Page:Percival Lowell - an afterglow.djvu/13

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FOREWORD

THE personal tribute borne on the pages of this character sketch is given a sub-title which attracts me as a happily chosen metaphor of description. I have seen an Alpine peak disappear with the fading of day, but soon coming into light again in the deepening evening, radiant with cherished light. Percival Lowell was among men as of the heights, and, as here, memory of him endures.

Dr. Lowell, especially in the latter part of his aspiring life, became a notable pioneer in the advance of astronomical science; and, through his daring ventures in planetary study, he made gains which competent scholars believe are of the highest value for man in his study of the universe. When I began my acquaintance with him, in Japan, many years ago, Dr. Lowell's mental quest was impelled in various directions, particularly into psychological interpretations of the Oriental folk among whom we were both resident. Already he had published his profound research, "The Soul of the Far East"; his "Esoteric Shinto" was then in the making. But even at that time he had been led far forward under the later master-interest of his life. His characteristic longing to know and to interpret the dynamic and vital evolution of other