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The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 14, No. 83, September, 1864   By:

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The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 14, No. 83, September, 1864 provides a fascinating glimpse into American literature and culture during the mid-19th century. The collection of essays, short stories, and poetry offers readers a diverse range of topics, from politics and history to science and the arts.

One standout piece in this volume is an insightful essay on the ongoing Civil War, providing readers with a firsthand account of the conflict that shaped the United States. Additionally, the poetry featured in this issue showcases the talent and creativity of some of the period's most renowned poets.

Overall, The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 14, No. 83, September, 1864 is a valuable resource for anyone interested in understanding the social and intellectual climate of America during this pivotal time in history. The varied content and high quality of writing make this volume a compelling read for literature enthusiasts and historians alike.

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Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1864, by TICKNOR AND FIELDS, in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the District of Massachusetts.

Transcriber's Note: Minor typos have been corrected and footnotes moved to the end of the article.


An old English divine fancied that all the world might go mad and nobody know it. The conception suggests a query whether the standard of sanity, as of fashions and prices, be not a purely artificial one, an accident of convention, a law of society, an arbitrary institute, and therefore a possible mistake. A sage and a maniac each thinks the other mad. The decision is a matter of majorities. Should a whole community become insane, it would nevertheless vote itself wise; if the craze of Bedlam were uniform, its inmates could not distinguish it from a Pantheon; and though all human history seemed to the gods only as a continuous series of mediæval processions des sots et des ânes , yet the topsy turvy intellect of the world would ever worship folly in the name of wisdom. Arts and sciences, ideas and institutions, laws and learning would still abound, transmogrified to suit the reigning madness... Continue reading book >>

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