Oliphant's case the difficulty is, rence Oliphant suggests parallel and was, to refer him to any re- lines of inquiry. Of her knowledge cognised human standard, and to of human nature and firm grasp of get at his gauge by comparison the human mind, the number and

Memoir of the Life of Laurence Oliphant, and of Alice Oliphant, his Wife. By Margaret Oliphant W. Oliphant. Fourth Edition. In two volumes. William Blackwood & Sons, Edinburgh and London. 1891,

VOL. CL.-NO. DCCCCIX.

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