LORD  BYRON  and  his  TIMES
Documents Biography Criticism

Literary Life of the Rev. William Harness
Robert Bland to William Harness, 22 March 1821

Chapter I.
Chapter II.
Chapter III.
Chapter IV.
Chapter V.
Chapter VI.
Chapter VII.
Chapter VIII.
Chapter IX.
Chapter X.
Chapter XI.
Chapter XII.
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“Kenilworth, 22nd March, 1821.
“My dear Harness,

“My work has been nominally published for two weeks and two days; really, I don’t believe it is published yet. How helpless am I, at this distance from head-quarters! Can you—will you—assist me in ascertaining whether it was advertised in the ‘Chronicle,’ ‘Courier,’ ‘Times’ and ‘Herald?’ Do me this favour by calling at the Royal Institution and looking over the files of the newspapers’; and again, in writing to me on this subject, just say whether you think the work published, in the sense of palam factum. As for writing tales, God knows, my dear friend, I feel but too far—too much inclined to indulge in this idle, heedless passion. I dream of cascades and that is βάθος ύλης so sweet, so inspiring, and so profitless, unless the dream be painted by more able brushes. No; should this work succeed, should the soothing breath of ‘Well done!’ speak comfort to my almost frozen heart, my vocation is irrevocably fixed, and the year rolls not away, provided I have health, unproductive of something more
genial than ‘Lord St. George.’ This latter, however, is but a too faithful picture of a country Barony; it is exact. If it fails, it fails for want of spirit, variety, wit, gravity, the intangible essence—in short, the graces necessary to verse. Who has read it? Do you know, and can you report any opinions? I mean, faithfully report them—ay, in all their asperities! Let me hear from you, my dear
Harness; and will you enclose for me the lines of Lord Byron to which you allude on the subject of Lord C——? I have never seen them, and think they might do me good.

“Most affectionately yours,
R. Bland.”