LORD  BYRON  and  his  TIMES
Documents Biography Criticism

The Autobiography of William Jerdan
Henry Nugent Bell to William Jercan, 21 November 1820

Vol. I. Front Matter
Ch. 1: Introductory
Ch. 2: Childhood
Ch. 3: Boyhood
Ch. 4: London
Ch. 5: Companions
Ch. 6: The Cypher
Ch. 7: Edinburgh
Ch. 8: Edinburgh
Ch. 9: Excursion
Ch. 10: Naval Services
Ch. 11: Periodical Press
Ch. 12: Periodical Press
Ch. 13: Past Times
Ch. 14: Past Times
Ch. 15: Literary
Ch. 16: War & Jubilees
Ch. 17: The Criminal
Ch. 18: Mr. Perceval
Ch. 19: Poets
Ch. 20: The Sun
Ch. 21: Sun Anecdotes
Ch. 22: Paris in 1814
Ch. 23: Paris in 1814
Ch. 24: Byron
Vol. I. Appendices
Scott Anecdote
Burns Anecdote
Life of Thomson
John Stuart Jerdan
Scottish Lawyers
Sleepless Woman
Canning Anecdote
Southey in The Sun
Hood’s Lamia
Murder of Perceval
Vol. II. Front Matter
Ch. 1: Literary
Ch. 2: Mr. Canning
Ch. 3: The Sun
Ch. 4: Amusements
Ch. 5: Misfortune
Ch. 6: Shreds & Patches
Ch. 7: A Character
Ch. 8: Varieties
Ch. 9: Ingratitude
Ch. 10: Robert Burns
Ch. 11: Canning
Ch. 12: Litigation
Ch. 13: The Sun
Ch. 14: Literary Gazette
Ch. 15: Literary Gazette
Ch. 16: John Trotter
Ch. 17: Contributors
Ch. 18: Poets
Ch 19: Peter Pindar
Ch 20: Lord Munster
Ch 21: My Writings
Vol. II. Appendices
The Satirist.
Authors and Artists.
The Treasury
Morning Chronicle
Chevalier Taylor
Foreign Journals
Vol. III. Front Matter
Ch. 1: Literary Pursuits
Ch. 2: Literary Labour
Ch. 3: Poetry
Ch. 4: Coleridge
Ch 5: Criticisms
Ch. 6: Wm Gifford
Ch. 7: W. H. Pyne
Ch. 8: Bernard Barton
Ch. 9: Insanity
Ch. 10: The R.S.L.
Ch. 11: The R.S.L.
Ch. 12: L.E.L.
Ch. 13: L.E.L.
Ch. 14: The Past
Ch. 15: Literati
Ch. 16: A. Conway
Ch. 17: Wellesleys
Ch. 18: Literary Gazette
Ch. 19: James Perry
Ch. 20: Personal Affairs
Vol. III. Appendices
Literary Poverty
Ismael Fitzadam
Mr. Tompkisson
Mrs. Hemans
A New Review
Debrett’s Peerage
Procter’s Poems
Poems by Others
Poems by Jerdan
Vol. IV. Front Matter
Ch. 1: Critical Glances
Ch. 2: Personal Notes
Ch. 3: Fresh Start
Ch. 4: Thomas Hunt
Ch. 5: On Life
Ch. 6: Periodical Press
Ch. 7: Quarterly Review
Ch. 8: My Own Life
Ch. 9: Mr. Canning
Ch. 10: Anecdotes
Ch. 11: Bulwer-Lytton
Ch. 12: G. P. R. James
Ch. 13: Finance
Ch. 14: Private Life
Ch. 15: Learned Societies
Ch. 16: British Association
Ch. 17: Literary Characters
Ch. 18: Literary List
Ch. 19: Club Law
Ch. 20: Conclusion
Vol. IV. Appendix
Gerald Griffin
W. H. Ainsworth
James Weddell
The Last Bottle
N. T. Carrington
The Literary Fund
Letter from L.E.L.
Geographical Society
Baby, a Memoir
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“10, Royal Terrace, Adelphi, Strand,
21st Nov., 1820.
Mr Dear Sir,

“Addressing you at last in propriâ persona on a subject, to which I have so often before called your attention, under the nom de guerre, or rather de mer, of Philo-Nauticus, I really do not well know what terms of apology to use in reference to my multiplied trespasses, or of acknowledgment, when I consider the truly liberal feeling evinced by you on the occasion. But would I not wrong that generous feeling by attempting excuses for making you a party to an act of humanity towards unfriended talent, or even thanking you for your ready co-operation? And is it not better at once to turn over to you the original cause of all, Fitzadam himself, who, Bellerophon-like perhaps, is the bearer of this. On him, therefore, let fall your ‘horrible pleasure.’ I have delayed for several days past in the hope of finding a leisure hour to accompany him; but my avocations and studies are so pressing on the one hand, and my impatience that he should be known to you so great on the other, that I have adopted the plan of writing with him

* The doctor’s compliment must have been paid either in one of his dogmatic moods, or from a desire to conciliate the good offices of the trade for the future. It could not be from feelings of gratitude for the patronage bestowed by the booksellers upon himself: for the publishers, at that time, were nearly all vulgar turn-pennies, ignorant of the nature of the goods in which they dealt, and not half so skilful in their way as butchers, who are knowing patrons of sheep and oxen, or poulterers, who are the patrons of turkeys, geese, and fowls—educated at cattle shows, and by their own gustativeness! A much superior order now prevails; though difficult enough to deal with.

for the present. I will, however, have the pleasure of seeing you shortly on the subject, as well as on that of
my own book, of which I am preparing a second edition, with additional embellishments, and which perhaps you may deem not unworthy of a brief notice in due time. Mr. Fitzadam is apprised of the circumstance of our correspondence, and of your liberal exertions on his behalf, and to him I must refer you for any desired information. I am satisfied you will advise him (novice as he is in these matters) as to the best means of profiting by his published as well as his forthcoming poems. I am afraid this ill-chosen publisher (Whitmore) has been infected with his own indifference.

Perhaps in other and more active hands we might help him to fight his ‘battle over again,’ in a new edition, and this recommending him to the notice of the Admiralty and the public at large, succeed in rescuing him from that state of precarious dependence, so galling to the spirit, and so fatal to the efforts of genius.

“I remain, my dear Sir,
“Your obliged and faithful servant,
W. Jerdan, Esq.