"It is a very consoling fact that so many books about real lives - biographies, autobiographies, letters, etc. - give one such an impression of happiness, in spite of the tragedies they all contain. What could be more tragic than the main outlines of Lamb's or Cowper's lives? But as soon as you open the letters of either, and see what they were writing from day to day and what a relish they got out of it, you almost begin to envy them. Perhaps the tragedies of real life contain more consolation and fun and gusto than the comedies of literature?"