Excerpt from Richard Jefferies: A Study This lavish ardour of temperament, which regarded every form of asceticism as the vilest blasphemy, and in its insatiable yearning for a full, rich life, chafed against the niggardliness of time and destiny, must be kept well in view by all readers who would understand the meaning of Jefferies' career. It is furthermore a noticeable fact that all his memorable work was produced within a compass of ten years, of which no less than six were years of increasing illness and debility. The pathos of this contrast between the ideal and the actual, between triumphant aspira tion and crushing disappointment, has left a strong mark on his writings; he is at once confident and despondent - despondent in the failure of the present and the past, confident in the belief that the human race will hereafter realise the utmost dreams of his ambition.
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