P-BOOKS • The Works of Charles and Mary Lamb (Vol. 6) (2023)

Soften down the Title in the Book to

"Defect of the Imaginative Faculty in Artists."

Consult Dilke.

[Lamb's Elia essay "Barrenness of the Imaginative Faculty in the Production of Modern Art," intended originally for The Englishman's Magazine, was partly printed by Forster in The Reflector and finally printed in full in The Athenaeum in January and February, 1833. The reference to Don Quixote is at the end. Moxon was already printing the Last Essays of Elia.

"Consult Dilke" was a favourite phrase with Lamb and Hood and, long before, with Keats.]



[P.M. Jan. 3(1833).]

Be sure and let me have the Atheneum—or, if they don't appear, the Copy back again. I have no other.

I am glad you are introduced to Rickman, cultivate the introduction. I will not forget to write to him.

I want to see Blackwood, but not without you.

We are yet Emma-less.

And so that is all I can remember.

This is a corkscrew.

[Here is a florid corkscrew.]

C. Lamb, born 1775 flourished about the year 1832.

C.L. Fecit.—

[Lamb refers still to the "Barrenness of Imagination" series.

There are several scraps addressed by Lamb to Forster in the South Kensington Museum; but they are undated and of little importance. I append one or two here:—]



[No date.]


Go to Dilke's, or Let Mockson, and ax him to add this to what I sent him a few days since, or to continue it the week after. The Plantas &c. are capital.


Come down with M. and Dante and L.E.L. on Sunday.


I don't mean at his House, but the Atheneum office. Send it there. Hand shakes.

[The Plantas would probably be a reference to the family of Joseph Plantas of the British Museum. M. and Dante and L.E.L. would be Moxon, Cary and Letitia Landon, the poetess, to whom Forster was for a while engaged.

This letter, up to a certain point, was repeated as follows. It also is at South Kensington:—]



[No date.]

I wish youd go to Dilke's, or let Mockson, and ax him to add this to what I sent him a few days since, or to continue it the week after. The Plantas &c. are capital. Come down with Procter and Dante on Sunday. I send you the last proof—not of my friendship. I knew you would like the title. I do thoroughly. The Last Essays of Elia keeps out any notion of its being a second volume.



[No date.]

There was a talk of Richmond on Sunday but we were hampered with an unavoidable engagement that day, besides that I wish to show it you when the woods are in full leaf. Can you have a quiet evening here to night or tomorrow night? We are certainly at home.

Yours C. LAMB.




[P.M. Jan. 24, 1833.]

Dear Murray! Moxon I mean.—I am not to be making you pay postage every day, but cannot let pass the congratulations of sister, brother, and "Silk Cloak," all most cordial on your change of place. Rogers approving, who can demur? Tell me when you get into Dover St. and what the No. is—that I may change foolscap for gilt, and plain Mr. for Esqr. I shall Mister you while you stay—

If you are not too great to attend to it, I wish us to do without the Sonnets of Sydney: 12 will take up as many pages, and be too palpable a fill up. Perhaps we may leave them out, retaining the article, but that is not worth saving. I hope you liked my Cervantes Article which I sent you yesterday.

Not an inapt quotation, for your fallen predecessor in Albemarle Street, to whom you must give the coup du main

Murray, long enough his country's pride.


[Then, written at the bottom of the page] there's [and written on the next page] there's nothing over here.

[Moxon was moving from 64 New Bond Street to 33 Dover Street.

"Silk Cloak" would, I imagine, probably be a name for Emma Isola.

"The Sonnets of Sydney"—Lamb's Elia essay on this subject. It was not omitted from the Last Essay, which Moxon was to publish, and eleven sonnets were quoted.

"Your fallen predecessor." It is hardly needful to say that Moxon made very little difference to Murray's business. The line is from Pope's Sixth Epistle of the First Book of Horace. To Mr. Murray, who afterwards was Earl of Mansfield.]



[Feb. 10. P.M. Feby. 11, 1833.]

I wish you would omit "by the author of Elia," now, in advertising that damn'd "Devil's Wedding."

I had sneaking hopes you would have dropt in today—tis my poor birthday. Don't stay away so. Give Forster a hint—you are to bring your brother some day—sisters in better weather.

Pray give me one line to say if you receiv'd and forwarded Emma's pacquet to Miss Adams,

and how Dover St. looks.


Is there no Blackwood this month?

[Added on cover:—]

What separation will there be between the friend's preface, and THE ESSAYS? Should not "Last Essays &c." head them? If 'tis too late, don't mind. I don't care a farthing about it.

["What separation"—the Last Essays of Elia were preceded by "A Character of the Late Elia."

Here should come a letter from Lamb to Louisa Badams, dated February 15, 1833. Lamb begins with a further reference to the Enfield murder. He says that his sister and himself have got through the Inferno with the help of Cary, and Mary is beginning Tasso.]



[No date. Feb., 1833.]

My dear M.—I send you the last proof—not of my friendship— pray see to the finish.

I think you will see the necessity of adding those words after "Preface"—and "Preface" should be in the "contents-table"—

I take for granted you approve the title. I do thoroughly— Perhaps if you advertise it in full, as it now stands, the title page might have simply the Last Essays of Elia, to keep out any notion of its being a second vol.—

Well, I wish us luck heartily for your sake who have smarted by me.—



February, 1833.

My dear T.,—Now cannot I call him Serjeant; what is there in a coif? Those canvas-sleeves protective from ink, when he was a law-chit—a Chittyling, (let the leathern apron be apocryphal) do more 'specially plead to the Jury Court of old memory. The costume (will he agnize it?) was as of a desk-fellow or Socius Plutei. Methought I spied a brother!

That familiarity is extinct for ever. Curse me if I can call him Mr. Serjeant—except, mark me, in company. Honour where honour is due; but should he ever visit us, (do you think he ever will, Mary?) what a distinction should I keep up between him and our less fortunate friend, H.C.R.! Decent respect shall always be the Crabb's—but, somehow, short of reverence.

Well, of my old friends, I have lived to see two knighted: one made a judge, another in a fair way to it. Why am I restive? why stands my sun upon Gibeah?

Variously, my dear Mrs. Talfourd, (I can be more familiar with her!) Mrs. Serjeant Talfourd,—my sister prompts me—(these ladies stand upon ceremonies)—has the congratulable news affected the members of our small community. Mary comprehended it at once, and entered into it heartily. Mrs. W—— was, as usual, perverse—wouldn't, or couldn't, understand it. A Serjeant? She thought Mr. T. was in the law. Didn't know that he ever 'listed.

Emma alone truly sympathised. She had a silk gown come home that very day, and has precedence before her learned sisters accordingly.

We are going to drink the health of Mr. and Mrs. Serjeant, with all the young serjeantry—and that is all that I can see that I shall get by the promotion.

Valete, et mementote amici quondam vestri humillimi.


[Talfourd, who had been pupil of Joseph Chitty, had just become a serjeant.

"H.C.R."—Crabb Robinson.

"My old friends." Stoddart and Tuthill were knighted; Barron Field was a judge; Talfourd was to become both a knight and a judge.

"Mrs. W——." Mrs. Westwood, I suppose.]



[No date. 1833.]

D'r M. let us see you & your Brother on Sunday—The Elias are beautifully got up. Be cautious how you name the probability of bringing 'em ever out complete—till these are gone off. Everybody'd say "O I'll wait then."

An't we to have a copy of the Sonnets—

Mind, I shall insist upon having no more copies: only I shall take 3 or 4 more of you at trade price. I am resolute about this. Yours ever—



[P.M. Feb., 1833.]



In Christian world MARY the garland wears! REBECCA sweetens on a Hebrew's ear; Quakers for pure PRISCILLA are more clear; And the light Gaul by amorous NINON swears. Among the lesser lights how LUCY shines! What air of fragrance ROSAMUND throws round! How like a hymn doth sweet CECILIA sound! Of MARTHAS, and of ABIGAILS, few lines Have bragg'd in verse. Of coarsest household stuff Should homely JOAN be fashioned. But can You BARBARA resist, or MARIAN? And is not CLARE for love excuse enough? Yet, by my faith in numbers, I profess, These all, than Saxon EDITH, please me less.

Many thanks for the life you have given us—I am perfectly satisfied. But if you advert to it again, I give you a delicate hint. Barbara S—— shadows under that name Miss Kelly's early life, and I had the Anecdote beautifully from her.

[The sonnet, addressed to Edith Southey, was printed in The Athenaeum for March 9, 1833.

For "Barbara S——" see Vol. II. of the present edition.]



[No date. Early 1833.]

No writing, and no word, ever passed between Taylor, or Hessey, and me, respecting copy right. This I can swear. They made a volume at their own will, and volunteerd me a third of profits, which came to L30, which came to Bilk, and never came back to me. Proctor has acted a friendly part—when did he otherwise? I am very sorry to hear Mrs. P—— as I suppose is not so well. I meditated a rallying epistle to him on his Gemini—his two Sosias, accusing him of having acted a notable piece of duplicity. But if his partner in the double dealing suffers—it would be unseasonable. You cannot rememb'r me to him too kindly. Your chearful letter has relieved us from the dumps; all may be well. I rejoice at your letting your house so magnificently. Talfourd's letter may be directed to him "On the Western Circuit."* That is the way, send it. With Blackwood pray send Piozziana and a Literary Gazette if you have one. The Piozzi and that shall be immed'tly return'd, and I keep Mad. Darblay for you eventually, a longwinded reader at present having use of it.

The weather is so queer that I will not say I expect you &c.—but am prepared for the pleasure of seeing you when you can come.

We had given you up (the post man being late) and Emma and I have 20 times this morning been to the door in the rain to spy for him coming.

Well, I know it is not all settled, but your letter is chearful and cheer-making.

We join in triple love to you.

ELIA & Co.

I am settled in any case to take at Bookseller's price any copies I have more. Therefore oblige me by sending a copy of Elia to Coleridge and B. Barton, and enquire (at your leisure of course) how I can send one, with a letter, to Walter Savage Landor. These 3 put in your next bill on me. I am peremptory that it shall be so. These are all I can want.

*Is it the Western? he goes to Reading &c.

[John Taylor, representing the firm of Taylor & Hessey, seems to have set up a claim of copyright in those essays in the Last Essays of Elia that were printed in the London Magazine. For Procter's part, see next letter.

Piozziana; or, Recollections of the late Mrs. Piozzi (Johnson's Mrs. Thrale), was published in 1833. It was by the Rev. E. Mangin.

Mad. Darblay would be The Memoirs of Dr. Burney, 1832, by his daughter Madame d'Arblay (Admiral Burney's niece). The book was severely handled in the Quarterly for April, 1833.

The following letter, which is undated, seems to refer to the difficulty mentioned above:—]



Enfield, Monday.

Dear P——, I have more than L30 in my house, and am independent of quarter-day, not having received my pension.

Pray settle, I beg of you, the matter with Mr. Taylor. I know nothing of bills, but most gladly will I forward to you that sum for him, for Mary is very anxious that M[oxon] may not get into any litigation. The money is literally rotting in my desk for want of use. I should not interfere with M——, tell M—— when you see him, but Mary is really uneasy; so lay it to that account, not mine.

Yours ever and two evers,


Do it smack at once, and I will explain to M—— why I did it. It is simply done to ease her mind. When you have settled, write, and I'll send the bank notes to you twice, in halves.

Deduct from it your share in broken bottles, which, you being capital in your lists, I take to be two shillings. Do it as you love Mary and me. Then Elia's himself again.

(Video) Mary had a Little Lamb - 3D Animation English Nursery rhyme for children with lyrics



[March 6, 1833.]

Dear Friend—Thee hast sent a Christian epistle to me, and I should not feel clear if I neglected to reply to it, which would have been sooner if that vain young man, to whom thou didst intrust it, had not kept it back. We should rejoice to see thy outward man here, especially on a day which should not be a first day, being liable to worldly callers in on that day. Our little book is delayed by a heathenish injunction, threatened by the man Taylor. Canst thou copy and send, or bring with thee, a vanity in verse which in my younger days I wrote on friend Aders' pictures? Thou wilt find it in the book called the Table Book.

Tryphena and Tryphosa, whom the world calleth Mary and Emma, greet you with me.


6th of 3d month 4th day.

[On this letter is written by Hone in pencil: "This acknowledges a note from me to C.L. written in January preceding and sent by young Will Hazlitt. Received in my paralysis. March, 1833."

On this day Lamb gave Hone two books with the same inscription in each—very tipsily written.]



[P.M. March 19, 1833.]

I shall expect Forster and two Moxons on Sunday, and hope for Procter.

I am obliged to be in town next Monday. Could we contrive to make a party (paying or not is immaterial) for Miss Kelly's that night, and can you shelter us after the play, I mean Emma and me? I fear, I cannot persuade Mary to join us.

N.B. I can sleep at a public house.

Send an Elia (mind, I insist on buying it) to T. Manning Esq. at Sir G. Tuthill's Cavendish Square.


[Miss Kelly was then giving an entertainment called "Dramatic Recollections" at the Strand Theatre.]



[No date. ? Spring, 1833.]

One o Clock.

This instant receiv'd, this instant I answer your's—Dr. Cresswell has one copy, which I cannot just now re-demand, because at his desire I have sent a "Satan" to him, which when he ask'd for, I frankly told him, was imputed a lampoon on HIM!!! I have sent it him, and cannot, till we come to explanation, go to him or send—

But on the faith of a Gentleman, you shall have it back some day for another. The 3 I send. I think 2 of the blunders perfectly immaterial. But your feelings, and I fear pocket, is every thing. I have just time to pack this off by the 2 o Clock stage. Yours till me meet

At all events I behave more gentlemanlike than Emma did, in returning the copies.

Yours till we meet—DO COME.

Bring the Sonnets—

Why not publish 'em?—or let another Bookseller?

[Dr. Cresswell was vicar of Edmonton. Having married the daughter of a tailor—or so Mr. Fuller Russell states in his account of a conversation with Lamb in Notes and Queries—he was in danger of being ribaldly associated with Satan's matrimonial adventures in Lamb's ballad. I cannot explain to what book Lamb refers: possibly to the Last Essays of Elia, which Moxon, having found errors in, wished to withdraw, substituting another. The point probably cannot be cleared up. The sonnets would be Moxon's own, which he had printed privately (see a later letter).]



[P.M. March 30, 1833.]

D'r M. Emma and we are delighted with the Sonnets, and she with her nice Walton. Mary is deep in the novel. Come as early as you can. I stupidly overlookd your proposal to meet you in Green Lanes, for in some strange way I burnt my leg, shin-quarter, at Forster's;* it is laid up on a stool, and Asbury attends. You'll see us all as usual, about Taylor, when you come.

Yours ever


*Or the night I came home, for I felt it not bad till yesterday. But I scarce can hobble across the room.

I have secured 4 places for night: in haste.

Mary and E. do not dream of any thing we have discussed.

[I fancy that the last sentence refers to an offer for Miss Isola's hand which Moxon had just made to Lamb.]



[No date. Spring, 1833.]

Dear M. many thanks for the Books; the Faust I will acknowledge to the Author. But most thanks for one immortal sentence, "If I do not cheat him, never trust me again." I do not know whether to admire most, the wit or justness of the sentiment. It has my cordial approbation. My sense of meum and tuum applauds it. I maintain it, the eighth commandment hath a secret special reservation, by which the reptile is exempt from any protection from it; as a dog, or a nigger, he is not a holder of property. Not a ninth of what he detains from the world is his own. Keep your hands from picking and stealing is no ways referable to his acquists. I doubt whether bearing false witness against thy neighbor at all contemplated this possible scrub. Could Moses have seen the speck in vision? An ex post facto law alone could relieve him, and we are taught to expect no eleventh commandment. The out-law to the Mosaic dispensation!—unworthy to have seen Moses' behind—to lay his desecrating hands upon Elia! Has the irriverent ark-toucher been struck blind I wonder—? The more I think of him, the less I think of him. His meanness is invisible with aid of solar microscope, my moral eye smarts at him. The less flea that bites little fleas! The great Beast! the beggarly nit!

More when we meet.

Mind, you'll come, two of you—and couldn't you go off in the morning, that we may have a daylong curse at him, if curses are not dis-hallowed by descending so low? Amen.

Maledicatur in extremis.

[Abraham Hayward's translation of Faust was published by Moxon in February, 1833. Lamb's letter of thanks was said by the late Edmund Yates to be a very odd one. I have not seen it.

We may perhaps assume that Moxon's reply to Lamb's letter stating that Taylor's claim had been paid contained the "immortal sentence."

"Not a ninth." A tailor (Taylor) is only a ninth of a man.

"The less flea." Remembering Swift's lines in "On Poetry, a Rhapsody":—

So, naturalists observe, a flea Has smaller fleas that on him prey; And these have smaller still to bite 'em, And so proceed ad infinitum.]



[No date. ? March, 1833.]

Swallow your damn'd dinner and your brandy and water fast—

& come immediately

I want to take Knowles in to Emma's only female friend for 5 minutes only, and we are free for the even'g.

I'll do a Prologue.

[The prologue was for Sheridan Knowles' play "The Wife." Lamb wrote both prologue and epilogue (see Vol. IV.).]



[No date. ? April 10, 1833.]

Dear M. The first Oak sonnet, and the Nightingale, may show their faces in any Annual unblushing. Some of the others are very good.

The Sabbath too much what you have written before.

You are destined to shine in Sonnets, I tell you.

Shall we look for you Sunday, we did in vain Good Friday [April 5].

[A signature was added by Mrs. Moxon for Mr. Frederick Locker-Lampson, evidently from another letter:—]

Your truest friend




[No date. April, 1833.]

D'r Sir, I read your note in a moment of great perturbation with my Landlady and chuck'd it in the fire, as I should have done an epistle of Paul, but as far as my Sister recalls the import of it, I reply. The Sonnets (36 of them) have never been printed, much less published, till the other day,* save that a few of 'em have come out in Annuals. Two vols., of poetry of M.'s, have been publish'd, but they were not these. The "Nightingale" has been in one of the those gewgaws, the Annuals; whether the other I sent you has, or not, penitus ignoro. But for heaven's sake do with 'em what you like.



*The proof sheets only were in my hand about a fortnight ago.

[Moxon's sonnets were reviewed, probably by Lamb, in The Athenaeum for April 13, 1833. The sonnet to the nightingale (see above) was quoted. This review will be found in Vol. I. of the present edition.]



[P.M. April (16), 1833.]

Dear Mrs. Ayrton, I do not know which to admire most, your kindness, or your patience, in copying out that intolerable rabble of panegryc from over the Atlantic. By the way, now your hand is in, I wish you would copy out for me the l3th l7th and 24th of Barrow's sermons in folio, and all of Tillotson's (folio also) except the first, which I have in Manuscript, and which, you know, is Ayrton's favorite. Then—but I won't trouble you any farther just now. Why does not A come and see me? Can't he and Henry Crabbe concert it? 'Tis as easy as lying is to me. Mary's kindest love to you both.


[The letter is accompanied by a note in the writing of William Scrope Ayrton, the son of William Ayrton, copied from Mrs. Ayrton's Diary:—

"March 17, 1833.—Copied a critique upon Elia's works from the Mirror of America a sort of news paper."]



[P.M. April 25, 1833.]

My dear Moxon, We perfectly agree in your arrangement. It has quite set my sister's mind at rest. She will come with you on Sunday, and return at eve, and I will make comfortable arrangem'ts with the Buffams. We desire to have you here dining unWestwooded, and I will try and get you a bottle of choice port. I have transferr'd the stock I told you to Emma. The plan of the Buffams steers admirably between two niceties. Tell Emma we thoroughly approve it. As our damnd Times is a day after the fair, I am setting off to Enfield Highway to see in a morning paper (alas! the Publican's) how the play ran. Pray, bring 4 orders for Mr. Asbury—undated.

In haste (not for neglect)

Yours ever



[Lamb evidently refers to Moxon's engagement to Miss Isola being now settled.

The play was Sheridan Knowles' "The Wife," produced on April 24.

The Buffams were the landladies of the house in Southampton Buildings, where Lamb lodged in town.]



[P.M. April 27, 1833.]

Dear M. Mary and I are very poorly. Asbury says tis nothing but influenza. Mr. W. appears all but dying, he is delirious. Mrs. W. was taken so last night, that Mary was obliged at midnight to knock up Mrs. Waller to come and sit up with her. We have had a sick child, who sleeping, or not sleeping, next me with a pasteboard partition between, killed my sleep. The little bastard is gone. My bedfellows are Cough and cramp, we sleep 3 in a bed. Domestic arrangem'ts (Blue Butcher and all) devolve on Mary. Don't come yet to this house of pest and age. We propose when E. and you agree on the time, to come up and meet her at the Buffams', say a week hence, but do you make the appointm't. The Lachlans send her their love.

I do sadly want those 2 last Hogarths—and an't I to have the Play?

Mind our spirits are good and we are happy in your happinesses.


Our old and ever loves to dear Em.

["Mr. W." was Mr. Westwood.—I know nothing of the Lachlans.—The Play would be "The Wife" probably.—Miss Isola was, I imagine, staying with the Moxons.]



May 7, 1833.

By a strange occurrence we have quitted Enfield for ever. Oh! the happy eternity! Who is Vicar or Lecturer for that detestable place concerns us not. But Asbury, surgeon and a good fellow, has offered to get you a Mover and Seconder, and you may use my name freely to him. Except him and Dr. Creswell, I have no respectable acquaintance in the dreary village. At least my friends are all in the public line, and it might not suit to have it moved at a special vestry by John Gage at the Crown and Horseshoe, licensed victualler, and seconded by Joseph Horner of the Green Dragon, ditto, that the Rev. J.G. is a fit person to be Lecturer, &c.

My dear James, I wish you all success, but am too full of my own emancipation almost to congratulate anyone else. With both our loves to your father and mother and glorious S.T.C.



[The Rev. James Gillman was the eldest son of Coleridge's physician and friend. He was born in 1808 and ordained in 1831. He thought in 1833 of standing as candidate for the vicarship of Enfield, but did not obtain it. After acting as Under Master of Highgate Grammar School he became in 1836 Rector of Barfreystone, in Kent. In 1847 he became Vicar of Holy Trinity, Lambeth. He died in 1877.

Mary Lamb having become ill again had been moved to Edmonton, to a private home for mental patients. Lamb followed her soon after, and settled in the same house. It still stands (1912) almost exactly as in the Lambs' day.]



[No date. May, 1833.]

D'r F. Can you oblige me by sending 4 Box orders undated for the Olympic Theatre? I suppose Knowles can get 'em. It is for the Waldens, with whom I live. The sooner, the better, that they may not miss the "Wife"—I meet you at the Talfourds' Saturday week, and if they can't, perhaps you can, give me a bed.

Yours ratherish unwell


Mr. Walden's, Church Street, Edmonton.

Or write immediately to say if you can't get em.

[Knowles' play "The Wife," produced at Covent Garden, was moved to the Olympic on May 9.]



[P.M. May 12, 1833.]

Dear Boy, I send you the original Elias, complete. When I am a little composed, I shall hope to see you and Proctor here; may be, may see you first in London.


(Video) King Charles III: Princess Diana's Ghost

[In the Dyce and Forster collection, at South Kensington, are preserved some of these MSS.

Here should come a letter to Miss Rickman, dated May 23, 1833. "Perhaps, as Miss Kelly is just now in notoriety, it may amuse you to know that 'Barbara S.' is all of it true of her, being all communicated to me from her own mouth. The 'wedding' you of course found out to be Sally Burney's."]



End of May nearly, [1833].

Dear Wordsworth, Your letter, save in what respects your dear Sister's health, chear'd me in my new solitude. Mary is ill again. Her illnesses encroach yearly. The last was three months, followed by two of depression most dreadful. I look back upon her earlier attacks with longing. Nice little durations of six weeks or so, followed by complete restoration—shocking as they were to me then. In short, half her life she is dead to me, and the other half is made anxious with fears and lookings forward to the next shock. With such prospects, it seem'd to me necessary that she should no longer live with me, and be fluttered with continual removals, so I am come to live with her, at a Mr. Walden's and his wife, who take in patients, and have arranged to lodge and board us only. They have had the care of her before. I see little of her; alas! I too often hear her. Sunt lachrymae rerum—and you and I must bear it—

To lay a little more load on it, a circumstance has happen'd, cujus pars magna fui, and which at another crisis I should have more rejoiced in. I am about to lose my old and only walk-companion, whose mirthful spirits were the "youth of our house," Emma Isola. I have her here now for a little while, but she is too nervous properly to be under such a roof, so she will make short visits, be no more an inmate. With my perfect approval, and more than concurrence, she is to be wedded to Moxon at the end of Aug'st. So "perish the roses and the flowers"—how is it?

Now to the brighter side, I am emancipated from most hated and detestable people, the Westwoods. I am with attentive people, and younger—I am 3 or 4 miles nearer the Great City, Coaches half-price less, and going always, of which I will avail myself. I have few friends left there, one or two tho' most beloved. But London Streets and faces cheer me inexpressibly, tho' of the latter not one known one were remaining.

Thank you for your cordial reception of Elia. Inter nos the Ariadne is not a darling with me, several incongruous things are in it, but in the composition it served me as illustrative

I want you in the popular fallacies to like the "Home that is no home" and "rising with the lark."

I am feeble, but chearful in this my genial hot weather,—walk'd 16 miles yesterd'y. I can't read much in Summer time. With very kindest love to all and prayers for dear Dorothy,

I remain

most attachedly yours


at mr. walden's, church street, edmonton, middlesex.

Moxon has introduced Emma to Rogers, and he smiles upon the project. I have given E. my MILTON—will you pardon me?—in part of a portion. It hangs famously in his Murray-like shop.

[On the wrapper is written:—]

D'r M[oxon], inclose this in a better-looking paper, and get it frank'd, and good by'e till Sund'y. Come early—


["The Ariadne." See the essay on "Barrenness of the Imaginative Faculty," where Titian's "Bacchus and Ariadne" in the National Gallery is highly praised (see Vol. II.). Wordsworth's favourite essays in this volume were "The Wedding" and "Old China."

"My Milton." Against the reference to the portrait of Milton, in the postscript, some one, possibly Wordsworth, has pencilled a note, now only partially legible. It runs thus: "It had been proposed by L. that W.W. should be the Possessor of [? this picture] his friend and that afterwards it was to be bequeathed to Christ's Coll. Cambridge."

Lamb had given Wordsworth in 1820 a copy of Paradise Regained, 1671, with this inscription: "C. Lamb to the best Knower of Milton, and therefore the worthiest occupant of this pleasant Edition. June 2'd 1820."]



[Dated at end:] Mr. Walden's, Church Street, Edmonton, May 31, 1833.

Dear Mrs. Hazlitt,—I will assuredly come, and find you out, when I am better. I am driven from house and home by Mary's illness. I took a sudden resolution to take my sister to Edmonton, where she was under medical treatment last time, and have arranged to board and lodge with the people. Thank God, I have repudiated Enfield. I have got out of hell, despair of heaven, and must sit down contented in a half-way purgatory. Thus ends this strange eventful history—

But I am nearer town, and will get up to you somehow before long—

I repent not of my resolution.

'Tis late, and my hand unsteady, so good b'ye till we meet.

Your old




June 5, 1833.

Dear Mary Betham,—I remember You all, and tears come out when I think on the years that have separated us. That dear Anne should so long have remembered us affects me. My dear Mary, my poor sister is not, nor will be for two months perhaps capable of appreciating the kind old long memory of dear Anne.

But not a penny will I take, and I can answer for my Mary when she recovers, if the sum left can contribute in any way to the comfort of Matilda.

We will halve it, or we will take a bit of it, as a token, rather than wrong her. So pray consider it as an amicable arrangement. I write in great haste, or you won't get it before you go.

We do not want the money; but if dear Matilda does not much want it, why, we will take our thirds. God bless you.


[Miss Betham's sister, Anne, who had just died, had left thirty pounds to Mary Lamb. Mr. Ernest Betham allows me to take this note from A House of Letters.]



[June 5, 1833.]

Dear Miss Betham,—I sit down, very poorly, to write to you, being come to Mr. Walden's, Church Street, Edmonton, to be altogether with poor Mary, who is very ill, as usual, only that her illnesses are now as many months as they used to be weeks in duration—the reason your letter only just found me. I am saddened with the havoc death has made in your family. I do not know how to appreciate the kind regard of dear Anne; Mary will understand it two months hence, I hope; but neither she nor I would rob you, if the legacy will be of use to, or comfort to you. My hand shakes so I can hardly write. On Saturday week I must come to town, and will call on you in the morning before one o'clock. Till when I take kindest leave.

Your old Friend,


[Here should come a note from Lamb to Mrs. Randal Norris, postmarked July 10, 1833, which encloses a note from Joseph Jekyll, the Old Bencher, thanking Lamb for a presentation copy of the Last Essays of Elia ("I hope not the last Essays of Elia") and asking him to accompany Mrs. Norris and her daughters on a visit to him. Jekyll adds that "poor George Dyer, blind, but as usual chearful and content, often gives ... good accounts of you."

Here should come notes to Allsop, declining an invitation to Highgate, and to a Mr. Tuff, warning him to be quick to use some theatre tickets which Lamb had sent him.]



[P.M. July 14, 1833.]

Dear M. the Hogarths are delicate. Perhaps it will amuse Emma to tell her, that, a day or two since, Miss Norris (Betsy) call'd to me on the road from London from a gig conveying her to Widford, and engaged me to come down this afternoon. I think I shall stay only one night; she would have been glad of E's accompaniment, but I would not disturb her, and Mrs. N. is coming to town on Monday, so it would not have suited. Also, C.V. Le Grice gave me a dinner at Johnny Gilpin's yesterday, where we talk'd of what old friends were taken or left in the 30 years since we had met.

I shall hope to see her on Tuesd'y.

To Bless you both



[Le Grice we have met. "Johnny Gilpin's" was The Bell at Edmonton.

Here should come another note from Lamb to Mrs. Randal Norris, in which Lamb says that he reached home safely and thanks her for three agreeable days. Also he sends some little books, which were, I take it, copies of Moxon's private reissue of Poetry for Children.

Mr. W.C. Hazlitt records that a letter from Lamb to Miss Norris was in existence in which the writer gave "minute and humorous instructions for his own funeral, even specifying the number of nails which he desired to be inserted in his coffin."]



[P.M. July 24, 1833.]

For god's sake, give Emma no more watches. One has turn'd her head. She is arrogant, and insulting. She said something very unpleasant to our old Clock in the passage, as if he did not keep time, and yet he had made her no appointment. She takes it out every instant to look at the moment-hand. She lugs us out into the fields, because there the bird-boys ask you "Pray, Sir, can you tell us what's a Clock," and she answers them punctually. She loses all her time looking "what the time is." I overheard her whispering, "Just so many hours, minutes &c. to Tuesday—I think St. George's goes too slow"—This little present of Time, why, 'tis Eternity to her—

What can make her so fond of a gingerbread watch?

She has spoil'd some of the movements. Between ourselves, she has kissed away "half past 12," which I suppose to be the canonical hour in Hanover Sq.

Well, if "love me, love my watch," answers, she will keep time to you—

It goes right by the Horse Guards—

[On the next page:—]

Emma hast kist this yellow wafer—a hint.


Never mind opposite nonsense. She does not love you for the watch, but the watch for you.

I will be at the wedding, and keep the 30 July as long as my poor months last me, as a festival gloriously.

Your _ever


We have not heard from Cambridge. I will write the moment we do.

Edmonton, 24th July, 3.20 post mer. minutes 4 instants by Emma's watch.

[There used to be preserved at Rowfant (it is now in America) a letter from Lamb to Moxon, postmarked July 28, 1833, mentioning Lamb's anxiety about Martin Burney. It is unnecessary to print this.]



[No date. ? July 31, 1833.]

Dear Mr. and Mrs. Moxon—

Time very short. I wrote to Miss Fryer, and had the sweetest letter about you, Emma, that ever friendship dictated. "I am full of good wishes, I am crying with good wishes," she says; but you shall see it.—

Dear Moxon, I take your writing most kindly and shall most kindly your writing from Paris—

I want to crowd another letter to Miss Fry[er] into the little time after dinner before Post time.

So with 20000 congratulations,



I am calm, sober, happy. Turn over for the reason.

I got home from Dover St., by Evens, half as sober as a judge. I am turning over a new leaf, as I hope you will now.

[On the next leaf Mary Lamb wrote:—]


Accept my sincere congratulations, and imagine more good wishes than my weak nerves will let me put into good set words. The dreary blank of unanswered questions which I ventured to ask in vain was cleared up on the wedding-day by Mrs. W. taking a glass of wine, and, with a total change of countenance, begged leave to drink Mr. and Mrs. Moxon's health. It restored me, from that moment: as if by an electrical stroke: to the entire possession of my senses—I never felt so calm and quiet after a similar illness as I do now. I feel as if all tears were wiped from my eyes, and all care from my heart.


[At the foot of this letter Charles Lamb added:—]



Your letter interrupted a seventh game at Picquet which we were having, after walking to Wright's and purchasing shoes. We pass our time in cards, walks, and reading. We attack Tasso soon.


Never was such a calm, or such a recovery. 'Tis her own words, undictated.

[The marriage of Edward Moxon and Emma Isola was celebrated on July 30. They afterwards went to Paris.

"Mrs. W."—Mrs. Walden, I imagine.

Here should come an amusing but brief account of the wedding sent by Lamb to Louisa Badams on August 20 (printed by Canon Ainger). "I am not fit for weddings or burials. Both incite a chuckle:" a sentiment which Lamb more than once expresses.

Here should come a note thanking Matilda Betham for some bridal verses written for the wedding of Edward Moxon and Emma Isola. "In haste and headake."]



Sept. 9th, 1833.

Dear Sir,—Your packet I have only just received, owing, I suppose, to the absence of Moxon, who is flaunting it about a la Parisienne with his new bride, our Emma, much to his satisfaction and not a little to our dulness. We shall be quite well by the time you return from Worcestershire and most most (observe the repetition) glad to see you here or anywhere.

I will take my time with Darley's act. I wish poets would write a little plainer; he begins some of his words with a letter which is unknown to the English typography.

Yours, most truly,


P.S.—Pray let me know when you return. We are at Mr. Walden's, Church-street, Edmonton; no longer at Enfield. You will be amused to hear that my sister and I have, with the aid of Emma, scrambled through the "Inferno" by the blessed furtherance of your polar-star translation. I think we scarce left anything unmadeout. But our partner has left us, and we have not yet resumed. Mary's chief pride in it was that she should some day brag of it to you. Your Dante and Sandys' Ovid are the only helpmates of translations. Neither of you shirk a word.

Fairfax's Tasso is no translation at all. It's better in some places; but it merely observes the number of stanzas; as for images, similes, &c., he finds 'em himself, and never "troubles Peter for the matter."

In haste, dear Gary, yours ever,


Has Moxon sent you "Elia," second volume? if not, he shall. Taylor and we are at law about it.

["Darley's act." Not now identifiable, I think.

"Taylor and we." The case had apparently not been settled by Procter. I have not found any report of a law-suit.]



[P.M. Sept. 26, 1833.]


We shall be most happy to see Emma, dear to every body. Mary's spirits are much better, and she longs to see again our twelve years' friend. You shall afternoon sip with me a bottle of superexcellent Port, after deducting a dinner-glass for them. We rejoyce to have E. come, the first Visit, without Miss ——, who, I trust, will yet behave well; but she might perplex Mary with questions. Pindar sadly wants Preface and notes. Pray, E., get to Snow Hill before 12, for we dine before 2. We will make it 2. By mistake I gave you Miss Betham's letter, with the exquisite verses, which pray return to me, or if it be an improved copy, give me the other, and Albumize mine, keeping the signature. It is too pretty a family portrait, for you not to cherish.

Your loving friends



[Pindar was Cary's edition, which Moxon had just published. Miss Betham's verses I am sorry not to be able to give; but the following poem was addressed to Moxon by Lamb and printed in The Athenaeum for December 7, 1833:—


(Video) DMX - Lord Give Me A Sign (Official Video)

What makes a happy wedlock? What has fate Not given to thee in thy well-chosen mate? Good sense—good humour;—these are trivial things, Dear M——-, that each trite encomiast sings. But she hath these, and more. A mind exempt From every low-bred passion, where contempt, Nor envy, nor detraction, ever found A harbour yet; an understanding sound; Just views of right and wrong; perception full Of the deformed, and of the beautiful, In life and manners; wit above her sex, Which, as a gem, her sprightly converse decks; Exuberant fancies, prodigal of mirth, To gladden woodland walk, or winter hearth; A noble nature, conqueror in the strife Of conflict with a hard discouraging life, Strengthening the veins of virtue, past the power Of those whose days have been one silken hour, Spoil'd fortune's pamper'd offspring; a keen sense Alike of benefit, and of offence, With reconcilement quick, that instant springs From the charged heart with nimble angel wings; While grateful feelings, like a signet sign'd By a strong hand, seem burnt into her mind. If these, dear friend, a dowry can confer Richer than land, thou hast them all in her; And beauty, which some hold the chiefest boon, Is in thy bargain for a make-weight thrown.]



[P.M. Oct. 17, 1833.]

Dear M.—Get me Shirley (there's a dear fellow) and send it soon. We sadly want books, and this will be readable again and again, and pay itself. Tell Emma I grieve for the poor self-punishing self-baffling Lady; with all our hearts we grieve for the pain and vexation she has encounterd; but we do not swerve a pin's-thought from the propriety of your measures. God comfort her, and there's an end of a painful necessity. But I am glad she goes to see her. Let her keep up all the kindness she can between them. In a week or two I hope Mary will be stout enough to come among ye, but she is not now, and I have scruples of coming alone, as she has no pleasant friend to sit with her in my absence. We are lonely. I fear the visits must be mostly from you. By the way omnibuses are 1's/3'd and coach insides sunk to l/6—a hint. Without disturbance to yourselves, or upsetting the economy of the dear new mistress of a family, come and see us as often as ever you can. We are so out of the world, that a letter from either of you now and then, detailing any thing, Book or Town news, is as good as a newspaper. I have desperate colds, cramps, megrims &c., but do not despond. My fingers are numb'd, as you see by my writing. Tell E. I am very good also. But we are poor devils, that's the truth of it. I won't apply to Dilke— just now at least—I sincerely hope the pastoral air of Dover St. will recruit poor Harriet. With best loves to all.

Yours ever


Ryle and Lowe dined here on Sunday; the manners of the latter, so gentlemanly! have attracted the special admiration of our Landlady. She guest R. to be nearly of my age. He always had an old head on young shoulders. I fear I shall always have the opposite. Tell me any thing of Foster [Forster] or any body. Write any thing you think will amuse me. I do dearly hope in a week or two to surprise you with our appearance in Dover St....

[Shirley would be Dyce's edition of James Shirley, the dramatist, in six volumes, 1833.

Harriet was Harriet Isola.

"Ryle and Lowe." Ryle we have met, but I do not identify Lowe.

I have omitted some lines about family matters at the end of the letter.]



Nov. 29th, 1833.

Mary is of opinion with me, that two of these Sonnets are of a higher grade than any poetry you have done yet. The one to Emma is so pretty! I have only allowed myself to transpose a word in the third line. Sacred shall it be for any intermeddling of mine. But we jointly beg that you will make four lines in the room of the four last. Read "Darby and Joan," in Mrs. Moxon's first album. There you'll see how beautiful in age the looking back to youthful years in an old couple is. But it is a violence to the feelings to anticipate that time in youth. I hope you and Emma will have many a quarrel and many a make-up (and she is beautiful in reconciliation!) before the dark days shall come, in which ye shall say "there is small comfort in them." You have begun a sort of character of Emma in them very sweetly; carry it on, if you can, through the last lines.

I love the sonnet to my heart, and you shall finish it, and I'll be damn'd if I furnish a line towards it. So much for that. The next best is


"Ye gallant winds, if e'er your LUSTY CHEEKS Blew longing lover to his mistress' side, O, puff your loudest, spread the canvas wide,"

is spirited. The last line I altered, and have re-altered it as it stood. It is closer. These two are your best. But take a good deal of time in finishing the first. How proud should Emma be of her poets!

Perhaps "O Ocean" (though I like it) is too much of the open vowels, which Pope objects to. "Great Ocean!" is obvious. "To save sad thoughts" I think is better (though not good) than for the mind to save herself. But 'tis a noble Sonnet. "St. Cloud" I have no fault to find with.

If I return the Sonnets, think it no disrespect; for I look for a printed copy. You have done better than ever. And now for a reason I did not notice 'em earlier. On Wednesday they came, and on Wednesday I was a-gadding. Mary gave me a holiday, and I set off to Snow Hill. From Snow Hill I deliberately was marching down, with noble Holborn before me, framing in mental cogitation a map of the dear London in prospect, thinking to traverse Wardour-street, &c., when diabolically I was interrupted by

Heigh-ho! Little Barrow!—

Emma knows him,—and prevailed on to spend the day at his sister's, where was an album, and (O march of intellect!) plenty of literary conversation, and more acquaintance with the state of modern poetry than I could keep up with. I was positively distanced. Knowles' play, which, epilogued by me, lay on the PIANO, alone made me hold up my head. When I came home I read your letter, and glimpsed at your beautiful sonnet,

"Fair art them as the morning, my young bride,"

and dwelt upon it in a confused brain, but determined not to open them till next day, being in a state not to be told of at Chatteris. Tell it not in Gath, Emma, lest the daughters triumph! I am at the end of my tether. I wish you could come on Tuesday with your fair bride. Why can't you! Do. We are thankful to your sister for being of the party. Come, and bring a sonnet on Mary's birthday. Love to the whole Moxonry, and tell E. I every day love her more, and miss her less. Tell her so from her loving uncle, as she has let me call myself. I bought a fine embossed card yesterday, and wrote for the Pawnbrokeress's album. She is a Miss Brown, engaged to a Mr. White. One of the lines was (I forget the rest—but she had them at twenty-four hours' notice; she is going out to India with her husband):—

"May your fame And fortune, Frances, WHITEN with your name!"

Not bad as a pun. I wil expect you before two on Tuesday. I am well and happy, tell E.

[Moxon subsequently published his Sonnets, in two parts, one of which was dedicated to his brother and one to Wordsworth. There are several to his wife, so that it is difficult to identify that in which the last lines were to be altered. Mrs. Moxon's first album was an extract book in which Lamb had copied a number of old ballads and other poems.

I quote one of Moxon's many sonnets to Emma Moxon:—

Fair art thou as the morning, my young Bride! Her freshness is about thee; like a river To the sea gliding with sweet murmur ever Thou sportest; and, wherever thou dost glide, Humanity a livelier aspect wears. Fair art thou as the morning of that land Where Tuscan breezes in his youth have fanned Thy grandsire oft. Thou hast not many tears, Save such as pity from the heart will wring, And then there is a smile in thy distress! Meeker thou art than lily of the spring, Yet is thy nature full of nobleness! And gentle ways, that soothe and raise me so, That henceforth I no worldly sorrow know!

"Heigh-ho! Little Barrow!" I cannot identify this acquaintance.

"Knowles's play"—"The Wife." Prologued by Lamb too.

"At Chatteris." I cannot say who were the teetotal, or abstinent, Philistines.

"Mary's birthday." Mary Lamb would be sixty-nine on December 3, 1833.

Lamb's verses to Miss Brown seem to be no longer preserved. Mr. Hazlitt prints a letter to a Miss Frances Brown, wherein Lamb offers the verses, adding "I hope your sweetheart's name is WHITE. Else it would spoil all. May be 'tis BLACK. Then we must alter it. And may your fortunes BLACKEN with your name."]



[No date. Middle Dec., 1833.]

I hoped R. would like his Sonnet, but I fear'd S. that fine old man, might not quite like the turn of it. This last was penn'd almost literally extempore.


Is S.'s Christian name Thomas? if not, correct it.

["R."—Rogers; "S."—Stothard. See next letter.]



[No date. Probably Saturday, December 21, 1833.]

My dear Sir,—Your book, by the unremitting punctuality of your publisher, has reached me thus early. I have not opened it, nor will till to-morrow, when I promise myself a thorough reading of it. "The Pleasures of Memory" was the first school present I made to Mrs. Moxon, it had those nice wood-cuts; and I believe she keeps it still. Believe me, that all the kindness you have shown to the husband of that excellent person seems done unto myself. I have tried my hand at a sonnet in "The Times." But the turn I gave it, though I hoped it would not displease you, I thought might not be equally agreeable to your artist. I met that dear old man at poor Henry's—with you—and again at Cary's—and it was sublime to see him sit deaf and enjoy all that was going on in mirth with the company. He reposed upon the many graceful, many fantastic images he had created; with them he dined and took wine.

I have ventured at an antagonist copy of verses in "The Athenaeum" to him, in which he is as everything and you as nothing. He is no lawyer who cannot take two sides. But I am jealous of the combination of the sister arts. Let them sparkle apart. What injury (short of the theatres) did not Boydell's "Shakespeare Gallery" do me with Shakespeare?—to have Opie's Shakespeare, Northcote's Shakespeare, light-headed Fuseli's Shakespeare, heavy-headed Romney's Shakespeare, wooden-headed West's Shakespeare (though he did the best in "Lear"), deaf-headed Reynolds's Shakespeare, instead of my, and everybody's Shakespeare. To be tied down to an authentic face of Juliet! To have Imogen's portrait! To confine the illimitable! I like you and Stothard (you best), but "out upon this half-faced fellowship." Sir, when I have read the book I may trouble you, through Moxon, with some faint criticisms. It is not the flatteringest compliment, in a letter to an author, to say you have not read his book yet. But the devil of a reader he must be who prances through it in five minutes, and no longer have I received the parcel. It was a little tantalizing to me to receive a letter from Landor, Gebir Landor, from Florence, to say he was just sitting down to read my "Elia," just received, but the letter was to go out before the reading. There are calamities in authorship which only authors know. I am going to call on Moxon on Monday, if the throng of carriages in Dover Street on the morn of publication do not barricade me out.

With many thanks, and most respectful remembrances to your sister,



Have you seen Coleridge's happy exemplification in English of the Ovidian elegiac metre?—

In the Hexameter rises the fountain's silvery current, In the Pentameter aye falling in melody down.

My sister is papering up the book—careful soul!

[Moxon published a superb edition of Rogers' Poems illustrated by Turner and Stothard. Lamb had received an advance copy. The sonnet to Rogers in The Times was printed on December 13, 1833. It ran thus:—


When thy gay book hath paid its proud devoirs, Poetic friend, and fed with luxury The eye of pampered aristocracy In glittering drawing-rooms and gilt boudoirs, O'erlaid with comments of pictorial art, However rich and rare, yet nothing leaving Of healthful action to the soul-conceiving Of the true reader—yet a nobler part Awaits thy work, already classic styled. Cheap-clad, accessible, in homeliest show The modest beauty through the land shall go From year to year, and render life more mild; Refinement to the poor man's hearth shall give, And in the moral heart of England live.


Thomas Stothard, then in his seventy-ninth year, Lamb had met at Henry Rogers', who had died at Christmas, 1832. The following was the copy of verses printed in The Athenaeum, December 21, 1833 ("that most romantic tale" was Peter Wilkins):—


On his Illustrations of the Poems of Mr. Rogers

Consummate Artist, whose undying name With classic Rogers shall go down to fame, Be this thy crowning work! In my young days How often have I with a child's fond gaze Pored on the pictured wonders thou hadst done: Clarissa mournful, and prim Grandison! All Fielding's, Smollett's heroes, rose to view; I saw, and I believed the phantoms true. But, above all, that most romantic tale Did o'er my raw credulity prevail, Where Glums and Gawries wear mysterious things, That serve at once for jackets and for wings. Age, that enfeebles other men's designs, But heightens thine, and thy free draught refines. In several ways distinct you make us feel— Graceful as Raphael, as Watteau genteel. Your lights and shades, as Titianesque, we praise; And warmly wish you Titian's length of days.

"Short of the theatres." The injury done by the theatres is of course the subject of Lamb's Reflector essay on Shakespeare's Tragedies (see Vol. I.).

"Boydell's 'Shakespeare Gallery'"—the series of 170 illustrations to Shakespeare by leading artists of the day projected by Alderman Boydell in 1786.

"Coleridge's... exemplification." Lamb quoted incorrectly. The lines had just appeared in Friendship's Offering for 1834:—

In the hexameter rises the fountain's silvery column; In the pentameter aye falling in melody back.

Coleridge took the lines from Schiller.

At Dr. Williams' Library is a note from Thos. Robinson to Crabb Robinson, dated December 22, 1833, concerning Lamb's Christmas turkey, which went first to Crabb Robinson at the Temple and was then sent on to Lamb, presumably with the note in the hamper. Lamb adds at the foot of the note:—

"The parcel coming thro' you, I open'd this note, but find no treason in it.

With thanks


I give here three other notes to Dilke, belonging probably to the early days of 1834. The first refers to the proof of one of Lamb's contributions to The Athenaeum.]



[No date.]

May I now claim of you the benefit of the loan of some books. Do not fear sending too many. But do not if it be irksome to yourself,—such as shall make you say, 'damn it, here's Lamb's box come again.' Dog's leaves ensured! Any light stuff: no natural, history or useful learning, such as Pyramids, Catacombs, Giraffes, Adventures in Southern Africa, &c. &c.

With our joint compliments, yours,


Church Street, Edmonton.

Novels for the last two years, or further back-nonsense of any period.



[No date. Spring, 1834.]

Dear Sir, I return 44 volumes by Tate. If they are not all your own, and some of mine have slipt in, I do not think you will lose much. Shall I go on with the Table talk? I will, if you like it, when the Culinary article has appear'd.

Robins, the Carrier, from the Swan, Snow Hill, will bring any more contributions, thankfully to be receiv'd—I pay backwards and forwards.


["Table Talk by the late Elia" appeared in The Athenaeum on January 4, May 31, June 7 and July 19, 1834. The Culinary article is the paragraph that now closes the "Table Talk" (see Vol. I.).]



[No date.]

I have read the enclosed five and forty times over. I have submitted it to my Edmonton friends; at last (O Argus' penetration), I have discovered a dash that might be dispensed with. Pray don't trouble yourself with such useless courtesies. I can well trust your editor, when I don't use queer phrases which prove themselves wrong by creating a distrust in the sober compositor.



January 24, 1834,

Church Street, Edmonton.

Dear Mary Betham—I received the Bill, and when it is payable, some ten or twelve days hence, will punctually do with the overplus as you direct: I thought you would like to know it came to hand, so I have not waited for the uncertainty of when your nephew sets out. I suppose my receipt will serve, for poor Mary is not in a capacity to sign it. After being well from the end of July to the end of December, she was taken ill almost on the first day of the New Year, and is as bad as poor creature can be. I expect her fever to last 14 or 15 weeks—if she gets well at all, which every successive illness puts me in fear of. She has less and less strength to throw it off, and they leave a dreadful depression after them. She was quite comfortable a few weeks since, when Matilda came down here to see us.

You shall excuse a short letter, for my hand is unsteady. Indeed, the situation I am in with her shakes me sadly. She was quite able to appreciate the kind legacy while she was well. Imagine her kindest love to you, which is but buried awhile, and believe all the good wishes for your restoration to health from


[This letter refers to the legacy mentioned above. It had now been paid.]



[P.M. Jan. 28, 1834.]

I met with a man at my half way house, who told me many anecdotes of Kean's younger life. He knew him thoroughly. His name is Wyatt, living near the Bell, Edmonton. Also he referred me to West, a publican, opposite St. Georges Church, Southwark, who knew him more intimately. Is it worth Forster's while to enquire after them?


[Edmund Kean had died in the previous May. Forster, who was at this time theatrical critic of The Examiner, was probably at work upon a biographical article.

Here should come a note from Lamb to Matilda Betham, dated January 29, 1834. "My poor Mary is terribly ill again."

Here also, dated February 7, should come a letter to William Hone, in which Lamb, after mentioning his sister's illness, urges upon Hone the advisability of applying to the Literary Fund for some relief, and offers to support him in his appeal.]



Feb. 14, 1834.

Dear Miss Fryer,—Your letter found me just returned from keeping my birthday (pretty innocent!) at Dover-street. I see them pretty often. I have since had letters of business to write, or should have replied earlier. In one word, be less uneasy about me; I bear my privations very well; I am not in the depths of desolation, as heretofore. Your admonitions are not lost upon me. Your kindness has sunk into my heart. Have faith in me! It is no new thing for me to be left to my sister. When she is not violent, her rambling chat is better to me than the sense and sanity of this world. Her heart is obscured, not buried; it breaks out occasionally; and one can discern a strong mind struggling with the billows that have gone over it. I could be nowhere happier than under the same roof with her. Her memory is unnaturally strong; and from ages past, if we may so call the earliest records of our poor life, she fetches thousands of names and things that never would have dawned upon me again, and thousands from the ten years she lived before me. What took place from early girlhood to her coming of age principally lives again (every important thing and every trifle) in her brain with the vividness of real presence. For twelve hours incessantly she will pour out without intermission all her past life, forgetting nothing, pouring out name after name to the Waldens as a dream; sense and nonsense; truths and errors huddled together; a medley between inspiration and possession. What things we are! I know you will bear with me, talking of these things. It seems to ease me; for I have nobody to tell these things to now. Emma, I see, has got a harp! and is learning to play. She has framed her three Walton pictures, and pretty they look. That is a book you should read; such sweet religion in it—next to Woolman's! though the subject be baits and hooks, and worms, and fishes. She has my copy at present to do two more from.

Very, very tired, I began this epistle, having been epistolising all the morning, and very kindly would I end it, could I find adequate expressions to your kindness. We did set our minds on seeing you in spring. One of us will indubitably. But I am not skilled in almanac learning, to know when spring precisely begins and ends. Pardon my blots; I am glad you like your book. I wish it had been half as worthy of your acceptance as "John Woolman." But 'tis a good-natured book.

[Miss Fryer was a school-fellow of Mrs. Moxon's.

I append another letter, undated, to the same lady. It belongs obviously to an earlier period, but the exact position is unimportant:—]



[No date.]

My dear Miss Fryer, By desire of Emma I have attempted new words to the old nonsense of Tartar Drum; but with the nonsense the sound and spirit of the tune are unaccountably gone, and we have agreed to discard the new version altogether. As you may be more fastidious in singing mere silliness, and a string of well-sounding images without sense or coherence—Drums of Tartars, who use none, and Tulip trees ten foot high, not to mention Spirits in Sunbeams &c,—than we are, so you are at liberty to sacrifice an enspiriting movement to a little sense, tho' I like LITTLE-SENSE less than his vagarying younger sister NO-SENSE—so I send them——

The 4th line of 1st stanza is from an old Ballad.

Emma is looking weller and handsomer (as you say) than ever. Really, if she goes on thus improving, by the time she is nine and thirty she will be a tolerable comely person. But I may not live to see it.—I take Beauty to be catching— a Cholera sort of thing—Now, whether the constant presence of a handsome object—for there's only two of us—may not have the effect———but the subject is delicate, and as my old great Ant* used to say—"Andsome is as andsome duzz"—that was my great Ant's way of spelling——

Most and best kind things say to yourself and dear Mother for all your kindnesses to our Em., tho' in truth I am a little tired with her everlasting repetition of 'em. Yours very Truly,


* Emma's way of spelling Miss Umfris, as I spell her Aunt.


Tune: "The Tartar Drum"


Guard thy feelings, pretty Vestal, From the smooth Intruder free; Cage thine heart in bars of chrystal, Lock it with a golden key; Thro' the bars demurely stealing— Noiseless footstep, accent dumb, His approach to none revealing— Watch, or watch not, LOVE WILL COME. His approach to none revealing— Watch, or watch not, Love will come—Love, Watch, or watch not, Love will come.

(Video) Count Your Blessings (Ingrid DuMosch & The London Fox Singers) - MVL - roncobb1


Scornful Beauty may deny him— He hath spells to charm disdain; Homely Features may defy him— Both at length must wear the chain. Haughty Youth in Courts of Princes— Hermit poor with age oercome— His soft plea at last convinces; Sooner, later, LOVE WILL COME—

His soft plea at length convinces; Sooner, later, Love will come—Love, Sooner, later, Love will come.



Church S't, Edmonton,

22 feb. [1834].

Dear Wordsworth, I write from a house of mourning. The oldest and best friends I have left, are in trouble. A branch of them (and they of the best stock of God's creatures, I believe) is establishing a school at Carlisle. Her name is Louisa Martin, her address 75 Castle Street, Carlisle; her qualities (and her motives for this exertion) are the most amiable, most upright. For thirty years she has been tried by me, and on her behaviour I would stake my soul. O if you can recommend her, how would I love you—if I could love you better. Pray, pray, recommend her. She is as good a human creature,—next to my Sister, perhaps the most exemplary female I ever knew. Moxon tells me, you would like a Letter from me. You shall have one. This I cannot mingle up with any nonsense which you usually tolerate from, C. LAMB. Need he add loves to Wife, Sister, and all? Poor Mary is ill again, after a short lucid interval of 4 or 5 months. In short, I may call her half dead to me.

Good you are to me. Yours with fervor of friendship; for ever

turn over

If you want references, the Bishop of Carlisle may be one. Louisa's Sister, (as good as she, she cannot be better tho' she tries,) educated the daughters of the late Earl of Carnarvon, and he settled a handsome Annuity on her for life. In short all the family are a sound rock. The present Lord Carnarvon married Howard of Graystock's Sister.

[Wordsworth has written on the wrapper, "Lamb's last letter."

We met the Martins in the early correspondence. It was Louisa whom, many years, before, Lamb used to call "Monkey."

Here should come Lamb's last letter to Thomas Manning, dated May 10, 1834. Mary has, he says, been ill for nigh twenty weeks; "she is, I hope, recovering." "I struggle to town rarely, and then to see London, with little other motive—for what is left there hardly? The streets and shops entertaining ever, else I feel as in a desert, and get me home to my cave." Once a month, he adds, he passes a day with Cary at the Museum. When Mary was getting better in the previous year she would read all the auctioneers' advertisements on the walk. "These are my Play-bills," she said. "I walk 9 or 10 miles a day, always up the road, dear Londonwards." Addressed to Manning at Puckeridge.

Manning lived on, an eccentric recluse, until 1840.

Here perhaps should come the following melancholy letter to Talfourd, which Mr. Dobell permits me to print:—]



[No date. Early 1834?]

D'r T.—[1]Moxon & Knowles are coming to Enfield on Sunday afternoon. My poor shaken head cannot at present let me ask any dinner company; for two drinkings in a day, which must ensue, would incapacity me. I am very poorly. They can only get an Edmont'n stage, from which village 'tis but a 2 miles walk, & I have only inn beds to offer. Pray, join 'em if you can. Our first morning stage to London is 1/2 past 8. If that won't suit your avocations, arrange with Ryle (or without him)—but how can I separate him morally?—logically and legally, poetically and critically I can,—from you? No disparagement (for a better Christian exists not)—well arrange cum or absque illo—this is latin— the first Sunday you can, morning.

I am poorly, but I always am on these occasions, a week or two. Then I get sober,—I mean less insober. Yours till death; you are mine after. Don't mind a touch of pathos. Love to Mrs. Talfourd.

The Edmonton stages come almost every hour from Snow Hill.

[Footnote 1: Erratum, for M. & K. read K. & M. Booksellers after Authors.]

[Ryle, as I have already said, was Lamb's executor, with Talfourd. Hence the phrase to Talfourd, "you are mine after."]




[No date. End of June, 1834.]

We heard the Music in the Abbey at Winchmore Hill! and the notes were incomparably soften'd by the distance. Novello's chromatics were distinctly audible. Clara was faulty in B flat. Otherwise she sang like an angel. The trombone, and Beethoven's walzes, were the best. Who played the oboe?

[The letter refers to the performance of Handel's "Creation" at the Musical Festival in Westminster Abbey on June 24, 1834, when Novello and Atwood were the organists, and Clara Novello one of the singers.]



[P.M. June 25, 1834.]

D'r F.—I simply sent for the Miltons because Alsop has some Books of mine, and I thought they might travel with them. But keep 'em as much longer as you like. I never trouble my head with other people's quarrels, I do not always understand my own. I seldom see them in Dover Street. I know as little as the Man in the Moon about your joint transactions, and care as little. If you have lost a little portion of my "good will," it is that you do not come and see me. Arrange with Procter, when you have done with your moving accidents.

Yours, ambulaturus,




[Summer, 1834.]

M'r Lamb's compt's and shall be happy to look over the lines as soon as ever Mr. Russell shall send them. He is at Mr. Walden's, Church, not Bury—St, Edm'd.

Line 10. "Ween," and "wist," and "wot," and "eke" are antiquated frippery, and unmodernize a poem rather than give it an antique air, as some strong old words may do. "I guess," "I know," "I knew," are quite as significant.

31. Why "ee"—barbarous Scoticism!—when "eye" is much better and chimes to "cavalry"? A sprinkling of dis-used words where all the style else is after the approved recent fashion teases and puzzles.

37. [Anon the storm begins to slake, The sullen clouds to melt away, The moon becalmed in a blue lake Looks down with melancholy ray.]

The moon becalmed in a blue lake would be more apt to look up. I see my error—the sky is the lake—and beg you to laugh at it.

59. What is a maiden's "een," south of the Tweed? You may as well call her prettily turned ears her "lugs."

"On the maiden's lugs they fall" (verse 79).

144. "A coy young Miss" will never do. For though you are presumed to be a modern, writing only of days of old, yet you should not write a word purely unintelligible to your heroine. Some understanding should be kept up between you. "Miss" is a nickname not two centuries old; came in at about the Restoration. The "King's Misses" is the oldest use of it I can remember. It is Mistress Anne Page, not Miss Page. Modern names and usages should be kept out of sight in an old subject. W. Scott was sadly faulty in this respect.

208. [Tear of sympathy.] Pity's sacred dew. Sympathy is a young lady's word, rife in modern novels, and is almost always wrongly applied. To sympathize is to feel—with, not simply for another. I write verses and sympathize with you. You have the tooth ache, I have not; I feel for you, I cannot sympathize.

243. What is "sheen"? Has it more significance than "bright"? Richmond in its old name was Shene. Would you call an omnibus to take you to Shene? How the "all's right" man would stare!

363. [The violet nestled in the shade, Which fills with perfume all the glade, Yet bashful as a timid maid Thinks to elude the searching eye Of every stranger passing by, Might well compare with Emily.]

A strangely involved simile. The maiden is likend [sic] to a violet which has been just before likened to a maid. Yet it reads prettily, and I would not have it alter'd.

420. "Een" come again? In line 407 you speak it out "eye," bravely like an Englishman.

468. Sorceresses do not entice by wrinkles, but, being essentially aged, appear in assumed beauty.

[This communication and that which follows (with trifling omissions) were sent to Notes and Queries by the late Mr. J. Fuller Russell, F.S.A., with this explanation: "I was residing at Enfield in the Cambridge Long Vacation, 1834, and—perhaps to the neglect of more improving pursuits—composed a metrical novel, named 'Emily de Wilton,' in three parts. When the first of them was completed, I ventured to introduce myself to Charles Lamb (who was living at Edmonton at the time), and telling him what I had done, and that I had 'scarcely heart to proceed until I had obtained the opinion of a competent judge respecting my verses,' I asked him to 'while away an idle hour in their perusal,' adding, 'I fear you will think me very rude and very intrusive, but I am one of the most nervous souls in Christendom.' Moved, possibly, by this diffident (not to say unusual) confession, Elia speedily gave his consent."

The poem was never printed. Lamb's pains in this matter serve to show how kindly disposed he was in these later years to all young men; and how exact a sense of words he had.

In the British Museum is preserved a sheet of similar comments made by Lamb upon a manuscript of P.G. Patmore's, from which I have quoted a few passages above. In Charles Lamb and the Lloyds will also be found a number of interesting criticisms on a translation of Homer.]



[Summer, 1834.]

Sir,—I hope you will finish "Emily." The story I cannot at this stage anticipate. Some looseness of diction I have taken liberty to advert to. It wants a little more severity of style. There are too many prettinesses, but parts of the Poem are better than pretty, and I thank you for the perusal.

Your humble Servt.


Perhaps you will favour me with a call while you stay.

Line 42. "The old abbaye" (if abbey was so spelt) I do not object to, because it does not seem your own language, but humoursomely adapted to the "how folks called it in those times."

82. "Flares"! Think of the vulgarism "flare up;" let it be "burns."

112. [In her pale countenance is blent The majesty of high intent With meekness by devotion lent, And when she bends in prayer Before the Virgin's awful shrine,— The rapt enthusiast might deem The seraph of his brightest dream, Were meekly kneeling there.]

"Was" decidedly, not "were." The deeming or supposition, is of a reality, not a contingency. The enthusiast does not deem that a thing may be, but that it is.

118. [When first young Vernon's flight she knew, The lady deemed the tale untrue.]

"Deemed"! This word is just repeated above; say "thought" or "held." "Deem" is half-cousin to "ween" and "wot."

143. [By pure intent and soul sincere Sustained and nerved, I will not fear Reproach, shame, scorn, the taunting jeer, And worse than all, a father's sneer.]

A father's "sneer"? Would a high-born man in those days sneer at a daughter's disgrace—would he only sneer?

Reproach, and biting shame, and—worse Than all—the estranged father's curse.

I only throw this hint out in a hurry.

177. "Stern and sear"? I see a meaning in it, but no word is good that startles one at first, and then you have to make it out: "drear," perhaps. Then why "to minstrel's glance"? "To fancy's eye," you would say, not "to fiddler's eye."

422. A knight thinks, he don't "trow."

424. "Mayhap" is vulgarish. Perchance.

464. "Sensation" is a philosophic prose word. Feeling.

27. [The hill, where ne'er rang woodman's stroke, Was clothed with elm and spreading oak, Through whose black boughs the moon's mild ray As hardly strove to win a way, As pity to a miser's heart.]

Natural illustrations come more naturally when by them we expound mental operations than when we deduce from natural objects similes of the mind's workings. The miser's struggle thus compared is a beautiful image. But the storm and clouds do not inversely so readily suggest the miser.

160. [Havock and Wrath, his maniac bride, Wheel o'er the conflict, &c.]

These personified gentry I think are not in taste. Besides, Fear has been pallid any time these 2,000 years. It is mixing the style of Aeschylus and the Last Minstrel.

175. Bracy is a good rough vocative. No better suggests itself, unless Grim, Baron Grimm, or Grimoald, which is Saxon, or Grimbald! Tracy would obviate your objection [that the name Bracy occurs in Ivanhoe] but Bracy is stronger.

231. [The frown of night Conceals him, and bewrays their sight.]

Betrays. The other has an unlucky association.

243. [The glinting moon's half-shrouded ray.]

Why "glinting," Scotch, when "glancing" is English?

421. [Then solemnly the monk did say, (The Abbot of Saint Mary's gray,) The leman of a wanton youth Perhaps may gain her father's ruth, But never on his injured breast May lie, caressing and caressed. Bethink you of the vow you made When your light daughter, all distraught, From yonder slaughter-plain was brought, That if in some secluded cell She might till death securely dwell, The house of God should share her wealth.]

Holy abbots surely never so undisguisedly blurted out their secular aims.

I think there is so much of this kind of poetry, that it would not be very taking, but it is well worthy of pleasing a private circle. One blemish runs thro', the perpetual accompaniment of natural images. Seasons of the year, times of day, phases of the moon, phenomena of flowers, are quite as much your dramatis personae as the warriors and the ladies. This last part is as good as what precedes.



[No date. End of July, 1834.]

Dear Sir, I am totally incapable of doing what you suggest at present, and think it right to tell you so without delay. It would shock me, who am shocked enough already, to sit down to write about it. I have no letters of poor C. By and bye what scraps I have shall be yours. Pray excuse me. It is not for want of obliging you, I assure you. For your Box we most cordially feel thankful. I shall be your debtor in my poor way. I do assure you I am incapable.

Again, excuse me

Yours sincerely


[Coleridge's death had occurred on July 25, in his sixty-second year; and Dilke had written to Lamb asking for some words on that event, for The Athenaeum. A little while later a request was made by John Forster that Lamb would write something for the album of a Mr. Keymer. It was then that Lamb wrote the few words that stand under the title "On the Death of Coleridge" (see Vol. I.). Forster wrote thus of the effect of Coleridge's death upon Lamb:—

He thought of little else (his sister was but another portion of himself) until his own great spirit joined his friend. He had a habit of venting his melancholy in a sort of mirth. He would, with nothing graver than a pun, "cleanse his bosom of the perilous stuff that weighed" upon it. In a jest, or a few light phrases, he would lay open the last recesses of his heart. So in respect of the death of Coleridge. Some old friends of his saw him two or three weeks ago, and remarked the constant turning and reference of his mind. He interrupted himself and them almost every instant with some play of affected wonder, or astonishment, or humorous melancholy, on the words, "Coleridge is dead." Nothing could divert him from that, for the thought of it never left him.

Wordsworth said that Coleridge's death hastened Lamb's.]



Mr. Walden's, Church Street,

Edmonton, August 5, 1834.

My dear Sir,—The sad week being over, I must write to you to say, that I was glad of being spared from attending; I have no words to express my feeling with you all. I can only say that when you think a short visit from me would be acceptable, when your father and mother shall be able to see me with comfort, I will come to the bereaved house. Express to them my tenderest regards and hopes that they will continue our friends still. We both love and respect them as much as a human being can, and finally thank them with our hearts for what they have been to the poor departed.

God bless you all,


[Talfourd writes: "Shortly after, assured that his presence would be welcome, Lamb went to Highgate. There he asked leave to see the nurse who had attended upon Coleridge; and being struck and affected by the feeling she manifested towards his friend, insisted on her receiving five guineas from him."

Here should come a letter to J.H. Green dated August 26, 1834, thanking him for a copy of Coleridge's will and offering to send all letters, etc., and "fragments of handwriting from leaves of good old books."]



Sept. 12, 1834.

"By Cot's plessing we will not be absence at the grace."

DEAR C.,—We long to see you, and hear account of your peregrinations, of the Tun at Heidelburg, the Clock at Strasburg, the statue at Rotterdam, the dainty Rhenish and poignant Moselle wines, Westphalian hams, and Botargoes of Altona. But perhaps you have seen nor tasted any of these things.

Yours, very glad to claim you back again to your proper centre, books and Bibliothecae,


I have only got your note just now per negligentiam per iniqui Moxoni.

[Charles and Mary Lamb at this time were supposed to dine at Cary's on the third Wednesday in every month. When the plan was suggested by Cary, Lamb was for declining, but Mary Lamb said, "Ah, when we went to Edmonton, I told Charles that something would turn up, and so it did, you see."]



Oct., 1834.

I protest I know not in what words to invest my sense of the shameful violation of hospitality, which I was guilty of on that fatal Wednesday. Let it be blotted from the calendar. Had it been committed at a layman's house, say a merchant's or manufacturer's, a cheesemonger's' or greengrocer's, or, to go higher, a barrister's, a member of Parliament's, a rich banker's, I should have felt alleviation, a drop of self-pity. But to be seen deliberately to go out of the house of a clergyman drunk! a clergyman of the Church of England too! not that alone, but of an expounder of that dark Italian Hierophant, an exposition little short of his who dared unfold the Apocalypse: divine riddles both and (without supernal grace vouchsafed) Arks not to be fingered without present blasting to the touchers. And, then, from what house! Not a common glebe or vicarage (which yet had been shameful), but from a kingly repository of sciences, human and divine, with the primate of England for its guardian, arrayed in public majesty, from which the profane vulgar are bid fly. Could all those volumes have taught me nothing better! With feverish eyes on the succeeding dawn I opened upon the faint light, enough to distinguish, in a strange chamber not immediately to be recognised, garters, hose, waistcoat, neckerchief, arranged in dreadful order and proportion, which I knew was not mine own. 'Tis the common symptom, on awaking, I judge my last night's condition from. A tolerable scattering on the floor I hail as being too probably my own, and if the candlestick be not removed, I assoil myself. But this finical arrangement, this finding everything in the morning in exact diametrical rectitude, torments me. By whom was I divested? Burning blushes! not by the fair hands of nymphs, the Buffam Graces? Remote whispers suggested that I coached it home in triumph—far be that from working pride in me, for I was unconscious of the locomotion; that a young Mentor accompanied a reprobate old Telemachus; that, the Trojan like, he bore his charge upon his shoulders, while the wretched incubus, in glimmering sense, hiccuped drunken snatches of flying on the bats' wings after sunset. An aged servitor was also hinted at, to make disgrace more complete: one, to whom my ignominy may offer further occasions of revolt (to which he was before too fondly inclining) from the true faith; for, at a sight of my helplessness, what more was needed to drive him to the advocacy of independency? Occasion led me through Great Russell Street yesterday. I gazed at the great knocker. My feeble hands in vain essayed to lift it. I dreaded that Argus Portitor, who doubtless lanterned me out on that prodigious night. I called the Elginian marbles. They were cold to my suit. I shall never again, I said, on the wide gates unfolding, say without fear of thrusting back, in a light but a peremptory air, "I am going to Mr. Cary's." I passed by the walls of Balclutha. I had imaged to myself a zodiac of third Wednesdays irradiating by glimpses the Edmonton dulness. I dreamed of Highmore! I am de-vited to come on Wednesdays. Villanous old age that, with second childhood, brings linked hand in hand her inseparable twin, new inexperience, which knows not effects of liquor. Where I was to have sate for a sober, middle-aged-and-a-half gentleman, literary too, the neat-fingered artist can educe no notions but of a dissolute Silenus, lecturing natural philosophy to a jeering Chromius or a Mnasilus. Pudet. From the context gather the lost name of ——.

["The Buffam Graces." Lamb's landladies at Southampton Buildings.

"I passed by the walls of Balclutha." From Ossian. Lamb uses this quotation in his Elia essay on the South-Sea House.

"Highmore." I cannot explain this reference.

Not long before Mrs. Procter's death a letter from Charles Lamb to Mrs. Basil Montagu was sold, in which Lamb apologised for having become intoxicated while visiting her the night before. Some one mentioned the letter in Mrs. Procter's presence. "Ah," she said, "but they haven't seen the second letter, which I have upstairs, written next day, in which he said that my mother might ask him again with safety as he never got drunk twice in the same house." Unhappily, a large number of Lamb's and other letters were burned by Mrs. Procter.]



(Video) seeing wife face for first time #shorts

[Oct. 18, 1834.]

Dear Sir,—The unbounded range of munificence presented to my choice staggers me. What can twenty votes do for one hundred and two widows? I cast my eyes hopeless among the viduage. N.B.—Southey might be ashamed of himself to let his aged mother stand at the top of the list, with his L100 a year and butt of sack. Sometimes I sigh over No. 12, Mrs. Carve-ill, some poor relation of mine, no doubt. No. 15 has my wishes; but then she is a Welsh one. I have Ruth upon No. 21. I'd tug hard for No. 24. No. 25 is an anomaly: there can be no Mrs. Hogg. No. 34 ensnares me. No. 73 should not have met so foolish a person. No. 92 may bob it as she likes; but she catches no cherry of me. So I have even fixed at hap-hazard, as you'll see.


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