Alfred Russel Wallace: Letters and Reminiscences, Vol. 1

Alfred Russel Wallace: Letters and Reminiscences, Vol. 1

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Alfred Russel Wallace: Letters and Reminiscences, Vol. 1 by Alfred Russel Wallace, Sir Marchant James

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1916

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Alfred Russel Wallace: Letters and Reminiscences, Vol. 1

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Book Excerpt

ch helped to relieve his periods of loneliness and inactivity, and of that quiet determination to pursue to the utmost limit every idea which impressed his mind as containing the germ of a wider and more comprehensive truth than had yet been generally recognised and accepted.

The innate reticence and shyness of manner which were noticeable all through his life covered a large-heartedness even in the most careful observation of facts, and produced a tolerant disposition towards his fellow-men even when he most disagreed with their views or dogmas. He was one of those of whom it may be truly said in hackneyed phrases that he was "born great," whilst destined to have "greatness thrust upon him" in the shape of honours which he received with hesitation.

From his autobiography we gather that his father, though dimly tracing his descent from the famous Wallace of Stirling, was born at Hanworth, in Middlesex, where there appears to have been a small colony of residents bearing the same name but occupying varie

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