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Action in Fenimore Cooper's tales

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Action in Fenimore Cooper's tales
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Longino, Maranda Mazur Hunter, 1950-
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1987
Language:
English

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Bees ( jstor )
Cooperages ( jstor )
Death ( jstor )
Literary characters ( jstor )
Narratives ( jstor )
Seas ( jstor )
Ships ( jstor )
Tales ( jstor )
Travel ( jstor )
War ( jstor )

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University of Florida
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University of Florida
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All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
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AFB2387 ( ltuf )
0021589250 ( ALEPH )
18130775 ( OCLC )

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ACTION IN FENIMORE COOPER'S TALES


By

MARANDA MAZUR HUNTER LONGINO




















A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL
OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN
PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS
FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY



UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


1987



















































Copyright 1987


Maranda Mazur Hunter Longino
















TABLE OF CONTENTS


ABSTRACT

CHAPTERS

ONE




TWO


THREE










FOUR








FIVE




SIX


INTRODUCTION . .

Notes . . .

JOURNEY, QUEST, AND HUNT .

Journey . .
Quest . . .
Hunt . . .
Notes . . .


STALK, FIGHT, CHASE,
AND JOURNEY AGAIN. .

Journey. . .
Stalk . .
Fight . .
Chase . .
Notes . .

CHAINS AND LAYERS. .

Movement . .
Chains . .
Layers . .
Notes . .

LIONEL LINCOLN .

Notes . .

HOME AS REFOUND. .

The American Return.
The American Urn .
Notes . .


iii


Page

S .


3

5

5
. . 3

. . 5

. . 5
. . 33
. . 52
. . 62


. . 67

. . 67
. . 8 1
. . 88
. . 10 8
. . 125

. . 128

. . 12 8
. . 141
. . 165
. . 189

. . 192

. . 2 35

. . 2 38

. . 2 38
. . 260
. . 291














SEVEN THE OAK OPENINGS . . .. 296

The Symbolic Openings. . ... 307
The Author As Actor/Act-er .. 340
Notes. .. .. ... .352

EIGHT CONCLUSION . . ... .362

BIBLIOGRAPHY. . . . ... 367

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH . . ... .380














Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate School
of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the
Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy



ACTION IN FENIMORE COOPER'S TALES

BY

MARANDA MAZUR HUNTER LONGINO

August 1987

Chairman: John B. Pickard
Major Department: English


This dissertation examines the action in the

extended fictions of James Fenimore Cooper. While

Cooper's use of action is undenied, no thorough study of

these actions has been made. This paper describes the

types of actions in Cooper's fictions, explains the

basic action ordering structures of the texts, and

illustrates the significance of Cooper's use of action

in his romances. Three of Cooper's primary actions are

internally motivated: journey, quest, and search or

hunt. His other three primary actions arise from

external motivations: fight or battle, stalk, and chase.

Motion, as distinct from action, is non-static narration

suggested or mandated by conventions associated with the

narrative format itself.










Motion and actions are structured two ways.

Serial structure yields "chains" of action, and

synchronous structure produces "layers." Chained

structures offer "place centered" narratives, which

illustrate Cooper's basic conceptualization that story

unfolds in a scene analogously to the way a drama

unfolds on a stage. Layered structures produce "act

centered" narratives, which vivify Cooper's belief that

actions tell "the truth" about human existence. Both

action ordering structures yield viable narratives.

The various actions and structures of three

representative Cooperian texts are examined. Lionel

Lincoln, an "early work," shows how the characters'

actions undercut their narrative roles. The two volume

set from Cooper's "middle" period, Homeward Bound and

Home as Found, reveals how this author's characteristic

doubling conveys his meanings. The Oak Openings, a

"late work," illustrates how Cooper's symbols,

including his use of symbolic actions, operate within

one of his unfortunately misjudged narratives.

As this study shows, Cooper's literary capabilities

are habitually undervalued because his focus upon and

utilization of action is generally unexamined. Cooper's

artistic achievement is better appreciated when the

actions animating his texts are understood.
















CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION


"You will establish your reputation for activity
forever."

Lionel Lincoln
(X, 271)




If not for "ever," J. Fenimore Cooper did establish

a reputation for longer than any other American writer

of tales, and the reputation is certainly for "activity"

in these tales. According to Edgar Allan Poe, the tale
1
Cooper tells is a "succession of events." According to

William Cullen Bryant, Cooper's narratives are like

ships which fill the reader with delight as they pursue
2
their courses "at will, over the waters."

According to Francis Parkman, Cooper's greatest

characters "move and act .with all the truth and
3
energy of real life." Spiller finds Cooper to be "a

man of action rather than of mind" and the works to be
4
reflections of the man. Cooper "knew the art of .
5
movement," says Phelps. Lewis speaks of Cooper's "great
6
surge of motion"; House believes some of Cooper's
7
characters can only be known "by their actions"; Peck










finds Cooper's narrative structure "ordered on the basis
8
of constant motion"; Franklin believes the "lasting

significance of Cooper's novels derives from their .
9
energy."

This dissertation will examine some of the
10
"energetic" portions of Cooper's works. While

Cooper's use of action is undenied, no thorough study of

these actions has been made. This paper describes the

types of actions in Cooper's fictions, explains the

basic action ordering structures of the texts, and

illustrates the significance of Cooper's use of action

in his romances. Chapter One defines three actions in

Cooper's fictions which spring from basically internal

motivations: journey, quest, and search or hunt.

Chapter Two discusses three actions which have their

inception in basically external sources: fight or

battle, stalk, and chase. Chapter Three examines two

ways Cooper structures his actions; serial structure

yields "chains" of action, and synchronous structure

produces "layers." Chapter Four examines Lionel

Lincoln, an "early work" by this author, and shows how

the characters' actions undercut their narrative roles.

Chapter Five offers a reading of the "doubled" actions

and aspects of Homeward Bound and Home as Found and

discusses how this "middle work" is a pivotal text for

the author. Chapter Six presents an explicatory study


I










of a "late work," The Oak Openings, and examines how

Cooper's symbols, including his use of symbolic actions,

operate within one of his unfortunately misjudged

narratives. As this dissertation shows, Cooper's

literary capabilities are habitually undervalued because

his focus upon and utilization of action is generally

unexamined. Cooper's artistic achievement is better

appreciated when the actions animating his texts are

understood.



Notes


1. From Edgar Allan Poe's review of Wyandotte in
Graham's Magazine 23 (1843) as reprinted in American
Romanticism: A Shape for Fiction, ed. Stanley Bank (New
York: G. P. Putnam's Sons, 1969) 182.

2. From the February 25, 1852 memorial speech
"Discourse on the Life, Genius, and Writings of J.
Fenimore Cooper" as reprinted in the Introduction to
Precaution (New York: D. Appleton & Co., 1873; rpt.,
Grosse Pointe, Michigan: Scholarly Press, 1968 34.

3. Francis Parkman, "James Fenimore Cooper," North
American Review, 154 (January 1852): 148.

4. Robert E. Spiller, ed., James Fenimore Cooper:
Representative Selections, with Introduction, Biography,
and Notes (New York: American Books Company, 1936) ix.

5. William Lyon Phelps, Some Makers of American
Literature (1922; New York: Norwood, 1977) 44.

6. R.W.B. Lewis, The American Adam: Innocence,
Tragedy, and Tradition in the Nineteenth Century
(Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1955) 103.

7. Kay Seymour House, Cooper's Americans (Columbus:
Ohio State University Press, 1965) 47. She is speaking
of the Indian characters.






4



8. H. Daniel Peck, A World by Itself: The Pastoral
Moment in Cooper's Fiction (New Haven: Yale University
Press, 1977) 92. He is discussing The Last of the
Mohicans.

9. Wayne Franklin, The New World of James Fenimore
Cooper (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1982)
3.

10. Unless otherwise identified, the texts used
are James Fenimore Cooper, Works of James Fenimore
Cooper, 10 vols. (New York: Peter Fenelon Collier,
1891-1893). Citations to chapter and page number are
made within the text.















CHAPTER TWO

JOURNEY, QUEST, AND HUNT


1
Journey: Travel or Passage From One Place to
Another

"He-e-e-re, he-e-ere, pups--away, dogs, away!--
ye'll be footsore afore ye see the end of the
journey."

The Pioneers
(XLI, 784)



Journey narratives, tales which take as an

organizational framework the description of travel

through space, are among the oldest and comprise some of

the most powerful literature in the world. Gilgamesh's

journey to the otherworld, Odysseus' journey homeward,

the Children of Israel's journey to a homeland, the

Wandering Jew's eternal journey, and the earliest

writings that can be considered American, Columbus'

voyage of exploration and John Smith's chronicle of

discovery of the New World--these seminal works are

travel tales.

"American literary tradition has been characterized

to a remarkable and peculiar degree by narratives and
2
images of journeys," notes Janis Stout. The earliest










American writings were of journeys to discover the New

World, journeys to escape the Old World, and journeys to

settle this "New Eden." The earliest American

"fictions," Joseph Morgan's The History of the Kingdom

of Basaruah (1715) and Benjamin Church's Entertaining

Passages on King Philip's War (1716), utilize the

journey as an organizational element. Journey is a

predominate aspect, too, in Ann Eliza Bleecker's The

History of Maria Kettle (1793), in all of Brockden

Brown's early works, and in Hugh Henry Brackenridge's

Modern Chivalry (1792-1815). All these American works

preceded Cooper's first narrative.

So it was that Cooper inherited and adapted a form

that was well-established in America for his tales which

treat travel, his journey narratives. It was a form in

which the major patterns were well-developed and

particularly relevant to the aspirations and beliefs of

his readers, both in the nineteenth century and now.

"The distinctive power of American Literature has

in large part been a matter of the impact of motion, the
3
journey." Cooper's distinctively American fiction uses

the motion of the journey to good effect. Indeed, as

the following list indicates, twenty-five of Cooper's

tales include a journey, either thoroughly or sketchily

developed, in the first chapter.










The Spy


The Pioneers


The Pilot

Lionel Lincoln


The Last of the Mohicans


The Red Rover


The Wept of Wish-ton-Wish


The Prairie


The Water-Witch


The Bravo


The Headsman

Homeward Bound

Home As Found

The Pathfinder


Mercedes of Castile


The Deerslayer


The Wing-And-Wing

Wyandotte


The Hidenmauer


A "solitary traveler" rides
through the rain.

Elizabeth, "journeying" home to
Templeton, meets Natty.

Two ships journey to anchorage.

Lionel ends his "tiresome and
protracted voyage."

The Munro sisters "journey in
the woods."

A "traveler" journeys near
Newport.

Mark Heathcote takes a
"journey inland."

The Bush family "travels" across
the west in a wagon train.

Van Beverout takes an "expedition"
through town.

Monforte enters his gondola
for a "passage" across Venice.

"Travelers" begin a voyage.

Eve is a "traveler" home.

Eve continues her journey "home."

Four "wayfarers in the wilderness"
pause in their "journey."

The "departure of an embassy"
begins.

Natty and Harry "journey"
together.

A craft arrives in port.

Nick goes "on an important
movement" to secure a patent.

Two men meet on a forest path.










Miles Wallingford The characters "voyage."

Satanstoe The narrator's "journey" begins.

The Redskins "My uncle Ro and myself had been
traveling five years."

The Crater Mark's first voyage is to
"the capes."

Jack Tier A ship departs on the tide.

The Oak Openings Three travelers meet a fourth
man in a forest glade.


Undeniably, the journey is a vital component at the
4
beginning of Cooper's fictions.

Janis Stout's comprehensive study of the journey

in American literature describes six main types of

narratives and notes different sub-genres of the
5
family. The types are

1) Exploration
2) Escape
3) The Home-Founding Journey
4) The Return to Home
5) The Journey to No End
6) The Quest

She notes the first three types are "the three primary,

the earliest, patterns of journey narrative in American

literature," and that the patterns for most of the types
6
are "goal-directed."

Accounts of exploration generally play a minor

role in distinctively American literature, although they

are used frequently in non-fiction works which have
7
"chiefly historical" focus. Any time Cooper's










characters stride into virgin forests or float on

uncharted seas, they explore. It is in this sense

of examining the "never before seen" that Stout

classifies exploration. Any time the narrative treats

a character's movement through a space new to that

character, exploration is described.

The crews in The Sea Lions "steer with an

undeviating course into the mysterious depths of the

antarctic circle" (XIV, 102) as they approach "Cook's

'Ne plus Ultra'" (104), and the tale carries them into

strange regions of frozen wonder where fiery volcanoes
8
and exotic creatures interrupt the weird ice-scape.

Cooper also penned a similar narrative of

exploration, treating the seminal American exploratory

travel, when he created Mercedes of Castile, the tale

of Columbus' first voyage to the New World. In this

narrative, too, after the crew comes to land much

description is given of the scene. The strange, and

occasionally lovely, natives and scenes and the curious

customs of the place are "explored" extensively. In

Mercedes of Castile Cooper makes use of a characteristic

narrative technique which often tends to distract the

reader's attention from the main action of the tale.

Cooper gives the focus of his attention to a predictable

romantic hero, the twenty-year old Luis de Bobadilla.

The title of the tale is the name of Luis' stay-at-home










beloved. While Cooper does chronicle Columbus' voyage

with an almost log-like precision, working, as he notes

in the Preface, "with the journal of the admiral" (3)

before himself, Cooper downplays the exploratory tale

by encapsulating it within the romance of Luis and

Mercedes.

Despite narrative flaws and although the New World

exploration in Mercedes of Castile may be thought of, as

may the Antarctic exploration of The Sea Lions, as a

species of imaginary voyage for Cooper, who never

personally visited the Azores or the Indies, these two

tales amply illustrate Cooper's knowledge of the journey

of exploration as a form for fiction.

The observation must be made here that brief

"explorations" occur in nearly all of Cooper's tales.

Any time a character first views a space, he experiences

a moment of "exploration." When young Natty first

glimpses the Glimmerglass, although he is in the company

of one who has often traveled the location, he

"explores," at least, as far as he is concerned. As the

bushes part, "An exclamation of surprise broke from the

lips of Deerslayer, an exclamation that was low and

guardedly made .when he beheld the view that

unexpectedly met his gaze. It was, in truth .

striking" (The Deerslayer, II, 15). Deerslayer says of

the place, "This is grand!--'tis solemn!--This is a










sight to warm the heart! (17) "a glorious spot"

(21). Cooper notes that Natty "found a pleasure in

studying this large, and to him, unusual opening in the

mysteries and forms of the woods" (22). Although Harry

has visited the area numerous times, despite the

Hutters' established residency of the spot, and even

though Indians have hunted the locale for generations,

Natty "explores" the Otsego when first he arrives.

Literally scores of such scenes dot Cooper's tales.

Although such "explorations" are purely personal and

typically fleeting, they convey a small wonder at each

occurrence.

The narrative of escape, unlike that of exploration,

continues Stout, is "pervasive and of central concern.

S. It is the most fully characteristic form adopted
9
by the American imagination." Flight narratives, about

the Pilgrims and the Puritans, about soldiers in defeat

and Indians in retreat, about Natty Bumppo, America's

first great fictional hero who finds himself no longer

able to abide the transmogrified Templeton of The

Pioneers--these narratives are of escape. Fiction of

escape offers the "motivational build-up toward the

culminating act of breaking out. The journey that
10
follows is not typically elaborated."

An example of an undeveloped journey of "escape" in

Cooper's works appears at the close of The Sea Lions.


I









The romantic story line has already concluded with a

marriage between the hero, Roswell, and heroine, Mary.

Then follows this brief passage

Roswell .sold his property and
migrated to the great West. Mary .
had seen certain longings after the ocean,
and seals, and whales, in her husband; and
did not consider him safe so long as he
could scent the odors of a salt marsh. (XXX, 231)

This migration "to the great West" is about as

unelaborated an escape as can be imagined; Roswell's

"motivational build-up" is similarly absent.

No journey action of note is to be found in Natty's

narrative of escape either, but his "motivational build-

up" is the core of The Pioneers. His conflicts with

Marmaduke Temple, who represents the force of

civilization, and his altercations with the law reveal

his desire to hold on to a philosophy and way of life

which is not a viable possibility in the changing

pioneer community. Natty, by the close of his first

narrative, has seen America's resources so depleted in

the Templeton area that his occupation is forever gone.

His home has been reduced to rubble. Major Effingham

and Chingachgook, and even Oliver and Elizabeth, no

longer need Natty's aid. As the old hunter loses

friends, fireside, and virgin forest, he suffers a

superfluity of motivations which build up within him.


I










Natty was originally conceived of as a secondary

character whose function was in opposition to that

served by Marmaduke Temple. Natty was created to lose

his struggle. Yet, as Bumppo's character came to life,

it grew. Cooper seems to have sensed the vital

potential Natty had, for the author changes the thrust

of Leatherstocking's actions in the closing few

paragraphs of the tale. Natty, as he makes clear, does

not leave Templeton on a journey of "escape."

While it can be argued that many of Natty's feelings

toward the end of The Pioneers may be concerned with

getting ready to "break out" of the Templeton area, none

of his actions illustrates this motivational build-up.

By the time he appears at the gravesites, Natty has

already focused upon a movement "to," and not "away

from." As Cooper describes the scene, Natty's "decisive

appeal" is not his early one, which does point toward a

motive of apparent "escape": "These [clearings] be

nothing. I have took but little comfort [in them]

sin' your father come on with his settlers" (XLI, 783).

No, Natty's "decisive" argument which finally silences

Elizabeth indicates his forward-looking orientation:

"I'm formed for the wilderness. If ye love me, let me

go where my soul craves to be ag'in!" (783). Natty may

feel he must "escape," but he acts so as to return to

his proper home, the wilderness.










When journeys of escape are elaborated, Stout

maintains, they usually appear as a "series of new

compulsions or repeated acts of escape .or as a
11
modulation into another form of journey." Such

elaborated journeys of escape often develop as action

narratives which are best seen as chase narratives. The

escaping prisoner, the settler fleeing Indian

hostilities, and the ship's crew flying before the

pirate or the enemy craft all act to escape only so long

as the pursuer remains proximate. While such action may

be lengthy, especially at sea, it is not so much one

unified action, as developed in Cooper's fictions, as it

is the sort "series" of repeated acts which Stout notes.

The acts of the escape, which are responsive acts that

the pursued takes only so long as his pursuer is

proximate end as soon as the threat is removed. If the

escaping character, once distance has been attained,

continues to journey, he does so for a new reason; his

journey of escape "modulates" into another type of

action. He may decide to return home, as does Natty; he

may choose to establish a new home, to explore, or

simply to keep in motion until some new person, place,

or thing attracts his attention and generates activity.

His choice is often influenced by the terminated escape

action; however, the journey taken, if any, after an










escape has a different focus than has the "pursued/pursuer"

orientation of escape/chase action.

Briefly then, the works of Cooper do utilize action

of the type called "journey of escape." During the

introductory period of motivational build-up, no action

occurs. The action which does finally occur and which

Stout calls "journey action" is better described as

"chase action" and is discussed at length below. Chase

action is one of Cooper's most effective forms.

No journey in Cooper's fictions is an exemplar of a

"journey of escape" similar to Huck Finn's, for Cooper's

escaping characters habitually do have a goal toward

which they move as soon as they are free to do so. The

"escaping" journeyer acts so as to move "away from" the

threat. Cooper's characters do not act throughout their

narratives so as to disengage; they seem to have a

desire to attain, to move "toward" a goal. They act to

secure a safe place, not merely to escape a hostile one.

Even his characters who do journey throughout their

tales, in action here called "quest action," do evince

an orientation toward some goal. That the goal remains

unattained does not alter their focus on it. Cooper's

briefly extended action of the chase does lead the

characters "away from" their foe. Cooper's extended

journey actions are movements "toward."









The Home Founding Journey, which frequently "begins
12
with escape," is generally hopeful or confident in tone

and focuses on the future, the new home to be

established. This journey is characterized by some, or

all, of the following: a pregnancy or successful new

birth, a focus on the method of the travel, the

development of a social order, and serial overcoming of

obstacles, usually presented by the terrain itself.

This form is "always to some degree collective, even if
13
only to the degree of being familial."

Cooper's first treatment of the Home Founding

Journey is in the pages of The Wept of Wish-Ton-Wish.

Chapter I opens with the usual introductory exposition,

but this introduction reveals the modulation of journey

of escape into journey of exploration and into home

founding journey.

A colony of self-devoted and pious
refugees from religious persecution had
landed on the rock of Plymouth, less than
half a century before. The labors of the
emigrants had been chiefly limited to the country
on the coast But enterprise, and a desire
to search for still more fertile domains, together
with the temptation offered by the vast and
unknown regions had induced many bold
adventurers to penetrate more deeply into the
forest. The precise spot [of the setting] was one
of those establishments of what may .. be
called the forlorn hope in the march of
civilization through the country. (I, 378)

The elder Heathcote had settled this region a

generation past, taking a "voluntary exile" from










England. "The very day he landed in the long-wished-for

asylum, his wife made him the father of a noble boy"

(388). Twenty years after this event, the father

"announced that he intended for a second time to

establish his altars in the wilderness" (389).

Neither person nor property was transferred
from place to place, in this country, at the
middle of the seventeenth century, with the
dispatch and with the facilities of the present
time. The roads were necessarily few and short,
and communication by water was irregular, tardy,
and far from commodious. Accompanied by a
few followers, he proceeded on an exploring
expedition, and established an estate
in the colonies. (390)

The birth of a son, the difficulty of locomotion along

the poor roads or via water, the collective nature of

the "followers", and their pre-established social order

point to a typical, albeit underdeveloped and sketchily

presented, home founding journey.

Wyandotte also opens with a home founding. Cooper

sets the stage for the journey like this

Our present tale now leads us to the
description of one of those early personal or
family settlements in a very remote
part of the territory. Captain Willoughby
had married an American wife, and .a son and
daughter were born .. An adopted child was
also added to his cares. Our limits and plans
will not permit us to give more than a sketch of
the proceedings of the captain in taking
possession . Our adventurers made the most
of their journey by water. After finding their
way to the head of the Canaideraga, mistaking it
for the Otsego, they felled trees, hollowed them
into canoes, embarked, and, aided by a yolk of
oxen that were driven along the shore, they wormed
their way descending [a] river until they










reached the Unadilla, which stream they ascended
until they came to the small river that ran
through the captain's new estate. The labor of
this ascent was exceedingly severe. (I, 6, 8-9)

The remainder of the chapter recounts with fair

detail the "hutting," the transportation of goods, the

opening of a natural dam, the planting, the

construction of a saw-mill, the first harvest, the

beginning of construction on a house, and the return of

Willoughby to his family, preparatory to their

departure to their wilderness home. In both The Wept

of Wish-Ton-Wish and Wyandotte, Cooper's home-founding

journeys modulate fairly rapidly into other narrative

types.

However, in two of Cooper's tales home founding is

seen to be a more lengthy process. In Satanstoe Corny

Littlepage and the Mordaunt entourage journey to found a

home. The Mordaunt females travel in "a covered

vehicle" that transports "many articles of furniture,"

and the black servants have another "conveyance, strong,

spacious, and covered" (XIX, 321). The party is a large

one; a score of settlers moves into the woods.

Initially, the passage is fairly good.

Of roads, however, we were not long to enjoy
the advantages. Herman Mordaunt was obliged
to quit his wagons, and to put all the females on
horseback. [A]fter a delay of half a day, time
lost in making these arrangements, we proceeded.
The wagons were to follow, but at a slow pace, the
ladies being compelled to abandon them on account
of the ruggedness of the ways, which would have










rendered their motion not easy to be borne. .
[T]he uneven road .. .soon became very little
more than a line cut through the forest, with an
occasional wheel-track, but without the least
attempt to level the surface of the ground by any
artificial means. (XX, 335)

As the journeyers approach their destination, Herman

Mordaunt tells Corny about the cost and trouble "in

getting the ten or fifteen families who were on his

property, in the first place, to the spot itself" (340).

Because these journeyers have an already erected

"log building" which Herman Mordaunt's agent has

prepared for his family, the only actual beginning of

settlement itself occurs at Mooseridge, Corny

Littlepage's prospective home. The choosing, felling,

cutting, notching, placing, filling of chinks, and

roofing over of the trees is described. "We were quite

a week in completing our house," Corny states (XXI,

353). The initial journey is complete by Chapter XXI,

but Corny's narrative of home founding does not end

until the very last page of the tale. He concludes,

"Early in October [Anneke and I] were married, and the

remainder of the telling of the tale "may fall to the

share of my son Mordaunt, should he ever have the grace

to continue this family narrative" (XXX, 511). More

than fifty chapters later, Cooper lays the Littlepage

family to rest.










But, at least, Hugh Littlepage, of The Redskins,

does finally rest. The Bush family, on the other hand,

is last seen in the final chapter of The Prairie

"Pursuing their course the principals of the

family themselves never heard of more" (XXXII,

429). This clan departs the tale as they entered, still

seeking, "Whatever might be the final destination" (I,

216).

The Return To Home is not usually "as congenial a

form in American literature" because American authors

often present such returns through narratives that

indicate "defeat, frustration, and the giving up of
14
freedom" to be the result of the return. While many

American authors felt a strong need to "define

themselves" and their homeland by reference to Europe,

their resultant fictions are "freighted with the irony
15
of conflicting motives and ideals." Cooper treats the

return to a European home extensively in Notions of the

Americans, a nonfiction work, but he does not structure
16
a romance upon such a return.

John Paul Jones' "return" to Great Britain in The

Pilot does not qualify as a narrative created to

illustrate his "self-definition" via a return to

European home; it is a tale of adventure which depicts a

hero already fully developed. Miles Wallingford does,

finally, travel to England, but his "definition of self"










occurs in so many places--in Canton, off Sumatra, near

Madagascar, off Guadeloupe, by Virginia, in New York, on

a voyage "around the world" (to Madeira, Rio de Janeiro,

British Columbia, Hawaii, Ecuador, Marble Land, and New

York), to France, Russia, and Italy--that it would be

foolish to label his brief English sojourn as a "return

to home." In The Bravo, The Headsman, The Heidenmauer,

and The Wing-and- Wing, Cooper's scenes are European,

but so are his characters. Cooper does not offer a

full-blown narrative of an American character returning

to the European home to "define" himself.

It may be that Cooper felt he had offered quite

enough "definition" via European return in his non-

fiction works, or it may be that he had hit on the mode

that best suited his own temperament in the first

attempt, the "Notions" technique of an American

character's return to America as a self-defining return.

Whatever the reason, Cooper frequently treats the return

to the American home as the journey most rewarding for a

structure in his tales.

Lionel Lincoln returns to Boston after a seventeen-

year absence and feels "the place begins to freshen my

memory, and I now recall the scenes of my childhood"

(Lionel Lincoln, II, 219). The mysterious Ralph, also

returning to America after a stay in England, states, "I

have noted the increase of the town as a parent notes










the increasing stature of his child; nor is my love for
17
it less than parental" (II, 222). Both men return to

home and learn who they are in that place.

Elizabeth Temple, returning home after four years in

New York, examines Templeton as it bursts into sight

before her.

The scene was so rapidly altering under
the hands of man that it only resembled in its
outlines the picture she had so often studied with
delight in childhood. [S]o rapid were the
changes, and so persevering the labors of those
who had cast their fortunes on the success of the
enterprise, that it was not difficult for the
imagination of Elizabeth to conceive they were
enlarging under her eye, while she was gazing, in
mute wonder, at the alterations that a few short
years had made in the aspect of the country.
(The Pioneers; III, 562)

Mixed with the self-definition of the experience of the

return to home is a type of wonder, similar to the

wonder of discovery, if the returning traveler has been

absent from home for an appreciable time.

The "wonder" of rediscovery of the American home is

often not a pleasure-filled one. Perhaps the most

painfully "wonderful" return Cooper offers is Hugh Roger

Littlepage's journey back to upstate New York in The

Redskins. Although Cooper's polemical purposes

overshadow his characters and plots severely, the action

is "return to home" and Hugh's "self-definition" is as

lengthy as it is painful. While the changes in America

are profound, the hero changes not at all as he










rediscovers his home and defines himself in relation to

it. Despite the loss of his pew canopy and a barn, he

retains his property in defiance of the anti-renters and

secures his beloved, Mary Warren. He is a "sadder man,"

but not a "wiser" one in any meaningful sense of the

word. This is because he is one of Cooper's perfectly

"proper" heroes. Such characters, which function as

vehicles for conveying the author's message, need no

improvement. They are as good as is humanly possible.

All Hugh actually seems to learn is that America does

indeed have severe problems which must be borne because

they cannot apparently be remedied. With a species of

melancholy wonder at the facts of his life, Hugh makes

the best of that life, of himself, his extensive

property, and his heiress wife. While his journey has

altered his location in space and his companions, it has

not materially changed the man. Yet, when he is finally

properly "home," no more need be said.

In Homeward Bound and Home as Found Cooper offers

his fullest homeward journey, another return to an

American home. The journey itself seems to have taken

control of the author. As Cooper writes in the Preface,

[Homeward Bound] was commenced with a sole
view to exhibit the present state of society in
the United States, through the agency, in part, of
a set of characters who had freshly arrived
from Europe, and to whom the distinctive features
of the country would be apt to present themselves
with greater force. By the original plan,










the work was to open at the threshold of the
country, or with the arrival of the travelers
[home]. But .the work [grew until it
was found to be] actually closing at, or near, the
spot where it was originally intended it should
commence. (475)

This return to America after a twelve years' absence is

a journey that takes 52 chapters to effect. After

several chases, a gale, a transfer to another ship, an

expedition to Africa, an escape, an attack, another

escape, a bloody fight, yet another escape, and several

score lesser actions, Eve arrives in the New World. But

her journey is still far from over, for she must yet

travel the Hudson by steamboat and the Mohawk Valley by

canal boat and carriage, a further seventeen chapter

hegira, before she arrives at home. Needless to say,

somewhere along the way Eve manages to "define" herself

in response to her home-seeking journey.

The Journey to No End, the futile travel "of

uncertain destination or duration" has become the
18
characteristic American vehicle. This journey of

lostness is a journey of futility, of "rootlessness and
19
disorder." Many modern American fictions delineate

this journey, which has come into full flower in this

century. While Cooper did not make full-blown use of

this type, the zeitgeist of his era not resembling that

of our later times in this respect and the author's own

attitudes shaping a fictive world that seems ultimately










to have an orientation on a home place, Cooper does

offer certain examples of this journey type as early as
20
1824 in The Pilot.

The Pilot contains Cooper's first reference to The
21
Flying Dutchman. Long Tom Coffin asserts that, while

he himself has never seen the ship, he has "seen them

that have seen her, and spoken her, too" (XXI, 123). In

The Red Rover a ship, strangely out of place on the

ocean, calls to mind "the Flying Dutchman (XIV, 323).

While one character opines that this ship "can never be

the Dutchman," a common sailor notes that he "will not

swear that a real living ship" follows the Royal

Caroline through the worsening storm. House likens the

hero of this narrative to Odysseus, noting the fact that
22
he journeys throughout all of the romance. However,

he is ultimately seen to be a simple human whose journey

does end. It is in the reference to the Flying Dutchman

that Cooper offers the journey to no end.

Folklore has it that the Dutchman is a plague ship,

denied entry at every port where she calls. Eventually,

all aboard die. but the ship sails on. Crewed entirely

by corpses, the Dutchman can be seen in stormy weather,

often off the Cape of Good Hope, a wandering ghost-

vessel, doomed to journey without arrival, forever

tossed on the seas of ill-luck.










On a less legendary note, the closing action of The

Water-Witch offers a journey to no end. Tom Tiller, the

Skimmer of the Seas, bids a final adieu to his beloved,

Eudora.

"Whither go you?" she asked "Whither
do you sail, and when do you return?"
"I follow fortune. My return may be distant--
never! Adieu, then, Eudora. .
"We will go together! I am thine .
Away, away!" cried the frantic girl .
"Think, for one moment, think!" he said.
"Thou wouldst follow an outcast--an outlaw--one
hunted and condemned. With a ship for a
dwelling--the tempestuous ocean for a world!"
"Thy world is my world!--thy home my
home--thy danger, mine!"



Eudora was lifted from the ground as if her weight
had been that of a feather she was borne to
the boat. In a moment the bark was afloat. .
It lingered for a minute, and was swallowed in the
void. It never returned. (XXXIV, 719-720)

On an utterly mundane level, Sancho Mundo of

Columbus' crew says that "sailing about the ocean is

[his] happiness" (Mercedes of Castile, XVII, 271). He

has been a wanderer for so long that "it sickeneth [him]

and taketh away the appetite, to walk on solid ground

"(XIV, 226). Throughout his life whenever his voyage

has ended he "has submitted to fate, and [gone] out

again, as soon as possible" (XIV, 227). This character

who wanders without end has some ties to shore; Sancho

was born on the land.










However, like Zephyr on The Water-Witch, Long Tom

Coffin is so much the journeyer to no end that he "was

born on board a chebacco-man, and never could see the

use of more land than now and then a small island to

raise a few vegetables" (The Pilot; II, 10). His life

begins in a state of journey, and it continues in that

same manner until his death, and beyond. The last view

of Tom shows him being swept rapidly through the brine

amidst the wreck of his beloved Ariel (XXIV, 150). His

body is never found; the sea, not giving up its "own"

dead, rocks him in an eternal, tumultuous embrace.

All of the journey types that American authors have

ever used are to be found in the works of Fenimore

Cooper. Not only does he utilize all the identifiable

types, but also he uses journey for both prosaic and

imaginative ends. At their most literal, journey

narratives are travelogues. The travelogue may consist

of a basic guide describing accommodations, meals, means

of locomotion, and worthwhile sights along a route.

Stripped of all fictive and imaginative devices, this

form, found even today in tourist guides, has no

pretenses at "literature." Portions of Cooper's non-

fiction approach this level of journey narrative. At

other times, Cooper takes pains to use his basic journey

framework as a soapbox for declamation of social

commentary, criticism, and panacea.










At the far end of the spectrum, Cooper writes

journeys of the sort which Philip Babcock Gove names
23
"Imaginary Voyages." Gove differentiates

grandss voyages" from little voyages, which he names

"journeys" or "trips," but he then specifically notes

that length in days or miles does not offer a method of

determination and that it does not matter if the account

fails to sustain the entire text. Types of "Imaginary

Voyages" include Utopias, Robinsonades, sea novels,

picaresques, chroniques scandaleuse, and framework conte
24
de fee tales. Gove concludes by calling all such

works "geographical fiction, comparable in scope to
25
historical fiction."

Cooper utilized the imaginary journey comfortably.

The Crater offers a polemical Utopian tale. Mark

Woolston endures numerous mishaps before he arrives at

the Edenic island in the Pacific which he names Vulcan's

Peak, colonizes, and eventually abandons when its other

settlers, wresting control from the founding father and

discoverer, "spoil" the purity of his simple social

order. When the tale closes, the entire island has sunk

back beneath the surface of the ocean which originally

covered it. The Monikins recounts two voyages, one to

Leaplow, a land remarkably like the United States, and

the other to Leaphigh, a country marvelously similar to

England. In one respect, however, the two lands are not










like any place in the world: denizens of both are

monkeys. Both these tales are social commentaries; both

make use of completely imaginary voyages as a way to

arrive at locations which are developed polemically.

Cooper's narratives cover the full spectrum, from

the unremittingly mimetic to the thoroughly imaginative.

He moves at will between the two worlds, sometimes

within the same tale. In Lionel Lincoln Boston is a

"nightmare world," and the tale is the most Gothic
26
Cooper ever wrote. Yet the location is the one Cooper

researched the most carefully and that he described with

the greatest fidelity to actual, physical location. In

The Water-Witch, "the real and unreal are brilliantly
27
interwoven." The Leatherstocking Tales, too, exhibit

Cooper's easy movement between the two extremes of

journey presentation. The Deerslayer nicely illustrates

the polar opposites.

In Chapter XXVII, Natty takes to a canoe in an

ultimately vain attempt to escape his captivity in the

Indian camp on the banks of the Otsego. Approaching the

bark, he finds "that the paddles had been removed! .

[G]iving a right direction to its bow, he ran off into

the water, bearing the canoe before him, and threw all

his strength and skill into a last effort, and cast

himself forward so as to fall into the bottom of the

light craft." Natty's actions for the next half hour










are most realistically described: taking out his knife

"to cut a hole through the bark in order to get a view

of shore," being shot at, hitching his body along with

the utmost caution" to get "his eye at the bullet-hole,"

moving a "large, round, smooth stone to keep the

trim of the light boat while he worked his own body as

far aft as possible," having his skin "actually grazed"

by another bullet, "rowing without the necessity of

rising" by use of a stick, and feeling "his face fanned

by the air" as his exertions yield the desired result.

This finely textured and minutely rendered description

continues into Chapter XXVIII without ever once moving

away from unremitting realism.

At the other extreme, Cooper gives his reader an

earlier picture of Natty, with "a window in his breast

through which the light of his honesty was ever shining"

(IX, 83), afloat in the ark at night upon the

Glimmerglass.

In this manner half an hour passed, during which

time the ark had been slowly stealing over the water,

with the darkness thickening around it while the

mountains that lined the sides of the beautiful basin

were over-shadowing it, nearly from side to side. There

was, indeed, a narrow strip of water in the center of

the lake, where the dim light that was still shed from

the heavens fell upon its surface, in a line extending










north and south; and along this faint tract--a sort of

inverted milky-way the scow held her course (84).

Out of this reflected dreamscape, Hetty paddles a

canoe. Her body is "dimly visible, resembling a

spectral outline of a human form standing on the water,"

and it is illuminated faintly by "that species of milky-

way" which Deerslayer calls "Natur's dim road" (84).

Only in an imaginary voyage can a person float atop the

Milky Way and encounter spectral forms standing on the

stars.

Both mimetically and imaginatively, Cooper utilizes

his American journeys. He also evinces a conscious use

of the journey "out and back." Cooper's habitual

utilization of this journey pattern seems to indicate

his understanding of the symbolic dimensions of the

movement. As the journey away from home and back to it

was to be raised into unmistakable symbolic dimensions

by Hawthorne, and a host of following American authors,

it is noteworthy that Cooper was apparently so fond of

the pattern. In The Sea Lions the romantic hero,

Roswell Gardiner, departs from his home a callow youth.

During the almost unimaginably harsh winter in the

Antarctic, he finds a proper faith in God. Cooper says:

"Roswell Gardiner has never wavered in his faith, from

the time when his feelings were awakened by the just

view of his own insignificance, as compared to the power










of God" (XXX, 232). As a fact, Cooper's journeys "out

and back" include the actions of major or minor

characters in every single narrative he wrote. All his

tales contain movements away from and back to homes or

safe places. This characteristic journey action is

discussed extensively below. Sometimes the return to

area of origin is treated briefly, sometimes the place

of debarkation is slighted, sometimes the journey itself

is of small magnitude or brief duration, and sometimes

the response of the returned journeyer is not given at

all; however, the characteristic "out and back" movement

is ubiquitous.

The journey need not function as a symbol for man's

own process of maturity. Sometimes, in those

narratives by Cooper that take the characters to the

famous "neutral ground" between combatants or between

civilization and nature, the journey is a representation

of human conflict. As Stout notes, the journey in

American literature functions both as "a real event in
28
time and a timeless symbolic action." Cooper was

certainly aware of at least some of the import which

journey can be seen to have in his narratives. The fact

that he did not make conscious use of the form at all

times and in all places does not subtract from the fact

that he did make use of the form in all narratives in

multiple places.










Somewhere within Cooper the idea that journey was

somehow the "proper" movement for Americans had a

tenuous hold. In the same place within the minds of the

citizens, and in the fictive creations that speak and

act for the real people, was and is the same conviction.

Americans move as much as they do because they must;

their heroes do too. An examination of how Cooper

utilizes his various journeys, as well as his other

action types, both illuminates any particular text and

helps to explain his artistic talent.


Quest: A Seeking; Adventure; Usually
Involving a Journey


"Life is a pilgrimage, and a penance; though few
of us think so while journeying on its way; but so
it is to all. .

The Heidenmauer
(XXIV, 751)



Because the quest usually involves a journey, Stout

discusses this action as a sub-genre of the family.

However, as Peter Revell has discussed, real differences

exist between simple journey and action of quest or of

search or hunt. In Quest in American Poetry he

discusses the differences among journey, quest, and

search or hunt. He notes that a journey is merely a

series of adventures. He states that quest and search

both have an underlying basis in pursuit of goal "but










that 'quest' seems to imply (though the standard

dictionaries do not support this view) something

different from a search--the searcher knows what he is

looking for while the quester seeks to find
29
something not completely known."

The quest differs from simple journey because the

ultimate goal of the quester is both "radically

uncertain" and "radically significant. Equally
30
uncertain is the route that the quester must follow."

Further, when journey action ends, the journeyer simply

stops acting; when quest action closes, the quester is

typically emotionally affected and often either

radically transmogrified by the experience or destroyed

by the act.

As the questing hero moves toward his goal, his

interchanges with his fellows in society make clear his

basic loneliness. This loneliness is, as Blackburn has

noted, "the outgrowth of the sense of failed identity,

of the instability of an inferior social standing, and
31
of the failure to find human solidarity." Richard

Bjornson, speaking of the European novel, notes that the

questing hero exhibits ambiguous links with his own

past, that he always leaves home, that he undergoes some

sort of initiation, and that his contacts with his world

reveal its dehumanization and its pressures to
32
conform.










Cooper's questing characters are usually odd specimens

of humanity, as they would almost have to be. After

all, the quester is both isolated from humanity

emotionally and disjuncted from people spatially,

seeking through his world for a goal that his fellows do

not value with his intensity of emotion. The titular

character in Jack Tier is a short, waddling little

figure with a cracked voice, and Jack seems particularly

representative because he is notably peculiar in word

and deed. Boarding the Molly Swash from a skiff at sea,

Jack spins a yarn that he was accidentally left on an

island twenty years past and that he has been shipping

on other vessels ever since, trying to rejoin Captain

Spike and the Molly's crew. Spike cannot remember Jack,

but hires him on anyhow. The captain is a drinking

privateer, coarse and violent. When Spike attempts to

abduct the heroine, Jack rescues her and they escape;

however, at the first opportunity, Jack rejoins the

"willian" Spike.

When the Molly Swash sinks, Spike flings Jack out of

the yawl, but the game little character swims to safety

and is next seen wearing female attire, assiduously

mending clothing beside the hospital bed where Spike,

mortally wounded, is soon to die. This female, then, is

"Jack Tier--for it was he, appearing in the garb of his

proper sex, after a disguise that had now lasted full










twenty years" (XVI, 395). And for twenty years Jack has

quested across the oceans of the world seeking Stephen

Spike because, as she reveals to him, "I am your wife!"

(XVI, 405). Abandoned by her husband, Jack (Mrs. Spike)

has spent two decades seeking him out, forced to live as

a man so the quest could continue. "It is hard for a

woman to unsex herself to throw off her very

natur' and to turn man" (XVII, 411), but it is far

from impossible if the woman has reason enough for her

actions. Jack Tier's motivations are sufficient, and

"his" peculiarities are explained when "her" true sex is

revealed. Her questing ends when Spike dies. She

remains in skirts, remembers how to cry, and comes to

forgiveness. Subsequently, she grows out her hair,

leaves off chewing tobacco, and becomes a sort of old

maid aunt to the child born to the hero and heroine.

Once her quest action concludes, she becomes a "normal"

female person again.

With quest, as with journey, the character moves in

response to an internal motivation. Yet, the character

who journeys moves from one place to another place; a

character who quests moves from one place to some thing.

The quest object may well be another place, as is

evident. Religious pilgrimages are quests to attain

place.










Cooper's only full blown religious pilgrimage

occurs in Chapters XXIV-XXIX of The Heidenmauer. In

this text, the pilgrims journey afoot to expiate the sin

of their community, the burning of a local Bavarian

abbey. Of their number, only three seem to display the

properly reverent attitude of religious pilgrim; the

remaining dozen characters seem simply to be journeying

because they are forced to do so. The three true

pilgrims, Father Arnolph, a deeply devout Catholic,

Lottchen Hintermayer, who believes her only child to

have died, and Meta Frey, who loves the assumedly

deceased Hintermayer son, display the requisite

emotions for people on pilgrimage. They pray often and

fervently. They weep, faint, or stand transfixed by

awe. They are the least interesting members of the

group as they follow along after the leaders to the

shrine in Switzerland.

None of the proper pilgrims displays the sort of

sublimely transcendent union of quester with quest

object which proper quest narratives offer. Cooper

could understand, intellectually, the concept of

Catholic religious pilgrimage; however, he was not able

to comprehend the emotional verity of the act. This

single pilgrimage he offers, his sole religious quest,

is a failure. As a journey, the action is successful

enough. The dozen members of the group who are just










going along according to instructions are interesting

characters and they offer comic relief. But as a quest,

the action is unfortunately flawed. The three devout

pilgrims fail to come to life as they act. However,

even though the pilgrimage in The Heidenmauer is not a

good example of a religious quest to a sacred shrine, it

does reveal Cooper's knowledge of this particular form

of quest action.

Other quests found in Cooper's works are not

movements to special place; questers may move toward an

object, a person, or some ideal state of consciousness.

For example, the term "quest" is often given to

narratives involving no spatial journeys at all. While

Stout maintains that "the designation quest for a purely

mental yearning and effort" is a misnomer, she notes

that it is with this externally inactive form of the

quest that American journeys "have their strongest
33
affinities." While the concept of quest without

"movement" is possible, the idea of "journey" without

"movement" is absurd. Some quests involve no journey;

quests are different from journeys.

One way to see the difference between the two

actions is to examine the emotional intensity of the

quester's evaluation of the quest object. Another way

is to examine the emotion in the rhetoric surrounding

the moment of attainment of quest object. The quest










object, unlike the object of attainment for the

journeyer (i.e.: "journey's end"), may be either

materially real, physically obtainable or abstract,

ultimate, and intangible. Journey's end is the place

where action stops; quest's end may be anyplace--or no

place at all, in the sense that the quester may have to

die and depart all earthly places to attain his object.

When the journeyer finishes his action, he turns to some

other relatively average activity. When the quester

achieves his goal, he experiences an apotheotic moment

of emotional release, a transcendent instant.

The quest object itself, its intrinsic value, is

immaterial. Ahab pursues a whale; Gatsby a light. It

is the quester's personal evaluation of his quest

object, the "radically significant, beyond definition or
34
rational assessment" value he gives the item which

invests the object with its import. With a monomaniacal

orientation on the object, the quester gives pursuit.

He follows after his goal with such intensity that he

comes to view the real world around himself as somehow

not real any longer. Often the quester is frightened by

the world, or mystified by it, or horrified. Only when

he attains his desire, his quest object, is he content

with a contentment which appears apotheotic to non-

questers.










Cooper wrote no quest narratives of the caliber of

Moby Dick; he was not the artist Melville was. But he

did attempt quest narratives. Jack Tier's quest for

reunion with Captain Spike and the several characters'

pilgrimage to Switzerland in The Heidenmauer are two

examples. Three other quests that Cooper penned are

effective and merit lengthy examination.

In the hopes of beginning an extensive chronicle of

American history, Cooper wrote Lionel Lincoln. Readers

of his era and of subsequent ones agree that the tale is

a failure. Cooper mishandles his plot, stifles his

characters, and makes the wrong choice with his tone.

The only truly interesting character in the narrative is

Ralph, and he is not the hero. Because Ralph is not the

focus, his actions are not followed. Because of his

under-development, his quest is not immediately

apparent.

Ralph, unbeknownst to all, is actually Sir Lionel

Lincoln, a baronet; he is also a lunatic, escaped from

an English madhouse. Not surprisingly, given his

peculiar manner of speaking and his even more unusual

appearance, the other characters view Ralph with scorn,

confusion, and fear. To one woman, he "is some madman"

(XII, 283). To another, he is not human at all; "he can

even read our secret thoughts, as I had supposed man

could never read them" (XIV, 291). To Meriton, Ralph is










a "disagreeable old stranger with his mean, filthy

bundle of rags" (I, 214); to Lionel, Ralph is

"remarkable [hallowed] by the air of great age and

attendant care" (VIII, 255). The idiot savant, Job,

"worships [Ralph] as a God" (VIII, 258); the heroine,

Cecil, hears his voice and "instantly recalls] the

tones of the aged messenger of Death" (XXX, 388).

Ralph has left behind his home, distancing himself

so far from his past that even his name is lost. "I am

returned from a sad, sad pilgrimage" (I, 215), Ralph

intones, and he says, "I am alone .without love"

(VI, 244). Ralph is so alienated from humanity that he

says he finds all the people in all the world evil, and

all their acts vile. "All is treachery and sin" (IV,

231), he raves at one point. Ralph is so far severed

from his proper past that he seems to have actually

forgotten how old he is; chronologically no more than

fifty years old, Ralph moans of his great age and of the

"generations" of sinful men which he has seen pass away.

He states that he has borne "the burden of life till

Death has forgotten him" (XXXIII, 403), and in the

saying he reveals his quest.

I, who have seen ages pass since the blood of
youth has been chilled, and generation after
generation swept away, must still linger in the
haunts of men! (XXXI, 396). 'tis the old
that cannot die. I [grew] to manhood, and
learned] how hard it is to live, but .. I
cannot die! (XXXIII, 402-403).










Ralph is on quest throughout his narrative, peripherally

and dementedly, it is true, but he quests after his own

death. When he is finally granted his desire and death

comes to him, "a ray of passing reason lighted his

pallid and ghastly features, his look gradually

softening. A calm and decent expression possessed

those lineaments and, stretching forth his arms in

the attitude of benediction he fell .

perfectly dead" (XXXIII, 405). Ralph's "interests," as

he states early in the narrative, are all "already in

the grave" (IV, 231). When he attains union with his

goal, his Gothic quest ends.

Various actions by Natty Bumppo, the most

extensively studied character in Cooper's canon, have
35
been seen as quest actions. Walker labels the action

in The Deerslayer "quest" action, arguing that the

narrative of Natty's first kill can be seen as action

with "religious overtones suggestive of the quest for
36
the pure in heart for the Holy Grail." Peck believes

The Last of the Mohicans to be a narrative of "mythic
37
quest," with Uncas as the questing hero.

In The Prairie a third example of Natty's questing

action is evident. In this text, the same quest after

death which animates Ralph occupies the aged Natty

Bumppo, albeit not presented in as gristly a guise as is

Ralph's. In Lionel Lincoln the quest for death is not










the primary focus; in The Prairie, at least in reference

to Leatherstocking, it is. Cooper had set the stage

perfectly for Natty's quest for death at the close of

the narrative which first presented the hero. The final

chapter of The Pioneers depicts Natty "stretched on the

earth before a head-stone of white marble" and musing to

himself, "Who will be there to put me in the 'arth when

my time comes?" (XXXXI, 781). His concern is justified,

for he has "none of his name and family" in "all the

world." Also, he intends to depart the Templeton area

and leave behind all the lovely scene he holds so dear.

Natty states: "I'm weary of living in clearings I

crave to go into the woods ag'in--I do. If ye

love me, let me go where my soul craves to be" (XXXXI, 783).

The Prairie presents Natty first as a "colossal" (I,

218) figure, and then as a being emaciated, "suffering,

withered," "of more than eighty" years of "decay" (I,

219), moving through a "bleak and solitary" (I, 216)

land which is also "aged" (II, 221). Natty is no longer

a hunter, his occupation gone as completely as is his

home, the wilderness woods. "I have no regular abode,

and seldom pass more than a month at a time on the same

range" (II, 222), he states; "Seventy-and-five years

have I been upon the road" (II, 223). His travels have

brought him to such a desolate spot, according to him,

that "You may travel weeks, if not months in










these open fields" and find "neither dwelling nor

habitation for man or beast" (II, 223). when Natty

speaks these words, he is surrounded by the Bush clan,

who are soon to be attacked, besieged, and beleaguered

by enough Indians to keep them busy for weeks. Indeed,

Natty himself does allow that "hundreds, nay, thousands

of the rightful owners of the country [are] roving about

the plains" (II, 225). Natty is suffering from the

myopic vision of the quester, unable to see, here at the

opening of the narrative, the reality of the Indian camp

where he will, later, find the acceptable place to die.

Although when Natty speaks of "the inner country"

(XXXIII, 434) he literally means the "inhabited lands,"

his words conjure the image of that very subjective

world which the quester inhabits. When Natty can see

the Pawnee village for what it "really" is, he finds it

to be good, and he waits out the remainder of his life

in the midst of the respectful savages.

Cooper skillfully describes the close of Natty's

quest for death. Seated in a thronelike seat,

illuminated by the setting sun, accoutered with his

rifle and the preserved skin of his dog, attended by a

crowd of onlookers, Natty prepares to die. After he

leaves the "Here!" an Indian honors his passing with the

eulogy: "A valiant, a just and a wise warrior, has gone










on the path which will lead him to the blessed grounds

of his people" (XXXIII, 442).

Yet not all Cooper's quests end (or is it begin?)

with death. In Mercedes of Castile, the questing hero

is Christopher Columbus and his quest is to find the

New World.

As Cooper makes clear, Columbus is obsessed with his

inner vision, "filled with the vastness of his purposes"

(IIII, 53), "awakened to mightier things" (IIII,

59), set apart as "the chosen vessel" (V, 98), seeing a

"truth that was concealed from most eyes" (XIII, 198).

Many of the people around Columbus believe him to be no

more than a "mendicant adventurer" (v, 106); he is often

an "object of scorn" (VIII, 112), this "madman" (V,

109), this "visionary" (VIII, 117). Utterly solitary,

he has no family and no friends as he travels Europe

urging his suit for funding.

Columbus, even before he finally sets sail, has

spent a generation "on his weary pilgrimage" (IIII, 57).

As he tells the tale,

This matter hath now occupied my mind quite
eighteen years. During the whole of this long
period I have thought seriously of little else,
and it may be said to have engaged my mind
sleeping and waking. I saw the truth early and
intensely. I feel a reliance on success,
that cometh from dependence on God. I think
myself an agent, chosen for the accomplishment of
great ends. (V, 103)










His "great ends" are, first, "to see the wealth of

the Indies pouring into the coffers of Castile" in

consequence of this voyage and, second, to effect "the

recovery of the Holy Sepulchre" (XII, 183) through use

of this wealth. When Columbus finally prepares to leave

Europe in pursuit of his great ends, his face exhibits

"the chastened rapture of a Christian who was about to

quit a world of woe, to enter on the untasted, but

certain, fruition of blessed immortality" (XIII, 194).

Perhaps because Cooper himself was aware that his

book was failing somehow to vivify the rapturous quest,

he wrote in a character to accompany Columbus. And, in

order to make the point of the quixotic exercise

unmistakable, Cooper names the character Sancho--Sancho

Mundo.

The voyage to the New World is chronicled with a

documentary precision. It is, according to Columbus, a

voyage which "never had a precedent on this earth, for

its length or for the loveliness of its way" (XIV, 220).

Columbus believes his voyage will carry them to Cathay

or to Cipango (Japan), and he produces a map "from Paul

Toscanelli, a learned Tuscan" (XIX, 317), which shows

the city of "Quisay." This city's name means "The city

of Heaven" (XIX, 318). The quester does not know where

he is going in his quest. The pole star seems to "jump"

in the sky as the voyage continues, and the compasses










fail to point properly north. So uncertain is the

location of the quest object--or even its verity--that

Columbus himself is tricked by a low-lying bank of

clouds into believing that land has been sighted. His

face "became radiant with delight and pious exultation.

Uncovering himself, he cast a look upward in unbounded

gratitude, and then fell on his knees, to return open

thanks to God" (XX, 323). Although this sighting is a

false alarm, when the New World is actually seen,

Columbus and all the crew exhibit "exultation" (XXI,

346). His face revealing "the glow of inward rapture"

(XXI, 356), Columbus says, "Laud be to God!" (XXI,
38
353).

Cooper is obliged to remove Columbus from the

central position in the narrative after he has attained

his quest object. This shift of focus back to the

typically lifeless young and noble hero, Luis de

Bobadilla, does not help the tale; in fact, focus upon

the languishing romantic lead puts the kiss of death on

the quest narrative. However, just at the end of the

tale a breath of life wafts back into the pages when

Columbus has a final moment of attention. The old man

is aship again and he says,

I now go forth from Spain, on a far more
perilous adventure than [the first]. Then,
I sailed concealed in contempt, and veiled from
human eyes by ignorance and pity; now, I have left
the Old World followed by malignancy and envy. (XXXI, 508)










In Mercedes of Castile Cooper consciously uses the

quest to discover the New World as his ordering

mechanism. Once the quest object is attained and the

tensions which the quest action generated is lost, the

focus of the narrative disappears, illustrating just how

integral the ordering mechanism of quest action really

is. Possibly Cooper feared to offer the public yet

another work "which could scarcely be a favorite with
39
the females," and it might be for this reason that

his love story stretches all around the quest tale, like

a great anaconda, to choke the life out of the story.

However, the truth remains that Cooper was unable to

write a really effective quest narrative. He may

have known it himself, for he shies away from focus on

the quest hero, habitually presenting the quest moment

through the eyes of another character or with recourse

to his calm, authorial persona. Even when the focus is

directly on the quester, his tongue seems somehow tied:

"His lips moved in a vain effort to speak
Ralph, in Lionel Lincoln

"Here!"
Natty, in The Prairie

"Laud to be God!"
Columbus, in Mercedes of Castile


The problem with Cooper seems often to be that his

turgid prose destroys the surest method to precisely

identify quest: the revelatory moment when quest is










culminated. Cooper's words do not produce the emotional

effect necessary to the task. It may be fairly noted

that Cooper was not habitually concerned with writing

"The Great American Quest." Yet it can also be as

fairly noted that Cooper's fundamental purpose, his sub-

textual foundation, was to recreate the great American

quest itself, the quest of attaining a national

identity. Cooper, the man, knew American reporters to

be slanderous rumor-mongers, American lawyers to be

opportunistic bombasts, American voters to be uneducated

vacillators, and American citizens to be greedy and

selfish opportunists. But Cooper, the writer, knew the

artistic truth behind the unremarkable reality of his

New World home. And this artist could not help but

reach toward, yearn after, that myth.

Part of that American myth was, for Cooper,

marriage. All of his formulaic romantic story lines,

then, can be said somehow to spring from the world of

myth. The wedding ceremony, is thus that fusion of

quester with quest object. Frequently, the tale closes

just after the wedding itself because the end of the
40
quest brings an end to the action of the quester.

Such scenes, of course, offer a conclusion "favorable

with the females." The formula ends with "And they lived

happily ever after." But there seems to be another

dimension to the closure of tale with marriage, a










feeling of static "rightness" akin to the emotional

quiescence which the quester feels when his quest is

finally realized. Cooper's "proper" romantic leads,

however, are often so refined that they fail to vivify

the emotional intensity which is the surest indicator of

quest attainment. Further, Cooper's convoluted syntax

and painfully turgid prose usually interfere with the

realization of any emotional plateaus which the

characters purport to feel.

Finally, it may not be that Cooper is simply unable

to write the words that would vivify a quest; perhaps he

is also unwilling. It is certain that any man married

for 41 years to the same woman, as Cooper was, surely

knows that marriage is not an extended union of quester

with quest object that either destroys him or else

transmogrifies him radically. Yet, the idea that a

proper marriage was somehow a perfect marriage seems to

remain with the man. Lawrence has discussed the yawning

gulf between Cooper's "Wish-Fulfillment" and his

"Actuality" in reference to the Leatherstocking myth.

The "vision" which is Cooper's wish fulfilling fictive

reality in Natty's world is the author's "presentation

of a deep subjective desire" that is somehow "real" and
41
"almost prophetic." It is another species of this

"real" vision which animates Cooper's equally fictive,










but equally powerful, concept of the "ever after" which

he assigns to his lovers.

In 1820, Cooper wrote:

If there be bliss in this life, approaching
in any degree to the happiness of the blessed, it
is the fruition of long and ardent love, where
youth, innocence, piety, and family concord, smile
upon the union. (Precaution; XLVII, 715)


As late as 1850, in Cooper's last published narrative,

he still believes:

Perhaps there is nothing on earth that so
nearly resembles the pure happiness of the
blessed, as the felicity that succeeds the entire
union of two hearts that are wrapped up in each
other. The affinity of feelings, the
community of thought, the steadily increasing
confidence which, in the end, almost incorporates
the moral existence of two into one, are so many
new and precious ties, that it is not wonderful
the novices believe they are transplanted to a new
and ethereal state of being. ( The ways of the
Hour; XXX, 190)

Cooper's terms describing marriage as "approaching

the happiness of the blessed" which "transports" the

couple to "a new and ethereal state of being" embody

quest-object attainment. If he fails to recreate the

apotheotic moment, it is not because he lacks knowledge

of it, but because he is burdened with refined

characters who speak too "properly" to be properly

human, hampered by his own emotional reserve and

ambivalence, and constrained by the dictates of his

century and the conventions of his art.










Hunt: To Search Diligently; To Seek


"We looked carefully, in all directions, in the
hope of discovering something that might give us
an insight."

Afloat and Ashore
(XII, 334)


Journey narratives and quest narratives are two

self-motivated types of action that Cooper uses with

differing degrees of success in his various fictions. A

third type of self-motivated action, a type not properly

termed either journey, or quest, is the hunt or search.

A hungry or thirsty character, a character who is

impecunious, a marriageable youth with no potential

mate, a vaguely dissatisfied man or woman may set out to

hunt. The character may have no certain or definable

goal, seeking neither journey's end nor quest object.

He simply begins to move about in search of surcease

from his personal dissatisfaction. The searching

character casts about in the environment, vaguely

attempting to somehow rectify the "wrong" aspect of his

life.

Hunt or search action differs from journey of

exploration action, for the explorer acts to learn

something new about his world while the hunting or

searching character, as here defined, acts so as to

remedy an existing lack within himself. While both










actors may feel a similar internal motivation, the

"discontent" of wanting to move toward "something," the

explorer wants his vague need filled with sights or

knowledge never before seen or conceptualized; the

hunter has a specific lack of some sort which he wants

remedied. Both explorer and searcher are dissatisfied

and both move through space because of their emotional

feelings. And, it is true, the explorer who has no firm

idea of where to find a "new" place may cast about in

hunting action. Similarly, the hunting or searching

character may be "hunting" for previously unknown or

unseen places if he suffers from a "lack" of scenic

novelty. Yet, brief consideration of the difference

between action of the sort generated by a narrative

about Lewis and Clark and action described by a

narrative about thirsting people seeking a source of

water in any wilderness illustrates the real difference

between the two motivations. Proper explorers act to

attain "new" locations; proper hunters and searchers act

to resecure that which they have somehow "lost."

The hunt or search is typically an action of

relatively short duration. While characters may quest

or journey throughout an entire narrative, or even two,

Cooper's characters rarely search for very long.

Cooper's hunts are used either as brief, active










interludes or as a means of entry into one of the other,

more sustainable actions.

In The Last of the Mohicans Cooper presents a

typical and brief hunt. The Fort Henry massacre has

begun. The Munro sisters are surrounded by maddened

Indians. In the midst of the slaughter Magua has been

"raging from group to group, like one who, scorning to

touch the vulgar herd, hunted for some victim" (XVII,

107). When he finds Cora, he takes her captive. His

peculiar "raging from group to group" keeps him from

slaughtering, which is the proper act for an enraged

savage on the field. Magua has been "hunting" for

Lieutenant Colonel Munro, but he has not been finding.

When he locates Cora, a suitable substitute to assuage

his need, he begins a journey.

As is evident, a searching character on hunt may

find some item not even sought. This phenomenon

illustrates the basic self-orientation of hunting

action. When the personal lack is rectified, no matter

whatever item satisfies the searcher, his hunt is

complete.

As The Pioneers opens, Natty is in need of food.

The buck he has shot is loaded onto Judge Temple's

sleigh. Although the wounded Oliver Edwards (Effingham)

says he will bring "a quarter of the buck" (I, 556) back

for dinner, Natty does not need the food; no hunter of










Bumppo's skill needs help to find game for his rifle.

Natty shoots a nearby pheasant and calls to Edwards,

"never mind the venison, boy." Here the

Leatherstocking's hunt for dinner yields not only fresh

game, but also serendipitous meeting with travelers in

the woods.

In The Wept of Wish-Ton-Wish only "six-and-thirty"

sheep, rather than the requisite "seven-and-thirty,"

arrive back at home. The sheepboy adds that he has been

"an hour among the briars and bushes of the hill,

looking for the lost wether" (II, 395). "Hast thou

ridden carefully through the clearing?" asks the owner

of the animals. The boy replies he has. The owner then

rides away from his home, loitering "along the path .

and at times bending his gaze around the whole of his

limited horizon (II, 395). What the wether's

owner finds is a stranger, arriving at the secluded

settlement. Here again a man on hunt discovers an

unsought find. Many hunters find what they seek,

however.

Harry March and Natty hunt together for a canoe

which Harry had earlier hidden in a hollow tree.

Harry knew the direction and he now led
on with the confident step of a man assured of his
object. After proceeding near a mile, March
stopped and began to cast about him with an
inquiring look, examining the different objects
with care. (The Deerslayer, II, 14)










But poor Harry is unable to find the hollow tree until

Natty indicates, "See; this is the spot you came to

find!" (15).

Natty hunts often. At the climactic moment when

Deerslayer has just slain his first human being, the

Mingo who will shortly bestow a new name on the hero,

Natty goes hunting for a rifle. "The piece was found

where its owner [the Mingo] had dropped it" (VII, 62),

and only after securing the weapon does Natty approach

his fallen foe. Soon again there is a hunt. Natty,

Judith, and Chingachgook hunt for the key to the chest

on the ark. Natty cannot find it, so he asks the Indian

to join in the search. Chingachgook immediately begins

to cast about for the hiding place, and all three are

"soon engaged in an anxious and spirited search,"

turning their "inquiries to those places that struck

them as ingenious hiding-places" (XII, 108). They

"examine" and "rummage" until Chingachgook suggests that

they look in the "coarse pocket" belonging to Hetty.

There the key is secreted.

One type of activity which is a type of search or

hunt is the well-established scouting action found in

all Indian tales. By whatever name it may be called, to

scout out or reconnoiter, investigate, get the lay of

the land, or to take a "look-see," this type of casting

about is a hunting act. Indians "sent out to










reconnoiter soon return to report their want of

success in making any discovery" (XVIII, 162) in The

Deerslayer. Others of their number check in an opposite

direction; "others had examined in different

directions." At the same time, Hetty hunts for an

Indian friend, but does not "find" her (163). Some of

the savages keep watch against their foes, two of them

constantly passing back and forth in "vigilance" against

a surprise attack. In three paragraphs in Chapter

XVIII, Cooper presents six different hunt or search

actions. None of these yields the desired end.

People ashore, hunting afoot or in conjunction with a

beast of burden, are subject to the sorts of physical

constraints that limit all land-bound peoples: they get

tired fairly soon. They must rest. Mimetic

characterization requires that fairly brief segments

only can be devoted to land searches or to land actions

such as chase, discussed below. After a relatively

brief time, all characters relying upon their bodies or

any corporeal body must either find what they seek, find

an acceptable substitute, or turn to other actions, such

as eating or sleeping. After these sorts of resting

activities, the hunting action may recommence or it may

not. Either way, in Cooper's tales land hunts are

actions of short duration.










Sea hunts, however, are another matter. People who

are aship have the physical capability to hunt for far

longer than those ashore. Searches of several hours

length are lengthy shore hunts, but ships' searches may

last for unremitting days, weeks, or even months.

In Afloat and Ashore, Miles Wallingford ships

aboard the Crisis under Captain Williams. This is the

sort of man who "is never so happy as when he is running

round the ocean in places where it is full of unknown

islands, looking for sandal wood and beche-la-mar!" (XI,

320). On this particular occasion, the captain wishes

to "double the Horn", which place is subjected to such

conflicting descriptions that no two mariners "seem to

have found it exactly alike." Also on this passage a

"tempest" commences. The mariners lose their reckoning,

and the captain attempts to get a sight of some sort of

land "as it would enable [them] to get some tolerable

accurate notions of position." None of the men

retains any hope of finding the passage they "aimed at."

For three full days, all hands search through the thick

weather, trying to locate some route to safety. "It is

not easy to make a landsman understand the embarassments

of" (323) such a situation, when the captain of a ship

does not know in which direction to sail in order to

find home. On the fourth day, they are blown into some

sort of passage through some islands which might be part










of Tierra del Fuego. The storm continues. On the

morning of the sixth day, the Crisis' crew realizes it

has "found a passage westward that actually led into the

ocean!" (327). Unfortunately, it is the Pacific; they

have passed "the Straits of Magellan without knowing

it!" (327).

For nearly a week, Captain Williams and his crew

hunt for the passage through which Williams, at least,

has already passed four times. Although the tempest

contributes to their inability to find the route, the

seekers continue to strain their eyes for the passage

whenever the weather allows them sufficient time to

hunt. Cooper wisely interspaces this extended hunting

action with fight action (man against his environment);

a minute recitation of six days' fruitless searching

would yield a poor narrative at best. People who hunt

or search when on a ship are not interesting to read

about when they are actively hunting: they look, but do

not see, as their ship moves through the water.

A more lengthy sea hunt is the one acted by Captain

Rowley, on the English frigate the Briton. Rowley's

orders are to "cruise three months" (XXIV, 418) in a

specified area of the Atlantic, searching for American

ships to inspect or French vessels to fight. Of course,

Cooper does not chronicle ninety weary days and nights

of heel-and-toe watches by the crew. His knowledge of










how to present a good tale precludes much more than the

briefest summary of the cruise: "More than two months

passed without the Briton's speaking, or even seeing, a

single sail!" While this hunt by the crew may well be

the greatest number of days devoted to this action in

all the Cooper canon, the one sentence summary of the

action itself--which is rendered in the negative--does

not offer an extended action sequence presentation.

Even when Cooper has the opportunity to present a

mimetic search of extended duration, as he does here, he

has the good sense not to weary the reader with one.

Characters often lose things or need things or

places they have not got. Most hungry characters in the

wilderness must devote much time to hunting for food.

All hunting generates action which is describable and

which may be of some narrative interest. However, hunt

action is not as major an action type as are journey or

quest actions. Most hunts are brief actions; long hunts

are typically presented in recapitulative fashion.

These three action types are similar in that they

all arise from internal promptings. The questing

character has the strongest personal compulsion to act.

His own evaluation of what is real and important to him

forces him to keep on acting in the attempt to gain

union with his quest object; the quester drives himself

unmercifully into action. He seems a most peculiar










individual to those characters who observe him. Unlike

the quester, the journeyer is a usual human type who

displays a universal action. While the journeyer may

act for any of several reasons--to return home, found a

home, escape, explore, or just keep in motion--his

action is familiar and his reason for acting logical.

Just so are the acts of the hunting or searching

character. His needs are usually ascertainable and

comprehendable and his acts are rational. All people

hunt and journey. One kind of journeyer, the questing

character, acts irrationally, but the actions he does

are describably human.

All three action types arising from internal

motivations are mimetic. Further, they provide both

brief and extended structures which Cooper uses to craft

effective narratives. Long journeys or brief hunts,

extended quests or fleeting searches, vignettes of

escape or voyages of exploration--all these acts shape

and direct Cooper's works. But it is not only the

inner-directed acts that generate motion; three outer-

directed action types contribute as effectively to the

structure of Cooper's tales.











Notes


1. Definitions from Webster's New Collegiate
Dictionary, 2d ed.

2. Janis P. Stout, The Journey Narrative in
American Literature (Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood
Press, 1983) 3.

3. Stout 247. Cooper is the first internationally
successful American author to employ journey action
effectively in his work. Many fictions by nearly all
subsequent American authors make good use of journey
action. This phenomenon illustrates both the apparently
inexhaustable relevance of this action for American
artists and audiences and also explains one reason why
Fenimore Cooper's fictions continue to appeal to modern
readers.

4. Leland S. Person, Jr., in "Cooper's
The Pioneers and Leatherstocking's Historical Function,"
Emerson Society Quarterly 25 (1979): 1-10, notes the
departure of Natty at the close of The Pioneers. "A
similar splitting up of the main cast recurs in each of
the Leatherstocking novels" (1). Journey is often used
in the final chapter of Cooper's works, not merely in
the Leatherstocking tales, leaving many narratives in
the same state of "motion" as they opened, albeit in a
different location sometimes.

5. Percy G. Adams, Travel Literature and the
Evolution of the Novel (Lexington: The University Press
of Kentucky, 1983) presents another study of travel
literature. In Chapter 5, Adams discusses what he
considers to be the six basic "movements" in literature:
1) The Journey, as found in Tom Jones
2) The Wandering, as found in Huckleberry Finn
3) The Quest, as found in Sir Gawain
4) The Pilgrimage, as found in Pilgrim's Progress
5) The Odyssey, as found in The Odyssey
6) The Going-Forth, as found in The Red Badge of
Courage
Adams does treat thematic concerns, motifs, and
character types; however, his thesis is broad and its
development is diffused. A study of Cooper's actions
yields but few insights when approached via the use of
Adams' ideas.


6. Stout 30.


1










7. Stout 31. Exploration is a primary activity of
the heroine in much Gothic literature. Often that
exploration is a quest for some object known or
surmised. Cooper's use of such action is limited, for
his romances do not follow the formula for the
established Gothic tale.

8. In the sense that Antarctica remained
unexplored until long after Cooper died, the exploratory
voyages by the crews of the two Sea Lions could be
labeled "Imaginary voyages" of sorts similar to that
found in Poe's Narrative of A. Gordon Pym (1838).
However, Cooper presents this exploration as a realistic
journey. This may be seen when the journey of the Sea
Lions is contrasted with the journey of John Goldencalf
in The Monikins or Mark woolston in The Crater. I treat
the "Imaginary voyage" later in this chapter.

9. Stout 31.

10. Stout 32.

11. Stout 33.

12. Stout 42.

13. Stout 45.

14. Stout 66.

15. Stout 68.

16. In 1836 Cooper offered the world his first
"Gleaning" from Europe. Since Cooper's avowed purpose
is not "story" in these works, it is not surprising that
his use of action should function in a much different
manner than it does in his tales. In the non-fiction,
the action of the travel leads directly to description
of picturesque scene or to idea. Cooper moves to the
proper place quickly and gets on with the static aspects
of his true purpose. While Cooper's "gleanings" utilize
action, they do not tell "tale." In Notions of the
Americans (1828) the return to home is to an American
home. As Cooper's fictions reveal, this return to an
American home is the "Return to Home" which was the most
congenial to this author.

17. This is a remarkably effective moment in the
tale. Lionel Lincoln, unbeknownst to himself, is
actually the son of Sir Lionel Lincoln, which personage
is this very Ralph himself. Ralph is later revealed to










be an escaped lunatic, Lionel has inherited a propensity
toward this mental dysfunction, and the narrative closes
with all the major characters either dead or fled the
nascent republic. The returns to "home" here lead to
insanity or to violent death. The doubled and redoubled
returns seem a most deft example of Cooper's art. The
ambivalence of historical Americans, torn between
loyalties both to England and her traditions and to
America and her potential, seems perfectly embodied in
the characters' many disordered movements and actions
and, most especially, in the apparent ability to return
to two homes. Of course, this ability actually
illustrates the inability to properly "return" to
either.

18. Stout 105.

19. Stout 111.

20. Different commentators on Cooper have
discussed the various "journeys to no end" which they
believe exist in Cooper's canon. George Dekker, in
James Fenimore Cooper: The American Scott (New York:
Barnes & Noble, 1967), sees in The Wing -and-Wing
parallels with a dual Ulysses figure (Ulysses of Homer
and Ulysses of Dante). He puts forth the idea of the
unending journey but ultimately skirts the issue.
Donald A. Ringe, in American Gothic: Imagination and
Reason in Nineteenth-Century Fiction (Lexington: The
University Press of Kentucky, 1982), describes Harvey
Birch of The Spy as "the Wandering Jew" (107). Leland
S. Person, Jr., in "Home as Found and the
Leatherstocking Series" (Emerson Society Quarterly, 27,
1981; 170-180) establishes the difference between
Natty's function as the mythic figure of "return to
origin for Americans" (their past), and contrasts his
function with the "nervous, rootless energy of the
American present" (174). He believes that the
Effinghams are ultimately unable to achieve satisfaction
on their "religious pilgrimage." He seems to indicate
their movement as being a sort of journey to no end, but
because his focus is not on the action itself, he moves
from matters of motion to matters of myth, leaving this
particular area unresolved.

21. Cooper's last reference to this legend may be
found in "The Lake Gun" (1850), a political allegory
which offers as the "Wandering Jew" a tree trunk which
purportedly has floated for ages about the surface of










Seneca Lake. Indian legend has it that this log is
actually an Indian chief, metamorphized for wicked
demagoguery.

22. Kay Seymour House, Cooper's Americans
(Columbus: Ohio State University Press, 1965) 123.

23. Philip Babcock Gove, The Imaginary Voyage in
Prose Fiction (New York: Arno Press, 1975).

24. Gove 87.

25. Gove 178.

26. Donald A. Ringe, Long Fiction of the American
Renaissance, ed. Paul McCarthy (Hartford: Transcendental
Books, 1974) 108.

27. George Dekker, James Fenimore Cooper: The
American Scott (New York: Barnes & Noble, 1967) 125.

28. Stout 247.

29. Peter Revell, Quest in Modern American Poetry
(Totowa, New Jersey: Vision Press, 1981) 7.

30. Stout 88.

31. Alexander Blackburn, The Myth of the Picaro
(Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press,
1979) 20.

32. Richard Bjornson, The Picaresque Hero in
European Fiction (Madison: The University of Wisconsin
Press, 1977) 7.

33. Stout 90.

34. Stout 88.

35. As House notes, Natty is part picaro, "like
Don Quixote" (307).

36. Warren S. Walker, James Fenimore Cooper: An
Introduction and Interpretation (New York: Barnes &
Noble, 1963) 41.

37. Daniel Peck, A World by Itself: The Pastoral
Moment in Cooper's Fiction (New Haven: Yale University
Press, 1977) 121.










38. At least, this is what the reader must assume
he says. Actually, through what is surely an
unfortunate typographical error, the great explorer's
words read "Laud to be God!" Only a Freudian critic or a
metacritic could assign the proper reading to the
passage.

39. Preface to The Pilot.

40. Cooper's habitual narrative closes with
marriage or the promise of immediate marriage and new
journey action. Married couples either occupy homes or
move directly toward attaining stable homes. Closing
journeys, which often balance the habitual opening
journey actions, take the journeyer toward certain
safety; quest action, such as lovers often engage in,
lead the quester into unanticipated scenes and dangers.

41. D. H. Lawrence, Studies in Classic American
Literature (London: Martin Secker, 1933) 51.















CHAPTER THREE

STALK, FIGHT, CHASE
AND JOURNEY AGAIN


"You remind me of the necessity of being in
motion. Adieu."

Miles Wallingford
(XV, 360)


Journey


The acts examined in Chapter One are internally-

motivated, or self-directed actions. The three main

externally-motivated, or other-directed actions are the

stalk, the fight or battle, and the chase. But to

begin a discussion of these, one must first return to

journey, for some journey types are clearly other-

directed.

Travelers making rendezvous may journey solely at

the direction of the other person. Messengers and

guides direct their courses according to dictates from

other people. Soldiers at all levels of command usually

move in response from their superiors. After the battle

is over, these soldiers may either regroup and advance

or retreat and disperse as a result of the actions of

the foe. Hostages, prisoners, and captives move solely










at the discretion of their guards. And any person,

ashore or--especially--afloat, may find himself

suddenly having to act solely in response to forces of

nature. The pioneer fleeing a raging forest fire

performs other-directed acts as surely as does the

boater traversing a rapids or the mariner harried,

buffeted, or shipwrecked by a tempest.

In The Last of the Mohicans Cora and Alice spend the

entire book, save for their brief interlude at Fort

William Henry, in movements directed by either Natty,

their father, the Indians, or--in Alice's case--a

husband-to-be. There is merit in the claim that

Cooper's heroines' movements are overwhelmingly

controlled by a mate, a father, a brother, or a

designated male agent. A vast number of Cooper's

females are passed through their narratives like
1
"Fortune's Footballs," either as actual captives or as

apparent ones. All of Cooper's well-bred and dutiful

heroines are bound to obey, to attend, and--if the male

authority figure wishes to move--to follow their men.

In this sense, the women are hostages to their

upbringing and to their emotions or vows. Such females

are actually captives of their author's visualization of

"proper" female duty and conduct. The refined heroine










should always "live out of herself, as it might be, and

in the existence of those whom she esteemed or loved"

(Miles Wallingford; VI, 295).

But the "captivity narrative" as it is usually

described is a specific narrative form. Beginning with

the 1682 publication of Mary Rowlandson's own tale of

captivity, this narrative was a distinct American type.

After the latter part of the eighteenth century, the

original form transformed, according to Richard Slotkin,
2
from a "fearful" narration to an "imaginative" one.

While Louise K. Barnett gives a later date for the

transformation, she agrees that the original captivity

narrative was finished as a force before Cooper began to
3
write. The transmogrified narration of captivity was a

tale of "overt fiction in which the horrors and travails

of the frontier experience were combined with a

complicated romantic plot of English origin. In this

amalgam, a set of foreign and artificial conventions was

superimposed on the basically real and indigenous
4
captivity events." She calls this later form the

"frontier romance" and notes that it was influenced by

Scott. Both Slotkin and Barnett agree that Cooper

offers well-developed examples of this later form,

Barnett finding The Last of the Mohicans to be "an

excellent paradigm of the multiple captivity plot" (62)










and Slotkin discussing both The Prairie and The

Deerslayer in his Chapter 13, "The Leatherstocking

Myth."

In the "romantic" or "imaginative" captivity

narrative several necessary characters appear

1) A maiden, passive
2) A male, young and white
3) A frontiersman, older and the ally of #2
4) A good Indian, friend to 1-3
5) A bad Indian, enemy to 1-4
6) A white villain, enemy to 1-4 and
possibly to 5
7) (Occasionally) An Indian maiden, good.

Cooper offers several examples of romantic captivity

narratives, but all of them display variations, of some

sort, from the unadorned schema. Inez Middleton is held

by white, not Indian, captors in The Prairie; although

the six requisite character niches are all occupied, the

function of the characters is not typical of the genre.

In The Wept of Wish-ton-wish the captive is the Indian,

Conanchet, and the captors are the whites, the

Heathcotes. Conanchet's six month captivity in the

white community is devoted to attempts by the Puritans

to convert him to Christianity. In due time, a young

female Heathcote, Ruth, is abducted by members of the

escaped Conanchet's tribe. Although no part of her

captivity narrative proper is directly presented, more

than a decade after Conanchet's escape it is discovered

that he has married the girl, now thoroughly Indianized










and known as Narra-mattah. Soon after her return to her

white home, Conanchet is killed and she dies. Here, the

several characters fill several different roles as the

plot complications develop.

In The Pathfinder Mable Dunham is, for a time, a

captive within a blockhouse. She has full freedom of

movement within the structure, but is at the mercy of

the surrounding Indians if she moves outside. All seven

of the possible character roles are filled in this text

and all the characters assume their correct niches. It

is the captivity itself which is atypical. Mable is

simultaneously free and captive. In The Redskins an

even more unusual captivity narrative unfolds. The

captives are white, but they are men: the older white

ally, Uncle Ro, and a minister. The "Injins" are white

men, wearing blackface. The captivity is brief, but

active. Ro and Rev. Warren are whisked by dearborn to

the local meeting house while Mary and Hugh (#'s 1 & 2)

follow volitionally. This deformed "captivity

narrative" serves as an excellent comment on the

deranged society which Cooper presents in the tale.

The Last of the Mohicans, is Cooper's masterful

treatment of a true captivity narrative. In it, all the

requisite categories are filled, sometimes several times

over, and the actions are representative of the genre.

Cooper handles the several conventions of the type










effectively, including one of the "foreign and

artificial" conventions which Scott bequeathed: the

characteristic young, white, male hero whose essence of

"proper conduct" appears to be the ability to maintain a

supreme "self control under trying circumstances". Such

a passive young man is notable for his inactivity.

"The hero's action was confined to an ideal that all but
5
prohibited activity," one critic notes. This passive,

or "wavering," hero receives, rather than does the

action. The meaningful action, given to Natty Bumppo or

Harvey Birch or Guert Ten Eyke, rushes around the hero

or bears him up on the general swell of movement. All

too infrequently does the hero step forward to do

anything volitional.

Like the passive Cooperian heroine, who seems to

live only "out of herself," the smitten hero often is

immobilized by his passion and seemingly paralyzed by

the proximity of his beloved. The adoring hero,

enmeshed in "the weakness of passion," must submit "to

its power, like feebler-minded and less resolute men

becoming little better than the vulgar herd under its

influence" (Wing-and-Wing; XXVI, 351). The hero in love

is a changed man. From "a very resolute he [becomes] a

very irresolute sort of person" (The Oak Openings; XIII,

204). Cooper believes that, "When a man is thoroughly










in love, he is quite apt to be fit for very little else

but to urge his suit" (XV, 242).

The "Fortune's Football" female and her "feeble"

lover are the two perfect types to take center stage in

captivity narratives, for their roles call for the sort

of passivity that characterizes a proper captive. In

The Last of the Mohicans infantile Alice Munro and

anxious Duncan Heyward (#'s 1 & 2) display archetypal

behaviors and obtain the proper reward for their right

acts. She is a captive; he is captured when he attempts

to rescue her; they eventually marry. Natty, of course,

is the perfect older frontiersman, ally of the young

man. The good Indian who lives is Chingachgook; the

good Indian who dies is his son, Uncas, the "last" of

the Mohicans. The bad Indian is Magua. The white

villain is the French commander, the Marquis of

Montcalm, whose dastardly machinations precipitate the

Fort William Henry "massacre." The role of "Indian

maiden, good" is not here filled, although Dew of June

(The Pathfinder) illustrates Cooper's knowledge of her

type and his ability to utilize the character

effectively. In The Last of the Mohicans, either

Chingachgook's deceased but beloved Wah-ta-wah (The

Deerslayer), the undifferentiated chorus of savage

virgins that eulogizes Cora, or the "tainted" Cora

herself fill the supporting female role when requisite.









The action of the captivity portion of the narrative

is exciting; the plot develops according to the plan.

However, in The Last of the Mohicans, Cooper writes a

captivity narrative with a difference. The difference

is that this time the formula works as it should. The

formulas exist because they offer a familiar and

accepted method of presentation to author and reader.

Most of the time, the narratives produced by formula are

no better than they ought to be, "familiar" and

"accepted." But sometimes a good author can pen a

formula tale that transcends its genre. Cooper's The

Last of the Mohicans is one such work. It is not just a

"good" story; it is actually "excellent."

Even when Cooper does not choose to write narratives

about captivity, he often writes narratives which

include action of captivity as a portion of the tale.

Old Major Effingham, in The Pioneers is literally

carried through his tale, a captive, of sorts, to his

own senility and physical disability. Even Natty

Bumppo may "travel" solely in the arms of other people:

"As soon as the body of Deerslayer was withed in bark

sufficiently to create a lively sense of helplessness,

he was literally carried to a young tree, and bound

against it" (The Deerslayer; XXVIII, 263). When Natty

moves in response to the dictates of other people,

though, he usually is able to stand on his own two feet.










Arriving at the fort in The Last of the Mohicans, and

"under the custody of a French officer Hawkeye was

dejected. and his arms were even bound" (XV, 89).

As an old man in The Pioneers Natty is taken as a

"prisoner" from the smouldering ashes of his hut and

marched into Templeton to be jailed until his trial.

"Presently the Leather-Stocking made his appearance,

ushered into the criminal's bar under the custody of two

constables" (XXXIII, 733). After justice has been done,

Natty is placed in the stocks. The aged trapper Bumppo

of The Prairie, along with Paul and Ellen "prisoners" of

Indians, must move when compelled "by a mandate to

change their positions" (IV, 237).

Characters who journey on the water may, at any

moment, find themselves unexpected "hostages" to natural

forces. Even so small and calm a body of water as the

Glimmerglass may transport the unwilling traveler to

unexpected locales. Natty falls asleep in a drifting

canoe. When he awakens, he finds his craft has "drifted

twice the expected distance; and [has] approached

so near the base of the mountains that it must

inevitably touch [the shore, inhabited by inimical

Indians], .. for the drift had amounted to miles in

the course of the night" (The Deerslayer; VII, 58). If

so brief a span on so small an area as this can










transport the drifting mariner "miles," how much greater

the unwilling journeyer may be carried by an angry sea.

When, as a seaman says in The Red Rover, mariners

find "the sea getting up in an unaccountable manner"

which may "threaten to engulf all before it" (XV, 331),

even a skillful captain may find his craft's movements

meeting "neither the wishes of his own impatience nor

the exigencies of the moment" (XVI, 337). When Captain

Wilder asks, "Does the ship mind her helm at all?" the

sailor responds, "Not an inch, sir" (337). These

mariners, at the mercy of "an air that apparently teemed

with a hundred hurricanes" (XVI, 338), find their

strenuous efforts too futile "to keep the despoiled hull

from becoming prey to the greedy waters" (XVII, 341).

As "the water rushed into the vortex, everything within

its influence" yields to the "gaping whirlpool" (349).

The characters who survive find themselves adrift on a

"blind and watery path" (XVIII, 350) in a little boat

blown about by an "unwelcome wind" (351). They are

threatened with a journey "across the whole Atlantic"

which would force them away from "that land it is so

important to reach" (352). And even when a rescuing

ship is sighted, their prospects for reaching the craft

are not assured; as Wilder states, The gale may

prevent--in short, many is the vessel that is seen










at sea" (XVIII, 354), but that it proves impossible to

approach.

A list of Miles Wallingford's very many

captivitiess," as recounted in Afloat and Ashore and

Miles Wallingford, could serve as a kind of study of how

an active and self-reliant man may be at the mercy of

nearly every portion of his world. Miles' first ship,

the John, wrecks because Captain Robbins is an

incompetent commander. The craft that rescues Miles is

bound for Philadelphia. Miles, forced by two men whose

desires differ from his own and under the authority of

the two, is captive to his superiors. Miles is held a

literal captive by Pacific Indians, French privateers,

British sailors-of-the-line, French privateers (again),

British sailors (again), and an American sheriff's

deputy who arrests him for his debts and marches him off

to prison. Miles, fated to journey during troubled

times, is captive to political enemies and democratic

functionaries. Miles is often becalmed and battered by

storms; he is cast away twice (from the Tigris' boat off

Cape May and from the Dawn), driven severely off course

twice (the Cape Horn attempt aboard the Crisis and off

Ireland in the Dawn), and repeatedly buffeted by

contrary winds. He is captive to nature's whims.

Miles is also a captive to society. Miles fears to

ask his beloved Lucy to marry him when she is wealthier










than he and moving in a "set" superior to his own

station. Finally, Miles is a captive to his own

emotions, rushing back to the sea to escape his sorrow

after his sister's death and shipping out desperately

after each supposed rejection by Lucy, whose true

affections toward himself he misunderstands repeatedly.

Perhaps in this way he is a captive to his own

stupidity; at any rate, he is assuredly trammeled by

myriad internal and external captors in both the natural

and the social spheres. While Miles' may be a

noteworthy series of captivities, it is certainly not an

atypical series.

As Mercedes of Castile illustrates, even as fine a

mariner as Christopher Columbus travels always at the

mercy of the elements. Inauspicious calms hamper his

progress, unpredictable winds cause a loss of reckoning

and an uncertainty about the proper course, unfavorable

winds prevent landings, and a near-hurricane drives

Columbus away from Spain, his proposed destination, and

toward Portugal.

When flood or fire, avalanche or volcano, ice or

bison charge come hurtling out of the environment,
6
people hurry to move away. Ashore, travelers are not

as often "captives" of nature; landsmen do move because

of natural threats, but only infrequently as "hostages"

in the same way that a floating character is physically


~










transported "by" the water. The only analogous movement

Cooper offers for the "shorebound" character is to be

found on horseback, and the analogue is one Cooper

specifically recognized.

"Two vehicles dashing along a highway, with

frightened and runaway teams, would not present a sight

one half as terrific" (Afloat and Ashore; XXV, 451) as

do two storm-tossed ships running before the tempest.

When even so fine a horseman as the Indian may have

trouble, as Hard-Heart in The Prairie does when the

grasslands are ablaze, how could it not be that white

men, and females most especially, would be equine

hostages, propelled unwilling through space. In The

Pioneers the "captives" are asleigh. When Richard

mishandles the team, the confused horses, "dancing up

and down with that ominous movement which threatens a

sudden and uncontrollable start," plunge in such a way

that two riders are "thrown" and Richard is pitched

"some fifteen feet" (IV, 568) through the air into a

snowbank.

In Satanstoe the combination of a sleigh ride

behind matched blacks and a partial thaw followed by a

snap cold enough to render the surface of the Hudson

River apparently stable creates a memorable late night

return from a dinner engagement. Corny Littlepage and

Anneke Mordaunt end up in a horseless sleigh perched on










a sinking block of ice, battered by the swift currents

of the Hudson.

The horrific "grating or grinding of the ice .

sounded like the rushing of heavy winds, or the

incessant roaring of a serf. The ragged

barriers set slowly but steadily down and the

whole river seemed to be in motion" (XVI, 275).

Past the couple, "like the tempest," rushes an empty

sleigh, its horses "maddened by terror," that rolls and

tumbles across the broken ice. The two scramble up a

mound of piled ice as "a torrent" of water submerges

their previous perch. This "floating island" (XVII,

276) of theirs shoots "into an eddy, and turning slowly

round" (278) bears them away from the shore. They pick

their way across the "confused pile," waiting for "any

contact with the shore" that might offer them a means to

safety. "Several times did it appear that [the]

island was on the point of touching .and as often

did it incline aside" (280). A "small cake of ice .

floating in between" eventually provides a "bridge"

(281) to land. Behind them, the Hudson is "chaos

rushing headlong between the banks" (282). A house, a

complete bridge "of some size," and a sloop flash past

"with fearful rapidity" as the escaped captives turn

homeward through the snow.










In many ways, the journeying character may move at

the direction of some external force. Save in a fully

developed captivity narrative, most other-directed

journeys are action segments of relatively brief

duration. While they continue, the actions forced upon

journeyers may well be intensely important to the

characters who are compelled to move. However, most

characters in Cooper's fictions captured and controlled

by external forces effect escapes from their situations

with rapidity. Of course, true captivity narratives

offer lengthy action during which the captive is unable

to escape. As some of Cooper's characters show, the

lengthiest captivities are emotional. Such captivities

are demonstrably self-imposed and are as "self-directed"

as can be any human activity.



Stalk: To Approach By Stealth


"Here are the Mohicans and I on one end of the
trail, and rely on it, we find the other though
they should be a hundred leagues asunder!"

The Last of the Mohicans
(XVIII, 112)


All stalk, fight, and chase action in Cooper's works

is other-directed; such acts mandate a dual component.

The opposition is usually of man with man or with some

sort of natural being or force, such as animals or fire










or flood. While it is perfectly possible for anthropo-

morphized animals or personified forces alone to engage

in conflicts, examples of this type of action are not
7
found in Cooper's works. Cooper crafts narratives

which describe real beings in conflict with other

humans, natural forces, or creatures; occasionally

nature does produce conflicts between purely natural

forces, but all such opposition are rendered through
8
the consciousness of a human mind. With these three

actions, Cooper has twice the narrative possibilities as

he had with quest or hunt or most forms of journey.

With stalk and fight and chase, the author can give the

point of view either to the pursuer or to the prey. The

author can even alternate between the two.

While search or hunt, as Chapter One defines it,

depicts actions done by characters who wish to fill a

certain lack in themselves, stalk describes actions

characters do when a particular external goal has been

identified and is being approached. The stalker engages

in certain movements which the hunter does not exhibit.

The stalker is always quiet. The stalker uses his

environment as cover for himself, creeping through tall

grasses or squatting behind rocks or flitting from tree

to tree or submerging himself beneath water. The

stalker moves in response to the actions of his prey; if

the prey looks in the predator's direction, the stalker










stops and seeks to hide. when the prey's attention goes

elsewhere, the stalker moves again quietly toward his

goal.

A stalk is often action of fairly brief duration.

As may be expected, Natty Bumppo stalks and is stalked

throughout his life. Near the opening of The

Deerslayer, Hurry Harry and Natty hear a noise in the

forest near the canoe in which they float.

Both the adventurers started, and each
extended a hand toward his rifle. .
"Put your paddle in the water, and send the
canoe to that log; I'll land, and cut off the
creature's retreat up the p'int, be it a Mingo or
be it only a musk-rat."
As Hurry complied, Deerslayer was soon on the
shore, advancing into the thicket with a
moccasined foot, and a caution that prevented the
least noise. In a minute he was in the center of
a narrow strip of land, and moving slowly down
toward its end, the bushes rendering extreme
watchfulness necessary. Just as he reached the
center of the thicket, the dry twigs cracked
again. Hurry heard these sounds also, and,
pushing the canoe off into the bay, he seized his
rifle to watch the result. A breathless minute
succeeded, after which a noble buck walked out of
the thicket. (III, 27)

The prey may either become aware of the stalk, as

this "noble buck" does, or it may remain in ignorance of

the approaching stalker, as do the stalked creatures in

the opening chapter of The Pathfinder. Charles Cap,

Mabel, Arrowhead, and his Indian wife are traversing the

woods when they sight smoke from a domestic fire, and,

unable to "determine whether the sign that others were

in their vicinity was the harbinger of good or evil" (I, 298),










they decide to "go toward the fire, and ascertain who

had lighted it" (300). Arrowhead, scrutinizing the

woods as intently as "a trained pointer, while he waits

his master's aim" (298), leads the party. "For the

first half mile no other caution beyond a rigid silence

was observed; but as the party drew nearer to the spot

where the fire was known to be, much greater care became

necessary" (300). As they move forward their footsteps

"gradually became lighter," their scrutiny "more

vigilant," and their bodies "more carefully concealed"

by the "rustic columns or trees" (301).

The stalkers decide Mabel should approach the three

men who sit around the fire "eating their grub" (301).

So, Mabel advances, alone,

toward the group seated near the fire. Although
the heart of the girl beat quick, her step was
firm, and her movements, seemingly, were without
reluctance. A death-like silence reigned in the
forest, for they, toward whom she approached, were
too much occupied in appeasing that great natural
appetite, hunger, to avert their looks for an
instant from the important business in which they
were all engaged. (302)

When Mable steps on a dry stick, Natty and his

companions rise to their feet to greet her. Here Natty

is the object of a friendly stalk, but he is often

involved in an inimical one.

A stalk may be of extremely brief duration. In The

Pioneers Natty is chatting with travelers. Suddenly he

"held up his finger with an expressive gesture for










silence. He then moved softly along the margin of the

road, keeping his eyes steadfastly fixed on the branches

of a pine. When he had obtained such a position as he

wished, he stopped, and as soon as the rifle bore

on the victim drew his trigger" (I, 556).

In The Last of the Mohicans Natty, Uncas, and

Chingachgook, resting in the forest and feeling some

hunger, discuss the local situation. Unexpectedly,

Natty observes "the biggest antlers I have seen this

season, moving the bushes below the hill" (III, 19).

They decide not to hazard a rifle shot, so "Uncas threw

himself on the ground and approached the animal with

wary movements. When within a few yards of the cover,

he fitted an arrow to his bow with the utmost care"

(19). In an instant, the buck falls.

This is the stalk stripped to its essentials. Two

parties must be proximate, either through serendipitous

chance or directed action. The stalker must identify

its prey through sensory input, such as sight or sound

or smell. The aggressor then responds physically,

moving surreptitiously to approach.

The stalk in The Pathfinder leads to a friendly
9
meeting and a resultant journey. The stalk in The

Last of the Mohicans leads to conflict and a sudden

death. Stalk, as will be discussed in Chapter III, is

often an action which begins a chain of events.










The discussion of action by recourse to such rigid

categories as the six delineated here naturally leads to

some problems of classification. The tracking or

trailing of prey illustrates this point. "Following a

trail" is a demonstrably other-directed action. But

sometimes it is all but impossible to determine if

"trailing" be stalk action or chase action. In both

groups of action, the pursuer has a clear focus on his

object, either through sight, sound, or with recourse to

a tangible proof of passage. While, if the point of

view is helpful, some instances of stalk present clear

proof that the prey knows itself to be in danger, at

other times the extent of the prey's knowledge cannot be

known. Surely, the tracker on the trail of an unwary

antagonist is stalking. The movements of two opponents,

both of whom are known to each other, is chasing. The

actions which fall in between the two categories are the

difficult ones to label, as the following example from

Satanstoe illustrates.

Corny, Susquesus, Guert, and Jaap know there to be

hostile Indians in the woods around Mooseridge, the

Littlepage homestead. As soon as the party ascertains

that their hut is unoccupied, the whites and Jaap enter

the structure while Susquesus, a friendly Indian, casts

about for signs in the woods. He finds evidence of the

enemy. After a meal, the men decide they are probably


i










as safe spending the night where they are as attempting

to travel through the dark woods. They secure the door.

During the night Susquesus wakens Corny, and the two

slip out into the woods to listen. Hearing a chilling

cry, they attempt to locate the origin of the sound;

and, when they near the place they believe to be the

correct one, they stop and select "the dark shadows of

two or three young pines .. where, by getting within

their low branches, [the two men] are completely

concealed from any eye" (XXV, 418). Agonized groans

echo through the night. When day finally breaks,

Susquesus uses "the greatest caution in looking around

before he [leaves] cover peeping through such

openings as offered" (421). A bloody corpse meets their

gaze. Susquesus again reads the signs on the forest

floor, noting the traces left by their foes. When the

two arrive at the hut again, they take a "long and

distrustful survey of the forest" before they venture a

close approach. When the news of the bloody night's

deeds has been discussed, the four men, wishing to

contact some allies whom they know to be nearby but whom

they cannot signal to with a rifle shot because the

sound would alert their foes, set off through the woods,

their "senses keenly on the alert" and avoiding

"everything like a cover that might conceal ambush"

(426).










Twenty more pages of description follow. The four

continue to move in response to their enemy, but not in

any clearly identifiable manner. The party covers miles

of ground, and never sights the first Indian, besides

Susquesus. The stalk movement is protracted in

Satanstoe, but it is not very well focused. What

Susquesus learns from his reading of tracks is not very

helpful, nor is the action the party takes very

meaningful. while a "proper" tracker may learn much

from examination of the "spoor," most characters never

notice the "trace" at all, and many who do examine the

"sign" fail to understand what they have seen. Many

stalks begin as track readings; many stalks abort before

the characters have the chance to frame a proper

response to the trail. But, like stalk proper, a good

reading of the trail may lead to a closing of the

distance between two parties. Both actions can offer

entries into other forms of action.


Fight: A Struggle, Contest, Contention,
Competition, or War


"The battle is not always to the strong,
neither is the race to the swift."

The Pilot
(XIV, 80)


The nomenclature for fight action is diverse,

probably both because human beings engage in so many










types of fights and at so many levels and also because

the human species is so aware of and so interested in

such conflicts. When the strife includes many

individuals whose actions are centrally ordered, the

conflict is named a war and the resultant action labeled

a battle, an offensive, a skirmish, or, perhaps, an

"action" or a "brush." Actually, for the purposes of

fiction, "battles" during "war" are practically never

described; the language cannot convey the experience and

the human mind cannot properly encompass the magnitude

of the action. A recitation of events in any war leads

invariably to history, and that is not the concern of
10
the storyteller who wishes to spin a "good tale."

Cooper very often does make use of a war as the

containing framework for a narrative. Beginning with

inclusion of the Napoleonic Wars in Precaution and

continuing right through the canon to The Oak Openings

(1848), which includes a peripheral conflict generated

by the War of 1812, Cooper's texts utilize historical

warfare. The conflicts he treats span a period from

1740, the year Natty in The Deerslayer is involved in

action preparatory to the French and Indian War (1754-

1763), to 1848, the year Stephen Spike in Jack Tier

smuggles gunpowder to the enemy during the Mexican War.

In just about half of the tales Cooper wrote, war or

rumor of war contributes to the depicted action.










Cooper treated the global war which might best be

called the British "War for Empire" (1754-1763) in The

Wept of Wish-Ton-Wish, Satanstoe, The Pathfinder, The

Last of the Mohicans, and The Deerslayer. In America,

the actions of this war are called "The French and

Indian War." The continental European actions resulting

simultaneously are known as "The Seven Years' War." In

The Red Rover Cooper utilizes a setting not strictly

American, so the war is known by the latter name in this

tale. The war he treated next most frequently in his

fictions is the American Revolutionary War (1775-1783).

Lionel Lincoln, The Spy, and Wyandotte utilize the

conflict ashore and The Pilot asea. The "Napoleonic

Wars" (1805-1814) provide battle action in Precaution,

Miles Wallingford, and The Wing-and-Wing. The 1745

conflict of the "Jacobite Rebellion" underlies The Two

Admirals; the "quasi-war" between the United States and

France supports much action in Afloat and Ashore.

When most effectively woven into the texture of a

tale, battle action provides a gripping focus. The

outcome of battles often determines the fate of the

characters. The scope of the conflict augments the

purely individual importance of the actors and lends a

more universal interest to the actions of the specific

players. Even when the battle action is not integral to

the text, it allows Cooper to add excitement and action










which, although rather peripheral, is mimetic and

serviceable.

In Precaution, which offers Cooper's first use of

battle, the struggle is of this second, relatively

peripheral, type. Cooper does not have recourse to war

until his penultimate chapter, for the previous 47

chapters have treated "matters of the heart." Perhaps

the author himself felt his text needed a less

restricted field as it neared its conclusion; he

switches his focus to war. The Napoleonic conflict,

"which for a time threw the peace of the world into the

scale of fortune," provides action to conclude Cooper's

first narrative. After all the birth mystery plots have

been unraveled and the numerous marriages have

transpired, Cooper turns to war.

Napoleon had commenced those daring and
rapid movements, which for a time threw the peace
of the world into the scale of fortune, and which
nothing but the interposition of a ruling
Providence could avert from their threatened
success. As the th dragoons wheeled into a
field already deluged with English blood, on the
heights of Quatre Bras, the eye of its gallant
colonel saw a friendly battalion falling beneath
the sabers of the enemy's cuirassiers. The word
was passed, the column opened, the sounds of the
quivering bugle were heard for a moment above the
roar of the cannon and the shouts of the
combatants; the charge, sweeping like a whirlwind,
fell heavily on those treacherous Frenchmen, who
to-day had sworn fidelity to Louis, and to-morrow
intended lifting their hands in allegiance to his
rival.
"Spare our life in mercy," cried an officer,
already dreadfully wounded, who stood shrinking
from the impending blow of an enraged Frenchman.










An English dragoon dashed at the cuirassier, and
with one blow severed his arm from his body.
"Thank God," sighed the wounded officer,
sinking beneath the horses' feet.
His rescuer threw himself from the saddle,
and raising the fallen man inquired into his
wounds. It was Pendennyss [the hero], and it was
Egerton [an acquaintance]. (XXXXVIII, 717-18)

Here, with Cooper's first use of battle, are found

the general characteristics of his habitual treatment

of this action. A general, panoramic sweep over the

setting is offered. The general rapidly gives way to a

particularized vignette of local action. Conversation

usually ensues, amidst the frenzy. A few paragraphs

later, Cooper offers his second battle; this time he

dwells on the sentimental hero and so avoids any

description of real action, save for the mounting of a

horse.

As the opening cannon of the enemy gave the
signal for the commencing conflict, Pendennyss
mounted his charger with a last thought on his
distant wife and gave the remainder of the
day to duty.
Who has not heard of the events of that
fearful hour, on which the fate of Europe hung as
it were suspended in the scale? On one side
supported by the efforts of desperate resolution,
guided by the most consummate art; and on the
other defended by a discipline and enduring
courage almost without a parallel.
The indefatigable Blucher arrived, and the
star of Napoleon sunk.
Pendennyss threw himself from his horse, on
the night of the eighteenth of June with the
languor that follows unusual excitement, and
mental thanksgiving that this bloody work was at
length ended. (XXXXVIII, 718)










Cooper relegates all of the action to Blucher's

arrival, neglecting to give even one battlefield act to

Pendennyss. The nascent author disposes of the Battle

of Waterloo, for so this lifeless fray was, with the

phrase "the star of Napoleon sunk." Yet, the basic

pattern remains. The central character moves into the

background as the battle scene is offered in large

scale. Once the large action is met ("Blucher

arrived"), Cooper shifts the focus to a close-up on the

main character. Even in this faltering delineation,

Cooper uses this structure.

In Cooper's next published work, The Spy, the battle

scenes are well-developed throughout. Here is the first

narrative where Cooper "found his voice," and, from

Introduction to conclusion, the voice tells of war.

"The dispute between England and the United States of

America, though not strictly a family quarrel, had many

of the features of a civil war," Cooper relates, in the

"Introduction" (443). To conclude the narrative, Cooper

offers more war. "It was thirty-three years after .

that an American army was once more arrayed against the

troops of England; but the scene was transformed from

the banks of the Hudson to those of the Niagara"

(XXXV, 653).

A young Captain Wharton Dunwoody and a nameless old

man meet coincidentally just before battle. Of course,


1










the old man is Harvey Birch, the titular hero. Before

Dunwoody has the opportunity to ascertain Birch's true

identity, the men are "interrupted by sudden and heavy

explosions of artillery, which were immediately followed

by continued volleys of small-arms, and in a few minutes

the air was filled with the tumult of a warm and well-

contested battle" (655).

The men move toward the American camp, which is a

scene of activity.

Everything in the American camp announced an
approaching struggle. At a distance of a few
miles, the sound of the cannon and musketry was
heard above the roar of the cataract. The troops
were soon in motion, and a movement made to
support the division of the army which was already
engaged. The summit of [a nearby] hill was
crowned with the cannon of the British, and in the
flat beneath was the remnant of Scott's gallant
brigade, which for a long time had held an unequal
contest with distinguished bravery. A new line
was interposed, and one column of the Americans
directed to charge up the hill. During the
last of these struggles, the ardor of the youthful
captain [Dunwoody] urged him to lead his men
some distance in advance, to scatter a daring
party of the enemy. He succeeded. (XXXV, 655-656)

Immediately after the battle, Captain Dunwoody hunts for

the old man, finds his body, reads the paper in the tin

box the corpse grasps, and discovers Birch's true

identity. One further sentence closes the tale.

Here in The Spy and, for the most part, in all of

Cooper's succeeding narratives, the movement from

general battle action to particular functions

effectively and is presented intelligently. The actions


_1




Full Text

PAGE 1

ACTION IN FENIMORE COOPER'S TALES By MARANDA MAZUR HUNTER LONGINO A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 1987 l/

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Copyright 1987 by Maranda Mazur Hunter Longino

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ABSTRACT CHAPTERS ONE TWO THREE FOUR FIVE SIX TABLE OF CONTE NT S INTRODUCTION. Notes. JOURNEY, QUEST, AND HUNT Journey .. Quest. Hunt Notes. STALK, FIGHT, CHASE, AND JOURNEY AGAIN. Journey. Stalk. Fight. Chase. Notes. CHAINS AND LAYERS. Movement Chains Layers Notes LIONEL LINCOLN Notes. HOME AS REFOUND. The American Return. The American Urn Notes ....... iii V 1 3 5 5 33 52 62 67 67 81 88 108 125 128 128 141 165 189 192 23 5 238 238 260 291

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SEVEN THE OAK OPENINGS ... The Symbo l ic Open i ngs. The Author As Actor / Act-er Notes. . . EIGHT CONCLUSION BIBLIOGRAPHY .... BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH iv 296 3 07 34 0 35 2 36 2 367 38 0

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Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Gr a du ate Sc hool of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy ACTION IN FENIMORE COOPER'S TALES BY MARANDA MAZUR HUNTER LONGINO August 1987 Chairman: John B. Pickard Major Department: English This dissertation examines the action in the extended fictions of James Fenimore Cooper. While Cooper's use of action is undenied, no thorough stud y of these actions has been made. This paper describes the types of actions in Cooper's fictions, explains the basic action ordering structures of the texts, and illustrates the significance of Cooper's use of action in his romances. Three of Cooper's primary actions are internally motivated: journey, quest, and search or hunt. His other three primary actions ar i se from external motivations: fight or battle, stalk, and chase. Motion, as distinct from action, is non-static narration suggested or mandated by conventions assoc i ated wit h the narrative format itself. V

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Motion and actions are structured two wa y s. Serial structure yields "chains" of action, and synchronous structure produces "layers." Chained structures offer "place centered" narratives, which illustrate Cooper's basic conceptualization that stor y unfolds in a scene analogously to the way a drama unfolds on a stage. Layered structures produce "act centered" narratives, which vivify Cooper's belief that actions tell "the truth" about human existence. Both action ordering structures yield viable narratives. The various actions and structures of three representative Cooperian texts are examined. Lionel Lincoln, an "early work," shows how the characters' actions undercut their narrative roles. The two volume set from Cooper's "middle" period, Homeward Bound and Horne as Found, reveals how this author's characteristic --doubling conveys his meanings. The Oak Openings, a "late work," illustrates how Cooper's symbols, including his use of symbolic actions, operate within one of his unfortunately misjudged narratives. As this study shows, Cooper's literary capabilities are habitually undervalued because his focus upon and utilization of action is generally unexamined. Cooper's artistic achievement is better appreciated when the actions animating his texts are understood. vi

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CHAPTER ONE INTRODUCTION "You will establish your reputation for activ i t y forever." Lionel Lincoln (X, 271) If not for "ever," J. Fenimore Cooper did establ i s h a reputation for longer than any other American writer of tales, and the reputation is certainly for "activity" in these tales. According to Edgar Allan Poe, the ta l e 1 Cooper tells is a "succession of events." According to William Cullen Bryant, Cooper's narratives are like ships which fill the reader with delight as they pursue 2 their courses "at will, over the waters." According to Francis Parkman, Cooper's greatest characters "move and act ... with all the truth and 3 energy of real life." Spiller finds Cooper to be "a man of action rather than of mind" and the works to be 4 reflections of the man. Cooper "knew the art of. 5 movement," says Phelps. Lewis speaks of Cooper's "g r ea t 6 surge of motion"; House believes some of Cooper's 7 characters can only be known "by their actions"; 1 P ec k

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2 finds Cooper's narrative structure "ordere d on t h e b as is 8 of constant motion"; Franklin belie v es the l asting significance of Cooper's novels derives fro m th e ir 9 energy." This dissertation will examine some of the 10 "energetic" portions of Cooper's works. While Cooper's use of action is undenied, no thoroug h study of these actions has been made. This paper describes the types of actions in Cooper's fictions, explains the basic action ordering structures of the texts, an d illustrates the significance of Cooper's use of actio n in his romances. Chapter One defines three actions in Cooper's fictions which spring from basically internal motivations: journey, quest, and search or hunt. Chapter Two discusses three actions which have their inception in basically external sources: fight or battle, stalk, and chase. Chapter Three examines two ways Cooper structures his actions; serial structure yields "chains" of action, and synchronous structure produces "layers." Chapter Four examines Lionel Lincoln, an "early work" by this author, and s ho ws how the characters' actions undercut their narrative r o l es. Chapter Five offers a reading of the "doubled" act ion s and aspects of Homeward Bound and Home as Found a nd discusses how this "middle work" is a pivotal t ext for the author. Chapter Six presents an explicator y stud y

PAGE 9

3 of a "late work," The Oak Openings, and e xamin es how Cooper's symbols, including his use of s ymb o lic ac tions, operate within one of his unfortunately misj udg ed narratives. As this dissertation shows, Cooper's literary cap~bilities are habitually undervalued beca us e his focus upon and utilization of action is generally unexamined. Cooper's artistic achievement is better appreciated when the actions animating his texts are understood. Notes 1. From Edgar Allan Poe's review of Wyandotte in Graham's Magazine 23 (1843) as reprinted in American Romanticism:~ Shape for Fiction, ed. Stanley Bank (New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons, 1969) 182. 2. From the February 25, 1852 memorial speech "Discourse on the Life, Genius, and Writings of J. Fenimore Cooper" as reprinted in the Introduction to Precaution (New York: D. Appleton & Co., 1873; rpt., Grosse Pointe, Michigan: Scholarly Press, 1968 34. 3. Francis Parkman, "James Fenimore Cooper," North American Review, 154 (January 1852): 148. 4. Robert E. Spiller, ed., James Fenimore Cooper: Representative Selections, with Introduction, Biography, and Notes (New York: American Books Company, 1936) ix. 5. William Lyon Phelps, Some Makers of American Literature (1922; New York: Norwood, 1977-)-44. 6. R.W.B. Lewis, The American Adam: Innocence, Tragedy, and Tradition in the Nineteenth Century (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1955) 103. 7. Kay Seymour House, Cooper's Americans (Columbus: Ohio State University Press, 1965) 47. She is speaking of the Indian characters.

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4 8. H. Daniel Peck,~ World _ey Itse l f: Th e P as t o ra l Moment in Cooper's Fiction (New Haven: Y a l e U n iv ers ity Press, 1977) 92. He is discussing The L ast o f t h e Mahicans. ----9. Wayne Franklin, The New World of Ja m es Fe nim o r e Cooper (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 19 82 ) 3 10. Unless otherwise identified, the texts use d are James Fenimore Cooper, Works of James Fenimore Cooper, 10 vols. (New York: PeterFenelon Co l lier 1891-1893). Citations to chapter and page number are made within the text.

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1 Journey: CHAPTER TWO JOURNEY, QUEST, AND HUNT Travel or Passage From One Place to Another "He-e-e-re, he-e-ere, pups--away, dogs, away!ye'll be footsore afore ye see the end of the journey." The Pioneers (XLI, 784) Journey narratives, tales which take as an organizational framework the description of travel through space, are among the oldest and comprise some of the most powerful literature in the world. Gilgamesh's journey to the otherworld, Odysseus' journey homeward, the Children of Israel's journey to a homeland, the Wandering Jew's eternal journey, and the earliest writings that can be considered American, Columbus' voyage of exploration and John Smith's chronicle of discovery of the New World--these seminal works are travel tales. "American literary tradition has been characterized to a remarkable and peculiar degree by narratives and 2 images of journeys," notes Janis Stout. The earliest 5

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6 American writings were of journeys to disco v er th e N e w World, journeys to escape the Old World, and j o u r n e y s to settle this "New Eden." The earliest Am er i can "fictions," Joseph Morgan's The History of t h e Kin gdo m of Basaruah (1715) and Benjamin Church's Entertaining Passages on King Philip's War (1716), utilize the journey as an organizational element. Journey is a predominate aspect, too, in Ann Eliza Bleecker's The History of Maria Kettle (1793), in all of Brockden Brown's early works, and in Hugh Henry Brackenrid g e's Modern Chivalry (1792-1815). All these American wor k s preceded Cooper's first narrative. So it was that Cooper inherited and adapted a for m that was well-established in America for his tales whic h treat travel, his journey narratives. It was a form i n which the major patterns were well-developed and particularly relevant to the aspirations and beliefs o f his readers, both in the nineteenth century and now. "The ... distinctive power of American Literature has in large part been a matter of the impact of motion, t h e 3 journey." Cooper's distinctively American fiction uses the motion of the journey to good effect. Indeed as the following list indicates, twenty-five of Cooper's tales include a journey, either thoroughl y or s k etc hily developed, in the first chapter.

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7 The J2y_ A "so li tar y t ra v e l e r rid es t h rough th e ra i n. The Pioneers Elizabeth, "jour n e yi n g h o m e to Templeton, m eets N a tty The Pilot Two ships journey to anchorage. Lionel Lincoln Lionel ends his "tiresome a nd protracted voyage." The Last of the Mahicans The Munro sisters "journe y in the woods." The Red Rover A "traveler" journeys near Newport. The Wept of Wish-ton-Wish Mark Heathcote ta k es a The Prairie The Water-Witch The Bravo The Headsman Homeward Bound Home As Found The Pathfinder Mercedes of Castile The Deerslayer The Wing-And-Wing Wyandotte The Hidenmauer "journey inland." The Bush family "travels" acr o ss the west in a wagon train. Van Beverout takes an "exped i t i on" through town. Monforte enters his gondola for a "passage" across Venice. "Travelers" begin a voyage. Eve is a "traveler" home. Eve continues her journey "home." Four "wayfarers in the wilderness" pause in their "journey." The "departure of an embass y begins. Natty and Harr y "journe y together. A craft arrives in port. Nick goes "on an important movement" to secure a paten t Two men meet on a forest pa th

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8 Miles Wallingford Satanstoe The Redskins The Crater Jack Tier The Oak Openings The charac t e r s voy a g e." The narrator's j o u r n e y beg in s. "My uncle R o a nd my se lf had b ee n traveling . f i v e y ears. Mark's first v o y age i s t o "the capes." A ship departs on t h e ti de. Three travelers meet a f ou rth man in a forest glade. Undeniably, the journey is a vital component at the 4 beginning of Cooper's fictions. Janis Stout's comprehensive study of the journe y in American literature describes six main types of narratives and notes different sub-genres of t h e 5 family. The types are 1) Exploration 2) Escape 3) The Home-Founding Journey 4) The Return to Home 5) The Journey to No End 6) The Quest She notes the first three types are "the three primar y the earliest, patterns of journey narrati v e in American literature," and that the patterns for most of the t y pes 6 are "goa l -directed." Accounts of e x ploration generall y play a minor role in distinctively American literature, although the y are used frequently in non-fiction wor k s wh i c h h a v e 7 "chiefly historical" focus. Any t i me Cooper's

PAGE 15

9 characters stride into virgin forests o r f lo a t on uncharted seas, they explore. It i s i n thi s se ns e of examining the "never before see n th a t S tout classifies exploration. Any time the n arra tiv e t rea t s a character's movement through a space new to that character, exploration is described. The crews in The Sea Lions "steer with an undeviating course into the myster i ous depths of t h e antarctic circle" (XIV, 102) as they approac h "Coo k 's 'Ne plus Ultra"' (104), and the tale carries t h em int o strange regions of frozen wonder where fier y v olcanoes 8 and exotic creatures interrupt the weird ice-scape. Cooper also penned a similar narrative of exploration, treating the seminal American exp l orator y travel, when he created Mercedes of Castile, the tale of Columbus' first voyage to the New World. In this narrative, too, after the crew comes to land much description is given of the scene. The strange, and occasionally lovely, natives and scenes and the curio u s customs of the place are "explored" e x tensi v el y I n Mercedes of Castile Cooper makes use of a character i s ti c narrative technique which often tends to distrac t th e reader's attention from the main action of the ta l e. Cooper gives the focus of his attention to a p red i c t a bl e romantic hero, the twenty-year old Lu i s de Bo b adi ll a. The title of the tale is the name of L u i s sta y -a t home

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10 beloved. While Cooper does chronicle Columbus' voyage with an almost log-like precision, working, as he notes in the Preface, "with the journal of the admiral" ( 3 ) before himself, Cooper downplays the exploratory tale by encapsulating it within the romance of Luis and Mercedes. Despite narrative flaws and although the New World exploration in Mercedes of Castile may be thought of, as may the Antarctic exploration of The Sea Lions, as a species of imaginary voyage for Cooper, who never personally visited the Azores or the Indies, these two tales amply illustrate Cooper's knowledge of the journey of exploration as a form for fiction. The observation must be made here that brief "explorations" occur in nearly all of Cooper's tales. Any time a character first views a space, he experiences a moment of "exploration." When young Natty first glimpses the Glimmerglass, although he is in the company of one who has often traveled the location, he "explores," at least, as far as he is concerned. As the bushes part, "An exclamation of surprise broke from the lips of Deerslayer, an exclamation that was low and guardedly made when he beheld the view that unexpectedly met his gaze. It was, in truth striking" (The Deerslayer, II, 15). Deerslayer says of the place, "This is grand!--'tis solemn!--This is a

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11 sight to warm the heart! (17) . "a glorious spot" (21). Cooper notes that Natty "found a pleasure in studying this large, and to him, unusual opening in the mysteries and forms of the woods" (22). Although H arr y has visited the area numerous times, despite the Hutters' established residency of the spot, and even though Indians have hunted the locale for generations, Natty "explores" the Otsego when first he arrives. Literally scores of such scenes dot Cooper's tales. Although such "explorations" are purely personal and typically fleeting, they convey a small wonder at eac h occurrence. The narrative of escape, unlike that of exploration, continues Stout, is "pervasive and of central concern. It is the most fully characteristic form adopted 9 by the American imagination." Flight narratives, about the Pilgrims and the Puritans, about soldiers in defeat and Indians in retreat, about Natty Bumppo, America's first great fictional hero who finds himself no longer able to abide the transmogrified Templeton of The Pioneers--these narratives are of escape. Fiction of escape offers the "motivational build-up toward the culminating act of breaking out. . The journey t hat 10 fallows . is not typically elaborated. An example of an undeveloped journey of "escape" in Cooper's works appears at the close of The Sea Lion s.

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12 The romantic story line has alread y conc lud e d wit h a marriage between the hero, Roswell, an d h eroi ne, M ar y Then follows this brief passage Roswell ... sold his propert y and migrated to the great West .... Mary had seen certain longings after the ocean, and seals, and whales, in her husband; and did not consider him safe so long as he could scent the odors of a salt marsh (XXX, 231 ) This migration "to the great West" is about as unelaborated an escape as can be imagined; Roswell's "motivational build-up" is similarly absent. No journey action of note is to be found in Natty's narrative of escape either, but his "motivational build up" is the core of The Pioneers. His conflicts with Marmaduke Temple, who represents the force of civilization, and his altercations with the law re v eal his desire to hold on to a philosophy and way of life which is not a viable possibility in the changing pioneer community. Natty, by the close of his first narrative, has seen America's resources so depleted in the Templeton area that his occupation is forever gone. His home has been reduced to rubble. Maj or Effingham and Chingachgook, and even Oliver and Elizabeth, no longer need Natty's aid. As the old hunter loses friends, fireside, and virgin forest, he suffers a superfluity of motivations which build up with in him.

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13 Natty was originally conceived of as a secondary character whose function was in opposition to that served by Marmaduke Temple. Natty was created to lose his struggle. Yet, as Bumppo's character came to life, it grew. Cooper seems to have sensed the vital potential Natty had, for the author changes the thrust of Leatherstocking's actions in the closing few paragraphs of the tale. Natty, as he makes clear, does not leave Templeton on a journey of "escape." While it can be argued that many of Natty's feelings toward the end of The Pioneers may be concerned with getting ready to "break out" of the Templeton area, none of his actions illustrates this motivational build-up. By the time he appears at the gravesites, Natty has already focused upon a movement "to," and not "away from." As Cooper describes the scene, Natty's "decisive appeal" is not his early one, which does point toward a motive of apparent "escape": "These [clearings] be nothing. . I have took but little comfort [in them] sin' your father come on with his settlers" (XLI, 783). No, Natty's "decisive" argument which finally silences Elizabeth indicates his forward-looking orientation: "I'm formed for the wilderness. If ye love me, let me go where my soul craves to be ag'in!" (783). Natty may feel he must "escape," but he acts so as to return to his proper home, the wilderness.

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1 4 When journeys of escape are elaborated Stout maintains, they usually appear as a "series of new compulsions or repeated acts of escape o r as a 11 modulation into another form of journey." Such elaborated journeys of escape often develop as actio n narratives which are best seen as chase narrati v es. Th e escaping prisoner, the settler fleeing Indian hostilities, and the ship's crew flying before the pirate or the enemy craft all act to escape only so lon g as the pursuer remains proximate. While such action ma y be lengthy, especially at sea, it is not so much one unified action, as developed in Cooper's fictions, as it is the sort "series" of repeated acts which stout notes. The acts of the escape, which are responsive acts that the pursued takes only so long as his pursuer is proximate end as soon as the threat is removed. If the escaping character, once distance has been attained, continues to journey, he does so for a new reason; his journey of escape "modulates" into another type of action. He may decide to return home, as does Natty; h e may choose to establish a new home, to e x plore, or simply to keep in motion until some new person, place, or thing attracts his attention and generates ac tiv it y His choice is often influenced by the terminated esca pe action; however, the journey taken, if an y af t er an

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15 escape has a different focus than has the "pursued / purs u e r orientation of escape/chase action. Briefly then, the works of Cooper do utilize action of the type called "journey of escape." During the introductory period of motivational build-up, no action occurs. The action which does finally occur and whic h Stout calls "journey action" is better described as "chase action" and is discussed at length below. Chase action is one of Cooper's most effective forms. No journey in Cooper's fictions is an exemplar of a "journey of escape" similar to Huck Finn's, for Cooper's escaping characters habitually do have a goal toward which they move as soon as they are free to do so. The "escaping" journeyer acts so as to move "away from" the threat. Cooper's characters do not act throughout their narratives so as to disengage; they seem to have a desire to attain, to move "toward" a goal. They act to secure a safe place, not merely to escape a hostile one. Even his characters who do journey throughout their tales, in action here called "quest action," do evince an orientation toward some goal. That the goal remains unattained does not alter their focus on it. Cooper's briefly extended action of the chase does lead the characters "away from" their foe. Cooper's extended journey actions are movements "toward."

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16 The Home Founding Journey, which frequen tly b e gins 12 with escape," is generally hopeful or confident in to n e and focuses on the future, the new home to b e established. This journey is characterized by some, or all, of the following: a pregnancy or successful new birth, a focus on the method of the travel, the development of a social order, and serial overcoming of obstacles, usually presented by the terrain itself. This form is "always to some degree collective, even if 13 only to the degree of being familial." Cooper's first treatment of the Home Founding Journey is in the pages of The Wept of Wish-Ton-Wish. Chapter I opens with the usual introductory exposition but this introduction reveals the modulation of journe y of escape into journey of exploration and into home founding journey. A colony of self-devoted and pious refugees from religious persecution had landed on the rock of Plymouth, less than half a century before .... The labors of the emigrants had been chiefly limited to the country on the coast .... But enterprise, and a desire to search for still more fertile domains, together with the temptation offered by the vast and unknown regions ... had induced many bold adventurers to penetrate more deeply into the forest. The precise spot [of the setting] was one of those establishments of what may ... be called the forlorn hope in the march of civilization through the country. (I, 378) The elder Heathcote had settled this region a generation past, taking a "voluntary exile'' from

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17 England. "The very day he landed in the lo ng-w i s h e d-for asylum, his wife made him the father of a noble boy" (388). Twenty years after this event, the father "announced ... that he intended for a second time to establish his altars in the wilderness" (389). Neither person nor property was transferred from place to place, in this country, at the middle of the seventeenth century, with the dispatch and with the facilities of the present time. The roads were necessarily few and short and communication by water was irregular, tardy, and far from commodious .... Accompanied by a few followers, he proceeded on an e xpl oring expedition, and ... established ... an estate in the colonies. (390) The birth of a son, the difficulty of locomotion alon g the poor roads or via water, the collective nature of the "followers", and their pre-established social or d er point to a typical, albeit underdeveloped and sketchil y presented, home founding journey. Wyandotte also opens with a home founding. Cooper sets the stage for the journey like this Our present tale now leads us to the description of one of those early personal or family settlements ... in ... a very remote part of the territory .... Captain Willoughby had married an American wife, and ... a son and daughter were born .... An adopted child was also added to his cares. Our limits and plans will not permit us to give more than a sketch of the proceedings of the captain in taking possession .... Our adventurers made the most of their journey by water. After finding their way to the head of the Canaideraga, mistaking it for the Otsego, they felled trees, hollowed them into canoes, embarked, and, aided by a yolk of oxen that were driven along the shore, they worme d their way ... descending [a] ri v er until they

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18 reached the Unadilla, which stream until they came to the small river through the captain's new estate. this ascent was exceedingly severe. they ascended ... t h at ra n The labor of ( I, 6, 8-9 ) The remainder of the chapter recounts with fair detail the "hutting," the transportation of goods, the opening of a natural dam, the planting, the construction of a saw-mill, the first harvest, the beginning of construction on a house, and the return of Willoughby to his family, preparatory to their departure to their wilderness home. In both The Wept of Wish-Ton-Wish and Wyandotte, Cooper's home-founding journeys modulate fairly rapidly into other narrative types. However, in two of Cooper's tales home founding is seen to be a more lengthy process. In Satanstoe Corny Littlepage and the Mordaunt entourage journey to found a home. The Mordaunt females travel in "a covered vehicle" that transports "many articles of furniture," and the black servants have another "conveyance, strong, spacious, and covered" (XIX, 321). The party is a large one; a score of settlers moves into the woods. Initially, the passage is fairly good. Of roads, however, we were not long to enjoy the advantages .... Herman Mordaunt was obliged to quit his wagons, and to put all the females on horseback ... (A]fter a delay of half a day, time lost in making these arrangements, we proceeded. The wagons were to follow, but at a slow pace, the ladies being compelled to abandon them on account of the ruggedness of the ways, which would have

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19 rendered their motion not easy to be borne .... [T]he uneven road ... soon became very litt l e more than a line cut through the forest, with an occasional wheel-track, but without the least attempt to level the surface of the ground by a ny artificial means. (XX, 335) As the journeyers approach their destination, Herman Mordaunt tells Corny about the cost and trouble "in getting the ten or fifteen families who were on his property, in the first place, to the spot itself" (340 ) Because these journeyers have an already erected "log building" which Herman Mordaunt's agent has prepared for his family, the only actual beginning of settlement itself occurs at Mooseridge, Corny Littlepage's prospective home. The choosing, felling, cutting, notching, placing, filling of chinks, and roofing over of the trees is described. "We were quite a week in completing our house," Corny states ( XXI, 353). The initial journey is complete by Chapter XXI, but Corny's narrative of home founding does not end until the very last page of the tale. He concludes, "Early in October [Anneke and I] were married, and the remainder of the telling of the tale "may fall to the share of my son Mordaunt, should he ever have the grace to continue this family narrative" (XXX, 511). More than fifty chapters later, Cooper lays the Littlepage family to rest. J

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20 But, at least, Hugh Littlepage, of The Redskins, does finally rest. The Bush family, on the other hand, is last seen in the final chapter of The Prairie "Pursuing their course ... the principals of the family themselves ... never heard of more" (XXXII, 429). This clan departs the tale as they entered, stil l seeking, "Whatever might be the final destination" (I, 216). The Return To Home is not usually "as congenial a form in American literature" because American authors often present such returns through narratives that indicate "defeat, frustration, and the giving up of 14 freedom" to be the result of the return. While many American authors felt a strong need to "define themselves" and their homeland by reference to Europe, their resultant fictions are "freighted with the irony 15 of conflicting motives and ideals." Cooper treats the return to a European home extensively in Notions of the Americans, a nonfiction work, but he does not structure 16 a romance upon such a return. John Paul Jones' "return" to Great Britain in The Pilot does not qualify as a narrative created to illustrate his "self-definition" via a return to European home; it is a tale of adventure which depicts a hero already fully developed. Miles Wallingford does, finally, travel to England, but his "definition of self"

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21 occurs in so many places--in Canton, off Sumatra, near Madagascar, off Guadeloupe, by Virginia, in New York, on a voyage "around the world'' (to Madeira, Rio de Janeiro, British Columbia, Hawaii, Ecuador, Marble Land, and New York), to France, Russia, and Italy--that it would be foolish to label his brief English sojourn as a "return to home." In The Bravo, The Headsman, The Heidenmauer, and The Wing-andWing, Cooper's scenes are European, but so are his characters. Cooper does not offer a full-blown narrative of an American character returning to the European home to "define" himself. It may be that Cooper felt he had offered quite enough "definition" via European return in his non fiction works, or it may be that he had hit on the mode that best suited his own temperament in the first attempt, the "Notions" technique of an American character's return to America as a self-defining return. Whatever the reason, Cooper frequently treats the return to the American home as the journey most rewarding for a structure in his tales. Lionel Lincoln returns to Boston after a seventeen year absence and feels "the place begins to freshen my memory, and I now recall the scenes of my childhood" (Lionel Lincoln, II, 219). The mysterious Ralph, also returning to America after a stay in England, states, "I have noted the increase of the town as a parent notes

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22 the increasing stature of his child; no r i s m y l o v e for 17 it less than parental" (II, 222). Both m e n r e t urn to home and learn who they are in that p l ace. Elizabeth Temple, returning home after fo u r y ears in New York, examines Templeton as it bursts into sight before her. The scene ... was so rapidly alter i ng under the hands of man that it only resembled in its outlines the picture she had so often studied wi th delight in childhood .... [S]o rapid were the changes, and so persevering the labors of those who had cast their fortunes on the success of the enterprise, that it was not difficult for the imagination of Elizabeth to conceive they were enlarging under her eye, while she was gazing i n mute wonder, at the alterations that a few short years had made in the aspect of the country. (The Pioneers; III, 562) Mixed with the self-definition of the experience of the return to home is a type of wonder, similar to the wonder of discovery, if the returning traveler has been absent from home for an appreciable time. The "wonder" of rediscovery of the American home is often not a pleasure-filled one. Perhaps the most painfully "wonderful" return Cooper offers is Hugh Roger Littlepage's journey back to upstate New York in The Redskins. Although Cooper's polemical purposes overshadow his characters and plots severely, the action is "return to home" and Hugh's "self-definition" is as lengthy as it is painful. While the changes in Am erica are profound, the hero changes not at all as h e

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23 rediscovers his home and defines himself in re l at i on t o it. Despite the loss of his pew canopy and a barn, he retains his property in defiance of the anti-renters an d secures his beloved, Mary Warren. He is a "sadder man," but not a "wiser" one in any meaningful sense of the word. This is because he is one of Cooper's perfectly "proper" heroes. Such characters, which function as vehicles for conveying the author's message, need no improvement. They are as good as is humanly possible. All Hugh actually seems to learn is that America does indeed have severe problems which must be borne because they cannot apparently be remedied. With a species of melancholy wonder at the facts of his life, Hugh makes the best of that life, of himself, his extensive property, and his heiress wife. While his journey has altered his location in space and his companions, it has not materially changed the man. Yet, when he is finally properly "home," no more need be said. In Homeward Bound and Home as Found Cooper offers his fullest homeward journey, another return to an American home. The journey itself seems to have taken control of the author. As Cooper writes in the Preface, [Homeward Bound] was commenced with a sole view to exhibit the present state of society in the United States, through the agency, in part, of a set of characters ... who had freshly arrived from Europe, and to whom the distinctive features of the country would be apt to present themselves with greater force .... By the original plan,

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24 the work was to open at the threshold of the country, or with the arrival of the trave l ers [home]. But ... the work (grew until it was found to be] actually closing at, or near, t h e spot where it was originally intended it should commence. (475) This return to America after a twelve years' absence is a journey that takes 52 chapters to effect. After several chases, a gale, a transfer to another ship, an expedition to Africa, an escape, an attack, another escape, a bloody fight, yet another escape, and several score lesser actions, Eve arrives in the New World. But her journey is still far from over, for she must yet travel the Hudson by steamboat and the Mohawk Valley by canal boat and carriage, a further seventeen chapter hegira, before she arrives at home. Needless to say, somewhere along the way Eve manages to "define'' herself in response to her home-seeking journey. The Journey to No End, the futile travel "of uncertain destination or duration" has become the 18 characteristic American vehicle. This journey of lostness is a journey of futility, of "rootlessness and 19 disorder." Many modern American fictions delineate this journey, which has come into full flower in this century. While Cooper did not make full-blown use of this type, the zeitgeist of his era not resembling that of our later times in this respect and the author's own attitudes shaping a fictive world that seems ultimately

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25 to have an orientation on a home place, Cooper do es offer certain examples of this journey type as ear ly as 20 1824 in The Pilot. The Pilot contains Cooper's first reference t o T h e 21 Flying Dutchman. Long Tom Coffin asserts that, wh i le he himself has never seen the ship, he has "seen them that have seen her, and spoken her, too" (XXI, 123). In The Red Rover a ship, strangely out of place on the ocean, calls to mind "the Flying Dutchman (XIV, 323 ) While one character opines that this ship "can ne v er be the Dutchman," a common sailor notes that he "will not swear that a real living ship" follows the Roya l Caroline through the worsening storm. House likens the hero of this narrative to Odysseus, noting the fact tha t 22 he journeys throughout all of the romance However, he is ultimately seen to be a simple human whose journe y does end It is in the reference to the Flying Dutchman that Cooper offers the journey to no end. Folklore has it that the Dutchman is a plague ship, denied entry at every port where she calls. Eventuall y all aboard die. but the ship sails on. Crewed entire ly by corpses, the Dutchman can be seen in storm y weather, often off the Cape of Good Hope, a wandering ghost vessel, doomed to journey without arriva l fore v er tossed on the seas of ill-luck.

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26 On a less legendary note, the closing act i on of Th e water-Witch offers a journey to no end. Tom Ti ll er, t h e Skimmer of the Seas, bids a final adieu to h i s be l o v e d Eudora. "Whither go you?" she asked . "Whither do you sail, and when do you return?" "I follow fortune. My return may be distantnever! Adieu, then, Eudora .... "We will go together! I am thine .. Away, away!" cried the frantic girl ... "Think, for one moment, think!" he said. "Thou wouldst follow an outcast--an outlaw--one hunted and condemned .... With a ship for a dwelling--the tempestuous ocean for a world!" "Thy world is my world!--thy home my home--thy danger, mine!" Eudora was lifted from the ground as if her weight had been that of a feather ... she was borne to the boat. In a moment the bark was afloat .... It lingered for a minute, and was swallowed in the void .... It never returned. (XXXIV, 719-720) On an utterly mundane level, Sancho Mundo of Columbus' crew says that "sailing about the ocean is [his] happiness" (Mercedes of Castile, XVII, 271). He has been a wanderer for so long that "it sickeneth [him] and taketh away the appetite, to walk on solid ground "(XIV, 226). Throughout his life whenever his voyage has ended he "has submitted to fate, and [gone] out again, as soon as possible" (XIV, 227). This character who wanders without end has some ties to shore; Sancho was born on the land.

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2 7 However, like Zephyr on The Water-Witch, L ong T o m Coffin is so much the journeyer to no end that h e "was born on board a chebacco-man, and never could see th e use of more land than now and then a small i s l and to raise a few vegetables" (The Pilot; II, 10). His life begins in a state of journey, and it continues in that same manner until his death, and beyond. The last v iew of Tom shows him being swept rapidly through the brine amidst the wreck of his beloved Ariel (XXIV, 150). His body is never found; the sea, not giving up its "own" dead, rocks him in an eternal, tumultuous embrace. All of the journey types that American authors have ever used are to be found in the works of Fenimore Cooper. Not only does he utilize all the identifiable types, but also he uses journey for both prosaic and imaginative ends. At their most literal, journey narratives are travelogues. The travelogue may consist of a basic guide describing accommodations, meals, means of locomotion, and worthwhile sights along a route. Stripped of all fictive and imaginative devices, this form, found even today in tourist guides, has no pretenses at "literature." Portions of Cooper's non fiction approach this level of journey narrative. At other times, Cooper takes pains to use his basic journe y framework as a soapbox for declamation of socia l commentary, criticism, and panacea.

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28 At the far end of the spectrum, Cooper writes journeys of the sort which Philip Babcock Gove names 23 "Imaginary Voyages." Gove differentiates "grands voyages" from little voyages, which he names "journeys" or "trips," but he then specifically notes that length in days or miles does not offer a method of determination and that it does not matter if the account fails to sustain the entire text. Types of "Imaginary voyages" include utopias, Robinsonades, sea novels, picaresques, chroniques scandaleuse, and framework conte 24 de fee tales. Gove concludes by calling a ll such works "geographical fiction, comparable in scope to 25 historical fiction." Cooper utilized the imaginary journey comfortably. The Crater offers a polemical utopian tale. Mark Woolston endures numerous mishaps before he arrives at the Edenic island in the Pacific which he names Vulcan's Peak, colonizes, and eventually abandons when its other settlers, wresting control from the founding father and discoverer, "spoil" the purity of his simple social order. When the tale closes, the entire island has sunk back beneath the surface of the ocean which originally covered it. The Monikins recounts two voyages, one to Leaplow, a land remarkably like the United States, and the other to Leaphigh, a country marvelously similar to England. In one respect, however, the two lands are not

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29 like any place in the world: denizens of both are monkeys. Both these tales are social commentaries; both make use of completely imaginary voyages as a wa y to arrive at locations which are developed po l emically. Cooper's narratives cover the full spectrum, from the unremittingly mimetic to the thoroughly imaginative. He moves at will between the two worlds, sometimes within the same tale. In Lionel Lincoln Boston is a "nightmare world," and the tale is the most Gothic 26 Cooper ever wrote. Yet the location is the one Cooper researched the most carefully and that he described wi th the greatest fidelity to actual, physical location. In The Water-Witch, "the real and unreal are brilliantly 27 interwoven." The Leatherstocking Tales, too, exhibit Cooper's easy movement between the two extremes of journey presentation. The Deerslayer nicely illustrates the polar opposites. In Chapter XXVII, Natty takes to a canoe in an ultimately vain attempt to escape his captivity in the Indian camp on the banks of the Otsego. Approaching the bark, he finds "that the paddles had been removed! [G]iving a right direction to its bow, he ran off into the water, bearing the canoe before him, and threw all his strength and skill into a last effort, and cast himself forward so as to fall into the bottom of the light craft." Natty's actions for the next half hour

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30 are most realistically described: taking out h is kni fe "to cut a hole through the bark in order to get a view of shore," being shot at, hitching his body a l ong with the utmost caution" to get "his eye at the bullet-hole," moving a "large, round, smooth stone to keep the trim of the light boat while he worked his own body as far aft as possible," having his skin "actually grazed" by another bullet, "rowing without the necessity of rising" by use of a stick, and feeling "his face fanned by the air" as his exertions yield the desired result. This finely textured and minutely rendered description continues into Chapter XXVIII without ever once moving away from unremitting realism. At the other extreme, Cooper gives his reader an earlier picture of Natty, with "a window in his breast through which the light of his honesty was ever shining" (IX, 83), afloat in the ark at night upon the Glimmerglass. In this manner half an hour passed, during which time the ark had been slowly stealing over the water, with the darkness thickening around it ... while the mountains that lined the sides of the beautiful basin were over-shadowing it, nearly from side to side. There was, indeed, a narrow strip of water in the center of the lake, where the dim light that was still shed from the heavens fell upon its surface, in a line extending

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31 north and south; and along this faint tract--a sort o f inverted milky-way ... the scow held her co u rse (84 ) Out of this reflected dreamscape, Hetty padd l es a canoe. Her body is "dimly visible, resembling a spectral outline of a human form standing on the water, and it is illuminated faintly by "that species of mi lky way" which Deerslayer calls "Natur's dim road" (8 4) Only in an imaginary voyage can a person float atop the Milky Way and encounter spectral forms standing on the stars. Both mimetically and imaginatively, Cooper utilizes his American journeys. He also evinces a conscious use of the journey "out and back." Cooper's habitual utilization of this journey pattern seems to indicate his understanding of the symbolic dimensions of the movement. As the journey away from home and back to it was to be raised into unmistakable symbolic dimensions by Hawthorne, and a host of following American authors, it is noteworthy that Cooper was apparently so fond of the pattern. In The Sea Lions the romantic hero, Roswell Gardiner, departs from his home a callow youth. During the almost unimaginably harsh winter in the Antarctic, he finds a proper faith in God. Cooper says: "Roswell Gardiner has never wavered in his faith, from the time when his feelings were awakened by the just view of his own insignificance, as compared to the power

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32 of God" (XXX, 232). As a fact, Cooper's journeys "out and back" include the actions of major or minor characters in every single narrative he wrote. All his tales contain movements away from and back to homes or safe places. This characteristic journey action is discussed extensively below. Sometimes the return to area of origin is treated briefly, sometimes the place of debarkation is slighted, sometimes the journey itself is of small magnitude or brief duration, and sometimes the response of the returned journeyer is not given at all; however, the characteristic "out and back" movement is ubiquitous. The journey need not function as a symbol for man's own process of maturity. Sometimes, in those narratives by Cooper that take the characters to the famous "neutral ground" between combatants or between civilization and nature, the journey is a representation of human conflict. As Stout notes, the journey in American literature functions both as "a real event in 28 time and a timeless symbolic action." Cooper was certainly aware of at least some of the import which journey can be seen to have in his narratives. The fact that he did not make conscious use of the form at all times and in all places does not subtract from the fa ct that he did make use of the form in all narratives in multiple places.

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33 Somewhere within Cooper the idea that journey was somehow the "proper" movement for Americans had a tenuous hold. In the same place within the minds of the citizens, and in the fictive creations that speak and act for the real people, was and is the same conviction. Americans move as much as they do because they must; their heroes do too. An examination of how Cooper utilizes his various journeys, as well as his other action types, both illuminates any particular text and helps to explain his artistic talent. Quest: A Seeking; Adventure; Usually Involving a Journey "Life is a pilgrimage, and a penance; though few of us think so while journeying on its way; but so it is to all. . The Heidenmauer --( XXIV, 751) Because the quest usually involves a journey, stout discusses this action as a sub-genre of the family. However, as Peter Revell has discussed, real differences exist between simple journey and action of quest or of search or hunt. In Quest in American Poetry he discusses the differences among journey, quest, and search or hunt. He notes that a journey is merely a series of adventures. He states that quest and search both have an underlying basis in pursuit of goal "but

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-------------~ 3 4 that 'quest' seems to ... imply ( thou gh th e s tandard dictionaries do not support this view ) some thi ng different from a search--the searcher knows w h at h e i s looking for ... while the quester seeks to find 29 something not completely known." The quest differs from simple journey because th e ultimate goal of the quester is both "radically uncertain" and "radically significant .... Equall y 3 0 uncertain is the route that the quester must follow." Further, when journey action ends, the journeyer si m p ly stops acting; when quest action closes, the quester is typically emotionally affected and often either radically transmogrified by the experience or destroyed by the act. As the questing hero moves toward his goal, his interchanges with his fellows in society make clear his basic loneliness. This loneliness is, as Blackburn has noted, "the outgrowth of the sense of failed identity, of the instability of an inferior social standing, and 31 of the failure to find human solidarity." Richard Bjornson, speaking of the European novel, notes t h at the questing hero exhibits ambiguous links with his own past, that he always leaves home, that he undergoes some sort of initiation, and that his contacts with his world reveal its dehumanization and its pressures to 32 conform.

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35 Cooper's questing characters are usually odd specimens of humanity, as they would almost have to be. After all, the quester is both isolated from humanity emotionally and disjuncted from people spatially, seeking through his world for a goal that his fellows do not value with his intensity of emotion. The titular character in Jack Tier is a short, waddling little figure with a cracked voice, and Jack seems particularly representative because he is notably peculiar in word and deed. Boarding the Molly Swash from a skiff at sea, Jack spins a yarn that he wqs accidentally left on an island twenty years past and that he has been shipping on other vessels ever since, trying to rejoin Captain Spike and the Molly's crew. Spike cannot remember Jack, but hires him on anyhow. The captain is a drinking privateer, coarse and violent. When Spike attempts to abduct the heroine, Jack rescues her and they escape; however, at the first opportunity, Jack rejoins the "willian" Spike. When the Molly Swash sinks, Spike flings Jack out of the yawl, but the game little character swims to safety and is next seen wearing female attire, assiduously mending clothing beside the hospital bed where Spike, mortally wounded, is soon to die. This female, then, is "Jack Tier--for it was he, appearing in the garb of his proper sex, after a disguise that had now lasted full

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36 twenty years" (XVI, 395). And for twenty years Jack h as quested across the oceans of the world seeking Stephen Spike because, as she reveals to him, "I am your wife!" (XVI, 405). Abandoned by her husband, Jack (Mrs. Spike ) has spent two decades seeking him out, forced to live as a man so the quest could continue. "It is hard for a woman to unsex herself ... to throw off her very natur' ... and to turn man" (XVII, 411), but it is far from impossible if the woman has reason enough for her actions. Jack Tier's motivations are sufficient, and "his" peculiarities are explained when "her" true sex is revealed. Her questing ends when Spike dies. She remains in skirts, remembers how to cry, and comes to forgiveness. Subsequently, she grows out her hair, leaves off chewing tobacco, and becomes a sort of old maid aunt to the child born to the hero and heroine. Once her quest action concludes, she becomes a "normal" female person again. With quest, as with journey, the character moves in response to an internal motivation. Yet, the character who journeys moves from one place to another place; a character who quests moves from one place to some thing. The quest object may well be another place, as is evident. Religious pilgrimages are quests to attain place.

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37 Cooper's only full blown religious pilgrimage occurs in Chapters XXIV-XXIX of The Heidenmauer. In this text, the pilgrims journey afoot to expiate the s in of their community, the burning of a local Bavarian abbey. Of their number, only three seem to display the properly reverent attitude of religious pilgrim; the remaining dozen characters seem simply to be journeying because they are forced to do so. The three true pilgrims, Father Arnolph, a deeply devout Catholic, Lottchen Hintermayer, who believes her only child to have died, and Meta Frey, who loves the assumedly deceased Hintermayer son, display the requisite emotions for people on pilgrimage. They pray often and fervently. They weep, faint, or stand transfixed by awe. They are the least interesting members of the group as they follow along after the leaders to the shrine in Switzerland. None of the proper pilgrims displays the sort of sublimely transcendent union of quester with quest object which proper quest narratives offer. Cooper could understand, intellectually, the concept of Catholic religious pilgrimage; however, he was not able to comprehend the emotional verity of the act. This single pilgrimage he offers, his sole religious quest, is a failure. As a journey, the action is successful enough. The dozen members of the group who are just

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3 8 going along according to instructions are int eres ting characters and they offer comic relief. But as a qu es t the action is unfortunately flawed. The t h ree d e v ou t pilgrims fail to come to life as they act. Howe v er, even though the pilgrimage in The Heidenmauer is not a good example of a religious quest to a sacred shrine, it does reveal Cooper's knowledge of this particular for m of quest action. Other quests found in Cooper's works are not movements to special place; questers may move toward an object, a person, or some ideal state of consciousness. For example, the term "quest" is often given to narratives involving no spatial journeys at all. While stout maintains that "the designation quest for a purely mental yearning and effort" is a misnomer, she notes that it is with this externally inactive form of the quest that American journeys "have their strongest 33 affinities." While the concept of quest without "movement" is possible, the idea of "journey" without "movement" is absurd. Some quests involve no journe y ; quests are different from journeys. One way to see the difference between the two actions is to examine the emotional intensity of the quester's evaluation of the quest object. Another way is to examine the emotion in the rhetoric surrounding the moment of attainment of quest object. The quest

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39 object, unlike the object of attainment for the journeyer (i.e.: "journey's end"), may be either materially real, physically obtainable or abstract, ultimate, and intangible. Journey's end is the place where action stops; quest's end may be anyplace--or no place at all, in the sense that the quester may have to die and depart all earthly places to attain his object. When the journeyer finishes his action, he turns to some other relatively average activity. When the quester achieves his goal, he experiences an apotheotic moment of emotional release, a transcendent instant. The quest object itself, its intrinsic value, is immaterial. Ahab pursues a whale; Gatsby a light. It is the quester's personal evaluation of his quest object, the "radically significant, beyond definition or 34 rational assessment" value he gives the item which invests the object with its import. With a monomaniacal orientation on the object, the quester gives pursuit. He follows after his goal with such intensity that he comes to view the real world around himself as somehow not real any longer. Often the quester is frightened b y the world, or mystified by it, or horrified. Only when he attains his desire, his quest object, is he content with a contentment which appears apotheotic to non questers.

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40 Cooper wrote no quest narratives of the ca lib er of Moby Dick; he was not the artist Melville was. But he did attempt quest narratives. Jack Tier's quest for reunion with Captain Spike and the several characters' pilgrimage to Switzerland in The Heidenmauer are two examples. Three other quests that Cooper penned are effective and merit lengthy examination. In the hopes of beginning an extensive chronicle of American history, Cooper wrote Lionel Lincoln. Readers of his era and of subsequent ones agree that the tale is a failure. Cooper mishandles his plot, stifles his characters, and makes the wrong choice with his tone. The only truly interesting character in the narrative is Ralph, and he is not the hero. Because Ralph is not the focus, his actions are not followed. Because of his under-development, his quest is not immediately apparent. Ralph, unbeknownst to all, is actually Sir Lionel Lincoln, a baronet; he is also a lunatic, escaped from an English madhouse. Not surprisingly, given his peculiar manner of speaking and his even more unusual appearance, the other characters view Ralph with scorn, confusion, and fear. To one woman, he "is some madman" (XII, 283). To another, he is not human at all; "he can even read our secret thoughts, as I had supposed man could never read them" (XIV, 291). To Meriton, Ralph is

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41 a "disagreeable old stranger . with his mean, f ilthy bundle of rags" (I, 214); to Lionel, Ralph is "remarkable ... [hallowed] by the air of great age an d attendant care" (VIII, 255). The idiot savant, Job, "worships [Ralph] as a God" (VIII, 258); the heroine, Cecil, hears his voice and "instantly recall[s] the tones of the aged messenger of Death" (XXX, 388). Ralph has left behind his home, distancing himself so far from his past that even his name is lost. "I am returned from a sad, sad pilgrimage" (I, 215), Ralph intones, and he says, "I am alone ... without love" (VI, 244). Ralph is so alienated from humanity that he says he finds all the people in all the world evil, and all their acts vile. "All is treachery and sin" (IV, 231), he raves at one point. Ralph is so far severed from his proper past that he seems to have actually forgotten how old he is; chronologically no more than fifty years old, Ralph moans of his great age and of the "generations" of sinful men which he has seen pass away. He states that he has borne "the burden of life till Death has forgotten him" (XXXIII, 403), and in the saying he reveals his quest. I, who have seen ages pass since the blood of youth has been chilled, and generation after generation swept away, must still linger in the haunts of men! (XXXI, 396) .... 'tis the old that cannot die .... I [grew] to manhood, and learn[ed] how hard it is to live, but ... I cannot die! (XXXIII, 402-403).

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42 Ralph is on quest throughout his narrative, peripherall y and dementedly, it is true, but he quests after h is own death. When he is finally granted his desire and death comes to him, "a ray of passing reason lighted his pallid and ghastly features, ... his look gradually softening. A calm and decent expression possessed those lineaments ... and, stretching forth his arms in the attitude of benediction he fell ... perfectly dead" (XXXIII, 405). Ralph's "interests," as he states early in the narrative, are all "already in the grave" (IV, 231). When he attains union with his goal, his Gothic quest ends. Various actions by Natty Bumppo, the most extensively studied character in Cooper's canon, have 35 been seen as quest actions. Walker labels the action in The Deerslayer "quest" action, arguing that the narrative of Natty's first kill can be seen as action with "religious overtones suggestive of the quest for 36 the pure in heart for the Holy Grail." Peck believes The Last of the Mahicans to be a narrative of "mythic 37 quest," with Uncas as the questing hero. In The Prairie a third example of Natty's questing action is evident. In this text, the same quest after death which animates Ralph occupies the aged Natty Bumppo, albeit not presented in as gristly a guise as is Ralph's. In Lionel Lincoln the quest for death is not

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43 the primary focus; in The Prairie, at l east in refere n ce to Leatherstocking, it is. Cooper had set the stage perfectly for Natty's quest for death at t h e close of the narrative which first presented the hero. The fina l chapter of The Pioneers depicts Natty "stretched on the earth before a head-stone of white marble" and musing t o himself, "Who will be there to put me in the 'arth when my time comes?" (XXXXI, 781). His concern is justified, for he has "none of his name and family" in "all the world." Also, he intends to depart the Templeton area and leave behind all the lovely scene he holds so dear. Natty states: "I m weary of living in clearings I crave to go into the woods ag'in--I do .... If ye love me, let me go where my soul craves to be" (X XX XI, 783) The Prairie presents Natty first as a "colossal" (I, 218) figure, and then as a being emaciated, "suffering, withered," "of more than eighty" years of "decay" (I, 219), moving through a "bleak and solitary'' (I, 216) land which is also "aged" (II, 221). Natty is no longer a hunter, his occupation gone as completely as is his home, the wilderness woods. "I have no regular abode, and seldom pass more than a month at a time on the same range" (II, 222), he states; "Seventy-and-five years have I been upon the road" (II, 223). His travels have brought him to such a desolate spot, according to h i m, that "You may travel ... weeks, if not months ... i n

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44 these open fields" and find "neither dwe ll in g nor habitation for man or beast" (II, 223 ) When Na t t y speaks these words, he is surrounded by the B u s h c l a n, who are soon to be attacked, besieged, and beleaguere d by enough Indians to keep them busy for weeks. Indeed, Natty himself does allow that "hundreds, nay, t h ousands of the rightful owners of the country [are] ro v ing about the plains" (II, 225). Natty is suffering from the myopic vision of the quester, unable to see, here at the opening of the narrative, the reality of the Indian ca mp where he will, later, find the acceptable place to die. Although when Natty speaks of "the inner country" (XXXIII, 434) he literally means the "inhabited lands," his words conjure the image of that very subjective world which the quester inhabits. When Natty can see the Pawnee village for what it "really'' is, he finds it to be good and he waits out the remainder of his life in the midst of the respectful savages. Cooper skillfully describes the close of Natty's quest for death. Seated in a thronelike seat, illuminated by the setting sun, accoutered with his rifle and the preserved skin of his dog, attended by a crowd of onlookers, Natty prepares to die. After he leaves the "Here!" an Indian honors his passing with t he eulogy: "A valiant, a just and a w i se warrior, has gone

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45 on the path which will lead him to the bl esse d g r ound s of his people" (XXXIII, 442). Yet not all Cooper's quests end ( or is it begin? ) with death. In Mercedes of Castile, the questing hero is Christopher Columbus and his quest is to find the New World. As Cooper makes clear, Columbus is obsessed with his inner vision, "filled with the vastness of his purposes" (IIII, 53), "awakened ... to mightier things'' (IIII, 59), set apart as "the chosen vessel" (V, 98), seeing a "truth that was concealed from most eyes" (XIII, 198 ) Many of the people around Columbus believe him to be no more than a "mendicant adventurer" (V, 106); he is often an "object of scorn" (VIII, 112), this "madman" (V, 109), this "visionary" (VIII, 117). utterly solitary, he has no family and no friends as he tra v els Europe urging his suit for funding. Columbus, even before he finally sets sail, has spent a generation "on his weary pilgrimage" (IIII, 57 ) As he tells the tale, This matter hath now occupied my mind quite eighteen years. During the whole of this long period I have thought seriously of little else, and it may be said to have engaged my mind sleeping and waking. I saw the truth early and intensely .... I feel a reliance on success, that cometh from dependence on God. I think myself an agent, chosen for the accompl i shment of great ends. (V, 103)

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46 His "great ends" are, first, "to see the wealth of the Indies pouring into the coffers of Castile" in consequence of this voyage and, second, to effect "the recovery of the Holy Sepulchre" (XII, 183) through use of this wealth. When Columbus finally prepares to leave Europe in pursuit of his great ends, his face exhibits "the chastened rapture of a Christian who was about to quit a world of woe, to enter on the untasted, but certain, fruition of blessed immortality" (XIII, 194). Perhaps because Cooper himself was aware that his book was failing somehow to vivify the rapturous quest, he wrote in a character to accompany Columbus. And, in order to make the point of the quixotic exercise unmistakable, Cooper names the character Sancho--Sancho Mundo. The voyage to the New World is chronicled with a documentary precision. It is, according to Columbus, a voyage which "never had a precedent on this earth, for its length or for the loveliness of its way" (XIV, 220). Columbus believes his voyage will carry them to Cathay or to Cipango (Japan), and he produces a map "from Paul Toscanelli, a learned Tuscan" (XIX, 317), which shows the city of "Quisay." This city's name means "The city of Heaven" (XIX, 318). The quester does not know where he is going in his quest. The pole star seems to "jump" in the sky as the voyage continues, and the compasses

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47 fail to point properly north. So uncertain i s the location of the quest object--or even its verity--that Columbus himself is tricked by a low-lying bank of clouds into believing that land has been sighted. His face "became radiant with delight and pious exultation. uncovering himself, he cast a look upward in unbounded gratitude, and then fell on his knees, to return open thanks to God" (XX, 323). Although this sighting is a false alarm, when the New World is actually seen, Columbus and all the crew exhibit "exultation" (XXI, 346). His face revealing "the glow of inward rapture" (XXI, 356), Columbus says, "Laud be to God!" (XXI, 38 35 3) Cooper is obliged to remove Columbus from the central position in the narrative after he has attained his quest object. This shift of focus back to the typically lifeless young and noble hero, Luis de Bobadilla, does not help the tale; in fact, focus upon the languishing romantic lead puts the kiss of death on the quest narrative. However, just at the end of the tale a breath of life wafts back into the pages when Columbus has a final moment of attention. The old man is aship again and he says, I now go forth from Spain, on a far more perilous adventure than [the first] .... Then, I sailed concealed in contempt, and veiled from human eyes by ignorance and pity; now, I have left the Old World followed by malignancy and envy. ( XXXI, ~ C8 )

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48 In Mercedes of Castile Cooper consciousl y u ses t he quest to discover the New World as his ordering mechanism. Once the quest object is attained and the tensions which the quest action generated is lost, the focus of the narrative disappears, illustrating just how integral the ordering mechanism of quest action reall y is. Possibly Cooper feared to offer the public y et another work "which could scarcely be a favorite with 39 the females," and it might be for this reason that his love story stretches all around the quest tale, li k e a great anaconda, to choke the life out of the stor y However, the truth remains that Cooper was unable to write a really effective quest narrative. He may have known it himself, for he shies away from focus on the quest hero, habitually presenting the quest moment through the eyes of another character or with recourse to his calm, authorial persona. Even when the focus is directly on the quester, his tongue seems somehow tied: "His lips moved in a vain effort to speak Ralph, in Lionel Lincoln "Here!" Natty, in The Prairie "Laud to be God!" Columbus, in Mercedes of Castile The problem with Cooper seems often to be that his turgid prose destroys the surest method to precisel y identify quest: the revelatory moment when quest i s II

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49 culminated. Cooper's words do not produce the emotiona l effect necessary to the task. It may be fairly noted that Cooper was not habitually concerned with writing "The Great American Quest." Yet it can also be as fairly noted that Cooper's fundamental purpose, his sub textual foundation, was to recreate the great American quest itself, the quest of attaining a national identity. Cooper, the man, knew American reporters to be slanderous rumor-mongers, American lawyers to be opportunistic bombasts, American voters to be uneducated vacillators, and American citizens to be greedy and selfish opportunists. But Cooper, the writer, knew the artistic truth behind the unremarkable reality of his New World home. And this artist could not help but reach toward, yearn after, that myth. Part of that American myth was, for Cooper, marriage. All of his formulaic romantic story lines, then, can be said somehow to spring from the world of myth. The wedding ceremony, is thus that fusion of quester with quest object. Frequently, the tale closes just after the wedding itself because the end of the 40 quest brings an end to the action of the quester. Such scenes, of course, offer a conclusion "favorable with the females." The formula ends with "And they lived happily ever after." But there seems to be another dimension to the closure of tale with marriage, a

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50 feeling of static "rightness" akin to the emotiona l quiescence which the quester feels when his quest is finally realized. Cooper's "proper" romantic leads, however, are often so refined that they fail to vivify the emotional intensity which is the surest indicator of quest attainment. Further, Cooper's convoluted syntax and painfully turgid prose usually interfere with the realization of any emotional plateaus which the characters purport to feel. Finally, it may not be that Cooper is simply unable to write the words that would vivify a quest; perhaps he is also unwilling. It is certain that any man married for 41 years to the same woman, as Cooper was, surely knows that marriage is not an extended union of quester with quest object that either destroys him or else transmogrifies him radically. Yet, the idea that a proper marriage was somehow a perfect marriage seems to remain with the man. Lawrence has discussed the yawning gulf between Cooper's "Wish-Fulfillment" and his "Actuality" in reference to the Leatherstocking myth. The "vision" which is Cooper's wish fulfilling fictive reality in Natty's world is the author's "presentation of a deep subjective desire" that is somehow "real" and 41 "almost prophetic." It is another species of this "real" vision which animates Cooper's equally fictive,

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51 but equally powerful, concept of the "e v er af t er" w hi c h he assigns to his lovers. In 1820, Cooper wrote: If there be bliss in this life, approaching in any degree to the happiness of the blessed, it is the fruition of long and ardent love, where youth, innocence, piety, and family concord, s m i l e upon the union. (Precaution; XLVII, 715) As late as 1850, in Cooper's last published narrati v e, he still believes: Perhaps there is nothing on earth that so nearly resembles the pure happiness of the blessed, as the felicity that succeeds the ent i re union of two hearts that are wrapped up in each other .... The affinity of feelings, the community of thought, the steadily increasing confidence which, in the end, almost incorporates the moral existence of two into one, are so many new and precious ties, that it is not wonderful the novices believe they are transplanted to a new and ethereal state of being. ( The Ways of the Hour; XXX, 190) Cooper's terms describing marriage as "approaching the happiness of the blessed" which "transports" the couple to "a new and ethereal state of being" embody quest-object attainment. If he fails to recreate the apotheotic moment, it is not because he lacks knowledge of it, but because he is burdened with refined characters who speak too "properly" to be properly human, hampered by his own emotional reserve and ambivalence and constrained by the dictates of his century and the conventions of his art.

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52 Hunt: To Search Diligently; To Seek "We looked carefully, in all direct i ons in th e hope of discovering something that might g i v e u s an insight." Afloat and Ashore (XII, 334) Journey narratives and quest narratives are two self-motivated types of action that Cooper uses with differing degrees of success in his var i ous fict i ons. A third type of self motivated action, a type not proper ly termed either journey, or quest, is the hunt or search. A hungry or thirsty character, a character who is impecunious, a marriageable youth with no potential mate, a vaguely dissatisfied man or woman may se t out to hunt. The character may have no certain or definab l e goal, seeking neither journey's end nor quest object. He simply begins to move about in search of surcease from his personal dissatisfaction. The searching character casts about in the environment, vaguely attempting to somehow rectify the "wrong" aspect of his life. Hunt or search action differs from journey of exploration action, for the explorer acts to learn something new about his world while the hunting or searching character, as here defined acts so as to remedy an existing lack within himself. While both

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53 actors may feel a similar internal motivat i on th e "discontent" of wanting to move toward "someth in g th e explorer wants his vague need filled with sig h ts o r knowledge never before seen or conceptualized; th e hunter has a specific lack of some sort which he wants remedied. Both explorer and searcher are dissatisfied and both move through space because of their emotional feelings. And, it is true, the explorer who has no fir m idea of where to find a "new" place m ay cast about in hunting action. Similarly, the hunt i ng or search i ng character may be "hunting" for previously unknown or unseen places if he suffers from a "lack" of scenic novelty. Yet, brief consideration of the difference between action of the sort generated by a narrative about Lewis and Clark and action described by a narrative about thirsting people seeking a source of water in any wilderness illustrates the real difference between the two motivations. Proper explorers act to attain "new" locations; proper hunters and searchers act to resecure that which they have somehow "lost." The hunt or search is typically an action of relatively short duration. While characters may quest or journey throughout an entire narrative, or e v en two, Cooper's characters rarely search for very long. Cooper's hunts are used either as brief, acti v e

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54 interludes or as a means of entry into one of the ot h er, more sustainable actions. In The Last of the Mohicans Cooper presents a typical and brief hunt. The Fort Henry massacre has begun. The Munro sisters are surrounded by maddened Indians. In the midst of the slaughter Magua has been "raging from group to group, like one who, scorning to touch the vulgar herd, hunted for some victim" (XVII, 107). When he finds Cora, he takes her captive. His peculiar "raging from group to group" keeps him from slaughtering, which is the proper act for an enraged savage on the field. Magua has been "hunting" for Lieutenant Colonel Munro, but he has not been finding. When he locates Cora, a suitable substitute to assuage his need, he begins a journey. As is evident, a searching character on hunt may find some item not even sought. This phenomenon illustrates the basic self-orientation of hunting action. When the personal lack is rectified, no matter whatever item satisfies the searcher, his hunt is complete. As The Pioneers opens, Natty is in need of food. The buck he has shot is loaded onto Judge Temple's sleigh. Although the wounded Oliver Edwards (Effingham) says he will bring "a quarter of the buck" (I, 556) back for dinner, Natty does not need the food; no hunter of

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55 Bumppo's skill needs help to find game for his rifle. Natty shoots a nearby pheasant and calls to Edwards, "never mind the venison, boy." Here the Leatherstocking's hunt for dinner yields not only fresh game, but also serendipitous meeting with travelers in the woods. In The Wept of Wish-Ton-Wish only "six-and-thirty" sheep, rather than the requisite "seven-and-thirty," arrive back at home. The sheepboy adds that he has been "an hour among the briars and bushes of the hill, looking for the lost wether" (II, 395). "Hast thou ridden carefully through the clearing?" asks the owner of the animals. The boy replies he has. The owner then rides away from his home, loitering "along the path and at times bending his gaze around the whole of his limited horizon ... (II, 395). What the wether's owner finds is a stranger, arriving at the secluded settlement. Here again a man on hunt discovers an unsought find. Many hunters find what they seek, however. Harry March and Natty hunt together for a canoe which Harry had earlier hidden in a hollow tree. Harry knew the direction .. and he now led on with the confident step of a man assured of his object .... After proceeding near a mile, March stopped and began to cast about him with an inquiring look, examining the different objects with care. (The Deerslayer, II, 14)

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56 But poor Harry is unable to find the ho l low t ree until Natty indicates, "See; this is the spot y ou came t o find ( 15 ) Natty hunts often. At the climactic moment when Deerslayer has just slain his first human being, the Mingo who will shortly bestow a new name on the hero, Natty goes hunting for a rifle. "The piece was found where its owner [the Mingo] had dropped it" (VII, 62), and only after securing the weapon does Natty approach his fallen foe. Soon again there is a hunt. Natty, Judith, and Chingachgook hunt for the key to the chest on the ark. Natty cannot find it, so he asks the Indian to join in the search. Chingachgook immediately begins to cast about for the hiding place, and all three are "soon engaged in an anxious and spirited search," turning their "inquiries to those places that struck them as ingenious hiding-places" (XII, 108). They "examine" and "rummage" until Chingachgook suggests that they look in the "coarse pocket" belonging to Hetty. There the key is secreted. One type of activity which is a type of search or hunt is the well-established scouting action found in all Indian tales. By whatever name it may be called to scout out or reconnoiter, investigate, get the la y of the land, or to take a "look-see," th i s type of casting about is a hunting act. Indians "sent out to

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57 reconnoiter ... soon return to report th e i r wa nt of success in making any discovery" ( X V III, 16 2) i n T he Deerslayer. Others of their number check in an oppos i te direction; "others had examined in different directions." At the same time, Hetty hunts for an Indian friend, but does not "find" her (163 ) Some of the savages keep watch against their foes, two of them constantly passing back and forth in "vigilance" against a surprise attack. In three paragraphs in Chapter XVIII, Cooper presents six different hunt or search actions. None of these yields the desired end. People ashore, hunting afoot or in conjunction w i th a beast of burden, are subject to the sorts of physical constraints that limit all land-bound peoples: they get tired fairly soon. They must rest. Mimetic characterization requires that fairly brief segments only can be devoted to land searches or to land actions such as chase, discussed below. After a relatively brief time, all characters relying upon their bodies or any corporeal body must either find what they seek, find an acceptable substitute, or turn to other actions, such as eating or sleeping. After these sorts of resting activities, the hunting action may recommence or i t ma y not. Either way, in Cooper's tales land hunts are actions of short duration.

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58 Sea hunts, however, are another m a t ter. P eop l e who are aship have the physical capabi l ity to h unt fo r f ar longer than those ashore. Searches of severa l hours length are lengthy shore hunts, but ships' searches ma y last for unremitting days, weeks, or even months. In Afloat and Ashore, Miles Wall i ngford ships aboard the Crisis under Captain Williams. This i s the sort of man who "is never so happy as when he is running round the ocean in places where it is full of unknown islands, looking for sandal wood and beche-la-mar!" (XI, 320). On this particular occasion, the captain wishes to "double the Horn'', which place is subjected to s u ch conflicting descriptions that no two mariners "seem to have found it exactly alike." Also on this passage a "tempest" commences. The mariners lose their reckoning and the captain attempts to get a sight of some sort of land "as it would enable [them] to get some tolerable accurate notions of ... position." None of the men retains any hope of finding the passage they "aimed at." For three full days, all hands search through the thick weather, trying to locate some route to safety. "It is not easy to make a landsman understand t he embarassments of" (323) such a situation, when the captain of a ship does not know in which direction to sail in order to find home. On the fourth day, they are blown i nto some sort of passage through some islands which mi gh t b e p ar t

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59 of Tierra del Fuego. The storm continues. On the morning of the sixth day, the Crisis' crew realizes it has "found a passage westward that actually led into the ocean!" (327). Unfortunately, it is the Pacific; they have passed "the Straits of Magellan without knowing it!" (327). For nearly a week, Captain Williams and his crew hunt for the passage through which Williams, at least, has already passed four times. Although the tempest contributes to their inability to find the route, the seekers continue to strain their eyes for the passage whenever the weather allows them sufficient time to hunt. Cooper wisely interspaces this extended hunting action with fight action (man against his environment); a minute recitation of six days' fruitless searching would yield a poor narrative at best. People who hunt or search when on a ship are not interesting to read about when they are actively hunting: they look, but do not see, as their ship moves through the water. A more lengthy sea hunt is the one acted by Captain Rowley, on the English frigate the Briton. Rowley's orders are to "cruise three months" (XXIV, 418) in a specified area of the Atlantic, searching for American ships to inspect or French vessels to fight. Of course, Cooper does not chronicle ninety weary days and nights of heel-and-toe watches by the crew. His knowledge of

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60 how to present a good tale precludes much more th a n th e briefest summary of the cruise: "More than t wo m ont h s passed without the Briton's speaking, or even seeing, a single sail!" While this hunt by the crew may well be the greatest number of days devoted to this action in all the Cooper canon, the one sentence summary of the action itself--which is rendered in the negative--does not offer an extended action sequence presentation. Even when Cooper has the opportunity to present a mimetic search of extended duration, as he does here, he has the good sense not to weary the reader with one. Characters often lose things or need things or places they have not got. Most hungry characters in the wilderness must devote much time to hunting for food. All hunting generates action which is describable and which may be of some narrative interest. However, hunt action is not as major an action type as are journey or quest actions. Most hunts are brief actions; long hunts are typically presented in recapitulative fashion. These three action types are similar in that they all arise from internal promptings. The questing character has the strongest personal compulsion to act. His own evaluation of what is real and important to him forces him to keep on acting in the attempt to gain union with his quest object; the quester dri v es himself unmercifully into action. He seems a most peculiar

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61 individual to those characters who observe him. Unlik e the quester, the journeyer is a usual human typ e who displays a universal action. While the journeyer m ay act for any of several reasons--to return home, found a home, escape, explore, or just keep in motion--his action is familiar and his reason for acting logical. Just so are the acts of the hunting or searching character. His needs are usually ascertainable and comprehendable and his acts are rational. All people hunt and journey. One kind of journeyer, the questing character, acts irrationally, but the actions he does are describably human. All three action types arising from internal motivations are mimetic. Further, they provide both brief and extended structures which Cooper uses to craft effective narratives. Long journeys or brief hunts, extended quests or fleeting searches, vignettes of escape or voyages of exploration--all these acts shape and direct Cooper's works. But it is not only the inner-directed acts that generate motion; three outer directed action types contribute as effectively to the structure of Cooper's tales.

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62 Notes 1. Definitions from Webster's New Collegiate Dictionary, 2d ed. 2. Janis P. Stout, The Journey Narrative in American Literature (Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press, 1983) 3. 3. Stout 247. Cooper is the first internationally successful American author to employ journey action effectively in his work. Many fictions by nearly all subsequent American authors make good use of journey action. This phenomenon illustrates both the apparently inexhaustable relevance of this action for American artists and audiences and also explains one reason why Fenimore Cooper's fictions continue to appeal to modern readers. 4. Leland s. Person, Jr., in "Cooper's The Pioneers and Leatherstocking's Historical Function," Emerson Society Quarterly 25 (1979): 1-10, notes the departure of Natty at the close of The Pioneers. "A similar splitting up of the main cast recurs in each of the Leatherstocking novels" (1). Journey is often used in the final chapter of Cooper's works, not merely in the Leatherstocking tales, leaving many narratives in the same state of "motion" as they opened, albeit in a different location sometimes. 5. Percy G. Adams, Travel Literature and the Evolution of the Novel (Lexington: The University Press of Kentucky":1983) presents another study of travel literature. In Chapter 5, Adams discusses what he considers to be the six basic "movements" in literature: 1) The Journey, as found in Tom Jones 2) The Wandering, as found in Huckleberry Finn 3) The Quest, as found in Sir Gawain 4) The Pilgrimage, as found in Pilgrim's Progress 5) The Odyssey, as found in The Odyssey 6) The Going-Forth, as found in The Red Badge of Courage Adams does treat thematic concerns, motifs, and character types; however, his thesis is broad and its development is diffused. A study of Cooper's actions yields but few insights when approached via the use of Adams' ideas. 6. Stout 30.

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63 7. stout 31. Exploration is a primary activity of the heroine in much Gothic literature. Often that exploration is a quest for some object known or surmised. Cooper's use of such action is limited, for his romances do not follow the formula for the established Gothic tale. 8. In the sense that Antarctica remained unexplored uritil long after Cooper died, the exploratory voyages by the crews of the two Sea Lions could be labeled "Imaginary Voyages" of sorts similar to that found in Poe's Narrative of !2.:_ Gordon Pym (1838). However, Cooper presents this exploration as a realistic journey. This may be seen when the journey of the Sea Lions is contrasted with the journey of John Goldencalf in The Manikins or Mark Woolston in The Crater. I treat the"Imaginary Voyage" later in this chapter. 9 Stout 31. 10. Stout 3 2. 11. Stout 3 3 12. Stout 42. 13. Stout 45. 14. Stout 66. 15. Stout 68. 16. In 1836 Cooper offered the world his first "Gleaning" from Europe. Since Cooper's avowed purpose is not "story" in these works, it is not surprising that his use of action should function in a much different manner than it does in his tales. In the non-fiction, the action of the travel leads directly to description of picturesque scene or to idea. Cooper moves to the proper place quickly and gets on with the static aspects of his true purpose. While Cooper's "gleanings" utilize action, they do not tell "tale." In Notions of the Americans (1828) the return to home is to an-American home. As Cooper's fictions reveal, this return to an American home is the "Return to Home" which was the most congenial to this author. 17. This is a remarkably effective moment in the tale. Lionel Lincoln, unbeknownst to himself, is actually the son of Sir Lionel Lincoln, which personage is this very Ralph himself. Ralph is later revealed to

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64 be an escaped lunatic, Lionel has inherited a propens it y toward this mental dysfunction, and the narrat iv e closes with all the major characters either dead or fled the nascent republic. The returns to "home" here lead to insanity or to violent death. The doubled and redoub l e d returns seem a most deft example of Cooper's art. The ambivalence of historical Americans, torn between loyalties both to England and her traditions and to America and her potential, seems perfectly embodied in the characters' many disordered movements and actions and, most especially, in the apparent ability to return to two homes. Of course, this ability actually illustrates the inability to properly "return" to either. 18. Stout 105. 19. Stout 111. 20. Different commentators on Cooper have discussed the various "journeys to no end" which the y believe exist in Cooper's canon. George Dekker, in James Fenimore Cooper: The American Scott (New York: Barnes & Noble, 1967), sees in The Wing -and-Wing parallels with a dual Ulysses figure (Ulysses of Homer and Ulysses of Dante). He puts forth the idea of the unending journey but ultimately skirts the issue. Donald A. Ringe, in American Gothic: Imagination and Reason in Nineteenth-Century Fiction (Lexington: The University Press of Kentucky, 1982), describes Harvey Birch of The Ey as "the Wandering Jew" (107). Leland s. Person, Jr., in "Home as Found and the Leatherstocking Seri~(Emerson Society Quarterly, 27 1981; 170-180) establishes the difference between Natty's function as the mythic figure of "return to origin for Americans" (their past), and contrasts his function with the "nervous, rootless energy of the American present" (174). He believes that the Effinghams are ultimately unable to achieve satisfaction on their "religious pilgrimage." He seems to indicate their movement as being a sort of journey to no end, but because his focus is not on the action itself he moves from matters of motion to matters of myth, leaving this particular area unresolved. 21. Cooper's last reference to this legend ma y be found in "The Lake Gun" (1850), a political allegory which offers as the "Wandering Jew" a tree trunk which purportedly has floated for ages about the surface of

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65 Seneca Lake. Indian legend has it that this log is actually an Indian chief, metamorphized for wicked demagoguery. 22. Kay Seymour House, Cooper's Americans (Columbus: Ohio state University Press, 1965) 123. 23. Philip Babcock Gove, The Imaginary Voyage in Prose Fiction (New York: Arno Press, 1975). 24. Gove 87. 25. Gove 178. 26. Donald A. Ringe, Long Fiction of the American Renaissance, ed. Paul McCarthy (Hartford: Transcendental Books, 1974) 108. 27. George Dekker, James Fenimore Cooper: The American Scott (New York: Barnes & Noble, 1967) 125. 28. Stout 247. 29. Peter Revell, Quest in Modern American Poetry (Totowa, New Jersey: Vision Press, 1981) 7. 30. Stout 88. 31. Alexander Blackburn, The Myth of the Picaro (Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press, 1979) 20. 32. Richard Bjornson, The Picaresque Hero in European Fiction (Madison: The University of Wisconsin Press, 1977) 7. 33. Stout 90. 34. Stout 88. 35. As House notes, Natty is part picaro, "like Don Quixote" (307). 36. Warrens. Walker, James Fenimore Cooper: An Introduction and Interpretation (New York: Barnes & Noble, 1963) 41. 37. Daniel Peck, A World .ey Itself: The Pastoral Moment in Cooper's Fiction (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1977) 121.

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66 38. At least, this is what the reader must assume he says. Actually, through what is surely an unfortunate typographical error, the great explorer's words read "Laud to be God!'' Only a Freudian critic or a metacritic could assign the proper reading to the passage. 39. Preface to The Pilot. 40. Cooper's habitual narrative closes with marriage or the promise of immediate marriage and new journey action. Married couples either occupy homes or move directly toward attaining stable homes. Closing journeys, which often balance the habitual opening journey actions, take the journeyer toward certain safety; quest action, such as lovers often engage in, lead the quester into unanticipated scenes and dangers. 41. D. H. Lawrence, Studies in Classic American Literature (London: Martin Secker,1933) 51.

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CHAPTER THREE STALK, FIGHT, CHASE AND JOURNEY AGAIN "You remind me of the necessit y o f b e ing in motion. Adieu." Miles Wallingford (xv, 3 6 0) Journey The acts e x amined in Chapter One are inter n a lly motivated, or self-directed actions. The three m ai n externally-motivated, or other-directed act i ons are th e stalk, the fight or battle, and the chase. Bu t t o begin a discussion of these, one must first ret u rn to journey, for some journey types are clearl y ot h er directed. Travelers making rendezvous may journey solel y a t the direction of the other person. Messengers and guides direct their courses according to d ictates f r om other people. Soldiers at all l evels of comma n d us u a ll y move in response from their superiors. A fter th e b a ttl e is over, these soldiers may either regroup an d ad v a n ce or retreat and disperse as a result of the actio n s of the foe. Hostages, prisoners, an d capt iv es m o v e so l e ly 67

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6 8 at the discretion of their guards. And a ny p e r s on, ashore or--especially--afloat, may find him se lf suddenly having to act solely in response to forces of nature. The pioneer fleeing a raging forest fire performs other-directed acts as surely as does the boater traversing a rapids or the mariner harried, buffeted, or shipwrecked by a tempest. In The Last of the Mahicans Cora and Alice spend the entire book, save for their brief interlude at Fort William Henry, in movements directed by either Natty, their father, the Indians, or--in Alice's case--a husband-to-be. There is merit in the claim that Cooper's heroines' movements are overwhelming ly controlled by a mate, a father, a brother, or a designated male agent. A vast number of Cooper's females are passed through their narratives lik e 1 "Fortune's Footballs," either as actual captives or as apparent ones. All of Cooper's well-bred and dutiful heroines are bound to obey, to attend, and--if the ma l e authority figure wishes to move--to follow their men. In this sense, the women are hostages to their upbringing and to their emotions or vows. Such females are actually captives of their author's vi sual ization of "proper" female duty and conduct. The ref in ed h eroine

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69 should always "live out of herself, as it might be, an d in the existence of those whom she estee med or lov e d" (Miles Wallingford; VI, 295). But the "captivity narrative" as it is usua lly described is a specific narrative form. Beginning with the 1682 publication of Mary Rowlandson's own tale of captivity, this narrative was a distinct American type. After the latter part of the eighteenth century, the original form transformed, according to Richard Slotkin, 2 from a "fearful" narration to an "imaginati v e" one. While Louise K. Barnett gives a later date for the transformation, she agrees that the original capti v ity narrative was finished as a force before Cooper began to 3 write. The transmogrified narration of captivity was a tale of "overt fiction in which the horrors and travails of the frontier experience were combined with a complicated romantic plot of English origin. In this amalgam, a set of foreign and artificial conventions was superimposed on the basically real and indigenous 4 captivity events." She calls this later form the "frontier romance" and notes that it was influenced by Scott. Both Slotkin and Barnett agree that Cooper offers well-developed examples of this later form, Barnett finding The Last of the Mahicans to be "an excellent paradigm of the multiple captivit y plot" ( 62 )

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7 0 and Slotkin discussing both The Prairie and The Deerslayer in his Chapter 13, "The Leatherstocki ng Myth. II In the "romantic" or "imaginati ve" captiv ity narrative several necessary characters appear 1 ) A maiden, passive 2 ) A male, young and white 3) A frontiersman, older and the all y 4) A good Indian, friend to 1-3 5 ) A bad Indian, enemy to 1-4 6 ) A white villain, enemy to 1-4 and possibly to 5 of #2 7 ) (Occasionally) An Indian maiden, good. Cooper offers several examples of romantic capti vity narratives, but all of them display variations, of some sort, from the unadorned schema. Inez Middleton is held by white, not Indian, captors in The Prairie; although the six requisite character niches are all occupied, the function of the characters is not typical of the genre. In The Wept of Wish-ton-Wish the captive is the Indian, Conanchet, and the captors are the whites, the Heathcotes. Conanchet's six month captivity in the white community is devoted to attempts by the Puritans to convert him to Christianity. In due time, a y oung female Heathcote, Ruth, is abducted by members of the escaped Conanchet's tribe. Although no part of her captivity narrative proper is directly presented, more than a decade after Conanchet's escape it is discovered that he has married the girl, now thoroughly Indianized

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71 and known as Narra-mattah Soon af t e r h e r r e turn to h e r white home, Conanchet is killed and s h e di e s H e r e the several characters fill several differe nt rol es as the plot complicat i ons develop. In The Pathfinder Mable Dunham is, f or a ti m e, a captive within a blockhouse. She has fu l l freedo m of movement within the structure, but is at the me r c y of the surrounding Indians if she moves outside. All se v e n of the possible character roles are filled i n this t e x t and all the characters assume their correct niches. It is the captivity itself which is atypical. M ab l e i s simultaneously free and captive. In The Redskins a n even more unusual captivity narrative unfolds. T h e captives are white, but they are men: the older w hit e ally, Uncle Ro, and a minister. The "Injins'' are w hit e men, wearing blackface. The captivity is brief, b u t active. Ro and Rev. Warren are whisked by dearbor n to the local meeting house while Mary and H ugh ( #'s 1 & 2 ) follow volitionally. This deformed "capti v it y narrative" serves as an excellent comment o n t h e deranged society which Cooper presents in t h e ta l e. The Last of the Mohicans, is Cooper's masterfu l treatment of a true captivity narrati v e. I n i t, a ll the requisite categories are filled, so m etimes se v era l tim es over, and the actions are representati v e o f t h e g e nr e. Cooper handles the several con v entions o f th e typ e

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72 effectively, including one of the "foreign and artificial" conventions which Scott bequeathed: the characteristic young, white, male hero whose essence of "proper conduct" appears to be the ability to maintain a supreme "self control under trying circumstances". Such a passive young man is notable for his inactivity. "The hero's action was confined to an ideal that all but 5 prohibited activity," one critic notes. This passive, or "wavering," hero receives, rather than does the action. The meaningful action, given to Natty Bumppo or Harvey Birch or Guert Ten Eyke, rushes around the hero or bears him up on the general swell of movement. All too infrequently does the hero step forward to do anything volitional. Like the passive Cooperian heroine, who seems to live only "out of herself," the smitten hero often is immobilized by his passion and seemingly paralyzed by the proximity of his beloved. The adoring hero, enmeshed in "the weakness of passion," must submit "to its power, like feebler-minded and less resolute men becoming little better than the vulgar herd under its influence" (Wing-and-Wing; XXVI, 351). The hero in love is a changed man. From "a very resolute he [becomes] a very irresolute sort of person" (The Oak Openings; XIII, 204). Cooper believes that, "When a man is thoroughly

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73 in love, he is quite apt to be fit for v er y littl e e l se but to urge his suit" (XV, 242). The "Fortune's Football" female and h er f ee bl e" lover are the two perfect types to take center stage i n captivity nairatives, for their roles call for the sor t of passivity that characterizes a proper captive. In The Last of the Mahicans infantile Alice Munro and anxious Duncan Heyward (#'s l & 2) display archet y pal behaviors and obtain the proper reward for their right acts. She is a captive; he is captured when he attemp t s to rescue her; they eventually marry. Natt y of course is the perfect older frontiersman, ally of the young man. The good Indian who lives is Chingachgook; the good Indian who dies is his son, Uncas, the "last" of the Mahicans. The bad Indian is Magua. The white villain is the French commander, the Marquis of Montcalm, whose dastardly machinations precipitate the Fort William Henry "massacre." The role of "Indian maiden, good" is not here filled, although Dew of June (The Pathfinder) illustrates Cooper's knowledge of he r type and his ability to utilize the character effectively. In The Last of the Mahicans, eit h er Chingachgook's deceased but beloved Wah-ta-Wa h ( T h e Deerslayer), the undifferentiated chorus of savage virgins that eulogizes Cora, or the "tainted ' Cora herself fill the supporting female role when re q u i s it e.

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74 The action of the captivity portion of the narrat iv e is exciting; the plot develops according to the plan. However, in The Last of the Mohicans, Cooper writes a captivity narrative with a difference. The difference is that this time the formula works as it should. The formulas exist because they offer a familiar and accepted method of presentation to author and reader. Most of the time, the narratives produced by formula are no better than they ought to be, "familiar" and "accepted." But sometimes a good author can pen a formula tale that transcends its genre. Last of the Mahicans is one such work. Cooper's The It is not just a "good" story; it is actually "excellent." Even when Cooper does not choose to write narratives about captivity, he often writes narratives which include action of captivity as a portion of the tale. Old Major Effingham, in The Pioneers is literally carried through his tale, a captive, of sorts, to his own senility and physical disability. Even Natty Bumppo may "travel" solely in the arms of other people: "As soon as the body of Deerslayer was withed in bark sufficiently to create a lively sense of helplessness, he was literally carried to a young tree, and bound against it" (The Deerslayer; XXVIII, 263). When Natty moves in response to the dictates of other people, though, he usually is able to stand on his own two feet.

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7 5 Arriving at the fort in The Last of the Mahicans, a nd "under the custody of a French officer ... H aw k e y e was dejected. and his arms were even boun d (XV 8 9 ) As an old man in The Pioneers Natty is taken as a "prisoner" from the smouldering ashes of his hut and marched into Templeton to be jailed until his trial. "Presently the Leather-Stocking made his appearance, ushered into the criminal's bar under the custody of two constables" (XXXIII, 733). After justice has been done, Natty is placed in the stocks. The aged trapper Bumppo of The Prairie, along with Paul and Ellen "prisoners" of Indians, must move when compelled "by a mandate . to change their positions" (IV, 237). Characters who journey on the water may, at an y moment, find themselves unexpected "hostages" to natural forces. Even so small and calm a body of water as the Glimmerglass may transport the unwilling traveler to unexpected locales. Natty falls asleep in a drifting canoe When he awakens, he finds his craft has "drifted twice the expected distance; and ... [has] approached so near the base of the mountains that it must inevitably touch [the shore, inhabited by inimical Indians], ... for the drift had amounted to miles in the course of the night" (The Deerslayer; VII, 58 ) If so brief a span on so small an area as this can

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7 6 transport the drifting mariner "miles h ow mu c h g rea ter the unwilling journeyer may be carried b y an a n gr y sea. When, as a seaman says in The Red Ro v e r, m ar in ers find "the sea getting up in an unaccountable m an n er" which may "threaten to engulf all before it" (XV 33 1 ) even a skillful captain may find his craft's movements meeting "neither the wishes of his own impatience nor the exigencies of the moment" (XVI, 337). When Captai n Wilder asks, "Does the ship mind her helm at al l ?" the sailor responds, "Not an inch, sir" (337). These mariners, at the mercy of "an air that apparentl y teemed with a hundred hurricanes" (XVI, 338), find their strenuous efforts too futile "to keep the despoiled hul l from becoming prey to the greedy waters" ( X VII, 341 ) As "the water rushed into the vortex, everything within its influence" yields to the "gaping whirlpool" (349 ) The characters who survive find themselves adrift on a "blind and watery path" (XVIII, 350) in a little boat blown about by an "unwelcome wind'' (351). They are threatened with a journey "across the whole Atlantic" which would force them away from "that land i t is so important to reach" (352). And even when a rescu i ng ship is sighted, their prospects for reach in g t h e craft are not assured; as Wilder states, "T h e gale m a y prevent--in short, many is the vessel t h at i s seen

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77 at sea" (XVIII, 354), but that it proves impo ss ible to approach. A list of Miles Wallingford's very many "captivities,'' as recounted in Afloat and Ashore and Miles Wallingford, could serve as a kind of study of how an active and self-reliant man may be at the mercy of nearly every portion of his world. Miles' first ship, the John, wrecks because Captain Robbins is an incompetent commander. The craft that rescues Miles is bound for Philadelphia. Miles, forced by two men whose desires differ from his own and under the authority of the two, is captive to his superiors. Miles is held a literal captive by Pacific Indians, French privateers, British sailors-of-the-line, French privateers (again), British sailors (again), and an American sheriff's deputy who arrests him for his debts and marches him off to prison. Miles, fated to journey during troubled times, is captive to political enemies and democratic functionaries. Miles is often becalmed and battered by storms; he is cast away twice (from the Tigris' boat off Cape May and from the Dawn), driven severely off course twice (the Cape Horn attempt aboard the Crisis and off Ireland in the Dawn), and repeatedly buffeted by contrary winds. He is captive to nature's whims. Miles is also a captive to society. Miles fears to ask his beloved Lucy to marry him when she is wealthier

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78 than he and moving in a "set" superior to his own station. Finally, Miles is a captive to his own emotions, rushing back to the sea to escape hi s sorro w after his sister's death and shipping out desperately after each supposed rejection by Lucy, whose true affections toward himself he misunderstands repeatedly. Perhaps in this way he is a captive to his own stupidity; at any rate, he is assuredly trammeled by myriad internal and external captors in both the natural and the social spheres. While Miles' may be a noteworthy series of captivities, it is certainly not an atypical series. As Mercedes of Castile illustrates, even as fine a mariner as Christopher Columbus travels always at the mercy of the elements. Inauspicious calms hamper his progress, unpredictable winds cause a loss of reckoning and an uncertainty about the proper course, unfavorable winds prevent landings, and a near-hurricane drives Columbus away from Spain, his proposed destination, and toward Portugal. When flood or fire, avalanche or volcano, ice or bison charge come hurtling out of the environment, 6 people hurry to move away. Ashore, travelers are not as often "captives" of nature; landsmen do move because of natural threats, but only infrequently as "hostages" in the same way that a floating character is physically

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7 9 transported "by" the water. The only a n a logou s mov e m e nt Cooper offers for the "shorebound" charac t e r i s to b e found on horseback, and the analogue i s one C oo p e r specifically recognized. "Two vehitles dashing along a highway, with frightened and runaway teams, would not present a si ght one half as terrific" (Afloat and Ashore; XXV 4 5 1) as do two storm-tossed ships running before the tempest. When even so fine a horseman as the Indian may ha v e trouble, as Hard-Heart in The Prairie does when the grasslands are ablaze, how could it not be that white men, and females most especially would be equine hostages, propelled unwilling through space. In The Pioneers the "captives" are asleigh. When Richard mishandles the team, the confused horses, "dancing up and down with that ominous movement which threatens a sudden and uncontrollable start," plunge in such a way that two riders are "thrown" and Richard is pitched "some fifteen feet" (IV, 568) through the air into a snowbank. In Satanstoe the combination of a sle i gh ride behind matched blacks and a partial thaw followed by a snap cold enough to render the surface of the Hudson River apparently stable creates a memorable late night return from a dinner engagement. Corny Littlepage an d Anneke Mordaunt end up in a horseless sleigh perched o n ....

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8 0 a sinking block of ice, battered by th e s w i ft c ur re n ts of the Hudson. The horrific "grating or grinding of t he i ce sounded like the rushing of heavy winds, or t he incessant roaring of a serf. . The ragged barriers set slowly but steadily down and the whole river seemed to ... be in motion" ( XV I, 2 7 5 ) Past the couple, "like the tempest," rushes an empt y sleigh, its horses "maddened by terror," that rol l s an d tumbles across the broken ice. The two scramble up a mound of piled ice as "a torrent" of water submerges their previous perch. This "floating island" (XVII, 276) of theirs shoots "into an eddy, and turning slowl y round" (278) bears them away from the shore. They pick their way across the "confused pile," waiting for "an y contact with the shore" that might offer them a means to safety. "Several times did it appear ... that [the] island was on the point of touching ... and as often did it incline aside" (280). A "small cake of ice floating in between" eventually provides a "bridge" (281) to land. Behind them, the Hudson i s "c h aos rushing headlong between the banks" (282). A house, a complete bridge "of some size," and a sloop flash past "with fearful rapidity" as the escaped capti v es turn homeward through the snow.

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81 In many ways, the journeying characte r m a y mov e at the direction of some external force. Sa v e in a fu lly developed captivity narrative, most other-directed journeys are action segments of relatively brief duration. While they continue, the actions forced upon journeyers may well be intensely important to the characters who are compelled to move. However, most characters in Cooper's fictions captured and controlled by external forces effect escapes from their situations with rapidity. Of course, true captivity narratives offer lengthy action during which the capti v e i s un ab l e to escape. As some of Cooper's characters show, the lengthiest captivities are emotional. Such captivit ies are demonstrably self-imposed and are as "self-directed" as can be any human activity. Stalk: To Approach By stealth "Here are the Mahicans and I on one end of the trail, and rely on it, we find the other though they should be a hundred leagues asunder!" The Last of the Mahicans -----n
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82 or flood. While it is perfect ly po ss ible for an thropo morphized animals or personified forces a lon e to engage in conflicts, e x amples of this t yp e of act ion are not 7 found in Cooper's works. Cooper craf ts narratives which describe real beings in conflict wit h other humans, natural forces, or creatures; occas ionall y nature does produce conflicts between purel y natura l forces, but all such oppositions are rendered through 8 the consciousness of a human mind. With these thr ee actions, Cooper has twice the narrative possibil ities as he had with quest or hunt or most forms of journe y With stalk and fight and chase, the author can give the point of view either to the pursuer or to the prey. The author can even alternate between the two. While search or hunt, as Chapter One defines it, depicts actions done by characters who wish to fill a certain lack in themselves, stalk describes actions characters do when a particular external goal has been identified and is being approached. The stal k er engages in certain movements which the hunter does not ex hibit The stalker is always quiet. The stalker uses his environment as cover for himself, creeping through tall grasses or squatting behind rocks or flitting from tree to tree or submerging himself beneath water. Th e stalker moves in response to the actions of his prey; if the prey looks in the predator's direction, the stal k er

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83 stops and seeks to hide. When the pre y 's a tt e ntion goes elsewhere, the stalker moves again quiet ly tow ar d his goal. A stalk is often action of fairly brief du rat i o n As may be expected, Natty Bumppo stalks and is stalked throughout his life. Near the opening of The Deerslayer, Hurry Harry and Natty hear a noise in t h e forest near the canoe in which they float. Both the adventurers started, and each extended a hand toward his rifle .... "Put your paddle in the water, and send the canoe to that log; I'll land, and cut off the creatur's retreat up the p'int, be it a Mingo or be it only a musk-rat." As Hurry complied, Deerslayer was soon on the shore, advancing into the thicket with a moccasined foot, and a caution that prevented the least noise. In a minute he was in the center of a narrow strip of land, and moving slowly down toward its end, the bushes rendering extreme watchfulness necessary. Just as he reached the center of the thicket, the dry twigs cracked again .... Hurry heard these sounds also, and pushing the canoe off into the bay, he seized his rifle to watch the result. A breathless minute succeeded, after which a noble buck walked out of the thicket. (III, 27) The prey may either become aware of the stalk, as this "noble buck" does, or it may remain in ignorance of the approaching stalker, as do the stalked creatures in the opening chapter of The Pathfinder. Charles Cap, Mabel, Arrowhead, and his Indian wife are travers i ng t h e woods when they sight smoke from a domestic fire an d, unable to "determine whether the sign that others were in their vicinity was the harbinger of good or e vil ( I, 298 )

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84 they decide to "go toward the fire, and ascer t a in who had lighted it" (300). Arrowhead, scr utinizing th e woods as intently as "a trained pointer, while h e w a it s his master's aim" (298), leads the party. For t h e first half mile no other caution beyond a rigid sile nce was observed; but as the party drew nearer to the spot where the fire was known to be, much greater care became necessary" (300). As they move forward their footsteps "gradually became lighter," their scrutiny "more vigilant," and their bodies "more carefully concealed" by the "rustic columns . or trees" ( 301 ) The stalkers decide Mabel should approach the three men who sit around the fire "eating their grub" ( 301 ) So, Mabel advances, alone, toward the group seated near the fire. Although the heart of the girl beat quick, her step was firm, and her movements, seemingly, were withou t reluctance. A death-like silence reigned in the forest, for they, toward whom she approached, were too much occupied in appeasing that great natural appetite, hunger, to avert their looks for an instant from the important business in which they were all engaged. (302) When Mable steps on a dry stick, Natty and his companions rise to their feet to greet her. Here Natty is the object of a friendly stalk, but he is often involved in an inimical one. A stalk may be of extremely brief duration. In The Pioneers Natty is chatting with travelers. Suddenly h e "held up his finger with an expressive gesture for

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85 silence. He then moved softly along the m ar gin of t h e road, keeping his eyes steadfastly fixed on the bran c hes of a pine. When he had obtained such a position as h e wished, he stopped, and ... as soon as the rifle bore on the victim drew his trigger" (I, 556 ) In The Last of the Mahicans Natty, Uncas, and Chingachgook, resting in the forest and feeling some hunger, discuss the local situation. Unexpectedly, Natty observes "the biggest antlers I have seen this season, moving the bushes below the hill" (III, 19). They decide not to hazard a rifle shot, so "Uncas threw himself on the ground and approached the animal with wary movements. When within a few yards of the cover, he fitted an arrow to his bow with the utmost care" (19). In an instant, the buck falls. This is the stalk stripped to its essentials. Two parties must be proximate, either through serendipitous chance or directed action. The stalker must identify its prey through sensory input, such as sight or sound or smell. The aggressor then responds physically, moving surreptitiously to approach. The stalk in The Pathfinder leads to a friendly 9 meeting and a resultant journey. The stalk in The Last of the Mahicans leads to conflict and a sudden death. Stalk, as will be discussed in Chapter III, is often an action which begins a chain of e v ents.

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8 6 The discussion of action by recourse t o suc h r igid categories as the six delineated here nat u ra lly l ea d s t o some problems of classification. The trac k i ng or trailing of prey illustrates this point. "F ollo w ing a trail" is a demonstrably other-directed action. B u t sometimes it is all but impossible to determ i ne i f "trailing" be stalk action or chase action. In b ot h groups of action, the pursuer has a clear focus on h i s object, either through sight, sound, or with recourse to a tangible proof of passage. While, if the point of view is helpful, some instances of stal k present c l ear proof that the prey knows itself to be in danger, at other times the extent of the prey's knowledge cannot b e known. Surely, the tracker on the trail of an unwa ry antagonist is stalking. The movements of two opponents both of whom are known to each other is chasing. T h e actions which fall in between the two categories are the difficult ones to label, as the following example from Satanstoe illustrates. Corny, Susquesus, Guert, and Jaap know there to be hostile Indians in the woods around Mooseri d ge the Littlepage homestead. As soon as the party ascertains that their hut is unoccupied, the whites and Jaap e n ter the structure while Susquesus, a friendly I n d i an cas t s about for signs in the woods. He finds evidence of t h e enemy. After a meal, the men decide they are p ro b a bly

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87 as safe spending the night where they are as atte m ptins to travel through the dark woods. They sec ure th e do or. During the night Susquesus wakens Cor ny, an d th e two slip out into the woods to listen. Hearing a chil l ing cry, they attempt to locate the origin of the sound; and, when they near the place they believe to be the correct one, they stop and select "the dark shadows of two or three young pines . where, by getting with in their low branches, [the two men] are completely concealed from any eye" (XXV, 418). Agonized groans echo through the night. When day finally breaks, Susquesus uses "the greatest caution in loo ki ng around before he [leaves] cover . peeping through such openings as offered" (421). A bloody corpse meets their gaze. Susquesus again reads the signs on the forest floor, noting the traces left by their foes. When the two arrive at the hut again, they take a "long and distrustful survey of the forest" before they venture a close approach. When the news of the bloody night's deeds has been discussed, the four men, wishing to contact some allies whom they know to be nearby but whom they cannot signal to with a rifle shot because the sound would alert their foes, set off throug h the woods, their "senses ... keenly on the alert" and a voiding "everything like a cover that might conceal am bu s h ( 426).

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88 Twenty more pages of descr iption follow The fo u r continue to move in response to their enem y, but not in any clearly identifiable manner. Th e party co v ers mil es of ground, and never sights the first Indian, besides Susquesus. The stalk movement is protracted in Satanstoe, but it is not very well focused. What Susquesus learns from his reading of tracks is not v er y helpful, nor is the action the party takes very meaningful. While a "proper" tracker may learn much from examination of the "spoor," most characters never notice the "trace" at all, and many who do e xamin e the "sign" fail to understand what they have seen. Many stalks begin as track readings; many stalks abort before the characters have the chance to frame a proper response to the trail. But, like stalk proper, a good reading of the trail may lead to a closing of the distance between two parties. Both actions can offer entries into other forms of action. Fight: A Struggle, Contest, Contention, Competition, or War "The battle is not always to the strong, neither is the race to the swift." The Pilot (XIV, 80) The nomenclature for fight action is diverse, probably both because human beings engage in so many

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8 9 types of fights and at so many leve l s a nd a lso b eca use the human species is so aware of and so i n t eres t e d in such conflicts. When the strife inc lud es m a ny individuals whose actions are centrall y or d ered th e conflict is named a war and the resultant actio n l a b e l e d a battle, an offensive, a skirmish, or, perhaps, an "action" or a "brush." Actually, for the purposes o f fiction, "battles" during "war" are practica l ly ne v er described; the language cannot convey the experience an d the human mind cannot properly encompass the magnit ud e of the action. A recitation of events in an y wa r l eads invariably to history, and that is not the concern of 10 the storyteller who wishes to spin a "good tale." Cooper very often does make use of a war as the containing framework for a narrative. Beginning with inclusion of the Napoleonic Wars in Precaution and continuing right through the canon to The Oak Openings (1848), which includes a peripheral conflict generate d by the War of 1812, Cooper's texts utilize historical warfare. The conflicts he treats span a perio d f rom 1740, the year Natty in The Deerslayer is in v ol v e d i n action preparatory to the French and I nd i an War ( 17 5 4 1763), to 1848, the year Stephen Spike in Jac k Ti er smuggles gunpowder to the enemy during the Mex i can War. In just about half of the tales Cooper wr o te war or rumor of war contributes to the depicte d ac tion

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9 0 Cooper treated the global war which might b e st be called the British "War for Empire" (17 541763 ) in The Wept of Wish-Ton-Wish, Satanstoe, The Pathfinder, Th e Last of the Mohicans, and The Deerslayer. In Amer i ca the actions of this war are called "The French and Indian War." The continental European actions resulting simultaneously are known as "The Seven Years' War." In The Red Rover Cooper utilizes a setting not strictl y American, so the war is known by the latter name in this tale. The war he treated next most frequently in his fictions is the American Revolutionary War (1775-1783 ) Lionel Lincoln, The .Ey_, and Wyandotte utilize the conflict ashore and The Pilot asea. The "Napoleonic Wars" (1805-1814) provide battle action in Precaution, Miles Wallingford, and The Wing-and-Wing. The 1745 conflict of the "Jacobite Rebellion" underlies The Two Admirals; the "quasi-war" between the United States and France supports much action in Afloat and Ashore. When most effectively woven into the texture of a tale, battle action provides a gripping focus. The outcome of battles often determines the fate of the characters. The scope of the conflict augments the purely individual importance of the actors and lends a more universal interest to the actions of the specific players. Even when the battle action is not integral to the text, it allows Cooper to add e x citement and a c tion

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91 which, although rather peripheral, is mimetic and serviceable. In Precaution, which offers Cooper's first use of battle, the struggle is of this second, relatively peripheral, type. Cooper does not have recourse to war until his penultimate chapter, for the previous 47 chapters have treated "matters of the heart.'' Perhaps the author himself felt his text needed a less restricted field as it neared its conclusion; he switches his focus to war. The Napoleonic conflict, "which for a time threw the peace of the world into the scale of fortune," provides action to conclude Cooper's first narrative. After all the birth mystery plots have been unraveled and the numerous marriages have transpired, Cooper turns to war. Napoleon had commenced those daring and rapid movements, which for a time threw the peace of the world into the scale of fortune, and which nothing but the interposition of a ruling Providence could avert from their threatened success. As the -~-th dragoons wheeled into a field already deluged with English blood, on the heights of Quatre Bras, the eye of its gallant colonel saw a friendly battalion falling beneath the sabers of the enemy's cuirassiers. The word was passed, the column opened, the sounds of the quivering bugle were heard for a moment above the roar of the cannon and the shouts of the combatants; the charge, sweeping like a whirlwind, fell heavily on those treacherous Frenchmen, who to-day had sworn fidelity to Louis, and to-morrow intended lifting their hands in allegiance to his rival. "Spare our life in mercy," cried an officer, already dreadfully wounded, who stood shrinking from the impending blow of an enraged Frenchman.

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9 2 An English dragoon dashed at the cuirassier, a nd with one blow severed his arm from his bod y "Thank God," sighed the wounded officer, sinking beneath the horses' feet. His rescuer threw himself from the sadd l e, and raising the fallen man inquired into his wounds. It was Pendennyss [the hero], and it was Egerton [an acquaintance]. (XXXXVIII, 717-18 ) Here, with Cooper's first use of battle, are found the general characteristics of his habitual treatment of this action. A general, panoramic sweep over the setting is offered. The general rapidly gives way to a particularized vignette of local action. Conversation usually ensues, amidst the frenzy. A few paragraphs later, Cooper offers his second battle; this time he dwells on the sentimental hero and so avoids any description of real action, save for the mounting of a horse. As the opening cannon of the enemy gave the signal for the commencing conflict, Pendennyss mounted his charger with a last thought on his distant wife and gave the remainder of the day to duty. Who has not heard of the events of that fearful hour, on which the fate of Europe hung as it were suspended in the scale? On one side supported by the efforts of desperate resolution, guided by the most consummate art; and on the other defended by a discipline and enduring courage almost without a parallel. The indefatigable Blucher arrived, and the star of Napoleon sunk. Pendennyss threw himself from his horse, on the night of the eighteenth of June ... with the languor that follows unusual excitement, and mental thanksgiving that this bloody work was at length ended. (XXXXVIII, 718)

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93 Cooper relegates all of the action to Bluch er's arrival, neglecting to give even one battlefield act to Pendennyss. The nascent author disposes of th e B a ttle of waterloo, for so this lifeless fray was, with the phrase "the star of Napoleon sunk." Yet, the basic pattern remains. The central character moves into the background as the battle scene is offered in large scale. Once the large action is met ("Blucher arrived"), Cooper shifts the focus to a close-up on the main character. Even in this faltering delineation Cooper uses this structure. In Cooper's next published work, The .Ey, the battle scenes are well-developed throughout. Here is the first narrative where Cooper "found his voice," and, from Introduction to conclusion, the voice tells of war. "The dispute between England and the United States of America, though not strictly a family quarrel, had many of the features of a civil war," Cooper relates, in the "Introduction" (443). To conclude the narrative, Cooper offers more war. "It was thirty-three years after . that an American army was once more arrayed against the troops of England; but the scene was transformed from the banks of the Hudson to those of the Niagara" ( XXXV 6 5 3 ) A young Captain Wharton Dunwoody and a nameless o ld man meet coincidentally just before battle. Of course,

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94 the old man is Harvey Birch, the titular hero. B e fo re Dunwoody has the opportunity to ascertain Birc h 's t r u e identity, the men are "interrupted by sudden and h e a v y explosions of artillery, which were immediately fo ll owe d by continued volleys of small-arms, and in a few minu t es the air was filled with the tumult of a warm and wel l contested battle" (655). The men move toward the American camp, which is a scene of activity. Everything in the American camp announced an approaching struggle. At a distance of a few miles, the sound of the cannon and musketry was heard above the roar of the cataract. The troops were soon in motion, and a movement made to support the division of the army which was alread y engaged. The summit of [a nearby] hill was crowned with the cannon of the British, and in the flat beneath was the remnant of Scott's gallant brigade, which for a long time had held an unequa l contest with distinguished bravery. A new line was interposed, and one column of the Americans directed to charge up the hill .... During the last of these struggles, the ardor of the youthful captain [Dunwoody] ... urged him to lead his men some distance in advance, to scatter a daring party of the enemy. He succeeded. (XXXV, 655-656 ) Immediately after the battle, Captain Dunwoody hunts for the old man, finds his body, reads the paper in the tin box the corpse grasps, and discovers Birch's true identity. One further sentence closes the tale. Here in The ...E_y and, for the most part, in a ll of Cooper's succeeding narratives, the movement from general battle action to particular functions effectively and is presented intelligentl y The actions

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95 of the main character are well-integrated into th e larger panorama of the battle as a whole. W h atever conversation ensues, whatever information i s d isco v ere d, whatever action eventuates in the close-up scenes is augmented by the surrounding, larger battle. Sea battles, too, exhibit this general presentation. Cooper's first sea tale, The Pilot, is set during the same era as is Harvey Birch's story. The action, of course, does not occur in the same location. The fighting that occurs in The Pilot is described as "desperate battle!" (XXX, 206) and "battle" (208, 209, 212); and even though the scope of the action is quite limited, it displays the characteristic narrowing of focus which typifies such presentation. Still, the "fight" (208, 210, 212) or "struggle" (209) between British and American combatants offers exciting action. Cooper's next sea narrative offers no battles. This tale, The Red Rover (1828), occurs just after Quebec has fallen to British forces in 1759, and the action recounts piratical adventures. The next sea story from Cooper's pen, The Water-Witch (1830) treats a peaceful era, the 1740's, and describes small fights of purely personal concern. It is with The Two Admirals ( 1842 ) that Cooper, after a long time away from telling tales of the sea first offers a full-blown naval war. J

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96 The first sentence of The Two Admirals descr i bes the war as that one "which it is the fashion in America to call 'the old French war'" and places the action "in th e other hemisphere, and on the coast of the mother country" (I, 453). The action treats a portion of "the naval warfare of the period ... between the year 174 0 and that of 1763" (I, 453). Americans loyal to England and fighting in her wars figure predominately in this tale. Sir Gervaise Oakes, a Whig, is Vice Admiral of the British fleet and is second in command to Rear Admiral Richard Bluewater, a Tory. These men are the titular heroes of the tale. The French fleet is under the orders of Comte de Vervillin. Going into the major battle sequence, the British have eleven capital ships to the thirteen of the French. The battle rages for three chapters, involving, more than a score of named ships which chivy for different advantageous positions through a gale. Yet always the description takes the same general structure, panoramic to particular. Again, All was quiet, and seemingly, deathlike, in the English ships. The people were at their quarters ... the portions of the crews stationed on [the lower] decks were buried in obscurity, while even those above were still partially concealed by the half-ports .... Sir Gervaise remained on the poop. (XXII, 625) The scene was now animated, and not without a wild magnificence. The gale continued as heavy as ever, and with the raging of the ocean, and the

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97 howling of the winds, mingled the roar o f artillery, and the smoky canopy of ba ttl e. At this instant Greenly (captain of th e Plantagenet] reappeared on the poop h is own s hip having ceased to fire for severa l m in utes "Well, Greenly, the main-deck guns [ o f a French vessel] are at least scaled said S ir Gervaise, smiling. (XXII, 6 2 8) The diversity of Cooper's nomenclature for figh t action is practically overwhelming: charges and a tt ac ks and thrusts and sorties and dashes and rallies and movements and advances and offenses and rushes are met with repulses or escapes or captures or returns or offensives or repartees or massacres or pursuits or rescues or retreats or withdrawals or evacuations or with hunts or with chases. But, whatever the name, whenever the setting, wars and battles exhibit the swift movement from general to specific. In an analogous manner to his habitual presentation of landscapes viewed, Cooper narrows his focus on his action. The author seems most comfortable with the particulars of his scenes. When setting a scene, he begins with a general vista and then examines a smaller portion of the setting. Every text illustrates this structure. Almost every battle action presentation reveals the same type of structure, as Cooper moves from general to specific, sharpening the focus upon the individual character and the discrete action.

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9 8 When Cooper has already established a n arr o we d focus, as he does in the struggles which are b es t n a m e d "fights," the characteristic movement is absen t b eca us e the particular is already in view. Corny Littlepage, the first person narrator of Satanstoe, recounts a fight from his boyhood. Corny was chatting with little Anneke Mordaunt. "A butcher's boy, who was passing, ru d el y knocked an apple out of Anneke's hand, and caused her t o shed a tear. I took fire at this unprovoked outrage, and lent the fellow a dig in the ribs .... We both stripped .... I soon found myself the best fellow. I gave the butcher's boy a bloody nose and a black eye" (II, 42). The details of the action differ in every fight, bu t any specific struggle offers serial action detailed specifically. Any particular effective fight may serve for example as well as might a dozen or a score. The following fight from The Deerslayer is between Harry and several Indians. The opponents meet within the building on the Hutters' ark. After the fight Tom Hutter's mortal wound is discovered. The struggle is of some duration. A noise like that produced by the fall of a heavy body followed. A deep execration from Hurry succeeded, and then the whole interior of the building seemed alive. The noises ... resembled those that would be produced by a struggle between tigers in a cage .... It appeared as if bodies were constantly thrown upon the floor with

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99 violence, as often rising to renew the s trugg l e . . The combatants were litera lly cage d ... [ inside J the building. . In scenes like these, events thic k en in less time than they can be related .... At this instant the door flew open and the fig ht was transferred to the platform, the light and the open air. A Huron had undone the fastenings of the door, and three or four of his tribe rushed after him upon the narrow space, as if glad to escape from some terrible scene within. The body of another followed, pitched headlong through the door, with terrific violence. Then March appeared raging like a lion at bay, and for an instant freed from his numerous enemies. Hutter was already a captive and bound. There was now a pause in the struggle, which resembled a lull in the tempest. The necessity of breathing was common to all. [Cooper relates in summary how the Indians have come to be inside the building without their weapons.] Chapter XX "Now all is done that man can do, And all is done in vain! My love! my native land, adieu, For I must cross the main; My dear, For I must cross the main." SCOTTISH BALLAD. In the last chapter we left the combatants breathing in their narrow lists .... As yet, no one had been seriously hurt, though several of the savages had received severe falls. . want of breath was the principal loss that both sides wished to repair. Under circumstances like [these] ... a truce ... could not well be of long continuance. The arena was too confined ... to admit of this. Contrary to what might be expected in hi s situation Hurry was the first person to recommence hostilities .... He seized the nearest Huron by the waist, raised him entirely from the platform, and hurled him into the water as if he had been a child. In half a minute two more were at his

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1 00 side, one of whom received a gra v e injury by falling on the friend who had j u s t prece d e d hi m But four enemies remained, and in a h an d to h a nc conflict, in which no arms were used b ut those which Nature had furnished, Hurr y b e li e v ed himse l f fully able to cope with that number of red-s kins "Hurrah! old Tom," he shouted; "t h e rasca l s are taking to the lake, and I'll soon have 'e m a l l swimming!" As those words were uttered, a vi ol e nt kick in the face sent back the injured Indian who had caught at the edge of the platform and was endeavoring to raise himself to its level ... A blow, sent into the pit of another's stomac h doubled him up like a worm that had been trodden on; and but two able-bodied foes remained to be dealt with .... Hurry did not hesitate .... The struggle that succeeded was truly frightful. Hurry first attempted to throw his antagonist. With this view he seized him by the throat and an arm, and tripped with the quickness and force of an American borderer. The effect was frustrated by the agile movements of the Huron, who had clothes to grasp by, and whose feet avoided the attempt with a nimbleness equa l to that with which it was made. Then followed a sort of melee, if such a term can be applied to a struggle between two in which no efforts were distinctly visible, the limbs and bodies of the combatants assuming so many attitudes and contortions as to defeat observation. This confused but fierce rally lasted less than a minute, however, when Hurry ... made a desperate effort, which sent the Huron from him, hurling his body violently against the logs of the hut .... Passing his [Hurry's] hands round the throat of his victim, he compressed them with the strength of a vise, fairly doubling the head of the Huron over the edge of the platform .... The eyes of the sufferer seemed to start forward, his tongue protruded, and his nostrils dilated nearly to splitting. At this instant a rope of bark, having an eye, was passed dexterously within the two ar m s of Hurry; the end threaded the eye, forming a noose, and his elbows were drawn together behind his back .... Almost at the same instant a similar fastening secured his ankles, and his body was rolled to the center of the platform, as helpless and as cavalierly as if it were a log of wood. (The Deerslayer; XIX-XX, 177-18 0)

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101 This fight, as illustrated spans a chapter brea k ; another fight, of sorts, is the bridge Cooper uses between Afloat and Ashore and Miles Wallingford. Although Miles and Drewett are in ad v ersaria l positions because both men love the same young lad y they are both too well-bred to consider fighting one another for h er favor. The "terrific struggle" the two engage in is a confused conflict engendered by Drewett's inability to swim and Miles' determination to rescue the drowning man. Miles, the first-person narrator, leaps into the Hudson "alongside of the drowning young man, just as he went under .... As soon as Drewett's hair was in my grasp, I let him catch his breath .... But the breathing spell ... had the effect just to give him strength to struggle madly for existence" (XXX, 501 ) Miles is soon being strangled by the crazed Drewett. Yet, Drewett may not be quite as "mad" as might be supposed. "God forgive me, if I do him injustice! but I have sometimes thought, since, that Drewett ... gave some vent to his jealous distrust . as he struggled there for life." Miles, with Drewett "riding" (502 ) him down below the surface, confesses, "I thought no longer of saving Drewett's life, but only of saving my own." The fight for life is compelling. We struggled there in the water like the fiercest enemies, each aiming for the mastery, as, if one were to live, the other must die. W e sunk

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1 0 2 and rose to the surface ... n o l ess th an th ree times. . A struggle so terrific c o u ld n o t last long. we sunk a fourth ti m e, and I f e lt it was not to rise again, when ... I saw a lar g e object approaching me in the water, w hi c h in th e confusion of the moment, I took for a s h ark. (502) The "shark" is the Negro slave, Neb, and Miles is rescued, along with Drewett, in the final four paragraphs of the work. "'Pull away, lads, for the sloop,' said Marble, as soon as everybody was out of the river." Afloat and Ashore closes with the observation that "'as for Miles, he'll never drown in fresh water.'" Yet, Miles Wallingford: Sequel to "Afloat and Ashore" has as its first words of text rt is almost impossible to describe minutel y what occurred on the boat's reaching the Wallingford, as to describe all the terrific incidents of the struggle between Drewett and myself in the water .... During ... the horrid scene ... we were raised, or aided, to the deck. (I, 248) Here Cooper returns to the "terrific incidents" which he had previously concluded, opening the second work with what appears to be "cliff-hanger" recapitulation. This technique, although these two examples do illustrate the author's familiarity with the idea, is not Cooper's habitual method of presentation. Indeed, inclusion of the obligatory chapter-heading epigraph to Chapter I of Miles Wallingford, five lines from "Lear," stops the novel's action completely. As these two "bridging" fights show when examined thoroughl y Cooper

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1 0 3 habituall y returns each chapter to a stat i c s t ate b e fore he closes it. V isualizing, as he d oes, his ac tions in "scenes" which operate like acts i n a drama an d whic h "close" and "open" around the c h apter h ea ding s, Cooper breaks up even his fights. Here, his introduction o f the Scottish ballad and the Shakespearean quotation completely destroys the momentum of t h e action. Whenever Cooper presents fight action of lengthy duration, he varies the presentation wit h refocus ing as is evident in the Hurry Harry/Huron fight and the Miles/Drewett struggle. Both long fights also illustrate Cooper's usual focus on only one major combatant, or a very few combatants. As is most usual, one important character fights, overcoming various relatively insignificant opponents, or one other major opponent. The minor combatants are fleetingly introduced and rapidly disposed of If a major opponent is used, the singular "villan" may act in opposition to the main character fo r a more extended period of time. Fights, of course, may be utterly static, purel y verbal competitions. Because such fights generate n o action beyond "jaw action," this type of fight of f ers no promise of description, by either author or cri tic save for a summary of the moral, philosophical, or emot ional positions taken by the opponents and a delineation of

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1 0 4 the mental change, if any, in the respecti v e individuals. While it is true that Cooper's v er b a l fights often reveal thematic concerns and usual ly a l wa y s illuminate character (even the authorial "character" o f Fenimore Cooper himself) this type of exposition delineates static scene, and is to one side of a discussion of proper action in the canon. Discussion of the "proper" fight action in Cooper's fictions is more than a large enough task; sometimes it seems as though every thing in the whole Cooperian cosmos can, and does, fight. Combatants need not be human. In The Pioneers, Elizabeth Temple, accompanied by her faithful old dog, Brave, encounter an enraged panther in the woods. The beasts close in a fight to the death. No words ... can describe the fury of the conflict that followed. It was a confused struggle on the dry leaves, accompanied by loud and terrific cries .... So rapid and vigorous were the bounds of the inhabitant of the forest, that its active frame seemed constantly in the air, while the dog nobly faced his foe at each successive leap. When the panther lighted on the shoulders of the mastiff, which was its constant aim, old Brave, though torn with her talons, and stained with his own blood, that already flowed from a dozen wounds, would shake off his furious foe like a feather, and rearing on his hind-legs, rush to the fray again, with jaws distended, and a dauntless eye .... A higher bound than ever raised the wary and furious beast far beyond the reach of the dog, who was making a desperate but fruitless dash at her, from which she alighted in a favorable position, on the back of her aged foe.

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10 5 For a single momen t on ly co uld th e p a nther remain there, the great strengt h o f th e dog returning with a convulsive effor t But ... as Brave fastened his teeth in the s id e o f hi s en e my ... his frame was sin k ing to the ear th, whe re it soon lay prostrate and he l pless. (XXVIII 7 0 5 7 0 6 ) Combatants need not be sentient. I n Th e Pra i r i e Natty sets a back-fire, creating a fire brea k i n th e grassland, behind which he and his compan i ons ca n find safety. As Natty has it, "'You shall see fire fight fire' and in a very few moments the flames b ega n to recede in every quarter" ( X XIII, 35 8) Sh i ps the m selves, not merely their crews, fight ever y storm at sea. In The Two Admirals the various craft b ear u p "nobly against the fierce strife" (XXI, 612) of their battle against the ocean. They move with "groaning efforts ... very much at the mercy of the elements" (XXII, 620) in "trials of strength" as they manage thei r "struggling" progress through "the boiling element" (620). At times, the sea runs so high "as to render it questionable if a boat would live" (XXIII, 632). In The Pilot a ship battling a storm is seen "saluting, like a courteous champion, the powerful antagonist with wh i ch she was about to contend" ( v, 25) Combatants need not even be plural in number, strangely enough. One human antagonist m a y ac tu a lly "fight" with himself, but such situations as t h ese 1 1 Cooper seems not to have envisioned. H owe v er, h e did

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1 06 imagine a compe l ling fight of nature a g a i n s t i ts e lf In The Sea Lions ice and water converge i n a tit a nic struggle" (XXII, 169). It was an extraordinary sight .. . A s th e cakes of ice were broken from the field, they we r e driven upward by the vast pressure from wit h o u t and the whole line of the shore seemed as if a liv e with creatures that were issuing from the ocea n to clamber on the rocks .... It now ap p eared t o be in activity with fragments of ice, t h at were writhing, and turning, and ris i ng, one upon another, as if possessed of the vital pr i nciple. (171) Combatants need not even touch one another to engage in what must surely be called a "fight." A foot race a dancing contest, a shooting match at target, a horse race, or even a chess match may qualify as a t y pe of "fight." All these actions pit opponents against one another in describable physical ways so tha t a "victor" emerges from the contest, leaving the "vanquished" foe bested. Civilizations of different eras encourage suc h types of "fights" so that members of society may settle their differences without damage to themselves. Of course, affection of mothers, wives, and ch i l d ren for their aggressive males; self-preser v ation i n st i ncts o f the combatants themselves; and what appears t o b e a nearly universal desire in all people to vi ew phy s i ca l opposition by active members of societ y ( "spor t s" ) all contribute to the institutionalization of "safe" f igh ts.

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1 07 Cooper does make use of "safe fights." In Satanstoe Guert and Corny rush downhill in a "race with another sled" (XII, 195). In Mercedes of Castile the European explorers are treated to an "exhibition" of "some of the Indian games" including a trial of strengt h and foot races (XXIII, 377). Antonio, an aged fisherman in The Bravo, unexpectedly wins the Venetian gondola race, a contest which "might be termed the national race" (VIII, 459). People everywhere and in all times have "safe" fights. Even Natty Bumppo is, perhaps, better remembered for his shooting contests than his slaying conquests. In The Deerslayer Natty and Chingachgook have a shooting "trial" (XXV, 236) together. In The Last of the Mohicans Natty proves his identity in a shooting "competition'' (XXIX, 180) against Duncan Heyward. In The Pathfinder prizes are awarded in the "passage of arms" (XI, 374), that justly infamous "shootin' match" in which bullet piles up against bullet 12 in a single hole bored into a tree stump. In The Pioneers the "amusement of shooting the Christmas turkey" (XVII, 624) comes down to a trial between Natty and Billy Kirby. Natty wins all shooting competitionswhen he wants to do so. While Cooper's many "safe'' fights are of interest in the various narratives, this author is justly more known for his more usual fight actions. Readers of Cooper, J

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108 both early and late, are drawn to his living confl i c t s. 13 What was true in 1852 remains true to this day. One reads the accounts of a great battle with the same kind of interest with which he beho lds the grand destructive phenomena of nature, a tempest a t sea, or a tornado in the tropics; yet with a feeling far more intense, since the conflict is not a mere striving of insensate elements, but of living tides of human wrath and valor. With descriptions of petty skirmishes or single combats, the feeling is of a different kind. The reader is enlisted in the fra y a partaker, as it were, in every thought and movemen t of the combatants, in the alterations of fear and triumph, the prompt expedient, the desperate resort, the palpitations of human weakness, or the courage that faces death. Francis Parkman's Review of the Works of James Fenimore Cooper Chase: (Verb) 1. To Pursue, to Follow 2. To Cause to Depart (Noun) 1. The Act of Chasing 2. The Quarry "One had never been known to follow the chase in vain." The Last of the Mahicans --rxxrv,l"s1) A chase, like the stalk or the fight, may be told from the chaser's point of view, from the quarry's point 14 of view, or from an observer's point of view. Cooper's habitual narrative stance throughout the canon is omniscient, with frequent recourse to authorial interjection by the writer persona of Fenimore Cooper. But the narrative persona usually dissolves when action

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1 0 9 sequences are described; this dissol ution is m os t evident in fight sequences and in c h ase ac ti on descriptions. The chase is the most intense action sequence i n Cooper's tales. A ''real" chase admits no interruption before its conclusion; it takes precedence over a l l other states of being and can break into an y other activity. Often bursting suddenly into being, someti m es following careful preparation, the chase explodes in the narrative. Uninterrupted chase action is never of long duration in Cooper's narratives. For, while he may envision a lengthy chase, as is indicated by the sub title of Homeward Bound; or, The Chase, in reality, Cooper does not offer a continuous chase of marked duration in that, or in any other, fiction. Actual chase action is simply too demanding to sustain, both in real life and in mimetic fiction. Human beings and their fictive counterparts must stop, fairly soon, to breathe; must pause, fairly often, to eat; and must sleep, fairly regularly, to live. Chase, abrogating sleep and hunger, thirst and romance, suspiration and cerebration, must end before the actors fall dead of exhaustion. But, while chase action continues, no ot h er human state is quite so electrifying or so importunate. A character on chase lives, and his acts give life to his tale.

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11 0 Cooper first turns his hand to chase in Th e Spy, Precaution presenting no action worth y of the name. Several times in The .y_ Cooper sets up a chase, but he initially fails to develop the action. When Caesar calls to his American loyalist master, "Run--massaHarry--run--if he love old Caesar, run--here come a rebel horse" (V, 472), Harry Wharton walks deliberately to a window to look for the enemy. Later, a chase of sorts occurs, but it is a curiously actionless one: "The troop scattered in every direction, flying from the field as fast as their horses ... could carr y them .... The proximity of the infantry prevented pursuit" (VII, 485). During this confusion, Harry escapes his captors. Again, Caesar says, "Run--nowrun--Massa Harry, run" (487), and this time Harry does so. But his captors do not notice his escape, so no chase follows. A few pages later, the American troops "again venture on the plain, led on in pursuit'' (490), and easily overtake and destroy the remainder of the British soldiers. The American forces, marching homeward after the withdrawal of the scattered British, spot something moving in the darkness. "'Tis a man," says one soldier. The captain looks carefully at the figure for a moment. Wheeling his horse suddenly from the highway, he exclaimed--"Harvey Birch!--take him, dead or alive!" ... The sudden cry ... was heard

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111 throughout the line. A dozen of t h e m e n ... followed the [captain], and their speed th rea t ene d the pursued with sudden termination of t h e race. Birch ... had been seen ... and the chase commenced .... Casting his pack w h ere h e s t oo d, and instinctively tightening the belt he wore, th e peddler betook himself to flight. H e was straining every nerve to gain the wood itself, when several horsemen rode by him but a short distance on his left, and cut him off from th i s place of refuge. The peddler threw himself on t h e ground as they came near him, and was passed unseen. But delay now became too dangerous for him . .. He accordingly arose, and still keeping in the shadow of the wood ... ran with incredible speed in ... an opposite direction to ... the dragoons. A fragment of a wall, that had withstood the ravages made by war in the adjoining fences of wood, fortunately crossed his path. He hardly had time to throw his exhausted limbs over t h e barrier before twenty of his enemies reached i ts opposite side. Their horses refused to take the leap in the dark. (XIX, 501, 502) But one horseman forces his beast over the wall and overtakes Birch. "Stop or die!" was uttered above his head, and in fearful proximity to his ears Harvey stole a glance over his shoulder, and saw within a bound of him the man he most dreaded. Fear, exhaustion and despair seized his heart, and the intended victim fell at the feet of the dragoon. The horse ... struck the prostrate peddler, and both steed and rider came violently to earth. As quick as thought Birch was on his feet again .... The peddler vanished up the side of the friendly rock. (502-503) This is the first properly developed chase Cooper wrote. It contains all the basic components. Opposing forces willing and able to engage in physical action

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1 1 2 are proximate. The aggressor so m e h ow rec ogn i z e s the presence of the prey; in this case, t h e c apt a in see s Birch. The prey, realizing it is i d e ntifi e d b e gin s to move quickly away from the aggressor, w h o f ollo ws as rapidly as possible. The prey may try to hi d e f r om th e chaser, as when Harvey throws himself "on t h e gro u n d ." The prey may attempt to disengage itsel f fr om t he pursuit by moving more quickly than the chase r as w h e n Harvey runs "with incredible speed." The prey may ma k e use of various types of barriers to slow or baff l e the chaser, as when Harvey throws "his exhausted l i mbs ' o v er the fence and all of the horses save one are unable to follow. The prey may even attempt some sort of quick action to stop or overcome the chaser, as when Harvey falls in such a manner as to trip the horse and discommode the rider. Whether through hiding, outrunning, outmaneuvering, or overmastering its pursuer, the pursued attempts an action which will thwart the desire of the chaser. The chased seeks a remove; the chaser, proximity. Nine chapters further into the book Cooper offers another chase. Well able, it would seem to mine this vein of action in more than one way, Cooper here presents a comic chase. The prey of th i s c h ase i s a gang of lawless marauders who had earlier fled to an inaccessible summit of rock. Then "they buried

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113 themselves in the depths of the wood. Finding h owever, there was no pursuit . the leader ventured to cal l his band together with a whistle" (XVIII, 553 ) N i ght has again fallen. The men have eaten a meal and are making plans to revenge themselves on their enemy. At this same time and in this same place is a solitary female, one Betty Flanagan, washerwoman. Suddenly, the night is split by a voice (and it is her voice, although the marauders do not stop to consider that fact) which calls: "This way ... here are the rascals ating by a fire--this way and murder the tieves where they sitquick, lave your horses and shoot your pistols!" The band responds with comic haste; they rushed deeper into the wood, and ... they dispersed toward the four quarters of the heavens" (554). As the men, chased by nothing, flee for their safety, "Betty," who is actually Harvey Birch in disguise, gathers together "such articles of [their abandoned] clothes as seemed to suit her fancy" and deliberately meanders home. The .Ey_ includes another chase stopped by a fence, in Chapter XX, and a final chase, in Chapter XXIX. In this last chase, both pursuer and pursued are mounted. Again Harvey Birch, here accompanied by Henry Wharton, flees the Americans. The horses of Birch and Wharton are "miserable;" the American mounts are "blooded chargers." Harvey speaks, "'There are none before us

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114 that I dread, but there are those behind who w ill giv e us a fearful chase ... The officer is m o u nte d; now ride, Captain Wharton, for your life, and keep at my heels. If you quit me, you will be lost!'" ( XXIX, 623 ) The~ contains three major chases and several minor ones, yet it is not remarkable for its number of chase actions. The Deerslayer contains seven developed chases. Chapter III "Hurry shouted and dashed forward in chase, and for one or two minutes the water foamed around the pursuer and the pursued." ( 27) Chapter VI "Men . fled. Again the flight and pursuit was renewed." (55) Chapter VII When Natty was seen, "the savage gave a loud yell. There was no longer any time for delay; [Deerslayer's] boat was quitting the shore." (64) Chapter IX "The lake is full of savages wading after us!" These wretches rush into the water like hounds following their prey!" (78) Chapter XVII Natty, in the midst of a "pressing emergency," attempts "to gain the beach, and ... the canoe" where Chingachgook waits. (153) Chapter XX "[T]he chase commenced." (186) "A stern chase is a long chase." (187) Chapter XXVII "Concert and order had entered into the chase." (254) Indeed, all of the Leatherstocking tales offer chases. Natty is chased or chases throughout h i s life. The Last of the Mahicans, perhaps best known of the series, is well known as an action tale. Some of t h e

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11 5 best action is chase action. The exten d e d c h ase throug h the fog to Fort William Henry, the even l o n ger hunt / stalk/chase by Natty and companions af t er M a gu a a nd his captives, and the several chases for escaped prisoners from the Huron and Delaware settlements are interspaced with other, less elaborated, chase actions. In The Pathfinder Cooper gives an especially rich chase segment to Natty. Again, he and his companions are traveling to a fort. The companions include Mabel Dunham, journeying to her father, Charles Cap, her uncle, Jasper Western, and Chingachgook; the fort is Fort Oswego; the inimical Indians are the Iroquois. Chingachgook, who has been looking about for "signs," rejoins the others with the news that savages have passed within "a hundred yards" (IV, 318) of the spot. Their position, while marginally secure, could be improved, so they "drop the canoes carefully down the point below, and find another shelter" (319). Completely hidden within a "canopy of leaves," Natty cuts "little trees'' (320) and forces them into the mud to form a "screen" on the water side of the hide-away. The first action taken by the pursued is movement awa y from the immediate threat and a subsequent "goi n g to ground." The characters first attempt to hide; "their shelter was so cunningly devised, and so artfully prepared, that none but an unusually d i strustful e y e

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116 would have been turned for an instant toward th e spot in quest of a hiding-place." Natty, after reconnoitering, declares it to be "the best cover I ever yet got into." The hiding-place is so good that all but one of the Indians pass by it; Chingachgook kills this so lit ary foe when he enters the lair. Then the party bursts onto the river in their canoes, Natty drawing the enemy fire as Mabel, Cap, and Jasper paddle for the opposite shore. Pathfinder causes his canoe to progress with une xp ected motions, dodging the flying bullets, and finally abandons the craft after gaining the safety of the "small rock, which rose ... above the river" (V, 329 ). Natty joins the other whites and Chingachgook arrives and departs to secure a scalp. When darkness falls, they all depart downriver. For a time, they float, but an encounter at some rapids upsets one canoe. Fortunately, all arrive safely at the fort, having hidden, fought, killed, rushed, and canoed rapids during their chase. In The Pioneers Natty and Oliver are chased by a posse; Natty, Oliver, Elizabeth, and Chingachgook are chased by fire; and Natty's dogs chase a deer. In The Prairie the Sioux chase livestock and the Tetons chase bison. More importantly, the Sioux and the Bush party chase Natty and his companions, and Hard-Heart is c ha sed into the river.

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1 17 Every historical romance and ever y sea t a l e o f f e r s chases; many offer numerous examples, In Th e~ o f Wish-Ton-Wish, Eben Dudley, a boarder on h u n t, recou nt s to his friends a chase. The diction of t h e passage an d the distinctly mythic quality of the action itself combine to present a memorable action. I roused a noble buck from his lair ... an d having the game in view, the chase led me wide-of f toward the wilderness .... There was no trail, neither to nor from the spot where the creature had made its lair .... When roused, it took not the alarm, but leaped sportingly ahead, taking sufficient care to be beyond the range of musket, without ever becoming hid from the eye .... [Then, concurrentl y wit h a loud clap of thunder], the buck vanished. (IX, 434) An even more unearthly chase is presented in The Heidenmauer. Berchthold, the count's huntsman, was last seen alive several weeks ago, when the falling ruins of a fiery and collapsing sanctuary apparently killed him. At the request of the "credulous" population who are frightened at tales of the huntsman's continued reappearances, the count leads a "religious procession" back to the Abbey ruins for the first time since the blaze. The outing is made to lay to rest the "wild legend" that the ghostly Berchthold hunts a spectral roebuck at the heels of a pack of li v ing hounds. Picking through the fragments and demolished memorials, the count is surprised to find that the common peop l e have rushed outside. "'What meaneth this'" (X XI X 780),

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118 he demands. A "vassel" replies: "'Hath not my L ord t h e Count seen and heard? Berchthold h at h been a g ai n seen!'" Hearing the sounds, the count himself wavers. "Though he had a vague perception of the inconsistency of living dogs being hunted by a dead forester, still there were so many means of getting over this immaterial difficulty, when the greater point of the supernatural chase was admitted" (781). He moves forward, attempting to present a firm front. A "swift, pattering rush, like that of the feet of hounds" (XXX, 783) surrounds the group. Moments later, the "hounds rush out of the grove, in the swift mad manner common to the animal" and a fainting female falls into Berchthold's arms as he leaps over a tottering wall. He did not die in the fire, of course, and an involved religious vow has kept him hidden since. Fully six chapters of The water-Witch are structured on serial chases. Beginning with Chapter XVII, Cooper presents ships "dashing" (598) after one another, vessels moving "with quick and slight movements of the hound, as he lifts his head ... to scent" (599) a quarry, and craft giving pursuers "the slip" (600). "'We have him now,'" calls a lieutenant (601); shortly thereafter he exclaims, "'What has become of the brigantine?'" (603). When next the elusive brigantine, the Water-Witch is sighted, "the chase" (XVIII, 608)

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1 1 9 begins again; again, she is lost. The fo llowin g morni ng when a veisel is sighted in a fog, the crew i s ra ll ie d ; the mariners do manage to board this time, but t h e y board the wrong ship. At the next dawn, when the Water Witch is found, the pursuers fire upon her with their "chase-gun" (XX, 620), an armament mounted i n the stern. The water-Witch loses two of her important sails, but a storm arises and the two craft are distanced once again. Then the wind shifts, the ships close once more, and a fight appears to be immanent and inescapable, when an unexpected breeze billows the sails of the prey, allowing the Water-Witch to sail away. She "bowed as in the act of a graceful leave-taking and ... left [her pursuers] behind" (XXI, 629). They "endeavor to keep within sight of the chase" (XXII, 631). Here Cooper has recourse to nautical terminology; "the chase" names the prey and not the act of pursuit. By the next dawn the ship has vanished again and the chase is called off. This "chase of the chase," as it may be called, is one of Cooper's lengthiest. A chase aship differs from a chase ashore for several reasons, all of which may contribute to the relative extension of time which a water chase may continue. Because the human beings engaging in the on-board chase do not have to use the i r own muscles to propel themselves through space, the y do

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12 0 not grow rapidly exhausted. Both pursued and purs u e r, when on a ship or a boat or a raft, can take food or drink and rest, even as they engage in the chase act i o n As long as the wind or the current holds, the chase can continue. Also, all large vessels contain many crew members; the sailors are ordered into a hierarchy of command. In such a chain of command, a crew member can be found to press the chase even if the primary actor grows exhausted, receives a wound, or dies. On very small craft this is not true; however, even a one-person canoe can drift while its occupant rests. Chases on water can, and often do, last longer than land chases. But, as the chases in The Water-Witch illustrate, even when the chase has the potential for lengthy duration, Cooper habitually prefers to "break up" the act. In this way, the emotional effect of the chase sequence upon the reader is not dissipated. A chase generates suspense for the reader, arousing a feeling that Cooper chooses never to maintain for an extended period of time without offering at least a partial relief for the reader. Too long a focus on any action generates a feeling of familiarity with the state, and the desired emotional effect is lost. As Cooper himself understood, "Suspense is, perhaps, the feeling of all others that is most difficult to be 15 supported." The chase is one of the best act i ons t o

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121 "liven up" a narrative: "There is always somet hing so 16 exciting in a chase." Because Cooper is conscious o f the potential that this action has, he continual ly writes in such a way that the effect of the action is retained. He consciously manipulates the chase action to heighten the emotional state in the reader. Sometimes intense chase action ends because Cooper simply allows it to "fribble out" of a narrative. The first chase in The .Ey is an example. Sometimes chase action ends rapidly because the act "closes itself" quickly: a capture, a successful escape into hiding, a modulation of action into fight, or a refocusing of purpose by the chaser. Sometimes chase action continues, both with or without interruption, long enough to present a properly "full-blown" chase. This chase has a general structure. In a complete chase, identification of the two actors occurs, both chased and chaser perceiving the necessity of immanent movement. Immediately, the two begin to move in response to the actions of one another. A gradual distancing between the two occurs as the pursued makes use of whatever environmental situations he can identify to hinder his pursuer or to aid himself. Both parties in a chase must maintain this dual external focus, responding to one another and to the physical surroundings they encounter as they move. The prey may

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12 2 resort to several strategies to increase the area between himself and his antagonist: simple speed, duplicity, attainment of powerful allies, secretion in the environment, disabling maneuvers to the mode of transportation or to the actual body of the pursuer, or movement into an environment which daunts the abilities of the pursuer to master. The chase may continue even after visual separation has been effected, if the pursuer is able to follow the trail of the pursued. Most usually, however, the chaser gives up the chase when the chased can no longer be heard or, especially, seen. When the pursuer stops moving toward the pursued, full-blown chase action ends. Often, the pursued continues his evasive actions for a short time further because he is not certain if the chase is over or not. Occasionally, the pursuer may continue to engage in a chase even when the pursued has effected a movement which renders him completely safe from the pursuer. Proper chase action ends as soon as one party ceases to move through space in response to the opposing party. Once chase is complete, a reassessment of purpose occurs for both pursuer and pursued. Normally, both actors return to the action they were engaged in before the chase interrupted their lives. Occasionally, the chase action itself has led to a new situation which engenders new activities.

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123 Even the lengthiest chase is a relatively brief action, as compared to the fictive life of a character. Quest action may engender movement for an entire lifetime; journey action may stretch over months or years; chase action--like stalk, fight, and hunt action--spans a short interlude. Cooper's fictions contain literally thousands of actions and movements; among these are several scores of chases and as many stalks and hunts. Journeys, both short and long, generate even more activity. A mere listing of what action types occur in which narratives yields a vast amount of information which has no ultimate value. What is of value is an examination of how Cooper's actions are ordered. Basically, this author makes use of two action-ordering mechanisms. In all of Cooper's early successful texts, he relies upon the concept of action grounded in a central location, a ''safe" scene closely akin to the stage set of dramatic productions. Characters act "in" this scene. While some of their actions do cause them to leave their scene for a time, they habitually return to the safe stage-like "set'' as soon as possible. Because this technique tends to generate action filled segments that alternate with static interludes occurring at the safe home place, the narratives may be said to order on the basis of discrete segments that join together like the links of a chain.

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124 For this reason, narratives with place as their centr a l ordering mechanism are here called narratives whic h offer "chained" action. Each action is closed, lik e a segment of a chain, but each action is likewise inextricably linked to the next act in the chain of the narrative. Cooper's second action-ordering technique is one he came to after this primary "safe home location" technique had been fully developed as an effective organizational method. The second action-ordering technique offers actions that do not originate in stat ic central locations. In narratives of this type, the doing of the action is the central ordering mechanism. The focus is on the act itself and on the acting character. The acting character in such tales is frequently side-tracked by plot complications which force him to momentarily turn aside from his primary concern, the completion of his motivating act. At such times, the acting character focuses his attention on overcoming the blocking mechanism so as to be able to return to an active state which will further his attempt to complete his primary act. Because the character in such a situation is actually acting on two, or more, levels at the same time, this method of action struct ur e is here called "layered" action. In layered action narratives, the completion of an action returns the

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125 character to his previously active state. P l ace centered--or "chained"--narratives offer charac t ers acting so as to return "home" and rest. Act centeredor "layered"--narratives offer characters who act so as to be able to resume their interrupted act. Notes 1. This designation is taken from the title of a nineteenth-century adventure tale. Henri Petter's The Early American Novel (Columbus: Ohio State University Press, 1971) 289 offers this quotation from the original fiction: "But alas! Fortune, that fickle Goddess, had raised her foot with a design to give him another kick" (Fortune's Football; I, 72). 2. Richard Slotkin, Regeneration tt~ough Violence: The Mythology of the American Frontier, 1600-1860 (Middletown, Connecticut: Wesleyan University Press, 1973) 278. 3. Louise K. Barnett, The Ignoble Savage: American Literary Racism, 1790-1890 (Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press, 1975). 4. Barnett 48. 5. Alexander Welsh, The Hero of the Waverly Novels (New Haven & London: Yale University Press, 1963) 26, discusses this type of hero at length. 6. The movement of a man from a raging fire had a strong hold on Cooper's imagination. See my footnote #8 in Chapter Six below. 7. The Monikins represents the sole narrative in the Coopercanon which contains talking animals. The satire is Swiftian, and the tale is heavily undercut by the conclusion, which reveals that the narrator has apparently imagined the entire tale as a delirium during an illness. For the purposes of this study, the monkeys of Leaphigh (England) and Leaplow (America) function as people. Were it not for their morbid preoccupation with the length (Leaphigh) or shortness (Leaplow) of "caudal

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126 appendages" and some of their unusual philosophies, th e y would be as human as are most of Cooper's suppor ti ng characters. The Manikins are much like Swift's Lilliputians. They speak like men, act like men, and think like men. What Cooper is doing with the narra tiv e might be of passing interest; what action the mon k e y s d o is not. 8. I refer here to either a character observing the scene or to the authorial "personage" who often presents the scene. Sagas and origin myths often tell of titanic oppositions involving no human beings and frequentl y present the events through an objective voice which conjures no human narrator: "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God" (John 1:1). Cooper does not utilize this type of presentation. 9. "Things" may be stalked, as well as sentient beings. Natty does a fine job of stalking a wayward canoe in The Deerslayer; VII, 58 10. Where Cooper's interest was in "recitation of events", he produced such a text as his Naval History of the United States. 11. Characters, and people too, may engage i n self-mutilation activities which are the describable actions of a person "fighting" with himself. Such acts of depravity are not described in Cooper's canon. Occasionally, an artist may make use of physical "self fights" for comedic purposes. The archetypal scene in Mel Brook's Blazing Saddles in which Cleavon Little holds a finger to his own head and chokes his own neck while he struggles to "free" himself from himself offers such a treatment. Again, Cooper offers no such example. 12. See Mark Twain's "Fenimore Cooper's Literary Offenses," reprinted widely. 13. First printed in the North American Review, 154 (January, 1852) and reprinted in American Romanticism:~ Shape for Fiction, ed. Stanley Bank (New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons, 1969) 140-152. 14. Robert M. Greenberg, in "The Three-Day Chase: Multiplicity and Coherence in Moby Dick," Emerson Society Quarterly 29 (1983): 91-98, discusses chase. While his primary interest is in cetology and the symbolic dimension of Moby Dick, he notes the "torpedo like action" of chase "leaves no room for discursive

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127 analysis" (91) and discusses Melville's recourse to "a third-person" (93) narrative voice for chase presentation. This "relatively impersonal" voice, which, according to Greenberg, allows Melville a doubled perspective on the recounted events, illustrates the propensity of chase action to "shoulder aside" and disrupt even such important questions as "the destruction of [a] world" (98). Greenberg does not discuss the structure of the chase. 15. The Deerslayer; XXVII, 251. 16. Wing and Wing; X, 138.

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CHAPTER FOUR CHAINS AND LAYERS "Notwithstanding the active movements which had taken place in and around the buildings of the Lust in Rust during the night which ended with our last chapter, none but the initiated were in the smallest degree aware of their existence." The Water-Witch -(XII, 563) Movement "The day was accordingly wasted in preparations." Lionel Lincoln (XXXIV,406) Any narrative progresses with recourse to two main types of presentation: narration which tells of physically static situations and narration which relates 1 physically active occurrences. Physically static situations include authorial intrusions, descriptions of scene, conversations, background information on characters, explicatory plot summaries, historical overviews, presentations of psychological states or intellectual positions, and depictions of customs, mores, and beliefs of a character or a group of people. Physically active situations include all of the six categories of action previously described as 128

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129 well as some further types of non-static narration. These further types seem to be best described as "movement." Movement, unlike the sorts of action which dramatize events, presents non-static narration that operates in a mechanical fashion within a narrative. Movement fails to heighten the tension. Movement is the sort of motion that the narrative demands be present so that the characters can get to the action that they do. In Cooper's works, a kind of movement is found which has absolutely no link to the characters at al l however. This is the movement which Cooper makes frequent recourse to in his authorial persona and wh i ch is a repositioning by the authorial voice that moves the reader into another location within the text. Whenever Cooper needs a change in scene, his first tendency is to reassume this intrusive voice and lead the reader to a new scene. If the pen of the compiler, like that we wield, possessed the mechanical power of the stage, it would be easy to shift the scenes of this legend as rapidly and effectively as is required for its right understanding, and for the proper maintenance of its interest. T hat which cannot be done with the magical aid of machiner y, must be attempted by less ambitious, and we fear by far less efficacious means. At the same early hour of the day, and at no great distance from [a meeting spot in the forest] another morning meeting had taken place .... (The Wept of Wish-Ton-Wish; XIX, 480)

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13 0 Such narrative shifts, and they are u biq u it o u s move the reader to a new location. The y tra n s p or t th e "extra-literary" being, the "gentle reader, to w h ate v e r locale is requisite for the progression of th e ta l e. Cooper, as many critics have noted, visualizes his settings in a dramatical manner, conceptual i zing the scene in a manner analogous to scene as presented in a 2 theater and upon an actual stage. Again and again, Cooper enters the narrative just as a director enters a rehearsal of a play. Cooper gives imperious direction to his "audience," and he wields total control o v er h is "actor/characters" as well. Just as he directs the progression of the tale, so he directs the attention and the mental location of the reader with recourse to a movement through fictive space. He blocks" the readers' movement on the "stage" of narrative as surely as he "directs" the actions of the "actors." "The scene must now be shifted from [a jail in t h e lower part of New York State] to Rattletrap [a residence 3 in Manhattan]," he directs. Or again: "It has now become necessary to advance the time three entire da y s 4 and to change the scene to Key West." And again: "The time of the interview related in the close of the preceding chapter was in the early watches of the n i gh t It now becomes our duty to transport the rea d er to another that had taken place several hours later and

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131 after day had dawned on the industrious bur g hers o f 5 Manhattan." The intrusive narrative vo i ce th a t ca n "transport the reader" to a new scene offers a spec i es of movement without action. Cooper's actionless movement of reader into new scene exists because the author must relocate the focus of the tale. The next action will occur in a different location from the one Cooper has been describing. He has to get the audience to the next place so that the story can go forward. This movement exists solely to further the plot development. Another type of movement which Cooper uses and which follows logically as a result of the author's conceptualization of novelistic "scene" as closely related to "dramatic" scene is movement similar to the "blocking" movement of actors and actresses in a stage production. The first thing an actor learns for a role is often the "blocking" of the character, the location the character must be in so that the various mechanical aspects of the dramatic scene can go forward. Even before the character's lines are memorized, the blocking must be learned. If an actor is out of place at any time in the play, other actors may not be able to make their movements fit their words, may not even be physically able to enter or exit the acting space.

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1 32 In one well-developed example of Cooper's "b lo c king" technique, Mordaunt Littlepage, who is trave ling with his "middle-aged, grey-headed negro" Jaap, ( Th e Chainbearer; II, 240), finds a "vacuum in [his] purse" (240) as evening draws near. Old Jaap offers to pro vid e a means of obtaining food and lodging for the night at the "hamlet" where they find themselves. Cooper is working toward the scene in which Jaap bows his fiddle for contributions from the locals, which contributions are to commence with Mordaunt's dropping of their "one York shilling" (241) into the proffered hat. Cooper carefully "blocks" the characters throughout the entire scene at the inn. Mordaunt's first person narrative continues. I reached the inn an hour ere Jaap appeared, and was actually seated ... before he rode up, as one belonging only to himself ... and I soon found that he himself was at work on the remnants of my supper, as they retreated toward the kitchen. A traveler of my appearance was accommodated with the best parlor ... and I sat down to read .... I heard Jaap tuning his fiddle in the bar-room .... In half an hour the smiling landlady came to invite me to join the company .... On entering the bar-room, I was received with plenty of awkward bows and courtesies .... The dancing continued for more than two hours with spirit, when the time admonished the village maidens of the necessity of retiring. Seeing an indication of the approaching separation, Jaap held out his hat to me, in a respectful manner, when I magnificently dropped my shilling into it, in a way to attract attention, and passed it around ... [and] a shilling ... a quarter ... sixpences, or fourpence-half pennies, and coppers made up the balance. (241 -2 42 )

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133 Third person narratives often make even more e vid e nt the purely mechanical blocking movements of characters. In The Sea Lions, the two ships of this same name are caught in the polar ice for the winter. A temporary "house" has been constructed on the ice nearby one of the ships to serve as shelter for some of the men. The hero, Roswell Gardener, commands one ship; Daggett captains the other. Daggett reached the house .... He had succeeded in cutting a passage through the ice as far as .. his unfortunate schooner .... The whole party [of one ship] came in staggering. ( 171) Roswell was on board his own schooner . when Daggett rejoined him. The crew of t h e los t vessel remained in the house ... returning [during the captains' conference] for another load [of salvage]. (172) By ... dark ... the men turned in; the [crew of the lost vessel] mostly in the house, where they occupied their old bunks ... and ... Roswell [and his crew] ... on board .. his craft. (174) Every text contains movement of this sort, as necessitated by the exigencies of mimetic fiction or by sequences both past and coming which will mandate a specific location. Characters must be "blocked" into place so their story can proceed. For their proper development, they must move to interact with societ y or nature so as to attain perspectives on their various worlds. Another type of movement which Cooper u ses, and which does not have a direct parallel with any specif i c

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134 dramatic usage, is the movement which depicts th e necessary daily activities of mimetic characters as th e y pass through believable human life. People, and th e i r fictive counterparts, must fetch water from the wel l descend and ascend stairways, enter and depart rooms, catch horses or debarking ships, answer summons, secure food, and do a thousand other human things. These many daily and habitual movements, which are carefully and minutely recorded throughout Cooper's works, merit no examination or close inspection at length. It is noteworthy that Cooper seems to evince a conscious use of differing levels of chronicling of the minutiae of life, according to his differing purposes in his narratives. For example, Cooper offers two radically different treatments of the eating of a meal. Eating is one of Cooper's favorite activities, according to evidence in the texts, and because he held the act in such high regard he focuses clearly on description of it. The difference in the presentation of the two meals reveals not just the author's penchant for gustatory activities, however; the different details illustrate a different focus. In The Pioneers the "banquet" at Judge Temple's home is limned with a view to praising the bounty of America's' natural resources. Cooper notes that t h e characters "entering the room ... were soon seated at

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135 the table" (IX, 598). Then follows a near ep i c catalogue of: turkey, squirrels, fish, venison, b ear, mutton, "every species of vegetables," cakes, "sweet meats," pie, brandy, rum, gin, wine, cider, beer, an d "flip" (599). How the characters eat is unremarkable. Cooper writes,"the guests ... commenced eating" (599 ) However, in Home as Found when the Effinghams sit t o the table to commence their "dinner", Cooper focuses on the actions and not the menu. This work is one of his social commentary narratives; he wants the reader to see the manners of the Americans. Aristabulus is a figure of derision here; his actions are held up for criticism. Aristabulus "sat down," "saw candles lighted," and "used his knife as a coal-heaver uses his shovel." Cooper relates that "the service was made in the French manner;" every dish was then removed, carved by the domestics, and handed in turn to each guest. But Aristabulus did not wait to be served; he began to "take care of himself .... One or two slices were obtained in the usual manner, and then. he began to make accessions, right and left, as opportunity offered." In this manner Aristabulus "contrived to make his own plate a sample epitome of the first course" (II, 12). Cooper quickly lists seven comestibles, and proceeds to describe the character's further movements at length, including his plate's removal from before him by the

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136 server before Aristabulus has had the opportunity to taste the first bite. He has been too busy "offering" his glass for wine, "swallowing" the "beverage," and finishing his glass "at a draught" (13) to begin to eat. The numerous movements are described here to offer a satire on the man. Movements in Cooper's works may also be offered to illuminate psychological states of characters. Cooper is well aware that people sometimes engage in what appears to be gratuitous movement because their minds dictate activity of some sort for their bodies. As early as in The~ Cooper clearly states: "There was a restlessness in his movements that proceeded from the workings of the foul spirit within him" (X, 509). Restless movement by characters seems always to illuminate the mental state. Lionel Lincoln, never particularly known for his emotional stability, re ceives some discomfiting news and is then left alone in an apartment, the floor of which is decorated with "salient lions" (Lionel Lincoln; III, 223). For several minutes the young man trampled on the "salient lions" with a rapidity that seemed to emulate their own mimic speed, as he paced to and fro across the narrow apartment, his eye glancing vacantly ... heedlessly .... This mental abstraction was, however, shortly dissipated by the appearance of [a female]. (226 ) Cooper presents Lionel's pacing to illustrate his "mental abstraction." That Cooper places Lionel atop

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137 "salient" lions merely intensifies the impor t o f t h e symbolic movement. In this one very sma ll int e rlud e Cooper reveals his knowledge of the symbol i c d im ens ion which an activity may have within a narrat iv e. In nearly every narrative Cooper penned, characters engage in movement to vivify their mental perturbat i o n s. Prisoners pace, longing for freedom. Comrades pace awaiting meetings. Mariners pace, hoping for breezes. Disquisitors pace, preparing rebuttal. Lovers pace, attending reunion. In short, Cooper's characters m o v e about in nervous manners in precisely the way real people do. If nothing else, their actions add tension to their narratives. Nervous pacing is a movement which leads to no further activity usually. There are many movements in Cooper's fictions besides pacing that take their actors "nowhere at all." A large group of these actions is n o t revelatory of psychological states. People in Cooper's fictions have things to do which are simply basic functions; they have to do the "housekeeping" chores of life. "Those who habitually tend to such matters [ as meal preparation] toil on mechanicall y (T h e Deersla y e r; VIII, 67). Preparing a meal, serving a mea l, eating a meal, and cleaning up after a meal are movements tha t lead nowhere, but they are movements without wh i ch l i f e would end. Many of Cooper's characters "to il on

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138 mechanically" in commonplace activities to s u stain th e ir lives, busy with the "hundred preparations that render the work of a ship as ceaseless a round of activity as that of a house" (Afloat and Ashore; IV 260). These types of movement fail to further the plot generate excitement, or even to illuminate character. They are self-contained. However, some of Cooper's movements do lead into other, more rewarding, activities. Mordaunt Littlepage, the hero of The Chainbearer, pours out his love to Ursula one afternoon. She tells him that her faith has been plighted to another and that her affections are with her faith. Emotionally distraught, Mordaunt rushes from her presence and plunges into the forest. As he relates the action, For the first half hour after I left Ursula Malbone's hut, I was literally unconscious of whither I was going, or of what I was about. I can recollect nothing but having passed quite near to the Onondaga ... whom I avoided by a species of instinct rather than with any design. In fact, fatigue first brought me fairly to my senses. I had wandered miles and miles, plunging deeper and deeper into the wilds of the forest, and this without any aim, or any knowledge of even the direction in which I was going. Night soon came ... I had wearied myself .... I threw myself on the fallen tree, where weariness caused me to fall into a troubled sleep. (XVI, 339-340 ) The passage seems ostensibly to be a simple response on the hero's part to an unfavorable reply to his suit. The movement seems to be self-limiting. However the

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139 hand of the director lurks behind this caref ully blo c k e d movement of actor into scene. Mordaunt is mo v ed wit h sure direction to a place which he must occupy so t h a t the unfolding of the events of the plot may proceed w i t h credibility. When Mordaunt awakens, he first finds himself being guarded by Susquesus, "the Onondaga." Susquesus is gazing pensively at "some object that lay at his feet" (340). Mordaunt approaches and sees that the Indian is standing over "a human skeleton!" But it is not just any old "skeleton!" in the woods; it is the remains of Traverse, the surveyor who was killed by enemy Indians a generation ago when Mordaunt's father, Corny Littlepage, first came to the land to carve out a home for the Littlepage generations. Only very recently has the action of weather uncovered the bones. Mordaunt, suddenly reminded of ancestral heroism and property ownership, thrills at the evidence of history: "I have heard something of this!" he breathes. Further, as Cooper develops the plot, Susquesus too heard something in the night as he stood guarding the slumbering Mordaunt. The resident Indian had never before heard the noise, but he is certain it was the sound of a "saw" talking loudly through the still night air. He is positive he heard a mill. Mordaunt finds the presence of a mill "still more startling than the discovery of

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140 the skeleton" (341). Drawing forth a map from hi s pocket, Mordaunt can find only the notation for a proposed site and no evidence of a grant having been bestowed. Apprised of the presence of the mill and fortified with the remembrance of ancestral daring, Mordaunt determines to hunt out the squatters on his land. As he himself mentions, "a little reflection might have told me that [the mill's] occupants would not be delighted by a sudden visit from the ... owners," but he is hungry and his own provender is "long miles away". So, very carefully placed by his author/director in the precise location "miles and miles in the wilds of the forest" where a "skeleton!" and a sound in the night can give him the determination and the direction, Mordaunt can naturally move into hunt action. His "unconscious plunging without any aim or direction" on his part, at least, leads him directly into the hunt which will catapult him into "danger" (343), a "meal" (XVII, 347), a "trial" (355), imprisonment (XVIII), fights and a final happy marriage to his dear Ursula (passim). Mordaunt's movement, thus, chains into subsequent movements and acts that structure the narrative. His movement here is quite the opposite of "unconscious", at least, as far as the author is concerned. It is from this little movement that Cooper forges the chain of the remainder of the tale.

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141 Chain: A Series of Links Connected or Fitted into One Another for Various Purposes "Always bess go home, when hunt up." The Oak Openings (XIX, 302) When Cooper presents serial movements or acts, each one described as fully completed and all of which occur one after the other, he is structuring the events of the narrative in a manner which may be called "chaining." Movement may chain to all of the six main action types as the following chart illustrates. Movement Chains to Action Walking Journey The Oak Openings Chapter IV, p. 62 Walking Quest The Pioneers Chapter XLI, p. 779 Running Search The Chainbearer Chapter xv, p. 339 Climbing Stalk The Pathfinder Chapter I, p. 296 Walking Fight Sa tans toe Chapter II, p. 3 5 Walking Chase The J2_y Chapter XXVIII, p. 619 In The Oak Openings Ben and Gershom, having alread y decided to quit the neighborhood where Ben's cabin is located, work "several hours" (61) to close up the hom e

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142 and load the canoes. "At length everything was remo v e d and stowed in its proper place and Gershom expected an announcement on the part of Ben of h is readiness to embark. But there still remained one d uty to perform" (62). Ben wishes to "go and bring in" t h e carcass of a deer he had shot the previous day. The two men and a dog begin to walk the "three miles" and are nearly to the place when they discover an Indian, sho t through the head and scalped, carefully posed in a seated position beneath a tree. "After examining t h e body ... the men proceeded, deeply impressed wit h the necessity ... of their speedy removal" (64) from t h at region. They divide the deer carcass, return at once t o the canoe, laboring "with much earnest n ess" (65), and precipitously leave the shore. Although it is too late in the day to begin a journey, the little "duty" of going to "bring in .. the carcass" ( 62) leads to "the necessity of speedy removal" that impels the men into immediate journey action despite the hour. In The Pioneers Mr. and Mrs. Effingham ( Oliver Edwards and Elizabeth Temple) are at home on a beautif ul October morning. Then Oliver enters "the hall where Elizabeth was issuing her usual orders for t h e day, a nd [requests] her to join him in a short excurs i o n to t h e lakeside" (779). The "object of the walk" ( 7 80) i s t he grave of Major Effingham. When they arrive at t he e nd

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1 43 of their walk" (781), they find Natty "stretched o ut on the earth before a head-stone of white marble." The characters converse in the graveyard. After Natt y voices his "decisive appeal," that his soul "craves" to be again in "the wilderness," he parts from them. "Once or twice he assayed to speak, but a rising in his throat" (784) prevents it. He calls his dogs and enters the forest with "rapid movements ... far toward the setting sun." The "short excursion" links into the opening action of Natty's quest for death. Characteristically, words fail the Cooperian quester, but Natty's subsequent narrative (in chronological order of his life) develops the question motivation that underlies the apparently simple journey action wh ic h closes The Pioneers. In The Chainbearer Mordaunt runs, rushing and plunging through "the wilds of the forest" (339) after Ursula has gently but firmly declined his marriage proposal. He wearies himself, eventually falling asleep on a "fallen tree" (340). In the morning he and Susquesus, who has guarded him, find Traverse's skeleton. The Indian tells Mordaunt that he has heard the "saw" (342) of a mill. The first-person narrator says, "'Since you think there is a mill ... I will go and search for it, if you will bear me company.'" Susquesus has a "sort of instinct" that enables him "to

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144 find" the river, and the two men turn "up strea m to follow the water. Rounding a "bend in the river'' ( 343 ) they finally sight "the expected sawmill." The narrator's running motion chains to his hunt or search action, which is the immediately subsequent act delineated after the running motion of the night before. In The Pathfinder Margaret and Cap, accompanied by the treacherous Indian guide Arrowhead and his wife, gaze on "an ocean of leaves ... of the American forest'' (297) through a "window," or opening caused by a recent storm that threw down numerous trees. The narrative opens with the actors having "managed to ascend a pile of trees, that had been uptorn by a tempest, to catch a view of the objects that surrounded them" (296). The trees have been "piled ... in such a manner as had not only enabled the two males of the party to ascend to an elevation of some thirty feet above the level of the earth, but, with a little care and encouragement, to induce their more timid companions to accompany them." Margaret is moved by the "sublimity that the scene excited" (297), and it is she who sights "a smoke curling over the tops of the trees" (298). Having interrupted their "long journey" through the wilderness with a climb up a pile of jumbled tree trunks so as to view the scene, they sight the smoke. They determine to move quietly and cautiously toward the

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145 "pale-face fire." As they stalk their unknown neighbors, Arrowhead's "footsteps gradually became lighter, his eye more vigilant, and his person .. more carefully concealed" (301). When these people around the fire are seen to be white, Margaret moves forward to the group. The climbing movement leads directly into a stalk. In Satanstoe Corny is recently arrived in New York City and wishes to go "sight-seeing'' (35). He is fourteen years old. In the company of Pompey, a slave, he proceeds afoot "to see the principal sights'' (37), including the procession of "the Patroon of Albany" (39). Corny joins the "spectators assembled along the road" (40), which crowd includes the "winning" (41) Anneke and a nameless "butcher's boy" who knocks an apple out of her hand and causes her to cry. Corny gives "the fellow a dig in the ribs," and they move to an orchard to fight. The narrator receives "a facer or two" (42) but quickly wins the scuffle. Corny's "walking" movement to "sight-see" chains directly to the fight action that sends him off "to college with a reputation . of a regular pugilist. 11 In The Harvey Birch, disguised as a minister, and Henry Wharton, disguised as the slave Caesar, move in overt departure and unsuspected escape from Henry's guarded room. Caesar, taking the place of his master,

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146 stays behind. The two whites ride down t h e ro a d, a nd Cooper shifts his focus to the American so l diers w h o ar e guarding "Henry." Mason, the lieutenant, wa t c h es th e departing "minister" and "African" until the sentine l 's call summons him. The two Americans stand outside the room, looking at their "prisoner." Mason, observing "Henry" shaking "all over, like a man in an ague" ( 6 1 9 ), believes the "minister" has frightened him with his "farrago about flames and brimstone" (620). Mason decides to succor the prisoner, to "cheer him with a little rational conversation." Walking toward the shaking man, Mason sees through the disguise, and Caesar blurts out the news that the "minister" was actually Harvey Birch. "'Harvey Birch!'" shouts Mason, "'To arms! To arms! . Mount! mo rnt to arms! to horse! '" The soldiers all rush "tumultuously to horse" and begin the chase. Mason's walking movement to "cheer" h is frightened prisoner chains directly into chase action. No novel chains together throughout its entirety, for events are always broken up by dialogue, authorial interjections, descriptions of scene or object, relocations into new setting, or historical o r biographical summary. But, when discrete events whic h "close" are linked together serially without interruptions, Cooper's narratives offer action whic h chains

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14 7 Any movement may chain to other movement or to a n y one of the six main action types. Because exam in at i o n of describable acts alone does not allow a clear distinction to be drawn between journey action and quest action, the remainder of this discussion that focuses on action will not differentiate between simple journey action and journey action of the quest. Quest is identifiable with recourse to psychological states; quest action is identical with journey action. As t hi s examination is of describable actions, and for simplicity's sake, all travel from one place to another, regardless of motive, will be discussed as "journey action." The journeyer's motives do not alter the action. The act itself is here the focus. Just as movement chains to action, so does action chain to action. The following chart, which treats primarily action in The Deerslayer, cites examples of the five actions chaining into all the other describable actions. The text, while it is noteworthy for its 6 action sequences, is a typical one. Other works contain as many actions or more. A close examination of practically any of Cooper's successful romances would offer, as does The Deerslayer, at least a score of different chains.

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148 Chart of Chaining Actions Action #1 Chains to Action #2 in The Deerslayer Journey Journey Ch. VI, p. 54 Fight Ch. VII, p. 6 1 Chase Ch. IX, p. 78 Hunt Ch. II, p. 14 Stalk Ch. XVI, p. 146 Search Hunt Ch. VI, p. 52 Stalk Ch. VI, p. 53 Journey Ch. II, p. 15 Chase Ch. XXVII, p. 255 Fight Ch. XXX, p. 279 Stalk Stalk Ch. XVI, p. 149 Journey Ch. XIX, p. 175 Fight Ch. VII, p. 58 Chase Ch. III, p. 27 Hunt Ch. xv, p. 139 Fight Fight Ch. XXX, p. 278 Journey Ch. XVI, p. 152 Chase Ch. VI, p. 55 Hunt Ch. VII, p. 62 Stalk The Last of the -Mahicans_;_ Ch. XXV, p. 156 Chase Chase Ch. XX, p. 185 Fight Ch. VI, p. 55 Hunt Ch. III, p. 28 Stalk Ch. VII, p. 64 Journey Ch. VII, p. 65 Journey chains to all the other actions. When Natty paddles his canoe to the appointed spot, he arrests "the motion" (53) of the craft and waits, listening and looking patiently for "quite an hour" (54). The sounds of a fight of some sort come to his ears, and he "following this clew" urges "the canoe ahead ... just

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149 near enough the spot to ... take in his companion" (55), March. Natty's first journey ends; his next action is a different journey. Journey action cha in s to fight action when Natty kills his first man. The Indian and Natty walk away from one another, and Natty steps "up to his boat. Here he began to push the canoe from the shore" (61). Glancing back, Natty sees "the muzzle of [the Indian's] rifle ... opening in a line with his own body." and shoots. Natty instantaneously raises his own weapon Journey chains to chase when Natty, on the ark, spies Chingachgook "on the rock" (78) and allows his craft to drift on the current to the rendezvous. As soon as "the Sarpent" gains Natty's side, he utters "the exclamation 'Hugh!' At the next instant ... the air was filled with the yell of twenty savages, who came leaping through the branches down the bank." Judith cries, "'Pull, Deerslayer pull for life and death. . Pull, Deerslayer, for Heaven's sake! ... These wretches rush into the water like hounds following their prey!'" Journey chains to hunt when Natty and March arrive at the lake for the first time. March "knew the direction .. and led on with the confident step of a man assured of his object .... After proceeding near a mile, March stopped and began to cast about him with an inquiring look, examining the different objects wit h care" (14). Journey chains to stalk when Natty and

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150 Chingachgook, arrived at the place appointed for rendezvous with Hist, hear noises and see movement in the woods. Although the Delaware stays in hiding, Natt y takes the canoe to reconnoiter. "He did not go far from the land, the bushes affording sufficient cover, by keeping as close in as possible" (146). He observes the Indian camp for a time, then noiselessly rejoins Chingachgook. The two decide to approach the "encampment." Their "secret advance" is "greatly favored" by "the little rise in the ground'' (149). The knoll offers "a cover for those who were now stealthily approaching." They again "reconnoiter." They move "with exceeding caution ... to protect themselves against any straggler" (150) nearby. Search, stalk, fight, and chase action chain as naturally into all the action types as does journey. The only difficult chain to forge appears to be the one from fight action, which is practically always noisy activity, into stalk action, which requires proximity of opposing individuals, one party of the two who can know nothing of the nearness of the foe. The noise fights generate tends to alert the prey to the proximity of its foe. Once the prey knows the stalker is near, no proper stalk can occur. The fight-to-stalk chain is nevertheless offered in recapitulatory fashion. Natty, summarizing how he is in the Indian village, relates

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151 "'Then what should luck do ... but lead me to the v er y spot where one of the most famous conjurers of the tri b e was dressing himself [in a bear's skin] ... judgmental rap over the head stiffened [him] time, and ... I made free with his finery, and So a for a have examined every lodge in the village'" (The Last of the Mahicans; XXV, 156). Cooper does not, of course, limit his narratives to chains of only two actions. Some chains link together in more than a dozen serial movements or actions. However long the chain, this type of action is characteristically displayed in narratives which have place as their seminal ordering mechanism. Many of Cooper's tales, upon close examination, reveal a static 7 central core. This is the stage-setting upon which Cooper visualizes his characters in action. They move and act around the static central location. Usually, the static place is a house, apartment, or hut. Sometimes the place is a cave or a clearing in the wood. The central static place may actually move, as in The Prairie when the Bush wagon functions centrally. When the central place is a ship, it is habitually in motion. Even when the central place, like a wagon or a ship, is in motion, the location is viewed by the characters as their place of refuge, a spot at which they may rest from activity. A narrative containing a central place

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152 can be identified through examination of the characters actions in reference to their setting. Characters in narrative with a central static place spend m uch ti m e in repeated, brief journeys away from and back to the central place~ The first action of a narrative of place is often the presentation of a character's--or of several characters'--journey to the place. Once the central place has received its characters, the actors habitually move away from and return to that place repeatedly. Precaution, Cooper's first novel and a universal l y acknowledged failure, evinces neither structure of chained action around a place or a layered structure of action. The narrative shifts haphazardly among the numerous lovers and to nearly a score of locations, snatching the reader all over England, to parts of Wales and Spain, and into Belgium. No well-established central core location can be discerned. No ongoing central action in layers can be discussed. The working out of the tale's central purpose, the illustration "That precaution is at all times better than cure'' (XLIX, 464), especially in affairs of the affections, is so pervasive a concern that all other aspects of the work are sublimated by Cooper's repeated return to this one idea.

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153 The demands made upon the nascent author by the v er y act of attempting to successfully complete a first work in his field were, in 1820, so burdensome that Cooper cannot be said to have intentionally done anything with his structure~ As Henri Petter has noted, although he was specifically discussing authors before Fenimore Cooper, "The unfolding of ... plots [in early American 8 novels] hinges on coincidences and misunderstandings." The observation is true for Cooper's first production. Much of Precaution contains action which is recapitulant: "our travellers proceeded on their journey for B whither, during their absence, Sir --Edward's family had returned to spend a month, before they removed to town ... (XXXV, 327). All too often, true action sequences occur for no very good reason: "When, therefore, Emily met the earl so unexpectedly the second time at the rectory ... (LV, 424). Although the work has much movement, nearly all the perambulations are present merely to chive the romantically involved characters into proximity with an object of affection. All of Cooper's early successful narratives recount basically chained actions emanating from central place, but he did not usually confine his plots to one single central place for the entire duration of any tale. His habitual technique of doubling characters, places,

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---------------------------1 54 actions, and points of view is evident e v en in hi s fir s t 9 successful narrative. In The .Ey_ (1820), Cooper's use of centra l static place leaps into focus as first "Mr. Harper," then Henry Wharton, then Harvey Birch, then the British troops and the American troops all travel to and arrive at the Wharton's country home in Westchester. All the main action until Chapter XXII, when the Locusts burns to the ground, consists of brief and usually self-contained sorties from and returns to this central point. Harvey Birch's actions are given in relation, not so much to his home (whence he goes to visit his dying father and which also burns), but rather to the Wharton's home, at which location he is first seen and where he materializes as the Locusts disintegrates. Henry Wharton's acts, Peyton Dunwoodie's acts, the actions of all the important Americans, and, of course, the actions of all the residents of the home are demonstrably movements out from and back to the central, static place. Henry escapes his American captors, billeted in the Locusts; when recaptured, he is returned to the home. Peyton Dunwoodie, commanding the American soldiery, enters the home to visit his beloved Frances as soon as he arrives in the area. When the British are seen on a nearby hill, he departs to order his troops. But, even as the regulars begin to close with the

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155 Americans, Dunwoodie, receiving a note from Frances, travels back to the home to swiftly bestow "one long kiss of affection on her unresisting lips" (VI, 4 8 4 ) before he hastens back to the scene of str i fe. After the battle, he returns (493), departs (494), returns (494), departs (497), returns (497), and departs (499). A chase then occurs as Lawton and the American troops attempt to capture Harvey. As soon as the titular hero escapes, the focus of the narrative turns to Lawton's journey to the house. There too come Katy Haynes, Isabella Singleton, and a veritable host of dinner guests (XIII). Cooper offers the Birch home as the first place which doubles with the Wharton home. This doubling of place allows the author two ''stages" upon which to order his characters. Because movement occurs between the two homes, this doubling of scene fosters more logical opportunities for action, more times the narrative can be "livened up'' by some movement. Doubled place permits Cooper to offer a dual view of the titular hero, whose normal human aspect is best seen at his own home when he displays love for Johnny Birch, his father. The doubling of place seems to be central to Cooper's fictive sphere. When the Birch home burns in Chapter XIV, Cooper introduces the ''Hotel Flanagan" in Chapter XVI. To this "vacant building'' (540) come

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156 Captain Lawton and Dr. Sitgreaves to drink the whiske y "sent from the Locusts" (541). To the hotel has come Dunwoodie; thence come the Skinners and a captive Harvey Birch. The Skinners depart under Lawton's command (XVIII, 551); soldiers depart and return ( 55 3). "Betty Flanagan," actually the disguised Harvey Birch, departs (553). Dunwoodie, unable to sleep, takes a moonlit walk (XIX, 555), and chats with Birch in an orchard. Dunwoodie returns to the hotel (556), and messengers arrive and depart (558). A small party of men is sent to transport Henry Wharton to another location; the main body of troops departs toward the Hudson; and Dunwoodie rushes back to Frances, who is weeping in the woods (559). Various wounded Americans remain at the hotel, and travel between the two locations occurs; during one journey, Harvey is chased and lost. By the close of Chapter XX, the characters of current interest are gathered at the Wharton's home for "several days" of inactivity; the troops also "continue inactive" (XXI, 567). After much movement, numerous brief journeys, and a little battle, the Locusts burns. The whole party removes to the Hotel Flanagan (XXIII, 588) for the night. In the morning, orders arrive from Dunwoodie for dispensation of all the characters (594); with their subsequent departures from that place, it too is lost as a central spot.

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157 Chapter XXV treats the several journeys of the actors. The Whartons travel to a farmhouse on "the plains of Fishkill" (598), where Henry Wharton is being held. This location becomes a new central place from which action chains. During the journey, Frances spies a "rude structure" (598) on a mountainside into which glides a mysterious figure. As she will learn, the figure is Birch; the hut is his; and this "singular edifice" (XXX, 629) is Cooper's secondary central place for the remainder of the narrative proper. The primary central place, the farmhouse, is but a temporary shelter for the characters, all of whom by now desire to be "retired from the active scenes of the war" (XXXIII, 650). The Whartons arrive at the farmhouse; to and from this spot issue soldiers, Dunwoodie, Frances, Birch, and Harvey. Frances and "Mr. Harper" journey to the hut and meet with Harvey and Henry; all the characters depart the hut, the farmhouse, and the environs. At this point, Chapter XXXII, Cooper has destroyed all his safe places, both the two primary and the two secondary ones. Chapters XXXIII-XXXV trail off uneasily. The action occurs in half a dozen undeveloped locations, concluding with Harvey's death some thirty-three years later. The "safe home place" is, in this narrative, a location which the exigencies of war render most unstable. The only "central core locations" to be found

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158 in this text are in the middle of the "neutral g r ound 10 which no man can be said to own. Yet, even w h en th e safe place is demonstrably unsafe, Cooper persists i n placing his characters in core locations, and then doubling the locations. As soon as the main centra l place is destroyed, he offers another location and immediately doubles that spot too. The action generated by this place oriented narrative is action of brief duration. More than three score journeys may be found in The .Ey_. Even the longest journey, that of the Whartons to the farmhouse, occupies only three pages. The two battle scenes are of short duration; the several chases take only a few paragraphs each. As each action ends, it chains to the next. All the actions fan out from and return to the central places, both of which are doubled. At all places, multiple serial arrivals and departures transpire. Although it might perhaps be argued that Harvey's actions have some type of "extra-textual" unity provided by his life-long commitment to the American cause, according to the action description of the text his acts are of brief duration. They consist of journe y s, hunts, and chases to, from, and around one of the several core locations. The actions of all the other characters display even more pointedly the serial aspect of the

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159 acts. All action moves toward a core locat i on. Thi s type of action ordering tends to produce a narrati v e that alternates frequently and rapidly between bursts of action and interludes of tranquility which are most often characterized by dialogue. In other words, chained portions of tale offer either the act or the word, but usually not simultaneously. This method of ordering a narrative by the depictio n of action chaining from a static core place is Cooper's early characteristic structure. The Pioneers (1823) offers Cooper's archetypal safe central place, a home near the Glimmerglass. The archetypal home, the Temple estate, is doubled in this tale with Natty Bumppo's hut and, when it burns, first with the jail and environs and later with the cave wherein has been secretly housed Major (Fire-eater) Effingham. The narrative ac t ion opens with Elizabeth Temple's journey back to h er h ome and closes with Natty's journey toward the west. The intervening action all offers movements and actions out from and back to the safe core locations in the Templeton area. The actions also occur seasonall y ; th i s winter to fall structure seems to catch the notice of many critics, who believe the ordering intentional. T h e symbolic structure is but an early example of Cooper's increasingly sophisticated utilization of aspects of h i s

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16 0 narratives. Many, if not absolutely a ll o f hi s l a t e r works contain examples of the author's consc i o u s use of symbol. The journeys by the main characters to the c h urc h and their several journeys to, variously, the Grant home, the Bold Dragoon Tavern, and the Temple mansion compose the first sequence of chained action. Then comes the flurry of activity surrounding the Christmas turkey shoot. The following chained action segment also concerns marksmanship; in April the entire community goes out to shoot pigeons. In the summer, many brief actions are chronicled; Marmaduke Temple and his family are in apparent constant motion and Natty seems never to rest as he hunts, journeys, escapes, fights, and rescues. All the actions return the characters to their respective core locations. In the fall Oliver and Elizabeth journey to the graveyard and encounter Natty. He departs for the west and they return home. Acts throughout this tale chain together, just as they do in The E_y, causing the characters to act furiously and then rest and talk once they have returned to their central safe place, which place is always doubled. An identical structure appears, alternating between doubled central locations, with the small var i ation that one place is a moving place, in Cooper's next narrative, The Pilot (1824). The Ariel, Long Tom Coff i n's home i s

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161 the moving home place which functions as a core location. Doubling with this ship is another craft, the Alacrity. The central core location ashore, st. Ruth's Abbey, has as its western wing an autonomous portion known as "the abbey." Doubling with this dual central core location is a nearby ruin where the American sailors "hole up" as the narrative complicates, especially after the sinking of the Ariel. Several score discrete and countable actions occur before the Alacrity returns to Boston in the final chapter. All of the actions chain out from and return to one of the several doubled and redoubled core locations. Lionel Lincoln (1825) is Cooper's next narrative. It also initially presents the characteristic structure around safe home place. In this tale the Tremont Street home of the titular hero's great-aunt doubles with the quarters Lionel Lincoln rents from Seth Sage. The actions of the first twenty-four chapters chain out from and back to these locations, with suitably appropriate doubled other locations such as a warehouse and a hilltop. The cast of characters gathers in Boston in 1775, where are assembling American and British troops. A few days and some score of actions later, the Battle of Lexington is fought and, on the following day, Lionel is seriously wounded in the Battle of Bunker Hill. Seven months later, the recovered Lionel and

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162 Cecil Dynevor marry; on their wedding n i ght, Ceci l' s grandmother (the hero's great-aunt) dies and Ceci l discovers Lionel to be mysteriously missing from th e Tremont Street home. Chapter XXVI opens with what appears to be the beginning of a simple journey, as a secondary character sets out in search of Lionel. However, Cooper rapidly shifts the focus of the narrative to Cecil's search. For eight chapters, her journey is chronicled. She overcomes blocking mechanisms, being forced to detour along the way; but never is she seen deviating from her primary movement, attainment of a safe English home with her new husband. Cooper holds the focus of the action on Cecil almost unrelentingly for fifty pages. She arrives in a warehouse and departs (XXVI). She arrives at Howe's headquarters and departs with her safe conduct (XXVIII). She leaves the Tremont Street home and travels toward the wharves, "until her progress was checked .. Here she paused" (XXIX, 377) to locate a boat. She and her companions cross to the American side of the water and are captured by American troops, who transport the heroine through the woods, hiding to avoid detection by a passing enemy convoy. They climb a hill and meet a general who directs them to journey to "the general commanding this wing of the army" (384). Cecil is

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163 transported in a wagon, but her progress i s c h ec k ed w h e n an officer questions her rudely before allowing h er t o proceed. Finally, she arrives in "Roxbury" (XXX 3 86) and instantly departs for an inn at Harvard Co l lege. Ralph mysteriously arrives and conducts Cecil to the incarcerated Lionel. Lionel escapes in the company of Cecil and Ralph, and the three walk through the night until they pause atop Lionel's mother's grave (XXXI). Lionel wishes to rest here, but Cecil urges him to "tarry not!" (XXXII, 394), and the three move into t h e fields. Cecil and Lionel catch a ride in a cart "going to Dorchester Neck with bundles of hay." The cart carries the pair back through Cambridge, and they reunite with Ralph. They arrive at the bay, secure a boat, and return to Boston, finding their way back to the warehouse (XXXIII). In that place Ralph reveals himself to be Lionel's father and is killed by a mysterious stranger. In the final chapter, the characters in "melancholy procession" (XXXIV, 407) inter Ralph, sorrowfully depart the cemetery, and immediately proceed "to the Long-wharf, where a boat received them. They were rowed to the frigate .... In a few minutes the swift vessel was gliding ... to England" (409). There Cooper ends his tale of "the house of Lincoln" and its "secret history ... while it sojourned in a remote province of the British Empire" (41 0)

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164 For eight chapters, Cecil Dynevor Lincoln moves purposefully through America, but toward no reachab l e safe place, no home or central static location. Here i s action of a different sort. Here Cooper l ayers" t h e acts. Cooper's first five novels, save for the last portion of Lionel Lincoln, are products of a mind that sees action happening around place. The "safe home place" the characters occupy is the stage set of Cooper's imagination, the central point of his world. He crafts actions which liven up the set and he then returns his characters to the static core location to rest from their activity. When the core location is doubled, the actions can chain between two places, twining in patterns complimentary to the dual scenes. When the "safe home" is destroyed, the characters habitually move immediately to new core locat i ons and recommence their familiar round of alternating activit y and rest. Most human beings lead lives of this structure. We wake and sleep; we work and rest; we have adventures and we return home to relax from excitements. The rhythm of Cooper's chained action structures is li k e the pulse of human life; this ordering mechanism agrees with human thinking.

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165 Layer: A Stratum; One Thickness Laid O ver or Un d er Another "Remember you will be quite alone, and h a v e a long, long road to travel!" The Oak Openings (XIII, 203) The concluding eight chapters of Lionel Lincoln show Cecil engaged in action which does not radiate out from and return to a central, established and safe, static home location. As soon as Lionel disappears and Cooper shifts his focus to Cecil, her journey itself becomes central. The Tremont Street home is ignored, as is Lionel's boarding house. Instead, the focus of the narrative is centered upon the act itself, the overcoming of obstacles which hinder the progression of the journey. Afoot, in a boat, in a wagon, in a cart, afoot again, and in another boat, Cecil moves toward departure. This type of structure, with action itself as the central ordering mechanism of a tale, may be called "layered action" structure. Layered action differs from chained action, which transpires always in reference to core locations. Layered action is extended action which depicts characters moving through space without a focus upon a "safe home" locale. When the action of a chained narrative portion of text discontinues, the characters J

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166 come to a stop in their safe place. When the action of a layered narrative portion of text discontinues, the characters "pause" in their ongoing movement toward their goal. In chained action, the core location is a secure scene. In layered action, the scene offered is a temporary spot. Layered action does not exhibit the place-centered "departing and returning'' which is the hallmark of chained action. It is, then, easy to differentiate the two structures. Chained action exhibits arrivals at and departures from place; layered action offers characters going and coming. Chained action centers upon scene; layered action centers upon actor. When the acting character assumes the central position in a narrative, the plot unfolds without the "fits and starts" which place-centered narratives tend to offer. Place centered, or chained, structures yield serial actions which conclude each time the static core is attai~ed. Act-centered, or layered, structures yield ongoing actions which are interrupted by respites at non-home places or by briefer and more immediately compelling actions. Quest action is always layered. No matter where the quester pauses to rest and regardless of the difficulties which obtrude to block attainment of goal union, the focus of the quest narrative is always on the

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167 movement toward goal. Wherever the quester g oes a nd whatever the problems he encounters, he v iews a ll activity which does not take him nearer h i s goa l as a n interruption. The quester bears within himself t h e overriding concern to "get there." Even as he fights people, terrain, or his own fatigue, a tension within him occupies one level of his mind. He pauses only so he may go again; he takes a rest from action only when he must. Journey action yields both chained and layered narratives. Most clearly, characters who journey across water in or on the "safe home" of a vessel engage in chained action. Their situation is precisely analogous to that of characters who remain "at home" and are visited by guests or vexed with natural catastrophes. While it is true that most houses cannot "sink" and that any boat may do so, this is but a difference of inherent characteristics of the home. Any home can burn. Boats and homes may both be "lost" as core locations. Once lost, new safe places must be attained; until lost, both offer security where characters may feel "at home." On the other hand, journey action may yield layered action when there is no home readily attained. Cecil's concluding action in Lionel Lincoln illustrates this structure.

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168 Actions of briefer duration may exist as pieces which chain together serially or may function as interrupting periods of activity in layered sequences. These briefer actions are habitually fights, chases, stalks, hunts, swift journeys, and movements of all sorts. A chained sequence may be extensive. If, for example, a character "at home" wishes to take a "walk" for some reason (movement), he may hear a sound and decide to see what is making it (hunt). He may discover a foe doing some unwanted activity and decide to sneak up and surprise the interloper (stalk). He may attempt to constrain the foe (fight) and fail, being himself captured and taken to a secure location (journey, captivity narrative). Escaping, the character may be pursued (chase) before he returns to his home. In essence, this chain of action is the sequence which is Mordaunt Littlepage's story in Chapters XVI-XXX of The Chainbearer. The eight chapters concluding Lionel Lincoln, however, offer actions that structure with a different focus than do Mordaunt's. It must be observed that human beings and characters can only do one act at a time. That is the nature of the species. In this sense, of course, all activity must be serial and ordered in time. Human consciousness mandates reality comprehensible only with recourse to a beginning, a

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169 middle, and an end. Even layered structure has, then, a dimension of "seriality," a putting together of events in order. But in layered sequences the serial actions which ''interrupt" the extended action offer no closure. When the interrupting segment has closed, a state of activity--and not of stasis--is attained. The extended action is simply broken into; the central action remains operative even if the character is forced to discontinue action. Cooper habitually allows the characters who display layered action to find a place to "really" stop eventually. Questers attain goal-unity; travelers come finally home, searchers do find; both chaser and chased ultimately stop. It is in the period of active movement toward attainment of the static point that a narrative layers. Cecil's layered actions are illustrative. Once Cecil marries Lionel, she loses her American home. As a proper female, she must take as her own the goals of her husband, and he, as events illustrate, is in America only for a visit. Married to a "sojourner," Cecil is forced to undertake acts unprecedented in her life. She cannot have any proper American home, and she and Lionel cannot even leave this land until after Ralph, the current lord, is dead, the birth mystery plot revealed, and the various bodies properly placed in cemetery plots.

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1 70 Coope r had written himself i n to a cor n er by Chapter XXIII of Lionel Lincoln, and the close of t hi s ta l e contains his first attempt to structure a n arrati v e around some central ordering mechanism other than place. The logical alternative was to structure the tale aro und Cecil's search. And, as the tale shows, the alternat iv e was viable; even Cecil seems to find herself transported by the act. When Cecil begins her journey, nothing--not even the American Revolutionary War itself--can do much m ore t h a n briefly interrupt her progress. And nothi n g at al l ca n sway her from her purpose. "Oh! hesitate not a moment longer ... fly! (XXXI, 392), she implores. "Oh! dela y not a moment! Let us proceed anywhere or anyhow! I am strong and will follow to the ends of the earth, so you but lead! ( 3 9 3) she pleads. "I can n otmust not leave you . go!" (XXXIII, 401), she exhorts. She makes it clear that the act itself has become central to her. And that act itself, the search action, is clearly as affecting to the author as i t is to his character. When act is central, dialogue and character development fit naturally into form. Extended actions tend to produce narratives which progress more smoot hly, without the "fits and starts" chained sequences o f fer. After the interruptions ("blocking mechan i sms'' ) h a v e

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171 been overcome, layered actions allow a ret u r n t o th e pre-established tension that builds as the c l osure is deferred. Whereas chained action begins anew with eac h departure from core location, layered action builds upon a pre-established tension that remains as long as the action itself is incomplete. Layered action invites brief interruption by any of the less sustained action types, such as chase or fight, and this sustained action benefits from respite from immediate focus upon itself. As Cooper himself observes, during any pause, "expectation [has] time to increase, and curiosity to 11 augment itself." When a character carries the layered action, he is thrust into prominence because he does that which unifies the narrative. His actions explain and give meaning to his tale. The character whose actions are the unity of the narrative becomes a potent agent. So it is that Cecil comes to life in the closing chapters of Lionel Lincoln. Cooper seems uncomfortable with her prominence and with her liveliness; he ships her off to England forever, effectively banishing her from American shores. While he may have been uneasy with Cecil, h i s 12 first "living" heroine, he was very comfortable with a narrative structuring around act. His subsequent tale makes good use of the structure.

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17 2 In The Last of the Mahicans Cooper seems a lm os t to revel in his new freedom of action, offering paired layered action sequences to balance paired chained sequences. Until the close of Chapter XIV the characters journey toward Fort William Henry, an apparent safe place in the neutral ground of frontier America, which constitutes the first stage whence occu r the characteristic short journeys out and back. However, four brief chapters later, the fort has been reduced to "a smouldering ruin; charred rafters, fragments" (XVIII, 109). The subsequent five chapters develop the second layered action sequence which concludes at the doubled Indian villages. The action then chains around these locations until the end of the tale. In the closing paragraphs the surviving wh i tes "depart" the wilderness to be" soon buried in the vast forests" (XXXIII, 211). Natty, Chingachgook, and the remaining Indians depart too, after Uncas' funeral, when the venerable Tamenund lifts "his voice to disperse the multitude . 'Go, children . he directs. A 13 summary of the actions reveals the structure: The Last of the Mahicans I-XIV Layered toward Ft. Henry XV-XVII Chained at forts Action Ordering Mechanisms by Chapter XVIII-XXII Layered toward captives XXIII-XXXIII Chained at villages

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173 The layered sequences share notable paral l e l s. Th e y both treat extended journey movement; in Chapters IX I V the movement is journey proper, but Chapters XV I I IXXII chronicle chase and stalk action. Both layered sequences vivify "the hardy colonist ... who learned to overcome every difficulty" of the hostile environment of early America (I, 5). Both sequences begin at mean residences; the first sequence in a log cabin and the second in the ruined fort. Both sequences develop via dual journeys by different characters, which journeys join before the action sequence i s closed. In the first sequence, Duncan, David and the females journey; Natty, Chingachgook, and Uncas, on a different path, journey. The two groups meet, ally, and continue their travels. In the second sequence, Natty and his companions follow the trail of the captives. David follows and, joining the Huron party, travels with the Indian party. David and Natty meet, ally, and continue their movement into the Indian village. Both of the layered sequences contain numerous interruptions, prompted both by the difficulties of the terrain and, more importantly, by altercations with the enemy that mandate evasive maneuvers. In the first sequence, the travelers move evasively up a mountain; in the second, the travelers move evasively along the eastern shore of the lake and not along "the western shore whither t h eir

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174 errand led them" (XX, 127). Both sequences contain a t least one description of a fight, during which occurs at least one killing. Both sequences move from l and onto water, back to land, again to water, and then close on land. In both extended sequences, the characters pause for rest, first with an extended hiatus for food and sleep and then with brief respites for hurried refreshment. During both extended hiatuses, the characters are attacked. The first sequence generates describable action in six of the fourteen chapters, I-III and XII-XIV. The journey to Ft. Henry is interrupted by three other journeys: first, the undeveloped one which gives Natty, Chingachgook, and Uncas placement in the woods; second, the journey to the "harboring" cave on the island; and third, the captivity narrative which moves the players away from the fort. Each of these three shorter journeys is interrupted by several various actions of yet shorter duration: the first, by a stalk-chase-fight chain; the second, by the various movements necessitated by the killing of the colt, a "consultation''(28), and a momentary pause as Natty gathers provisions from the shore; the third, by a consultation (56), a "rest" (59), and the fight (66-68) which results in the end of that journey. The extended journey toward Fort William Henry provides the main thrust of action throughout the first

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175 eighty-seven pages, and the various briefer act i ons provide interruptions, most of which offer interludes of heightened activity. The several safe places where the travelers pause generate the expected serial arrivals and departures which characterize narrative of place. These little "chains of action" function to interrupt the larger journey action; they are the pieces of text which are the layers, the simultaneously occurring "actions within the action." Layered actions may pile up several strata deep. A journeying character may need to eat and rest. To rest, he may have to do work action to construct a shelter (movement). As he moves the brush, he may disturb a deer which he pursues (chase) and kills (fight). His work movement, interrupted by chase and fight action, may recommence. In the morning, his journey action, interrupted by his inactivity, may recommence. Thus, as the character is resting, he is never actually stopping his journeying. His journey is simply not producing describable action for a time. Three temporary places yield interrupting chained action in the layered sequence of journey action toward Fort William Henry. First, the "little glen" (IV, 20), where Natty and Chingachgook linger, offers Uncas' arrival, the buck's arrival, the arrival of the Heyward party, the departure of Magua, the departures of all the

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176 men, the return of Heyward, the return of Natty's part y and the departure of all six characters. The next safe place, the island-cave complex, describes more than a score discrete arrivals and departures. The third safe place, the "level top" of "one of those steep, pyramidical hills" (XI, 59), is the setting for at least fifteen various arrivals and departures. But these places function merely as temporary havens; the action at these safe spots only briefly interrupts the main journey action. Fort William Henry is, for three chapters, a safe core location, and the chapters set at the fort offer constant arrivals and departures. Doubled with the French encampment, Ft. Henry permits the characters to "draw to," "rush," "toil," "dance," "take leave,'' and be "received" as they are described "approaching," "walking," "advancing," "arriving," "descending," "moving," and ''pacing." By just the end of Chapter xv, the actors have met, parted, left, accompanied, followed, advanced, arrived, proceeded, and returned. Despite the fact that Chapter XVI treats an extended conversation, it includes five arrivals and eight departures. Chapter XVII, which leads up to the destructive battle, contains more than thirty-five arrivals at place or departures from place.

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17 7 Chapters XVIII XXII develop the j our n e y by N a tt y and his companions to the Indian vil l age. A ga in th e layered action sequence is repeatedly interrupted by actions of briefer duration which block the progress o f the extended journey. This sequence begins with a slow movement into the ruins of the fort and the painful working out of the trail which must be followed to locate the captive females. The trailing characters pause repeatedly to "read" the signs (XVIII), rest one night in the ruins, fight, and sleep (XIX). They leave to escape Indian foes, find themselves the prey in a chase which is "entirely a trial of speed" (XX, 125), engage in a long-distance fight over the water, and take evasive maneuvers. Finally, that night, Natty announces that he and the Indians are "at last in readiness to proceed" (128). They press forward throughout Chapter XXI, halting to rest and to read the trail and to confer, and eventually discover an abandoned resting place of Magua and the captive females. Despite Magua's efforts to mislead pursuers, the protagonists discover the proper trail. Shortly, the environs of the Huron encampment are reached, David is discovered during the stalking movement toward the village, and, in Chapter XXIII, David and Heyward enter the Indian lodge. T h e closing ten chapters, again unified w i t h recourse to doubled static core location, conta i n t h e m an y

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178 indicative arrivals and departures which character iz e narrative of place. When, in the last paragraph of the tale Tamenund disperses the remaining characters, Natty and Chingachgook presumably resume their journey which Cooper introduced, but failed to develop, in Chapter III, the journey which had placed these men in the proper spot in the American forest at the opportune time to first meet with Duncan, Magua, and the Munro sisters. Natty's words of comfort to Chingachgook, the grieving father, recall the Indian to the present and indicate the return to the interrupted journey movement: "God has so placed us as to journey in the same path. Sagamore, you are not alone" (XXXIII, 212). In The Last of the Mahicans, as was the case in Cecil's portion of Lionel Lincoln, a journey which is not a return to an established and known safe home place provides the structure for the tale. The~, The Pioneers, and The Pilot present narratives which begin and end in known safe home locations. Cooper's next tale, The Prairie (1827), again treats Natty, this time giving his death. It is Natty's quest to attain union with his god which offers the unifying mechanism in the work. It almost seems Cooper himself perceived the structure to underlie the tale. In the fourth paragraph, Cooper, speaking of the emigrant

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179 colonists to the "immense and but half-tenented territories of the United states" (I, 214), states : "Thousands ... were to be seen leading long files of descendants ... deeper into the land in quest of that which might be termed, without the aid of poetry, their natural and more congenial atmosphere" (215). The leader of the Bush train pauses "in quest of signs which might indicate" a resting place (218). Instead of sighting a campground, the party distinguishes a colossal figure of a man, backlit by the "the flood of fiery light" (218) from the descending sun. This is Natty, an aged man. After he leads the Bush entourage to a resting place, Natty speaks of his long life with recourse to a metaphor of journey I was born on the sea-shore, though most of my life has been passed in the woods .... It is a weary path ... and much have I seen, and something have I suffered, in journeying over it . . Seventy-and-five years have I been upon the road. (II, 223) For the next thirty-two chapters Natty, the whites, and the Indians move toward and away from the various rude safe places which the prairie offers. Basically, the twinned safe locations are wherever the Bush encampment stops, most notably the citadel atop "the eminence . of the prairie, a single naked and ragged rock" (VIII, 260), and the Pawnee village where Natty dies. However, other even less secure locations include

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180 "the rise of one of the undulations" (II, 225 ) "a little swale that lay along the borders of a li ttle r un (IX, 267), a "small thicket of cotton-wood and vines" (XVVII, 315), and a "rise in the ground" (XXIII, 356 ) These unremarkable places give rise to the characteristic chained arriving and departing action. The closing four chapters offer a layered sequence as Natty journeys to the Pawnee village, eventually there to die. Both the many chained and the layered action portions of the tale function effectively; both, now that Cooper has a sure feel for the two techniques, offer worthwhile methods of presentation. Natty's journey toward union with God, a journey which cannot really be said to be a return to any known safe home place, lies beneath the basically place oriented action sequences that offer chained actions. It was fourteen years before Cooper was to return to Natty's tale, in The Pathfinder (1840). During that interval, Cooper "sojourned" in Europe for seven years and wrote six novels and many non-fiction works. In the fictions of this period of his life and in all his later works, Cooper uses both chained and layered action sequences as ordering mechanisms. The European tales, both those of Europe (The Bravo, The Heidenmauer, The Headsman,) and those penned in Europe (The Red Rover, The Wept of Wish-Ton-Wish, The waterWitch), offer

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181 effective actions of both types. At times t h e ac ti o n chains around core locations; at other ti m es, t h e act i o n layers. While Cooper's usual tendency is to establish a safe home place, he does not seem to evince a greater or lesser use of chained actions at place in the European works than he does in his other fictions. The action of a story, it seems, is not altered by a "sea change." An Italian boat or a Swiss village offers as effective a safe place as does an American freighter or a New York town. The Bavarian Odo von Rittenstein (The Heidenmauer) is as effectively rootless and wandering as is any dispossessed American Indian. Old Antonio Vecchio (The Bravo) is as much "at home" in his Venetian gondola as is Long Tom Coffin in the Ariel. The Heathcote home and the Abbey of Limburg are precisely as safe as are the Wharton home and the cabin of Bumppoall four burn to ashes. Lake Leman is as pellucid, and as unpredictable, as Lake Ontario. While European villains are not red, they are bad enough to fight. While some European females are Catholic, they are still lovely and lovable. As long as people remain human, their actions are basically the same. Paint the backdrop with a vista of the Hudson or a facade of Saint Mark's; let the blushing female say "yes," or "si," or

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182 "oui", or "ja." It does not ultimately matter "w h ere" or "who" acts; what matters is that the acts are chronicled. When Cooper takes up Natty's tale again, he gives his hero a narrative with a chained action structure that is place oriented. The Pathfinder, as he is called, labors under his most repressive burden here; he is "in love." The unfortunate result of this attempt to make Natty a romantic hero forces him into a role that suits his character not at all. "When a man is thoroughly in love, he is quite apt to be fit for very little else but to urge his suit," as Cooper observes elsewhere (The Oak Openings; XV, 242). Throughout nearly all of the text, Natty is to be found hovering at Mabel's elbow. Even when not gazing at her, Natty may not act independently; as a scout under the orders of the American forces, all Natty's acts are "other-directed." Unlike the self-directed hunter and trapper of The Pioneers and The Prairie and unlike the self-activating mature Hawkeye of The Last of the Mahicans, Pathfinder Natty acts responsively, either at the dictates of military commands or at the mercy of emotional importunities. Only after Mabel and Jasper marry is Natty free to "go his way" (XXIII, 544). After Natty bids a final adieu to the married Mabel, he may

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183 "go [his) way in peace, and like a man ... with . a tread whose vigor no sorrow could enfee bl e" ( 5 4 4-5 4 5 ) Much has been written about Natty's at y p i ca l behavior in this tale; most of the criticism of f ers an unsatisfactory response. Readers agree that the ta l e does have "real" problems beyond Mabel's unfort u nate mis-nomenclature. One of the real problems is that Natty is unable to act properly anywhere in the book. Because he is literally never free to act in a proper mode, what he does undercuts what he is. Only when Natty goes his way "like a man," freed of "urg i ngs," i s he himself. His essence is "going," and not "urging"; but the Pathfinder is "fit for very little else" but urging. Natty is not Natty when he must try to function as a romantic lead. As he himself states, "I rather pride myself in finding my way where there is no path than in finding it where there is" (I, 302). The lover's path is well marked in the Cooper canon, t h at "primrose path" to wife, home, children, and stasis. But Natty lives when he is on journeys with no firm path, no guideposts, no trail with strictur i ng orders or importunities. It is on journeys where he can find hi s "own way," such as the one seen in The Deerslayer, where the Leatherstocking can act representat i vel y and be free to live.

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1 184 The "war-path" is no "primrose path." In The Deerslayer (1841), the young Natty is in motion, from his first entrance, "searching for [the] path" ( I, 7 ) to his last appearance when he exits "the region of [his] First War-Path. to rush into new adventures, as stirring and remarkable as those" which define his youth (XXXII, 292). Although the body of the narrative chronicles chained actions that occur around myriad temporary core locations, Natty's presence in the region is occasioned because of a journey. He pauses because complications interrupt his progress; he departs as soon as the obstacles have all been overcome. Natty's two narratives of chained action in the Otsego region delineate two times when his life journey is "interrupted". In The Deerslayer his pause is brief; in The Pioneers his pause is more lengthy. Both works develop the underlying temporary nature of his association with the archetypal Cooperian "safe home place." But, as he conceptualizes his own life, Natty's essence is the journey toward the unfamiliar: "Seventy and-five years have I been ... journeying." His chained action sequences of place, which do form arresting matter from which to spin a romantic tale, are not representative of Natty's proper action mode. When journeying, and not when journeying to a known destination, Natty lives.

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r--1 I I 185 Yet, at the central static core of it a ll can b e discerned Natty's own safe home, and the ho m e place which he is always within is America itself. T he lan d all of it, from the Atlantic sea-shore to the deepest western interior, is home. Deep in Natty's essential core is the firm certainty that, no matter where he may journey, he is already home. This dual knowledge which he has, this "doubling" in Natty's spiritual core, is one of the main reasons he is so successful a creation. He is simultaneously in motion and still, having always already arrived at the spot he acts to attain. Again, Cooper's habitual "doubling" technique functions effectively. With characters, settings, and action types does a doubled presentation convey a believable unity, a balanced whole. Cooper's use of two action ordering sequences characterizes the remainder of the canon; both structures are repeatedly employed to present effective narrations. Cooper probably did not consciously categorize his action sequences into these two groups. Yet, given the bi-polarity which is perhaps the most recurrent phenomenon of note in his fictive realms, he would have had difficulty not creating action types which divide into a dualistic scheme. All of the six basic actions forge effectively in either action ordering approac h ;

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186 movements, of course, are omnipresent throughout al l th e tales, both within and around all action sequences. It cannot be said that either chained or layered action sequences are the more representatively "American" or the artistically "better." Both types function effectively to structure tales which depict human concerns through a fictive medium. Tales which use place oriented chained action often include destruction of the place, offering Cooper the opportunity to chronicle the persistence of the American spirit as he describes the survivors braving threatened failure and bending their efforts to restructure an existence around either a reconstructed or a newly created static core location. The core location is habitually initially presented via chained action sequences; the safety of the place is revealed to be illusory; the characters act to reestablish the desired safety; and the narrative closes in what is presented as a "really safe" safe place. Layered action sequences center upon the people and their actions. The people are seen disjuncted from any particular core location, and their actions allow Cooper the opportunity to li m n the self-reliance of the American spirit as these characters journey or quest or hunt or fight or stalk or chase their ways through their worlds. These characters overcome various blocking mechanisms as they move.

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187 Layered actions frequently generate a h e i g ht ene d tension within the narrative and e f fect iv e ly en h a n ce t h e importance of the actor. Whichever of the two structures Cooper se l ects to shape his tales, he crafts his most effective writ in g when he offers action. When authorial interjectio n, recapitulatory background, and even dialogue thrus t static segments before the reader, the story, the act, ceases to exist. But when Cooper shows nature growing and changing and when Cooper offers people act i ng and doing, the tale lives. "Actions speak louder than words," he asserts (Wyandotte; XX, 162). He might h a v e said "better" than "louder" and have been right, for "We all find relief on getting in motion" in the Cooperian universe (Jack Tier; VIII, 538). After disquisition a nd philosophizing, "It is always a great relief ... to have decided upon a course of future action" (Wyandotte ; XII, 99). When experiencing the acts, the reader understands the essence of the world because this living world is movement, motion, act, and response "Wo m en and winds are only understood when fa i rl y in m otio n ," he observes (The Water-Witch; vr, 530 ) He might ha v e added that "men and nations" are only then understood and have been right; for, in the Cooperian cosmos, in the beginning is the act, and the act is of t h e wor ld and the act is the world.

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188 When Deerslayer offers the dying Lynx a sip of water from the Glimmerglass or when Pathfinder "misses" the potato and then hits "the two--the two" sailing gulls, we know the man and the world through the acts. When Bumppo strides over a rise, backlit by the flood of fiery light, we know of that American man, "so ready at need, who wandered far and wide." And while it is most successfully Natty whose acts live, it is by no means 14 only the Leatherstocking whose acts remain: Long Tom, riding his coffin straight down; Ralph Lincoln, stretching out a spectral arm to thrice bless a union conceived in horror; Henry de Lacey, shouting down the hurricane as the Flying Dutchman rides the tempest; Harvey Birch, transmogrifying into washerwoman and divine; Captain Munson, flying through the battle, jammed around a whistling cannon ball; Anneke Mordaunt, crossing the heaving ice of the Hudson, afoot in the dark; Stephen Spike, throwing eleven mates and women, one at a time, out of the floundering yawl and hacking a living woman into pieces; the Heathcotes, clawing their way up from the dead, shouldering aside the embers of what must be Hell's own fires; and all the tracking and the hacking, the brawls and falls, the shootings and lootings, the fights and frights and flights that live in American hallways or even unto Ultima Thule--these acts are Cooper's living world.

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189 Notes 1. This basically reductive categorization of narrative structure, into a simplistic binary view of narration, is only one approach to a discussion of structure. While it is true that all dramatized fictions can be examined in this manner, it is obvious that no narrative can be studied solely in this way, save for the purposes of illustrating one small aspect of the work. 2. See, for example, R. w. B. Lewis, The American Adam (Chicago: University of Chicago Press,1955) who discusses Cooper's "Gift for seeing life dramatically" (100); H. Daniel Peck,~ World .ey Itself: The Pastoral Moment in Cooper's Fiction (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1977), who observes: "Cooper's books are organized into highly formalized scenes which are as distinctly separated from one another as scenes in a stage play (57); and John Seelye, "Some Green Thoughts on a Green Theme," TriQuarterly 23/24 (1972) 596-604, who states that Cooper "tended to frame his novelistic action in dramatic terms" (599). 3. The Ways of the Hour; XXIX, 180. 4. Jack Tier; XVI, 664. ---5. The Water-Witch; XXVII, 665. 6. Yvor Winters, In Defense of Reason (New York: William Morrow & Company'; 1938) examines Cooper's action and finds it to be "probably as great an achievement of its length as one will find in American fiction outside of Melville" (134). While Winter's focus is not on the effectiveness of the chained action, his conclusion reveals how Cooper's linking device works effectively as an ordering mechanism. George Dekker, James Fenimore Cooper: The American Scott, specifically discusses the action of this tale. He argues that The Deerslayer fails in the area of "unity of action" because the "action is ... presented often in such detail that the happenings ... take up about as much time in the telling as they would have in fact" (190). While the conclusion Dekker makes admits disagreement, his notice of the verisimilitudinous action sequence is of note

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r I 190 7. H. Daniel Peck in~ World _e.Y Itself states that Cooper crafted his pastorals in such a way as to "arr ive at a still point of the imagination, a place from whic h he will never have to leave" (72). Kay Seymour House names what is here called the "static central core" a nd the "safe home place" the "resting place'' in Cooper's Americans 206. She argues that an individual's "search" for this place is one of Cooper's "themes." 8. Henri Petter, The Early American Novel (Columbus: Ohio State University Press, 1971) 398. 9. The "doubling" found throughout American fiction has been noted and discussed by numerous critics. Cooper's habitual doubling and even redoublin g is sometimes called "pairing" or "bi-polarity" and is significant wherever it appears. 10. "Neutral ground" as named by Donald A. Ringe, in James Fenimore Cooper (New York: Twayne Publishers, 1962), or the "buffer state", as House calls it, is an area which most critics of Cooper examine at length. 11 The Oak Openings; XXII, 360. 12. With Betty Flanagan (The E_y), Remarkable Pettibone (The Pioneers), and several negresses Cooper offers early treatments of active, and interesting, women, but these females are neither the heroines nor are they central to their tales. Frances Wharton Dunwoodie (The E_y), Elizabeth Temple Effingham (The Pioneers), and Cecilia Howard Griffith (The Pilot) do act occasionally. Some of their actions are even self motivated and successful. However, such actions are atypical for these females, and the acts are very quickly completed. These actions are never any more than exploratory forays out of the female's "proper sphere," which is most surely the central static core location of the safe home place. 13. The structure of this tale has been examined repeatedly, perhaps most seminally in H. Daniel Peck's A World .ey Itself. In chapters 7 and 8 Peck discusses the "doubled" journey, which is but one of the many doublings in the text, and describes the journey to Fort William Henry as going "forward" into the future and the journey away from the fort as going "backward'' into time toward the primitive.

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191 14. See: Long Tom Coffin, Chapter XXIV, The Pilot, Ralph Lincoln, Chapter XXII, Lionel Lincoln, Henry de Lacy, Chapter XVI, The Red Rover, Harvey Birch, Chapter XVIII, XXVIII, The E_y, Captain Munson, Chapter XXXIII, The Pilot, Anneke Mordaunt, Chapter XVII, safanstoe, Stephen Spike, Chapter XV, Jack Tier, The Heathcotes, Chapter XIX, The Wept of Wish-Ton-Wish.

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CHAPTER FIVE LIONEL LINCOLN "You know, then, of the secret movements in the night?" Lionel Lincoln (VIII, 255) Fenimore Cooper wrote thirty-three extended fictions in the period from 1820 to 1850. His best known works are the Leather-stocking pentateuch, which works are the focus of numerous critical articles and books or book chapters each year. Another group of his tales, those usually labeled "social commentary" works, are also frequently studied, typically with reference to portions of his non-fiction writings. Such criticism examines Cooper's attitude toward problems in his own era. Most surveys of early American fiction touch upon one or more than one of Cooper's first written works, including The Pioneers as an example of "frontier romance," The Pilot as an example of "sea fiction," and, occasionally, The .E_y as an example of "the first" successful native romance. Many critics divide Cooper's works into groups, typically taking his personal seven year European travels as some sort of a watershed in h i s 192

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193 development, noting his increasing cr i tical d i sfa v o r during the decade of the 1830's and his increas i ng disillusionment with his homeland and the c i t i zens of the world. Some of the groupings which have been offered to categorize the Cooper canon include the fi v e 1 part division of Warrens. Walker, and the triune 1820's ("Realist-Patriot"), 1830's (''Critic and Cosmopolitan''), 1840's ("Moral Idealist'') classificat i on 2 of Arvid Shulenberger. Some criticisms illuminate Cooper's tales with psychological treatments; some approach from economic positions; some are historical; and some biographical. In short, the critical studies of Cooper are as diverse as any in the field. None of the critical works on Cooper, however, examines his writings through evaluation of action. No discussion of the canon or of a group of his tales grounds in a balanced study of that action portion of the fiction which appeals so universally to readers and upon which this author's reputation rests. While some critics review the action of a given tale, no critic hitherto has evaluated the vital centrality and the import of the action itself. Action in Cooper's tales has been discussed as part of "the plot'' and viewed as no more than the means to an end, both to the denouement of a narrative and the the evaluation of the "more important" matters in the text. Yet, the action is

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.. 194 itself central. An examination of the act yi e ld s valuable insights into the structure of an y wor k A review of the method of structuring action i llu minates each text. For example, a right appreciation of Natt y 1 s 11 act-less 11 actions in The Pathfinder expla i ns, in part, the basic problem with the work and points to one describable flaw in the tale. Similarly, a right evaluation of Natty's function in his captivity narrative, The Last of the Mahicans, and of his quest action in the last chapter of The Pioneers and in The Prairie, offers a valuable method of examination of the texts. The study of action in the works of Fenimore Cooper leads directly to the conclusion that action, the act itself, is an aspect of more importance than criticism has previously explained. The inescapable conclusion of such a study is that the action in Cooper's works does more than merely advance the plot. Action is one way the author explains the world he creates. The characters "are only understood when in motion;" the worlds are "understood 11 only when this focus on the act itself is maintained; the fictions are properly understood only when their acts are. And it is not merely Natty's world which is better understood when the actions are evaluated. All of Cooper's fictions benefit from an 11 action approach. 11 In

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.. .. 195 fact, it is Cooper's lesser known narratives wh i ch reveal the most exciting facets when examined through this method. It is the neglected, the "unknown," Cooper which most benefits from this approach. Such tales as Lionel Lincoln, the Homeward Bound/Home as Found complex, and The Oak Openings have had practically no recent noteworthy examination. Yet, such tales as these reveal unexpected dimensions and exhibit surprising sophistication when evaluated through their actions and movements. Lionel Lincoln (1825) is Cooper's fifth narrative; it is one of his early works. In all his early works, Cooper's focus is on telling a tale which will appeal to his audience and which will sell. Cooper's concern with the creation and establishment of an independent American body of literature is another of his major concerns during his early professional life. Lionel Lincoln is set in America in 1775 and treats patriotis m 3 liberation, and love. As has been shown in the previous chapter, it is Cooper's first work which offers extended layering action. When Cecil goes after her absent husband, her journeying itself becomes of centra l focus in the concluding eight chapters. It is an uneasy mixture of a tale, a Gothic American. It was Cooper's first popular failure, and it remains one of Cooper's lesser works to this day

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,I I .. ... --~ 7 196 In its basic structure, Lionel Lincoln recounts t h e events occurring during a brief American visit by two British men, Ralph (Sir Lionel Lincoln ) and his son Lionel. The elder Lincoln, whose identity is unrevealed until the penultimate chapter of the narrative, has escaped from an English insane asylum and comes to America for freedom, both to fight in the American revolution and to attain the goal of his Gothic quest, his own death. The younger Lionel, an officer in the British army, comes to America to aid in the English actions to deny political freedom to the colonies. He secures a wife and returns to England. Lionel ends his westward journey to America in the novel's opening action and journeys eastward to England in the work's closing action. This dual journey presentation is a characteristic Cooperian structure. In its geographical reverse, the author has already utilized this basic structure to good effect in The Pioneers (Eve's opening journey to Templeton; Natty's closing journey to the western frontier) and The Pilot (the opening arrival of the Ariel in England; the closing westward movement of the Alacrity). He was to use the structure of opening movement "into scene" and closing movement "out of scene" again in the The Last of the Mahicans, his next tale. The journey "into scene" and "out from scene,"

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197 which is specifically Boston and its environs i n L io n e l Lincoln, operates as a balanced action which here fra m es the events of the struggle for American independence, the unraveling of the birth-mystery plots, and the denouement of the romantic affairs. Traditionally Cooperian in many of its aspects, Lionel Lincoln is simultaneously most uncharacteristic. The romantic hero, Lionel, is genetically flawed and subject to mental breakdowns. He is not a proper American hero for this tale of national independence and he refuses to become an American or make his home in America. The heroine, Cecil, becomes the center of the action in the closing chapters, seeming to feel relief when she departs her American home. Cooper's typical treatment throughout the canon of elder secondary figures which operate as parents or parental substitutes is usually sympathetic; if such characters are not wise counselors they are, at worst, typically silly and merely misguided foggies, meaning well but failing to understand the "truth" of the affections. Yet in Lionel Lincoln, the father is a fugitive and a madman; the mother substitute, Mrs. Lechmere, is actually evil and corrupt in every sense of the word. The half-brothers, Lionel and Job, are estranged and very strange; the first has "something . diseased" ( XXI, 3 3 3) in his mind and the second is a full-blown idiot savant. The

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I 198 secondary heroine, Agnes, who represents th e a ll American female because she marries an Amer i can a nd resides in America, has a "cast in one e y e" ( I I I 227 ) an egregious flaw in Cooper's fictive world. Both her suitors are also "wrong." Polworth, a Falstaffian figure of gluttonous appetite, incinerates his own le g to provide the fuel for a meal (the leg is wooden ) ; her husband is apparently unable to provide his wife with a "safe home place" in America. The couple resides in the Lechmere home which Cecil gives to them. Boston, the central American scene where national liberty is being born, is under siege. The revered fathers and mothers of liberty starve in "blackened" (I, 219) dwellings; pestilence afflicts the people and engenders piled corpses in the streets; portions of dead patriots rain out of the thundering heavens as the British soldiers wad their artillery with suitable fragments of deceased American soldiers Little wonder, given all the extraordinarily curious tensions and compromises Lionel Lincoln contains, that Cooper's popular audience shunned the text. As Beard notes, Lionel Lincoln 4 was a failure." Cooper blamed the failure on his attempt to marry the romance with the American historical scene, "a 5 class of which none ever succeeded." But the problem with this tale may not be dismissed as easil y as Cooper J

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I I,. 199 chose to believe it could be. What is rea lly wro ng w Lionel Lincoln may be more clearly explained w h en t h e action of the story is reviewed and examined. The first twenty-five chapters of Lionel Lincoln focus upon the younger Lincoln's actions. An examination of these chapters reveals a decreasing ability on Lionel's part to act. Even at the outset, during his first journey action off the ship, he moves only at the direction of his "guide," the idiot, Job Pray. But Lionel does manage to find his way to his superior officer the following day after he has climbed Beacon-Hill to sightsee. Reporting for orders, Lionel is told to "hold himself in readiness" and to take a "respite from duty ... for two months" (VI, 241). During that time of "paralyzing" inactivity, he "visits" friends and relatives and he climbs the hill several times to "muse" ( XIV, 297) or to see "movement" (xv, 305). His paired journeys to Abigail Pray's warehouse home point graphically to his increasing disability. He actually "visits" the warehouse several times; the first and the last visits are at the direct physical intervention of Ralph. The second and third trips are the two which, when examined closely and in sequence, offer the contrast. In Chapter VII, Lionel, "induced" to visit the location because of Ralph's "secret and inexplicable influence" (254), is sufficiently familiar J

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2 00 with the route as to render the a i d "of a guid e unnecessary" (254). He knocks, enters, fi nds th e ladder, climbs up, speaks with the indispose d R a lph, descends the ladder, and returns unhesitatin gly t o Tremont Street. In Chapter XI, Lionel learns from Jo b that Ralph desires another interview at the warehouse. Although this visit occurs after the Chapter V I I vi sit and despite the fact that Lionel begins the journey in advance of Job, when they near the warehouse Job mo v es ahead. He holds open the door for Lionel. Lionel enters and stops, turning "to request [Job to] precede him, and announce his name" (281). But Job disappears and Lionel, who is "deserted by his guide," gropes "his way toward the place where he believe[s] he should find the door." Lionel is "deceived''; he cannot locate the ladder he had previously located with no difficulty. He stands "rooted to the spot" and overhears a crucial and mysterious conversation "through one of the crevices of the wall." He "lingers" and "gropes" and "looks" and "hesitates" and "observes." When he finally has the chance to do anything, it is to talk; then, he "alludes" to "the necessity of soon" (285) getting in action. "Lionel now knew not how to act," notes Cooper. Lionel's subsequent determination is "to watch the movements [of the other characters] ... and to be governed entirely by circumstances" ( 286). When his

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2 01 aged aunt departs alone to tra v erse th e s tr ee t s of Boston, he waits for a time. T h en he ta k es th e s a m e route behind her, falling "immediatel y i nto a d ee p sleep" when he arrives at her Tremont S t reet home w h ere he is a guest. The journeys up and down the nearby hil l re v eal th e same degeneration. Lionel's first journey up BeaconHill, his trip to "catch a glimpse of scener y (IV, 230), is a self-directed action. At Lionel's suggestion, he and his chance-met old friend Polworth descend the hill to see some "friends" below on the common. Some time later, Lionel finds himself "wandering" (IX, 259) about and decides to climb the hill again. Sounds lead him toward a detachment of soldiers, and he joins the troop in the skirmish at Lexington and the taking of Concord. Under the command of the officer and in company with the other British soldiers, he returns to Boston. The third time Lionel climbs a hill, he sits "on a stone" (XIV, 297); when he returns home, he falls exhausted "in his bed" ( 299). The fourth time he attains an elevation, he has been swept thence by a throng of agitated townspeople ( XV) He descends to request a reassignment to acti v e d ut y but accepts the denial of this request w i th well-bred resignation. Immediately thereafter, a s u perior o ffi ce r decides to climb the hill during the battle for B un k er

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2 02 Hill itself. Lionel accompanies him. Thi s t i m e, Lion e l cannot control his actions; he flies to th e fight ra ging below. Almost at the moment he joins the ac t ion, h e is gravely wounded; he lies unconscious in his bed for seven months. The several brief journeys up the hi ll and the actions generated subsequently to the attainment of the elevation illustrate the general degenerat i on i n Lionel's ability to act effectively. From a sightseer to a vague wanderer to a static muser he devolves, ending up "swept" or "led" to the vantage point. From journeys back down the hill to see his "friends," his descents degenerate to plunges into sleep or a seven month's long coma, Lionel's two participations in battlefield action occur well after his inability to act properly has developed. In neither battle does he act as a free agent; soldiers are at all times under the command of their superior officers as long as the battle does not turn into a rout. Even before he departs for his first battleground experience, he tells Cecil, "I volunteer t o perform no other duty than to be a witness of whate v er may occur" (VIII, 258). In that battle, when the action begins and the other soldiers start to fight, Lionel implores them to "cease their fire'' (IX, 264). I n th i s "battle," Concord is taken "without t h e least resistance" (268). News of a nearby British re v erse

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203 causes the commander to order the men into a retreat. Lionel spends the brief occupation of Concord and most of the retreat "discovering" small news, "reading" the faces of angry Americans, "obtaining" knowledge of the British actioris in the field,, "seeing" a growing disquietude in the royal soldiery, "perceiving," and "listening." When he finally is ordered to ride up to the front, he "beholds" Polworth and "contemplates" the dashing men. As the British forces move about, Lionel can "trace their route, far towards the north, by the bright red spots ... in the fields" (272). He chats with Polworth Surprised by the Americans, Lionel unexpectedly becomes a target until Ralph and Job appear. Job leads the horse to safety. Lionel abandons his beast and joins "a party of the combatants on foot, and (continues] to animate them to new exertions" (273). The remainder of the British retreat back to Boston is "intensely interesting" to Lionel; he stands "leaning against a fence" (274) for most of the recounted action. In his second and last military action, Lionel no more than attains the field of action before he pauses at the corpse of a "graceful stranger, stretched lifeless on the parched grass" (XVI, 310). Instantly, Lionel is shot. He is borne to the Tremont Street house where he lies unconscious for a full seven months before he rises from the bed.

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204 Lionel's other actions in the text are all brief chained journeys around "safe home place" locations in Boston. He goes once with Ralph and at Ralph's bidding to a Sons of Liberty meeting. Ralph guides Lionel back home at its conclusion (VI). He several times goes inside to sit "on a settee" and talk or write (VIII, 258; XIV, 292; XIV, 302; XIX, 323; XXIII, 342), or to eat (XI, 279), or to sleep (XIV, 299). His actions after Chapter XXIII are all at the direct request of Cecil or Ralph or are taken solely as a result of their needs. Even before Chapter XXIII, when he is wounded, Lionel has ceased to act for himself. But after he is hurt, his actions are increasingly not his own. After his disappearance with Ralph from Mrs. Lechrnere's deathbed scene, Lionel drops out of Lionel Lincoln completely for five chapters. The action is, perforce, transferred to the other characters. Up until Lionel's mysterious disappearance, Cecil has been a model of female propriety, circumspect and static. She appears only within the Tremont Street home or on excursions with Lionel about the city. She talks and offers "aid" to her ailing grandmother (IV). She talks and exits the parlor (VIII). She nurses Lionel, blushes and weeps when he says he loves her, and she exits his sickroom (XVIII). She attends church (XIX)

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205 and talks with her grandmother (XX). She allows Lionel to "lead her" (XX, 329) into another room in the house, and she "leans on" his arm as she moves down the aisle to be married (XXII). She "passively" allows her new husband to seat her "on the settee" (XXIII, 343) and prays when her grandmother dies. But when Lionel disappears from the house and the narrative, Cecil acts. Searching for her absent husband, Cecil "hurries," "bursts," and "rushes" through the house. She moves "quick as thought" downstairs (XXIV, 349). Although she does faint before she can get out of the door, by the next day she has recoverd enough to get through her grandmother's funeral with no outward show of grief. She has gotten command of her emotions and takes control of the action. When she next appears, Cecil moves "with a firm and proud step" so assured that overworked and jejune British sentinels on duty are "amazed" to simply observe her passage (XXVIII, 376). She disperses an entire mob of potential murderers with a handful of words and her purposeful walk. On her journey to Lionel, Cecil's "light and hurried footsteps" indicate "the course. unhesitatingly" (XXIX, 377). "Full of the importance of her errand" (382), Cecil hides when she must, explains when she is challenged, and lingers only "a single moment" before she pushes onward with "light and elastic

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206 steps" (384). Once she finds Lionel, Cecil does not reassume her properly passive feminine role. It is he who stands "passive under the united efforts of his bride and her aged assistant," Ralph, to dress him in a disguise (XXXI, 392). Whenever Lionel pauses, Cecil urges movement. It is he who plants his "foot firmly on the frozen earth" and declares, "' I will go no further"' (XXXI, 394). It is she who urges, "'Tarry not!'" and she who repeatedly charges him to "'fly!'" When sounds of "the pursuers" (397) disturb the "accursed history" (396) Ralph is relating, Lionel remains "utterly indifferent whither he proceed[sj" until Cecil's cry for him to "'Fly!'" awakens him "from the dull forgetfulness into which his faculties had fallen" (397). Back in Boston, Ralph directs them to the warehouse. Lionel "commune[s] momentarily with his thoughts (XXXIII, 401). learn all and ... waver[s] in his purpose" Cecil urges him to "'go, listen, and In the warehouse, Ralph continues to relate "the tale" while Lionel sits. Cecil comforts the sick and careworn. When Lionel does move, it is to accost Ralph, and, at Cecil's shriek that Ralph is Lionel's father, her husband staggers back and stands motionless. Lionel does nothing but "look" as a stranger bursts through the door, grapples with Ralph in a violent struggle, begs for assistance as Ralph raves,

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207 and stabs Ralph three times. Lionel "still look[s] upon the savage fray with a vacant eye" (405). His father bleeds to death before him. After the newlyweds return to England, Cecil spends her life "moulding and bending the feverish temperament of her husband" (XXXIV, 410). Lionel is "given" a peerage, and later, a "dormant earldom." In his one self-motivated action after he returns to the narrative, Lionel accosts his own father. As a result of the action, Lionel is struck motionless, "with a vacant eye." Reduced to staring paralysis, Lionel needs Cecil's active "moulding" and "bending;" the only earldom he could possibly retain is the "dormant" one he is "given." Fated from birth to suffer from mental weakness, Lionel is inherently flawed. But he is even more severely hampered by his increasing inability to act as a hero should. He is saved from battlefield danger by the actions of Job, a mental idiot, but a creature who can act effectively. He is freed from prison by Ralph, a madman, but an active old man who can do. He is tended by his wife and "moulded" by her--and that reveals another weakness with the ordering of the action. Cecil is a female. Her "proper" role is passivity. When she acts, as act she must to secure Lionel's life and keep alive the narrative itself, she does the "wrong" thing.

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208 Cooper had conceptualized a narrative with the main romantic roles crossed. The man must act, to be the hero. But Lionel simply cannot act. Females must react, to be proper heroines. But Cecil must originate the action in the end of the romance or absolutely nothing will happen to close the work. This amazingly inactive hero and his markedly mobile beloved cannot possibly generate a "proper" nineteenth-century romance. The "dormant" Earl of Lincoln and a woman whose very name, "Cecil," is even masculine, cannot be made acceptable romantic leads in any traditional period tale. It is as if the beautiful princess snatches the sword from the drooping hand of her listless knight errant and decapitates the dragon: this action simply will not work. In its large conception, Lionel Lincoln has severe flaws which lead it perilously close to parody. But, however near the concept veers toward parody, the text itself is funny only when Cooper intends it to be. Polworth affords frequent "mono-abdominal" comic relief. Job, the "wise-fool," has moments of poignant and pathetic jollity, mocking the British with impunity and offering non-sequiturial sagacity that prompts snickers, smiles, or chuckles. Cooper has control of his tone, however, and the comedic touches remain no more than interruptions in the plot. The romantic story

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209 is the primary focus. It is the subservient but allied Gothic tale which compels: developing Ralph into Sir Lionel Lincoln, Mrs. Lechmere into his hell-born tormenter, Abigail Pray into a perjurer and unwed mother, Job into an illegitimate half-brother to the dysfunctional Lionel, and the hero into a "true" scion of the family, afflicted, lachrymose, and mentally disturbed. It is in this story of sin and suffering that the interest lies. It is the story that Ralph tells which compels. Ralp~, that "ancient" man of but fifty years, the escaped lunatic questing to find his death, casts his grotesque shadow not only on the ceiling of the church, but also across the entire text. He has the ability to control Lionel by a "secret and powerful" (II, 220) influence, a "secret and inexplicable influence" (VII, 254). He knows secrets which seem "concealed from every eye but that of God!" (XII, 283). He speaks with the voice "of the aged messenger of Death" (XXX, 388) and raves of "blood . blood" (VII, 255), of worm eaten corpses being "not dead!" (XII, 283), of twenty years of life in a "mad-house ... herded with the defaced images of his Maker" (XXXII, 397), of damnation and vengeance and "the fiends in darkness" (XXXIII, 405). His presence is gruesome, his character grotesque. That such a demented creature should be the titled father of

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210 the male romantic lead seems inexplicable. Ralph's grotesquerie seems unwarranted. As a "Founding Father," Ralph is a "lost soul." Ralph's action is frenetic in Lionel Lincoln. As examination of the text makes clear, Ralph's action is quest action and his quest object is his own death. Description of his actions in this text link him with a Cooperian type already familiar by 1823. Like the unnamed pilot and the incognito spy, Ralph is a mature and unmarried man who moves peripateticly about the romantic characters. Ralph (Sir Lionel Lincoln), Mr. Gray (John Paul Jones), and Harvey all are American patriots who have suffered for love and who act, during their narratives, to save younger adults at critical moments. Ralph loves the dead Priscilla; Mr Gray loves his childhood sweetheart, Alice Dunscombe, and has lost her to differing political opinions and national duties; Harvey loves his father and suffers a most immediate anguish when that father dies in his arms. In many ways, all three characters are the same type, but Ralph, who burns with an apotheotic desire, is the only one whose words point the basic quest orientation of his existence. He alone has lost touch with reality completely enough to be certainly a questing hero. Harvey and Mr. Gray do unusual acts for very normal reasons; Ralph does his unusual acts for abnormal ones.

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211 All three men will have either liberty or death. For Ralph, alone, can the former only be found in the latter. Even though Ralph is constrained to remain in Boston, he seems nearly always buoyed up by action. From his initial appearance, muttering as he paces and moves "swiftly along the deserted quarter-deck" (I, 213) of the ship, to his closing moments, when he darts and springs forward to fight "with the undaunted fury that a lion, at bay, would turn upon its foe" (XXXIII, 405), Ra~ph acts. Sometimes he acts so cannily that even the narrative seems unable to keep up with him; he appears out of nowhere at unexpected moments, acts, then departs before anybody can frame a response. At other times, Ralph grabs the action "with a sort of irresistible power" (II, 220) and forces the characters to follow him. He rushes into Abigail Pray's warehouse uninvited as soon as he gets ashore. The next day, Ralph appears unexpectedly out of the mists and, after a short conversation, is seen "gliding" away "with amazing swiftness" (IV, 232). When Ralph next appears, Lionel is "startled" (VI, 243) to find Ralph in his room. Despite the raging "tempest" (245), Lionel follows Ralph to a meeting, amazed at the old man's swift progress as he seems "to glide through the night with a facility that was supernatural" (246). After the Sons of Liberty

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212 meeting, Ralph guides Lionel home; when the younger man wishes to speak, "the rapid steps of Ralph rendered his wishes in vain" (249). The fourth time Ralph's actions are described, he is unwell, lachrymose, sanguine, and static. In Chapter VIII alone is Ralph immobile. By his next appearance, Ralph is his proper self again, "running with frantic gestures beating up the fire-arms of twenty Americans, and repeating his cries in a voice that did not seem to belong to a human being" (X, 273) that Lionel must not be hurt. At the warehouse (Chapter XII), at the church (Chapter XXII), at Tremont Street (Chapter XXIII), and behind the American lines (Chapters XXX and XXXII) he "appears" with mysterious abruptness. The first time behind the lines he "rather impel(s]" (389) than leads Cecil to Lionel, pacing "with swift and uneasy steps" (390) until he has arranged for Lionel's escape. Then he leads the couple "with his accustomed activity" (392) to freedom. When pursuit approaches, Ralph evinces a "vast superiority" (XXXIII, 397) of movement over the younger couple; his "gliding" (398) progress handily distances the "apparently ... hundreds" of men who rush "with headlong rapidity" (397) after him. After his second appearance, at which time he leads Cecil and Lionel the remainder of the way back into Boston, he guides the newlyweds to the warehouse where he fights and is

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213 killed. Even after he is dead, however, he is not yet still. Pallbearers transport him to his family crypt. Only when six feet of rich American soil weight his body does Ralph remain immobile. Given the Gothic horror of the scene, the flawed nature of the characters, and the misplaced action, one has to wonder how Cooper ever could have conceived such a self-destructive tale. If this author habitually produced similarly handicapped narratives, one could perhaps be content to note the repetition of the usual error and dismiss the canon. But Cooper had produced The Ey and The Pioneers previously and was to go on to wri~e The Last of the Mahicans, The Prairie, and The Water-Witch before the decade closed. These five works alone offer strong proof that he was well able to craft effective narratives. And Lionel Lincoln is a work Cooper invested much time in, researching the actual scene with care. While the author stated that it was the attempt to marry American history with romance that 6 produced the abortive text, Harvey Birch's inception was historical and Templeton was just a new name for a very real location. John Paul Jones, "the" pilot, lived an historical existence, as well as did Harper/Washington, Marmaduke Temple/William Cooper, and the Edward Effingham/ Fenimore Cooper families.

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214 Hunting for some explanation, the critic blames the author for a lacklustre performance, or opines that he failed to achieve his intentions. But perhaps the problem is that readers of Lionel Lincoln, both early and late, have failed to understand the truth of the work, a truth best seen when the import of the action and its imaginative inception are understood. The way into "The truth the truth the truth! ... the holy and undefiled truth!" as Ralph puts it, may be via a perception of why the characters act as they do (XXIII, 348). To see why Lionel cannot act and to understand why Ralph does what he does offers a startling insight into the veiled and allusive sub-text of this badly misinterpreted "romance." In the final few paragraphs of Chapter XXIII Cooper offers Mrs. Lechmere's grisly death. As the moment approaches, Cecil cries out, "My mother's mother! would that I could die for thee!" (347). Mrs. Lechmere begs, "My time has been too short!--give me days--give me hours--give me moments! ... help me, or I fall!" And, as the "horrid exclamations of the deceased ended the passing gusts of the gale were heard ... and might easily be mistaken. for the meanings of unembodied spirits." The allusions in this brief passage seem evident. Cecil's oddly phrased plea recalls a biblical allusion,

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215 the touching words of King David uttered over the body of his dead son: "Oh my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom! would God I had died for thee, O Absalom, my son, my son!" (II Samuel 18:33). And, in the fifth act of Dr. Faustus, the doctor makes his incrementally decreasing plea to "let this hour be but/ A year, a month, a week, a natural day" (lines 137-138) just before his death. Allusion to Marlowe's drama and to the Old Testament seems to be intentional. In small ways, then, it surely seems that Cooper pens a text recalling and echoing other sources. It is further demonstrable that in large ways Cooper writes texts which owe their inception and structure to other works by other authors. What Beard calls a "playful challenge from his wife's cousin, echoed by Mrs. 7 Cooper," and what is traditionally known as Cooper's declaration, after reading from a current English novel that, "I could write you a better book than that 8 myself," seems to indicate that this author's first work, Precaution, was influenced, at least, by a British model. More than simple "influence" can be illustrated in The Manikins, that obviously Swiftian tale of a voyager to a strange land filled with relentlessly political animals. In The Crater, even the characters acknowledge the debt to Defoe. When the shipwrecked sailor Bob says, "I can see no other hope for us ..

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216 but to Robinson Crusoe it for a while," Mark Woolston replies, "Robinson Crusoe it!--where are we to find even an uninhabited island, on which to dwell after the mode of Robinson Crusoe?" (IV, 30). Cooper, in his "Preface" to The Pilot,asseverates, "In a conversation [Scott's] 'The Pirate' was cited .. The result of this conversation was a sudden determination to produce a work which. might present truer pictures of the ocean and ships than any that are to be found in 'The Pirate.' To this unpremeditated decision is 'The Pilot' due." That Cooper knew these works and many, many more is proven by his numerous references in letters and journals to what he was reading. That Cooper's knowledge of literature was broad and thorough is implicit in his use of epigrams to begin every chapter he wrote in thirty-one of his thirty-three 9 extended fictions. Roughly half the epigrams are 10 Shakespearean, but the several hundred others reveal authors as diverse as Pope (The Last of the Mohicans; XXIV) and Pierpont (The Redskins; XX), Lalla Rookh (The Pathfinder; XXIX) and Lunt (six times), John Milton (eleven times) and Mazeppa (The Sea Lions; XI). A "Lapland Love Song" follows The Merchant of Venice and precedes Two Gentlemen of Verona (The .E_y; XVIII-XX) and Gertrude of Wyoming lies cheerfully beside Byron (The Pioneers; XXXVIII-XXXIX) and Goldsmith (The .E_y; XXIV-XXV).

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217 Keats, Shelley, Coleridge, Wordsworth, Addison, Lunt, Longfellow, Whittier, Bryant: the names make a roll call of authors and works from many lands and in many styles. After Shakespeare, the author most frequently cited in Cooper's headnotes is Byron (thirty epigrams). One of the Romantics, Byron and his followers owed their allegiance to Wordsworth (nine epigrams) and Coleridge, the authors of Lyrical Ballads (1798). Cooper never met Byron, who died in 1824. He seems never to have met Wordsworth. But Cooper did meet Coleridge during the former's 1828 stay in England; he also knew Coleridge's writing. In seven chapter 11 headings Cooper uses quotations from Coleridge. Twice Cooper uses lines from The Rime of the Ancient 12 Mariner. The moment Cooper focuses upon in both quotations from this source is that instant when the skeleton ship containing Life-in-Death hoves between the mariner's ship and the ruddy, setting sun. The moment gives way to the female's "winning" the fate of the mariner on a toss of the dice. Thus, her action seals his fate; as punishment he will wander eternally and reiterate his tale compulsively. An undying man with a doleful burden of past sin serving as the linchpin of a narrative is the central core of Lionel Lincoln; the idea that love can bring salvation out of as macabre a situation as the one I I I

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218 offered in The Rime of the Ancient Mariner--or in Lione l Lincoln--is the essential theme in both works. When the two texts are examined, point for point comparisons begin to thrust themselves forward: Coleridge "ancyent mariner" (I, 1) "skinny hand" (I, 13) "long, and lank, and brown, As is the ribb'd Sea-Sand" (IV, 218-219) "grey" beard (I, 3) "glittering eye" (I, 3; I, 17; IV, 220) "beard ... is hoar" (VII, 652) "eye is bright" (VII, 651) "strange power of speech" (VII, 620) "I pass like night, from land to land" (VII, 618) "What manner man art thou?" (VII, 610) "Alone, alone, all all alone" (IV, 224) Cooper "a man ... in the very extremity off age" (I, 212 ) "aged" ( IV, 2 31 ) "wasted hand" (XIII, 283) "withered hand" (XXIII, 3 4 6 ) "attenuated nearly to emaciation" (I, 213) "furrows . wrinkled h i s hollow cheeks" (I, 213 ) "deep lines of his countenance" (VI, 243 ) "gray" hair (XXXIII, 4 0 5 ) "glowing eyeballs"; "glaring eyeballs" (XXXII, 405) "hoary-headed" (XXXIII, 405 ) "bright rays from his e y es" (XII, 284) "voice of ... uneart hly tones" (XII, 283) "a voice that did not seem to belong to a hu m an being" (X, 273) Ralph moves "like an immaterial being in the dim shades of the nigh t (VI, 249) "Who--who--in the name o f God, who art thou?" (XII, 282) "I am alone" (VI, 244 )

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219 As with Cooper's usual allusions to other works of literature, the images and ideas from The Rime of the Ancient Mariner fit naturally into the text. Cooper does not so much graft bits and pieces from classical or other sources onto his own work as he integrates portions of pre-existing texts into his own. He does not "display" the references; he uses them to make his own text more effective, to convey his meaning in the strongest words and through the use of the most powerful images he knows. Frequently, the words of the Bible or of Shakespeare or the conceptualizations of fine poets, such as Coleridge, or the imaginative force of certain works, such as Robinson Crusoe, offer the "best" vehicle. In Lionel Lincoln Cooper's reliance upon the generative force of Coleridge's poem, which impels the aged and suffering teller of the tale of penance to continue moving, offers an insight into the romance's opening scene. That something unusual and remarkable happens in Lionel Lincoln is evident from the opening paragraphs. Lionel Lincoln opens with the arrival of a vessel at port. Cooper's usual ship arrivals are characterized by cheerful activity as the crew bustles about, hauling lanyards and loosening anchors while the passengers crowd the deck to catch a glimpse of landfall. Chapter XXXII of Homeward Bound offers an example of a usual

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220 landfall. The Effinghams are aboard the Montauk; Captain Truck is in charge. The passengers of the Montauk ... approached the coast. . The ship had been busy in the night .... [T]he packet was running at the rate of nine knots (700). 111 -land,ho! '" The mates and the people laughed, and ... nodded to each other, and the word "land" passed from mouth to mouth with the indifference with which mariners first see it in short passages. Not so with the rest. They crowded together, and endeavored to catch a glimpse of the coveted shore. . [T]he Montauk edged away from [the] highlands, and shaped her course towards a long low spit of sand .... Captain Truck, whose attention had been much diverted from the surrounding objects by the care of his ship, came near the group of passengers (701). Captain Truck ... was about to spring towards the forecastle, with a view to aid and encourage his people .... The yards were now braced forward, and the ship was brought to the wind, so as to head in a little to the northward ... (702). The passengers of the Montauk had just finished their breakfast, when the mate reported that the ship was fast shoaling her water, and that it would be necessary to alter her course in a few minutes, or to anchor. On repairing to the deck Captain Truck and his companions perceived the land less than a mile ahead of them ... ( 70 3) Even when merely observed and reported, a landfall is a most active occurrence. And even when underdeveloped, as is Cooper's first handling of the event, coming to land to anchor is filled with action. In Chapter I of The Pilot, "a group of laborers" watch a "low, black schooner" arrive at the English coast (5). The vessel glides "over the water with the grace and

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221 facility that seemed magical" (6). She holds her way "among the rocks and sandspits, making ... slight deviations in her course" until she gains the bay. Then her canvass is "gathered into folds and the vessel, after rolling for a few minutes on the long billows" swings round "in the currents of the tide" and is "held at her anchor" (7). Immediately following the schooner into harbor is a frigate which arrives to anchor with a "similarity of movements" (7). She floats across the bay on the tide and hoves up, squares her yards, gets.swept landward by the billows, drops her anchor, draws in her sails, swings round on the tide, raises a flag, and launches a small boat that pulls toward shore. Compared with the usual Cooperian landfall, the arrival of the unnamed ship which bears the Lincolns into their American landfall at beleaguered Boston is arrestingly quiescent. The ship had gained the rocky entrance to the harbor, where, deserted by the breeze, and met by an adverse tide, she lay inactive .... The vessel, instead of exhibiting the confused and disorderly throng of licentious soldiery, which would have crowded a transport, was but thinly peopled .... The few seamen who navigated the ship lay extended on different portions of the vessel, watching the lazy sails as they flapped against the masts, or indolently bending their looks on the placid waters .... [A] wide sweep of the quarter-deck was untenanted the listless seamen hung idly over the tiller of the ship .... (212)

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222 The "seamen" who navigate the ship "lay extended'' or hang "over the tiller." They, save for their eyes, might be taken for corpses; for they do nothing but "watch" and "look." But, near to the spot "where the listless seamen hung idly over the tiller of the ship," stood a being of altogether different mould and fashion. He was a man who would have seemed in the very extremity of age, had not his quick, vigorous steps, and the glowing, rapid glances from his eyes, as he occasionally paced the deck, appeared to deny the usual indications of many years. His form was ... attenuated nearly to emaciation. His hair ... was silvered .. Deep furrows, like the lines of great age and long-endured cares united, wrinkled his hollow cheeks .... He was clad in ... gray ... Whenever he turned his piercing look from the shores, he moved swiftly along the deserted quarter-deck, and seemed entirely engrossed with the force of his own thoughts, his lips moving rapidly, though no sounds were heard to issue from a mouth that was habitually silent. (212-213) This "being" is Ralph. He paces the deck, littered with the "extended" bodies of seamen who only "look" about themselves. The comparison of this scene with the opening of Part IV of The Rime of the Ancient Mariner needs no belaboring. The Ancient Mariner has a "soul in agony" (227) so profound that he cannot pray as he stands on the "eldrich" deck of his ship, where "the dead men lay" (235) at his feet. The immobile bodies "look" (247). The mariner "looks" at the Sea (232) and at the deck. Surrounded by the dead, he himself can "not die'' (253)

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223 as the Moon and "a star or two" rise over the waters that reflect "the shadow of the ship" (264). Cooper brings his unnamed vessel into shore "toward the decline of a day" as the "mists" of evening succeed the "shadows thrown from the setting sun" (212). That "luminary" had "just sunk", and "streaks of paler light were playing along the waters" (213). Cooper includes "in the distance the tall spires of churches the "black beacon" of Bunker Hill, and several large British vessels with "dark hulls" which are reflected in the waters. Lionel comes on deck, first "encountering the eyes of the aged and restless being who trod" the ship's "planks," and desires to ride ashore in the "pilot's" boat. The boat has already been "taken possession" of by the "disagreeable old stranger" (214). The "aged stranger" silently continues to occupy the pilot's boat's "principal seat," so Lionel takes another, inquiring if the small boat is ready to depart. "A silent wave of the hand" is the only reply. As the boat is "shot away" from the vessel, twilight melts "into the softer beams from a young moon." All normal sounds are "wanting." When the old man speaks, it is with a "quick and startling vehemence ... of the localities" which the fellow travellers are approaching. When the boat is

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224 ashore, the old man tells Lionel that "should many hours be granted" to him, Lionel will "hear further" of his "sad, sad pilgrimage, in the other hemisphere, to lay his (Ralph's own] bones in this, his native land" (215). Lionel, after he presses Ralph's "wasted hand fervently," responds that he would find such a communication "a singular favor" because, as he says it, "I know not why, but you have obtained a command of my feelings that no other being ever yet possessed--and yet--'tis a mystery, 'tis like a dream!" The curiously inanimate prone seamen of Cooper's homecoming, the startlingly active movements of an ancient passenger, the mysterious command which the old man has over the young man, the pilot's boat, attendant "shrieks" (215) of an idiot rending the quiet: the scene, actions, and characters recall Coleridge's work. Ralph's identification of himself with "love" and with a very Christian God, is made explicit early. Lionel, preparing to bid Ralph adieu, confesses that he "not only venerate[s], but love[s]" this remarkably idiosyncratic and venerably withered fellow passenger. Ralph responds that the ''sentiment" comes "from heaven .. for God's own purposes." The first time he is asked directly who he is, Ralph replies that he is "a man who has numbered ages, and who knows, that as God loves him, so is he bound to love" (II, 221 ) Ralph's

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225 "love" for Boston is "paternal'' (II, 222). Lionel's "filial love" (VI, 244), as displayed in a letter Ralph chances to read, causes the old man to weep; his words, when he rescues Lionel from the American sharpshooters are "for the love of God that you worship, spare him!" (X, 273); his madness resulted from "a blow ... to the heart" (XXXII, 396). Ralph loves Job, Lionel, Cecil, the dead Priscilla, and all the American freedom fighters. He loves both the oppressor and the oppressed, the living and the dead. Grotesque, maddened, and obsessed as he is, his actions all have at their core love, for people, for the truth, and for God. Coleridge's The Rime of the Ancient Mariner is a remarkably static poem in real time. It opens with the mariner stopping the wedding guest, who sinks to rest on a stone until the recounted story closes and the Mariner "is gone." The wedding guest turns from the bridegroom's door, apparently to return home so he may rise "the morrow morn" (VII, 658) from his bed. The other "real time" action in the poem consists of the bride's movement and the movement of the "merry minstralsy" (I, 40). All the tergiversations across all the ocean and all the eternal journeying by the old man are recapitulant actions, recounted to a young man who

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226 sits on a stone because he "cannot chuse but hear" (I, 22). He cannot do aught but listen "like a three year's child" ( I 19 ) Lionel is literally the child of Ralph. Lionel, too, sits on a stone to hear the beginning of Ralph's tale. Although Lionel has sat on stones around Boston previously, this last stone upon which he sinks to rest is a special one; it is his mother's grave marker. The "hallowed spot" (XXXII, 394) is affecting to Lionel: "Lionel sunk on the dilapidated gravestone ... and supported his quivering chin" (395). Here Lionel begs Ralph to "Give me all! hold not back a tittle of thy accursed tale--give me all" (397). On this stone, and in other places, Lionel finally learns "the truth." Then he returns to England, a veritably "sadder" and "wiser" man. As the American "ship of state" attempts to get under way in Boston of 1775, one American, Mrs. Priscilla Lechmere, secures for herself the end she has desired for long years. A generation hence she had imagined and reiterated a foul calumny against her own god-child, Priscilla, the titular hero's deceased mother and the wife of Ralph, Sir Lionel Lincoln. Avowing the illegitimacy of the child Lionel, then a mere infant, she had attempted to coerce the father into marriage with Abigail (Pray/Lechmere). Abigail had already borne

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227 to Sir Lionel an actual illegitimate son, Job. Mrs. Lechmere's scheme had disintegrated when Sir Lionel went mad from grief at the false news. She had arranged for his institutionalization in an English "mad-house, where for twenty long years, he was herded" (XXXII, 396) in "probation" (XXXIII, 402) for his two loves, one sinful and one pure. Only Abigail knows all the facts of the sordid affair; Lionel knows literally nothing beyond the fact that his father, whom he has not seen for many years, is mad and that the Lechmeres are his American relatives. When Mrs. Lechmere manages, finally, to arrange the marriage between her granddaughter and Lionel, heir to the Lincoln property and fortune, she feels a natural exhilaration. After thirty years, her machinations have come to fruition. Yet, even given the mercenary and calculating orientation of her character, she is presented as a woman more grotesque and chilling than any other "refined" female in Cooper's canon. Her primary characteristic is her "air of coldness" (XII, 282), her "cold and formal manner" (XIV, 293), her "cold and worldly look" (XX, 331), her "cold and cautious manner" ( XXIII, 345). She is cold. She is also very "pale" (XII, 281), like "marble" (283). Her features are "death-like" (XII, 283) even before her deathbed scene. This scene, which begins when the newly married Lionel

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228 and Cecil come in to see her in her bedroom, opens with her "wrinkled and emaciated cheeks ... flushed by an unnatural color" (XXIII, 345). The "flush of her cheeks" reveals her exultation, as does the "brightness" in her "hard ~yes" which causes them "rather to glare than beam, with flashes of unbridled satisfaction." Now that she has gained her desires, she does not "seem to think a concealment of her exultation" to be "any longer necessary; for, stretching out her arms, she called in a voice ... which was dissonant and harsh from a sort of unholy triumph." Her external "unguarded exultation", her "disgusting triumph" is at sharp variance with her hidden physical condition. She has a progressive putrefying "inflammation" both "severe and internal" (XX, 327). According to the doctor, an "inward mortification" (XXIII, 346) is killing her; a "disease" preys "insidiously on the vitals of" (XXIII, 347) the woman She is truly "hideously" (348) presented, her internal "mortification" (348) revealed in the "wreck" (345) of her external self. She dies shrieking "out the ravings of her soul." The main characters still do not know the truth of their own history. "As the horrid exclamations of the deceased ended, so deep a stillness succeeded in the apartment, that the passing gusts of the gale were heard sighing ... and might easily be

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229 mistaken, at such a moment, for the meanings of unembodied spirits" (348). Mrs. Lechmere's sex; her function as the agent who, leagued "with the spirits of hell" (XXXII, 396) that control Ralph s fate, condemns him to "generations" of "repentance" (XXIII, 346); her "exultation" at her triumph; the gustings of the wind which come after her final "falling backward" (348) in the bed; and, most especially, her appearance and air of coldness call to mind that moment from Coleridge's poem which is the instant that Cooper chose twice to recall in his two epigrams from The Rime of the Ancient Mariner. In the poem, the skeleton ship bears Life-in-Death to the becalmed vessel upon which the Ancient Mariner languishes. Life-in-Death, who is "far liker Death" (189) than is Death himself, has "skin as white as leprosy" (188), red lips, and "looks" which are described as "free." "Her flesh makes the air cold" (186). She wins the fate of the Ancient Mariner and exults, "I've won, I've won!" ( 19 3) Immediately, a "gust of wind" starts up, making a sound "half-whistles and half-groans" (198) which bears away the skeleton 13 ship. Mrs. Lechmere's "death-like" features and unremittingly "cold" manner and "air" seem excessively grotesque for any well-bred Cooperian female. Her sex

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230 is one that Cooper habitually treats kindly when the representative is of the "better" sort. Mrs. Lechmere is literally too horrible to be a proper female of her station. Her unexplained ability to maintain the incarceration of Sir Lionel Lincoln for twenty years after his return to sanity in an English asylum thousands of miles away from America is perfectly logical if her "true" character is discovered. Just as the atypical activity of a very aged man makes sense if he is an "ancient mariner" and just as the disturbingly and seemingly contrived inactive character of Lionel is requisite if he is to function as the young listener to the mariner's tale, so is Mrs. Lechmere properly presented as inhumanly horrid and manipulative if she has her origins in an unhuman concept. She is "right" in her wrongness, as is Ralph, and as is Lionel. Thus, when Lionel persists in repeatedly sinking to rest on stones which dot the American countryside or towns, there is an eerie feeling of almost archetypal stasis which is "right" for the character but "wrong" for the tale. The hero of a romantic adventure tale should have adventures, not resting spells. The character of a listener, however, such as the "wedding guest" properly is sitting statically; inactivity is t h e correct mode. When Ralph comes finally "home" to America to die an aged and exhausted old man, it is with

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231 an allusive rightness that he "glides" and "runs" and "guides" and "strides" all over city, cemetery, and countryside, for the correct mode for the character is active. When Mrs. Lechmere fills the traditional role in a romance as the pedigreed matriarch of an aristocratic American family, she fails; when she is seen as the chilling female who condemns a sinner to a species of death in life, she is "right." The tensions engendered by characters taking roles not natural and proper in their genre are grave. Lionel Lincoln does not operate effectively on both levels at one time. It is both too near and too wide of the dual targets it aims at; it leaves readers unsatisfied and tensions unreleased. Expectations raised by a narrative celebratory of nascent American statehood and descriptive of glorious movement toward nationhood are not fulfilled when the hero must listen and the heroine succor him. At the same time, the thrust toward the supernatural which the allusions suggest and which the resultant Gothic aspects engender must fribble away into lame irresolutions in corporeal reality. The man who "cannot die" must die, if he is only human; the strange fancies that scene and shadow cast must be contained in and explained by the hereditary mental weakness of Lionel's genetic inheritance. The properly "bloody" surrounding that animates the weird world from which

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232 springs the myth must resolve into no more than carmine dots of distant British regulars. Eerie smoke coalesces into effluvial cannon discharges; night mists settle into atmospheric inversions. The magic of the myth will not fit within the bodies of hungry American characters, and fails to animate a scene bounded by Vermont and New Hampshire. Lionel Lincoln is a flawed work, but not for the reasons Cooper said. It is not that he was unable to do what he tried to do with the work, but that both the things that he attempted were mutually exclusive. The truly Gothic seen~ and the properly functioning mythic characters cannot exist simultaneously with the historic and realistic locale and with actions mandated by their American narrative. Because both the myth and the actual are offered, the result is viable in neither mode. The characters do the "wrong" actions when they are perceived as acting in their prose romance; they do the "right" acts only when they are acting in the wrong genre, the poetic one that no Cooperian narrative ever pretended to be. No wonder Lionel breaks down; no wonder Ralph is mad; no wonder Cecil flees the scene; no wonder the tale aborts. Ralph and Lionel and Cecil keep struggling to ascertain "the truth" of their world. When Ralph finally hears the truth he seeks he again lapses into maniacal ravings. Lionel hears the truth and is frozen

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233 into immobility. Cecil hides her face in "horror." They all lapse into either gibberish or silence. Then Ralph dies and the newlyweds flee. Cooper himself falls silent after one chapter of quick summary. The belief in such "truths" as this text mandates forces the character or author into meaningless words or silence. The text cannot resolve, cannot synthesize, the dichotomy. It is not so much the failure of "history" and "romance" to meld; rather it is the incompatibility of Old World myth and New world fact to join properly into an acceptable whole. The "sadder and wiser" Lionel simply must take his hereditary burden back to the English "home." Only there can the myth close properly; only there can the static listener hope to find rest that is acceptable to both the textual and the sub textual truth. Old World myth is viable only in its geographically correct home place. America cleanses itself of the contamination, allowing Ralph and Mrs. Lechmere to fertilize the ground, and the family money to provide a house for the children who measure up to the demands that active creation of new nationalism requires. The pure spirit of Americanism resides in Agnes; she and her American mate may rightly populate the New World. Inactive Lionel and active Cecil both

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234 have character flaws that render them unfit father and mother for future American generations. Ultimately, the narrative voice reveals that what Agnes did or what the Lincolns did is of little final interest to anyone. Cooper closes the tale after "Death has gathered them in peace and happiness, with all that had gone before" (XXXIV, 410). The inactive hero is, in death, acceptably passive. The improperly active female cannot help but finally be properly inactive when she lies "perfectly dead," like Ralph, in a final resolution of irresoluble tensions (XXXIII, 405). Like the mariner, who "is gone" at his narrative's close, so are "all" characters "gone" at the close of Lionel Lincoln. Cooper discontinued his projected series of American narratives "celebratory" of statehood. Perhaps he is the "sadder and wiser man" who feels a bit "forlorn" at the close of the tale. But the reader who has managed to penetrate the dim depths of the shadows of this text and can see the two levels of the narrative feels a glow of appreciation for Cooper's resounding failure. In the light cast by the rays of the sun, which always arises every "morrow morn" when one has been granted enough time to see it, truths are revealed. The dual truths of this one text help to explain why Cooper felt compelled to stop at this particular moment in American history and tell what is

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235 surely a "tortured" tale. Yet, and always in the Cooperian canon, it is finally a tale of love. Ralph and Cecil and Cooper, too, all "love" ultimately flawed beings: sickly and deceased Priscilla, paralyzed and immobile Lionel, European models and works. America itself forced all the lovers into modes of action acceptable to the times. And the times mandated death of all components springing from the unacceptable Old World source. A cast of dead characters and an aborted literary series offer the proof. All that remains in America in the closing paragraphs of Lionel Lincoln is the authorial voice, doggedly spinning out the last threads of the tale The characters have been but briefly animated, like the corpses on the Mariner's ship, by a force outside of themselves. When that force, the author's voice, departs, they sink beneath the surface of time and disappear into the mists of long ago. But the voice remains. That stubborn, inventive, polemical, and discursive voice of Fenimore Cooper keeps on speaking in all the "morrow morns" of America. Notes 1. Warrens. Walker, James Fenimore Cooper: An Introduction and Interpretation (New York: Barnes & Noble, Inc., 1963). Walker calls Lionel Lincoln an "Historical Novel," Homeward Bound, a "Nautical Novel," Home as Found, a "Socio-political Novel," and The Oak -----

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236 Openings, a "Romance of the Forest" (26). Warren's fifth "type" has one representative, Precaution, and is called the "Society Novel." Homeward Bound and Home as Found Beard calls novels "of manners" (Letters; III, 272) 2. Arvid Shulenberger, Cooper's Theory of Fiction (Lawrence: University of Kansas Publications, Humanistic studies #32: 1955). 3. According to Shulenberger, Cooper's first phase of development, his "Realist-Patriot" decade, consists of ten novels which treat matters "that can be called national, or even patriotic" (11). 4. Beard's "The Early New York Years," Letters; I, 84. 5. A letter to Rufus Griswold in 1844, from Beard's Letters; IV, 460. 6. Nathaniel Hawthorne, too, viewed the attempt to marry European traditions with American settings and characters as an ill-fated attempt. He "continued to envision a disaster as the inevitable result of the America's effort to claim an English heritage," according to Joys. Kasson in Artistic Voyagers: Europe and the American Imagination in the Works of Irving, AIIstcm, Cole, Cooper, and Hawthorne (Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press, 1982) 182. 7. Beard's Letters; I, 24. 8. The anecdote in this form is given in James Fenimore Coo 1 er: An Introduction and Interpretation by Warren S. Waker (New York: Barnes & Noble, Inc., 1963) 12. Walker notes the "endless speculation" on "if" and "if so, which one," and states that "good evidence" exists to point to Jane Austen as the producer of the "English novel" in question. 9. The Manikins and Autobiography of a Pocket Handkerchier (New York: van Rees Press, 1949) do not offer chapter headings. 10. Two articles that treat Cooper's indebtedness to William Shakespeare are w. B. Gates' "Cooper's Indebtedness to Shakespeare" in Publications of the Modern Language Association, 67 (1952): 716-3land Edward P. Vandiver's "James Fenimore Cooper and

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237 Shakespeare" in Shakespearean Association Bulletin 15 (1940): 11-117. Gates proves that 395 of 939 chapter headings in the canon are from Shakespeare's works. Vandiver's close study of Cooper's texts reveals over eleven thousand lines to be of derivation from the Bard. My personal examination of Cooper's epigrams was neither rigorous nor definitive. 11. The quotations are to be found in Miles Wallingford; XXVIII, XXIX; The Ways of the Hour; XIV, XV; Jack Tier; III; The Deersiayer; XXII; Mercedes of CastIIe; XXX. 12. The books containing the quotations are Jack Tier; III and The Ways of the Hour; xv. Cooper seems also to have been interestecr-in "Love," a fragmentary work first published in 1799 and included in the Lyrical Ballads and Sibylline Leaves. In this poem, the lover of one Genevieve woos and wins his beloved through recitation of a romantic "lay." The lay tells of a Dark Ladie who comforts a Knight "crazed" (line 42) by "cruel scorn" (41). She "ever strove to expiate/ The scorn that crazed his brain (59-60) until "his madness went away" (62) and he died. At this point in the lay, the shy Genevieve rushes to the poet weeping. He concludes: "And so I won my Genevieve/ My bright and beauteous Bride (95-96). The three other quotations are each from a different work: Osorio 5: 309; "The Devil's Thoughts," 4; and "Genevieve," 11. 13. Quotations throughout follow the 1798 Lyrical Ballads text as reprinted in The Annotated Ancient Mariner (New York: Bramhall House, 1965).

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CHAPTER SIX HOME AS REFOUND The American Return "These conversations, however, were mere episodes of the great business of the passage." Homeward Bound (VIII, 515) When Cooper wrote Lionel Lincoln he was still learning his trade, still experimenting with his genre, and still measuring his reach against his grasp. After he had been to Europe for a time and after he had 1 forsworn the writing of fiction, he turned his hand to the writing of five European travel books, the American Democrat (1838), and the History of the Navy of the United States of America (1839). None of these works was a commercial success, and such writing seems not to have satisfied the author's creative spirit, for, despite his earlier resolution, in 1838 he returned to the realm of fiction with Homeward Bound and Home As Found. 2 The two volume set is "pivotal." Originally conceived as but one work, the execution of the idea caused Cooper to produce companion volumes. The setting 238

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239 is vintage Cooper, as he imagines it and describes it in a letter to his English publisher. However, unlike any previous work treating the American scene, Cooper sets the time of the narrative in his own present. He writes:" A freak idea has got into my head to write a novel again ... it will be something like 'Templeton in 1837.' This may not be the name, but it gives the 3 idea." Recollecting the inception of the "freak idea" later, Cooper notes that it was "on account of [the Three-Mile Point Controversy] that Homeward Bound and 4 Home as Found were written." While in Europe, Cooper had penned stories aimed at illuminating real concerns of timely significance 5 through a fictional vehicle. Homeward Bound is his first use of an American fiction conceived to elucidate American concerns in narrative form with an underlying didactic focus. It is also Cooper's first American work set in the author's present. While Homeward Bound was "all but ignored by the press when it appeared," Home as Found "was greeted by the ... press with an outcry 6 that would reverberate for years." Based firmly on autobiographical events and displaying opinions as surely personal as they were objectionable to the American Whigs of his era, the reviews of these works and others precipitated Cooper into first two and then

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240 dozens of libel suits which occupied him, i n par t f o r the remainder of his life. 7 These two works are typical of Cooper's output during the period from the early 1830's to the mid1840's, when the 'Littlepage Manuscripts' were 8 completed. During this fifteen year period, Cooper's concerns are for issues at once more personal and more universal than are the central concerns entertained in his earlier works. Cooper's European travels "educated" him in the same way, as his fictions tell, European travels "educate" fictive Americans. Cooper's own "journey action" expanded his horizons manifestly. He discovered feelings for an Italian countryside or a Swiss lake which were precisely like, albeit not as strong as, his feelings for American scenes. He saw that Catholics or Germans or Portuguese peoples all loved and lived and died precisely as did Americans and Britains. While the specific details of a landscape or the particular matters of human conflict might differ, the basic and universal actions and motivations of people were everywhere the same. His use of scenes no t American, and occasionally not even terrestrial (The Manikins), and his utilization of characters not American, and occasionally not even alive (T h e Autobiography of A Pocket-Handkerchief), illustrate h is acceptance of this universality.

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241 His fictions during 1831-1845 are almost equally 9 divided between settings American and scenes foreign. The actions the characters take, their basic motivations, and their human concerns, however, are identical with the acts, motivations, and concerns of the characters in Cooper's earlier American works. He knew that his own personal problems, in general if not specifically, were the same sorts of matters that concerned all people. So, in the fictions of this middle period, Cooper pointedly opens up his own interests to the public. While only the Cooper heirs are concerned with the Three-Mile Point Controversy, all people are interested in the issue of public freedoms impinging upon personal liberty. While only Fenimore Cooper sued Weed for the 1837 libels in the Albany Evening Journal, all people care about their privacy and want themselves and their reputations protected from the defamatory statements of an unrestrained press. From his own life, Cooper took matters of personal concern, offering them to a world readership which he knew shared similar interests. Simultaneously less parochial and more personal, the romances of these years ground in the man but reach out to the world. The Homeward Bound/Home as Found set are typical of the works from the middle period of this author's life. With explicit purpose, Cooper peoples these tales with

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242 Effinghams and sets the most pointedly critical portion of the tale in the Temple/Effingham home in Templeton/Cooperstown. Cooper had recently returned from Europe; he had reoccupied the ancestral home; he had faced conflicts over the ownership of his own land. The main action, the characters, and the scene of the "Home" set, the issues of land ownership, the resolution of the issue, and the American problems of 1837 are fictional aspects that echo real issues, places, and people. Briefly, Homeward Bound treats an Atlantic journey of the return to the American home category, which action is severely interrupted by an extended chase and attendant complications. The full title of Homeward Bound; or, The Chase is precisely descriptive. The more than a score of chapters that orient around the chase action offer the most extended chase sequence in the Cooperian canon. Home as Found concludes the journey home to Templeton. Upon the characters' arrival at the ancestral "safe home place," the Effinghams and their friends work out the social and personal problems engendered by their time, their private affections, and their personal histories. A chase sequence of such extension as this one i s only possible, for Cooper, when the act i on occurs on shipboard. As has been previously noted, such strenuous

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243 action as is chase action necessitates fairly rapid closure or some method of rest from the physical exertion. On a ship, both the pursuer and the pursued can sleep, eat, drink, and even chat while the winds and the waves labor for the actors. In such a situation, the vessel itself becomes the mobile "static central 10 core." Captain Truck reveals just how "homelike" a ship can be: "When a man puts his foot on the deck of a ship he should look upon her as his home, his church, his wife and children, his uncles and aunts, and all the other lumber ashore" (Homeward Bound; IX, 531). A nautical chase is, at once, both an exciting contest in the physical world and an exercise in static patience until the will of God, or the dispensation of fate, is made manifest. Admitting, as it does, this dual aspect, the nautical chase develops within a static core of safety; leagues are traversed as women take tea or men toast "Sweethearts and Wives." An invalid could travel ten thousand miles without rising from the sickbed. This curiously inactive action, this "actless" moving, is the obverse of the active inactivity, the inutile action, people display when on a ship becalmed or trapped ashore or caught on rocks or reefs. And, in Homeward Bound, when the immediate chase action ceases, which action terminates when the ships are caught up in a storm "something very like a hurricane" (XIV, 557) and

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244 the Montauk loses her masts, the craft is driven by waves and currents into immobility on the African coast. Before her stretch the desert sands, "a silent waste, almost without vegetation, and nearly as trackless as the ocean" (XVI, 581). Looming upon an eminence amidst this "picture of desolation" is a "stout, solid, compact sea-boat, that is high and dry on the sands, looking as if he had been built there" (577). The hull has not bilged; the sails are nearly complete; the yards are all in their places. But, "Not a living soul is to be seen." Truck, desperate for new masts for the Montauk, leads a party of his seamen to the wreck. The crew of sailors begins to work feverishly to demast the Dane and to convey the lumber, sails, and rigging to the Montauk. Their "hours of active toil" (XVIII, 594), during which "every man was all activity" (602), culminate as the attempt is made to haul the main mast toward the water. Arabs approach and Truck calls out,"'--heave as if you had a world to move--heave, men, heave!'" (603). But all of the intense activity of two days cumulative labor moves the mast only "half the necessary distance." The spectacle of sailors working frenetically on and around an immobile ship to lug "this stick" (602) to another unmoving craft is the precise obverse of the action offered in much of the preceding seventeen chapters. This scene offers a sophisticated type of reverse

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245 doubling, deftly handled and of "intense interest" both to the characters, whose lives depend upon the outcome, and to the student of Cooper's art. As a fact, Cooper's habitual utilization of doubling is a technique that, when examined and properly understood, reveals structures which illustrate his underlying meanings. Cooper's basic conceptualization of fictive worlds is dualistic. Sometimes it seems that he offers two of everything. Few texts include more numerous or more meaningful doublings than the Homeward 11 Bound/Home as Found duo. And, although all of Cooper's texts contain examples of his dualistic presentation, this duo is one which can be best understood and appreciated by examination of the technique. Cooper's doubling is noteworthy even within Homeward Bound itself. Two middle-aged male Effinghams sail on the Montauk. Two potential suitors for Eve's hand also ship aboard the craft. Each suitor has two names. Two other males travel with assumed identities. Two black cooks prepare the meals; two female attendants serve the heroine. Two corpses are buried at sea. Twice is the Montauk boarded by authority figures, the first time by two men; both boardings are attempts to locate an incognito male figure. Twice does the craft depart from the easternmost commencement of the Atlantic

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246 Ocean and travel westward. Twice do Eve and Captain Truck move off the ship after departure from England and before arrival in America. Twice does the Montauk manage to escape her pursuers, via storm from the Foam and simple departure from the Arabs; twice does the crew "fight", once with nature and once with men; twice are "Sweethearts and Wives" toasted in a celebration which concludes both times with Dodge's reading from his journal. The chase action described between the Montauk and the Foam occurs in two segments, one at the opening of the work and the other at its close. Two men depart the Montauk twice and leave behind them an emotionally charged group of journeyers, once just after she gets under way and once just before she completes her crossing. All the many doublings within Homeward Bound exist because they reflect a very basic orientation of the author. Further, many of the doublings are offered in a conscious and deliberate manner. Cooper uses doubling both because it simply "feels right" to his artist's mind and because it graphically and pointedly makes matters clear. The repetition of nearly similar events occurring at different times or the presentation of notably similar characters, settings, objects, and conversations allows him to show relative merits of two examined acts, people, things, or viewpoints. He can

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247 make his point without preaching; he can show relative worth and not merely tell about it. Thus, when the Montauk is first boarded by authority figures and the two men are forced to depart without the people they seek, the action seems simply a blocking mechanism to add tension to the beginning of a journey. However, when the Montauk is boarded the second time and the authority figure departs with two men whose aliases are penetrated, the first action is recalled in light of the second and the second act is understood by virtue of the differences between the two. An attempt by lawyers to thwart true love ends in frustration; an action by a loyal man to do his duty closes with successful movement. A "wrong" act (a speciously "legal" machination) is punished; a "right" act (authoritatively legal and morally correct) is rewarded. Similarly, the Montauk's first departure from the east has a singularly unreliable commencement; chase action is notoriously unpredictable because actors move in response to their opponents. A chase may lead anywhere, and the Montauk's initial departure, fleeing the Foam, illustrates the basic difficulty implicit in responsive action. "Let them that want me, catch me," Truck crows (III, 491). His orientation is backward looking; his focus is on the "stern chase." His second

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248 departure, from the African coast, does not commence until after the "escape" from the landlocked but inimical Arabs has closed. Cooper takes pains to point the difference between the two departures. It is after "all dangers from the Arabs ceased" (XXVIII, 675) that the ship's refitting, a necessary precursor to her right commencement of successful journey across the ocean, is completed. "Matters were now changed," Cooper notes. Truck "no longer" entertains "any apprehension of his old enemy the Foam." He ejaculates, "Thank God, thus revealing a proper concern with the correct authority, and mentions his confidence that he can probably now "make the East River," revealing that his action has finally a forward-looking orientation. This is the correct focus for the journeyer. Truck's properly focused second departure ends in successful journey completion; his improperly focused first departure has previously ended in two fights, a shipwreck of sorts, and a chase which is only apparently closed. Chapter XXXII reintroduces the Foam, still pursuing her prey. Truck's right action, as captain of a packet, is journey; the journey closes in success. His wrong action, his chase action, closes twice without really closing properly either time. The Foam reappears and the romantic lead departs, leaving behind complications which will take another score of chapters

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249 to resolve. Through presentation of two acts is the "right" meaning revealed. The actions themselves convey the meaning of the world and vivify the correct truth. The habitual doubling technique, so effective in Homeward Bound, continues to operate even after the American home is reached and the second volume of the set begun. Within Home as Found Cooper doubles his salt-water Captain Truck with the fresh-water "commodore." The two men become fast friends and drinking companions and two of their "punch parties" are presented minutely. Eve finally is doubled with her American relative, the lovely Grace Van Cortlandt; Steadfast Dodge's double, Aristabulus Bragg, appears; Eve and Paul touchingly realize both their childhoods were spent without a mother; and Paul finds his second and real father, John Effingham, and discovers his own second and "real" name. Eve receives two proposals of marriage; two marriages occur as two Effingham fathers look on proudly; and two brides prepare to journey to England, accompanied by two fathers-in-law, two husbands, and two other American men, Mr. Howel and Mr. Wenham. Two American home scenes are developed, New York and Templeton, and their respective societies examined. In New York, Eve attends gatherings on two well developed occasions. First, she has a night "out" to

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250 see society at the Jarris party, the Hawker h ome and t h e Houston "ball." That night she views Miss Bell, who embodies all the negative American qualities in opposition to those vivified by Mrs. Hawker, which worthy has as her complimentary double Mrs. Bloomfield. On Eve's second well developed social outing in New York, she attends a "literary evening" where Captain Truck leads a dual life unknown to himself. As a result of Aristabulus Bragg's false asseverations, the members of the literati, especially such creatures as "Miss Monthly," "Miss Annual," and "the celebrated Pottawattamie Prophet 'Single Rhyme'" (VI, 44), believe the honest American captain to be a "celebrated English writer and wit" (45) and, indeed, a "member of the clergy" (50). In New York the horrible December 16, 1835 fire at Wall Street rages for a night, doubling with Templeton's exquisite pyrotechnics on the July 4, 12 1835 "Fun of Fire." In Templeton, Eve goes out twice for excursions around and upon the lake. She also has doubled walks. The first walk is "through the garden" with Paul; the second, again with Paul and others, is the movement to the church and back home for the "double ceremony" (XXIX, 218). Two nearly identical portraits of a dead woman answer the questions about Paul's parents and solve the mystery of his birth.

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251 Characteristically, the doubling explains the world. Doubled visits in New York City are seen to be of little ultimate import when the doubled dual outings in the Templeton area occur. Miss Bell's utter lack of worth is manifest when the doubled Mrs. Hawker and Mrs. Bloomfield are developed. The doubling in this latter case serves not so much to point out differences in relative merit, for both Hawker and Bloomfield are "the best" females America produces; rather, it functions as an exponential, as opposed to arithmetic, presentation. The doubled "good" matrons (which females are balanced by Templeton's Mrs. Abbot and Mrs. Bumgrum), like the doubled "bad" editors, Dodge and Bragg, display more than simple "goodness" twice or "badness" seen two times. The doubling of truly alike people or things sets up a resonance that amplifies the basic meaning in a "tenfold" manner, rather than merely in a "twofold" fashion. The doubling of likes is similar to the profound "rightness" felt when the last word in a crossword puzzle is known; the word fits both horizontally and vertically and it is also the ultimate key into the closure of the whole. It is right when seen from either angle or when viewed as the ultimate component in the gestalt. Such doubled identical phenomenon are "perfect." The women are perfect in

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252 their rightness; Dodge/Bragg are perfect in their moral and social wrongness. Thus, Eve's two "wrong" New York outings, balanced by her two doubled Templeton outings, function organically. The heightened wrongness of going out in New York society is seen when the amplifiedly right actions of going out in the Templeton area are presented. New York's fire destroys; Templeton's fires illuminate. Those who walk out in New York's nights often find terror and chaos; those who walk out in Templeton's nights find fun and true love. The identical action may be sometimes right and sometimes wrong, according to this text; which it is, apparently, depends on where the action occurs. When the Effinghams are in New York, none of their actions leads to truly valuable results; when the Effinghams are "at home," all their major acts, ultimately, lead to some sort of good. Aspects double between the two books, also. Most immediately, the titles, each containing three syllables, begin with "Home." Both works treat the physical movement through space of identical characters, who first cross the sea and subsequently journey across the land. The journey portion of Home as Found is far briefer and simultaneously more varied than is the journey in the earlier volume. In Homeward Bound sailing action aboard the Montauk is the only main

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253 action. In Home as Found action around New York Cit y upon a steamboat and canal boat, and in carriages animates the first nine chapters. Just as the characters had earlier arrived at the "safe home place" of Homeward Bound, the Montauk, so do they arrive together at their country home, the "Wigwam." Both books treat, for their remainders, actions chaining out from and back to the "static core location," be it a ship or a house. A remarkably similar series of actions occurs in both books. In Homeward Bound the passengers have been "at home" on the Montauk unable to leave while the ship is underway. As soon as the coast of Africa is approached, however, and the Danish ship is sighted, Eve and numerous companions take an "expedition" (XVI, 579) ashore to look at the remarkably "melancholy spectacle" (581). The mast of the craft, a fine "Norway pine," thrusts up against the sky. The "silent" and sandy landscape is completely still. The characters return to the Montauk. When next Eve leaves the safety of the home place, swarms of nomadic Arabs have arrived at the ship. Before Eve has the strength to board the little boat which will take them on their second departure from "home," she takes a sip of a "cordial," a restorative beverage (639). At a spot "about a mile from the ship" (XXXIV, 643) they put to shore. There,

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254 they "walk about," light "a fire," take some "tea," and enjoy "comestibles" offered by a servant (643). Arabs are sighted all about. The main characters depart. After a time, the Montauk is retaken and they return to their cabins. After the Effinghams return to Templeton, it is apparently "about a week after (Eve's] arrival'' (XIII, 92) before she and several companions go out "to the lake" (XIV, 98). They board a skiff and cross the water, encountering the commodore, viewing the "Silent Pine" that "speaks of a thousand things to the 13 imagination" (104), enjoying the "perfect echo" of the rocks and the "eloquent silence" of the woods, and returning home. A few days and no notable action later, travelers arrive at the Wigwam. The next day quite a group accompanies Eve out "on the Otsego-Water'' (XIX, 140) where, encountering the tars, Captain Truck and the commodore, the party reaches shore, drinks punch, walks about, and enjoys a picnic which "servants" offer. John Effingham discusses "the catastrophe-character of this point, on which woman is said never to have been wooed in vain" (XX, 149). While Sir George proposes to Grace, as expected, Aristabulus Bragg takes the opportunity to propose to Eve, rendering "himself doubly interesting b y commencing the favorite occupation of whittling" (152). Grace accepts; Eve declines; the group returns home.

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255 In both sequences, the main characters have been "at home" for a static period. They depart to sightsee, looking at a thrusting tree which prompts a strong emotional response, and noting how silent is the scene. They return home. Time passes. Travelers arrive. The main characters depart again for approximately the same scene, located at no great distance from the home spot. When they arrive, they walk about, take liquid refreshment, and eat the food servants have prepared. In both these second "expeditions" a threat of some sort is present that was not present when the scene was first visited. On both of these second expeditions, alcohol is mentioned and drunk; it is not discussed on either of the first outings. All four expeditions chain out from and back to the safe home place. The many similarities between the two doubled sequences are remarkable. The differences are highlighted by this mode of presentation, of course. The first scene arouses melancholy; the second, awe. The first tree is dead, crowning a derelict wreck; the second is living, reaching back even to the moment "when Columbus first ventured into the unknown sea" (XIV, 104). The first meal is a hurried affair, necessitated by hunger; the second is a picnic. The first threat is of life-or-death magnitude; Arabs will kill or abduct their enemies. The second threat is of a social

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256 magnitude; the potential "catastrophe" of the "point" would be no worse than marriage. What is more interesting in the two sequences than particular points of similarity or difference is the action ordering sequence. It could not be proven, and might well be doubted, that Cooper planned these two doubled sequences to be so similar. But whether he did or not, they both illustrate how pervasive his doubling technique is and how he plans his narrative development with such sophistication. In order for the second outing in each book to resonate properly, he leads up to a logically operating first outing. Thus, the return to the already known place is a radically different experience when the added danger shadows the already familiar scene. The characters, having lived longer and learned more, are unsettled in the scene where previously they had been merely curious. Their experience, and the unavoidable change which time brings, alters what the same scene means to them. And recognition of how carefully crafted and deftly handled are such doubling action sequences should alter the critical evaluation of Cooper's actual artistic achievements. The series of events only seems to just happen; actually, the action is controlled and crafted to convey the desired effect.

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257 At the precise moment where Homeward Bound opens, immediately before the beginning of an Atlantic voyage aboard the Montauk, there closes Home as Found. Eve's journey, her return to home, has offered her the opportunity for self-definition. But lovely Grace has not traveled; her attitudes remain too parochial. Mr. Howel and Mr. Wenham are also in need of the educating which only travel can offer. Too much institutionalized education can spoil a person: "Too much learning. has made [Dodge] mad" (Homeward Bound; XXVII, 666) and "Too much learning hath made thee mad!" (Home as Found; XXIX, 224). However, travel can only improve, elevate, and refine the aristocratic character. The positive benefits associated with journey action exist because Cooper believes that action to be the metaphor for human life. Both these texts--indeed, all his texts--display this metaphor at their core. To be in motion is to be alive; those who live, move. Captain Truck calls the ocean "the highway of nations" (Homeward Bound; v, 508) and is seen as a man "fitted to steer his bark through the trackless ways of life" (VII, 520). As he says Life is like a passage at sea. We feel our way cautiously until off soundings on our own coast, and then we have an easy time of it in the deep water; but when we get near the shoals again we take out the lead, and mind a little how we steer. It is the going off and coming on the coast that gives us all trouble. (XVIII, 596)

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258 The end of the metaphorical journey is, as it would have to be, the eternal "safe home place." "There is but one abode for the blessed" (XXII, 634). "There is a port to which we are all steering ... and that port is Heaven" (XXX, 686). God's own "mansion in the sky" is, of course, the ne plus ultra of "safe home places," the eternally static central core location. In the opening chapter of Homeward Bound Eve's second utterance is: "I have been educated ... in so many places and countries ... that I sometimes fancy I was born a woman, like my great predecessor and namesake, the mother of Abel" (I, 477). When the names of Mr. Sharp (Sir George Templemore) and Mr. Blunt (Paul Powis/Assheton/Effingham) are mentioned, a character opines that "the names may be a clew to the characters" (II, 483). Cooper notes: "'Do persons, then, actually travel with borrowed names in our days?' asked Eve, with a little of the curiosity of the common mother whose name she bore." She is "without a blemish or defect, the perfect creature" (XXII, 632). It is not until Home as Found, though, that Cooper's Eve walks in "the garden," the New Eden of Templeton. There Paul proposes, lit by the lovely fireworks, and she accepts. Thus, the "two as perfect beings as one ordinarily meets with" (XXVI, 191) in this life can join their two lives into one. Wherever Eve is "will be . earthly

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259 paradise" (XXIX, 220) for those who love her if they are with her. Perfect Eve, her name a veritable "clew" to her character, is American by birth and European by education. She longs for America when abroad but loathes the manners and the citizens when at home. She and the "orphaned" Paul may be "as perfect" as any humans can become, but they are also fated to keep moving if they wish to remain happy. Birth and training have rendered them unfit for both Europe and America, for the former is not "home" and "home" is not a place where they can be happy. Both Eves, Cooper's and God's, are "expelled" from their "gardens." Eve Effingham's expulsion is not mandated for any transgression on her part. She is much too pure to have sinned. The "curse" falls upon Eve Effingham simply because she has the misfortune to have been born at the wrong time. America of 1837 is itself too flawed and sinful, too far off the "right" track, to contain a character as perfect and perfectly "right" and proper as is Eve. Her wandering future, though, will have its inception in the same "divine discontent" that it was the Biblical Eve's lot to feel as the "flaming sword" turned her away from the gates of paradise. If Eve and Paul really are "perfect" beings to Cooper, then one characteristic which helps render them perfect is their ability to journey. The author himself

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260 had been in Europe and loved America throughout his sojourn abroad. He had subsequently come home and found his homeland changed in ways which he believed to be very much for the worse. But he could not leave. Lawsuits and family matters, children and habit constrained him, held him here. Seeing his America for a "second time" after his own stay abroad, he was older and wiser. He came to be sadder as well. Perhaps he was sad because in life he could neither leave the nation nor properly return to it, the America he loved having disappeared during his absence. Perhaps Eve and Paul are "perfect" because they can leave. Being his creations, the couple can manage to solve the problem they share with their creator; they can go and continue to love America because they can leave. Cooper cannot. The American Urn "'Tis the constant rolling of the ball that causes the snow to cleave!" The Water-Witch (X, 552) One final series of doublings must be noted before Cooper's artistic sophistication can be appreciated. rt is the inherent doubling that comes with telling the Templeton tale unto the fifth generation, using the setting "hallowed" by Natty Bumppo's presence, and

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261 occupying the ancestral house with young Effingham lovers once again. As Cooper himself says it, "The motive for making the imaginary connection was 14 obtaining some reflected interest." Homeward Bound and Home as Found link directly and textually to The Pioneers. In chronological order, immediately after the narrative of the Effingham return to Templeton, Cooper goes on to end Natty's story in The Pathfinder (1840) and The Deerslayer (1841). In The Deerslayer, the last written episode of the Leatherstocking saga, Natty is at his most mythic and his most youthful; the Otsego region is in its most idyllic and natural state. The character and his scene are most temporally removed from the 15 author's present. Home as Found is the linchpin that allows Cooper to offer a temporal conclusion to his tale in this setting and simultaneously a bridge to his development of the Leatherstocking's character. Attempting to depict the changed and changing American scene as he found it after his European return caused Cooper to focus clearly on that home. As his strident fictions following show, he was angry. He was unable to believe that America was "right" and he was unhappy with what was happening to the land. But his anger could not change what existed. In Home as Found he created a scene, similar to his own, and, when his characters could not bear the environment, Cooper let

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262 them leave. Cooper could not physically leave his Cooperstown scene, could not escape his real time and place. But, in the creation of a new fiction, Cooper was able to find for his imagination an escape. Thus, when Cooper has crafted a Templeton of 1837 and been thereby forced to recognize its basically intolerable nature, he flees his own feelings of anger and impotence by going forward with the Leatherstocking series, but advancing in a "retrograde action" to the past. The author Cooper, finishing up the Templeton saga of 1837 in 1837 cannot go forward in "real time" to escape. But he shows he will not stay in that Templeton which he cannot leave. Like Eve, Cooper in that place is not happy. He releases her in Home as Found; he releases his own imagination in The Deerslayer. Janus like, he looks both forward in real time as author to a continuation of his most successful character's life and backward into that character's fictive history. So it is that in 1838 Cooper is grappling with the problem of saving Templeton (Cooperstown) from its own being with recourse to a soon-to-be-created preterate past. In order to work this logically impossible puzzle, he has recourse to a miracle: Natty is raised from the dead, moved into myth, and given a pre Lapsarian world to occupy. When Natty first views the Glimmerglass as a youth in 1740, his action for Cooper

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263 and for the reader is an example of that doubled return to place which Homeward Bound and Home as Found have already used so effectively. Cooper and his contemporar y readers know that Natty has already been to Templeton and has left the despoiled scene an aged and heartsick wanderer in 1793. Part of the power of the Deerslayer myth is the echo of Natty's "past-future" which, in 1837, is simultaneously both finished and also only ready to be created. The author and the reader both know the completed past which is, to Natty, the un knowable future. His arrival is the reader's return; and 1793 is Cooper's future in 1837 as he closes Home as Found. While Homeward Bound does contain vague intimations of its inherent relationship with The Pioneers, it does not make explicit what relationship, if any, the Effinghams of 1837 have with the Effinghams of 1793, nor does it precisely identify the longed-for American home as being the Otsego house of Elizabeth Temple Effingham. Cooper saves the revelatory moment until Home as Found has begun. In Chapter I the "house in Templeton" (9 ) is noted to be the same house Mr. Doolittle built. And, after the "task" (VI, 42) of relating the specious New York conversations and ultimately worthless visitations is dutifully complete, Cooper offers the anticipated observation: "Mr. Effingham, who the reader will

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264 probably suspect by this time to be a descendant of a family of the same name that we have had occasion to introduce into another work, had sent orders to have his country residence prepared" (VIII, 58). Soon, Cooper adds that the house is located in "the Templeton of the Pioneers" (IX, 66). Eve Effingham's "return to home" is seen to be a second return to the identical location which had received Elizabeth Temple in 1793 (1823). While the facade of the house itself has certainly changed, the interior has not; while the year has changed, the basic journey action has not; while Homeward Bound suggests a "doubled'' return to home, Home as Found does not--it makes certain the relationship. Both beautiful and refined young females, Elizabeth Temple and Eve Effingham, are motherless Both have received "finishing educations" and, after extended absences, both are returning to the same town to li v e in the same house. Both arrive in the company of their father and assorted friends. Both unexpectedly meet up with the noble young men who will become the adoring young husbands before their tales close. In both works, these males join the journey action after a brief interruption of that action and in practically the same location; the augmented party then continues its movement to the safe home place in the valley below. Both the suitors have an air of mystery about t h em;

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265 neither young man's proper name nor his father is revealed. Both young men are later shown to have a legal right of ownership in the safe home. After the arrival, the action recounted in both tales is simple chained action, out from and back to the home. Elizabeth Temple's journeys away from the "castle" are movements into a frontier community. She faces such dangers as wild animals and raging forest fires, but in her social exchanges she experiences few problems beyond those between typical young lovers who wish to marry. Templeton in 1793 is in the stage of development which Cooper describes as a "period of fun, toil, neighborly feeling and adventure" (Horne as Found; XII, 84). It is "the happiest" interval of the settlement because the "great cares of life are so engrossing and serious that small vexations are overlooked." Elizabeth's outings, which occur in nicely choreographed order to compliment the natural passage of the seasons, have something of the "reckless gayety, careless association and buoyant merriment of childhood." Eve's four major outings in Templeton do not occur in rhythm with the seasons. She arrives in Templeton in the spring, which is "the least pleasant" (V III, 58 ) season, "its character being truly that of 'winter lingering in the lap of May.'" Sometime after July 4,

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266 but surely before fall has arrived, she is married and the narrative closes. Eve's life is separated from that natural rhythm which animates Elizabeth's existence; Eve's era is too refined and social to admit the seasons. She lives in an American scene where society has begun "to marshal itself, and the ordinary passions have sway" (XII, 84). Nature's influence has given way entirely to man's. This "second period" (85), according to Cooper, is characterized by "struggles for place, the heart burnings and jealousies of contending families, and the influence of mere money" (84). Cooper asseverates: "This is perhaps the least inviting condition of society." Although no hostile animals threaten Eve when she walks out and even though the only fires in Templeton are the "Fun of Fire" rockets, she is beset by social unpleasantnesses. In fact, Cooper imports friends, family members, and lovers into Templeton because literally nobody in the community is sufficiently cultured and mannered to be Eve's close friend, beloved aunt or uncle, or worthy mate. Eve's dangers are unwelcome marriage proposals and prying eyes or clattering tongues. Just how grave these dangers are to Eve may be inferred by her failure to leave her property even one time except in the company of a guardian male or males.

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267 In 1793 Elizabeth is safe from the citizens. If savage danger threatens her, a rescuer appears and she is saved. In 1837 Eve is threatened by democracy. If social dangers threaten her, nothing, ultimately, can save her. When Aristabulus Bragg proposes, Eve flees him, returning home. When she is married, Bragg and two other locals are "rude and obtrusive intruders'' (XXIX, 218) into this very most private ceremony. The bridal parties flee "rapidly from the church" for the Wigwam. They depart so swiftly that Eve's father does not even take the time to kiss her. Once at home, the brides retire further, each to her "dressing-room" (219). Nothing but retreat from the social danger can give peace. There is no chance that Eve can be "saved" from her danger by the community because the community is itself her enemy. She is caught in the "second period" of American history, and the era is truly disgusting to her. After the passing of the "influence of the particular causes" (XII, 84), society in this land may finally move to the level of "civilization''; but such a movement takes more time than Eve, or Cooper himself, could wait for patiently. Although America's citizens have changed and their society has changed with them, the physical American scene remains much the same. Both the returning parties, the Temples and the Effinghams, travel the same

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268 overland route. Their way, the ttrnore ancient route to Templeton," (Horne as Found; IX, 64), winds "along the brow of a precipice" (The Pioneers; I, 549), beneath "the branches of lofty pines" (Horne as Found; 64), and leads, at its "summit" (The Pioneers; 550), to an "opening in the trees" (Horne as Found; 65) overlooking Templeton. Here both parties halt. In 1793 Marmaduke Temple shoots Edward Effingham here; in 1837 John Effingham locates for Eve "the precise spot where one of our predecessors lodged a shot in the shoulder of another: (Horne as Found; 65). In 1793 Natty appears immediately after the shooting stops; in 1837 Eve responds immediately to John that she now realizes he has brought their party on this trail so as to "visit some spot hallowed by a deed of Natty Bumppo'stt (Home as Found; 65). After the wounded Edward joins the 1793 party and the "poetic" Paul joins the 1837 party, both groups resume their journey. In 1837 "the whole party" laughs (71); in 1793 Natty's "remarkable laughs'' (556) echo off the pines. The house both parties enter in the valley below is developed symbolically in both works. This house, "Effingham upon Doolittle" (Horne as Found; XII, 88), is Fenimore Cooper's archetypal "safe home place" which overlooks the Glimmerglass and dominates the Templeton scene. While it is far from beautiful to look at, both

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269 early and late, it is a safe and comfortable place in which to live. Cooper never threatens it with fire or flood and ever peoples it with owners kind, fair, noble, and good. Cooper's conscious use of symbolism is an aspect of his writing which had not been accorded the comprehensive study it merits. Most critics of Cooper's work find portions of favorite works which exhibit an effective use of symbols, but no critic has given Cooper's entire canon concentrated study with a view to making valid the argument for Cooper's use of symbol. Symbols, broadly, may be said to be any aspects of a literary production which both are a mimetic part of the fictive sphere and which also explain a portion of that world. Any "real" object may be used as a symbol, but not all objects are so used. The author's presentation of the object determines which way the object functions in a work. It is well beyond the scope of this study to present a definitive argument on Cooper's use of symbolism in any particular work or in his complete works. A brief review of the more valuable criticism on this author reveals that an underdeveloped but fairly uniform opinion seems to prevail: Cooper does 16 make use of symbols. Henry Nash Smith describes Leatherstocking as "by far the most important symbol of the national experience

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270 17 of adventure." R. w. B. Lewis finds Cooper's "scene" to be a "functioning symbol itself" and sees 18 Natty as America's "full-fledged fictional Adam." Marius Bewley locates Cooper as standing "at or near the beginning of the symbolist tradition in American 19 literature." Donald Davie asseverates that Cooper's 20 images are "symbols." George Dekker awards Cooper the honor of being "the first" American to make use of 21 symbolism. Richard Slotkin states that Cooper's use of the wilderness reveals it to be a "refuge from reality, where issues might be resolved on a 22 symbolic plane." H. Daniel Peck observes that Cooper does not even need to "explain the meaning of his 23 symbol," the Glimmerglass. In The Pioneers, Cooper offers an extended exterior description of the house as it appears after its construction by Doolittle and others. In later years Cooper was to reveal that his 1837 description was influenced by his own residence in that "the pediments of the entrance to the paternal door upheld the columns, instead of the columns upholding the pediment." Cooper notes that this phenomenon was useful to him because it 24 was "characteristic of frontier architecture.'' Cooper states that he also had included the "jog in the street at the tavern," as being "descriptive of the manner in 25 which facts defeat calculations in laying out towns;"

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271 that is to say, aspects of the scene were specifically used to convey a particular idea that had an intentional meaning. The "jog in the street" is both a part of the mimetic scene and it is also an object which offers an explanation of the fictive world. The house, too, with its "unfortunate gap" (The Pioneers; v, 573) between the base of the columns and the columns themselves, which properly function to hold up "the superstructure" but which are here supported by the "shingled roof," reveals a meaning. The house does not merely provide a setting; it simultaneously explains the world. Because the "castle" has been built by rough and ready pioneers whose tastes are unrefined and whose "stores of learning" are but superficial, the construction has "proceeded from ignorance of the square rule" (565). The settlers know what they want, the "best" house they can build, but their best efforts yield a flawed structure, a home with a "gap." When seen from afar, the Temple home appears to be a proper "mansion ... towering above all its neighbors" (III, 563), built of obdurate "stone" (564), and presenting "a front, on whichever side it might happen to be seen" so as to evince "no weak flank for envy of unneighborly criticism to assail." While it is not beautiful, the house is comfortable and appears to be sturdy. Close examination, however, reveals that the yearly settling

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272 of the very earth itself has caused the "steps . to yield" (V, 573). In place of a supporting base, a "few rough wedges were driven under the pillars to keep them steady, and to prevent their weight" from pulling them loose from th~ roof, which is unintentionally "by far the most conspicuous part of the whole edifice" (III, 564 ) The house is a symbol for the American democratic "edifice." The basic plan is a compromise generated by a diverse group of free thinkers, each with his own contribution to make to the edifice. To "its neighbors" the edifice seems to be a large and strong and "towering" creation. However, close examination reveals weaknesses: the columns are held up by "rough wedges" in a makeshift attempt to keep the entire roof from collapsing and the unavoidable "settling" which the passage of time brings has caused the entrance to the structure to "yield." The edifice of democratic society rests upon an uncertain foundation, the "common man," and time is undercutting the structure erected according to the original plans. According to Cooper's personal views, the common citizen lacks the wisdom to support securely the "edifice" which only apparently is so strong that no "criticism" could possibly "assail'' it successfully. Actually, the "common" man is too unreflective and greedy to give the stalwart support which the democratic system must have if it is to remain

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273 the "model of imitation" (565) which its "neighbors" believe it to be. The "conspicuous" roof seems to offer: enough space to shelter all peoples, but the foundation is in need of some shoring up. According to Cooper, if the "edifice" is under the control of such basically intelligent men as Judge Temple or Mr. Effingham, the ignorances and excessive desires of the Doolittles or Braggs can be curbed sufficiently enough that the structure can remain "far from uncomfortable" (III, 564). Still, the natural "settling" provides a constant danger exacerbated by the original miscalculations of inexperience; discernable "gaps" remain and must be attended to for perfect security to be maintained. As long as Temples or Effinghams people the house, it will not absolutely collapse. However, if agents such as Bragg are left in charge too long, frightening changes may occur. If the disposition of the house were to remain in Bragg's hands for a long time and if he were to be ungoverned by his "betters" during the interval, the very rights of ownership of the house itself might be as endangered as are those of the "rude house" (Home as Found; XIV, 105) where the Effinghams "have so long been accustomed to resort for picnics." After their European return, the Effinghams learn that they are in danger of losing their little "house" entirely to the greedy citizens of Templeton who do not

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274 realize the legal title assures ownership to the Effingham heirs. While Eve and her father were away and Bragg had been functioning as their "land agent" (I, 8 ) the common people had somehow decided the picnic spot was theirs. They had freely used and even abused the little "house;" it was "dilapidated, and indeed injured by the hands of man" (XIV, 105). What holds true for the doubled little "house" is seen to be all but holding true for the big one. Almost immediately upon the Effinghams' return, a group of rough citizens start up a game of "ball'' in the front yard. They "play" on the grounds of the Wigwam itself, "directly in front of the house" (XI, 81). They whoop, "enliven their sport with ... oaths," engage in "rude brawls," "bawl," "yell," and "roar," making a noise so offensive that the Effinghams are actually obliged to withdraw "each to his or her own room" (82). The very property of the large house has been subjected to "an invasion" (81, 82) and its residents obliged to retreat before the masses. Fortunately for the Wigwam, the Effinghams have returned, albeit at the eleventh hour; the house, and the democracy, is not yet beyond reclamation. The American democratic system of 1837 ma y well need as extensive a restoration as did the Effinghams' residence. But, as Mr. John Effingham's efforts on the ancestral home reveal, careful work b y

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----------------------------275 right-thinking and well-educated leaders can still reclaim the edifice, be it house or nation. Just as the basic function of the house, to provide comfort, needs no large change, so do the basic tenets of the republic need no actual alteration. The changes that time brings require the "restorers" to devote themselves to their project, but their efforts can still succeed. The interior of the house, and the kernel of the democratic system, can comfortably remain unchanged in all major respects. The Castle/Wigwam in Templeton is Cooper's first well developed symbol. It has a dual level of symbolic import. First, its physical structure embodies the American system and institution itself. Second, its enclosed interiority embodies the static central core which is at the very heart of Cooper's artistic consciousness and personal world view. While both the "castle" of 1793 and the "wigwam" of 1837 present an exterior flawed and in need of improvement, the really important portion of the house, the interior, is comfortable and basically unchanging. Not surprisingly, the interior is biographically "real." In his "Introduction" to The Pioneers, Cooper states that much of the tale delineates "that which [the author] had known, rather than that which he might have imagined" (546). Although the exterior of the house in

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276 Templeton is presented with "some liberty" the "author indulged his recollections freely when he had fairly entered the door. Here all is literal, even to the severed arm of Wolfe, and the urn which held the ashes of Queen Didoi ( 548). when Cooper wrote at length to Horatio Hastings Weld, in a March 1842 letter for Brother Jonathan which entertains the specific issue of real versus imagined in Cooper's recent writings, he again states, "one room, the hall ... is accurately given, even to the urn which was supposed to contain the 26 ashes of Queen Dido." In The Pioneers, entrance through the front door and movement into this "real" hall brings the characters immediate comfort. As soon as the exterior door closes, "the party [is] at once removed from an atmosphere that was nearly at zero, to one of sixty degrees above" (V, 574). The "large hall" is "dimly lighted by two candles" and warmed by "an enormous stove." The Temple household reveals accouterments indicative of wealth in this hall: the room is "carpeted" (575) and "furnished" with "a sideboard of mahogany groaning under the pile of silver plate," a "set of prodigious tables, made of the wild cherry," a "smaller table ... of .. maple," a "heavy, old-fashioned, brass-faced clock" of black walnut, an "enormous settee or sofa" that is nearly "twenty feet" long, numerous "chairs of wood," a

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277 "Fahrenheit's thermometer, in a mahogany case,'' and a "little ivory-mounted piano" (577). Two outer doors and "numerous side-doors"(575) lead off this hall. The doorways are "surmounted with pediments, that bore each a little pedestai in its center; on these pedestals were small busts in blacked plaster-of-Paris." One bust is of Horner, one is of Shakespeare, one is of Franklin, one is of Washington, and one is "nondescript" and may be either "Julius Caesar or Dr. Faustus." The sixth pedestal is ornamented with "an urn'' that, as Richard says, "intended to represent itself as holding the ashes of Dido." Dark "lead-colored English paper'' covers the walls; because of its improper application, Wolfe's patterned arm has been disconnected from his body and the weeping Britannia seems to lament the myriad "cruel amputations of his right arm." Two "small glass chandeliers" hang from the ceiling. Both Elizabeth and her father experience feelings of "melancholy'' (576) until these chandeliers are lighted. Then "the warmth and brilliancy of the apartment produced an effect that was not unlike enchantment" (577). In this commodious hall ten seated or standing human beings (Dr. Todd, Elizabeth, Monsieur Le Quoi, Marmaduke Temple, Major Hartmann, Mr. Grant, Remarkable Pettibone, Benjamin Pump, Edward Effingham, and a "young woman'' who is

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278 Elizabeth's maid) fit comfortably, allowing sufficient room for Richard to "pace" about the chamber. In 1837 when the Effinghams arrive in the house, nature is tame. As it is springtime, they feel no physical relief upon entrance into the hall. The hall has undergone superficial "improvements" (Home as Found; XI, 78). A "Gothic paper" has replaced that which showed "the severed arm of Wolfe" and "the urn that was thought to contain the ashes of Queen Dido had been broken." "Old Homer, too, had gone the way of all baked clay; Shakespeare himself had dissolyed into dust ... and of Washington and Franklin, even, indigenous as they were, there remained no vestiges." They are replaced by "a Shakespeare, and a Milton, and a Caesar, and a Dryden, and a Locke." Apparently, one pediment remains unoccupied. The Effinghams have removed the ostentatious load of silver from the hall; their social tastes are more developed and more understated than those habits of the pioneer forebearers. The only furnishings described as being in the hall in 1837 are the chairs and "the breakfast-table" (79) where the returned journeyers have their meal. Eve relates that Grace, Ann Sidley, Annette, and even she herself have "been weeping" with emotion. John Effingham then continues their conversation at the meal, noting that h e has consigned ''certain antediluvian paintings" to t h e

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279 fire and has left in the house only the few "respectab l e old things" (80) which he believed Eve could bear to look upon "with smiles." The superficial changes made in the hall, wallpaper removed and replaced and furnishings relocated or destroyed, do not change the basic room itself, its "size and comforts, if not elegance" (79). This "spacious and lofty room," with its half a dozen doors crowned with pediments, pedestals, and busts or an urn, is the same. The two exterior doors, if indeed not all the doors, are crafted in such a way as to display crosses as a part of their paneled construction. As Paul points out to Eve, "every paneled door that was constructed twenty years" (XIV, 99) or more ago bears this "symbol" (100). The doors of "la petit chateau ... Effingharnise" (VIII, 77), also called by John Effingham an "abortion" (IX, 67), permanently display the symbol of God. The hall offers permanent housings for display of articles. These objects which remain on display are busts. Cooper's use of these objects as symbols is deft. The 1793 busts are of Horner, Shakespeare, Franklin, Washington, and either "Julius Caesar or Dr. Faustus." This last one, in other words, has no significance save that the unrefined Richard Doolittle does not know enough to know the difference between a Classical Roman

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280 bust and that of a Teutonic necromancer. Doolittle is representative of many Cooperian frontiersmen, able to build a house, wrest a living from the wilderness, and father a nation, but unsophisticated. The other busts are intrinsically significant. Franklin and Washington are "indigenous"; their practically obligatory presence is a gesture to national spirit. Homer, the master of epic tales, is the blind man whose words tell of wanderings and wars. It would be convenient if Homer's bust and Natty could be compared, Natty's failing sigh t and simple but undying words, his wanderings and warfare somehow represented in the plaster-of-Paris bust--but they cannot. What is interesting is what Cooper includes in Home as Found, in which book Homer has long since "gone the way of all baked clay," along with William Shakespeare. In 1837 Shakespeare remains. His presence needs no justification in any text written by this author. After all, Shakespeare's words compose 54 of the 104 epigrams which these three texts contain as chapter headings. However, the other figures have been lost to time and new busts replace the old ones. Milton, Caesar, Dryden Locke: the cosmopolitan Effinghams feel no need for representations of but purely national character. Where the 1793 gathering contained two authors, the later group contains four Men of action have lost out to men

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I I I I I I I I I I I I I 281 of words. Milton, who justifies the ways of God to man, keeps company with the Bard. Carefully patterned and structured Nee-Classical verse has replaced Poor Richard. Political and economic theory has replaced the father of the nation, who crossed the Delaware and led the Sons of Liberty through the winter at Valley Forge. Caesar, correctly identified, is the only man of action on the wall. The sixth pedestal, apparently, is empty. In Homeward Bound no "great hall" is viewed or reviewed. A packet has no use for crystal chandeliers, settees, or pedestals. One might think the Montauk has even less use for busts, but one would be wrong. As a fact, "several hundred rude leaden busts of Napoleon" are on board (XXIV, 646). When Paul and Eve are forced to flee the craft, Paul stows "four or five of these busts" in their small boat "as a ballast." A little later, the busy seamen, without proper ammunition and needing to attack the Arabs and retake the Montauk, seize on Paul's "ballast." "A bust of Napoleon was cut up, and the pieces of lead were beaten as nearly round as possible, so as to form a dozen of leaden balls, and a quantity of slugs" (XXV, 657). After the battle, Mr. Monday's grievous wound is discussed. Captain Truck, speaking of Monday's condition, notes rather tangentially, "Bonaparte himself has been obliged to give up the ghost" (XXVII, 668). When Monday is buried

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282 at sea, it is "with the forms that had been observed the previous night at the burial of the seaman," Tom Smith (XXXI, 692). At that funeral, the mate observes, "I have lashed one of Napoleon's busts to the fine fellow's feet, and he'll not fetch up until he's snugly anchored on the bottom" (XXVIII, 675). Within Homeward Bound, the busts of Bonaparte are seen to have value for the living only insofar as they can be used: for ballast, ammunition, or as a lead weight for disposal of the dead. Napoleon's representation is first transported, then broken, then dropped straight to "the bottom." As Cooper said of the man in Precaution, his "star sunk"; as Cooper shows in Homeward Bound the man's effigy sinks, lashed securely to the feet of a corpse. The use that can be made of Napoleon is apparently confined to Old World shores; no mention is made of Bonaparte's "several hundred" lead busts after the Montauk fairly departs the African coast. But mention is made of the man himself in America. On Eve's first outing upon the Otsego, and not long after Paul has pointed out the "symbolic" crosses on the doors, the commodore turns the conversation to the "sogdollager," a finned "patriarch" the commodore has been almost catching for "thirty years" (Home as Found; 27 XIV, 102). At the most recent "near catch" the commodore "sat and conversed for near two minutes" with

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283 the fish. Eve asks what the fish said. The commodore admits it is difficult to understand what animals say, but he relates that "the Leather-stocking used to talk for hours at a time with the animals." He also sets down "Washington and Bumppo as the two only really great men" of his time. Paul queries,"'What do you think of Bonaparte?'" The old American fisherman rejoins, "'Bonaparte had some strong points about him. . But he could have been nothing to the Leather-stocking in the woods!'" Immediately after he finishes speaking, John Effingham bids him farewell because the Effingham party must leave: "the ladies wish to hear the echoes" ( 10 3) The "echoes" that allusions reflect upon literature differ from the echoes cast in real life. In the physical world, echoes resonate in empty spaces, and no space is emptier than the sixth pedestal in Cooper's "literal" hall, the curiously unfilled spot where once "the ashes of Queen Dido" had been supposed to be held. This urn, mentioned as gone in Home as Found and as present in The Pioneers, is the one object specifically noted by Cooper in both the "Introduction" to this latter work and in his letter to Weld. Of course, Cooper himself knew early in his life that the real "ashes of Dido" were not kept in a pot in Otsego Hall. He is careful to make even Hiram Doolittle speak of the

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284 veracity of the urn's contents in ambiguous terms. The Effinghams are entirely urnless, but they would know the impossibility of such remains having been carried thousands of miles and hundreds of years to the shore of the Glimmerglass. Nobody in the family believes or cares that "Dido's ashes" were once supposed to be in Templeton. That people used to have such a notion is of passing interest to the narrator, for the phenomenon illuminates the previously credulous and uneducated state of American ancestors. What is of real interest is that the author leaves the space empty. The other five pedestals are not; they are refilled when their "busts" crumble or are discarded. Five men's figures fill the prepared places; the solitary woman's spot throws back echoes from its void. The "mother's place" is empty, too, in all these narratives. Eve and Paul and Grace, and Elizabeth Temple and Louisa Grant and Edward Oliver Effingham, have all been without mothers for many years. At least a score of the men, and all of the major characters, in these works are unmarried for most or all of their 28 narratives. Many of the mature men grieve for their dead wives; all of the younger men appear to be looking for suitable wives; both the older and the younger well educated men seem to think of their "females" with reverential respect. The men seem to value the females

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285 so highly as nearly to elevate the sex itself to mythic or legendary heights. Male figures can be replaced as time passes; females, once lost, can only be missed. I f the female is not yet found the young man's need for her seems to be a troublesome void that wants filling Younger heroes act to secure heroines; old heroes mourn their loss. Paul mourns. He grieves for the loss of his mother's "miniature." This small portrait of the mother whose love he lost as an infant is the tangible artifact of the "female-lost" that doubles with Dido's missing ashes and urn. When Mr. Powis, "a bachelor to his dying day" (Home as Found; XXIII, 176), took Paul to raise, no new mother replaced the lost one. John Effingham has no wife to replace, however tardily, Paul's "lost" mother. When Paul sees "a miniature" among John's effects, he mistakes it for his own lost portrait. John's miniature is not Paul's lost portrait, but it is a representation of the same woman. Although the "real" history of the orphan must be pieced together from the two accounts given by different characters, the "second" miniature of Paul's mother/John's wife provides the "ocular proof" of Paul's parentage and John's progeny: John is Paul's father because Paul's mother was John's wife. Toward the end of Homeward Bound Paul "rea l l y seemed sad" (XXIX, 679) when he told his traveling

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286 companions aboard the Montauk about the loss of "a miniature that ... is of inestimable value .. the ship itself could scarcely be of more account--certainly not as much prized." The miniature is "of a female under twenty" ( 6 80) Paul does not identify whose likeness he has lost "though all observed the emotion with which Paul spoke of it, and all secretly wondered of whom it could be." Eve, like the others, has never "seen the miniature"; unlike the others, Eve's emotions are "painful and humiliating" to her when Paul evinces such affection for the young woman's lost likeness. She is jealous. The conversation continues, Eve's father hoping his child had not been robbed of the miniature "of her mother which it would have given him deep pain to discover was lost, though John Effingham, unknown to him, possessed a copy." Painted likenesses give way to three dimensional representations as symbols for twenty-five chapters of narration. Then, Paul mentions to Eve that his mother was very beautiful: "I have her picture, which sufficiently proves [her beauty]; had, I ought rather to say, for it was her miniature of which I was robbed by the Arabs, as you may remember, and I have not seen it since" (Horne as Found; XXIII, 175). He continues the conversation and declares his love for her. The Effinghams accept his proposal of marriage. Even then,

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287 the full story of Paul's history is unknown and his "real" name is not yet determined. Some little time later, Paul and John Effingham retire to the latter's room to examine for a second time the voluminous "papers" which the dying Mr. Monday had consigned to John's care. John asks Paul "to open the dressing-case" (XXVI, 197) where the papers are kept. Paul sees there a miniature which he mistakenly believes to be of Eve. Actually, it is the "unknown" copy of her mother. Paul then, attempting to replace the picture where he assumes it must belong, in the uppermost compartment of the "six or seven" little drawers before him, does not find the "empty case" he had expected. "Instead ... another miniature met his eye. The exclamation that ... escaped the young man was one of delight and surprise." Paul exclaims, "'This is the miniature I lost in the Montauk ... of my own mother!'" When John objects that "there must be some mistake," Paul responds,"'It is her miniature--the miniature that was transmitted to me from those who had charge of my childhood. I cannot be mistaken'" (198). John groans and ejaculates,"'No--no--'tis impossible! ... This picture is mine.'" The "surprised and disappointed" Paul must finally agree that the portrait he owned had no "initials of two names interwoven with hair" as does this portrait. Still, he insists that he

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288 believes "that sweet and pensive countenance to b e th e face of my own beloved mother, and of no one else." During the doubtful and uncomfortable pause succeeding this dialogue, Paul picks up one of Monday's old letters which contains a sentence relating an experience that Paul remembers having had as a child. This "experience" is the penultimate puzzle piece needed to trace Paul Blunt/Powis/Assheton/Effingham's history. Only a few moments after Paul reads the sentence aloud, John knows that Paul is his son. The pivotal sentence from the letter is: "I have taken the child with me to get the picture from the jeweler who has mended the ring, and the little urchin knew it at a glance." Thus, a young man's loss of one picture and a mature man's possession of a doubling picture link the father to the son throug h recorded history of a picture. At the very end of the book, Paul, "in search of his young bride" (XXIX, 222), enters the library where Eve is writing and weeping from happiness to tell her his wonderful news. His father, Paul says, "has just made me a present which is second only to the greater gift I received from your own excellent parent, yesterday, at the altar. See ... this lovely image of yourself .... And here is the miniature of my poor mother, also, to supply the place of the one carried away by the Arabs" (223). With a new picture to suppl y I I

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289 the place of the old picture and an adored young Effingham wife to fill the niche of absent "womanhood" in the Wigwam, all of Paul's emotional voids are finall y filled. But Cooper's were not, in fiction or in life. The man Cooper, returning from an extended European sojourn, found his beloved homeland as surely vanished as was Dido's urn or the miniature stolen by savages. The echoes which resound within the man gave him pain. The artist Cooper found out that a Glimmerglass without a Leatherstocking to fill its shores was a space too filled with echoes to be borne. The empty space where Dido's ashes were has as its complementary double the echoing emptiness where once had been Natty. At no long distance from the "eloquent 'Silent Pine'" (Home as Found; XIV, 104) which Eve and Paul and others view from their canoes on their first outing from the Wigwam lie the "garrulous rocks" whose "perfect and accurate echo" John Effingham describes as "a little communion with the spirit of the Leather stocking." The "mocking" echoes are so minutely replicatory that they surpass the very best European echoes, "the celebrated echoes of the Rhine." If the party were to go back from the rocks half a mile, says John, a bugled melody would return in "entire passages . . The interval between the sound and the echo,

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290 too, would be distinct, and would give time for an undivided attention ... These rocks are most aptly named; and if the spirit of Leatherstocking has any concern with the matter, he is a mocking spirit" (105 ) The echoing rocks of the Glimmerglass are named the "speaking rocks." They speak of things past. If the auditor gets "back" far enough, he can reach a point of "undivided attention" on the sound the very rocks speak. On that lovely afternoon, by previous arrangement, 29 a large gun has been prepared and is being tended. Three shots are fired. The reverberations issued and "reissued, and rolled along the range, from cave to cave, and cliff to cliff, and wood to wood, until they were lost, like distant thunder, two or three leagues to the northward. The ... western hills actually echoing the echoes of the eastern mountains, like the dying strains of some falling music." The sounds the Glimmerglass rocks make in 1837 are "dying strains of some falling music." Too much has happened to America by 1837 for the sounds to be anything but "echoes of echoes." In 1837 it is in Cooper's future for him to go further "back" to hear the first explosive shot from Killdeer, to give undivided attention to the original sound. Antedating the lost miniature and the shattered urn, the undefiled trees and rocks call to the author with an unechoing voice,

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291 impelling him on a personal quest. Theirs are the words of truth, those cryptic and puzzling words of nature which, in 1837, remained to be/had already been spoken. Notes 1. The announcement was made in A Letter to His Countrymen in 1834. 2. Many critics have noted the importance of these two volumes. None has approached the works with any greater sensitivity than Leland s. Person, Jr. Two fine articles by this author are "Cooper's The Pioneers and Leatherstocking's Historical Function,"The Emerson Society Quarterly 25 (1979): 1-10 and "Home as Found and the Leatherstocking Ser.i,es," The Emerson Society Quarterly 27 (1981): 170-180. In these allied articles, Person treats matters related to the issues examined in this paper. He notes Cooper's doubling technique, and offers some examples of doubling as found in The Pioneers and other Leatherstocking works. He also finds Home as Found to be a "pivotal work'' (170) in his 1981 article. Of the numerous other treatments which have been offered, a few of interest are: Jays. Paul, "Home as Cherished: The Theme of Family in Fenimore Cooper," Studies in the Novel, 5.1 (1973): 39-51; Eric J. Sundquis~ "Incest and Imitation in Cooper's Home as Found," Nineteenth Century Fiction 32 (1977) :261-284); Joys. Kasson, "Templeton Revisited: Social Criticism in The Pioneers and Home as Found," Studies in the Novel 9.1 (1977): 54-64T';""'andMary Suzanne Schriber:-"Toward Daisy Miller: Cooper's Idea of 'The American Girl'" Studies in the Novel, 13.3 (1981): 237-249). 3. Beard's Letters; III, 269. The letter to Bentley is dated July 6, 1837. 4. The statement was made in an April 1842 letter to Horatio Hastings Weld in a discussion of the legal ramifications of Cooper's libel suits following the publication of these works. (Beard's Letters; IV, 2 6 9. ) 5. His three European novels of the 1830's, The Bravo (1831), The Heidenmauer (1832), and The Headsman (1833) treat issues and conflicts that are~ot American. Nevertheless, Cooper's focus on his art form

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292 as vehicle for social commentary is evident as a growing thrust in these works. While his earlier novels had contained polemical passages, it is in these three works ? that Cooper first brings the notably "didactic" quality he increasingly includes to the fore. The "Horne" pair created an American uproar because of the national character of the interjections and not because of the simple use of such interjections and positions. The issue was "what," not "how." 6. Beard's Letters; III, 273. 7. Arvid Shulenberger places the pair in Cooper's second period, his decade of "thesis-novels" (39). Describing Cooper as being in his "Critic and Cosmopolitan" stage, Shulenberger believes that Cooper's "work of the period can be viewed as an unfortunate divagation from his major career as a novelist"; however, he notes that some critics "have also seen ... it his greatest period of social criticism" (39). 8. Just as Cooper's "real life" problem with the Three-Mile Point Controversy gave animation to Homeward Bound and Home as Found, so did the Anti-Rent Wars give rise to the "Littlepage Manuscripts." See also Ned Myers; or,~ Life before the Mast (1843). 9. This group of works contains nine American and eight European settings. In contrast, Cooper's previous ten works have scenes American in eight volumes, and locales British in two, Precaution and The Pilot. The first novel, Precaution, is a singular and atypical Cooperian work; it was his "apprentice text." The Pilot is prima facie an "American" work despite its scene. 10. Ernest E. Leisy, The American Historical Novel (Norman, Oklahoma: The University of Oklahoma Press, 1950), notes that Cooper uses the basic action which structured The~ for his "over-all plot pattern" (95) in The Pilot. Leisy's conclusion points to the identical function of house and ship as "safe home places." 11. While evaluations might differ, The Sea Lions (1849) may well be Cooper's most doubly complex and unremittingly twinned text. 12. Another pair of fires, both in Templeton, appear in The Pioneers to destroy Natty's home and to threaten the main characters on Mount Vision. Settlers' fires are usually injurious; society's fires are not as

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293 uncontrollable. Fortunately, American settlers, s u ch as Major "Fire-Eater" Effingham, are hardy enough, even in their extreme old age, to escape fatal in j ury from blazes that would almost surely tax the strength and survival skills of later generations of Americans. 13. According to Person, Natty is described as being like a "shaft of oak (VII, 291)" in The Prairie. See "Home as Found and the Leatherstocking Series," 170. 14. From a February, 1842 letter to Weld in Beard's Letters; IV, 238. 15. Person calls Home as Found Cooper's "gateway to myth" and notes that~the text "Natty's 'spirit' seemed to lead in two directions (forward into the future, backward into the past)" (176). Person finds Natty's "mythic status" creating a "schizoid conditionlooking both ways" (178) which causes the work to degenerate into a "puerile fantasy" of pure wish fulfillment. Person states: "Cooper resorts to the temporal and spatial discontinuity of The Deerslayer ... to [create] a never-never land" (170). While some of Person's observations are valid, he has entirely overlooked Cooper's habitual use of doubling to explain both the "temporal and spatial discontinuity'' and the narrative value of the return to home doubling which gives the text such an amplified power. 16. As a "matter of interest," symbolism is itsel f a valid area of examination. In a discussion of another author, Derek S. Brewer, "The Lord of the Rings as Romance," in J. R. R. Toikien":""sdiolar and Storyteller, ea. MarySalu and Robert T. Farrell (Ithaca: The Cornell University Press, 1979) 249-264, observes, "The claim for [the text] is simply that it constitutes a fiction which, with whatever weaknesses and shortcomings, has symbolic power" (255). 17. Henry Nash Smith, Virgin Land: The American West as Symbol and Myth (Cambridge: Harvard Universi ty Press, 1950) 74. 18. R. W. B. Lewis The American Adam (Chica g o: University of Chicago PresS:-1955) 98 and 104. 19. Marius Bewley, The Eccentric Des i gn (N ew Yo r k : Columbia University Press, 1959) 9. 20. Donald Davie, The Heyday of S i r Wa lt er Sco tt (London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1961) 123.

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294 21. George Dekker, James Fenimore Coo p er: Th e American Scott (New York: Barnes & Noble, 1967 ) 2 5 8 22. Richard Slotkin, Regeneration Through Vi olence (Middleton, Connecticut: Wesleyan Universit y Press, 1973) 515. 23. H. Daniel Peck, A World _ey Itself: T h e Pastoral Moment in Cooper's Fiction (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1977) 12. 24. Beard's Letters; IV, 258. 25. Beard's Letters; IV, 260. 26. Beard's, Letters; IV, 258. 27. Doubling with Home as Pound's "sogdollager" is Natty's "fish of unusual size," (The Pioneers; XXI V 684) of "great size" (685) which he spears from the lake. Natty's "strike" of this fish, of course, is t h e moderate and doubling fishing catch that highlights the settlers' "wasty ways'' (683) in netting "the choicest gifts of Providence" excessively (XXIII, 680). 28. The unmarried or widowed men include : Major "Fire-Eater" Effingham, Chingachgook, Natty Bumppo Judge Marmaduke Temple, Rev. Mr. Grant, Frederick Hartmann, Le Quoi, Ben Stubbs, Billy Kirby, Hiram Doolittle; Edward Effingham, John Effingham, Captain Truck, Steadfast Dodge, Captain Charles Duc i e, Henr y Sanden; Aristabulus Bragg, Tom Howel, Mr. Wenham, and the commodore. Edward Oliver Effingham, Sir George Templemore, and Paul Effingham marry only at the end o f their respective narratives. 29. The "gun," actually a piece "of field artillery" (105), is merely kept for ceremonia l purposes. Templeton of 1837 is a secure and c ivi li z ed place. Templeton of 1793 also has a "relic," a "miniature cannon," which is "no despicable gun for salute" (The Pioneers; XXII, 672). It is used to slaughter excessive numbers of pigeons. Natty, in a pointed doubling action, shoots one "pigeon in t h e w ing ... with a single ball" (674) and depar t s th e scene of slaughter. In 1740, in The Deerslayer, N a tty w ill b e given his gun, Killdeer, by Judith H utter. H e immediatel y shoots: first, a duck is s h o t th r ou g h it s breast" ( XX V 236); second, another d uc k h as it s h ea d severed "from its neck" with a s i ngle shot ; and thi r d an eagle which has hungry young n ear by i s ki l l ed as it

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295 soars "higher and higher" (237) overhead. Soon, N att y will use Killdeer to kill Indian foes, the Templeton area in 1740 having no need for purely ornamental guns as long as "real" dangers abound.

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CHAPTER SEVEN THE OAK OPENINGS "We have traveled a long path to get here." The Oak Openings (XXII, 356 ) An examination of the allusive action in Lionel Lincoln reveals one of the reasons this "early" te x t i s not a successful production. A study of the doubled actions, characters, settings, and symbols in the Home duo gives insights into both the sophistication of Cooper's "middle" works and into the artistic consciousness of their creator. A discussion of t h e action, the allusions, and the patterning of one of Cooper's "late" romances, The Oak Openings (1848), illuminates this sadly neglected text as well. In this work, Cooper's talents were at their full flower; the romantic adventure plot is vintage Cooper. When intelligently examined, The Oak Openings is seen to be a major narrative in the canon, one which merits 1 reading despite its current neglect. It can also support rereading and cl o se st udy, fo r it is a well-crafted work by a major Am er i can a uth or. It is a fine text to use as an examp l e of ho w th e 296

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297 "action approach" can illuminate a work. Further, The Oak Openings contains Cooper's most fully developed statement of the role of literary artist in society. Because it integrates this theme so naturally into the narrative, th~ presence of Cooper's "last words" on the subject has been overlooked for more than one hundred years. The Oak Openings illustrates Cooper's mastery as an author and his careful attention to and concern with such aspects of his craft as the reliance upon both explicitly stated and implicitly implied allusions, the well conceived and developed use of significant symbols, and the deft manipulation of story components in a habitually doubled manner. The text also reveals that Cooper's use of action--action-qua-action--functions meaningfully, both as a mimetic component of the world he crafts and as a means of rendering that world intelligible. Realistically, American aboriginal tribes spend much of their time moving about. War parties and hunters travel. So, too, journey settlers, frontier traders, missionaries, and mercenary or regular soldiers. Wives and dependent women accompany their peripatetic husbands, fathers, brothers, uncles, or guardians. Bee-hunters locate hives. Insects gather. It is fully realistic for the characters in The Oak

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298 Openings to engage in the actions they do, and a v ast majority of their actions are realistically rendered. The chained and linked segments of this "frontier adventure" follow logically and chain or layer believably. From the time Ben learns the "astounding news" (II, 41) that Mackinaw has fallen to the British and that Indian problems are sure to result until the whites safely find "all the south shore of Lake Erie in possession of the Americans" (XXIX, 488), the action is directed toward attainment of safety. The action is mostly journey type action. It is on the one hand, a return to home (i.e. : American go verned land) and on the other hand a journey of escape (from Indian controlled territories). Occurring almost entirely in the familiar "neutral ground" of the American frontier, The Oak Openings melds the self-definition aspects of a return to home with the series of repeated acts of escape which, as has earlier been discussed, typify this journey type. The unifying journey action is layered, throughout, with actions of more immediate import and shorter duration taken so as to attempt to escape the blocking mechanisms which trouble the characters. The chained actions, moving characters out from and returning them back to the doubled "core locations," which Cooper carefully creates and subsequently

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299 destroys or renders unsafe, increase the immediate tension of the narrative. Chapter I sets the scene and peoples it wit h two savages and two whites. While the American countryside is "rolling undulating" (10) and the nearby Kalamazoo "flows" (11), Cooper's "actors in [the narrative's] opening scene .. 2 appear on a stage" (10) without movement. Four men "were there" (1 1) Cooper states. "At the moment when we desire to present this group to the imagination of the reader, three o f its number were grave and silent observers of the movements of the fourth" (12). As "the spectators took their seats" (17) on a nearby oak stump to watc h Ben's "preliminary arrangements" (17), Ben moves "stealthily" (18) to catch a bee. The tale opens wit h a stalk, a capture (18), and an escape (20), as three me n watch another man watch a bee. Ben soon moves, a brief journey, "to a point fully a hundred rods distant from his first position" (22) so as to "angle" for the location of the hive. Chapter II opens with the m en moving toward the location of the hi v e a d i stance o f "about half a mile" (24) and with Ben, after employing his "small spyglass," which he uses to such good effec t in the tale, discovering, after "furt h er searc h (2 5 ) the proper tree. Gershom ("Wh i skey Centre" ) fe ll s it (26). Because the day is "too far advanced" t o co ll ec t

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--------------------------300 the honey before nightfall, Ben offers "the h ospita l i ti es of his own cabin" (27) to these chance met strangers, and the quartet travels to the nearby cabin to sup, converse, and sleep. When they have arrived, Cooper has assembled them in his first "safe home place" whence Ben has earlier gone out and to which he returns with the others. The following morning is spent in conversation, breakfasting, and the separate departures of the two Indians. "As Gershom manifested no intention to quit the place" (III, 50), Ben offers part of the cache of honey to Gershom if Whiskey Centre will help transport it. The two whites journey away from Castle Meal by canoe, kill or frighten away the bears grouped at the fallen hive (57), kindle a fire to incinerate or smoke out the insects, gather the honey into kegs (IV, 58 ) and return to the chiante. They eat and sleep ( 60 ) Ben, having decided to leave his shanty because of the potential Indian problem, spends the next day in "preparations for a change" (61). As part of this undertaking, the two men journey some three miles into the woods to pick up a deer carcass, and, on the way, discover the Chippewa they had supped with only two da y s previously, dead beneath a tree (63 ) Suddenly "deep ly impressed with the necessity ... of their speed y removal" (64) from the region, they l ea v e the area

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301 rapidly in canoes (66). At Gershom's suggestion, they move toward the shanty where wait his wife and sister, Margery, also known as Blossom. "The canoe did not reach the [shanty] until near evening of the third day of its navigation. It was not so much the distance, though that was considerable, as it was the obstacles that lay in their way, which brought the travellers to the end of their journey at so late a period" (V, 74). Ben and Margery meet and roll Gershom's two whiskey barrels off a cliff; almost immediately thereafter, Indians are spied approaching Whiskey Centre ( 85). The whites quickly "hide . all effects in the woods" (86) and move to their canoes, secreted in the "tall aquatic . wild rice" ( 85 ) nearby. Ben climbs a tree and uses his spy glass to observe the movement of the Indians as they occupy the shanty. When the Indians enter the dwelling, Cooper effectively renders useless his second "safe place," forcing the whites to stay with their canoes. Their "home" is a moving craft for Chapters VI-XIII. For these chapters numerous departures from and returns to and several arrivals at and disembarkations from these canoes form linking action. Ben "visits" the Indians and escapes, after his whiskey spring divination; he frees the captive, Pigeonswing, and the five move their

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302 canoes to a more secure location; Scalping P eter M r. Amen, and Corporal Flint arrive and Peter depar t s f or a consultation with the enemy Indian group wh i c h subsequently departs the area; and the whites secure the Gershom's secreted personal effects and load the items into the canoes. It is more than one hundred pages later when the chained action ends, and the "adventurers commenced this new journey" (XIII, 210) toward Ben s chiante, Castle Meal. This 'return to home," up the Kalamazoo, carries the actors more deeply in t o t h e "neutral" area where dangers are greater; however, during the trek, Peter grows fond of Margery and begins his conversion to Christianity. "It was only on the eleventh day ... that the canoes came to ... Castle Meal" (XV, 219). Th i s journey, doubling with and reversing t h e direct i on of the first lengthy action segment, is succeeded by a wee k "of very active labor" (XIV, 219) by all the characte r s as the chiante is enlarged and fortified. All of Chapter XIV delineates work movement, as meals are cooked, game hunted, trees felled, logs transported, roofs barked, windows shuttered, trenches dug, solitar y walks taken, knitting needled, sewing st i tc h ed, a x es flourished, palisades sharpened, and needles p li ed On Sunday they rest. All of Chapter XV cont i nues th e wor k with trench filling, earth poundi n g, water carr ying,

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30 3 loop cutting, platform raising, provision transpor tin g game and fish securing, spinning, conversing, an d watchful waiting. Throughout these two chapters, t h e action chains, moving around Castle Meal. In Chapter XVI, Cooper begins an interrupted chained section of action when Ben, Flint, and Hive move "from the 'garrison' of Castle Meal'' (254) at night. They follow Hive as he "trails" and arrive at the "Council of the Bottom Land" (261) where they hide in the woods to observe the Indian meeting. To the counci l come Peter and Amen. The council proceeds for the full chapter, until the arrival of an Indian runner. All of Chapter XVII describes the council, focusing main l y upon Amen s specious proselytizing that the Indians are "really" Jews. The stasis is broken in this rude Indian "safe place" when "a fine buck, with a pack of fift y wolves close after it" comes bounding into "that little piece of bottom land" (287). As Cooper describes it, "The headlong impetuosity of the chase and flight" quite unsettles Hive, who rushes forward into a "fierce combat" with a wolf. Ben, trying to control h i s an im a l is discovered, "and the parties stood gazing at each other, equally taken by surprise, and equally at a loss to know what to do next" (288). After this awk w ard interruption, the council recommences and t h e w hit es

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304 depart, having gathered "that their presence was no longer desirable" (295). They return to the chiante. Chapters XIX, XX, and part of XXI are devoted to a second "bee linin'" the following day. This time Ben mixes suitable mummeries with his skill to impress the credulous savages with his supernatural acumen. Again, as during the first hive taking, bears are fought, killed, and driven off. After the killing of the bears and the finding of the honey, the Indians summarily determine to hold another council. The whites, inclu9ing Ben, Margery, Flint, and Amen, turn toward Castle Meal. Before they arrive, Parson Amen marries the lovers in front of an alter "of nature's own erecting ... in the venerable Oak Openings" (XXI, 354355). In Chapter XXII Cooper returns to the Indian council, where various aboriginal opinions are offered, but no action occurs. Chapter XXIII tells of the following day and includes several arrivals at and departures from Castle Meal. Most importantly, Peter arrives to tell Ben of the dangers the whites are in from the Indians, urging Ben and his new wife to depart. Peter invites Amen and Flint to "go . to see some more chief" ( XXIV, 390 ) leading the two to their deaths. Peter's conversion begins in earnest at the missionary's death; Peter is "profoundly struck" ( 397) and finds his "soul ...

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305 shaken" (405). Flint's death occupies a dozen pages of the next chapter before the Indians collect at Castle Meal (420). However, the unopposed savages, firing t h e structure with burning arrows, discover the whites to have escaped. When Cooper ignites Chateau au Miel, allowing the "blazing furnace" (422) to burn to ashes, the characters are forced to journey again since they are too few to offer the savage hordes a fight. For the next four chapters, Chapters XXVI-XXIX, the Bodens and the Warings, and occasional friendly Indians, journey the several hundred miles to safety within American controlled lands. This nicely crafted layered journey action contains chases, stalks, and hunts, and continues for about two weeks in the characters' lives. The myriad hostile Indians, the difficulty of the terrain, and the vagaries of the weather present various blocking mechanisms which the whites must overcome in their journey. The arrival is not given, Cooper instead leaving the hegira apparently open and the destinat i on not properly attained. "Once in Lake Erie and on the American side, our adventurers felt reasonably safe. Le Bourdon and his party found all the south shore ... in possession of the Americans .... Peter and Pigeonswing left their friends before they reached Presque Isle" (XXIX, 488).

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306 So, after initial establishment of the primary "safe place" (I-IV), Cooper offers the first extended journey, a matter of only a few pages. At journey's end, he almost immediately destroys the second "safe place," the dbubled chiante, forcing the characters to act from their canoes. For eight chapters they stay in or near to their craft; these vessels are moving "core locations" which offer the only safety the characters know. All their excursions away from the bark canoes are fraught with danger or the possibility of danger. Once the Indians leave the second chiante, the characters pick up their belongings and depart as well. The second journey, retracing the first and returning the characters to Ben's home, occupies only a few pages of narrative. Back at Chateau au Miel, the action chains for nearly 200 pages (XIV-XXV), or until the Indians burn the chiante. Chapters XXVI-XXIX develop layered journey action as the characters take to their canoes once again. The doubled actions and movements that chain around the doubled chiantes balance nicely with the doubled journeys to the two abodes. At the first hut, the characters destroy objects (whiskey barrels) and remove possessions: at the second, they create (fortif i cat i ons and a second chiante) and integrate possessions. Th e first journey, to Whiskey Centre, is ostensibl y a

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307 movement to succor the females; it is revealed to be actually a movement that ends with the females being in increased danger when the Indians arrive The second journey, back to Chateau au Miel, is ostensibly another journey of salvation; subsequently it develops that this movement is also a change for the worse, a relocation into an area where the danger is greater and the Indians more numerous. The last journey, away from the burning chiante, is not properly "closed" and appears to have no "double" within the narrative. Cooper does not, within the first twenty-nine chapters, reveal the outcome of this journey and so does not offer a way to evaluate if this action is actually valuable or not. It is only in the last chapter and with his own movement into the text that Cooper closes the white's journey of flight toward American lands. Thus, the third and unfinished journey in the tale itself pairs with the author's own, the doubling fourth. The Symbolic Openings "The game's afoot." The EY (VII, 485) Cooper's certain mastery of his craft is evident throughout The Oak Openings. He has recourse to nearly

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308 all of his habitual modes, crafting a text quintessentially Cooperian. All six action types are displayed; both action ordering techniques are used; examples of various journey types occur; and movement is pervasive. The recurring authorial voice offers polemical interjections, most frequently on the Mexican War, the American Congress, demagogues, and matters religious, and is, until the last, unique chapter, habitual. The characters are typical: predictable romantic hero and female, stereotypical rugged soldier and familiar dissipated wastrel accompanied by "bad" Indian, "good" Indian, secondary older female, and ridiculous parson. The characters are as mimetic as any usual cast. Cooper's view of fictive world as dramatic set is focused; his theme is well-integrated into the text and worked out doggedly. This work is Cooper's final characteristic statement, his last treatment of 3 the American Saga. It comes from the pen of an author who overlooks the "every-day experience of a life now fast verging toward threescore" (XXVI, 438), a life spent in the observation, recording, and creation of "every-day" experience quintessentially American. The level of Cooper's mastery is evident from the first sentence of the text. Before he sets the opening scene, in the "American for est . in the year 1812, and the season of the year the pleasant month of July

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309 in the then unpeopled forest of Michigan" ( 1 0 -1 1 ) Cooper offers two paragraphs lauding the "wisdom and power of God" as it is revealed through nature "in the acorn" (9). But his entry into the oak openings is not initially through examination of the acorn, but with recourse to an apparently gratuitous observation: "We have heard of those who fancied that they beheld a signal instance of the hand of the Creator in the celebrated cataract of Niagara." This is the first sentence of the text. The reader may wonder what is mention of Niagara Falls doing in a tale set on an elbow of the Kalamazoo River. The reader finds the answer thirty chapters later when Fenimore Cooper, entering the text as author/actor, moves the reader "about thirty six" years through time to "the present'': "Quitting our own quiet and secluded abode ... in this current year of 1848, we descended into the valley of the Mohawk, got into cars, and went flying by rails toward the setting sun ... reached Buffalo ... and turned aside to visit the cataract" (XXX, 489-490). Cooper, far from finding in himself a feeling of "disappointment" upon re-viewing the falls after "thirty-eight" years, discovers that his "expectations were much more than realized." He is "actually astonished at the character of sweetness ... of the scene." Nothing in the Falls' "wildness and

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grandeur to . 310 inspired terror, for everything appeared be filled with attraction and love" ( 490 ) Cooper's great cataract of love, of Christian lo v e, roars in the background of the entire narrative: Niagara Falls, the natural American embodiment of that loving force, symbolically frames the tale. The falls are not the only symbol Cooper uses effectively in The Oak Openings. The "openings" themselves are symbolic of all those pastoral settings so dear to Cooper. In such open spaces, illuminated by the bright light and uncluttered by human artifacts, can the Cooperian cast act out the actions of their lives, framed by the surrounding trees that bound the acting area. In some special clearings, chiantes are built to offer shelter and rest from labor. In other clearings, no habitations are needed, for the opening itself provides the safe place. All the clearings do have a potential for incursive dangers, just as do all of Cooper's acting grounds, for places are located in time and time brings change. Even when change is for the better, and it often is not, Cooper and his characters do not like the destruction of the static quality of safe place which time does bring. "Men are not fond of change" (The Crater; XIX, 156). Yet even if men and time change the setting, the openings are st i ll a representative of Cooper's New Eden, that place where

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311 worthy ("Christian") lovers, savage ("uneducated") natives, and resourceful ("active") settlers can meet and act. The symbolic place is filled with people who encounter objects which are literally no more than objects but which simultaneously suggest or mean something else, something that is of a universal significance. The universally suggestive objects prominently developed in The Oak Openings include crosses, fires, bees, and names-qua-names. The cross, as symbolic of the Christian faith and specifically as representing God's love for mankind revealed through Christ's suffering and corporeal death, is evident. Fire, used in The Oak Openings both as a symbol of domestic comforts and as representative of the destructive force of human evil and of natural power, is a potent and dual symbol. The "busy little bee" is yet another symbol admitting a dual interpretation. Bees, like ants or termites or any hive animal, represent the communal activity of social order. Such activity may be little more than mindless and frenetic movement. But unlike termites or ants, bees labor to produce a "sweet" product; their work creates beauty through the pollinating act and yields a generally valuable resource, honey. Each of these objects has another symbolic dimension which can only be discerned through 7

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312 examination of the item within the text. Hence, Cooper's crosses, fires, bees, and names both represent reality and explain it. The crosses in The Oak Openings are a symbol of man's usually well-intentioned misinterpretation of 4 God's truth. Parson Amen, that habitual misdisquisitor of God's word, is the living example of mankind's habitual mis-understanding of the truth. Amen is convinced that the American Indians are the "Lost children of the land of Judea" (XI, 184) because the Bible told him so. He "triumphantly" (185) produces "Genesis xlix and 14th" (184), "Gad, a troop shall 5 overcome him" (184) as his proof. At another place in the book, Crowsfeather tells an American parable, of sorts, to illustrate how people can misinterpret the truth before their very eyes. Once, on the prairies, I lost my way. There was snow, and glad was I to find tracks. I followed the tracks. But one traveller had passed. After walking an hour, two had passed. Another hour, and the three had passed. Then I saw the tracks were my own, and that I had been walking, as the squaws reason, round and round, but not going ahead. (XVII, 279) Amen misinterprets even God's own revealed word, the Bible, in such a way as too mis-see the truth: "He does not see what is before his eyes" (XXIII, 386). He has a false interpretation of the symbols of his faith.

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313 In just such a way do other men "not see" the truth of Christianity's greatest symbol, the cross. Peter, for example, wears around his neck "the image of that cross on which the Son of God, in his human character, suffered death" (XI, 179), but Peter wears this "ancient medal of the Jesuits as a political rather than a religious symbol" (179). He mistakes its real meaning. In the same way does the general population fail to see the crosses "found at this very hour in nearly every old paneled door in the country, even to the humblest dwelling of the descendants of the Puritans and Quakers" (179). Cooper, here in an explicatory footnote, refers to the standard construction of doors which, when the panels are removed, display crosses as their structural form. He continues, "Ignorance preserved the emblems." He notes "something amusing in finding these quiet little emblems ... in the very bedrooms ... of 'the saints'" (179). Even when the general population does perceive the crosses on their churches, many people "so confound their own names and denunciatory practices with the revealed truth, as to imagine that a standard so appropriate should ever be out of season and place. in the way of symbols" (XVI, 266). After Amen is killed and Peter converted, this symbol quite properly disappears from the narrative. Without Amen's "mis-reading" of God's revealed truth,

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314 Peter, who is never confused by any sign if h is m i nd i s not clouded by preconceived misconceptions or ignorance, can see the proper symbol for God. This s y mbo l is the Bible. "It is best that we should look for ourselves [i n the Bible], that we may find out" (XVII, 277). The Bible, like any symbol, may admit misinterpretation if the interpreter is misguided, but it is always a symbol of mighty power. Peter reveals an early misguided belief in the power of the text, a belief that by merely touching the tome he will somehow call down "the worst'' (283) upon himself. Peter reaches to touch the Bible for the first time in his life, and "never before had this extraordinary being made so heavy a draft on his courage and self-command, as in the performance of this simple act" (283). Unfortunately, this unconverted Indian can "look" in the book, but, as he says, "I do not see" (284). Poor illiterate Peter is never able to properly "see" the white man's printed word. But, fortunately for his soul, he can properly understand God's truth i f 6 he can hear it. Margery's oral communication with Peter, as muc h as Arnen's death and his blessing of his murderers, con v erts Peter. After Amen is dead, Peter finds himself wh il e "changed," unable to pray to God. It is after M arger y

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315 repeated to Peter the words of the Lord's prayer" (XXVIII, 464), that he kneels "repeating the prayer to Margery's slow leading" (464). Thirty-six years after his conversion, Peter still cannot read and he still retains his belief that the Bible is powerful, but, because the belief is tempered with right understanding, he knows that there is nothing to fear in the power of the word. Instead, as Peter's conversation with author/actor Cooper makes clear, "'Arth belong to God, and he send whom he like to live on it .... His blessed Son die for all color, and all color muss bow down at his holy name. Dat what dis good book say," showing a small pocket Bible, "and what dis good book say come from Great Spirit, himself." "You read the Holy Scriptures, then--you are an educated Indian?" "No; can't read at all. Don't know how. Try hard, but too ole to begin. Got young eyes, however, to help me," he added ... as he turned to [Margery's granddaughter]. "She read good book for old Injin when he want her; and ... her mudder or her gran'mudder read for him. Fuss begin wid gran'mudder; now get down to gran'da'ghter. But good book all de same, let who will read it." (XXX, 495) The revealed words of scripture, either heard or read, can convey truth to the properly enlightened. It is no mistake that Pigeonswing has earlier offered a letter as his credentials or that Ben accepted the written word as "proof" of the Indian's true affiliation. To Pigeonswing's query, "--'dat tell trut'--b'lieve him?'" Ben immediately responds, "'I put faith in all you say, Chippewa. That is an officer's

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316 letter'" (III, 47). Truth is to be found in the authoritatively inscribed word, and not in the easily misinterpretable symbol; but such truth can only be discerned by the properly enlightened rational mind. While printed words may convey a singular truth, physical symbols encourage multiple meanings. A symbol that Cooper utilizes to good effect in many of his texts is fire. The symbol is, of necessity, ambiguously two sided. Early man, like the wild animals of the present, feared and fled the destructive power of fire. However, once early man has harnessed the force, he enjoyed a new level of comfort and power to control his environment. Thus, one supposes, came into being the dual nature of 7 the Promethean myth. That fire had a strong claim on Cooper's imagination is easily shown. As early as 1821, in The .Ey, Cooper evinces an ambiguous affinity for it, incinerating both Harvey Birch's cabin and the Wharton's home. In his next tale, The Pioneers, Natty's home burns and Cooper uses the forest-fire on Mt. Vision to climax the main action. Fire has what appears to be a personally riveting fascination for this author. In a footnote in The Pioneers Cooper states, The writer ... once witnesses a fire in another part of New York that compelled a man to desert his wagon and horses in the highway, and in which the latter were destroyed .... The fires

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317 in the American forests frequently rage ... Houses, barns, and fences are quite commonly swept away. (XXXVIII; 767) Cooper continues to utilize fires until the end of his 8 career. As in Cooper's earlier works, in The Oak Openings fire is both frightening and comforting. It stands for the comforts of home: "It is always respectable to defend the fireside, and the land of one's nativity" (XIII, 215), Cooper asserts. Fire lights the tobacco that fills after-dinner briers or Indian council pipes. Fire is lit to "cook venison" (XII, 200); indeed, fire is employed to prepare every meal unless time presses or the smoke from the fire is considered too dangerous to hazard in territory peopled with inimical aborigines. "Many is the camp that has been discovered by the smoke, which can be seen at a great distance; and it is a certain sign of the presence of man, when it ascends in threads, or such small columns as denote a domestic fire beneath" (XXVII, 452). The smoke a domestic fire produces can be dangerous; the light any fire casts can be dangerous as well. Because "the fire burned brightly in the hut, and the savages could be seen by its light" (XXVIII, 472), the fugitive whites gain knowledge of their enemies. Firelight can be used "as a beacon" (VII, 116) to show wayfarers their paths, but the light of a fire can also illuminate horrors that seem best

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318 left obscured. When Ben and Flint happen upon the midnight Indian council, a fire lights the scene. "The fire was by no means large, nor was it particularly bright; but sufficient to cast a dim light on the objects within reach of its rays" (XVI, 257). These "objects" are the painted bodies of nearly fifty Indian chiefs, bodies "resembling so many dark and stately spectres .... Nothing could have been more unearthly than the picture presented .. The scene was altogether much the most remarkable of any [Ben] had ever been in the way of witnessing" (258). When "some dry sticks" are thrown onto the fire, it, "blazing upward, cast a stronger light on a row of as terrifically looking countenances as ever gleamed on human forms" (259). Fire can give knowledge almost too terrific to be borne. Peter's face ordinarily wears "a thoughtful cast though at times it lighted up, as it might be with the heat of inward fires, like the crater giving out its 9 occasional flames" (XII, 192). Peter's face bears this "fiendish" expression at "those moments when the pent fires of the volcano, that ceaselessly raged within his bosom, were becoming difficult to suppress" (XIII, 217 ) Indeed, the Indians are well named "fiery devils" (XV 239) when the fire "rages" within (XVII, 280; XXII, 36 8)

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319 As Cooper makes clear, these raging internal fires are not peculiar to Indians. Peter had awakened fires that he could not quell [in the other Indians]. In this respect, he resembled most of those who, under the guise of reform, or revolution, in moments of doubt, set in motion a machine that is found impossible to control .... Such is often the case with even well-intentioned leaders, who constantly are made to feel how much easier it is to light a conflagration, than to stay its flames when raging. (XXV, 407-408 ) "Fiery" emotions, being "under fire" (XVIII, 298), having one's home "on fire ... in a bright blaze a blazing furnace" (XXV, 422)--fire would seem an evil force, symbolizing both terrifying natural destruction and terrific human hatreds. Yet, on the other hand, fire can cleanse and regenerate. Just as the warfare that was the result of the Indian's hatred forces the white settlers to their greatest efforts and, ultimately, leaves the fittest humans to possess the good American earth, so did the white man's burning religious fervor save the immortal souls of some Indians, Peter being one. The savages' fiery anger caused Amen to be murdered; the martyr's burning faith awed and began the conversion of Peter. And, just as people seem initially to burn with destructive fires of hatred that are ultimately seen to have been constructive, so does the physical fire on the plains of the oak openings actually produce beauty and

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320 life after apparent evil and death. In the lovely oak openings are found those glens "of singular beauty .. covered with verdure. The grasses are supposed to be owing to the fires" (I, 11). When Ben and Margery walk the land, the~ stride a "velvet-like covering" (17) which has been engendered by fire. "Fire had run over the whole region late that spring, and the grass was fresh, and sweet and short" (18). The openings prove that fire may ultimately lead to renewal; "the spot had been burnt so recently, as to leave the entire expanse covered with young grasses and flowers" (XIX, 309). Because of "the burning of the prairies" (310), grasses grow sweet, flowers bloom gaily, and life flourishes. Just as Cooper has recourse, throughout his tales, to the use of journey action as a metaphor for human existence, so does this author habitually use the dual symbolic aspects of fire as a simultaneously doubled metaphor. Like the beasts, unthinking human beings may mistakenly see only the destructive side of the Promethean gift. When forests blaze and homes ignite, the first reaction is fear. Because fear engenders hatred, men loath the power of flames. But, the very flames shed illumination even as they devour. By the light, rational beings can see. The wise man is enlightened, not terrified, by the fire. The wise man can reflect upon the future, can see past his momentary

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321 fear and hatred. He can consider the potentially beneficial result, the ultimate "truth" of the flames. Fire is Cooper's metaphor for human mentation. Fire functions as a metaphor for the mind. With time, the seeming fiery evil can be understood to produce ultimate good. Indian warfare leads to American unity; genocide leads to civilization; forest fires lead to flowers. "How often, in turning over the pages of history, do we find civilization, the arts, moral improvement, nay Christianity itself, following the bloody train left by the conqueror's car, and good pouring in upon a nation by avenues that at first were teeming only with the approaches of seeming evils!" (XXX, 496). With the proper perspective, a person can pierce the facade of apparent evil to recognize the hidden truth. A wise man, one, say, with perhaps "the everyday experience of a life now fast verging toward threescore" years, will not fail to see "the prodigies that come from above ... presented daily to [his] eyes." Such men will know not to "labor on subjects that are ... illusory" ("Preface," 5). These men know that "Good appears to arise out of evil, and the inscrutable ways of Providence are vindicated by results" (6), and perceive that "the knowledge of the Lord" (6) and "constant recollection of his unwavering rules" (7) will enable the wise observer to see truth.

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322 Animals check at "the sight of the fire for no wild beast will willingly encounter fire" (XV III, 288). Savage, unenlightened men burn with the interna l fires of irrational and uncontrollable anger. Wise men, such as the aged Peter, are illuminated from within with God's love, that shines forth from their faces to brighten the whole world. The fire can burn, but it can also engender. Just as Cooper's apparently superficial use of journey action and fires is actually revealed to be a complex and well-developed metaphoric use of journey-as life and fire-as-mentation, so does study of Cooper's The Oak Openings show that his use of symbols is cogent and effective. The crosses give way to the Bible and the fires transmute into flowers, another traditional representation of the human mind's coming to wisdom. A third symbol which reveals myriad levels of meaning in this text is the bee. The first words of Chapter I, even preceding Cooper's first sentence, are four lines from "Watts' Hymns for Children": How doth the little busy bee Improve each shining hour, And gather honey all the day, From every opening flower From the opening scene when "Buzzing Ben," the beekeeper, catches his bee and lines a hive, to t h e las t

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323 paragraphs, when the final recounted action in the text is a walk to look at the hives, bees fill The Oak Openings. Not one chapter passes without several references to the creatures, either directly or obliquely, via use of one of the hero's various names. Mimetic presentation of the insect compels an attention to the very active nature of the creature. Bees in the real world either work at pollen gathering or are seen in rapid motion as they fly out from and back to their hives. The movement is unremittingly chained action. Just like men, bees have a "safe home place" where a society is discernible. The individual works assiduously with the other bees to produce honey, 10 which substance feeds the community. The work the bees do is constructive labor: their gathering of pollen is the generative action that causes the fields to bloom with flowers. Cooper makes the compar~son of bees with men explicit. He has the Indians wonder, "Could the pale faces compel bees to reveal the secret of their hives, and was that encroaching race about to drive all the insects from the woods and seize their honey, as they drove the Indians before them and seized their lands?" (XIX, 313-314) The Indians identify themselves with the bees. Cooper gives to Ben the explicit comparison of man with bee.

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324 "There they are, hard at work .... Little do they think, as they undermine that comb [his bait], how near they are to the undermining of their own hive! But so it is with us all! When we think we are in the highest prosperity we may be nearest to a fall, and when we are poorest and humblest, we may be about to be exalted." (I, 19) When the whites shoot at the bears which are attacking a fallen hive, Cooper notes the bees "followed their retreating enemies in a body, making a mistake that sometimes happens to still more intelligent beings; that of attributing to themselves, and their own prowess, a success that had been gained by others" (III, 57). Another character, upon first sighting this hive, observes, "There is a lot on 'em there, too, and they seem to be comin' and gain' to the tree, like folks carryin' water to a fire" (54). While the Indians may view themselves as being like the bees, Cooper makes clear that it is the whites who are properly the human analogue of bees; the Indians are really more like the attacking and predatory bears who twice disrupt the bees' society and destroy the bees' home. When Ben "lines" and "angles" the second hi v e and the bears are again attacking the insects, the Indians who move forward to kill the bears wonder if the bees "have a faculty of thus arming one enemy against another?" (XX, 337). In just that way do t h e whites use the Indians throughout American history and Cooper's narratives, pitting Huron against Mohawk and "French"

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325 Indian against English settler. Like the "little busy bee," the busy settler creates a "home" in the wilderness. Both species "improve" nature, acting to fructify and to develop the natural potential of the land into an actual yield. As gatherers and hunters, the Indians and the bears only take from the land. It is true that some white settlers, such as the Thousandacres or the Bush entourage, are no better than the savages. But "proper" American settlers, those with Christian beliefs and the Protestant work ethic, work, 11 like the bee, to improve the environment. When Margery comes to Le Bourdon's chiante, Chateau au Miel (literally, "Castle of Honey" or "Honey House") the abode is, like some human hive, physically filled with honey. Margery, like a properly busy little bee, immediately begins her improvement of the environment. She is "accustomed to work, as, blessed be God! the American woman usually works; that is to say, within doors, and to render home neat, comfortable, and welcome" (XIV, 220). Margery displays the ability to use fire in its constructive, domestic manner: "the cooking was so much improved! Apart from cleanliness, the venison was found to be more savory; the cakes were lighter; and the pork less greasy" (221). Cooper, after an interjection excoriating certain national cuisines, writes: "Believing as we do, that no small portion of

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326 the elements of national character can be, and are, formed in the kitchen, the circumstance may appear to us of more moment than to some of our readers" (221). While Margery is busy with her "more" momentous kitchen work, the men are busy outdoors. In 1812, when the first 29 chapters are set, these many busy actions at the chiante prove ultimately to be futile; just as the bees' hives are destroyed, so is Chateau au Miel burned. Yet, by 1848, when Cooper moves himself into the concluding chapter, he views with great delight the improved scene. Ben and Margery and their friends and neighbors have been busy in the intervening thirty-five years. It is through the windows of a railroad car that the author views the West. The vegetation certainly surpassed that of even West New York, the trees alone excepted. The whole country was a wheat-field, and we now began to understand how America could feed the world. Our road lay among the "Openings" much of the way, and we found them undergoing the changes which are incident to the passage of civilized man. ( 494) Those who laid out this place ... had taste ... and ... the spot was easily to be recognized by the air of cultivation. (499) The next day ... we drew near to the celebrated prairie. And celebrated ... does this remarkable place deserve to be! We found all our expectations concerning it fully realized, and drove through the scene of abundance it presented with an admiration that was not entirely free from awe .... This plain .. is now entirely fenced and cultivated. (500)

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327 Across the plain move the laborers and their ingenious harvesting machine, gathering in and bagging "from twenty to thirty acres of heavy wheat, in the course of a single summer's day! Altogether it is a gigantic invention, weil adapted to meet the necessities of a gigantic country" (502). As several of the party take a walk, Ben, "still hale and hearty" (501) and now designated by the honorary title "the general" (498) directs Cooper's attention to the cultivated hives. Ben is "loud in praise of his buzzing .friends, for whom it was plain he still entertained a lively regard" (503). Ben, like the bees, for he is "still as often called 'General Bourdon,' as 'General Boden'" (497), has "improved" his environment All the workers have done so. The "busy working" has made the prairie a cornucopia which can "feed the world." As Buzzing Ben had once lived off the work of the insects, so now does the world live off his labors. As Cooper observes, quoting watts again, How skillfully it builds its cell, How neat it spreads the wax, And labors hard to store it well With the sweet food it makes. (II, 24) The cross, the fire, and the bee are conventiona l symbols that Cooper uses to render his world intelligible to the reader. They are also tang i ble and

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328 mimetic objects which his characters use, and misuse when misguided. In the fictive world of a Cooperian narrative, the actions of the characters are directed by the author to convey a didactic message. Cooper uses his characters to communicate Christian values. When the people err, their world corrects them. When they act rightly, they are rewarded, usually with homes, marriages, children, and wealth--they are given America itself, the New Eden. Ben and Margery inherit a "good earth." It is the one they made themselves, from their own busy works. Ultimately, their works are seen to have been worthwhile and right. Because this couple had the right intelligence and understanding, they did the right action and got the real reward. The real meaning of actions, of objects, and even of words and names is 12 one of Cooper's most basic concerns. Cooper's reliance upon names as integral aspects of his work is manifest throughout The Oak Openings and is 13 an aspect of all his fictions. This author who deliberately and at no small personal expense, changed his own adult name in 1826, adding and coming to be known as "Fenimore," after his mother's family name; who opined that "this business of names is a sort of science in itself" (The Crater; I, 5) and who "has compiled a long list of ... names from real life, which he may one day publish" (The Crater; I, 6); and all of whose

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329 early works offer birth mystery plots or tales in which incognito heroes function under aliases until the "real" name is revealed and the narrative can then close, was 14 clearly attuned to the importance of nomenclature. Indians, like Cooper, value names. They change their names as they attain certain life stages or achieve particular distinctions, and have traditionally placed great value on name-as-name. As Cooper notes "the chiefs saw a reasonable, if not very logical analogy, between a man's name and his mind; and to them it appeared a tolerably fair inference that a man should act up to his name .... In this it does not strike us that they argued very differently from civilized beings" (XXII, 265). The "analogy" between the name and the man breaks down all too often outside of the fictive world, but in Cooper's world the "reasonable" (albeit not "very logical") inference can be admitted, allowed, and illustrated as easily as can the director block an atypical, but revelatory, small piece of stage business. "Injin always give name that mean somet'ing'' (XIX, 320), one Indian says. Cooper, as his text makes abundantly clear, does the same. In extended explanations, and in brief footnotes, Cooper points toward both the "right" understanding of name and the importance of name-qua-name. "Tecumseh*," to whom Peter is briefly compared, is "a bold, restless and ingenious

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I I 330 warrior" (XII, 197), and Cooper places an asterisk with his first use of the name, noting, at the bottom of the page, "* A 'tiger stooping for his prey.'" This warrior's brother is "Elkswatawa,* or the Prophet," the asterisk indi~ating "* 'a door opened.'" (XII, 198). On the same page Cooper notes that the "common father, Pukeesheno*" of the two has a name which means "*'I light from fly'" and that their mother's name, "Meethetaske*", means"* 'A turtle laying her eggs in the sand.'" Pigeonswing, as he "was commonly called in his tribe, in consequence of the rapidity of his movement when employed as a runner, had a much more respectable name," Waubkenewh (III, 44). Bough of the Oak is a stalwart warrior, but not known for his sagacity. As he describes the oak, and thus himself, "The tree has branches ... and they are tough. Tough branches are good. The boughs of the oak will not bend. I am a bough of the oak. I do not like to bend." (XXII,365). Ungque is the name of another Indian. ~He went by the significant appellation of 'The Weasel,' a sobriquet that had been bestowed on him for some supposed resemblance to the little pilfering, prowling quadruped" ( XXI, 342) That the bestowed names fit the characters is manifest, but that is not ultimately the point. What is the point is that Cooper is so manifestly concerned with

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331 directing the readers' attention toward the importance of name-qua-name and the importance of pointing the "right" meaning, the "truth," of names. And it is not merely the names of the human characters that have importance in this text. The dog bears "the name of 'Hive,' an appellation that was doubtless derived" (III, 51) from his master's occupation. Nor is the importance of name of sentient beings alone a matter of attention. Hive's home is a shanty. Cooper interrupts his opening action in the narrative to "digress for one moment in order to say a word ... concerning this term 'shanty'" (II, 27). The term, as Cooper continues, means a cabin .... The derivation of the word has caused some speculation. The best explanation ... is to suppose "shanty" ... a corruption of "chiante," which is thought may have been a ... Canadian French phrase to express a "dog-kennel." "Chenil," we believe, is the true French term for such a thing. (II, 27-28) Ben names his shanty "Castle Meal"; Cooper notes that "this appellation was a corruption of 'chateau au Miel,' a name given to it by a wag of a voyager' (II, 30). This "honey house" stands "quite near to the banks of the Kalamazoo" (II, 28), which name is a corruption of the Indian word whose true form is "Kekalamazoo though the whites have seen fit to omit the first syllable" (XXVII, 452). The river winds through the glades, which "spaces ... always irregular, and often of singular beauty, have obtained the name of

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332 'openings,' the two terms combined to give their appellation to this particular species of native forest, under the name of 'Oak Openings.'" (I, 11). Many other 15 place names are also given and examined or explained. Indeed, philological attention is even paid to words that are simply of interest, to Cooper, and that name nothing at all. At least thirty references in The 16 Oak Openings to matters linguistic exist. From the preface, where Cooper takes issue with "Old Sam Johnson" on the spelling and meaning of "burr-oak" quite to the last chapter, where Cooper notes that "the word 'prairie' may now be said to be adopted into the English" ( 499) from the French, Cooper is plainly interested in what things, places, and people are called, and in why they are so called. Corporal Flint, dying an almost superhumanly brave death, is lauded by his tormenters; "You have a stout heart. It is made of stone, and not of flesh" (XXV, 416). Gershom Waring, the drunk, is known all over the locale as "Whiskey Centre," and his abode is named the same. The Reverend Mr. Amen, as he is universally known "on account of the unction with which this word was ordinarily pronounced, and quite likely, too, because it was the word of all others most pleasant to [the soldiers'] ears, after a sermon" (XI, 174), is initially presented in such a manner that the reader believes his

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333 name a typically ridiculous appellation. Cooper had fun naming his foolish divines: Dr. Dogma (The Red Rover), Rev. Mr. Hornblower (The Crater), Rev. Dr. Liturgy (Lionel Lincoln), Rev. Mr. watch (The Ways of the Hour), Rev. Mr. Worden (Satanstoe), and Rev. Meek Wolfe and his 17 descendant Meek Lamb (The Wept of Wish-Ton-Wish). Like the typical divine, Mr. Amen seems initially to be named in such a way as to indicate a humorously stock figure. Yet, as the narrative progresses, Amen's true worth is revealed. He hallows the true and seminal marriage between the romantic leads and, more importantly, goes to his martyr's death blessing his murderers so fervently as to effect Peter's conversion, which conversion vivifies the central theme of the work. It is, the reader comes to understand, a mistake to view Amen as a buffoon. It is also a mistake to accept his name at face value. Little wonder, then, that the name is "not the real name of the missionary, but ... a sobriquet (XI, 174). Amen's "real name" is never given. What is given are his acts, and only through a proper evaluation of his actions, such an evaluation as Peter gives, can the missionary's "real" worth be apprised. Although the female lead has as her "real" name Margery Waring, "everybody calls her Blossom" (II, 32). She is the "flower of the wilderness" (32), the "blossom

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334 of the wilderness" (III, 55). As the "blossom" in the forest, Margery naturally attracts the "bee." In Chapter I, Cooper carefully introduces the bee who will be drawn to the blossom. After briefly mentioning the chance forest meeting among two Indians and two whites, Cooper explains, The fourth individual was of middle size, young, active, exceedingly well formed, and with a certain open and frank expression .... His real name was Benjamin Boden, though he was extensively known throughout the northwestern territories by the sobriquet of Ben Buzz .... By the voyageurs, and other French of that region, he was almost universally styled le Bourdon, or the "Drone" ... from the circumstances that he was . a "bee-hunter." ( 12) Ben, Cooper adds, is called "Buzzing Ben--for the sobriquet was applied to him in this form quite as often as in the other" (17). Cooper refers to the hero with apparently indiscriminate use of these names. Cooper also refers to him as "our necromancer, or 'medicine man'" (IX, 140) after he "finds" the "whiskey spring" and impresses the Indians with his powers. Ben's multiple names seem to indicate the fact that he is a many faceted individual and that the "true" Ben is the sum of all the parts named. As Benjamin Boden he 18 is proper husband material for the beautiful Margery. As Ben Buzz he is a helpful friend to other American frontiersmen, of the better sort, and a provider of honey to the citizens of towns. His occupation names

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335 him and defines his economic worth. As le Bourdon, he is the worker. Cooper makes very clear that the sobriquet does not indicate any tendency in Ben's character to live merely on the labors of others' work. Rather, the term seems to suggest both his maleness, for drones are the male of the bee, and his general disinclination to harm any person or thing in his environment. Again, the drone of the species has no sting. As the worker, Ben intelligently interacts with his environment so as to live in such a way that he never absolutely destroys and disturbs as little as possible the American scene. When he does alter his world, he improves it. As the "medicine man" he is the educated and intelligent settler of European stock, who has both the right and the proper ability to supplant the noble, but savage, Indian. When Ben and Margery, or le Bourdon and his Blossom, meet, their coming together is as natural and informal as is the arrival of a bee at a flower. "'You are Blossom'" (V, 77), states Ben. "'You are, then, my brother's friend,'" states she. No introductions are necessary; indeed, no formal name exchange is ever made, for the two lovers need no names to know their natures. They immediately ally to destroy the "enemy here ... in this hut" (78), the whiskey that corrupts Waring and the Indians. Margery seems to be drawn to Ben, and her

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336 instinctive knowledge to trust him is fortunate. If she had known the definition of Ben's sobriquet, she would have been badly misled. As Cooper makes clear, Margery had heard of Boden, or of "Bourdon," as she called him, in common with hundreds who, confounding his real name with his sobriquet, made the mistake of using the last under the impression that it was the true appellation .... Had she understood the real meaning of "Bourdon," she would have bitten off her tongue before she would have called Boden by such an appellation. (X, 159) But Margery is safe, in her ignorance of the French language, from mistaking the sobriquet, the mis-name, for the man. She, instead, looks to Ben's actions for a true measure of the man. Although it is the misguided Amen who makes the comment, the injunction that people should not allow themselves to become overly concerned with nomenclature is valid. As he observes to Ben: "Do not disturb yourself with names: they hurt no one, and will soon be forgotten"(XI, 183). In the real world, this observation is valid. In mimetic fiction, it often is. In Cooper's universe, it is an unreasonable, albeit logical, proposition which is false. In The Oak Openings, Amen pays for his logic with his life when he fails to be properly attentive to and to feel properly "disturbed" by Peter's "real" name. Ungque, the weasel-like villain pays attention to names. When called upon to offer a rebuttal against

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337 Peter, Ungque challenges the other brave's credibility via an approach through name. I am called the Weasel ... I am well named. All Injins have not names. My great brother [Peter] ... has no name. He is called Peter, by the pale-faces. It is a good name. But it is a pale-face name. I wish we knew the real name of my brother. (XXII, 366) Cooper offers Peter's name; in fact, Cooper offers several names. Some of the Indian warriors "made many allusions to a chief whom they styled Onoah, but who was usually called Scalping Peter among the whites" (X, 156). Cooper's first textual reference to the character states that Peter's "English sobriquet had been obtained from the circumstances of its being reputed that this chief had on diverse occasions murdered the pale-faces who fell in his way, and then scalped them" (157). Shortly after this introduction, Peter makes his entrance. He is introduced by Amen as being Onoah, a wise counselor and guide. Actually, unbeknownst to the reverend, this "Onoah was the Indian appellation of the terrible and most dreaded savage, who, in English, went by the name of Scalping Peter, or 'Scalping Pete,' among all the white dwellers on that frontier. The Indian name, indeed, was said to mean 'scalp,' in several of the dialects" (XI,175). As Cooper continues, after a brief philological aside treating the "convertible nature of our language"

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338 which tongue he notes Americans seem to delight in altering through specious nomenclature so "wanton" as to be termed an actual "abomination'' (176), most of the whites fail to recognize Peter because they are ignorant of the proper name. However, Cooper specifies that had "the Indian been termed 'Scalping Peter,' it is probable that [the females] would have screamed, if not actually fled" (176) upon hearing his "true" name. But Onoah, as the Indians really know, is not Peter's real name either. It was said that even his real name was unknown, that of Onoah having been given in token of the many scalps he took, and that of wa-wa nosh, which he also sometimes bore, having been bestowed on him by adoption in consequence of an act of favor extended to him from an Ojibwa of some note, while that of Peter was clearly derived from the whites. Some of his greatest (Indian] admirers whispered that when the true name of the "Tribeless" should get to be known, his origin, early career, and all relating to him would at once become familiar to every red man. (XII, 198-199) Onoah, or Scalping Peter, or Scalping Pete, or Wa wa-nosh, or the Tribeless, or "Peter Onoah of the tribe of Benjamin" (XI, 186), as Amen styles him, or Old Peter, "the great centre of interest" (XXX, 503), as Cooper comes to call him, is perfectly named by being usually misnamed throughout the narrative. None of the characters in the adventure tale proper can truly know this Indian's "true" name, for the "real" name would define the man, and he cannot be known anywhere within

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339 his tale proper. The entire adventure narrative treats his protean facets as he transmogrifies into Cooper's mythic "civilized red man" whose "expression of benevolence ... we scarcely remember ever to have seen equaled. Indeed ... the love which shone out of this old man's countenance ... surpassed that which we can recall as belonging to any other human face" (XXX, 494495). Peter's face, like his life, and unlike the lives of any of the other characters in the tale, indicates "the power of God" ( 50 3) Peter says, "I see my Fadder that is in heaven. His face shine on me, day and night" (504). With a countenance displaying a loving expression surpassing that of "any other human face," Peter is in constant communion with God. He is, unarguably, a "striking monument" (502) to "de force of de Holy Spirit" (504). The simple name "Peter" is the proper, and ultimate, name for this character, the "rock" upon whom Cooper builds his tale. The savage's conversion to Christianity is The Oak Openings's core; tracing the repercussions of this conversion is the task Cooper set himself as author. Just as a proper examination of the "truth" of names leads to understanding of a fictive reality and just as close attention to crosses, fires, and bees in the text reveals the objects' development as symbols, so does right appreciation of the function of

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340 action in The Oak Openings illuminate the symbolic use Cooper makes of his action structure. He uses the action to vivify himself. The Author as Actor/Act-er "Let us do in place of talking." The Deerslayer (VI, 51) Chapter XXX of The Oak Openings is the only example in the Cooper canon where the author places himself corporeally in his tale. This, the last chapter of the text, opens "about thirty-six [years] to the summer in which the events recorded in this legend occurred" (489). Cooper continues: "We had written, thus far, on the evidence of documents sent to us, when an occasion offered to verify the truth of some of our pictures, at least, by means of personal observation" (489). Cooper 19 here employs the editorial plural. Quitting our own quiet and secluded abode in the mountains ... in this current year of 1848, we descended into the valley of the Mohawk, got into cars, and went flying by rails toward the setting sun. in about twenty hours We reached Buffalo turned aside to visit the cataract. At Buffalo we embarked in a boat to Detroit. ( 389-391)

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341 On this boat are a grandmother, a daughter "of little less than forty," and "two exceedingly pretty girls children of the last" (491). Also with the females is an "aged male" (492) who is not seen on deck until the following morning. Then, his "color" and "bold countenance" (493) reveal him to be an Indian, and his comportment shows him to be a rarity, "a civilized red man." Of course, this is Peter and the grandmother is Margery; these five are returning "home" to the Oak Openings. Cooper, the author-actor, opens a conversation with the Indian and shortly discovers his identity to be that of "'Scalping Peter,' the very man I was travelling into Michigan to see" (495). Abandoning the editorial plural, Cooper summarily switches into first person pronoun use here and retains its use throughout the closing pages of the book. The author-actor chats briefly with Margery, and she sketches a rapid summary of the intervening years, including Ben's participation in the War of 1812, the couple's return to their "beloved Openings" (497), their current affluence and good health, and mention of Ben's admirable qualities. The traveling author-actor and the other five characters reach Detroit and depart "on a railroad, rattling away toward the setting sun" (498) until they reach the "village" of Kalamazoo (499). While the

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342 females and Peter proceed to Prairie Ronde that day, it is not until the next morning that Cooper takes a "buggy" (500) out to the "little village or large hamlet of Schoolcraft" (501) where the other characters live. At that place Boden greets the author-actor and invites him "to the field" to see the harvest. There works the "gigantic invention" (502), the harvester which cuts the grain, separates the kernels from the husks, blows away the chaff, and bags it. "Old Peter went afield with us that day" (502). And, as they all stand "still in the field," Pigeonswing arrives. Although the author "admires" Ben's hives, Margery, the children, and the land, his "great centre of interest" (503) is Peter. They are all "walking in the garden, after dinner" (503) when Peter turns toward the author and addresses him, enjoining him earnestly. "Tell me you make a book .... In dat book tell trut'. You see me .... Now I see my Fadder dat is in heaven. His face shine on me, day and night .... Stranger, love God. B'lieve his blessed Son, who pray for dem dat kill him . . I have spoken. Let dem dat read your book understand." (503-504) Cooper's chapter-long journey is, like the unfinished journey which precedes it, a journey back home. He sees Niagara Falls--"thirty-eight years had passed away since we had laid eyes on this wonderful fall of water" (490)--and discovers it to be different. From the mature perspective off the well-traveled

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34 3 European tourist, he finds the falls, like "Italy itself" to have a character of "softness," to be astonishingly sweet, to exhibit "sublime softness and gentleness" (490). He believes "men, and even women" (491) love the place. When Cooper travels on the "rattling" trains, he is clearly pleasantly surprised at the "rapid progress of Western civilization" (498), and he thrice observes the convenience that this rapid mode of journey offers. The city of Detroit and its environs possess "many of the better features of a long-inhabited region" (498). When he arrives at the Openings, Cooper sees "the beautiful perfection" (499) of the land, and he lauds the "remarkable place" with "an admiration that was not entirely free from awe" (500). The "fine" (501 ) inhabitants of this "delightful" (500) land direct their "ingenious" machine to harvest so much grain that "America could feed the world." (498) The description reveals an unequivocally positive view of the land, a love. D. H. Lawrence has observed that "it is perhaps easier to love America passionately when you look at it through the wrong end of the telescope ... 20 are actually in America, America hurts." When you The Cooper of the closing chapter of this text, the Cooper filled with "awe," could prove any critic to be wrong. Cooper's journey balances the previously unclosed journey as the author accompanies Margery home. The

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344 journey in this last chapter, the authorial trip, does not "close" either; Cooper leaves himself standing, with Peter on Prairie Ronde. The scene doubles perfectly with the opening one, when the assembled characters, then grouped around the young Ben, watched a man perceive truth. In Chapter XXX, the aged Ben and Cooper stand before a man who has perceived truth. In Chapter I Pigeonswing and the others are enlightened by Ben's perceptions of the natural world; in Chapter XXX Pigeonswing and the others are enlightened by Peter's perceptions of the spiritual world. Young Ben knows how to focus on the significant acts of the bees. He can interpret the "truth" of these actions because he knows much about the habits of the insects and he can evaluate intelligently. Old Peter knows how to focus on the really significant act of the world. He can correctly interpret the ntruthn because he has lived long as a Christian. The important act is Christ's death and the real import of that act is "love". In 1812 Peter "saw, but it was 'as in a glass darkly'n (XXI, 353); in 1848, Peter sees, clearly, God's true "face." With time, one comes to perception of what is important; with right thinking, "Christian thinking," one comes to proper interpretation of what one sees. By 1848, Fenimore Cooper had had "thirty-eight years" to consider the falls at Niagara. He had t h e

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345 "every-day experience of a life now fast verging toward threescore" (XXXVI, 438) to consider the acts of men. He had nearly two generations of wordshaping with which to create worlds. And he had "right thinking", for he was assiduously reading scripture daily and deeply considering matters religious. Cooper's increasing attention and response to the power of God's revealed word is delineated in the 21 journals and displayed in his own published works. Toward the end of his life, Cooper seemed increasingly concerned with religious matters. His narratives reflect his private concerns. Arvid Shulenberger describes 22 Cooper's late period as his phase of "moral idealism" and observes that the late Cooper espouses "a theory of idealism arguing that fiction should present the ideal in character and situation" (8). This representation served to illustrate "morality in art" through creation of "the novel as a vehicle for moral truths" (58). Donald Ringe, in a perceptive article "Cooper's Last Novels, 1847-1850," argues that these later works have a basically Christian orientation and 23 that they address seminal issues. Ringe finds The Oak Openings to have an "explicit religious" (583) theme that conveys a submerged concern: "What is truth, and how is man to discover it?" (584). Ringe concludes that, for Cooper, truth was to be found through a

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346 balance "between reason and faith, knowledge and belief" (586). Ignorance keeps men from perceiving the "truth" (587), but educated man must, in order to penetrate to the truth, realize that knowledge must always be "tempered by that ... humility which comes with the realization of ... how limited" men's faculties are in relation to "the hand of God" (588). As noted by critics and revealed through his journals and texts, Cooper's late concerns were with Christianity, morality, and reality. In life, Cooper was no more than a few years away from his confirmation in the Episcopalian faith; he was reading his Bible daily. In The Oak Openings Peter is undergoing his conversion and the Rev. Mr. Amen is misquoting Genesis ("Extraordinary! Extraordinary!") and Leviticus. In his journal Cooper remarks his interest in the problem of reality and man's perception of it when he refers to John and Jude and notes man's inability to "comprehend" the "mystery" of "every thing." In The Oak Openings this same problem is examined at length, via the characters of Amen, Boden, and Peter. Cooper's interest in the matter of truth in literature, the "word", is manifest in his journals in the Revelations entry that notes the gospel to be "genuine beyond a question, from internal evidence, i f from no other." The Oak Openings too, exhibits Cooper's

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347 "extraordinary" involvement with words, their meanings and their moral, or Christian, truth. That author Cooper knew he knew the "truth" is implicit in every text he wrote; the authorial voice is always "right." But author Cooper, given his equally manifest belief that acts reveal the truth, had been trammeled all his life by the immobile presence of his authorial personna, which only speaks and never acts. The intrusive authorial presence, so vital in all of Cooper's narratives, is, after all, called merely the "voice." For 30 years, only peripherally--in footnotes and in prefaces--had the voice of the author even the semblance of a body with which to act. Here, in Chapter XXX of The Oak Openings did author Cooper find a way to become author/actor/act-er. Only here did Cooper hit on a way to frame himself so that he could act and reveal his "truth." Cooper's journey, then, is operating on multiple levels. First, it "closes" the incomplete journey of Margery and Ben which Chapter XXIX left unfinished. Margery returns home, riding train and steamship in a "bee-line" (XIX, 314) across America. The author/actor accompanies her into her fictive world, that New Eden the very dung heaps of which are lovely to the author's eye. As the author/actor is freed to act, he offers action which defines. As act-er, the author journeys.

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348 This journey is, like the journey action of the entire book preceding it, inspired by dual components; it is both Cooper's return to home and his creative escape. Cooper had, in 1833, returned to America after a seven year absence. Aspects of that return were most unpleasant. Yet, as his subsequent fictions show, the author Cooper felt that America was ultimately his proper aesthetic home. The man Cooper was forced to remain in the real land, but the author returned to his fictive land in his narratives. Here in The Oak Openings he can move across his ideal, becoming as "real" as is the scene. From this perspective can the author/act-er perceive with "awe" the destroyed forests, the "manure pile" (500), and ruined Peter, the tottering remnant of America's disappearing Indian. In the idealized and non-mimetic yet simultaneously artistically true and fictively real scene, Cooper can finally become the real act-er in his American drama. He journeys back home into "the garden" and simultaneously escapes the confines of non-corporeality which have held the authorial "voice" prisoner. The author/actor/act-er lives an act of definition; he journeys to hear Peter's "trut'." Author Cooper moves actor Cooper into the myth, then has act-er Cooper stop to listen to an old Indian.

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-----------------------349 In Chapter I Cooper offered several characters viewing Ben, whose superior knowledge allowed him to know "more." What Ben represents, of course, is the "proper" American settler. In Chapter XXX Cooper views Peter, whose superior knowledge allows him to know more than the other characters. That Peter is a viable symbol for some hyper-real being is appropriate, given both Cooper's lifelong development of the "noble savage'' in his fictions and the historical American genocide which produced a guilt in the white citizens and remained in 24 the consciousness of the nation's artists. Very early in the history of American letters Benjamin Church's Entertaining Passages on King Philip's War reveals the American permutation of the ancient archetypal quest myth. The white man who hunted down and destroyed the American Indian is seen, according to Richard Slotkin's Regeneration Through Violence, actually searching for "the source of divine power" (156). The conversion narrative format, which Cooper had bequeathed to him through predecessors stretching back nearly two hundred years, shows the American soul finding salvation through God's direct intervention. In The Oak Openings, Peter is a Christian Indian; other Indians in Cooper are as doomed, and as noble a nd as venerable, and as romantic, but no Ind i an is as "right" as this "civilized red man" w h o l ooks on t h e

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350 "face" of God "day and night." No other Indian in Cooper's fiction has the "right" to enjoin the author actor to write. Only Old Peter has the spiritual stature to merit the center position, that "great center of interest," in a text permeated with Cooper's implicit belief that God was directing the progress of the affairs of men. "For our-selves, we firmly believe that the finger of Providence is pointing the way to all races, and colors, and nations, along the path that is to lead the east and the west alike to the great goal of human wants 11 ("Preface," 5). It is the will of God that Peter's story be told, but it is an ill of society that renders him illiterate. Peter needs an amanuensis, an "interpreter" to reveal God's "trut" to mankind. In this way can author Cooper don the mantle of St. Mark, the first Peter's "translator," joining the "family" of recorders whose messages were revelatory of 25 divine truth. Some little while before he began to write The Oak Openings, Cooper had begun reading the New 26 Testament, the second book of which is Mark's. All of the Bible, according to the belief of a real Christian, contains the words of God. Thus can be seen a reason for Cooper's near obsessive concern in this text with etymologies, with the "truth" of what the words mean, with what "truth" the names tell, with the "true" power of language, the "word.

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351 Cooper's journey into his fictive America and the injunction laid on him by Peter seems to illustrate a very reasonable, even if not very logical, belief: that the true word can--theoretically, at least and within the covers of a text--create the real truth. If Cooper the man had ever felt he needed a justification for his lifelong work, he had surely managed to create one for himself when he chronicled his Michigan journey. He had surely managed to do the acts, both the journey action and the act of writing about the action itself, that conveyed his essential truth. Unlike the anathematized American Congress, "which reads the constitution as an abbe mumbles his aves and paters ... looking at everything but his texts" (XXIX, 486), Cooper does look to his text, to his own Chapter XXX, and there he finds the real truth of his existence. The critic, ploughing through Cooper's texts and attempting to understand that which is obscured by the very words that encompass the worlds created, cannot help but wonder how any "truth" could manage to move 27 from the author's hand to the reader's brain. Yet, somehow, perhaps as a result of some unknown artistic Providence's divine revelation, we still read--and

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352 believe. Cooper believed, too. Perhaps, in some h y per reality of extra-textual existence, Cooper's function as recorder of God's truth is plausible. "Finished Revelations, a most extraordinary book. It is genuine beyond a question, from internal evidence, if from no other." March 11, 1848 Journal XXXV James Fenimore Cooper "And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful." Ist Century A. D. Revelation 21:5 st. John Notes 1. As early as 1852 William Cullen Bryant finds the tale furnishing "matter for a narrative of almost painful interest. There is great art shown" ( xxxiv) in the crafting of the work. The observation was made in the speech "Discourse on the Life, Genius, and Writings of J. Fenimore Cooper" which was delivered at Metropolitan Hall in New York on February 25, 1852 and which was printed as an introduction to the te x t of the D. Appleton & Co. 1873 reprint of Precaution v-xl i More recently, George Dekker, James Fenimore Cooper: T h e American Scott (New York: Barnes & Noble, 196 7 ) finds The Oak Openings to be "exciting Cooper" (247). H. Daniel Peck,~ World~ Itself: The Pastoral Moment in Cooper's Fiction (New Haven: Yale Universit y Press, 1977) describes the text as a "perfect example" ( 56 ) of Cooper's work. However, an examination of the cr i t i c i s m shows that The Oak Openings is all but forgotten. 2. H. Daniel Peck,~ World E_Y Itself, f in ds Th e Oak Openings to be a "perfect example" of "t h e theatrical qualities of Cooper's work"(58). 3. His subsequent narratives are T h e Sea L io n s, The Ways of the Hour, "The Lake Gun," and u psTde D own. The Sea Lions, which offers Cooper's most inv o lv e d u se of doubling is not American f or th e bu lk o f it s

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353 setting. The Ways of the Hour, a sociologi~al treat~se focusing upon the eviis"or"women's liberation, the ills of the jurisprudential system, the follies of misguided public opinion, and the villainy of the press, is an out-and-out "whodunit," and is very possibly the first national example of the type. "The Lake Gun" is no more than an extended short story, a recounting of an Indian variant of the Flying Dutchman legend. Upside Down is a drama. 4. John J. McAleer, "Biblical Analogy in the Leatherstocking Tales," Nineteenth-Century Fiction 17.3 (1962): 217-235, finds that Cooper's Biblical "analogies ... actually can be accounted tentative experiments in symbolism" (217) in the works of the 1820's. With specific reference to Cooper's view of scripture, McAleer concludes: "The unwary reader may think Cooper's hostility extends to the Bible itself ... but reasonable attention makes it clear that Cooper has no quarrel with the Bible as the revealed word of God. He opposes only those abuses of it which have led men into dangerous errors" (235). s. Genesis 49:19, as it would almost have to, undercuts Arnen's "argument" even within itself. If Amen had remembered the entire quotation, he would have known that "Gad, a troop shall overcome him: but he shall overcome at the last." 6. Peter's plight is precisely that of Natty. Natty's illiteracy hampers his ability to "know" God's truth; however, as his five tales amply prove, he is able to overcome the handicap. Peter is also finally able to triumph despite his shortcomings. It takes him longer than it took Natty, probably because Peter is a red man, handicapped both by his "savage" cultural heritage and his "tainted" genetic burden. While Natty has but the one "cross" to bear (illiteracy), Peter has at least three burdens under which he must labor. 7. Aeschylus uses the Prometheus myth to examine man's relation to the gods. Shelley offers Prometheus as a symbol of humanity itself. According to some stories, Prometheus was the creator of mankind; according to the existing text of Aeschylus, he is a being consigned to Hell. 8. In The Last of the Mahicans Fort William Henr y burns. In The Prairie fire ravages the plain. In The Wept of Wisli=Ton-Wish fire destroys the Heathcote'shome. In The Heidenmauer, fire destroys the Abbey of

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354 Limburg. In The Pathfinder fire threatens the blockhouse. In The Deerslayer Hutter has been "burned out" three times. In Satanstoe fire threatens Ravensnest. In The Redskins Ravensnest actually ignites, but is saved. In The Crater volcanic fires destroy an entire island nation. In The Oak Ooenings fire destroys the Boden home. In The Ways of the Hour fire destroys the Goodwin home. 9. Cooper's dozen or more references to volcanoes and volcanic fires in this text may reflect a carryover of the potent image he used to such good effect in The Crater, published the previous year. As an example of the utterly destructive and horrific power that fire can have, a volcano can hardly be surpassed. 10. Bees and their honey have nearly as traditional a symbolic history as has the ambiguous fire. Biblically, honey is one of the "treasures'' (Jeremiah 41:8). It is, along with a piece of broiled fish, one of the two special objects that the risen Jesus did "eat of" (Luke 24:43) before he opened in his followers the understanding of the scriptures and was carried up into heaven (Luke 24: 45-51). Cooper, it may be noted, was reading St. John, which gospel immediately follows that of Luke, when he began his journal on the first day of the new year, 1848. He was then about sixty days into the composition of The Oak Openings. Classically, the keeping of bees and the procurement of their hpney are well-established activities, noted by such diverse authorities as Aristotle, Vergil, Varro, and Columella (The Oxford Classical Dictionary, 2nd edition, 1970).~hat Cooper intended the classical allusion is abundantly clear: "Boden was far from being a scholar .... Still, Ben had read everything about bees upon which he could lay his hands .... Among other books which had thus fallen in Le Bourdon's way, was one which somewhat minutely described the uses that were made of bees by the ancient soothsayers in their divinations" (XIX, 318). When Ben asks Pastor Amen if that divine has any knowledge of this fact, Cooper continues: "Now, the missionary was not a learned man ... but many an unlearned man has heard of this, and he happened to be one of the number. Of Virgil, for instance, Parson Amen knew but little; though ... he had learned that the soothsayers put great faith in bees" (319). Amen and Ben could, for instance, have known that honey was believed to bestow wisdom or eloquence on those who ate of it, especially in their youths. They might have read that Zeus himself was occasionally

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355 called "Melissaios," or "Bee." One or both probably knew that nectar and ambrosia are generally thought to be, severally, a honey drink and some unspecified form of honey. Ambrosia and nectar, traditionally (and Cooper, at least, would have known this) are the foods of the gods, which foods bestow immortality to those lucky enough to have the opportunity to eat or drink them. 11. Cooper was not the only American author of this era to use bees as symbols. Both William Cullen Bryant and John Greenleaf Whittier penned poems which make effective use of the insects. Bryant's "The Prairies" uses the bee as a symbol for white men. Toward the end of the poem, the author, having mused on the Indian civilization and its destruction at the hands of the "rude [white] conquerors," beholds the "blooming wilds" which are unpeopled but still "quick with life." The bee, "A more adventurous colonist than man," goes about his work. The "domestic hum" of the insect causes the poet to "think" he hears the sound "of that advancing multitude" of "children ... maidens, and worshippers" who "shall soon fill" the scene The poem first appeared in the Knickerbocker Magazine in 1833. Cooper's headnotes feature Bryant's works more than fifteen times, beginning in 1824 with The Pilot (XXXIV). Whittier's "Telling the Bees" (1858) treats, in sentimental fashion, the "custom, brought from the Old Country" of notifying the bees and dressing their hives "in mourning" after the death of a member of the family. Cooper quotes from Whittier's poetry three times in headnotes; coincidentally, all three times are in The Oak Openings (XIX, XXII, XXV). 12. Cooper's interest in nomenclature, revealed in his published works, reflects his private attention to naming. To judge from a letter that he sent to three girls of the Hosmer family, the interest appears to have been of family-wide attention at the Cooper household. The Hosmer girls had written Cooper a note of admiration in which they referred to a character in The Chainbearer by the name of Major Hosmer. Cooper's January 1, 1847 response reads, in part: In the use of names I commonly take the first that offers, though some little fitness is to be observed as a matter of course. On this subject of names, I question if one could be invented, that does not belong to some one. I have made two efforts of th i s sort, and both failed. In naming Natty I dubbed him Bumppo, thinking I had invented an uncouth appellation that no

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356 one certainly could covet, and that no one would claim. Six months did not go by, before I learned there was a man of that very name living within five miles of me! The other instance was in The Two Admirals, in which I called Sir Gervaise Oakes'ssteward Galleygo, because it was his business to go to and from the galley. On this name I felicitated myself, fancying it was solely mine. I bragged of it, in the family circle, until my pride was lowered one day, by being shown an advertisement in a New York paper, in which Galleygo & Co offered some thing for sale. (Beard's Letters; v, 183-184). 13. George Dekker, in James Fenimore Cooper: The American Scott (New York: Barnes & Noble, 1967), notes that "More than in any other novel, Cooper is concerned in The Deerslayer with the moral and social significance of the names attached to people and things" (185). While The Deerslayer does evince a more apparent concern with nomenclature than many other of Cooper's texts, it remains to be proven that The Deerslayer has more attention paid to this subject "than in any other novel." 14. See: Precaution: George Denbigh/ Earl of Pendennyss; The Ey_: Harvey Birch; Mr. Harper/ George Washington; The Pioneers: Oliver Edwards/Edward Oliver Effingham; The Pilot: Mr. Gray/ John Paul Jones; Eionel Lincoln: Ralph/Sir Lionel Lincoln and Job Pray. 15. For example: i. "Bob Ruly (Bois Brule*) .... *This unfortunate name, which it may be necessary to tell a portion of our readers means 'burnt wood,' seems condemned to all sorts of abuses among the linguists of the west" (I, 15). ii. "Mackinaw (Michilimackinac)" (II, 39). iii. A "bit of bottom land of about half an acre in extent, which was so formed and surrounded, as to have something of the appearance of the arena of a large amphitheatre" (XVI, 257), that is "afterward known among the Ojibwas by the name of the 'council of the Bottom Land, near to the spring of gushing water'" (261). iv. "'Bobolo' (Bois Blanc)" (XXX, 498), which is "an island near Detroit, the proper name of which is 'Bois Blanc,' [but which] is familiarly known to the lake mariners by the name of Bobolo" (I, 15). v. The "Detroit River, a strait, as its name indicates" (XXIX, 482) which "by a strange blending of significations and languages, is popularly called the 'Detroit River'" (XXX, 498).

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357 vi. "Prairie Ronde ... Prairie Round, as that particular part of the country is called in the dialect of Michigan, it being a corruption of the old French name of la prairie ronde. The Round Meadow does not sound as well as Prairie Round, and ... though a mixture of the two languages, we prefer to use it" (XXX, 499) 16. See: i. "sartain," (19,21); ii. "actyve," (19); iii. "the bison, or the buffalo, as the animal is erroneously, but very generally, termed throughout the country," ( 29) ; iv. "Yengeese ... the term applied to the 'English,' by the tribes to whom they first became known," (29); v. "kear" ("care"), (31); vi. "'dander' (dandruff)," (54); vii. "onaccountable grist" (" an uncountable number"), ( 54) ; viii. "folks", "Gershom would put his noun of multitude into the plural,Nova-Anglice" (54 and passim); ix. "Dissipation", "Lest the instructed reader should wonder at a man's using the term 'dissipation' in a wilderness, it may be well to explain that, in common American parlance, 'dissipation' has got to mean 'drunkenness.' Perhaps half of the whole country, if told that a man, or a woman, might be exceedingly dissipated and never swallow anything stronger than water, would stoutly deny the justice of applying the word to such a person. This perversion of the meaning has probably arisen from the circumstance that there is very little dissipation in the country that is not connected with hard drinking," (73); x. "garrison," (175). "The term did not imply, in the language of that region, the troops only who garrisoned a post, but it was ever oftener applied to the post itself .... This is one of the proofs of the convertible nature of our language, of which the country affords so many, and which has changed the smaller-sized rivers into 'creeks,' 'lakes' into 'ponds,' 'squares' into 'parks,' public promenades on the water into 'batteries,' to all of which innovations, bad as they may be, we are much more willing to submit, than to the new-fangled and lubberly abomination of saying 'on a steamboat,' or 'on a ship'" (176); xi. "cache", "A Western term, obviously derived from cacher, to conceal," (205); xii. "everlasting", rendered in the original Greek in a footnote in which Cooper chastises ignorant people for not knowing that the original word may mean both

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358 "everlasting" and "eternal" ( 212); xiii. "'camping out,' as it is termed in the language of the west," (255); xiv. "stampede," "that excited and tumultuous scene, which would probably now be termed a 'stampede, in the Mexican-America-English of the day," (289); xv. "white-caps", "Nothing that goes through, or on, the water--and the last is the phrase best suited to the floating of a bark canoe--can ever be made to keep company with that feathery foam, which, under the several names of 'white-caps'--an in-shore and lubber's term--'combs,' 'breaking of the seas,' 'the wash,' etc., etc. glances by a vessel in a blow ... (475); xvi. "small", "steering so 'small,' as seamen term it" (476); xvii. "city", "We have a horror of the expression 'city,' and are a little fastidious, perhaps, touching its use" (492). 17. Doctors, as well as ministers, fare poorly with their names, reflecting Cooper's lifelong disdain of this profession: Dr. Bat (The Prairie), Dr. Ergot (The Wept of Wish-Ton-Wish), Dr. Heaton (The Crater), Dr. McBrain (The Ways of the Hour), Dr. Sage (The Sea Lions), Dr Tourniquet (The PilotT, and Dr. Wurtz (Miles Wallingford). Attorneysseem to fare even worse: Lawyer Bragg (Home As Found), Lawyer Craft (The Sea Lions), Lawyer Crooks(The Ways of the Hour), Lawyer Doolittle (The Pioneers), Lawyer Furlong (The Two Admirals), Lawyer Lippet (The Pioneers), Lawyer Meekly (Miles Wallingford), anc1Lawyer Seal (Homeward Bound). That Cooper had a sense of humor, and a keen one, may be illustrated in an examination of the following exuberant list of names: Quartermaster Ben Barrel (The Two Admirals), the lovely heroine Rose Budd (Jack Tier), the child Ordeal Bumgrum (Home As Found), journali~ Steadfast Dodge (Homeward BoundT-:the New York socialite Mrs. Eyelet (Le Mouchoir), the steward David Galleygo (The Two Admirals), pilot Handlead (Homeward Bound), the lame tailor and his termagant wife Hector and Desire Homespun (The Red Rover), political agitator John Jaw (The Manikins), cook Larder (The Two Admirals), captain orthe Royal Irish Grenadiers--WFuse (Lionel Lincoln), peripatetic Sancho Mundo (Mercedes of Castile), Yankee housekeeper Remarkable Pettibone (The Pioneers), the idiot Job Pray (Lionel Lincoln), political agitator Plausible Shout (The Manikins), drill officer Harry Skip (Lionel Lincoln), ship's captain Thomas Tiller (The Water-Witch), surveyor Traverse (Satanstoe), editor Warbler (Miles Wallingford), and Joe Wart, boy (Home As Found). -

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359 18. "Benjamin" is from the Hebrew and means "Son of the right hand." "Margery" is a diminutive form of Margaret, from the Greek, and means "A pearl." 19. His use of the plural, which he will almost immediately abandon, was ridiculed to such good advantage the year previously in Chapter XXIX of The Crater. The editor of the Crater Truth-Teller "did use the pronoun 'we,' in speaking of himself ... (232). Yet Cooper, in relating an anecdote, continues: "Once, however, this worthy did get himself in a quandary with the use of the imperial pronoun. A mate ... inflicted personal chastisement on him .... A bulletin of the battle was published; the editor speaking of himself always in the plural ... using such expressions as these:--'We now struck our antagonist a blow with our fist, androllowed this up with a kick of our foot-,-.-. Now these expressions ... set all thec:ud women . against the editor ... that the battle had been of two against one; and that even the simple-minded ... set down as somewhat cowardly" ( 2 3 3) 20. D. H. Lawrence, Studies in Classic American Literature (London: Martin Secker,1933) 51. 21. As Beard's Letters reveal, Cooper's activities at home for the period are chronicled from January l, 1848 to April 14, 1848 (in Journals XXVIXLIII) and for two days in May (Journal XLIV). On January 1, 1848, when begins this series of journal entries, Cooper is reading St. John in the New Testament. He reads daily, apparently, when he is at home, steadily working his way through all the New Testament and then beginning again with Genesis. Every journal entry contains some reference to scriptural reading; by May Cooper was into Numbers and in May the journals stop. While the same period shows Cooper feels his work on The Oak Openings to be "not a labour of love, but a labour" (February 1), it reveals him celebrating, examining, questioning, and considering his divine text. His imagination was taken up by Galatians ("noble"), Ephesians ("wonderfully comprehensive and fine"), Hebrews ("superior . extraordinary"), James ("a sort of relation"), Revelations ("extraordinary'), and Genesis ("A strange account! What an extraordinary history! Extraordinary! Extraordinary!") during the period from February 16 to March 17.

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360 22. Arvid Shulenberger, Cooper's Theory of Fiction, Humanistic Studies 32 (Lawrence: University of Kansas Publications, 1955). 23. Donald A. Ringe, "Cooper's Last Novels, 18471850," Publications of The Modern Language Association of America 75.5 (1960) 583-590. 24. D. H. Lawrence, in Studies in Classic American Literature, states: "Fenimore Cooper has probably done more than any writer to present the Red Man to the white man. But Cooper's presentment is indeed a wish fulfillment. That is why Fenimore is such a success still" (37). House, in Cooper's Americans, notices that Cooper's Indian often "functions as a symbol" (68). William C. Spengemann, in The Adventurous Muse: The Poetics of American Fictio~l789-1900 (New Have~Yale University Press, 1977), believes that "Cooper seems to have sensed in savagery a power both to seduce and to save the white man .... To restore ... his nature, the white man would have to establish spiritual contact with ... the Indian" (108). 25. It may be superfluous to note that st. Peter, too, changed his name as an adult, being no longer known as Simon. 26. On March 10, Cooper "Finished Revelations, a most extraordinary book. It is genuine beyond a question, from internal evidence, if from no other" (Beard's Letters). The journal entry reveals what is apparently a lifelong interest in Revelations. In 1838 Cooper uses the "startling words from the Revelations, 'I heard a voice from Heaven saying unto me write'" (Homeward Bound; XXVII, 677) to create the climactic moment of a burial at sea. The practical Captain Truck is so moved by these words that he later confesses "that he thought he heard the very voice" of God when the words from Revelations were being read. 27. James Franklin Beard, "Cooper," in Fifteen American Authors, eds. Robert A. Rees and Earl N. Harbert (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1971) notes that "as Walter Sutton declared .. Cooper was a clumsy writer who never mastered the niceties of his craft ... who somehow, through exercise of a tremendous native energy, overcame his limitations and succeeded in creating the American epic'" (93). And George Dekker, in James Fenimore Cooper: The American

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361 Scott, wonders, "how can ... art that is often gauche, improbable, crowded, bigoted, puerile ... form ... an aesthetic whole which is intensely moving and convincing?" (170).

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CHAPTER EIGHT CONCLUSION An examination of the six main action types in Cooper's fictions and the two action ordering sequences that Cooper employs yields insights into those aspects of his writing for which he is justly known. While some of Cooper's characters, most notably Natty Bumppo, are memorable, and while many of the viewpoints, most usually polemical, that Cooper elaborated are integral, it is his action occurring in his scene which made him his reputation and continues to appeal to his readers. As this dissertation has shown, actions of normally brief duration, such as hunt, stalk, chase, and fight, usually function to interrupt the more extended actions. Such brief acts increase narrative interest and offer more immediate release of the narrative tension they engender. Actions of longer duration, including traveling resulting from quest or journey action, provide extended focus upon movement. Such extended actions admit narrative tension of a cumulative nature and may allow an entire narrative to be ordered upon the development of one central and unifying act. When Cooper offers many brief actions serially, with each act 362

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363 having closure, the narrative structures around a safe core location, which is most usually doubled. Such tales offer chained action, which is action moving out from and back to the central place. When more extended actions are used, the brief actions chronicled function to interrupt the extended ones, giving rise to a layered narrative. The layered narrative has the act itself, and the character who is the act-er, as a central structure. Both chained and layered action, as well as the type of non-static narrative here called movement that chronicles mimetic acts that do not function centrally, relieve the static portions, such as description, dialogue, summary, and authorial interjection, of the narrative. Because Cooper conceptualizes his works in a dramatic manner, he functions rather as the director and gives the reader the role of "audience'' who views the character/actors upon a stage setting. This conceptualization leads directly to the creation of a story set in and around a core location, a proscenium arch setting. All of Cooper's early works center in this manner. When Cooper moves beyond this method of structuring a narrative, he begins to build tale around the central ordering mechanism of action itself. This change in his method of presentation frees the characters from constraints of place and, of necessity,

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364 heightens the importance of the character who acts. The action itself becomes the essential aspect of the tale and the justification for the character's movement; the act itself becomes the seminal key to the world. With the action itself both being a mimetically integral portion of any tale and with it also being a way to render the meaning of the tale, it is evident that action, too, like so many other aspects of Cooper's fiction, is best understood symbolically, as an artistic component which explains the author's world. Cooper's first works reveal his use of chained action away from and back to the static central core location, the "stage setting" of his "scene." In Lionel Lincoln, Cooper conceptualizes a second action-ordering mechanism. He places the act itself at the center of the narrative. In this early text, the actions roles are assigned to the wrong characters, and the narrative does not cohere technically or aesthetically. However, as many of his subsequent books reveal, the technique of using action itself as the central ordering mechanism is equally effective as is the use of place-ordered structure. In Homeward Bound the extended chase action becomes the essence of the tale; the "conversations, however, were mere episodes of the great business," (Homeward Bound; VIII, 515) of the action itself. Yet as Home As

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365 Found shows, place-oriented narratives continue to be effectively utilized. Action structures highlight the characters who act; place structures give prominence to scene and to ideation. A mixture of the two offers Cooper a way to balance the components of a work. Because Cooper's habitual doubling technique includes examples of doubled action sequences, the action segments repeated in the dual texts Homeward Bound/ Home As Found and in the Home duo and The Pioneers, Cooper's use of action itself as a symbolic component is clearly seen as the various journey actions are studied. Study of the action shows that Cooper's artistic power and creative achievement are seriously misunderstood and undervalued. Because he places the act itself centrally, appraisals of his work which fail to evaluate intelligently this central issue fail also to evaluate properly the effectiveness of the works. Cooper is demonstrably a better writer than most critical appraisals indicate. He is a remarkably effective author when studied via an action approach. Cooper's technical mastery of his craft continues to improve even into his late period. In The Oak Openings, Cooper moves himself into the text. In the last chapter, Cooper vivifies himself as an actor on his own stage, and he becomes an act-er for the first, and only, time in the canon. The reason for this unique

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366 movement is understood when the journey action of the author/act-er is examined. In The Oak Openings Cooper seems to make clear the belief that, just as the "true" essence of the American character is act, so too is the "true" essence of Cooper the act. The actions taken by "right" Americans to create the nation are hallowed by God; the action taken by Cooper to create the saga is also divinely "right." It seems to be as true for the author as it is for the actors that, in the Cooperian cosmos, "Everybody was glad to move" (The Oak Openings; XXVII, 450)

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BIBLIOGRAPHY Adams, Percy G. Travel Literature and the Evolution of the Novel. Lexington: The University Press of Kentucky, 1983. Aldridge, A. Owen. "Fenimore Cooper and the Picaresque Tradition." Nineteenth Century Fiction 27 (1973 ) : 283-292. Allen, Dennis w. "' By All the Truth of Signs' : James Fenimore Cooper's The Last of the Mahicans." Studies in American FictTon9 (1981): 159-179. Anderson, George K. The Legend of the Wandering Jew. Providence: Brown University Press, 1965. Bank, Stanley, ed. American Romanticism:~ Shape for Fiction. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons, 1969. Barnett, Louise K. The Ignoble Savage: American Literary Racism, 1790-1890. Contributions in American Studies 18. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press, 1975. Barnum, H. L. The~ Unmasked, or, Memoirs of Enoch Crosby, Alias Harvey Birch, the Hero of ... The ~1828. Harrison, New York: Harbor Hill Books, 1975. Baym, Nina. "Melodramas of Beset Manhood: How T heor i es of American Fiction Exclude Women Authors." American Quarterly 33 (1981): 123-139. -----. "The Women of Cooper's Leatherstocking Tales." American Quarterly 23 (1971): 696-709. Beard, James Franklin. "Cooper." In Fifteen Amer i ca n Authors Before 1900. Eds. Robert A. Rees a nd Earl N. Harbert~adison: The U niversity of Wisconsin Press, 1971. 72-96. 367

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368 ----"Cooper and the Revolutionary Mythos." Early American Literature 11 (1976): 84-104. -----, ed. The Letters and Journals of James Fenimore Cooper.--6 vols. Cambridge: TheBelknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1968. Benet, William Rose. The Reader's Encyclopedia. 2nd ed. New York: Thomas Y. Crowell Company, 1965. Berbich, Joan D. Three Voices from Paumanok. Port Washington, New York: Ira :Y-:-Priedman Inc., 1969. Bewley, Marius. The Eccentric Design: Form in the Classic American Novel. New York: Columbia University Press, 1959. Bier, Jesse. "The Bisection of Cooper: Satanstoe as Prime Example." Texas studies in Literature and Language 9 (1968): 511-521. Bjornson, Richard. The Picaresque Hero in European Fiction. Madison: The University of Wisconsin Press, 1977. Blackburn, Alexander. The Myth of the Picaro. Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press, 1979. Blair, Walter, Theodore Hornberger and Randall Stewart. American Literature:~ Brief History. Glenview, Illinois: Scott, Foresman and Company, 1961. Brenner, Gerry. "Cooper's 'Composite Order' : The Pioneers as Structured Art." Studies in the Novel 2 ( 1970): 264-273. Brewer, Derek S. "The Lord of the Rings as Romance." In ~~~Tolkien, Scholar and Storyteller. Eds. Mary Salu and Robert T. Farrell. Ithaca, New York: Cornell University Press, 1979. 249-264. Brooks, Van Wyck. The World of Washington Irving. N ew York: E. P. Dutton & Company, 1944. Brown, Calvin s., Edwin M. Everett, and Robert L. Harrison. Masterworks of World Literature, 3rd ed. New York: Holt, Rinehartand Winston, Inc., 1970.

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369 Bryant, William Cullen. Discourse on t h e L if e, G eni u s, and Writings of J. Fenimore Coo p er. Precauti on By J. Fenimore Cooper. New York: D. A ppleton & Co., 1 8 7 3 ; rpt., Grosse Pointe, Michigan: Scholarl y Press, 1 96 8 -----. The Poetical Works of William C u llen Bryant. Ed Parke Goodwin. 1883.-New Y or k : Russell & R usse ll 1967. Vol. 1. Catholic Biblical Association of Am erica. T he N e w American Bible. New Y or k : P. J. K ene dy& S o n s, 1970. Clavel, Marcel. Fenimore Cooper: Sa V ie et Son O eu v re. Ai x -en-Provence: UniversitairedePro v ence, 1 9 3 8 Coleridge, Samuel T. The Annotated A ncie n t M ar in er. Ed. Martin Gardner-:-New Y or k : Bra m ha l l H o u se, 1965. ----Poetical Works. Ed. E rnest H artle y C o l e r idg e. London: Oxford Universit y Press, 1969. Cooper, James Fenimore. The American De m ocr a t. Baltimore: Penguin Books, 1969. Autobiography of~ PocketH a n d k erc h ief. New Y ork: Van Rees Press, 19 4 9. History of the Na v y of t h e Unit e d S ta t es of America. Philadelphia: Lea an d Bl a nch a rd 1847 Jack Tier. New York: H. M Ca ldw el l C o m pan y, n d Notions of the Americans; P i c k e d ~ EY Travelling Bachelor. Ne w Y o rk : Ung er, 1963 The Oak Openings. N ew Y or k : Th e C o-O p e rat iv e Pub l ishing Society, n. d Precaution. New Y or k : T h e Co O p e rati v e Publishing Society, n. d Satanstoe. New York: The CoOp era ti v e Publication Societ y n. d Wing and Wing. N ew Y or k : H M Caldw e ll Company, n. d ----T he Wor k s of Ja m es F e nimo re C oo p er 1 0 v o l s New Y or k : Peter Fenel o n Co llier 1 8 91 18 9 3

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370 Cowie, Alexander. The Rise of the American Novel. New York: American Book Compan~l951. Crane, Ronald. Critics and Criticism. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1952. Crews, Frederick C. The Sins of the Fathers. New York: Oxford University Press, 196~ Cruden, Alexander. Cruden's Compact Concordance. Ed. John Eadie. Grand Rapids: Zondervan Publishing House, 19 6 8. Cunningham, Mary E, ed. James Fenimore Cooper:~ Re Appraisal. Cooperstown, New York: New York State Historical Association, 1954. Darnell, Donald G. "'Visions of Hereditary Rank': The Loyalist in the Fiction of Hawthorne, Cooper, and Frederic." South Atlantic Bulletin 2.2 (1977): 45-54. Davie, Donald. The Heyday of Sir Walter Scott. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1961. Dekker, George. James Fenimore Cooper: The American Scott. New York: Barnes & Noble, 1967. Donaldson, Scott and Ann Masa. American Literature. New York: Barnes & Noble, 1978. Earnest, Ernest. Expatriates and Patriots: American Artists, Scholars, and Writers in Europe. Durham, North Carolina: Duke University Press, 196 8 Ewart, Mike. "Cooper and the American Revolution: The Non-Fiction." Journal of American Studies 2 ( 1977): 61-79. Fiedler, Leslie A. Love and Death in the American Novel. New York: Criterion Books, 196cf:'" Fletcher, Angus. Allegory: The Theory of~ sym b olic Mode. Ithaca, New York: Cornell University Press, 1964. Folsom, J. K. The American Western Novel. New Ha ven: Yale University Press, 1966.

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371 Fowler, William w. Women on the American Frontier: A valuable and AuthenticHistory. Hartford: s. s~ Scranton & Company, 1879. Franklin, Wayne. The New World of James Fenimore Cooper. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1982. Frederick, John T. The Darkened Sky: Nineteenth Century American Novelists and Religion. Notre Dame, Indiana: University of Notre Dame Press, 1969. Fu, James S. Mythic and Comic Aspects of the Quest. n.c.: Singapore University Press, 1977. Gaer, Joseph. The Legend of the Wandering Jew. New York: The New American Library, 1961. Gates, w. B. "Cooper's Indebtedness to Shakespeare." Publications of the Modern Language Association 67 (1952): 716-731.Gerlaeh, John. of God." "James Fenimore Cooper and the Kingdom Illinois Quarterly 35.4 (1973): 32-50. Gilman, William H. Melville's Early Life and Redburn. New York: New York University Press, 1951. Gove, Philip Babcock. The Imaginary Voyage in Prose Fiction. Columbia University Studies in English and Comparative Literature 152. New York: Arno Press, 1975. Grabo, Norman S. The Coincidental Art of Charles Brockden Brown. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1981. Greenberg, Robert M. "The Three-Day Chase: Multiplicity and Coherence in Moby-Dick." Emerson Society Quarterly 29 (1983): 91-98. Grossman, James. James Fenimore Cooper. The American Men of Letters Series. New York: William Sloane Associates, 1949. Haberly, David T. "Women and Indians: The Last of the Mohicans and the Captivity Tradition."~erica:n Quarterly 48 (1976): 431-443.

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372 Hammond, N. G. L. and H. H. Scullard. The O x ford Classical Dictionary. 2nd ed. Oxford: The Clarendon Press, 1970. Herberg, Will. "Riesman' s Lonely Man. Rev. of Individualism Reconsidered, by David Riesman. The Commonweal 3 September 1954: 538-540. Holy Bible, The King James Version. House, Kay Seymour. Cooper's Americans. Columbus: Ohio State University Press, 1965. Howard, Leon. Herman Melville:~ Biography. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1951. Hume, Robert D. "Charles Brockden Brown and the Uses of Gothicism A Reassessment." Emerson Society Quarterly 18 (1972): 10-18. Jacobi, Jolan. The Psychology of Jung. Trans. K. W. Bash. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1943. Kagle, Edna L., ed. America: Exploration and Travel. Bowling Green, Ohio: Bowling Green State Universit y Popular Press, 1979. Kasson, Joys. Artistic voyagers: Europe and the American Imagination in the Works of Irving, Allston, Cole, Cooper, and Hawthorne. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press, 1982. ----''Templeton Revisited: Social Criticism in The Pioneers and Home as Found." Studies in the Novel 9 (1977):54~4. -Kaul, A. N. The American Vision: Actual and Ideal Society in Nineteenth Century Fiction. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1963. Keiser, Albert. The Indian in American Literature. New York: Oxford University Press, 1933. Kligerman, Jack. "Style and Form in James Fenimore Cooper's Homeward Bound and Home as Found." Jo u rna l of Narrative Technique 4 (19~ 45-61. Kolodny, Annette. The Lay of the Land: M etaphor as Experience and History in American Life~ Letters. Chapel Hill: The University of N ort h Carolina Press, 1975.

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373 Lawrence, D. H. Studies in Classic American Literature. London: Martin Secker, 1933. Leisy, Ernest E. The American Historical Novel. Norman: The University of Oklahoma Press, 1950. Lewis, R. w. B. The American Adam: Innocence, Tragedy, and Tradition in the Nineteenth Century. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1955. ----The Picaresque Saint: Representative Figures in Contemporary Fiction. New York: J.B. Lippincott Company, 1959. Logan, Sister Eugenia. A Concordance to the Poetry of Samuel Taylor Coleridge. Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, Indiana: Privately Printed, 1940. Loshe, Lillie Deming. The Early American Novel. New York: Columbia University Press, 1907. Lowes, John Livingston. The Road to Xanadu:~ Study in the ways of the Imagination-:Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1927. Lynen, John F. The Design of the Present: Essays on Time and Form in American Literature. New Haven: Yale UniversityPress, 1969. Martin, Terence. "Beginnings and Endings in the Leatherstocking Tales." Nineteenth Century Fiction 33 (1978): 69-87. "Surviving on the Frontier: The Doubled Consciousness of Natty Bumppo.'' South Atlantic Quarterly 75 (1976): 447-459. Marx, Leo. The Machine in the Garden. 1964. New York: Oxford University Press, 1970. Maxwell, E. S. American Fiction: The Intellectual Background. New York: Columbia University Press, 1963. McAleer, John J. "Biblical Analogy in the Leatherstocking Tales." Nineteenth Century Fiction 17.3 (1962): 217-235. McCarthy, Paul, ed. Long Fiction of the American Renaissance. Hartford, Connecticut: Transcendental Books, 1974.

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374 Mcclintock, John and James strong. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological, and Ecclesiastical Literature. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Book House, 1981. Mcwilliams, John P. "The Fictions of Merry Mount." American Quarterly 29 (1977): 3-30. Mesrole, Harrison T., Walter Sutton and Brom Weber. American Literature: Tradition and Innovation. 3 vols. Lexington, Massachusetts: D. C. Heath and Company, 1969. Vol. 1. Moore, Arthur K. The Frontier Mind. 1957. New York: McGraw-Hill Company, 1963. Morgan, Joseph. The History of the Kingdom of Basaruah. 1715. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1946. "Nathaniel Hawthorne." Eliza Cook's Journal 7 (June 19, 1852): 121-124. Nelson, Carl. "Cooper's Verbal Faction: The Hierarchy of Rhetoric, Voice, and Silence in The Prairie." West Virginia Philological Papers 24(1977): 37-47. Nevins, Allan. The Leatherstocking Saga. By James Fenimore Cooper. New York: Pantheon Books, 1954. Nevius, Blake. Cooper's Landscapes: An Essay on the Picturesque Vision. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1976. Noble, David W. The Eternal Adam and the New World Garden. New York: George Braziller, 1968. O'Conner, William Van. The Grotesque: An American Genre and Other Essays. Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press, 1962. Papashvily, Helen Waite. All the Happy Endings. New York: Harper & Brothers, 1956. Parkman, Francis. "James Fenimore Cooper." N orth American Review 154 (January 1852 ) : 147-161.

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375 Paul, Jay S. "The Education of Elizabeth Temple." Studies in the Novel 9 (1977): 187-194. "Home as Cherished: The Theme of Family in Fenimore Cooper." Studies in the Novel 5 (1973): 39-51. Pearce, Richard. The Novel in Motion. Columbus: Ohio State University Press,1983. Peck, H. Daniel. "A Repossession of America: The Revolution in Cooper's Trilogy of Nautical Romances." studies in Romanticism 15 (1976): 589605. World .e.y Itself: The Pastoral Moment in Cooper's Fiction. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1977. Person, Leland S., Jr. "Cooper's The Pioneers and Leatherstocking's Historical Function." Emerson Society Quarterly 25 (1979): 1-10. ----"Home as Found and the Leatherstocking Series." Emersor1Society Quarterly 27 (1981): 170-180. Petter, Henri. The Early American Novel. Columbus: Ohio State University Press, 1971. Phelps, William Lyon. Some Makers of American Literature. 1922.~c.: Norwood, 1977. Philbrick, Thomas. "Cooper's The Pioneers: Origins and Structure." Publications of the Modern Language Association of America 79 (1964): 579-593. James Fenimore Cooper and the Development of American Sea Fiction. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1961. "The Last of the Mahicans and Sounds of Discord.~eric~Literature 43 (1971): 25-41. Porte, Joel. The Romance in America: Studies in Cooper, Poe, Hawthorn"e,"" Melville, and James. Middletown, Connecticut: Wesleyan University Press, 1969.

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376 Quinn, Arthur Hobson. American Fiction. New York: Appleton-Century-Crofts, Inc., 1964. Railton, Stephen. Fenimore Cooper:~ Study of His Life and Imagination. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1978. Revell, Peter. Quest in Modern American Poetry. Totowa, New Jersey: Barnes & Noble Books and Vision Press, 1981. Richardson, Robert D., Jr. Myth and Literature in the American Renaissance. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1978. Ringe, Donald A. American Gothic: Imagination and Reason in Nineteenth-Century Fiction. Le x ington: The University Press of Kentucky, 1982. ----"Cooper's Last Novels, 1847-1850." Publications of the Modern Language Association of America 75.5 ( 1960): 583-590. James Fenimore Cooper. New York: Twayne Publishers, 1962. Ross, Morton L. "Cooper's The Pioneers and the Ethnographic Impulse" American Studies 16.2 ( 1975): 29-40. Schriber, Mary S. "Toward Daisy Miller: Cooper's Idea of the American Girl." Studies in the Novel 13 (1981): 237-249. Seelye, John. "Some Green Thoughts on a Green Theme." Triguarterly 23-24 (1972): 596-599. Shapiro, Charles, ed. American Novels. Press, 1958. Twel v e Original Essays on Great Detroit: Wayne State Uni v ersity Shinn, Roger L. The Search for Identity. New York: Harper & Row7964. Shulenberger, Arvid. Cooper's Theory of Fiction. Humanistic Studies 32. Lawrence:University of Kansas Publications, 1955.

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377 Simonson, Harold P. The Closed Frontier: Studies in American Literary Tragedy. New York: Holt, Rinehart and Company, 1971. Slotkin, Richard. Regeneration Through Violence: The Mythology of the American Frontier, 1600-1860. Middletown, Connecticut: Wesleyan University Press, 1973. Smith, Henry Nash. Virgin Land: The American West as Symbol and Myth. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1950. Snell, George. The Shapers of American Fiction, 17981947. New York: Cooper Square Publishers, 1961. Soldati, Joseph A. "The Americanization of Faust: A Study of Charles Brockden Brown's Wieland." Emerson Society Quarterly 20 (1974): 1-14. Spengemann, William C. The Adventurous Muse: The Poetics of ArnericanFiction, 1789-1900. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1977. Spevack, Marvin. The Harvard Concordance to Shakespeare. Cambridge, Massachusetts: The Belknap Press, 1973. Spiller, Robert E. James Fenimore Cooper. Pamphlets on American Writers 48. st Paul, Minnesota: North Central Publishing Company, 1965. -----, ed. James Fenimore Cooper: Representative Selections, with Introduction, Biography, and Notes. New York: American Books Company, 1936. The Oblique Light: Studies in American Literary History and Biography. New York: McMillan Company, 1968. Spiller, Robert E. and Philip C. Blackburn. A Descriptive Bibliography of the Writings-of James Fenimore Cooper. New York: R.R. Bowker Company, 1934. Spurgeon, Caroline F. E. Shakespeare's Imagery and What It Tells Us. New York: MacMillan Co., 1935.

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378 Steinbrink, Jeffery. "Cooper's Romance of the Revolution: Lionel Lincoln and the Lessons of Failure." Early American Literature 11 (1976): 336-343. Stout, Janis P. The Journey Narrative in American Literature: Patterns and Departures. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press, 1983. Sundquist, Eric J. "Incest and Imitation in Cooper's Home as Found." Nineteenth-Century Fiction 32 (1977): 261-284. Todorov, Tzvetan. "All Against Humanity. Rev. of Textual Power: Literary Theory and the Teaching of English, by Robert Scholes. Times Literary Supplement 4 October 1985: 1093. Twain, Mark. "Fenimore Cooper's Literary Off ens es." In The Shock of Recognition. Ed. Edmund Wilson. New York: Farrar, Straus & Co., 1955. 582-594i. Vandiver, Edwaid P. "James Fenimore Cooper and Shakespeare." Shakespearean Association Bulletin 15 (1940): 11-117. Wagenknecht, Edward Cavalcade of the American Novel. New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1952. Walker, Warren S. James Fenimore Cooper: An Introduction and Interpretation. NewYork: Barnes & Noble, 1963-.Plots and Characters in the Fiction of James Fenimore Cooper. Hamden-,-Connecticut: Archon Books, 1978. Weidman, Betty S. "White Man's Red Man: A Penitential Reading of Four American Novels." Modern Language Studies 4.2 (1974): 14-26. Weldon, Roberta F. "Cooper's The Deerslayer and the Indian Myth of Nanabozbo." New York Folklore 2 (1976): 61-67. -Welsh, Alexander. The Hero of the Waverly Novels. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1963. Whittier, John Greenleaf. The Writings of John Greenleaf Whittier. New York: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1892. Vol. 1.

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r 379 Williams, J. Gary. "Cooper and European Catholicism: A Reading of The Heidenmauer." Emerson Society Quarterly 22 (1976): 149-158. Williams, William. Mr. Penrose: The Journal of Penrose, Seaman. 1825. Bloomington:--yjidiana University Press, 1969. Winters, Yvor. In Defense of Reason. 1938. New York: William Morrow & Company, 1947. Wright, Mary C. "Economic Development and Native American Women in the Early Nineteenth Century." American Quarterly 33 (1981): 64-82. Young, Philip. Revolutionary Ladies. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1977.

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BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH Randy Mazur Hunter Longino was born December 25, 1950, in Detroit, Michigan. She grew up in Atlanta, Georgia, and has also lived in Chicago, Houston, and several smaller communities in the South. She graduated from the University of Georgia magna cum laude with a B.A. in 1973 and an M.A. in 1976. She has read seriously since she was nine years old, written creatively since she was twelve, and taught successfully for a decade in a community college and two universities. She plans to continue reading, writing, teaching, and raising two sons. 380 4

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I certify that I have read this stud y and that in m y opinion it conforms to acceptable standards of scholarl y presentation and is fully adequate, in scope and qualit y as a dissertation for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy. John B; Pickatd, C h air m an Professor of E nglish I certify that I have read this stud y an d that in my opinion it conforms to acceptable standards of scholarl y presentation and is fully adequate, in scope and qualit y, as a dissertation for the degree of Doctor of Philosop hy -; ,. / i { ~ .. I ? ~ I ..__ t." I t l Motley P. Dea k in Professor of E n glish I certify that I have read this study and that in my opinion it conforms to acceptable standards of scholarl y presentation and is fully adequate, in scope and qu a lit y as a dissertation for the degree of Doctor of P h ilosop hy I { / I Bertram W y at t Bro wn Professor of H istor y I certify that I have read this stud y and that in my opinion it conforms to acceptable standards of scholarl y presentation and is fully adequate, in scope and qualit y as a dissertation for the degree of Doctor of P hiloso phy John Seel y e Professor of E ngli s h

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I certify that I have read this study and that in my opinion it conforms to acceptable standards of scholarly presentation and is fully adequate, in score and quality, as a dissertation for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy. I I 1/1 l 1 J'\ ~ ~-C I i V __ '-. Rob~rt S. Thotns,9n-"' Associate Professor of English This dissertation was submitted to the Graduate Faculty of the Department of English in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and to the Graduate School and was accepted as partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy. August 1987 Dean, Graduate School

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UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 11111 IIIIII Ill Ill lllll lllll II IIIIII IIII II IIIIII II 111111111111111 3 1262 08553 4799