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Below are three recent stories from Today in Literature; just click through to read them in full. The introduction to all 500 stories in our archive is available to all through our list of authors, but you must be a Premium Subscriber in order to have access to the stories themselves.
 


July 25 Coleridge's "Great and Useless Genius"
  On this day in 1834 Samuel Taylor Coleridge died of heart disease at the age of sixty-one. In his last years, Coleridge continued to write in his Christian-philosophical-sage vein, and to enthrall by his conversation, but he was decades away from his great poems and literary criticism. Explanations of the "great and useless genius" included too little "resolution" and too much opium.
July 24 John Newton and "Amazing Grace"
  On this day in 1725 John Newton, the seaman-turned-preacher who wrote the hymn "Amazing Grace," was born. Newton's autobiography (An Authentic Narrative of some Interesting and Remarkable Particulars in the Life of John Newton, 1764) reveals an amazing life, and makes clear how repeatedly lost and found a wretch he was.
July 23 Thoreau, Taxes, Disobedience
  On this day in 1846, Henry David Thoreau was jailed for not paying his poll tax. Thoreau was almost exactly half-way through his Walden stay, and had come to Concord to pick up a shoe at the cobblers; this came to the attention of Sam Staples, tax collector and warden of the county jail, who was under orders from the town fathers to confront and, if necessary, confine this most contrary of its sons.

July 25, 2014
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