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The Weblog at The View from the Core - Wed. 06/16/04 07:38:03 AM
   
         
         
   

Apologia Pro Vita Sua

A monumental anniversary.

One hundred and forty years ago today — Thursday, June 16, 1864 — the last serial portion of one of the great literary phenomena of the 19th century was published: the Appendix to John Henry Newman's monumental Apologia Pro Vita Sua.

Indeed, the last portion of the Apologia proper had been published two weeks earlier, June 2, 1864, the writing of it having been completed on May 26. Fortunately, the Appendix was a key portion of the original version, without which we would have been deprived of one of the most cutting sentences in all of "controversial" literature:

In proceeding now, according to the engagement with which I entered upon my undertaking, to examine in detail the Pamphlet which has been written against me, I am very sorry to be obliged to say, that it is as slovenly and random and futile in its definite charges, as it is iniquitous in its method of disputation.

Newman's biographer Wilfrid Ward tells the story of the writing of the opus magnus. And The Cambridge History of English and American Literature (1907–1921) has a brief appreciation of Apologia.

The Encyclopedia Britannica (1911) has an article on Newman, as does the Catholic Encyclopedia (1911).

Here are two photographs of Newman at about the time of writing Apologia:

John Henry Newman / Portraits / Circa 1863 John Henry Newman / Portraits / Circa 1863

P.S. Gerard notes another Newman literary anniversary today. And thanks to Nârwen for the notice.

Lane Core Jr. CIW P — Wed. 06/16/04 07:38:03 AM
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Cor ad cor loquitur J. H. Newman — “Heart speaks to heart”