“The bread eaten in tears of which Goethe speaks the sleepless nights of sorrow are required for a clear vision of the celestial powers. Fortunately the same qualities that occasion the conflict insure the victory also. From days of gloom and depression such as we have been considering no doubt came precious results in the way of sympathy, self restraint, and that sober reliance on the final triumph of good over evil, peculiar to those who have been greatly tried but not destroyed. The late but splendid maturity of Lincoln's mind and character dates from this time and although he grew in strength and knowledge to the end from this year, we observe a steadiness and sobriety of thought and purpose as discernible in his life as in his style. He was like a blade forged in fire and tempered in the ice brook ready for battle whenever his battle might come.”
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