Charles Godfrey Leland (849 words)


Leland was born in Philadelphia to an old New England family. His father was a descendant of puritans who had arrived in America in the seventeenth century, while his mother’s family came from Rhode Island and later moved to Massachusetts. Schooled in Philadelphia, Charles spent summers in New England. A delicate youth, he was tall and rather weak and had a passion for literature, making him seem eccentric to his peers. He had a self-confessed tendency to idealism and romance, something he later attributed to an inflammation of the brain suffered at a young age. At 14, his father gave him a share in the Philadelphia library, and, around this time, the budding scholar chanced on the works of Carlyle, leading him to discover Spinoza, S…

Citation: Matthews, Jodie. "Charles Godfrey Leland". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 22 September 2008 [, accessed 21 June 2021.]

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