1829 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Rev. Thomas Fuller

Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Marginalia in Fuller, Church History, July 1829; in Coleridge on the Seventeenth Century (1955) 470.



Next to Shakespeare I am not certain whether Thomas Fuller, beyond all other writers, does not excite in me the sense and emotions of the Marvellous; the degree, in which any given faculty or combination of faculties is possessed and manifested so far surpassing what one would have thought possible in a single mind, as to give one's Admiration the flavor and quality of Wonder! Wit was the Stuff and Substance of Fuller's Intellect — it was the Element, the earthen base, the material which he worked in — and this very circumstance has defrauded him of his due praise for the practical wisdom of the Thoughts, for the beauty and variety of the Truths, he shaped the Stuff into. T. Fuller was incomparably the most sensible, the least prejudiced, great man of an Age that boasted a Galaxy of great men. He is a very voluminous writer, and yet in all his numerous Volumes on so many different subjects, it is scarcely too much to say, that you will hardly find a page in which some one sentence out of every three does not deserve to be quoted for itself, as motto or maxim, — God bless thee, dear Old Man!! May I meet with thee! — which is tantamount to — may I go to heaven!