National Endowment of the Arts - The Big Read
The Poetry of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

The Poetry of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Nationality is a good thing to a certain extent, but universality is better. All that is best in the great poets of all countries is not what is national in them, but what is universal.


Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, c. 1855 (Photo courtesy the Longfellow National Historic Site)

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow was not only a major American poet, he was also one of the most influential figures in our national cultural history. In unforgettable poetic language that appealed to millions of readers across all classes, he helped create many of the songs, stories, characters, and images by which the young United States knew itself.

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