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Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries: Volume 9, page 196, September 6-7, 1858

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Identifier: DX03571931

Title: Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries: Volume 9, page 196, September 6-7, 1858

Description: Regarding Henry Clapp's tales of William North.


anecdotes of [William] North, of his borrowings, improvidence and frequent talk of suicide. He got turned out of one boarding-house for not paying his rent, and though continued by [Henry] Clapp not to incur the same risk in his next abode, loafed for two weeks, accepted money from Clapp to pay up, didn’t do it but squandered the sum in a brothel and — got turned out again. He borrowed from everybody, never paying. Clapp made his acquaintance in England, knew him also in Paris. He would enter Clapp’s room, announce his intention to commit self murder, bid him good-bye and go off — Clapp not even caring to remonstrate, knowing nothing would come of it. Clapp says he always made preparations for being interrupted. At the time of the suicide they were not friends, Clapp having objected to North’s persisting in being third party to a friend’s dinners, and further offended him by what the narrator characterized as “a joke.” I must put it down, it is so suggestive of the men, the society the wretched suicide moved in. They were at a party. Said some one “I go against God!” “So do I!” chimes in North. ”Gentlemen,” replies Clapp, “that’s not fair — it’s two against one!” How much more terrible a tragedy is there in North’s real life and death, than in the wretched bosh into which he idealized himself in fiction.

7. Tuesday. Phonography, writing &c. Out in the afternoon, here and there, going as far as Chambers Street. Wrote a little at night. Out, for ale, at Honey’s with [William] Leslie and a friend of his. He, Leslie, is a little thrown out of evening employment — not having to write

Rights: NoC-US


Dates: 1858-09-06

Type(s): Diary

Maker/Creator: Gunn, Thomas Butler, 1826-1903

Subjects: Bohemians (New York artistic and literary movement)


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