LORD  BYRON  and  his  TIMES
Documents Biography Criticism

Samuel Rogers and his Contemporaries
Samuel Rogers to Sarah Rogers, 1 September 1816

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: Sept. 1, 1816.

‘My dear Sarah,—Many thanks for your letter. The mountains and lakes are just as beautiful as ever, and have lost little by the comparison, so you may come and see them without apprehension. After all, I did not see the regatta, as Wordsworth was impatient for Ulleswater. We set off on Monday, and had two beautiful days for it. On Wednesday we dined at a Mr. Marshall’s, a Liverpool merchant, whose wife’s sister, living in a small house on the lake, said she had seen you at Mr. Lloyd’s, and slept at Keswick that night, since which we have had cold, wet and cheerless weather, but on Thursday there were races here on Crow Park on the lake notwithstanding, and on Friday I went up Causay Pike, a huge mountain, with Wordsworth, Southey, and Sir George Beaumont—nor have I ever dined at my inn but once, and then W. dined with me. Mrs. Wood has lost her old mother and her husband; and has married again, and is now Mrs. Jackson. She asked after you the first moment she saw me, and is the same tidy, civil lady as ever, and no older to my eyes. Southey’s house is a model of neatness and comfort, the admiration of Wordsworth, and I must say, a contrast to his. We have had two wet days, and
Lady B. lent me Dorothy’sTour in Scotland,” in which we are mentioned.1 It is full of sweetness, and very interesting from her dialogues with people in the fields and highways. She seems exceedingly affected hy the kind or sour looks of her hostess, and many of the last did they meet with on the high roads. A delightful air of na’ivte and benevolence and enthusiasm runs thro’ it, and I know you would enjoy it much. Take the last day’s history for a sample—

‘“Sunday, September 25, 1803.—A beautiful autumnal day. Breakfast at a public-house by the road-side. Dined at Threkeld. Arrived at home between eight and nine o’clock, where we found Mary in perfect health, Mary2 Hutchinson with her, and little Johnny asleep in the clothes-basket by the fire.

‘“Finished copying this journal May 31, 1805, in the moss hut at the top of the orchard. William, Mary, and I finished the moss hut on the afternoon of June 6, 1805. After the work was ended we all sate down in the middle of the seat, looking at the clouds in the west.”

‘But, after all, it leaves a sadness on the mind from the perpetual difficulties they had to struggle with—rain, fatigue, and bad accommodation. I am very sorry indeed to hear of Sutton. I was in hopes he was better before I left town, and wish with all my heart he was

1Mr. Rogers and his sister, whom we had seen at our own cottage at Grasmere a few days before, had arrived there that same afternoon on their way to the Highlands; but we did not see them till the next morning, and only for about a quarter of an hour’ (Recollections, &c., edited by J. C. Shairp, LL.D., p. 5).

2 It should be Joanna. In the published journal the entry at the close is omitted, but it is surely as characteristic as any the journal contains.

here with me. I have scarcely been warm since I left you, and a vile toothache such as I set out with on our journey abroad began in the night before I set out, and has seldom left me long. I have a glass of brandy now on the table, and dare not be without it night or day, but in other respects have been perfectly well. What will become of me I will not yet say, but I think I shall write in a day or two, and give up Scotland. To-day, snow fell in Borrowdale, and snow is visible from my garret window on several of the mountains. There is ice an inch thick on Skiddaw. No wonder, tho’ the sun shone a little to-day, everybody complains of the cold.
Southey says the winter is come three weeks earlier than he ever knew it. Farewell, my dearest Sarah, pray direct to me at the Post Office, Penrith, and with my love to all, believe me to be ever yours,

Samuel Rogers.’