More important, his purpose is to transume
or out-do Gibbon by showing how origins as Gibbon might have understood them, origins as deep-rooted, underlying, or necessary causes, are a fiction.
The development of "The Child in the House," both as narrative and as projected consciousness, culminates in this figure; and of course this "house of thought" is reminiscent of a number of other houses in Pater's work, an ideal "House Beautiful" that transumes
not only John Bunyan's trope (as Carolyn Williams has shown (14)), but the general Victorian effort to reify and consolidate the finest in known culture, Matthew Arnold's "best that has been known and thought in the world." (15)
"Hawthorne uses earlier texts to romanticize the American landscape but then transumes
those texts by way of the landscape, as if it had been self-empowered all along" (53).