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EDWARD ROWLAND SILL (1841-1887)

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Originally appearing in Volume V25, Page 107 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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EDWARD ROWLAND SILL (1841-1887), American poet and educationist, was born at Windsor, Connecticut, on the 29th of April 1841. He graduated at Yale in 1861, as class poet; engaged in business in California; entered the Harvard Divinity School in 1867, but soon left it for a position on the staff of the New York Evening Mail; and after teaching at Wadsworth and Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio (1868-1871), became principal of the Oak-land High School, California. He was professor of English literature at the university of California in 1894-1882. His health was failing, and he returned to Cuyahoga Falls in 1883. He devoted himself to literary work, abundant and largely anonymous, until his death in Cleveland, Ohio, on the 27th of February 1887. Much of his poetry was contributed to the Atlantic Monthly, the Century Magazine, and the Overland Monthly. Many of his graceful prose essays appeared in " The Contributors' Club," and others appeared in the main body of the Atlantic. Among his works are a translation of Rau's Mozart (1868); The Hermitage and Other Poems (1868); The Venus of Milo and Other Poems (1883), a farewell tribute to his California friends; Poems (1887); The Hermitage and Later Poems (1889); Hermione and Other Poems (1900); The Prose of Edward Rowland Sill (1900) ; Poems (1902). He was a modest and charming man, a graceful essayist, a sure critic. His contribution to American poetry is small but of fine quality. His best poems, such as The Venus of Milo, The Fool's Prayer and Opportunity, gave him a high place among the minor poets of America, which might have been higher but for his early death. See A Memorial volume privately printed by his friends in 1887; and " Biographical Sketch " in The Poetical Works of Edward Rowland Sill (Boston, 1906), edit; d by William Belmont Parker with Mrs Sill's assistance.
End of Article: EDWARD ROWLAND SILL (1841-1887)
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