To Homer: “It is because thou art so great, and men so little, that they misdoubt thee… They believe not that one human soul has known every art, and all the thoughts of women as of men, all lives of beasts on hill and plain, all the innocence of childhood, and its beautiful ways, all the delight of battle, the dread of ambush, the slow agony of siege, the storms and the calms of the sea. In thy soul, as in the soul of Zeus, is the whole world mirrored.”
To Edgar Allan Poe: “But to discuss your few and elaborate poems is a waste of time, so completely does your own brief definition of poetry, ‘the rhythmic creation of the beautiful,’ exhaust your theory, and so perfectly is the theory illustrated by the poems.”
If you’d like more Andrew Lang, there is an excellent piece on his life and work in The Scotsman. You can also check out our post on his bibliophilic gem, Books and Bookmen (1886). His crowning achievement remains the twelve colour fairy books (published 1889–1910) in which he and his wife, Nora Lang, collected, edited and translated 437 fairy stories from across Europe.