From the Introduction to the first issue.
…Our plan embraces much more than criticism; were it not so, our criticism would be naught….We do not wish to say pretty or curious things, or to reiterate a few propositions in varied forms, but, if we can, to give expression to that spirit which lifts men to a higher platform, restores to them the religious sentiment, brings them worthy aims and pure pleasures, purges the inward eye, makes life less desultory, and, through raising man to the level of nature, takes away its melancholy from the landscape, and reconciles the practical with the speculative powers. But perhaps we are telling our little story too gravely. There are always great arguments at hand for a true action, even for the writing of a few pages….
The Dial Vol. I, No. 1, July, 1840.