In 1819, she was married to Charles Sigourney, Esq., a leading merchant of Hartford, and a gentleman of education and literary taste. Henceforth her career was to be that of an author. The true interests of her own sex and the good of the rising generation stimulated her efforts in such works as Letters to Pupils; Letters Young Ladies; Whisper to a Bride; and Letters to Mothers. The guidance of the unfolding mind, impressed on her as it was, night and day, by the assiduous home-culture of her own children, called forth the Child's Book ; Girl's Book; Boy's Book; How to be Happy; and a variety of other juvenile works, which have been deservedly popular.

A conviction of the importance of temperance suggested Water-Drops; of the blessings of peace, Olive-Leaves. Scenes in my Native Land portray some of the attractions of the country that she loves; and Pleasant Memories of Pleasant Lands give us life-pictures of a tour in Europe. Those "who go down to the sea in ships" find a companion in her Sea and Sailor; the forgotten red man is remembered in Pocahontas; the harp of comfort for mourners is hung upon the Weeping Willow; while the young and blooming may hear her Voice of Flowers among the lilies of the field. Sayings of the Little Ones, and Poems for their Mothers, express her sympathies for the helpless stranger just entering life; Past Meridian, for the wearied pilgrim trembling at the gates of the west; while Lucy Howard's Journal shows the influence of a right home-training on the duties and destinies of woman. Since she entered the field of authorship, between forty and fifty volumes, varying in size, have emanated from her pen; and she yet continues, with unflagging industry, her intellectual labors, enjoying, with unimpaired powers, that happiness of existence which sometimes brightens with age. Every thing that she has written has been pure and elevating in its whole tone and influence: other writers have had more learning, more genius, more power, but none have employed their talents for a higher end,-to make the world wiser, happier, holier. An accomplished critic3 has remarked of her poems that "they express, with great purity and evident sincerity, the tender affections which are so natural to the female heart, and the lofty aspirations after a higher and better state of being, which constitute the truly ennobling and elevating principle in art as well as nature. Love and religion are the unvarying elements

This was quite favorably noticed in the very first number of the "North American Review," May, 1815. Little did she then dream that so long a literary life was before her, a life of pure beneficence,-and that forty-two years after, the same review would notice her forty-second published work (Past Meridian) in still warmer terms of praise.

2 "Mrs. Sigourney has never before written so wisely, so usefully, so beautifully, as in this volume. In saying so, we yield to none in our high appreciation of her previous literary merit; but, unless we greatly mistake, this is one of the comparatively few books of our day which will be read with glistening eyes and glowing heart, when all who now read it will have gone to their graves. It is written by her in the character of one who has passed the meridian of life, and addresses itself to sensations and experiences which all whose faces are turned westward can understand, and feel with her. It is devotion, philosophy, and poetry, so intertwined that each is enriched and adorned by the association. Above all, it blends with the serene sunset of a well-spent life the young morning beams of the never-setting day."-North American Review, January, 1857.

3 Alexander H. Everett.

of her song. If her power of expression was equal to the purity and elevation of her habits of thought and feeling, she would be a female Milton or a Christian Pindar."


Deal gently, thou, whose hand hath won
The young bird from its nest away,
Where, careless, 'neath a vernal sun,
She gayly caroll'd, day by day;
The haunt is lone, the heart must grieve,
From whence her timid wing doth soar,
They pensive list at hush of eve,

Yet hear her gushing song no more.

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Deal gently, thou, when, far away,

'Mid stranger scenes her foot shall rove,
Nor let thy tender care decay,—

The soul of woman lives in love:
And shouldst thou, wondering, mark a tear,
Unconscious, from her eyelids break,

Be pitiful, and soothe the fear

That man's strong heart may ne'er partake.

A mother yields her gem to thee,

On thy true breast to sparkle rare,
She places 'neath thy household tree
The idol of her fondest care;
And by thy trust to be forgiven

When judgment wakes in terror wild,
By all thy treasured hopes of heaven,
Deal gently with the widow's child.


Flow on forever, in thy glorious robe
Of terror and of beauty. Yes, flow on,
Unfathom'd and resistless. God hath set
His rainbow on thy forehead, and the cloud
Mantled around thy feet.-And he doth give
Thy voice of thunder power to speak of him
Eternally,-bidding the lip of man

Keep silence, and upon thy rocky altar pour
Incense of awe-struck praise.

And who can dare

To lift the insect trump of earthly hope,
Or love, or sorrow, 'mid the peal sublime
Of thy tremendous hymn?-Even Ocean shrinks
Back from thy brotherhood, and his wild waves
Retire abash'd.-For he doth sometimes seem
To sleep like a spent laborer, and recall
His wearied billows from their vexing play,
And lull them to a cradle calm: but thou,
With everlasting, undecaying tide,
Doth rest not night or day.

The morning stars, When first they sang o'er young creation's birth, Heard thy deep anthem,-and those wrecking fires That wait the archangel's signal to dissolve The solid earth, shall find Jehovah's name Graven, as with a thousand diamond spears, On thine unfathom'd page.-Each leafy bough That lifts itself within thy proud domain, Doth gather greenness from thy living spray, And tremble at the baptism.-Lo! yon birds Do venture boldly near, bathing their wing Amid thy foam and mist.-'Tis meet for them To touch thy garment's hem,- -or lightly stir The snowy leaflets of thy vapor wreath,Who sport unharm'd upon the fleecy cloud, And listen at the echoing gate of heaven, Without reproof.-But as for us, it seems Scarce lawful with our broken tones to speak Familiarly of thee.-Methinks, to tint Thy glorious features with our pencil's point, Or woo thee to the tablet of a song, Were profanation.

Thou dost make the soul
A wondering witness of thy majesty;
And while it rushes with delirious joy
To tread thy vestibule, dost chain its step,
And check its rapture with the humbling view
Of its own nothingness, bidding it stand
In the dread presence of the Invisible,
As if to answer to its God through thee.


A butterfly bask'd on a baby's grave,
Where a lily had chanced to grow:
"Why art thou here, with thy gaudy dye,
When she of the blue and sparkling eye

Must sleep in the churchyard low?"

Then it lightly soar'd through the sunny air,
And spoke from its shining track:

"I was a worm till I won my wings, And she whom thou mourn'st, like a seraph sings: Wouldst thou call the blest one back?"


Death found strange beauty on that polish'd brow, There was a tint of rose

And dash'd it out.

On cheek and lip. He touch'd the veins with ice,
And the rose faded. Forth from those blue eyes
There spake a wishful tenderness, a doubt
Whether to grieve or sleep, which innocence
Alone may wear. With ruthless haste he bound
The silken fringes of those curtaining lids
Forever. There had been a murmuring sound
With which the babe would claim its mother's ear,
Charming her even to tears. The spoiler set
The seal of silence. But there beam'd a smile,
So fix'd, so holy, from that cherub brow,
Death gazed, and left it-there. He dared not steal
The signet-ring of Heaven.


Meek dwellers 'mid yon terror-stricken cliffs!
With brows so pure, and incense-breathing lips,
Whence are ye? Did some white-wing'd messenger
On mercy's missions trust your timid germ
To the cold cradle of eternal snows?
Or, breathing on the callous icicles,
Bid them with tear-drops nurse ye?-
-Tree nor shrub
Dare that drear atmosphere; no polar pine
Uprears a veteran front; yet there ye stand,
Leaning your cheeks against the thick-ribb'd ice,
And looking up with brilliant eyes to Him
Who bids you bloom unblanch'd amid the waste
Of desolation. Man, who, panting, toils
O'er slippery steeps, or, trembling, treads the verge
Of yawning gulfs, o'er which the headlong plunge
Is to eternity, looks shuddering up,

And marks ye in your placid loveliness,-
Fearless, yet frail,-and, clasping his chill hands,
Blesses your pencill'd beauty. 'Mid the pomp
Of mountain-summits rushing on the sky,
And chaining the rapt soul in breathless awe,
He bows to bind you drooping to his breast,
Inhales your spirit from the frost-wing'd gale
And freer dreams of heaven.


Think'st thou the steed that restless roves
O'er rocks and mountains, fields and groves,

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