A professor of medicine at Harvard, Holmes gained considerable popularity through his witty, urbane essays and through his poems, many of which are still widely read. His unsuccessful fiction has recently been recognized as a significant contribution to the development of the American psychological novel. He also gained considerable renown as a physiologist.
Holmes was most sympathetic toward women. He felt that their treatment as the virtual property of their husbands was a profound injustice. He was happily married and relished the role of pater familias as well as the company of intellectual women whom he admired for their courage and for whom he felt a certain pity.
His son, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., became a famous Associate Justice of the Supreme Court.
Oliver Wendell Holmes (l809-l894) -- American essayist, scholar, and scientist who was one of the most highly regarded of 19th Century American poets
few words, from the woman we love, than too many: while she is silent, Nature
is working for her; while she talks, she is working for herself.|
sparingly soluble in the words of men; therefore they speak much of it; but one
syllable of woman’s speech can dissolve more of it [love] than a man’s heart
virtually summons every man to show cause why he doth not love her.
Fit the same
intellect to a man and it is a bow-string -- to a woman and it is a harp-string.
She is vibratile and resonant all over, so she stirs with slighter musical
tremblings of the air about her.
Women . . . need
faith to support them more than men do, for they have a great deal less to call
them out of themselves, and it comes easier to them, for their habitual state
of dependence teaches them to trust in others.
fascinates a man quite as often by what she overlooks as by what she sees.
Nature is in
earnest when she makes a woman.
who “calc’lates” is lost.
“I love you”
is all the secret that many, nay most women have to tell. When that is said,
they are like Chinacrackers on the morning of the fifth of July.
love first inspires the poet, and their praise is his best reward.
Man has his
will -- but woman has her way!