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William Godwin: his Friends and Contemporaries
Ch. VII. 1806-1811
William Godwin to Mary Jane Godwin, 2 September 1811

Contents Vol. I
Ch. I. 1756-1785
Ch. II. 1785-1788
Ch. III. 1788-1792
Ch. IV. 1793
Ch. V. 1783-1794
Ch. VI. 1794-1796
Ch. VII. 1759-1791
Ch. VII. 1791-1796
Ch. IX. 1797
Ch. X. 1797
Ch. XI. 1798
Ch. XII. 1799
Ch. XIII. 1800
Contents Vol. II
Ch. I. 1800
Ch. II. 1800
Ch. III. 1800
Ch. IV. 1801-1803
Ch. V. 1802-1803
Ch. VI. 1804-1806
Ch. VII. 1806-1811
Ch. VIII. 1811-1814
Ch. IX. 1812-1819
Ch. X. 1819-1824
Ch. XI. 1824-1832
Ch. XII. 1832-1836
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Newport, I. Of Wight, Sep. 2.

“I have not passed a pleasant day since I left Bognor till today. Portsmouth is detestable, and Ryde to me insipid. Dr Stoddart showed me a pretty park, and a pretty garden, and two pretty villas, dearly looked upon by gaping strangers, but this to me is nothing. I except, however, the voyage from Portsmouth to Ryde, six miles in length, and one hour in duration. This was delicious. But to-day I am this moment come from Carisbrooke Castle, a beautiful ruin in the first place, and in the second, the
prison in which
Charles I. was imprisoned for some months, and from which, with a short interval, he was conducted to his trial. They show a window through which he is said to have attempted his escape. I have just passed by the school-house where he is said to have met the Commissioners of Parliament, and made his last experiment for re-ascending the throne. There a monarch was arraigned, and now a school boy. It is with great regret that I refrain from risking a visit to the schoolmaster, and trying to make him talk over old times, and show me old walls. . . . The whole of this letter has been written in coffee rooms, where it is difficult to preserve the thread of narrative, but impossible to write sentiment. From Southampton I will endeavour to mix both; but I cannot help wishing briefly to put down my feelings in situations which I have just visited, and which I suppose certainly I shall never visit again.—Ever and ever yours,

W. Godwin.”