Letter to Karl Marx, December 10, 1873

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Author(s) Friedrich Engels
Written 10 December 1873

Source: Marx Engels on Literature and Art, Moscow 1976;
Published in Marx-Engels Collected Works, Volume 44

December 10, 1873[edit source]

Dear Moor

Enclosed you will find three halves of five-pound notes; please acknowledge receipt at once so that the rest can follow.

Heavy fog since yesterday morning from which I just escaped for a short hour by taking a walk to the [Hampstead] Heath. Up there blue sky and warm sunshine, an island of brightness in a sea of fog. ...

That scamp Roderich Benedix has left a bad odour behind in the shape of a thick tome against “Shakespearomania.” He proved in it to a nicety that Shakespeare can’t hold a candle to our great poets, not even to those of modern times. Shakespeare is presumably to be hurled down from his pedestal only in order that fatty Benedix is hoisted on to it. There is more life and reality in the first act of the Merry Wives alone than in all German literature, and Launce with his dog Crab is alone worth more than all the German comedies put together. By way of contrast, Benedix with the weighty posterior will indulge in argumentations as serious as they are cheap over the unceremonious manner in which Shakespeare often makes short work of his dénouements and thereby cuts short the tedious twaddle, although in real life it is unavoidable. Let him have his way. ...

Yesterday received a geological map of the Rhine province. The superficial conjectures I made on the spot mostly confirmed.

Best regards to Tussy.