LORD  BYRON  and  his  TIMES
Documents Biography Criticism

Samuel Rogers and his Contemporaries
Samuel Rogers to Richard Sharp, [18 August 1812.]

Vol. I Contents
Chapter I. 1803-1805.
Chapter II. 1805-1809.
Chapter III. 1810-1812.
Chapter IV. 1813-1814.
Chapter V. 1814-1815.
Chapter VI. 1815-1816.
Chapter VII. 1816-1818.
Chapter VIII. 1818-19.
Chapter IX. 1820-1821.
Chapter X. 1822-24.
Chapter XI. 1825-1827.
Vol. II Contents
Chapter I. 1828-1830.
Chapter II. 1831-34.
Chapter III. 1834-1837.
Chapter IV. 1838-41.
Chapter V. 1842-44.
Chapter VI. 1845-46.
Chapter VII. 1847-50.
Chapter VIII. 1850
Chapter IX. 1851.
Chapter X. 1852-55.
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‘Keswick, Tuesday night. Rainy. [18 August, 1812.]

‘My dear Friend,—As I am à l’agonie you must not complain of my cries. It has struck me since that something more is absolutely necessary to the beginning, and I here enclose a triplet, the fruit of my visits to the Ormithwaite, which has become my dear delight. Between the village and “the fine house,” as the children call it thereabouts—under the old oaks, in that lofty path at the foot of Skiddaw—tracking your footsteps, I threw together the lines in question, and, if your cool and better judgment approves of them, which I much doubt, pray send them to the printer’s to be prefixed in the octavo edition, and sent down in a revise at night to me at the Earl of Lonsdale’s, Lowther, near Penrith. Perhaps in that case you had better furnish them with a frank; but pray don’t stir unless you give your full approbation.

I found the Marks here on Saturday not quite ready. They had visited Ormithwaite in the morning under escort of Stephen, and we proceeded by Borrowdale to
Buttermere, but returned by Newlands, not having time (in consequence of her ladyship’s scheme of a voyage to Lodore) for Lorton. On Sunday they left me, and here I have remained a wanderer ever since.

‘The weather on the whole has been very favourable, having never prevented my tiring myself any day. I think the people of Keswick the pleasantest-looking people I ever saw; and the children are beautiful.

‘I shall spend a week or ten days at Lowther, where I mean to sleep on Friday. Lord L. writes me word that letters are waiting there for me, and they will regulate my motions northward.

‘When I walk at Ormithwaite, particularly in the field nearest Applethwaite, I think Keswick the finest lake of the three. But each vanquishes me in its turn.

‘Yours ever,
Saml. Rogers.

‘To-morrow I mean to ride for variety and to dine at Lodore. To-day Mrs. Wood regaled me with grouse. She is an excellent lady! but I sleep in Gray’s blankets notwithstanding.

‘Wednesday morning.

‘Upon reading the whole again, it strikes me that the pronouns we and our clash with the lyrical abruptnesses, and give an air of inflation and pomp to them. I therefore incline to give them up for the present, as Xenophon does in a great part of “The Retreat.”

‘If you call at Cadell’s, you will oblige me by asking for a copy of the octavo, on my account, and keeping it till you can get a better.


‘I have been again to Ormithwaite, having kept back the letter in hope of getting from myself a better judgment.

‘Five o’clock.

‘I have but this moment discovered the Rev. Mr. Pitt’s inscription on the window. How I should like to see Miss Susan Hatton as she then was!

‘After all I am not sure that the Introduction will not be best as it was before.

‘I have directed two copies of the quarto to be sent to you, but, on second thoughts, I will not trouble you to send either of them to me, if you have not already. Pray keep them for me.

‘Stephen, who desires to be remembered by you, tells me that the churl, who won the belt, works with Nicholson, and has learnt his art from him, and that they divided the money between them.’