e among his contemporaries, we can venture to say of him that he was not only of the school, but of the lineage, of Wordsworth. His own judgment on his place among the modern poets was thus given in a letter of 1869: "My poems represent, on the whole, the main movement of mind of the last quarter of a century, and thus they will probably have their day as people become conscious to themselves of what that movement of mind is, and interested in the literary productions which reflect it. It might be fairly urged that I have less poetic sentiment than Tennyson, and less intellectual vigour and abundance than Browning. Yet because I have more perhaps of a fusion of the two than either of them, and have more regularly applied that fusion to the main line of modern development, I am likely enough to have my turn, as they have had theirs."
When we come to consider him as a prose-writer, cautions and qualifications are much less necessary. Whatever may be thought of the substance of his writings, it surely mus