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J. B. LippiNcoTT Company 

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This book grew from the discovery, in 1 894, 
of two masses of correspondence relating to 
the family of Charles Lloyd (1748-1828), the 
Quaker philanthropist and banker of Birming- 
ham. The papers, which are very numerous, 
contain upwards of twenty new letters of 
Charles Lamb, some of them worthy to rank 
with his best, and others, also hitherto un- 
published, of Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Wil- 
liam Wordsworth, Thomas Manning, Robert 
Southey, Thomas Clarkson, Anna Seward, 
Catherine Hutton, Priscilla Lloyd (1781-1815), 
who married Christopher Wordsworth, Charles 
Lloyd the poet (1775-1839), Robert Lloyd his 
brother (1778-1811), and Mr. Lloyd himself 
With the aid of these letters, and information 
contained in volumes bearing upon the period, 
it has been possible to tell, at any rate in out- 
line, the story of a notable family. 


The Lloyds with whom we have intercourse 
in these documents, though they were not of 
remarkable intellectual achievement, possessed 
very fully that gift of interest for which so 
many Quakers have been conspicuous. All, 
in one way or another, were interesting. Mr. 
Lloyd, the father, had much of Mr. Gladstone's 
mental vigour and variousness. Publicly he 
was concerned in large schemes of benevo- 
lence ; in private he played the scholar to such 
purpose as to draw praise from that very honest 
critic, Charles Lamb. Mr. Lloyd's eldest son, 
Charles, also interested Lamb, lived for a while 
with Coleridge, and later in life was the friend 
of " Christopher North," De Quincey, and 
Macready ; while Robert Lloyd, another son, 
completely won Lamb's sympathies and en- 
gaged him in a correspondence which leaves 
literature the richer. 

Whether any more Lamb letters are forth- 
coming is a question for the future to answer. 
The fact that those printed in this volume lay 
hidden for more than eighty years is indication 


enough that others still may exist, awaiting the 
moment appointed by fate for their discovery. 
In Canon Ainger's edition of Lamb's " Letters," 
for example, Elia's epistolary activity in 1798 
is represented by but eight letters, and in 1799 
by the same number ; whereas it is reasonable 
to assume that in those years he wrote to one 
friend or another at least once a week. It 
should be added that in the twenty-three new 
letters of Lamb which follow occasional modi- 
fications of punctuation have been made. 

The three Coleridge letters were written 
while Charles Lloyd was domesticated with 
Coleridge as pupil in 1 796. They belong to a 
period when the philosopher was casting about 
for some definite plan of campaign, and help 
sensibly towards completing our portrait of 
that noticeable man. Later, in correspondence 
passing between the Lloyds, are certain acute 
observations on the great mind. 

Among the books which have been found 
most useful in corroborating and fortifying the 
information contained in these papers must be 


mentioned Canon Ainger's edition of Lamb's 
" Letters," Mr. Emest Hartley Coleridge's 
edition of Coleridge's " Letters," the late Mr. 
Dykes Campbell's edition of Coleridge's 
" Poems," De Quincey's " Autobiography," the 
"Dictionary of National Biography," Mrs. 
Sandford's " Thomas Poole and His Friends," 
and the late Bishop Charles Wordsworth's 
" Annals of my Early Life." 

At the time of the discovery of the MSS. a 
description of a portion of them was printed in 
the " Birmingham Daily Post" (for February 4, 
1 895) ; a few weeks later an account of certain 
others was contributed to the " Athenaeum" 
(for March 2, 1895), by Dr. James Gow; and 
two articles telling the story of the friendship 
of Charles Lamb and Robert Lloyd, and giving 
certain extracts from their letters, appeared in 
the " Cornhill" and in " Lippincott's" for May 
and June of the present year. But the docu- 
ments that follow are now for the first time 
made public in their entirety. 

The Coleridge letters are here printed by 


arrangement with the poet's grandson, Mr 
Ernest Hartley Coleridge, and other letters by 
permission of Canon Manning, Mr. Gordon 
Wordsworth, and other representatives of the 
writers. For the portraits of Charles Lloyd 
and Sophia Lloyd, now for the first time re- 
produced, I am indebted to the courtesy of Mr. 
C. A. Lloyd. They were painted by Constable, 
who visited Birmingham as the guest of James 
Lloyd, another son of Bingley Hall, early in 
the century. Thanks are also due, for infor- 
mation and help, to Mr. and Mrs. F. H. Steeds, 
Mr. Henry Crewdson, and Mr. Charles Linnell ; 
and, for his kindness in reading the proofs and 
advising thereon, to Mr. W. P. Ker. 

E. V. L. 

London: October iS^i 



I. — The Lloyds 15 

II. — Coleridge and Charles Lloyd .... 27 

III. — Coleridge, Lamb, and Charles Lloyd 51 

IV. — ** Edmund Oliver" and the " Theses" 64 

V. — " The Anti-Jacobin" 85 

VI. — Charles Lamb and Robert Lloyd . . 94 

VII. — Thomas Manning and Robert Lloyd . 118 

VIII. — Charles Lamb as Critic 136 

IX. — Robert Lloyd's Marriage 162 

X. — Robert Lloyd's London Visit .... 170 

XI. — Robert Lloyd's Death 187 

XII. — Mr. Lloyd's "Iliad" 194 

XIII. — Mr. Lloyd's " Odyssey" 229 

XIV. — Mr. Lloyd's " Horace" 245 

XV. — Charles Lloyd at Old Brathay . . . 259 

XVI. — Charles Lloyd in London 275 

XVII — Mr. Lloyd's Later Years 297 

Index 317 



Charles Lamb Frontispiece 

From a painting by fVilliam Haxlitt. 


Samuel Taylor Coleridge To face 30 

From a fainting by Peter Vandyke. 

Facsimile of a Letter from Charles 

Lamb to Robert Lloyd " 107 

Charles Lloyd (i 775-1 839) " 260 

From a painting by John Constable. 

Sophia Lloyd and Child (Sophia) . . •* 288 

From a painting by jfohn Constable. 






The Lloyds, an old and honourable Welsh 
family, were seated for many generations at 
Dolobran, in Montgomery. The present mem- 
bers, who are of unusual numerical strength, 
trace their descent both to the Kings of Dyfed 
and — through the marriage of Charles Lloyd of 
Dolobran (1637-1698) with Ehzabeth Lort — 
to Edward L 

This Charles Lloyd and his brother Thomas 
were the first Quakers in the family. Like so 
many of the warriors for spiritual liberty gath- 
ered under George Fox's bloodless flag, they did 
not escape suffering and persecution. Charles 
Lloyd, indeed, had a full share, for in 1662 he 
was thrown into prison at Welshpool for refus- 



ing to take the oaths of allegiance and suprem- 
acy, and not for ten years was he at large again. 
Thither his wife accompanied him, and it was 
under these distressing conditions that their 
eldest son Charles was born. Although still an 
offender, Charles Lloyd was allowed by his 
judge, Lord Herbert, to leave the prison and 
remain under inspection and restraint in a house 
at Welshpool, where his second son, Sampson 
Lloyd, was born in 1664. Eight years later, on 
the pronouncement of the royal Declaration of 
Indulgence, Charles Lloyd was again able to 
return to Dolobran. His spirit was in no re- 
spect broken, and his after life, which did not 
terminate until 1 698, was zealous for the brave 
little sect he had joined. 

His first son, Charles Lloyd (1662-1747), 
who succeeded him at Dolobran, greatly im- 
proved the estate, and set up furnaces for the 
forging of charcoal iron ; while the second son, 
Sampson Lloyd (1664-1724), moved to Bir- 
mingham, where he opened an iron warehouse 
in connection with this new industry, and was 
able without molestation — for Birmingham was 
friendly to Nonconformists — to pursue his way 

as a follower of George Fox. 



Sampson Lloyd was married twice : first, in 
1685, to Elizabeth Good, and secondly, in 
1695, to Mary Crowley. By the second wife 
he had two daughters and four sons, one of 
whom was Sampson Lloyd, of Birmingham 
and Farm (1699-1779), ironmaster, and the 
founder of Lloyds Bank. 

This Sampson Lloyd also married twice. 
He wedded first with Sarah Parks, of Birming- 
ham, a union from which sprang Sampson 
Lloyd (1728-1807), and through him the 
Lloyds of Farm, of whom the history may be 
read in the little record called " Farm and its 
Inhabitants," privately printed for the family in 
1883.' From Sampson Lloyd's second mar- 

* It was this Sampson Lloyd whom Dr. Johnson, who disliked 
Quakers as a sect, but could be attracted by them individually, visited, 
with Boswell, in 1776 : " We next," Boswell wrote, " called on Mr. 
Lloyd, one of the people called Quakers. He too was not at home, 
but Mrs. Lloyd was, and received us courteously, and asked us to din- 
ner. Johnson said to me, ' After the uncsA-tainty of all human 
things at Hector's, this invitation came very well." " At dinner, Mr. 
Lloyd having returned, the Doctor, addressing his host and hostess 
(who had many children), remarked : " Marriage is the best state for 
a man in general ; and every man is a worse man in proportion as he 
is unfit for the married state." Subsequently both the Doctor and 
Mr. Lloyd were lured into error during a discussion on Baptism. The 
only other remark of the great man recorded by Boswell was this : 
" The church does not superstitiously observe days, merely as days, 
2 17 


riage — with Rachel Champion, of Bristol — 
came the family with which this book is con- 
cerned, Charles Lloyd, of Bingley, who suc- 
ceeded to the bank, being the fourth son. 

Charles Lloyd, of Bingley, was born August 
23, 1 748. He was educated with the thorough- 
ness common at that time to the children of 
wealthy Quakers ; and being gifted with a 
memory of singular power, he learned much. 
Although, in accordance with his father's prin- 
ciples, a period at a university could not round 
otf his boyhood, Charles Lloyd must have en- 
tered business with a larger store of classical 
knowledge than many masters of arts can 

He married, in 1774, Mary Farmer, who 
also was of the Friends, and they had, like 
most Lloyds, a very large family,^ of whom 

but as memorials of important facts. Christmas might be kept as well 
upon one day of the year as another ; but there should be a stated 
day for commemorating the birth of our Saviour, because there is 
danger that what may be done on any day, will be neglected." Dr. 
Johnson, it should be noted, was in his youth in love with a Quakeress 
named Olivia Lloyd (possibly his host's aunt of that name), to whom 
he wrote a copy of amatory verses, which do not, however, exist. 

' Yet as to its precise dimensions opinions differ. In " Farm and 
its Inhabitants" the number is given as 12; Bishop Wordsworth, of 
St. Andrews, a grandson of Mr. Lloyd, says 15 ; and De Quincey, 17 



Charles Lloyd, bom in lyy^, the friend of 
Coleridge and Lamb, was the first, and Robert, 
born in 1778, Lamb's correspondent in the fol- 
lowing pages, the third. 

Mrs. Lloyd, who lived until 1821, was a 
woman of great sweetness of character — " the 
kindest and tenderest mother," wrote her eldest 
son after her death. "She was humble," he 
added in the same memoir, " even to profound 
self-abasedness : disinterested even to nobility 
of soul : and self-denying, and devout, to a 
degree which those who give the preference to 
the active over the passive virtues, would call 
ascetic and mystical : but with all this rigidity 
and austerity as respected herself, she was of all 
human beings, and in many striking instances 
she evinced this, the most disposed to extenuate 
the failings of the inconsistent, to check the 
despair of the culpable, and to wipe the tear of 
shame and penitence from the cheek of the 
victim to ' the Sin which most easily besetteth 
him.' This, as many can testify, is not pane- 
gyric, but plain and unvarnished truth." And 

or 18. Foster's " Royal Lineage" enumerates 14, three dying in in- 



in a poem inspired by the death of his mother, 
Charles Lloyd also wrote of her charity of 
mind and purse : 

In thee it was 
A fresh, gratuitous, and healthful spring. 
Like that of living waters. 

And again : 

In that warm bosom there did dwell enshrined 
A human microcosm, which reflected 
All the mind's accidents. 

Mr. Lloyd, — as hereafter, for the sake of 
distinction, her husband may be called, — was 
of extraordinary intellectual vigour. He con- 
trived, while neglecting neither his business, 
which prospered continuously under his care, 
nor his family, to concern himself intimately 
in public affairs, both of Birmingham and the 
country. The following passage from an ex- 
cellent account of Mr. Lloyd in the Gentleman's 
Magazine, March, 1828, is illuminative: 

In the pursuit of any object of his attention, he suf- 
fered no other to interfere with or distract it, and he 
possessed the power of turning, after laborious investi- 
gations, with surprising freshness to occupations requiring 
intellectual exertions of a different nature. Few men, 



perhaps, so rich in resources, had them so much at com- 
mand. He embraced with promptness, and zealously 
prosecuted, whatever appeared to his comprehensive 
mind conducive to the benefit of his species, or the 
happiness of those connected with him. He was an un- 
wearied and able member of that body of Philanthropists, 
to whose persevering efforts Great Britain is indebted for 
the removal of that foulest stain upon her annals — the 
Slave Trade. Nor have his efforts ever slackened to aid 
the plans proposed for the amelioration of the condition 
of the Negro population of our dominions in the West 
Indies ; and although he wished for the trial of more 
moderate measures than those proposed by many of the 
advocates for emancipation, yet he generally concurred in 
the principles advocated in Parliament by his nephew, 
Mr. Buxton [afterwards Sir Thomas Powell Buxton, 
( 1 786-1 845)], and he always took the lead on public 
occasions when this subject was brought forward in 
Birmingham. A lover of peace and an admirer of the 
constitution of his country, he deprecated, in common 
with all the friends of humanity, the unwise measures 
which the ministry of Lord North in 1775 were con- 
templating for stifling opposition to its will in the North 
American colonies. When all negotiation seemed fruitless, 
and the overbearing conduct of the Minister had determined 
Dr. Franklin to depart ; when the horrors of civil war 
and the disunion of the Empire seemed inevitable ; Mr. 
Lloyd and his brother-in-law, Mr. David Barclay, did 
not consider affairs so irretrievable as not to warrant an- 
other attempt at reconciliation. After much persuasion 
and entreaty. Dr. Franklin yielded, and he told his 



friends that, though he considered the attempt hopeless, 
yet he could not resist the desire he felt, in common with 
them, to preserve peace. Some minor concessions were 
made by the Colonies at the suggestions of these gentle- 
men. Lord North, as is known, was inexorable, and the 
Envoy returned from the conference, the last which a 
representative from that country had with an English 
cabinet, until she sent her plenipotentiary to treat as a 
Sovereign Republic. 

Mr. Lloyd was also a leading figure in the 
Bible Society, and to his expenditure of money 
and effort the Birmingham General Hospital 
owes the beginnings of its large usefulness. 

To quote again from the same biographical 
notice : " What minds less energetic would 
have deemed studies of no trifling nature, were 
allotted for the occupation of those hours 
which he considered set apart for relaxation. 
His acquaintance with ancient and modern his- 
tory was accurate and extensive, and he read 
in several European languages their works of 
note. Few men were better versed in the Holy 
Scriptures, or more complete masters of their 
contents. He could repeat from memory sev- 
eral entire Books of the Old Testament and 
the greatest part of the New, and was well 
versed in theological learning. But next to 


the Scriptures, the classics were his favourite 
study. When past sixty he commenced a 
translation of Homer, and executed a faithful 
and agreeable version of the whole of the 
' Odyssey' and great part of the ' Iliad.' " Mr. 
Lloyd also turned his attention to Horace, 
translating several of the Epistles into easy 
verse ; but to these pleasant tasks we shall refer 
again. " Virgil," the writer in the Gentleman's 
Magazine continued, " was very familiar to 
him ; his extraordinary memory retained to the 
close of his life the whole of the ' Georgics' 
and ' Bucolics.' The agreeable picture of farm- 
ing so beautifully portrayed in those inimitable 
descriptions of pastoral life, induced Mr. Lloyd 
to take one of his estates into his own hands, 
and for thirty years he farmed under his own 
inspection nearly two hundred acres. [This 
was at Olton Green, of which more later.] 
One day in the week was at least devoted to 
this pursuit, and the relaxation which this in- 
teresting employment yielded him, contributed, 
in conjunction with temperance and cheerful- 
ness, to keep a naturally delicate constitution 
in health and vigour to a late period of his 



We have glimpses of Mr. Lloyd's domestic 
thoroughness, his capacity for keeping in touch 
with every member of his household, in his 
letters to his sons at school, a few of which 
have been preserved. Here are typical extracts 
from one addressed to Robert, Thomas, and 
Plumstead Lloyd, in 1792 : 

" I have sent you some paper, a spade, pen- 
cils, and painting brushes, and a ' Virgil' and 
' Selecta,' &c., all which you will, I hope, make 
a good use of, ... I observe your request for 
fishing rods, but I do not wish you to be too 
frequent in using them, for it is cruel to the 
poor worms, who are put to great torture. I 
have not sent any rods, thinking if your Master 
approves of your fishing now and then, that 
long Osier twigs will do as well as any rods. 
As you have already plenty of books, I would 
have you be diligent in reading them, for a few 
books well chosen and frequently read are much 
better than a great number ill-chosen. . . . 
Tho' you are very young, yet you are old 
enough to know and consider that life is very 
uncertain, and the Youth as well as the Old are 
often summoned to the Silent Grave ; but these 

reflections, my dear Boys, have no occasion to 



make you sorrowful, for if wc do what is right, 
Death can never come at an unsuitable time." 
In another letter we find him dealing with 
matters usually left to the mother's care : " I 
think the breeches Robert had on at Warwick 
were very good ones, but if he wants another 
pair, let the Shipston Tailor make them ; but be 
sure, mind, that he makes them long enough." 
This sufficiently proves Mr. Lloyd's vigilance 
as a father. From his thoughtful plans for his 
children's pleasure we learn that he was more 
than merely vigilant : he possessed the kindly 
faculty — which may be imaginative sympathy, 
and may be recollection of one's own childish 
days — that controls the choice of presents and 
ensures their congeniality. Mrs. Lloyd, once 
sending to Robert the latest news (and a cake) 
said : " Priscilla concludes to omit writing, so I 
may inform you of the arrival of the Squirrels, 
who came in their large House, plac'd upon a 
Waggon drawn by Six Horses, to the no small 
surprise and amusement of the spectators. We 
were a little puzzled where to fix them, but they 
were, after due deliberation^ plac'd below the 
Terrace, where they seem to enjoy good health 
and an excellent appetite. I forget whether 


your Papa had brought a little open Carriage 
for Caroline and Agatha before you went — the 
little girls are much amused with drawing it 
about the Garden." 

In Mr, Lloyd, in short, all the self-control, 
the sagacity, the dignity, the kindly benevo- 
lence, the even temperament, of the old-time 
Quaker were carried out to their fullest power. 





Charles Lloyd, born in 1 775, the eldest of 
the family, was a contemplative, self-conscious, 
sensitive youth, continuously afflicted with 
nervous weakness. He had much of the Lake 
poets' delight in scenery ; he was a profoundly 
interested inquirer into ethical questions ; he 
would examine an emotion with almost more 
assiduity than his master Rousseau himself; 
and quite early he ceased to subscribe to the 
teaching of Friends. Quaker families now and 
then produce such exotics. 

On leaving school early in the nineties, he 
followed the natural course of an eldest son 
and entered his father's business. For a while 
the work there was congenial, but in 1 794 his 
health gave way, and he descended from the 
high stool, never to return to it. On recover- 
ing, he proceeded to Edinburgh with some idea 

of studying medicine. Edinburgh, however, 


held him but a brief space, and we find him 
next, in 1 795, living with Wordsworth's friend, 
Thomas Wilkinson — Wilkinson of the spade 
— at Yanwath. It was there that Lloyd pro- 
duced his first volume of poems. " He has a 
poetical turn," wrote Wilkinson of his young 
friend, " and writes most beautiful verse. His 
attachment is to a pastoral life, as most natural 
and consistent with his own feelings. He 
would prefer life in the country with 100/. a 
year to 1,000/. in the town." 

Most introspective men, however confident 
and light-hearted they may afterwards become, 
are serious in the late teens. Letters from 
Charles Lloyd to his brother Robert, then ap- 
prentice at Saffron Walden, show him to have 
been doubly so. In 1794, the writer being 
then nineteen and Robert sixteen, Robert was 
thus adjured : " Do not give way to useless 
speculation. I advise you particularly to read 
Rousseau's ' Emilius,' in French if you can, 
and pray, out of regard to Charles^ who now 
earnestly entreats^ pay particular attention to the 
Savoyard vicar's confessions of faith, in the 
2nd or 3rd vol. Get that book at all events. 

Do not attend to the intricacies of sectarian 



peculiarities ; be a good man, retain a pure 
heart, but oh ! avoid alike the Quaker and the 
Libertine, the Methodist and the Atheist." 

In another letter, dated November 29, 1795, 
thirteen months later, a more miscellaneous 
course of reading was prescribed for the Saf- 
fron Walden apprentice. Charles began thus : 
" I am convinced that nothing tends so much 
to narrow the mind as sectarian and confin'd 
notions of religion and morality. The pure 
ardour of universal benevolence does not abate 
at the sight of a Lutheran or a Quaker, a 
Catholic or an Unbeliever. No I it considers 
all the petty, paltry distinctions of parties and 
sects, which would separate man from man 
and brother from brother, as originating in the 
weaknesses and prejudices of mankind ; it de- 
spises them all, and simply seeks by active 
usefulness, not by unintelligible dogmas, to 
diffuse good and enlarge the confin'd limit of 
human felicity." The following volumes were 
then recommended: Holcroft's "Anna St. Ives," 
Godwin's "Political Justice," Priestley's "Letters 
to a Philosophical Unbeliever" and " History 
of Christianity" (this might be either the " His- 
tory of the Corruptions of Christianity," or " A 



General History of the Christian Church," of 
which only the first two volumes were then 
in existence), Paley's "Evidence," Lindsey's 
"Apology" (for Unitarianism), and "Conver- 
sations" on the same subject. " When you 
have read these, all of which I am convinc'd 
it will be to your advantage to peruse, I shall 
then gladly point out other works." Finally 
came the advice to read Volney's " Ruins of 
Empire," but " with caution." 

Is it matter for surprise that the writer of 
these letters became the enthusiastic disciple 
of Coleridge, when that prophet, glowing with 
youth and belief in the power and lustre of 
his projected " Watchman," visited Birming- 
ham early in 1 796 *? 

One eloquent man is more, to young in- 
quirers, than all the books in the Bodleian, 
and Charles Lloyd had been waiting for years 
to meet with such a mind as Coleridge's — 
glowing and confident, tireless and persuasive 
— and he fell completely under the spell. A 
few months later Coleridge again stopped in 
Birmingham, on his return from Derby, where 
a school was in preparation for him, and the 
adoration of the young visionary (younger 



AGED 23. 

By Peter Vandyke. 

From a picture in the National Portrait Galtery. 


than Coleridge by two years) intensified. 
Charles Lloyd was then again living at home, 
building castles in the air which bore as little 
resemblance as might be to the family bank ; 
for, as Joseph Cottle wrote in his " Early Rec- 
ollections," " the tedious and unintellectual oc- 
cupation of adjusting pounds, shillings and 
pence" suits those alone who have never, " eagle- 
like, gazed at the sun or bathed their temples 
in the dews of Parnassus." 

Charles Lloyd desired with all his soul to 
lead the exalted existence of a philosopher and 
poet ; and already having written a number of 
sonnets of a meditative and melancholy cast, 
forsworn the paternal creed, and passed through 
a stage of acute Rousseauism, he was perhaps 
entitled to his dream. The first step to the 
consummation of this ambition was domesti- 
cation with Coleridge as pupil and friend ; and 
Coleridge, when the plan was suggested to 
him, seems to have been agreeable. It was, 
of course, a flattering proposal, likely to please 
any man, particularly a " Pantisocratist" of 
twenty-three. He even addressed to Charles 
Lloyd a poem describing some of the delights 
of their projected companionship : 



Together thus, the world's vain turmoil left, 
Stretch'd on the crag, and shadovv'd by the pine. 

And bending o'er the clear delicious fount. 
Ah! dearest youth ! it were a lot divine 
To cheat our noons in moralising mood. 
While west-winds fann'd our temples toil-bedew'd : 

Then downwards slope, oft pausing, from the mount. 
To some lone mansion, in some woody dale. 
Where smiling with blue eye, Domestic Bliss 
Gives this the Husband's, that the Brother's kiss ! 

And thus : — 

We'll smile at wealth, and learn to smile at fame. 
Our hopes, our knowledge, and our joys the same. 

As neighbouring fountains image each the whole : 
Then when the mind hath drunk its fill of truth 

We'll discipline the heart to pure delight. 
Rekindling sober joy's domestic flame. 
They whom I love shall love thee, honour'd youth ! 

Now may Heaven realise this vision bright ! 

And among Lloyd's poems, in the joint volume 
by himself, Coleridge and Lamb (1797), is an 
address to Coleridge, ending 

My Coleridge ! take the wanderer to thy breast. 
The youth who loves thee, and who, faint, would rest 
(Oft rack'd by hopes that frenzy and expire) 
In the long sabbath of subdued desire ! 



which we may suppose to have been written at 
the same period. 

In default of banking, for which there can 
be no doubt Charles Lloyd was peculiarly un- 
fitted, Mr. Lloyd still thought of the medical 
profession for his son. But there was no call 
for haste ; and when Charles mentioned his 
wish to join Coleridge, it was favourably enter- 
tained. After further consideration of the proj- 
ect, Mr. Lloyd invited Coleridge to pay another 
visit to Birmingham for the purpose of con- 
ference, and in September, 1796, Coleridge did 
so. While at the Lloyds' house he was sur- 
prised by an announcement that on the pre- 
vious day, September 19, he had become the 
father of a son. Straightway he hastened 
home ; and with him went Charles Lloyd, who 
thus enjoyed the privilege of being one of the 
first persons to welcome David Hartley Cole- 
ridge into this world. More : there is good 
reason to suppose, although another Charles — 
Charles Lamb — is also a candidate for the 
honour, that it was Charles Lloyd to whom the 
father addressed the sonnet inscribed " To a 
Friend who asked, How I felt when the nurse 
first presented my infant to me ;" which begins 
3 33 


Charles ! my slow heart was only sad, when first 
I scann'd that face of feeble infancy ; 

and ends thus charmingly : — 

So for the Mother's sake the Child was dear. 
And dearer was the Mother for the Child. 

To reach Coleridge's house when so im- 
portant an event was happening was to begin 
the companionship auspiciously, and Charles 
Lloyd was forthwith at home. " My mother," 
wrote Sara Coleridge in her notes to the " Bio- 
graphia Literaria," " has often told me how 
amiable Mr. Lloyd was as a youth ; how kind 
to her little Hartley ; how well content with cot- 
tage accommodation ; how painfully sensitive 
in all that related to the affections." Coleridge 
seems to have been genuinely attracted by his 
pupil. On September 24 we find him writing 
to his friend Thomas Poole : " Charles Lloyd 
wins upon me hourly ; his heart is uncom- 
monly pure, his affections delicate, and his be- 
nevolence enlivened but not sicklied by sensi- 
bility. He is assuredly a man of great genius ; 
but it must be in tite-a-ttte with one whom he 
loves and esteems that his colloquial powers 



open. ... I shall write on the other side of 
the paper two of Charles Lloyd's sonnets, which 
he wrote in one evening at Birmingham. The 
latter of them alludes to the conviction of the 
truth of Christianity, which he had received 
from me, for he had been, if not a deist, yet 
quite a sceptic." Thus favourably the experi- 
ment began. 

Mr. Lloyd, writing to Robert a few days 
later, informed him of the news in these 
words : — " Charles is gone to Bristol with in- 
tention of pursuing his studies under the care 
of S. T. Coleridge, a very sensible, religious 
man and an extraordinary poet, who was edu- 
cated for a clergyman, but for conscience sake 
declined that office. Thou mayst order Cole- 
ridge's ' Poems' of the bookseller at S. Walden 
(a small octavo) and charge them to my ac- 

The original arrangement was that Charles 
was to pay 80/. a year in return for board, 
lodging, instruction, and the companionship of 
his friend and mentor. At first it was sup- 
posed that the household would be located at 
Derby, where Coleridge, at the instigation of 
Dr. Crompton, had undertaken to open a 



school. But the following tremendous — almost 
Micawberesque — letter from Coleridge to Mr. 
Lloyd indicated a change of plans : — 

" Dear Sir, — As the father of Charles Lloyd 
you are of course in some measure interested in 
any alteration of my schemes of life ; and I 
feel it a kind of Duty to give you my reasons 
for any such alteration. I have declined my 
Derby connection, and determined to retire 
once for all and utterly from cities and towns : 
and am about to take a cottage and half a dozen 
acres of land in an enchanting Situation about 
eight miles from Bridgewater. My reasons 
are — that I have cause to believe my Health 
would be materially impaired by residing in 
a town, and by the close confinement and 
anxieties incident to the education of children ; 
that as my days would be dedicated to Dr. 
Crompton's children, and my evenings to a 
course of study with my admirable young 
friend, I should have scarcely a snatch of time 
for literary occupation ; and, above all, because 
I am anxious that my children should be bred 
up from earliest infancy in the simplicity of 
peasants, their food, dress, and habits com- 
pletely rustic. I never shall, and I never will, 



have any fortune to leave them : I will leave 
them therefore hearts that desire little, heads 
that know how little is to be desired, and hands 
and arms accustomed to earn that little. I am 
peculiarly delighted with the 2 1 st verse of the 
4th chapter of Tobit, ' And fear not, my son ! 
that we are made poor : for thou hast much 
wealth, if thou fear God, and depart from all 
sin and do that which is pleasing in His sight.' 
Indeed, if I live in cities, my children (if it 
please the All-good to preserve the one I have, 
and to give me more), my children, I say, will 
necessarily become acquainted with politicians 
and politics — a. set of men and a kind of 
study which I deem highly unfavourable to all 
Christian graces. I have myself erred greatly 
in this respect ; but, I trust, I have now seen 
my error. I have accordingly snapped my 
squeaking baby-trumpet of sedition, and have 
hung up its fragments in the chamber of Peni- 

"Your son and I are happy in our con- 

* Coleridge was so taken with this trope that he repeated it in a 
letter to George Coleridge some eighteen months after (" Letters," I., 
p. 243) : — " But I have snapped my squeaking baby-trumpet of sedi- 
tion, and the fragments lie scattered in the lumber-room of penitence." 



nection — our opinions and feelings are as nearly- 
alike as we can expect : and I rely upon the 
goodness of the All-good that we shall proceed 
to make each other better and wiser. Charles 
Lloyd is greatly averse from the common run 
of society — and so am I — but in a city I 
could scarcely avoid it. And this, too, has 
aided my decision in favour of my rustic 
scheme. We shall reside near a very dear 
friend of mine, a man versed from childhood 
in the toils of the Garden and the Field, and 
from whom I shall receive every addition to 
my comfort which an earthly friend and ad- 
viser can give. 

" My Wife requests to be remembered to 
you, if the word ' remember' can be properly 
used. You will mention my respects to your 
Wife and your children, and believe that I am 
with no mean esteem and regard 
" Your Friend, 

" S. T. Coleridge. 

"Saturday, 15th Oct., 1796." 

Coleridge, who at this time, it is instructive 
to note, was not quite twenty-four, wrote from 
Kingsdown, Bristol, where he then lived. The 



cottage glanced at was Nether Stowey, and 
the friend was Thomas Poole, who dwelt in 
that village. 

Although the suggestion of this letter is 
that Coleridge meant to give much time to 
Charles Lloyd, it is impossible to believe that 
under any conditions he would have been a 
satisfactory " coach." Especially at that period 
was he unfit for such drudgery : his brain was 
busy with a thousand projects ; he was un- 
settled ; he was poor ; the arrival of David 
Hartley Coleridge had disorganised the house ; 
and by constitution he detested the regular 
habits which a good instructor must observe. 
But we may suppose that the two men had 
continuous, if unsystematic, intercourse. Lloyd, 
whose mind was always acute, was even able 
now and then to help his master : " It is 
strange," wrote Coleridge to Poole, "that in 
the sonnet to Schiller I should have written, 
'that hour I would have wished to die — Lest 
aught more mean might stamp me mortal;^ 
the bull never struck me until Charles Lloyd 
mentioned it." 

By Coleridge's conversation, on the other 
hand, Lloyd was stimulated — though stimula- 



tion of this kind was at that period ever present 
with him — to write more poetry. While at 
Bristol he prepared a handsome folio in memory 
of his grandmother, entitled " Poems on the 
Death of Priscilla Farmer," for which Coleridge 
wrote the introductory sonnet, beginning 

The piteous sobs that choke the virgin's breath, 

and to which Charles Lamb contributed " The 
Grandam." " The following beautiful frag- 
ment," wrote Lloyd, by way of introduction to 
it, " was written by Charles Lamb, of the India 
House. Its subject being the same with that 
of my Poems, I was solicitous to have it 
printed with them : and I am indebted to a 
Friend of the Author's for the permission." 
" I can but notice," Lamb wrote, on receiving 
a copy of the book, " the odd coincidence of 
two young men, in one age, carolling their 
grandmothers." And again, referring to the 
splendour of the volume, " I cannot but smile 
to see my granny so gaily decked forth." 
Lloyd's sonnets were marked by very strong 
affection, but otherwise were not conspicuous. 

The date of Lamb's first letter to Charles 


Lloyd cannot be given, but the first mention 
of Lloyd's name in Lamb's letters to Coleridge 
occurs on October 24, 1 796. " My kind re- 
membrances to Lloyd," he wrote ; and hence- 
forward, for some months, the three men had 
common interests. 

Another poem written at this time by Cole- 
ridge, for his young friend's benefit, was the 
remonstrance entitled " Lines addressed to a 
young man of fortune who abandoned himself 
to an indolent and causeless melancholy," in 
which Lloyd was adjured to cease self-pity, 
and, rather, to 

Seek some widow^s grave ; whose dearer part 

Was slaughter'd, where o'er his uncofEned limbs 

The flocking flesh-birds scream'd ! Then, while thy 
Groans, and thine eye a fiercer sorrow dims. 

Know (and the truth shall kindle thy young mind) 

What Nature makes thee mourn, she bids thee heal ! ' 

The attack of melancholy that was meant may 
have been the precursor of the illness which 

' Mr. E. H. Coleridge suggests that possibly this stern admonition 
was first levelled by Coleridge against himself and afterwards trans- 
ferred to Lloyd. 



prostrated Lloyd in November, 1796. The 
following letter from Coleridge to Mr. Lloyd, 
in answer to one that is missing, tells the story. 
It also tells much that is interesting of Cole- 
ridge's own programme at that period : — 

"Dear Sir, — I received your letter, and thank 
you for that interest which you take in my 
welfare. The reasons which you urge against 
my present plan are mostly well-founded ; but 
they would apply equally against any other 
scheme of life which my Conscience would 
permit me to adopt. I might have a situation 
as a Unitarian minister, I might have lucrative 
offices as an active Politician ; but on both of 
these the Voice within puts a firm and un- 
wavering negative. Nothing remains for me 
but schoolmastership in a large town or my 
present plan. To the success of both, and 
indeed even to my subsisting in either, health 
and the possession of my faculties are necessary 
Requisites. While I possess these Requisites, 
/ know^ I can maintain myself and family in 
the COUNTRY ; the task of educating children 
suits not the activity of my mind, and the 

anxieties and confinement incident to it, added 



to the living in a town or city, would to a 
moral certainty ruin that Health and those 
faculties which, as I said before, are necessary 
to my gaining my livelihood in any way. Un- 
doubtedly, without fortune, or trade, or profes- 
sion it is impossible that I should be in any 
situation in which I must not be dependent on 
my own health and exertions for the bread of 
my family. I do not regret it — it will make 
me feel my dependence on the Almighty, and 
it will prevent my affections from being made 
earthly altogether. I praise God in all things, 
and feel that to His grace alone it is owing 
that I am enabled to praise Him in all things. 
You think my scheme monastic rather than 
Christian. Can he be deemed monastic who 
is married, and employed in rearing his chil- 
dren ? — who -personally preaches the truth to his 
friends and neighbours, and who endeavours 
to instruct tho' Absent by the Press *? In what 
line of Life could I be more actively employed ? 
and what titles, that are dear and venerable, are 
there which I shall not possess, God permit my 
present resolutions to be realised *? Shall I not 
be an Agriculturist, an Husband, a Father, and 
a Friest after the order of Peace ? an hireless 


Priest ? ' Christianity teaches us to let our 
lights shine before men.' It does so — but it 
likewise bids us say, Our Father, lead us not 
[into] temptation I which how can he say 
with a safe conscience who voluntarily places 
himself in those circumstances in which, if he 
believe Christ, he must acknowledge that it 
would be easier for a Camel to go thro* the eye 
of a needle than for him to enter into the 
Kingdom of Heaven *? Does not that man 
mock God who daily prays against temptations, 
yet daily places himself in the midst of the 
most formidable *? I meant to have written a 
few lines only respecting myself, because I 
have much and weighty matter to write con- 
cerning my friend, Charles Lloyd ; but I have 
been seduced into many words from the im- 
portance of the general truths on which I build 
my conduct. 

" While your Son remains with me, he will, 
of course, be acquiring that knowledge and 
those powers of Intellect which are necessary 
as iht foundation of excellence in all profes- 
sions, rather than the immediate science of any. 
Languages will engross one or two hours in 
every day : the elements of Chemistry, Geome- 



try, Mechanics, and Optics the remaining hours 
of study. After tolerable proficiency in these, 
we shall proceed to the study of Man and of 
Men — I mean, Metaphysics and History — and 
finally, to a thorough examination of the Jew- 
ish and Christian Dispensations, their doctrines 
and evidences : an examination necessary for 
all men, but peculiarly so to your son, if he 
be destined for a medical man. A Physician 
who should be even a Theist, still more a 
Christian^ would be a rarity indeed. I do not 
know one — and I know a great many Physi- 
cians. They are shallow Animals : having al- 
ways employed their minds about Body and 
Gut, they imagine that in the whole system of 
things there is nothing but Gut and Body." 

[Here followed an account of Charles 
Lloyd's health, which was just then, said 
Coleridge, so "unsatisfactory" as to shut out 
anything but amusement. In his anxiety, 
Coleridge called in Dr. Beddoes, the father of 
Thomas Lovell Beddoes, the poet, and a man 
of eminence in his profession : " I chose Dr. 
Beddoes," Coleridge explained, " because he is 
a philosopher^ and the knowledge of mind is 
essentially requisite in order to the well-treating 



of your Son's distemper." After quoting Dr. 
Beddoes's remarks Coleridge continued : " Such 
is Dr. Beddoes's written opinion. But he told 
me, that your Son's cure must be effected by 
Sympathy and Calmness — by being in com- 
pany with some one before whom he thought 
aloud on all subjects, and by being in situations 
perfectly according with the tenderness of his 
Disposition." Other remarks concerning diet 
and such matters followed, and the letter closed 
thus] : — 

" I hope your Health is confirmed, and that 
your Wife and children are well. Present my 
well-wishes. You are blessed with children 
who are pure in Heart — add to this Health, 
Competence, Social Affections, and Employ- 
ment, and you have a complete idea of Human 

" Believe me, 
" With esteem and friendly-heartedness, 
" Your obliged 

" S. T. Coleridge. 
"Monday, November 14th [1796]." 

It is not surprising, with Charles Lloyd in 

such a state and his own movements so im- 



peded — as his letters to Thomas Poole tell us 
that they then were — by domestic responsi- 
bilities and want of money, that Coleridge 
should wish to free himself from his undertak- 
ing with regard to his disciple. Hence Mr. 
Lloyd must have been more or less prepared 
for the letter — dated December 4, 1796 — that 
follows : — 

" Dear Sir, — I think it my duty to acquaint 
you with the nature of my connection with 
your Son. If he be to stay with me, I can 
neither be his tutor or fellow-student, nor in 
any way impart a regular system of knowledge. 
My days I shall devote to the acquirement of 
practical husbandry and horticulture, that as ' to 
beg I am ashamed,' I may at least be able * to 
dig :' and my evenings will be fully employed 
in fulfilling my engagements with the ' Critical 
Review' and 'New Monthly Magazine.' If, 
therefore, your Son occupy a room in my cot- 
tage, he will be there merely as a Lodger and 
Friend; and the only money I shall receive 
from him will be the sum which his board and 
lodging will cost me, and which, by an accurate 
calculation, I find will amount to half a guinea 


a week, exclusive of his washing, porter, cyder, 
spirits, in short any potation beyond table- 
beer — these he must provide himself with. I 
shall keep no servant. 

" I must add that Charles Lloyd must furnish 
his own bedroom. It is not in my power to 
do it myself without running into debt ; from 
which may Heaven amid its most angry dis- 
pensations preserve me I 

" When I mentioned the circumstances which 
rendered my literary engagement impracticable, 
when, I say, I first mentioned them to Charles 
Lloyd, and described the severe process of 
simplification which I had determined to adopt, 
I never dreamt that he would have desired to 
continue with me : and when at length he did 
manifest such a desire, I dissuaded him from it. 
But his feelings became vehement, and in the 
present state of his health it would have been 
as little prudent as humane in me to have given 
an absolute refusal. 

" Will you permit me. Sir ! to write of 

Charles Lloyd with freedom ? I do not think 

he ever will endure, whatever might be the 

consequences, to practise as a physician, or 

to undertake any commercial employment. 



What weight your authority might have, I 
know not : I doubt not he would struggle to 
submit to it — but would he succeed in any 
attempt to which his temper, feelings, and 
principles are inimical? . . . What then 
remains'? I know of nothing but agricul- 
ture. If his attachment to it should prove 
permanent, and he really acquired the steady 
dispositions of a practical farmer, I think 
you could wish nothing better for him than 
to see him married, and settled near you as 
a farmer. I love him, and do not think he 
will be well or happy till he is married and 

'' I have written plainly and decisively, my 
dear Sir ! I wish to avoid not only evil, but 
the appearances of evil. This is a world of 
calumnies ! Yea ! there is an imposthume in 
the large tongue of this world ever ready to 
break, and it is well to prevent the contents 
from being sputtered into one's face. My 
Wife thanks you for your kind inquiries re- 
specting her. She and our Infant are well — 
only the latter has met with a little accident — 
a burn which is doing well. 

" To Mrs. Lloyd and all your children pre- 

4 49 


sent my remembrances, and believe me in all 
esteem and friendliness, 

" Yours sincerely, 

" S. T. Coleridge.* 
•* Sunday, December 4, 1796." 

It was settled as Charles Lloyed wished. 
He then left Bristol to spend Christmas at 
home, and the Coleridges prepared to move to 
Nether Stowey, a transit which was accom- 
plished on the last day of 1796. 

* To this letter Mr. Lloyd seems to have returned the question, 
How could Coleridge live without companions ? The answer came 
quickly, as we learn from a letter from Coleridge to Poole (" Letters," 
i. p. 186) in which he mentions Mr. Lloyd's query and quotes his own 
characteristic reply : " I shall have six companions : My Sara, my 
babe, my own shaping and disquisitive mind, my books, my beloved 
friend Thomas Poole, and lastly. Nature looking at me with a thou- 
sand looks of beauty, and speaking to me in a thousand melodies of 
love. If I were capable of being tired with all these, I should then 
detect a vice in my nature, and would fly to habitual solitude to eradi" 
cate it." Coleridge's letter to Mr. Lloyd, containing this passage, 
seems to have been lost. 





Charles Lloyd first met Lamb in January, 
1 797. Quite unexpectedly, while Coleridge and 
his family were settling into the Stowey cottage, 
he visited Lamb in London. Lamb was im- 
pressed by him. " I will not tell you what I 
think of Lloyd," he wrote to Coleridge, " for 
he may by chance come to see this letter, and 
that thought puts a restraint on me ;" but there 
is no doubt but that Lamb was prepared for 
eulogy. A few days later, in another letter to 
Coleridge, Lamb wrote : — " The emotions I 
felt on his coming so unlocked for, are not ill- 
expressed in what follows, and what (if you do 
not object to them as too personal, and to the 
world obscure, or otherwise wanting in worth) 
I should wish to make a part of our little 
volume." The little volume was the joint 
collection of their poems which Coleridge 
and Lamb were then projecting, and Lamb's 


verses on Lloyd, which duly found a place In 
that book, ran thus : — 


Alone, obscure, without a friend. 

A cheerless, solitary thing. 
Why seeks my Lloyd the stranger out ? 

What offering can the stranger bring ? 

Of social scenes, home-bred delights. 
That him in ought compensate may 

For Stowey's pleasant winter nights. 
For loves and friendships far away. 

For brief oblivion to forego 

Friends, such as thine, so justly dear« 

And be awhile with me, content 
To stay, a kindly loiterer, here ? 

For this a gleam of random joy 

Hath flush'd my unaccustomed cheek ; 

And, with an o'er-charged bursting heart, 
I feel the thanks I cannot speak. 

O ! sweet are all the Muse's lays. 

And sweet the charm of matin bird — 

*Twas long, since these estranged ears 
The sweeter voice of friend had heard. 


The voice hath spoke : the pleasant sounds. 

In memory's ear, in after time. 
Shall tide, to sometimes rouse a tear. 

And sometimes prompt an honest rhyme. 

For when the transient charm is fled. 
And when the little week is o'er. 

To cheerless, friendless solitude 
When I return, as heretofore — 

Long, long, within my aching heart 
The grateful sense shall cherished be ; 

I'll think less meanly of myself. 

That Lloyd will sometimes think on me. 

Charles Lloyd was not a Coleridge, yet at 
that time Lamb must have found peculiar 
pleasure and solace in his company. Lamb, 
who was much in the shadow of the tragedy 
of the year before, needed a mind as serious 
and sympathetic as Charles Lloyd's, and their 
nearness in age — only two days separated them : 
both would be two-and-twenty in the following 
month — was an additional bond. Lloyd's 
spiritual life, in spite of his youth, had been 
fully lived, and though he lacked nimbleness, 
flexibility, fun, he was possessed of rare intel- 
lectual gifts, which at that time were more to 


Lamb's taste than humourous quickness. It is 
probable that the two friends spoke more of 
conduct than of Hterature. 

Lloyd rejoined Coleridge at Stowey early 
in February, 1797. Writing to his brother 
Robert, on March 2, he said, by way of excuse 
for not having written sooner : " At Stowey 
(where I have now been nearly three weeks) I 
have not been settled till yesterday week — 
having had my rooms to furnish, so that I only 
began to lodge at Coleridge's a week ago ; in 
the meantime I was visiting at Mr. Poole's, a 
friend of Coleridge." Later we come upon a 
sentence which to us, who accept Lamb, as a 
matter of course, as one of the great intellects, 
has an odd ring : " I left Charles Lamb very 
warmly interested in his favour, and have kept 
up a regular correspondence with him ever 
since ; he is a most interesting young man." 
It is sad that every letter in this correspond- 
ence has vanished. Saving the one note, dated 
1823, from Lamb to Lloyd, in Canon Ainger's 
edition of the " Letters," not a line remains. 
Charles Lloyd, however, must not be blamed. 
He seems carefully to have preserved all letters. 
It was not until after his death, when his son, 



Grosvenor Lloyd, came to examine the col- 
lection of papers, that the work of destruction 
set in. 

Lamb seems to have met Robert during 
Charles's January visit to town, for in the same 
letter from which quotations have just been 
made, Charles said : " Charles Lamb desir'd to 
be remember'd to you whenever I wrote. He 
took a great liking to you. God bless you, 
and preserve you virtuous and happy I" 

Meanwhile Lloyd had joined the poetical 
partnership of his two friends. At first Cole- 
ridge and Lamb were to make the volume be- 
tween them ; but when, in March, 1 797, the 
printing was almost complete, Coleridge wrote 
to Cottle, the publisher, saying that Charles 
Lloyd's poems were to be included too ; adding, 
with more commercial acumen than was usual 
with him, " Lloyd's connections will take off a 
great many [copies], more than a hundred." 

A very little while later Lloyd, who, as we 
have seen, had resumed his studies with Cole- 
ridge, in spite of Coleridge's statement that 
such studies must now cease (but Coleridge's 
statements were rarely absolute) again failed in 
health. The references to him in Lamb's let- 


ters to Coleridge during the spring of 1797 in- 
dicate that regular employment had become 
impossible. Unsettlement grew upon him, and 
in March or April he found it necessary to 
leave Stowey. Thus his domestication with 
Coleridge ended. " You will pray with me, I 
know, for his recovery," wrote Lamb, "for 
surely, Coleridge, an exquisiteness of feeling 
like this must border on derangement. But I 
love him more and more." 

Early in June the volume appeared: — "Poems 
by S. T. Coleridge, Second Edition. To which 
are added Poems by Charles Lamb and Charles 
Lloyd," the title-page bearing the following 
quotation : " ' Duplex nobis vinculum, et amici- 
tiffi et similium junctarumque Camcenarum ; 
quod utinam neque mors solvat neque tem- 
poris longinquitas !' GroscoU. Epist. ad Car. 
Utenhov. et Ptol. Lux. Tast." This motto, 
an invention of Coleridge's, in whose brain 
Groscollius had his only being, may be trans- 
lated freely : " Double is the bond which binds 
us — friendship, and a kindred taste in poetry. 
Would that neither death nor lapse of time 
could dissolve it I" To our eyes, accustomed 
to the taste which publishers now lavish on 



their products, the book is a homely enough 
little tome ; but Coleridge thought otherwise. 
" The volume is a most beautiful one," he 
wrote to Cottle. " You have determined that 
the three Bards shall walk up Parnassus in their 
best bib and tucker." 

It is late in the day to speak critically of 
this book, nor is this the place in which to do 
so. Coleridge's performances in the few years 
immediately following were such as to throw 
these early efforts and " effusions" into ob- 
scurity, and Lamb and Lloyd were wofully 
serious. Lloyd, especially, paraded his grief; 
his motto, from Bowles, being : — 

I wrap me in the mantle of distress. 
And tell my poor heart this is happiness. 

Altogether, considering what was to happen, we 
must look upon it as a luckless little volume. 

In June, 1797, we find Thomas Poole writ- 
ing to Lloyd for support in the fund he was 
collecting for Coleridge ; and in the same 
month Lloyd had sufficiently recovered to 
think of entertaining Lamb at Birmingham. 
Lamb, however, could not accept the invita- 
tion ; instead he paid the visit to Stowey which 


won for him the friendship of the Words worths 
(who had just settled at Alfoxden), and led to 
the composition of Coleridge's poem " This 
lime-tree bower my prison." Lloyd was not 
of the party. Two months or so after the 
Stowey holiday Lamb was able to leave town 
again, and he then accompanied Lloyd on a 
visit to Southey at Burton, a village near Christ- 
church, in Hampshire. 

Southey was then just twenty-three; his 
" Joan of Arc" had appeared two years before, 
and he was busily composing new verses and 
planning the " Annual Anthology" for Cottle. 
The visit was the beginning of a steady corre- 
spondence between Lamb and Southey, and 
possibly between Southey and Lloyd, but of 
that we have no record. 

In September, 1797, Lamb sent Coleridge 
his touching poem on the anniversary of his 
mother's death, and appended to it some lines 
suggested by Lloyd's mental distress : — " The 
following I wrote when I had returned from 
Charles Lloyd, leaving him behind at Burton, 
with Southey." To understand some of it you 
must remember that at that time he was very 
much perplexed in mind. 



A stranger, and alone, I pass'd those scenes 

We pass'd so late together ; and my heart 

Felt something like desertion, as I look'd 

Around me, and the pleasant voice of friend 

Was absent, and the cordial look was there 

No more, to smile on me. I thought on Lloyd — 

All he had been to me ! And now I go 

Again to mingle with a world impure ; 

With men who make a mock of holy things. 

Mistaken, and of man's best hope think scorn. 

The world does much to warp the heart of man ; 

And I may sometimes join its idiot laugh : 

Of this I now complain not. Deal with me. 

Omniscient Father, as Thou judgest best. 

And in Thy season soften Thou my heart. 

I pray not for myself. I pray for him 

Whose soul is sore perplexed. Shine Thou on him. 

Father of lights ! and in the difficult paths 

Make plain his way before him : his own thoughts 

May he not think — his own ends not pursue — 

So shall he best perform Thy will on earth. 

Greatest and best. Thy will be ever ours !" 

*' You use Lloyd very ill," Lamb added, " never 
writing to him. I tell you again that his is 
not a mind with which you should play tricks. 
He deserves more tenderness from you." 

At the end of the same month — September, 
1797 — in a letter to Robert, Lloyd wrote : — 

" I am at present with Southey at Bath. My 



principles and feelings remain just the same as 
when you saw me last. I shall be in London 
during the winter, and shall hope by some 
means or other to meet you there, or half way 
between London and Walden. Lamb often 
talks of you. I wish you would order from 
London (they are sold at Robinson's, London) 
a new edition of Coleridge's ' Poems' — it con- 
tains all mine and his, and is just come out. 
What are you reading"? Do write soon. I 
have been very ill since I last saw you, very ill 
indeed, so that I thought I never should re- 
cover ; but, thank God, I am now perfectly well." 
The fact of his recovery is thus sufficiently 
demonstrated. From this date — September, 
1797 — until the following year, we lose sight 
of Charles Lloyd. All that is known is that 
he did not again live with Coleridge, but pro- 
ceeded from Bath, probably by way of Bir- 
mingham, to London. Whether any cause 
but ill health had determined him not to re- 
turn to Stowey cannot be said. Possibly his 
friendship with Southey may have been an 
anti-Coleridgean influence, for the brothers-in- 
law were not on the best terms ; possibly other 

forces were in operation. 



But whatsoever the reason, it is clear that a 
coolness was growing, and from it probably 
came Coleridge's impulse to write the parody 
of himself and his friends' poetical mannerisms 
which belong to this period. The skit took 
the form of three " Sonnets in the Manner of 
Contemporary Writers," signed "Nehemiah 
Higginbottom," which appeared in the Monthly 
Magazine for November, 1797. In a letter to 
Cottle, Coleridge explained their purpose : — 

" I sent to the Monthly Magazine three mock 
Sonnets in ridicule of my own Poems, and 
Charles Lloyd's, and Charles Lamb's, &c., 
&c., exposing that affectation of unaffected- 
ness, of jumping and misplaced accent, in com- 
monplace epithets, flat lines forced into poetry 
by italics (signifying how well and mouthishly 
the author would read them), puny pathos^ 
&c., &c. The instances were all taken from 
myself and Lloyd and Lamb. I signed them 
* Nehemiah Higginbottom.' I think they may 
do good to our young Bards." 

Here are two of the " lessons :" — 

Pensive at eve on the hard world I mus'd. 
And my poor heart was sad ; so at the moon 


I gaz'd — and sigh'd and sigh'd ! — for ah ! how soon 
Eve darkens into night. Mine eye perus'd 
With tearful vacancy the dampy grass 
Which wept and glitter'd in the paly ray ; 
And I did pause me on my lonely way. 
And mused me on those wretched ones who pass 
O'er the black heath of Sorrow. But, alas ! 
Most of Myself I thought : when it befell 
That the sooth spirit of the breezy wood 
Breath'd in mine ear — "All this is very well; 
But much of one thing is for no thing good." 
Ah ! my poor heart's inexplicable swell ! 


! I do love thee, meek Simplicity ! 
For of thy lays the lulling simpleness 

Goes to my heart and soothes each small distress 
Distress though small, yet haply great to me ! 
' Tis true on Lady Fortune's gentlest pad 

1 amble on; yet, though I know not why. 
So sad I am ! — but should a friend and I 
Grow cool and miff, O ! I am very sad ! 
And then with sonnets and with sympathy 
My dreamy bosom's mystic woes I pall ; 
Now of my false friend plaining plaintively. 
Now raving at mankind in general ; 

But, whether sad or fierce, 'tis simple all. 
All very simple, meek Simplicity ! ' 

' One unforeseen result of the skit was Southey's determination to 
take the sonnet "To Simplicity" as an attack on himself. 



Lamb probably only laughed, but Lloyd was 
made of different stuff. He was, as we have 
seen, and as Coleridge perfectly well knew, 
a sensitive, affectionate, unworldly creature, 
destitute of fun and rich in ideals, who could 
ill understand an old friend and erstwhile spir- 
itual guide making a public mock of him and 
the poetry that had cost so much dear effort, 
and in which, however tamely, he had tried 
to give an expression of his best self. Ridi- 
cule is a medicine to be prescribed with great 
care: Lloyd certainly was not suited to take 
it. There can be no question that for the dis- 
sension which 1 798 was to bring forth, Nehe- 
miah Higginbottom was much to blame. 




In London, Charles Lloyd shared lodgings 
with James White, schoolfellow of Lamb, 
friend of chimney-sweepers, and the author of 
" Original Letters, &c., of Sir John Falstaff " 
(1796). "For hearty, joyous humour, tinged 
with Shakespearian fancy," says Talfourd, 
" White was held by Lamb to have no equal." 
"Among his intimates," says Gutch, a school- 
fellow of Lamb and White, " he was called 
* Sir John.' " The picture of this genial neo- 
Elizabethan presiding over a free supper to 
chimney-sweepers is one of the glories of" Elia." 
The passage is a commonplace, yet let a few 
sentences lend good humour to this book : — 

In those little temporary parlours three tables were spread 
with napery, not so fine as substantial, and at every board 
a comely hostess presided with her pan of hissing sausage. 
The nostrils of the young rogues dilated at the savour. 
James White, as head waiter, had charge of the first 



table ; and myself, with our trusty companion Bigod, or- 
dinarily ministered to the other two. There was clam- 
bering and jostling, you may be sure, who should get at 
the first table — for Rochester in his maddest days could 
not have done the humours of the scene with more spirit 
than my friend. After some general expression of thanks 
for the honour the company had done him, his inaugural 
ceremony was to clasp the greasy waist of old dame Ur- 
sula (the fattest of the three), that stood frying and fret- 
ting, half blessing, half cursing " the gentleman," and 
imprint upon her chaste lips a tender salute, whereat the 
universal host would set up a shout that tore the concave, 
while hundreds of grinning teeth startled the night with 
their brightness. O it was a pleasure to see the sable 
younkers lick in the unctuous meat, with his more 
unctuous sayings — how he could fit the tit-bits to the 
puny mouths, reserving the lengthier links for the seniors 
— how he would intercept a morsel even in the jaws of 
some young desperado, declaring it "must to the pan 
again to be browned, for it was not fit for a gentleman's 
eating" — how he would recommend this slice of white 
bread or that piece of kissing-crust to a tender juvenile, 
advising them all to have a care of cracking their teeth, 
which were their best patrimony, — how genteelly he 
would deal about the small ale, as if it were wine, nam- 
ing the brewer, and protesting, if it were not good, he 
should lose their custom ; with a special recommendation 
to wipe the lip before drinking. Then we had our toasts 
— " The King,"—" The Cloth,"— which, whether they 
understood or not, was equally diverting and flattering ; — 
and for a crowning sentiment, which never failed, " May 
5 65 


the Brush supersede the Laurel !" All these, and fifty 
other fancies, which were rather felt than comprehended 
by his guests, would he utter, standing upon tables, and 
prefacing every sentiment with a " Gentlemen, give me 
leave to propose so-and-so," which was a prodigious com- 
fort to those young orphans ; every now and then stuffing 
into his mouth (for it did not do to be squeamish on these 
occasions) indiscriminate pieces of those reeking sausages, 
which pleased them mightily, and was the savouriest part, 
you may believe, of the entertainment. 

'* Golden lads and lassies must. 
As chimney-sweepers, come to dust." 

James White is extinct, and with him these suppers 
have long ceased. He carried away with him half the 
fun of the world when he died — of my world at least. 

With such a character, then, was Lloyd liv- 
ing at the end of 1 797 and beginning of 1 798. 
" No two men," as Southey said, " could be 
imagined more unlike each other. Lloyd had 
no drollery in his nature ; White seemed to 
have nothing else. You will easily understand 
how Lamb could sympathise with both." 

It was during Lloyd's domestication with 
James White that the first signs of ill-feeling 
between Lloyd and Lamb were visible. In the 



middle of January, 1 798, Lamb wrote to Cole- 
ridge : — 

" I had well nigh quarrelled with Charles 
Lloyd ; and for no other reason, I believe, than 
that the good creature did all he could to make 
me happy. The truth is, I thought he tried to 
force my mind from its natural and proper 
bent. He continually wished me to be from 
home ; he was drawing me from the considera- 
tion of my poor dear Mary's situation, rather 
than assisting me to gain a proper view of it 
with religious consolations. I wanted to be 
left to the tendency of my own mind, in a soli- 
tary state, which, in times past, I knew had led 
to quietness and a patient bearing of the yoke. 
He was hurt that I was not more constantly 
with him ; but he was living with White, a 
man to whom I had never been accustomed to 
impart my dearest feelings^ tho' from long habits 
of friendliness, and many a social and good 
quality, I loved him very much. I met com- 
pany there sometimes — indiscriminate company. 
Any society almost, when I am in affliction, is 
sorely painful to me. I seem to breathe more 
freely, to think more collectedly, to feel more 

properly and calmly, when alone. All these 


things the good creature did with the kindest 
intentions in the world, but they produced in 
me nothing but soreness and discontent. I 
became, as he complained, 'jaundiced' towards 
him . . . but he has forgiven me ; and his 
smile, I hope, will draw all such humours from 

If, in connection with this letter. Lamb's 
touching elegiacs " The Old Familiar Faces," 
composed in the same month, are re-considered, 
one or two references may be made clear. For 
many years the fourth stanza : 

I have a friend, a kinder friend has no man : 
Like an ingrate, I left my friend abruptly ; 
Left him, to muse on the old familiar faces — 

was held to refer to Coleridge. But Canon 
Ainger, in the notes to his edition of Lamb's 
" Letters," has conclusively shown that Lloyd 
was meant ; Coleridge was the friend, " more 
than a brother," of the sixth stanza. 

Yet although Lamb and Lloyd were again 
perfectly reconciled, and were busy in preparing 
their joint volume of " Blank Verse," in which 
" The Old Familiar Faces" was first printed, 
more disaster was brewing. The story of the 



alienation of Coleridge from his two friends 
may best be told in the late Mr. Dykes Camp- 
bell's words: "In March [1798] there had 
been talk of a third edition of Coleridge's 
' Poems,' and on hearing of it Lloyd begged 
Cottle to ' persuade' Coleridge to omit his. 
This caused Coleridge to reply, smilingly 
["Letters," i. p. 238], that no persuasion was 
needed for the omission of verses published at 
the earnest request of the author ; and that 
though circumstances had made the Groscollian 
motto now look ridiculous, he accepted the 
punishment of his folly, closing his letter 
with the characteristically sententious reflection, 
' By past experience we build up our moral 
being.' " 

What happened after that is not clear, but 
Coleridge seems to have found in Lloyd cause 
for grief so intense that it led him to retire to 
the "lonely farmhouse between Porlock and 
Linton," where, to allay the disturbance of his 
mind, he had recourse to opium, and under its 
dire and seductive influence composed " Kubla 
Khan." (Coleridge himself assigns an earlier date 
to the poem, but Mr. Dykes Campbell's chron- 
ology is more trustworthy.) The poet continued 



to brood over the rupture of a friendship that 
had begun so auspiciously. In the middle of 
May, when his second child was born, we find 
him, in writing to Poole concerning an impend- 
ing bereavement, telling him that he can the 
better sympathise by reason of sorrows of his 
own that have " cut more deeply" into his heart 
" than they ought to have done ;" which Mr. 
Dykes Campbell considered a further allusion 
to Lloyd's attitude, and to the fact that Lamb 
was also becoming alienated. 

In June, 1 798, the worthy Cottle, hoping to 
patch up the disagreement, wrote to Lloyd 
urging him to visit Coleridge. "I cannot," 
was Lloyd's reply, " think that I have acted 
with, or from, passion towards him. Even my 
solitary night thoughts have been easy and 
calm when they have dwelt on him. ... I 
love Coleridge, and can forget all that has hap- 
pened. At present I could not well go to 
Stowey. I could scarcely excuse so sudden a 
removal from my parents. Lamb quitted me 
yesterday, after a fortnight's visit. I have been 
much interested in his society. I never knew 
him so happy in my life. I shall write to 

Coleridge to-day." 



On Coleridge's side there was, however, more 
to forgive : there was Lloyd's novel " Edmund 
Oliver." This was the young man's crowning 
offence, for in it he had made use of Coleridge's 
own experiences as Private Silas Tomkyn 
Comberbach. " The incidents," said the author 
in his preface, " relative to the army were given 
me by an intimate friend, who was himself eye- 
witness to one of them, and can produce testi- 
mony to the truth of the other two." That 
Coleridge's own story, told to Lloyd at his 
fireside, had been drawn upon, there can be no 
doubt. Moreover, the novel contained other 
passages which Coleridge was quick to apply 
to himself: Edmund Oliver's love-fits and de- 
parture from college tallied with his own ex- 
perience ; the description of him : " His large 
glistening eye — his dark eyebrows — there was 
the same bend in the shoulder . . . and the 
dark hair" — fitted Coleridge too ; and this piece 
of self-revelation in which Oliver elsewhere in- 
dulged was painfully applicable to the poet : 
" I have at all times a strange dreaminess about 
me, which makes me indifferent to the future, 
if I can by any means fill the present with sen- 
sations. With that dreaminess I have gone on 



here from day to day ; if at any time thought 
troubled, I have swallowed some spirits, or had 
recourse to my laudanum." Lloyd's conduct 
was indefensible, and Coleridge's anger, which 
was excessive, was not lessened by the circum- 
stance that the novel was dedicated to Lamb 
and published by Cottle. The book itself, 
which to-day would be labelled " psychological 
romance," is undeniably clever, although often 
extremely foolish. As a record of the emotions 
of a last century " sensitive plant" it is remark- 

Coleridge, it may be noted here, was not 
the only person who was troubled by the publi- 
cation of " Edmund Oliver." Mrs. Lloyd 
wrote thus to her son Robert on the subject : — 

"I am sorry thou shouldst have inform'd 
her [Mrs. Day, his employer's wife] that *E. 
Oliver' was published with our ' approbation 
and concurrence.' We were never consulted. 
For my own part I did not comprehend the 
nature of the Book till I saw it ; and tho' I 
fully allow there are some fine sentiments in it, 
thou well know'st it was far from having either 
thy Father's or my indiscriminate approbation 
— nay, I am sure there was one passage that 



wounded me to the quick, and thou must fre- 
quently have heard me say I hoped Charles 
would never be a Novel writer ; I can honestly 
say I should rather see him engaged in the 
most humble occupation that I thought con- 
sistent with Christian simplicity. With respect 
to these writings in general I most sincerely 
concur in sentiment with S. D. [Mrs. Day 
again], and wish it had been in my power to 
keep my Family as clear of them as she has 
done. Till I am convinc'd that the Christian 
Religion is a Fable, I shall never think the im- 
agination can riot in the delicious luxury of sen- 
timent and warm descriptions of the passions, 
and the Heart remain pure. I have studied 
the New Testament as much as most, but have 
never yet discover'd, with the philosophers of 
the present day, that the Christian warfare is 
accomplished by indulging the mind in every 
kind of dissipation provided we keep clear 
of gross vice. If this be the case, surely He 
who said ' Strait is the gate and narrow is 
the way,' and those who accounted themselves 
as ' Pilgrims and Strangers on the Earth,' were 
greatly mistaken" 

" Edmund Oliver" was Lloyd's unpardonable 


offence ; and hard upon it came Lamb's scorn- 
ful " Theses." Coleridge had written, presum- 
ably to Lloyd, " Poor Lamb, if he wants any 
knowledge he may apply to me," and the pas- 
sage had been brought to Lamb's notice. He 
replied with a sarcastic letter and this famous 
series of posers : — 



" Whether God loves a lying angel better than a true 
man ?" 


*' Whether the archangel Uriel could knowingly affirm 
an untruth, and whether, if he could, he would?'" 

" Whether honesty be an angelic virtue, or not rather 
belonging to that class of qualities which the schoolmen 
term * virtutes minus splendidae et hominis et terras nimis 
participes ' ?" 


** Whether the seraphim ardentes do not manifest their 
goodness by the way of vision and theory ? and whether 
practice be not a sub-celestial and merely human virtue ?'* 


" Whether the higher order of seraphim illuminati 
ever sneer i" 




" Whether pure intelligences can love, or whether they 
can love anything besides pure intellect ?" 

"Whether the beatific vision be anything more or less 
than a perpetual representment to each individual angel 
of his own present attainments, and future capabilities, 
something in the manner of mortal looking-glasses ?" 

" Whether an ' immortal and amenable soul' may not 
come to be damned at last, and the man never suspect it be- 

Coleridge, more in sorrow than in anger, 
sent Lamb's letter to Cottle, remarking " These 
young visionaries will do each other no good," 
and so was snapped the cord binding Coleridge 
and Lamb. 

Coleridge deeply felt the disagreement. In 
his " Letters" (p. 249 and onwards) may be 
found a copy of the long remonstrance which 
he addressed to Lamb on the subject. Mr. 
E. H. Coleridge dates it in the spring of 1 798 ; 
but more probably the time was the summer, 
after the receipt of Lamb's " Theses." For our 
purpose the following extract is sufficient : — 


"Both you and Lloyd became acquainted 
with me when your minds were far from being 
in a composed or natural state, and you clothed 
my image with a suit of notions and feelings 
which could belong to nothing human. You 
are restored to comparative saneness, and are 
merely wondering what is become of the Cole- 
ridge with whom you were so passionately in 
love ; Charles Lloyd's mind has only changed 
his disease, and he is now arraying his ci-devant 
angel in a flaming San Benito — the whole 
ground of the garment a dark brimstone, and 
plenty of little devils flourished out in black. 
Oh, me I Lamb, ' even in laughter the heart is 
sad.' " 

In after years Lamb threw the blame of the 

quarrel on Lloyd ; yet, although, as has been 

said, " Edmund Oliver" is indefensible, a word 

must be said for its author. It is true that 

Lloyd's deplorable habit of showing scraps of 

private letters to the very person above all 

others who should not have seen them was 

reprehensible enough, yet Coleridge, suspecting 

or knowing this habit, might have done better 

than to entrust to Lloyd remarks concerning 

Lamb which he did not wish Lamb to see ; and 



Lamb might either have forbidden Lloyd to 
read such remarks, or — coming by them thus 
iUicitly — have forgotten them. Lloyd, as far 
as it is possible to estimate his character, was 
a clean-hearted, unworldly man, innocent of 
guile. For such bad habits as he had, shrewd 
and humourous intelligences like Coleridge and 
Lamb might well have made allowances. But 
it is noticeable how often the sense of humour 
is dulled when loss of personal dignity is in- 

Again, say what one can for or against 
Lloyd, there is no doubt that without his 
assistance the relations between Lamb and 
Coleridge were inevitably doomed to a strain. 
When we remember that they both were very 
young — in 1798 Coleridge was twenty-six and 
Lamb twenty-three — and both poets, and both 
free critics of each other's work, we can under- 
stand any temporary coolness that may have 
arisen. Such quarrels always have occurred 
between young poets, and probably always will. 
They are regrettable to some extent ; yet " by 
past experience the moral being is built up," 
and the " falling out of faithful friends renew- 
ing is of love." In the case before us the 


love of both men was renewed and intensified. 
Their separation lasted only until the end of 
1799, and then they came together again, and 
together remained. 

Here, as a fitting close to a chapter too 
much occupied with dissension, Lamb's dedi- 
cation to Coleridge of the first collected edition 
of his works — issued in 1818 — may well be 
quoted : — 

It would be a kind of disloyalty^ to offer to anyone but 
yourself a volume containing the early pieces^ which were 
first published among your poems, and were fairly deriva- 
tives from you and them. My friend Lloyd and myself 
came into our first battle (authorship is a sort of warfare) 
under the cover of the greater Ajax. How this associa- 
tion, which shall always be a dear and proud recollection 
to me, came to be broken — who snapped the threefold 
cord, — whether yourself (but I know that was not the 
case) grew ashamed of your former companions, — or 
whether (which is by much the more probable) some un- 
gracious bookseller was author of the separation, — I can- 
not tell ; — but wanting the support of your friendly elm 
(I speak for myself), my vine has, since that time, put 
forth few or no fruits ; the sap (if ever it had any) has 
become, in a manner, dried up and extinct | and you will 
find your old associate, in his second volume, dwindled 
into prose and criticism. 

Am I right in assuming this as the cause ? or is it that, 
as years come upon us, (except with some more healthy, 



happy spirits,) Life itself loses much of its Poetry for 
us ? We transcribe but what we read in the great volume 
of Nature ; and, as the characters grow dim, we turn off, 
and look another way. You yourself write no Christ- 
abels, nor Ancient Mariners, now. 

Some of the Sonnets, which shall be carelessly turned 
over by the general reader, may happily awaken in you 
remembrances which I should be sorry should be ever 
totally extinct — the memory 

Of summer days and of delightful years — 

even so far back as to those old suppers at our old » » « 
****** Inn — when life was fresh, and topics ex- 
haustless, — and you first kindled in me, if not the power, 
yet the love of poetry, and beauty, and kindliness — 

What words have I heard 
Spoke at the Mermaid ? 

The world has given you many a shrewd nip and gird 
since that time, but either my eyes are grown dimmer, or 
my old friend is the same, who " stood before me three- 
and-twenty year" ago — his hair a little confessing the hand 
of time, but still shrouding the same capacious brain, — 
his heart not altered, scarcely where it " alteration finds." 

That is the true and permanent part of Lamb 
speaking to the true and permanent part of 
Coleridge. And from the fact that Lloyd is 
mentioned with kindness in this preface, and 
the inclusion of Lamb's early verses to him, 



we may imply that for him also Lamb's heart 
was again warm/ 

Lamb, in 1818, was not the only member 
of that company of three whose thoughts were 
travelling back to the old days. Charles 
Lloyd, who at that time, as we shall see, was 
just on the brink of a new period of poetic 
activity, was beginning his longest and incom- 

* Here it might be Interesting to quote a passage from a letter written 
by Charles Lloyd to Robert Lloyd some ten years earlier ; — 

"The more I think of the renewal of your intercourse with C. 
Lamb, the more I am pleased. I divide the quarrels which I may 
have chance to have had with those persons with whom I have been 
acquainted into two classes. The one consists of those quarrels where 
a mere want of sympathy on a given transaction has led to miscon- 
ception, to altercation, to passion, to separation j but where nothing 
has occurred to lower your opinion of the moral and intellectual worth 
of your friend,* of this character has been my refroidhsement with 
C. Lamb. Indeed, in this case the very excess of tenaciousness that 
led him to be offended with me has its foundation in a most exalted 
quality, disinterested, and almost unexampled attachment. The other 
class of quarrels embraces those which originate in the detection of 
meanness, duplicity, malevolence on the part of your former acquaint- 
ance, now converted into an adversary. These quarrels I never sur- 
mount — I may forgive the transactions that led to them, but I can 
never, ne-ver forget them." 

* To the word accompanied by an asterisk the note is: "Such a 
man is a generous foe whom I can esteem — there is even love in the 
quarrel !'* 

By way of postscript Charles Lloyd adds : " If you do write to 
Lamb, remember me to him and his sister." This was in 1809. 



parably best poem, " Desultory Thoughts in 
London," in which he paid tributes to both his 
old associates. It is at the present stage that 
quotations will most fitly come. This is Cole- 
ridge :— 

How shall I fitly speak on such a theme ? 

He is a treasure by the world neglected, 
Because he hath not with a prescience dim. 

Like those whose every aim is self-reflected, 
Pil'd up some fastuous trophy, that of him 

Might tell, what mighty powers the age rejected. 
But taught his lips the office of a pen — 
By fools he's deem'd a being lost to men. 

No ! with magnanimous self-sacrifice. 

And lofty inadvertency of fame. 
He felt there is a bliss in being wise. 

Quite independent of the wise man's name. 
Who now can say how many a soul may rise 

To a nobility of moral aim 
It ne'er had known, but for that spirit brave. 
Which, being freely gifted, freely gave ? 

Sometimes I think that I'm a blossom blighted ; 

But this I ken, that should it not prove so. 
If I am not inexorably spited 

Of all that dignifies mankind below j 
By him I speak of, I was so excited. 

While reason's scale was poising to and fro, 
6 8i 


"To the better cause;" that him I have to bless 
For that which it is comfort to possess. 

No ! Those who most have seen me, since the hour 
When thou and I, in former happier days, 

Frank converse held, though many an adverse power 
Have sought the memory of those times to raze. 

Can vouch that more it stirs me (thus a tower. 
Sole remnant of vast castle, still betrays 

Haply its former splendour) to have prov'd 

Thy love, than by fresh friends to have been lov'd. 

And this is Lamb : — 

Oft when steals on the meditative hour. 
And parlour twilight to repose invites; 

Oft when Imagination's stirring power 

Keeps watch with hollow blasts of winter nights ; 

Thy countenance bright upon his heart doth shower. 
By Memory trac'd, the exquisite delights. 

Which from thy smile, and from thy every tone. 

And intercourse ennobling, he has known. 

It is a dainty banquet, known to few. 

To thy mind's inner shrine to have access ; 

While choicest stores of intellect endue 
That sanctuary, in marvellous excess. 

There lambent glories, ever bright and new. 
Those, privileged to be its inmates, bless ! 

Such as by gods, in tributary rite. 

Were hail'd from earth, e'en on their thrones of light ! 



But stop ! — 'tis vain ! — For none will comprehend 
Though line on line dilate upon the theme : 

He simply wishes to assure his friend. 

How that his image (like a morning beam. 

Dear to the eye, especially if end 

It bring to wicked and portentous dream) 

In transient intercourse, and seldom given. 

Is bless'd to him as visitant from Heaven. 

(Allsop, by the way, in his reminiscences of 
Coleridge, quotes the following lines on Lamb, 
which he ascribes to Lloyd : — 

The child of impulse ever to appear. 

And yet through duty's path strictly to steer ! 

Oh, Lamb, thou art a mystery to me ! 

Thou art so prudent, and so mad with wildness. 

Thou art a source of everlasting glee ! 

Yet desolation of the very childless 

Has been thy lot ! Never in one like thee 

Did I see worth majestic from its mildness ; 

So far in thee from being an annoyance 

E'en to the vicious 'tis a source of joyance.) 

One more extract, to prove the completeness 

of the reconciliation of Coleridge and Lamb. 

In his own copy of his " Poetical Works," 

1834, Coleridge wrote in pencil, on his death- 



bed, against the poem " This Hme-tree bower 
my prison," the words : — " Ch. and Mary Lamb 
— dear to my heart, yea, as it were, my heart. — 
S.T.C. yEt.62,. 1834. 1797-1834=37 j^^rj/" 


"the anti- jacobin 


To return to 1798, from which, for the sake 
of sentimental symmetry, we have strayed some 
distance, it happened, by a freak of irony, that 
while in private life Coleridge and Lamb and 
Coleridge and Lloyd had drifted apart, they 
were placed under the public accusation of 
being bound together not only in firm union, 
but in a union inimical to society. In the 
satirical poem entitled " The New Morality," 
the last brilliant star discharged roman-candle 
like by The Anti-Jacobin, the Bristol Panti- 
socratists and their comrades in poetry were 
thus grouped :- 

And ye five other wandering Bards that move 
In sweet accord of harmony and love, 

C dge and S — th — y, L — d, and L — be and Co. 

Tune all your mystic harps to praise Lepaux ! 

That was in the number of July 9, 1798. 
The Anti-Jacobin then disappeared in favour 


of The Anti-Jacobin Review and Magazine^ the 
first number of which — published on August 
1 — was enriched by a coloured cartoon by 
Gillray, wherein the particular passage of " The 
New Morality" which described the worship 
of Lepaux received the emphasis of coloured 
illustration. In this picture, which is a fair 
specimen of Gillray's bludgeon-pencil, a crowd 
of the more prominent English revolutionists 
press forward to worship Justice, Philanthropy, 
and Sensibility. Chief of them is the Duke 
of Bedford as Leviathan. Among the others 
is Colridge (the spelling is Gillray's) in the 
guise of a donkey, offering a volume of 
" Dactylics," and Southey, as another donkey, 
flourishing a volume of " Saphics." In South- 
ey's pocket is a copy of " Joan of Arc." 
Behind, seated side by side, poring over a 
manuscript entitled " Blank Verse, by Toad 
and Frog," are a toad and frog. These are 
marked in the key plan Lloyd and Lamb.* 

» It is told that not long after the appearance of Gillray's picture, 
Lamb met Godwin for the first time. Lamb was in uproarious spirits, 
and in spite of the extreme infancy of their acquaintance persisted in 
chaffing the philosopher. Godwin at last was roused to put the mis- 
chievous question: "Pray, Mr. Lamb, are you toad or frog?" An 



No attempt to depict the portrait of any of 
the four was made by the artist. 

Coleridge and Southey may have been fair 
game for the satirist, but Lamb and Lloyd cer- 
tainly were not. Coleridge and Southey had 
collaborated in " The Fall of Robespierre" 
(1794). Coleridge also had lectured at Bristol 
in 1795 on political questions, and had criticised 
Pitt with some severity ; and these lectures, on 
being published under the titles " Conciones ad 
Populum" and " The Plot Discovered," had an 
addition by Southey. Coleridge also was a 
contributor to the Morning Post, and the friend 
of Citizen Thelwall, who, when he visited 
Stowey, was watched by a spy sent thither for 
the purpose by the Government. Lloyd, save 
for an inoperative sympathy with universal 
brotherhood, was, however, quite harmless ; 
while Lamb, who detested the whole business, 
was practically on the other side. However, a 
man is judged by the company he keeps. 

That Coleridge was singularly distasteful to 
the Anti-Jacobin mind is proved by a note ap- 

outburst of temper from Lamb was feared, but instead, the joke 
helped forward the friendship of the two men. 


pended to " The New Morality," when it was 
reprinted in the following year in " The Beau- 
ties of The Anti-Jacobin.'" It ran thus : — 

" Some of these youths were sadly corrupted 
in the metropolis, and initiated in the mys- 
teries of Theophilanthropism, when scholars 
at that excellent seminary, Christ's Hospital. 

C dge was nominated to an Exhibition at 

Cambridge, and the Vice-Master (soon after his 
admission) sent to him, on account of his non- 
attendance at chapel. This illuminated gentle- 
man affected astonishment that any criminality 
could attach to him for his non-performance 
of religious worship, the trickery of Priestcraft, 
but if his presence was required, pro forma, as 
at a muster-roll, he had no great objection to 
attend. To the disgrace of discipline, and a 
Christian University, this avowed Deist was not 
expelled for such sin. His equalising spirit 
and eccentricities have reduced this poetaster 
occasionally to such difficulties, that almost in 
want of bread he once addressed a soldier in 
the Park — ' Are you one of the cutthroats of the 
despot ?' The man was at first astonished, but 
he soon found that his distress had determined 
him to enlist. His friends have frequently 



extricated him from this and other embarrass- 
ments. He has since married, had children, 
and has now quitted the country, become a 
citizen of the world, left his little ones father- 
less, and his wife destitute. Ex uno disce his 
associates Southey and Lambe." Poor New 
Moralists ! — never were men robbed of their 
characters more lightheartedly or with less 
justification. " Lambe" must indeed have been 
startled by the indictment. Southey, in writing 
to his friend Wynn on the subject, in August, 
1 798, said : — " I know not what poor Lamb 
has done to be croaking there ; and what I 
think the worst part of The Anti-Jacobin is the 
lumping together men of such opposite prin- 
ciples ; this was stupid. We should have all 
been welcoming the Director^ not the Theophil- 
anthrope [Lepaux]." 

Lloyd, in a companion foot-note, was thus 
not unkindly explained : — " Mr. Lloyd was 
originally of that fraternity which delights in 
* Meetings for Sufferings.' He is descended 
from an opulent banker, and connected with 
the first families oi friends. Like his relation 
at Norwich, he has adopted the original prin- 
ciples of George Fox, the founder, relative to 



Priests and Kings. Mr. Gurney was excluded 
the Society for irregularities, but when a can- 
didate to represent his native city in Parliament 
was readmitted into the bond of unity against 
all constituted authorities. Mr. Lloyd con- 
tinues estranged from the ' Thou's and Thee's' 
(the language of ^ercorant, a quondam Chair- 
man at Versailles, and late President of the 
Commune of Paris — vide ' Clery's Journal,' p. 
173), for he has not hypocrisy sufficient for the 

Lloyd took the caricature and the verses 
with his customary seriousness, going so far as 
to indite a " Letter to the Anti-Jacobin Re- 
viewers," which was printed in Birmingham in 
1799. Therein he defended Lamb with some 
vigour : " The person you have thus leagued 
in a partnership of infamy with me is Mr. 
Charles Lamb, a man who, so far from being a 
democrat, would be the first person to assent to 
the opinions contained in the foregoing pages : 
he is a man too much occupied with real and 
painful duties — duties of high personal self- 
denial — to trouble himself about speculative 

Lepaux himself, of whom it is quite probable 


that Lamb and Lloyd had never heard, and 
Coleridge and Southey never thought, except 
with amusement, was a member of the Direc- 
tory, and the leader of a sect of Deists who, 
under the name of the Theophilanthropists, or 
lovers of God and man, came into being to 
supply France with some form of natural 
religion in place of total spiritual anarchy. 
The Theophilanthropists, although opposed to 
Christianity, believed in the existence of God 
and in the immortality of the soul. During 
their services there was a short pause, in which 
the congregation might meditate in silence on 
their conduct since the last meeting. The fol- 
lowing sentences, which, if strictly observed, 
could lead no one into trouble, were displayed 
conspicuously in the place of meeting : — 

Adore God, cherish your fellow creatures, render your- 
selves useful to your country. 

Good is whatever tends to preserve man or to per- 
fectionate him. 

Evil is whatever tends to destroy him or to deteriorate 

Children, honour your father and mother, obey them 
with affection, solace their old age. Fathers and mothers, 
instruct your children. 



Wives, behold in your husbands the heads of your 

Husbands, love your vvrives, and render yourselves 
mutually happy. 

The four special holidays of the Theophilan- 
thropists were in honour of Socrates, St. Vin- 
cent de Paul, Jean Jacques Rousseau, and 
George Washington. 

Subsequently, in a piece entitled " The An- 
archists: an Ode" — an imitation of Collins's 
"Ode to the Passions" — which also appeared 
in The Anti-Jacobin Review and Magazine^ the 
luckless quartette were again castigated. Thus 
(the mighty dam being Anarchy) : — 

See ! faithful to their mighty dam, 
Coleridge, Southey, Lloyd, and Lamb, 
In splay-foot madrigals of love. 
Soft moaning like the widowed dove. 
Pour side by side their sympathetic notes. 
Of equal rights and civic feasts 
And tyrant Kings and knavish Priests. 
Swift through the land the tuneful mischief floats. 
And now to softer strains they struck the lyre. 
They sung the beetle, or the mole. 
The dying kid, or ass's foal. 
By cruel men permitted to expire. 


And there the Anti-Jacobin attack ended. 

Eleven years later, however, another satirist, 
the young and spirited author of " EngHsh 
Bards and Scotch Reviewers" (1809), again 
grouped them. This time not Lepaux, but 
Wordsworth, was the alleged object of their 
adoration : Wordsworth, 

Whose verse, of all but childish prattle void. 
Seems blessed harmony to Lamb and Lloyd. 

His Lordship added in an explanatory foot- 
note that "Messrs. Lamb and Lloyd" were 
"the most ignoble followers of Southey and 




I 798-1 799 

In the autumn of 1 798, almost immediately 
after Charles Lloyd had settled at Cambridge, 
began Lamb's correspondence with Robert 
Lloyd, by which our store of Lamb literature 
is enriched to the extent of some seventeen 
letters. Robert came third in the Lloyd 
family. He was born December 10, 1778, 
and thus was not quite twenty at the time of 
Lamb's first letter, which was addressed to him 
at Saffron Walden, in Essex, while he was serv- 
ing his time as apprentice. Lamb, as we sup- 
pose, had met Robert early in 1797, during 
Charles Lloyd's visit to town, and had liked 
him on sight, and their acquaintance probably 
was renewed at Birmingham in the summer of 


Not, however, until October of 1798 does 
Lamb seem to have written directly to his 



young friend. This first letter is undated, but 
in October of that year Mary Lamb had an 
attack which, says her brother, writing to 
Southey, "frightened me a good deal," and 
we may presume it is that attack to which 
Lamb here alludes. This is the letter : Lamb, 
at the time, was approaching his twenty-fourth 
birthday — 

My dear Robert, — I am a good deal occu- 
pied with a calamity near home, but not so 
much as to prevent my thinking about you 
with the warmest affection — you are among 
my very dearest friends. I know you will feel 
deeply when you hear that my poor sister is 
unwell again ; one of her old disorders, but I 
trust it will hold no longer than her former ill- 
nesses have done. Do not imagine, Robert, 
that I sink under this misfortune, I have been 
season'd to such events, and think I could bear 
anything tolerably well. My own health is 
left me, and my good spirits, and I have some 
duties to perform — these duties shall be my ob- 
ject. I wish, Robert, you could find an object. 
I know the painfulness of vacuity, all its achings 
and inexplicable longings. I wish to God I 



could recommend any plan to you. Stock 
your mind well with religious knowledge ; dis- 
cipline it to wait with patience for duties that 
may be your lot in life ; prepare yourself not 
to expect too much out of yourself; read and 
think. This is all commonplace advice, I know. 
I know, too, that it is easy to give advice which 
in like circumstances we might not follow our- 
selves. You must depend upon yourself — 
there will come a time when you will wonder 
you were not more content. I know you will 
excuse my saying any more. 

" Be assured of my kindest, warmest af- 

"C. Lamb." 

It is evident, both from this letter and one 
or two that follow, that Robert Lloyd was in 
an unhappy mental state. Though by temper- 
ament unfitted ever to be as seriously unsettled 
as Charles, he was dissatisfied both with his 
employment and with the restrictions imposed 
upon him by his parents. He seems to have 
chafed continually, and now and then openly 
to have revolted. A gentle, solicitous letter 

from his mother, belonging to this period, has 



the following quaint passage : — " I was griev'd 
to hear of thy appearing in those fantastical 
trousers in London. I am clear such excen- 
tricities of dress would only make thee laugh 'd 
at by the World, whilst thy sincere Friends 
would be deeply hurt. Canst thou love thy 
Father and yet do things that sink him as well 
as thyself in the opinion of our best Friends ! 
Thou art, my dear Son, form'd to make an 
amiable Figure in Society, but for once trust 
to the judgment of thy Mother, neither thy 
Person or Mind are form'd for excentricities of 
dress or conduct." And Robert's father was 
also moved to write on the subject, but with 
fewer particulars : " Thou wilt please me by 
observing simplicity in thy dress and manners. 
Do not let the customs of the world influence 
thee." Robert, however, was young, and at a 
certain age it is natural to suspect the counsel 
of all but contemporaries. Not for his parents 
but for Lamb did his confidences ripen. 

From the tone of Lamb's next letter we 
may suppose that Robert Lloyd's reply to the 
earlier one had been not only unduly adulatory, 
but a very cry from the depths for sympathy 
and appreciation. It was in the nature both 

7 97 


of his brother Charles and himself to be hero- 
worshippers, and his new friend's kindly interest 
may naturally have prompted him to a burst 
of that deprecatory self-revelation to which 
sensitive youths of warm affections are prone, 
coupled with an appeal to Lamb to supply the 
part of mentor. Lamb replied with grave de- 
liberation : — 

" My dear Robert, — Mary is better, and I 
trust that she will yet be restored to me. I am 
in good spirits, so do not be anxious about me. 
I hope you get reconciled to your situation. 
The worst in it is that you have no friend to 
talk to — but wait in patience, and you will in 
good time make friends. The having a friend 
is not indispensably necessary to virtue or 
happiness. Religion removes those barriers of 
sentiment which partition us from the dis- 
interested love of our brethren — we are com- 
manded to love our enemies, to do good to 
those that hate us ; how much more is it our 
duty then to cultivate a forbearance and com- 
placence towards those who only differ from us 
in dispositions and ways of thinking. There 
is always, without very unusual care there must 



always be, something of Self in friendship ; we 
love our friend because he is like ourselves ; 
can consequences altogether unmix'd and pure 
be reasonably expected from such a source — 
do not even the publicans and sinners the 
same? Say, that you love a friend for his 
moral qualities, is it not rather because those 
qualities resemble what you fancy your own ? 
This, then, is not without danger. The only 
true cement of a valuable friendship, the only 
thing that even makes it not sinful, is when two 
friends propose to become mutually of benefit 
to each other in a moral or religious way. But 
even this friendship is perpetually liable to 
the mixture of something not pure ; we love 
our friend, because he is ours — so we do our 
money, our wit, our knowledge, our virtue ; 
and wherever this sense of appropriation and 
PROPERTY enters, so much is to be subtracted 
from the value of that friendship or that virtue. 
Our duties are to do good, expecting nothing 
again ; to bear with contrary dispositions ; to 
be candid and forgiving, not to crave and long 
after a communication of sentiment and feel- 
ing, but rather to avoid dwelling upon those 
feelings, however good, because they are our 



own. A man may be intemperate and selfish 
who indulges in good feelings for the mere 
pleasure they give him. I do not wish to deter 
you from making a friend, a true friend, and 
such a friendship, where the parties are not 
blind to each other's faults, is very useful and 
valuable. I perceive a tendency in you to this 
error, Robert. I know you have chosen to 
take up an high opinion of my moral worth, 
but I say it before God, and I do not lie, you 
are mistaken in me. I could not bear to lay 
open all my failings to you, for the sentiment 
of shame would be too pungent. Let this be 
as an example to you. Robert, friends fall off, 
friends mistake us, they change, they grow un- 
like us, they go away, they die ; but God is 
everlasting and incapable of change, and to Him 
we may look with cheerful, unpresumptous 
hope, while we discharge the duties of life in 
situations more untowardly than yours. You 
complain of the impossibility of improving 
yourself, but be assured that the opportunity 
of improvement lies more in the mind than the 
situation. Humble yourself before God, cast 
out the selfish principle, wait in patience, do 
good in every way you can to all sorts of 


people, never be easy to neglect a duty tho' a 
small one, praise God for all, and see His hand 
in all things, and He will in time raise you up 
many friends — or be Himself instead an un- 
changing friend. God bless you. 

" C. Lamb." 

Here we see Charles Lamb in a new and 
beautiful character. That he was ready to be 
kind and helpful on occasion we have proof 
enough ; but there is no letter among all those 
already published that shows him in the light 
of the patient, understanding counsellor of a 
young man in spiritual difficulties. What was 
the condition of Lamb's own mind at that 
time cannot clearly be stated. There are, in 
his correspondence with matured men, signs 
that it was unsettled, but he was able with un- 
paralleled clarity and reasonableness to advise 
a younger and less-experienced acquaintance. 
Leaving aside the matter of this letter, it must 
have been no small thing to Lamb to turn from 
his literary hobbies, social duties and pleasures, 
to write at such length to a youth as markedly- 
unformed and intellectually-backward as Robert 



The boy had, however, a very winning way. 
He was, we may consider, impetuous, frank, 
affectionate, intolerant of even the semblance 
of deception, and impatient of all checks upon 
emotion. His mind was less serious and con- 
templative than that of his brother Charles, 
but not less eager for the light by which a man 
should live. We have seen that Charles was 
averse from laughter, but one can fancy Robert 
laughing often and with zest. 

It is hardly to be wondered at that a young 
man thus equipped should find the strict prac- 
tices of the Quakers distasteful ; and on leav- 
ing Saffron Walden, which he did at this time, 
and returning to home life at Birmingham, 
Robert came into active conflict with his family 
on the subject. He was indeed in a position 
of peculiar discomfort, for his temperament 
prevented him from accepting their creed, and 
his honesty disabled him from affecting to do 
so. This is no place for an inquiry into that 
creed ; it is here enough to say that the peace- 
able professions of the Society of Friends are 
less compatible with youth than with age ; and 
Robert Lloyd was twenty. His especial dis- 
like seems to have been the silent meetings. 


grave and inactive, with no ritual for the or- 
ganisation of wandering thoughts, no music to 
allure the soul from a mundane environment. 
To Lamb he poured out his objections, and 
received in reply this solemn and touching 
appeal : — 

" My dear Robert, — I acknowledge I have 
been sadly remiss of late. If I descend to any 
excuse (and all excuses that come short of a 
direct denial of a charge are poor creatures at 
best), it must be taken from my state of mind 
for some time past, which has been stupid 
rather, and unfilled with any object, than occu- 
pied, as you may imagine, with any favourite 
idea to the exclusion of friend Robert. You, 
who are subject to all the varieties of the mind, 
will give me credit in this. 

" I am sadly sorry that you are relapsing into 
your old complaining strain. I wish I could 
adapt my consolations to your disease, but, 
alas ! I have none to offer which your own 
mind, and the suggestions of books, cannot 
better supply. Are you the first whose situa- 
tion hath not been exactly squar'd to his ideas ? 

or rather, will you find me that man who does 


not complain of the one thing wanting ? That 
thing obtained, another wish will start up. 
While this eternal craving of the mind keeps 
up its eternal hunger, no feast that my palate 
knows of will satisfy that hunger till we come 
to drink the new wine (whatever it be) in the 
Kingdom of the Father. See what trifles dis- 
quiet us. — You are Unhappy because your 
Parents expect you to attend meetings. I 
don't know much of Quakers' meetings, but I 
believe I may moderately reckon them to take 
up the space of six hours in the week. Six 
hours to please your parents — and that time 
not absolutely lost. Your mind remains, you 
may think, and plan, remember, and foresee, 
and do all human acts of mind sitting as well 
as walking. You are quiet at meeting : one 
likes to be so sometimes ; you may advantage- 
ously crowd your day's devotions into that 
space. Nothing you see or hear there can be 
unfavourable to it — you are for that time at 
least exempt from the counting-house, and your 
parents cannot chide you there ; surely at so 
small expense you cannot grudge to observe 
the Fifth Commandment. I decidedly con- 
sider your refusal as a breach of that God- 


descended precept — Honour and observe thy 
parents in all lawful things. Silent worship 
cannot be C/«lawful ; there is no Idolatry, no 
invocation of saints, no bowing before the con- 
secrated wafer in all this, nothing which a wise 
man would refuse, or a good man fear to do. 
What is it? Sitting a few hours in a week 
with certain good people who call that worship. 
You subscribe to no articles — if your mind 
wanders, it is no crime in you who do not give 
credit to these infusions of the spirit. They 
sit in a temple, you sit as in a room adjoining, 
only do not disturb their pious work with gab- 
bling, nor your own necessary peace with heart- 
burnings at your not ill-meaning parents, nor a 
silly contempt of the work which is going on 
before you, I know that if my parents were 
to live again, I would do more things to please 
them than merely sitting still six hours in a 
week. Perhaps I enlarge too much on this 
affair, but indeed your objection seems to me 
ridiculous, and involving in it a principle of 
frivolous and vexatious resistance. 

" You have often borne with my freedoms, 
bear with me once more in this. If I did not 

love you, I should not trouble myself whether 


you went to meeting or not — whether you con- 
form'd or not [to] the will of your father. 

" I am now called off to dinner before one 
o'clock ; being a holyday we dine early, for 
Mary and me to have a long walk afterwards. 
My kindest remembrance to Charles.^ 

" God give him all joy and quiet. 

" Mary sends her LOVE. 

" C. L." 

Lamb's next communication to Robert — the 
first to bear a date — seems to have been added 
as a postscript to a letter to another member 
of the family at Birmingham, probably Charles, 
at home on a visit. And with it we come at 
length to something more in the true manner 
of the nimble, playful wit and deep-seeing critic 
who is known to the world as Elia. Only 

' The message to Charles reminds us that Lamb was occasionally 
seeing and hearing from his old associate. To Southey he wrote in 
October: "I have had a letter from Lloyd. The young meta- 
physician of Caius is well, and is busy recanting the new heresy, 
metaphysics, for the old dogma, Greek." And again, in November : 
" I am going to meet Lloyd at Ware on Saturday, to return on 
Sunday. Have you any commands or commendations to the meta- 
physician ?" 



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Elia could have written this spirited paean of 
the joy of living. 

" Now 'tis Robert's turn. 

" My dear Robert, — One passage in your 
Letter a little displeas'd me. The rest was 
nothing but kindness, which Robert's letters are 
ever brimful of You say that ' this World to 
you seems drain'd of all its sweets I' At first 
I had hoped you only meant to insinuate the 
high price of Sugar ! but I am afraid you meant 
more. O Robert, I don't know what you call 
sweet. Honey and the honeycomb, roses and 
violets, are yet in the earth. The sun and 
moon yet reign in Heaven, and the lesser lights 
keep up their pretty twinklings. Meats and 
drinks, sweet sights and sweet smells, a country 
walk, spring and autumn, follies and repentance, 
quarrels and reconcilements, have all a sweet- 
ness by turns. Good humour and good nature, 
friends at home that love you, and friends 
abroad that miss you, you possess all these 
things, and more innumerable, and these are all 
sweet things. . . . You may extract honey 
from everything ; do not go a gathering after 

gall. The Bees are wiser in their generation 


than the race of sonnet writers and complainers, 
Bowles's and Charlotte Smiths, and all that 
tribe, who can see no joys but what are past, 
and fill people's heads with notions of the un- 
satisfying nature of Earthly comforts. I assure 
you I find this world a very pretty place. My 
kind love to all your Sisters and to Thomas — 
he never writes to me — and tell Susanna I 
forgive her. 

" C. Lamb. 

"London, the 13th November, 1798.** 

The concluding message suggests that Lamb 
was on a footing of some intimacy with others 
of the Lloyd family. Thomas was Robert's 
younger brother, the next to him in age ; 
Susanna was probably Susanna Whitehead, 
whom Thomas afterwards married. 

A week later Lamb hints at a letter which 
apparently has been lost, and sends the first 
draft of his dramatic fragment, " The Witch." 
The letter is undated, but the postmark gives 
November 20, 1798: — 

" As the little copy of verses I sent gave 
Priscilla and Robert some pleasure, I now send 

them another little tale, which is all I can send, 



for my stock will be exhausted. . . . 'Tis a 
tale of witchcraft, told by an old Steward in 
the family to Margaret, the ward of Sir Walter 
Woodvil. fVho Sir Walter is you may come 
to know bye and bye, when I have finished a 
Poem, from which this and the other are ex- 
tracts, and all the extracts I can make without 
mutilating : — 

Old Steward. One summer night Sir Walter, as it 
Was pacing to and fro in the avenue 
That westward fronts our house. 
Among those aged oaks said to have been planted 
Three hundred years ago 

By a neighb'ring Prior of the Woodvil name ; 
But so it was. 

Being o'er task'd in thought he heeded not 
The importune suit of one who stood by the gate. 
And begg'd an alms. 

Some say, he shov'd her rudely from the gate 
With angry chiding ; but I can never think, 
(Sir Walter's nature hath a sweetness in it,) 
That he could treat a woman, an old woman. 
With such discourtesy. 

For old she was who begg'd an alms of him. 
Well, he refus'd her. 
(Whether for importunity I know not. 
Or that she came between his meditations,) 
But better had he met a Lion in the Streets, 


Than this old woman that night. 

For she was one who practis'd the black arts. 

And serv'd the Devil, being since burnt for witchcraft. 

She look'd at him like one that meant to blast him 

And with a frightful noise, 

('Twas partly like a woman's voice. 

And partly like the hissing of a snake,) 

She nothing spake but this : Sir Walter told the words. 

" A mischief, mischief, mischief 

And a nine times killing curse, 
By day and by night, to the caitive wight, 
Who shakes the poor, like snakes, from his door. 

And shuts up the womb of his purse : 

And a mischief, mischief, mischief, 

And a ninefold with'ring curse — 
For that shall come to thee that will undo thee. 

Both all that thou fear'st and worst." 

These words four times repeated, she departed 
Leaving Sir Walter like a man, beneath 
Whose feet a scaffolding had suddenly fall'n. 

Margaret. A terrible curse I 

0/J Steward. O Lady I such bad things are said of that 
old woman. 
You would be loth to hear them ! 
As, namely, that the milk she gave was sour. 
And the babe, who suck'd her, shrivell'd like a mandrake' 

' ** A mandrake is a root resembling the human form, as sometimes 
a carrot does, and the old superstition is, that when the mandrake is 
torn out of the earth a dreadful shriek is heard, which makes all who 
hear it go mad. 'Tis a fatal poison besides." 



And things besides, with a bigger horror in them. 
Almost, I think, unlawful to be told ! 

Margaret. Then I must never hear them. But pro- 
And say what follow'd on the witch's curse. 

Old Steward. Nothing immediate ; but some nine months 
Young Stephen Woodvil suddenly fell sick. 
And none could tell what ail'd him ; for he lay. 
And pin'd, and pin'd, till all his hair came off. 
And he, that was full flesh'd, became as thin 
As a two months' babe that has been starv'd in the 

And sure, I think. 

He bore his illness like a little child. 
With such rare sweetness, and dumb melancholy. 
He strove to clothe his agony in smiles. 
Which he would force up in his poor pale cheeks. 
Like ill-tim'd guests that had no proper dwelling 

And, when they ask'd him his complaint, he laid 
His hand upon his heart to show the place 
Where Susan came to him a nights, he said. 
And prick'd him with a pin. 
And thereupon Sir Walter call'd to mind 
The beggar witch who stood in the gatewayi 
And begg'd an alms. 

Margaret. And so he died? 

Old Steward. *Tis thought so. 

Margaret. But did the witch confess ? 

Old Steward, All this and more at her death. 


Margaret. I do not love to credit tales of magic. 
Heav'n's music, which is order, seems unstrung. 
And this brave world. 

Creation's beauteous workmanship, unbeautify'd, 
Disorder'd, marr'd, where such strange things are 

" I will here conclude my tiny portion of 
Prose with hoping you may like the story, and 
my kind remembrances to all. 

"C. Lamb. 

" Write soon, Robert." 

Lamb afterwards changed his mind about 
this passage, which was not incorporated in 
"John Woodvil," but stands alone in his 
works, an independence emphasised by the al- 
teration of the name of Woodvil to Fairford. 
A comparison of the poem as it stands, with 
its form as Robert and Priscilla Lloyd first 
knew it, illustrates the nicety of its author's 
artistic conscience.^ 

• To Southey Lamb wrote more than once on the subject of " The 
Witch." His letter of November, 1798 ("Letters," i. p. 97) makes 
it clear that Charles Lloyd's opinion also was asked. Thus : " Lloyd 
objects to ' shutting up the womb of his purse,' in my curse (which, 
for a christian witch in a Christian country, is not too mild, I hope). 
Do you object ? I think there is a strangeness in the idea, as well as 


And here a word as to Robert's sister Priscilla. 
Priscilla Lloyd, Mr. Lloyd's sixth child, was at 
this time — the autumn of 1 798 — -just seventeen. 
Her future husband, Christopher Wordsworth, 
the brother of the poet, — who was introduced 
to the family by Charles Lloyd, his pupil at 
Cambridge, — thus describes her in a letter be- 
longing to the period : " My Priscilla is now 
a little more than seventeen, not under the mid- 
dle size of women, not slender, not handsome, 
but what at times you would, I think, call a 
fine woman." According to Charles she was 
like Mrs. Siddons. In due course we shall 
reach Priscilla's marriage ; but as this chapter 
has already touched upon Quaker revolt, it 
might here be remarked that subsequently she 
became the mother of Charles Wordsworth, 
Bishop of St. Andrews, and Christopher Words- 
worth, Bishop of Lincoln, and the grandmother 

* shaking the poor like snakes from his door,' which suits the 
speaker. Witches illustrate, as fine ladies do, from their own familiar 
objects, and snakes and the shutting-up of wombs are in their way. 
I don't know that this last charge has been before brought against 'em, 
nor either the sour milk or the mandrake babe; but I affirm these be 
things a witch would do if she could." The postscript to this letter 
is amusing : " When you write to Lloyd, he wishes his Jacobin corres- 
pondents to address him as Mr. C. L." 
8 H3 


of John Wordsworth, Bishop of Salisbury — 
no bad achievement for a Quaker's daughter. 

To 1798 belong no more letters, but early 
in the new year — on January 21,1 799 — Lamb, 
writing to Southey, spoke of a startling occur- 
rence, which was destined to bring Robert 
Lloyd nearer to him than any correspondence 
could : — " I am requested by [Charles] Lloyd 
to excuse his not replying to a kind letter re- 
ceived from you. He is at present situated in 
most distressful family perplexities, which I am 
not at liberty to explain, but they are such as 
to demand all the strength of his mind, and 
quite exclude any attention to foreign objects. 
His brother Robert (the flower of his family) 
hath eloped from the persecutions of his father, 
and has taken shelter with me. What the 
issue of his adventure will be I know not. He 
hath the sweetness of an angel in his heart, 
combined with admirable firmness of purpose, 
an uncultivated, but very original, and I think 
superior, genius." 

Precisely what Lamb meant by the word 

" persecutions," or whether he meant it at all, 

but wished merely to suggest Robert's own 

view of the matter, we shall never know. In 



those letters from Mr. Lloyd to his son which 
have been preserved there certainly is nothing 
to which the word could apply. This, for 
example, is a fair specimen of the paternal 
reasoning : — " I am sometimes concerned to 
hear that thou givest way to uncomfortable 
feelings and repinest at thy situation. Have a 
little patience, my dear Son, and thou wilt have 
reason to rejoice that thou passedst the days of 
thy youth in such a quiet, retired situation. 
' It is good for a man to bear the yoke in his 
youth,' and I am persuaded Charles and James 
would in many respects have received great 
advantages had they been apprenticed out in 
steady families." 

Yet the fact remains that Robert fled. It 
may, however, have been less because he 
found Birmingham unbearable than London 
irresistible. He went straight to the sympa- 
thetic Lamb, and with him or near him re- 
mained for some months. Writing on May 
20, Lamb gave Southey a further account of 
the embroilment and his own mischievous 
pleasure therein : — " Lloyd will now be able to 
give you an account of himself, so to him I 
leave you for satisfaction. Great part of his 


troubles are lightened by the partial recovery 
of his sister, who had been alarmingly ill with 
similar diseases to his own. The other part of 
the family troubles sleeps for the present, but I 
fear will awake at some future time to con- 
found and disunite. He will probably tell you 
all about it. Robert still continues here with 
me ; his father has proposed nothing, but would 
willingly lure him back with fair professions. 
But Robert is endowed with a wise fortitude, 
and in this business has acted quite from him- 
self, and wisely acted. His parents must come 
forward in the end. I like reducing parents to 
a sense of undutifulness. I like confounding 
the relations of life." ' 

What happened at Birmingham after Robert's 
elopement, or what he did in London, or how 
Lamb extricated himself — as assuredly he did — 
from such an embarrassing position as aider and 
abettor of an unfilial rebel, is not known. 

After Lamb's reports to Southey our next 
glimpse of Robert is in a letter from Priscilla 
in June of the same year, in which he is ad- 

* From a letter (printed in full in Mr. W. C. Hazlitt's work, 
" The Lambs"), a portion only of wliich is used by Canon Ainger^ 
in Lamb's "Letters." 



dressed at Bath. His sister entered with gentle 
reasonableness into his difficulties, sympathising 
with his objections to business and suggesting 
possible solutions. She wrote : " Lamb would 
not I think by any means be a person to take 
up your abode with. He is too much like 
yourself — he would encourage those feelings 
which it certainly is your duty to suppress. 
Your station in life — the duties which are 
pointed out by that rank in society which 
you are destined to fulfil — differ widely from 
his. . . . Charles," Priscilla added, "wishes 
you to call on Southey at Bristol frequently." 



1 799-1 800 

On returning to Birmingham, the storm 
having subsided, Robert found a new friend. 
This was Thomas Manning, destined after- 
wards to inspire some of Lamb's best letters, 
and therefore some of the best letters in the 
world, who was then spending a portion of the 
long vacation with Charles Lloyd, one of his 
mathematical pupils at Caius. Manning, at 
that time a man of twenty-seven, was attracted 
to Robert Lloyd much as Lamb had been, and 
from a little bundle of eight letters ' written to 
him by Robert Lloyd in the autumn of 1 799 
and spring of 1800, we may conclude that 
Robert found in him the ideal confidant for 
whom he had been seeking. He seems just 
then to have needed a friend more poignantly 

' Now in the possession of Canon Manning, with whose kind per- 
mission quotations are made here. 



than at any period of his life, and Manning 
gave him true help. These letters, which it is 
not profitable to quote entire, are filled with 
gratitude to a wise and kindly counsellor. " To 
you,'* Robert says in one, " I fear to tell noth- 
ing. Lamb is a different cast, he understands 
not the complex winding of character, so that 
I keep from him what if I told would give him 
notions that he could never make meet [word 
partly illegible]." 

In September Robert visited his uncle, Ne- 
hemiah Lloyd, at Worcester, and soon after- 
wards came the following incomplete letter 
from Lamb : — 

" My dear Robert, — I suppose by this time 
you have returned from Worcester with Uncle 
Nehemiah. You neglected to inform me 
whether Charles is yet at Birm. I have heard 
here that he is returned to Cambridge. Give 
him a gentle tap on the shoulder to remind 
him how truly acceptable a letter from him 
would be. I have nothing to write about. 

" Thomson remains with me. He is per- 
petually getting into mental vagaries. He is 
in LOVE I and tosses and tumbles about in his 



bed like a man in a barrel of spikes. He is 
more sociable, but I am heartily sick of his 
domesticating with me ; he wants so many 
sympathies of mine, and I want his, that we 
are daily declining into civility. I shall be truly 
glad when he is gone. I find 'tis a dangerous 
experiment to grow too familiar. Some natures 
cannot bear it without converting into indiffer- 
ence. I know but one Being that I could ever 
consent to live perpetually with, and that is 
Robert. But Robert must go whither prudence 
and paternal regulations indicate a way. I shall 
not soon forget you — do not fear that — nor 
grow cool towards Robert. My not writing is 
no proof of these disloyalties. Perhaps I am 
unwell, or vexed, or spleen'd, or something, 
when I should otherwise write. 

" Assure Charles of my unalterable affection, 
and present my warmest wishes for his and 
Sophia's happiness. How goes on Priscilla? 
I am much pleased with his Poems in the 
Anthology — One in Particular. The other is 
a kind and no doubt just tribute to Robert and 
Olivia, but I incline to opinion that these do- 
mestic addresses should not always be made 
public. I have, I know, more than once ex- 


posed my own secretest feelings of that nature, 
but I am sorry that I did. Nine out of ten 
readers laugh at them. When a man dies leav- 
ing the name of a great author behind him, 
any unpublished relicks which let one into his 
domestic retirements are greedily gathered up, 
which in his lifetime, and before his fame had 
ripened, would by many be considered as im- 
pertinent. But if Robert and his sister were 
gratify'd with seeing their brother's heart in 
Print, let the rest of the world go hang. They 
may prefer the remaining trumpery of the 
Anthology. All I mean to say is, I think I 
perceive an indelicacy in thus exposing one's 
virtuous feelings to criticism. But of delicacy 
Charles is at least as true a judge as myself 

" Pray request him to let me somehow have 
a sight of his novel. I declined offering it here 
for sale, for good reasons as I thought — being 
unknown to Booksellers, and not made for 
making bargains ; but for that reason I am not 
to be punished with not seeing the book. 

" I shall count it a kindness if Chas. will 
send me the manuscript, which shall certainly 
be returned. [The remainder of this letter has 
been torn off.] " 



The Thomson referred to was a Cambridge 
curate. The allusion to Charles Lloyd a little 
later is our first intimation of his intended mar- 
riage. Sophia was Sophia Pemberton, of Bir- 
mingham, to whom he was united very shortly 
after Lamb's congratulations. According to 
De Quincey, Miss Pemberton's parents were so 
averse from the match that Lloyd secured the 
assistance of Southey to carry her off. That, 
however, probably was not so. One cannot 
quite see Southey thus engaged. Although 
married, Charles Lloyd did not leave Cambridge 
for some months. 

To return to Lamb's letter, the Anthology 
was the " Annual Anthology" which Southey 
had been busily preparing for Cottle during the 
preceding year. As a matter of fact, Charles 
Lloyd was represented by four contributions : 
the " Lines to a Brother and Sister" (Robert 
and Olivia), to which Lamb took exception ; 
some blank verse " To a Young Man who con- 
sidered the perfection of human nature as 
consisting in the vigour and indulgence of the 
more boisterous passions," and sonnets to a 
Woodpecker and the Sabbath. Lamb's inter- 
esting comments upon taste, which are as per- 



tinent to-day as they were when written, form 
the first piece of literary criticism in his letters 
to Robert Lloyd. Charles Lloyd's novel, to 
which Lamb refers, was " Edmund Oliver," 
published in 1798, more than a year before. 
Considering that that ill-starred work was dedi- 
cated to him, it is particularly odd that Lamb 
should not have yet seen a copy. But in its 
author's hypersensitiveness the reason is prob- 
ably to be sought. 

Lamb and Manning first met late in 1799, 
during a visit paid by Lamb to Charles Lloyd. 
In all likelihood the time was early December. 
Indeed, a letter from Mr. Lloyd to his sons 
Robert and Thomas, written in London on the 
fifth of that month, has a passage — " I took 
Priscilla and Rachel to the India House, but 
C. Lamb was gone to Cambridge" — which, 
when taken into association with Lamb's first 
letter to Manning, dated December, may be 
said to settle the point. This bringing together 
of two such complementary natures as Lamb 
and Manning was Charles Lloyd's most con- 
spicuous achievement. Had he not done so, 
by how much good fun and good sense should 

we be the poorer ! — for Lamb was never in 


better pin than in his letters to the mathe- 
matician-traveller. It was Manning who gave 
him the Chinese story on which the " Disser- 
tation on Roast Pig" pivots. " He is a man of 
a thousand," Lamb wrote to Coleridge a week 
after making this new friend, the reconciliation 
with Coleridge having been completed almost 
at the same time that Manning entered Lamb's 
life. Truly a notable December. 

In another of Mr. Lloyd's letters during his 
sojourn in town he wrote : " C. Lamb dined 
here a few days ago, and is to breakfast here 
on 5th day." Lamb's next letter to Robert 
gave some account of the banker's hospitality : — 

" Dear Rob, — Thy presents will be most ac- 
ceptable whenever they come, both for thy 
sake and for the liquor, which is a beverage I 
most admire. Wine makes me hot, and brandy 
makes me drunk, but porter warms without 
intoxication ; and elevates, yet not too much 
above the point of tranquillity. But I hope 
Robert will come himself before the tap is out. 
He may be assured that his good honest com- 
pany is the most valuable present, after all, he 

can make us. These cold nights crave some- 



thing beside Porter — good English mirth and 
heart's ease. Rob must contrive to pass some 
of his Christmas with us, or at least drink in 
the century with a welcome. 

" I have not seen your father or Priscilla 
since. Your father was in one of his best 
humours (I have seldom seen him in one not 
good), and after dinner, while we were sitting 
comfortably before the parlour fire, after our 
wine, he beckoned me suddenly out of the 
room. I, expecting some secrets, followed 
him, but it was only to go and sit with him in 
the old forsaken compting house, which he de- 
clared to be the pleasantest spot in the house 
to him, and told me how much business used 
to be done there in former days. Your father 
whimsically mixes the good man and the man 
of business in his manners, but he is not 
less a good man for being a man of business. 
He has conceived great hopes of thy one day 
uniting both characters, and I joyfully expect 
the same. 

" I hope to see Priscilla, for the first time, 

some day the end of this week, but think it at 

least dubious, as she stays in town but one day, 

I think your father said. 


" I wonder Rob could think I should take 
his presents in evil part. I am sure from him 
they are the genuine result of a sincere friend- 
ship, not immediately knowing how better to 
express itself I shall enjoy them with tenfold 
gust, as being his presents. At the same time, 
I must remind him that such expressions, if too 
thickly repeated, would be in danger of prov- 
ing oppressive. 

" I am not fond of presents all on one side, 
and Rob knows that I have little to present to 
him, except the assurances of an undiminished 
and an undiminishable friendship. Rob will 
take as a hint what his friend does not mean as 
an affront. I hope our friendship will stand 
firm, without the help of scaffolding. 

" At the same time I am determined to enjoy 
Robert's present, and to drink his health in his 
own porter, and I hope he will be able to par- 
take with us. Bread and cheese and a hearty 
sympathy may prove no bad supplement to 
Robert's good old English beverage. Charles 
has not written to me since I saw him. I trust 
he goes on as comfortably as I witness'd. No 
husband and wife can be happier than Sophia 

and your Brother appear to be in each other's 



company/ Robert must marry next ; I look 
to see him get the start of Wordsworth and 
Priscilla, whom yet I wish to see united. 
" Farewell, dearest Rob, 

" C. L. 

" Mary joins with me in remembrances to 
Robert, and in expectation of the coming bev- 

" Do you think you shall be able to come ? 

" Monday night, just Porter time. 

"December 17, 1799." 

The counting-house to which Lamb was 
taken by his host was David Barclay's, where 
Mr. Lloyd had learned banking as a youth. 

Robert does not seem to have been able to 
accept Lamb's invitation and fare to town ; but 
Manning did, and there, under Lamb's roof, 

• Lamb seems to have been much attracted by Sophia Lloyd. His 
letters to Manning at this time have several references to her. In one 
he sends the young couple his "dearest love and remembrances;" in 
another — March 17, 1800, he indulges in a little affectionate exagger- 
ation : " My dear love to Lloyd and Sophia, and pray split this thin 
letter into three parts, and present them with the fwo biggest in my 
name. They are my oldest friends ; but, ever the new friend driveth 
out the old, as the ballad sings. God bless you all three ! I would 
hear from Lloyd if I could." 



he met Coleridge. Writing to Manning in 
February, 1800, Robert said : " I find you have 
been in London. I doubt not but you spent 
your time very happily when at Lamb's. He 
sometimes, indeed often, writes to me. I prize 
his letters as I do yours, and I long to have 
more of yours to look at. I value them more 
than books, or any other writings — I quite 
nurse them up. Do write to me shortly, any- 
thing from you will prove abundantly accept- 
able." We may gather that Manning replied 
at once, although his letter is undated : — 

" Sunday. 

" My very dear Friend, — I have been too 
negligent of you. I ought to have written be- 
fore, yet for all that I shall stand excused 
before you. If I tell you that my negligence 
has not proceeded from any waning of love, or 
any unkind impressions, you will believe me. 
You'll acquit me of all the important part of 
the charge, and the rest your love will excuse 
and pardon — for you know me. I am proud, 
Robert, to be known and beloved by you. 

" There are men here, very good men, who 

do not rightly appreciate my mind and dispo- 


sition ; they see something reserv'd in me, and 
imagine me to be designing in some measure. 
I thought I had discovered an instance of it 
just before your letter came. I felt a little 
damp upon my spirits, and you cannot think 
how consoling were the assurances you give me 
of your love and esteem. As I could not bear 
to think of your being alienated from me, so 
the assurance (just at that time) of your being 
still my own, was reviving to my spirit. 

" I was indeed very happy at Lamb's ; I 
abode there but three days. He is very good. 
I wish you and He and myself were now sit- 
ting over a bowl of punch, or a tankard of 
porter. We often talked of You, and were 
perfectly agreed ; but I won't tell you what we 
agreed to about you, lest you should hold up 
your head too high. You'll be sufficiently vain, 
I doubt not, Master Robert, at having been 
made the subject of conversation between such 
great men as Lamb and / {are likely to be). I 
was introduced to Coleridge, which was a great 
gratification to me. I think him a man of very 
splendid abilities and animated feelings. But 
let me whisper a word in your ear, Robert, — 

twenty Coleridges could not supply your loss to 
9 129 


me, if you were to forsake me. So \{ 2X\y friendly 
interposer should come and tell you I am not 
what I seem, and warn you against my friend- 
ship, beware of listening to him. Let no sur- 
mises weigh against the decisions derived from 
our personal intercourse — but I have no fears, 
I write this with the levity of perfect confi- 
dence. It is a [kind of] boasting; you may 
truly set it down as one of the marks of my 
love and friendship. 

" Is there any chance of my seeing you here, 
Robert? I shall stay in Cambridge almost 
uninterruptedly till this time twelvemonth, per- 
haps longer ; and during that time I hope you'll 
be necessitated to visit this place. 

" Charles and Sophia (God bless them I) are 
both well ; they have not heard from Priscilla 
for a long time — say in your next how she 
does. Remember me very kindly to all your 

" Faiewell — write soon and believe me, 
" Your very affectionate Friend, 

" Thomas Manning." 

We may suppose, from Robert's reply, that 

this was just the type of encouraging letter of 


which he was in need. " Your kind letter," he 
wrote, " quite raised me from the ground. . . . 
I feel more attached to my family," he said 
later, " and" — here we see the fruit of Lamb's 
admonishings — " I fully intend going to the 
Quakers' meeting again. Not that my father 
has spoken to me of it, for he behaves in the 
most noble manner to me, but I can no longer 
withstand his affectionate solicitude without 
showing some free gift, something which will 
give him great pleasure and which is his right — 
my sitting two hours on a Sunday under the same 
roof in silence " One more quotation : " Every 
pleasure of my life is derived from my friends, 
and without them the most exquisite apparent 
delight would be fruitless and barren. They 
are like comfortable warm huts in a wilderness 
of misery, where the soul may rest from its 
toils and slumber in the dreams of serenity and 
freshening peace." Lamb, we now perceive, 
was shrewdly advised in telling Robert that he 
must be the next to marry. No young man 
was ever riper for love. 

Lamb's name crops up at the same time in 
a letter from Mrs. Lloyd to Robert, written in 
London, where she was staying with her second 


daughter, Olivia. The date is March i — that 
is to say, " Third Month" 1st — 1800, and Mrs. 
Lloyd, having a busy visiting season before 
her, remarks : " If C. Lamb pays his respects I 
wish it might be some morning at Breakfast. . . . 
I hardly think we shall have one vacant day." 
A fortnight later Lamb, writing to Manning, 
gave an account of his call : " Tell Charles I 
have seen his mamma, and have almost fallen 
in love with her^ since I mayn't with Olivia. 
She is so fine and graceful, a complete matron- 
lady-quaker. She has given me two little 
books. Olivia grows a charming girl — full of 
feeling, and thinner than she was ; but I have 
not time to fall in love." 

With the following letter, which belongs to 
the spring or summer of 1 800, Thomas Man- 
ning passes from the correspondence, as we now 
possess it : — 

" Dear Robert, — You need never apologise 
for writing such letters as your last ; you there 
express yourself in a manner that would in- 
terest and charm even a stranger to you. 
Your animal frame seems to vibrate to every 

Breeze that passes over it, in all the varieties of 



interwoven harmony. You are 'tremblingly 
alive all o'er.' God forbid that you should 
ever lose the delicacy of your sensibility. God 
forbid that the rude, harsh gusts of life should 
ever sweep over your soul without eliciting dis- 
cordant emotions. But I hope the time will 
come when your frame will lose some of its pres- 
ent morbid aptitude to vibrate — when your mind 
will become stronger and more fixed. You 
must not despair of seeing many happy days 
yet. You will have many bright gleams of 
exquisite lustre in this the morning of your 
life, and the afternoon will be a settled sun- 
shine, in which you will enjoy more real 
happiness than many, who are less prone to 
sensation, ever experience in all the vigour of 
their blood. 

" I often picture to myself a contingency, 
which most likely never will take place, but 
yet may, and which I contemplate with a 
strange fondness and delight. 'Tis of you and 
myself travelling together abroad — in the South 
of France, or in Italy, or in Switzerland, or in 
some part of Spain. Tour susceptibility and 
my mathematical caution combined would 
form an excellent travelling temperament, I 


think. If there was peace over Europe, and 
you and I had each of us independent fortunes, 
I am sure I should propose it to you. I should 
like to know whether this idea pleases you as it 
does me, but I should guess not, for which I 
could give most sage reasons ; and if I guessed 
wrong, I could give most sage reasons again, 
to account for the erroneousness of my former 
reasons. In short, if / should guess^ it would be 
guessing. Your brother Plumstead is coming 
to-day with Wordsworth to dine with me. The 
little I saw of him, when he passed through 
Cambridge before, had given me a very inade- 
quate idea of him — indeed, I was just then un- 
tuned to everything new. I now find the resem- 
blance between him and Charles and you much 
stronger than I imagined, both in person and 
manner. He reminds me oi you perpetually, 
and indeed, Robert, he is not therefore the less 
welcome ! In truth, I shall be sorry to part 
with him — he revives a train of ideas in my 
mind which I would not break off willingly. 
" Farewell, my dear, my very dear 
" Friend — yr. 
" Truly, T. M." 



The suggested tour was never accomplished, 
although Manning himself left England for 
France two years later in order to study Chi- 
nese against his intended travels in China. Of 
his adventures in China and in Thibet this is 
not the place to tell. 



1800- 1 80 1 

Lamb's next letter to Robert Lloyd was dated 
July 2, 1800: — 

" Dear Robert, — My mind has been so barren 
and idle of late, that I have done nothing. I 
have received many a summons from you, and 
have repeatedly sat down to write, and broke 
off from despair of sending you anything 
worthy your acceptance. I have had such a 
deadness about me. Man delights not me nor 
woman neither. I impute it in part, or alto- 
gether, to the stupefying effect which continued 
fine weather has upon me. I want some rains, 
or even snow and intense cold winter nights, to 
bind me to my habitation, and make me value 
it as a home — a sacred character which it has 
not attained with me hitherto. I cannot read 
or write when the sun shines : I can only walk. 

" I must tell you that, since I wrote last I 


have been two days at Oxford on a visit (long 
put off) to Gutch's family (my landlord). I 
was much gratified with the Colleges and Li- 
braries and what else of Oxford I could see in 
so short a time. In the All Souls' Library is 
a fine head of Bishop Taylor, which was one 
great inducement to my Oxford visit. In the 
Bodleian are many Portraits of illustrious Dead, 
the only species of painting I value at a farthing. 
But an indubitable good Portrait of a great man 
is worth a pilgrimage to go and see. Gutch's 
family is a very fine one, consisting of well- 
grown sons and daughters, and all likely and 
well-favour'd. What is called a Happy family 
— that is, according to my interpretation, a nu- 
merous assemblage of young men and women, 
all fond of each other to a certain degree, and 
all happy together, but where the very number 
forbids any two of them to get close enough 
to each other to share secrets and be friends. 
That close intercourse can only exist (com- 
monly, I think,) in a family of two or three. 
I do not envy large families. The fratemal 
affection by diffusion and multi-participation is 
ordinarily thin and weak. They don't get near 
enough to each other. 



" I expected to have had an account of 
Sophia's being brought to bed before this time ; 
but I remain in confidence that you will send 
me the earliest news. I hope it will be happy. 

" Coleridge is settled at Keswick, so that the 
probability is that he will be once again united 
with your Brother. Such men as he and 
Wordsworth would exclude solitude in the 
Hebrides or Thule. 

" Pray have you seen the New Edition of 
Burns, including his posthumous works'? I 
want very much to get a sight of it, but cannot 
afford to buy it, my Oxford Journey, though 
very moderate, having pared away all super- 

" Will you accept of this short letter, accom- 
panied with professions of deepest regard for 

" Yours unalterably, 

" C. Lamb."^ 

' It may have been during this visit to Oxford that Lamb met his 
"Gentle Giantess" — the widow Blacket, " the largest female he ever 
had the pleasure of beholding." "With more than man's bulk 
[wrote Elia], her humours and occupations are eminently feminine. 
She sighs, — being six foot high. She languisheth, — being two feet 
wide. She worketh slender sprigs upon the delicate muslin, — her 
fingers being capable of moulding a Colossus. She sippeth her wine 


Gutch, by the way, was more than Lamb's 
landlord; he was his old schoolfellow at Christ's 
Hospital. At this period Lamb and his sister 
occupied rooms in Gutch's house in South- 
ampton Buildings, Chancery Lane. 

The reference to Sophia Lloyd, then living 
with her husband at Olton Green, Mr. Lloyd's 
farm, near Birmingham, previous to their de- 
parture for Ambleside, needs no explanation. 
Her expectancy was realised a few weeks later, 
when she gave birth to a boy, whom they 
named Grosvenor. Lamb wrote thus to Man- 
ning on the subject : " I suppose you have 
heard of Sophia Lloyd's good fortune, and 
paid the customary compliments to the parents. 
Heaven keep the new-born infant from star 
blasting and moon blasting, from epilepsy, 
marasmus, and the devil I May he live to see 
many days, and they good ones ; some friends, 

out of her glass daintily, — her capacity being that of a tun of Heidel- 
berg. She goeth mincingly with those feet of her's, whose solidity 
need not fear the black ox's pressure. Softest and largest of thy sex, 
adieu ! By what parting attribute may I salute thee, last and best of 
the Titanesses, — Ogress, fed with milk instead of blood ; not least, or 
least handsome, among Oxford's stately structures, — Oxford, who, in 
its deadest time of vacation, can never properly be said to be empty, 
having thee to fill it." 


and they pretty regular correspondents ! with as 
much wit and wisdom as will eat their bread 
and cheese together under a poor roof without 
quarrelling ! as much goodness as will earn 
heaven. Here I must leave off, my bene- 
dictory powers failing me." 

Lamb's prediction concerning Coleridge and 
a reconciliation was not immediately realised. 
Earlier in the year Coleridge had assured 
Southey that he would not reopen intercourse 
with Charles Lloyd ; and later, in December, 
when the Lloyds had settled at Ambleside, we 
find him writing to Poole that though his old 
pupil is a neighbour, he " shall not see him." 
By degrees, however, he was persuaded, possi- 
bly through the influence of Dorothy Words- 
worth, to be again friendly, and there is a 
record of Coleridge spending a night at Old 
Brathay, whither Charles Lloyd moved from 
Ambleside, in the summer of 1802. 

Of Lloyd's intimacy with Wordsworth we 

have a hint in a letter from Lamb to Coleridge, 

written in August, 1800, wherein he alludes to 

Wordsworth's tragedy " The Borderers," and 

his desire to see it. " Manning has read it," 

he adds, " so has Lloyd, and all Lloyd's family ; 


but I could not get him to betray his trust by 
giving me a sight of it. Lloyd is sadly deficient 
in some of those virtuous vices." 

In a letter to Manning, in October, 1800, 
Lamb wrote : — " Robert Lloyd is come to 
town. Priscilla meditates going to see * Pi- 
zarro' at Drury Lane to-night (from her 
uncle's), under cover of coming to dine with me 
. . . heu tempora ! heu mores ! — I have barely 
time to finish, as I expect her and Robin 
every minute." An account of these London 
experiences, sent by Robert to his father, con- 
tains, it is amusing to note, no mention of the 
play. " My dear Parents," he said, " Priscilla 
wrote you word of my arrival here. I am 
well, and so is my sister. At . present I have 
been in Tower Street, with a few digressions 
to my friend Lamb. Next second day I shall 
call on R. Rarclay. I intend going with Pris- 
cilla to Captain Bevan's ; he spoke very kindly 
to me at Gracechurch meeting to-day." 

In the following month we find Lamb 

telling Manning of an invitation from Charles 

Lloyd to spend a month at Ambleside, which 

he was disposed to accept. As it happened, 

however, he was unable to do so. Not until 


the summer of 1802, when they knocked un- 
expectedly at Coleridge's door, did Charles and 
Mary Lamb see the Lakes. 

Lamb's next letter to Robert was a piece of 
the true Elia, enshrining eulogies of two of his 
loves — Izaak Walton and London. Thus : — 

" Dear Robert, — I shall expect you to bring 
me a brimful account of the pleasure which 
Walton has given you, when you come to 
town. It must square with your mind. The 
delightful innocence and healthfulness of the 
Angler's mind will have blown upon yours like 
a Zephyr. Don't you already feel your spirit 
filled with the scenes '? — the banks of rivers — 
the cowslip beds — the pastoral scenes — the neat 
alehouses — and hostesses and milkmaids, as far 
exceeding Virgil and Pope, as the * Holy Liv- 
ing' is beyond Thomas a Kempis. Are not the 
eating and drinking joys painted to the Life ? 
Do they not inspire you with an immortal 
hunger*? Are not you ambitious of being 
made an Angler *? What edition have you got ? 
Is it Hawkins's, with plates of Piscator, &c. *? 
That sells very dear. I have only been able to 

purchase the last edition without the old Plates 


which pleased my childhood ; the plates being 
worn out, and the old Edition difficult and ex- 
pensive to procure. The ' Complete Angler' 
is the only Treatise written in Dialogues that is 
worth a halfpenny. Many elegant dialogues 
have been written (such as Bishop Berkeley's 
' Minute Philosopher'), but in all of them the 
Interlocutors are merely abstract arguments 
personify'd ; not living dramatic characters, as 
in Walton, where every thing is alive ; the fishes 
are absolutely charactered ; and birds and ani- 
mals are as interesting as men and women.^ 

' Here might be placed a few sentences from a eulogy of Izaak 
Walton by the late Mr. T. E. Brown (which was printed in the 
National Obser-ver of October 14, 1 893) as being curiously worthy of 
standing beside Lamb's praise : — 

" The book is as full of delights as a meadow of cowslips. Who 
can forget the tenderness and gentle reverence with which Walton 
speaks of 'old Oliver Henley' (' now with God') ? The otter hunt 
— what brilliance of atmosphere ! what life ! The dogs are Ring- 
wood, Kilbuck, Sweetlips. Ringwood does the business. And the 
Fishing proper begins, as reason would have it, with a chubb. Viator 
has a try for a chubb. The directions for dressing this chubb are like 
a passage from Leviticus. 

*' And then they aspire to trout. I suppose the meeting with the 
milkmaid, and the account of the supper that follows, can hardly be 
paralleled in our literature. 

" The frog-bait, though, is the locus classicus. Good, kind old soul 
was Walton ; but could you have trusted him with a baby, for instance, 
if some one had told him that a bit of a baby was a capital bait for 


" I need not be at much pains to get the 
' Holy Livings.' We can procure them in ten 
minutes' search at any stall or shop in London. 
By your engaging one for Priscilla, it should 
seem she will be in Town — is that the case *? 
I thought she was fix'd at the Lakes. 

" I perfectly understand the nature of your 
solitarines at Birm., and wish I could divide 
myself, ' like a bribed haunch,' between London 
and it.^ But courage I you will soon be eman- 
cipated, and (it may be) have a frequent power 
of visiting this great place. Let them talk of 
lakes and mountains and romantic dales — all 
that fantastic stuff; give me a ramble by night, 
in the winter nights in London — the Lamps lit 
— the pavements of the motley Strand crowded 
with to and fro passengers — the shops all bril- 
liant, and stuffed with obliging customers and 
obliged tradesmen — give me the old bookstalls 
of London — a walk in the bright Piazzas of 
Covent Garden. I defy a man to be dull in 
such places — perfect Mahometan paradises 
upon earth ! I have lent out my heart with 

' Lamb was remembering, not quite distinctly, FalstafF's remark to 
Mistress Ford (J'hc Merry JVi-ves of Windior, Act v,, scene 5) : " Di- 
vide me like a bribe buck, each a haunch." 


usury to such scenes from my childhood up, 
and have cried with fulness of joy at the mul- 
titudinous scenes of Life in the crowded streets 
of ever dear London. I wish you could fix 
here. I don't know if you quite comprehend 
my low Urban Taste ; but depend upon it that 
a man of any feeling will have given his heart 
and his love in childhood and in boyhood to any 
scenes where he has been bred, as well to dirty 
streets (and smoky walls as they are called) as to 
green lanes, ' where live nibbling sheep,' and to 
the everlasting hills and the Lakes and ocean. 
A mob of men is better than a flock of sheep, 
and a crowd of happy faces justling into the 
playhouse at the hour of six is a more beauti- 
ful spectacle to man than the shepherd driving 
his ' silly' sheep to fold. Come to London and 
learn to sympathise with my unrural notions.' 

* Lamb's " Letters'* contain three variations upon this theme. To 
Manning he wrote (November 28, 1800) : — "Streets, streets, streets, 
markets, theatres, churches, Covent Gardens, shops sparkling with 
pretty faces of industrious milliners, neat sempstresses, ladies cheap- 
ening, gentlemen behind counters lying, authors in the street with 
spectacles, George Dyers (you may know them by their gait), lamps lit 
at night, pastry-cooks' and silversmiths' shops, beautiful (Quakers of 
Pentonville, noise of coaches, drowsy cry of mechanic watchmen at 
night, with bucks reeling home drunk ; if you happen to wake at 
midnight, cries of 'Fire! 'and 'Stop tliief!' j inns of court, with 
10 145 


" Wordsworth has published a second vol. — 
* Lyrical Ballads.' Most of them very good, 
but not so good as first vol. What more can 
I tell you? I believe I told you I have 
been to see Manning. He is a dainty chiel. — 
A man of great Power — an enchanter almost. 
— Far beyond Coleridge or any man in power 

their learned air, and halls and butteries, just like Cambridge colleges; 
old bookstalls, ' Jeremy Taylors,' ' Burtons on Melancholy', and ' Re- 
ligio Medicis,' on every stall. These are thy pleasures, O London ! with 
thy many sins." To Wordsworth — January 30, 1801 — Lamb wrote 
to much the same effect, but less piquantly : "The wonder of these 
sights," he remarked at the end of the catalogue, "impels me into 
night walks about her crowded streets, and I often shed tears in the 
motley Strand from fulness of joy at so much life." And again to 
Manning, at about the time of the letter to Robert: — "By my new 
plan, I shall be as airy, up four pair of stairs, as in the country ; and 
in a garden, in the midst of enchanting (more than Mahometan para- 
dise) London, whose dirtiest drab-frequented alley, and her lowest bow- 
ing tradesman I would not exchange for Skiddaw, Helvellyn, James, 
Walter, and the parson into the bargain. O her lamps of a night ! 
her rich goldsmiths, print-shops, toy-shops, mercers, hardwaremen, 
pastry-cooks, St. Paul's Churchyard, the Strand, Exeter Change, 
Charing Cross, with the man upon a black horse ! Where are thy 
gods, O London ? A'nt you mightily moped on the banks of the Cam ? 
Had you not better come and set up here ? You can't think what a 
difference. All the streets and pavements are pure gold, I warrant 
you. At least, I know an alchemy that turns her mud into that 
metal, — a mind that loves to be at home in crowds." Of the four 
London letters it must be conceded that that to Robert Lloyd is the 



of impressing — when he gets you alone, he 
can act the wonders of Egypt. Only he is 
lazy, and does not always put forth all his 
strength ; if he did, I know no man of genius 
at all comparable to him. 

" Yours as ever, 

" C. L. 

"February 7, 1801." 

It is now that we begin rightly to realise 
what a truly worthy young man Robert Lloyd 
was. Lovers of good literature owe him a 
debt which it would be hard to discharge ; 
firstly, for having extracted precious words 
from one of the choicest minds on England's 
roll, and secondly, for having preserved them. 
Thus did Robert Lloyd incite Charles Lamb 
to write of Jeremy Taylor : — 

" Fletcher's Purple Island is a tedious Alle- 
gory of the Parts of the Human Body. I 
would not advise you to lay out six pence upon 
it. It is not the work of Fletcher, the Co- 
adjutor of Beaumont, but one Phineas, a kins- 
man of his. 

" If by the work of Bishop Taylor, whose 


Title you have not given correctly, you mean 
his Contemplations on the State of Man in 
this Life and that which is to come, I dare 
hope you will join with me in believing it to 
be spurious. The suspicious circumstance of 
its being a posthumous work, with the total 
dissimilarity in style to the genuine works, I 
think evince that it never was the work of 
Doctor Jeremy Taylor, Late Lord Bishop of 
Down and Connor in Ireland, and Adminis- 
trator of the See of Dromore ; such are the 
titles which his sounding title-pages give him, 
and I love the man, and I love his para- 
phernalia, and I like to name him with all his 
attributions and additions. If you are yet but 
lightly acquainted with his real manner, take 
up and read the whole first chapter of the 
Holy Dying ; in particular turn to the first 
paragraph of the 2 sect, of that chapter for a 
simile of a rose, or more truly many similes 
within simile ; for such were the riches of his 
fancy, that when a beauteous image offered, 
before he could stay to expand it into all its 
capacities, throngs of new coming images came 
up, and justled out the first, or blended in 

disorder with it, which imitates the order of 



every rapid mind.' But read all of the first 
chapter by my advice ; and I know I need not 
advise you, when you have read it, to read the 

" Or for another specimen (where so many 
beauties crowd, the judgment has yet vanity 
enough to think it can discern the handsomest, 
till a second judgment and a third ad infinitum 
start up to disallow their elder brother's pre- 
tensions) turn to the Story of the Ephesian 
Matron in the second section of the 5th chap- 
ter of the same Holy Dying'' (I still refer to the 
Dying part, because it contains better matter 

' This is the simile of a rose : " It is a mighty change that is made 
by the death of every person, and it is visible to us who are alive. 
Reckon but from the sprightfulness of youth, and the fair cheeks and 
full eyes of childhood, from the vigorousness and strong flexure of the 
joints of five-and-twenty, to the hollowness and dead paleness, to the 
loathsomeness and horror, of a three days' burial, and we shall perceive 
the distance to be very great and very strange. But so I have seen a 
rose newly springing up from the clefts of its hood, and, at first, it was 
fair as the morning, and full with the dew of heaven, as a lamb's fleece j 
but when a ruder breath had forced open its virgin modesty, and dis- 
mantled its too youthful and unripe retirements, it began to put on 
darkness, and to decline to softness and the symptoms of a sickly age; 
it bowed the head, and broke its stalk; and, at night, having lost 
some of its leaves and all its beauty, it fell into the portion of weeds 
and worn-out faces. The same is the portion of every man and every 

'Lamb was a little in error. The passage is in the eighth section. 


than the ' Holy Living,' which deals more in 
rules than illustrations — I mean in comparison 
with the other only, else it has more and more 
beautiful illustrations — than any prose book 
besides) — read it yourself and show it to Plum- 
stead (with my Love, and bid him write to 
me), and ask him if Willy himself has ever 
told a story with more circumstances of fancy 
and HUMOUR. 

" The paragraph begins, ' But that which is 
to be faulted,' and the story not long after 
follows. Make these references while P. is 
with you, that you may stir him up to the 
Love of Jeremy Taylor, and make a convertite 
of him. Coleridge was the man who first 
solemnly exhorted me to ' study' the works of 
Dr. Jeremy Taylor, and I have had reason to 
bless the hour in which he did it. Read as 
many of his works as you can get. I will 
assist you in getting them when we go a stall 
hunting together in London, and it's odds if we 
don't get a good Beaumt. and Fletcher cheap. 

" Bp. Taylor has more and more beautiful 

imagery, and (what is more to a Lover of 

Willy) more knowledge and description of 

human life and manners than any prose book 



in the language : he has more delicacy and 
sweetness than any mortal, the ' gentle' Shakes- 
pear hardly excepted, — his similies and allu- 
sions are taken, as the bees take honey, from 
all the youngest, greenest, exquisitest parts of 
nature, from plants, and flowers, and fruit, 
young boys and virgins, from little children 
perpetually, from sucking infants, babies' smiles, 
roses, gardens, — his imagination was a spacious 
Garden, where no vile insects could crawl in ; 
his apprehension a ' Court' where no foul 
thoughts kept ' leets and holydays.' 

Snail and worm give no offence. 
Newt nor blind worm be not seen. 
Come not near our fairy queen. 

You must read Bishop Taylor with allow- 
ances for the subjects on which he wrote, and 
the age in which. You may skip or patiently 
endure his tedious discourses on rites and cere- 
monies, Baptism, and the Eucharist, the Clerical 
function, and the antiquity of Episcopacy, a 
good deal of which are inserted in works not 
purely controversial ; his polemical works you 
may skip altogether, unless you have a taste 
for the exertions of vigorous reason and subtle 


distinguishing on uninteresting topics. Such 
of his works as you should begin with, to get 
a taste for him (after which your Love will 
lead you to his Polemical and drier works, as 
Love led Leander ' over boots' knee-deep thro' 
the Hellespont), but read first the Holy Living 
and Dying, and his Life of Christ and Ser- 
mons, both in folio. And, above all, try to 
get a beautiful little tract on the ' Measures 
and offices of Friendship,' printed with his 
opuscula duodecimo, and also at the end of his 
Polemical Discourses in folio. Another thing 
you will observe in Bp. Taylor, without which 
consideration you will do him injustice. He 
wrote to different classes of people. His Holy 
Living and Dying and Life of Christ were de- 
signed and have been used as popular books 
of family Devotion, and have been thumbed 
by old women, and laid about in the window 
seats of old houses in great families, like the 
Bible, and the ' Queene-like-Closet or rare boke 
of Recipes in medicine and cookery, fitted to 
all capacities.' 

" Accordingly in these the fancy is perpetually 
applied to ; any slight conceit, allusion, or an- 
alogy, any ' prettiness,' a story true or false, 



serves for an argument adapted to women and 
young persons, and ' incompetent judgments ;' 
whereas the Liberty of Prophecy (a book in 
your father's bookcase) is a series of severe 
and masterly reasoning, fitted to great Clerks and 
learned Fathers, with no more of Fancy than 
is subordinate and ornamental. — Such various 
powers had the Bishop of Down and Connor, 
Administrator of the See of Dromore I 

" My theme and my story I 

" Farewell, 
" C. Lamb. 

"April 6, 1 80 1." 

It is magnificent. Lamb never wrote more 
glowingly. In his next letter, which is un- 
dated, he returned to the Bishop. Robert seems 
to have replied to the above letter by asking 
Lamb why he did not himself make a selection 
of Jeremy Taylor's "beauties." Lamb was 
properly indignant : — 

" To your Inquiry respecting a selection 

from Bp. Taylor I answer — it cannot be done, 

and if it could it would not take with John 

Bull. It cannot be done, for who can disen- 



tangle and unthread the rich texture of Nature 
and Poetry, sewn so thick into a stout coat 
of theology, without spoiling both lace and 
coat? How beggarly and how bald do even 
Shakespeare's Princely Pieces look when thus 
violently divorced from connection and circum- 
stance ! When we meet with To be or not to 
be, or Jacques' moralisings upon the Deer, or 
Brutus and Cassius' quarrel and reconciliation^ 
— in an Enfield Speaker, or in Elegant Extracts, 
— how we stare, and will scarcely acknowledge 
to ourselves (what we are conscious we feel) that 
they are flat and have no power. Something 
exactly like this have I experienced when I 
have picked out similes and stars from Holy 
Dying and shown them per j<?, as you'd show 
specimens of minerals or pieces of rock. Com- 
pare the grand effect of the Star-paved firma- 
ment, and imagine a boy capable of picking out 
those pretty twinklers one by one and playing 
at chuck-farthing with them. Everything in 
heaven and earth, in man and in story, in 
books and in fancy, acts by Confederacy, by 
juxtaposition, by circumstance and place. 
Consider a fine family (if I were not writing 
to you I might instance your own) of sons and 


daughters, with a respectable father and a 
handsome mother at their heads, all met in one 
house, and happy round one table. Earth 
cannot show a more lovely and venerable sight, 
such as the Angels in heaven might lament 
that in their country there is no marrying or 
giving in marriage. Take and split this Body 
into individuals — show the separate caprices, 
vagaries, &c., of Charles, Rob, or Plum, one a 
Quaker, another a Churchman. The eldest 
daughter seeking a husband out of the pale of 
parental faith — another warping, perhaps — the 
father a prudent, circumspective, do-me-good 
sort of a man blest with children whom no 
ordinary rules can circumscribe. I have not 
room for all particulars — but just as this happy 
and venerable Body of a family loses by split- 
ting and considering individuals too nicely, so 
it is when we pick out Best Bits out of a great 
writer. 'Tis the sum total of his mind which 
affects us. 

" C. L." 

For the sake of continuity the letter has 
been transposed. In the original, the two para- 
graphs that follow came first : — 


" I am not dead nor asleep. But Manning 
is in town, and Coleridge is in town, and I am 
making a thorough alteration in the structure 
of my play for Publication. My brain is over- 
wrought with variety of worldly-intercourse. 
I have neither time nor mind for scribbling. 
Who shall deliver me from the body of this 

" Only continue to write and to believe that 
when the Hour comes I shall strike like Jack 
of the Clock, id esl, I shall once more become 
a regular correspondent of Robert and Plum- 
stead. How is the benevolent, loud-talking, 
Shakspere-loving Brewer V 

The play was " John Woodvil," but the 
" benevolent, loud-talking, Shakspere-loving 
Brewer" eludes research. 

Lamb continued critical. His next letter — 
the last of this little burst of fine enthusiasm — 
dealt with the acting of George Frederick 
Cooke, who was just then drawing crowds to 
Covent Garden : — 

" Cooke in ' Richard the Third' is a perfect 

caricature. He gives you the monster Richard, 


but not the man Richard. Shakespear's bloody 
character impresses you with awe and deep 
admiration of his witty parts, his consummate 
hypocrisy, and indefatigable prosecution of pur- 
pose. You despise, detest, and loathe the cun- 
ning, vulgar, low and fierce Richard, which 
Cooke substitutes in his place. He gives you 
no other idea than of a vulgar villain, rejoycing 
in his being able to over reach, and not possess- 
ing that joy in silent consciousness, but be- 
traying it, like a poor villain, in sneers and dis- 
tortions of the face, like a droll at a country 
fair : not to add that cunning so self-betraying 
and manner so vulgar could never have de- 
ceived the politic Buckingham nor the soft 
Lady Anne : both bred in courts, would have 
turned with disgust from such a fellow. Not 
but Cooke has -powers; but not of discrimi- 
nation. His manner is strong, coarse, and vig- 
ourous, and well adapted to some characters. 
But the lofty imagery and high sentiments and 
high passions of Poetry come black and prose- 
smoked from his prose Lips. I have not seen 
him in Over Reach, but from what I remember 
of the character, I think he could not have 
chosen one more fit. I thought the play a 


highly finished one when I read it some time 
back. I remember a most noble image. Sir 
Giles, drawing his sword in the last scene, says : 

Some undone widow sits upon mine arm. 
And takes away the use on't.' 

This is horribly fine, and I am not sure that 
it did not suggest to me my conclusion of 
Pride's Cure ;^ but my imitation is miserably 

This arm was busy in the day of Naseby : 

'Tis paralytic now, and knows no use of weapons. 

Pierre and Jaffier are the best things in Ot- 
way. Belvidera is a poor Creature, and has 
had more than her due fame. Monimia is a 
little better, but she whines. I like Calista in 
the Fair Penitent better than either of Otway's 
women. Lee's Massacre of Paris is a noble 
play, very chastely and finely written. His 
Alexander is full of that madness ' which 
rightly should possess a poet's brain.' (Edipus 
is also a fine play, but less so than these two. 

• See Massinger's " New Way to pay Old Debts." 
' "John Woodvil" was at first called " Pride's Cure." 


It is a joint production of Lee and Dryden. 
All For Love begins with uncommon Spirit, but 
soon flags, and is of no worth upon the whole. 
The last scene of Young's Revenge is sublime : 
the rest of it not worth \d} 

" I want to have your opinion and Plum- 
stead's on Cooke's ' Richard the Third.' I am 
possessed with an admiration of the genuine 
Richard, his genius, and his mounting spirit, 
which no consideration of his cruelties can 
depress. Shakespear has not made Richard so 
black a Monster as is supposed. Wherever he 
is monstrous, it was to conform to vulgar 
opinion. But he is generally a Man. Read his 
most exquisite address to the Widowed Queen 
to court her daughter for him — the topics of 
maternal feeling, of a deep knowledge of the 
heart, are such as no monster could have sup- 
plied.^ Richard must have felt before he could 

* Pierre, Jaffier and Belvidera are in Otway's "Venice Preserved," 
and Monimia is in the same writer's "Orphan." "The Fair Peni- 
tent" is Rowe's adaptation of "The Fatal Dowry," by Massinger 
and Field. 

' Lamb refers to the whole of Scene iv. of Act iv. It will be 
noticed that he has no prejudice in favour of any particular form of 
spelling Shakespeare's name. Shakspeare, Shakespear, and Shakspere 
— he offers all three- 



feign so well ; tho' ambition choked the good 
seed. I think it the most finished piece of 
Eloquence in the world ; of persuasive oratory 
far above Demosthenes, Burke, or any man, far 
exceeding the courtship of Lady Anne. Her 
relenting is barely natural, after all ; the more 
perhaps S.'s merit to make impossible appear 
probable^ but the ^een's consent (taking in all 
the circumstances and topics, private and public, 
with his angelic address, able to draw the host 
of [piece cut out of letter] Lucifer), is probable ; 
and [piece cut out of letter] resisted it. This 
observation applies to many other parts. All 
the inconsistency is, that Shakespeare's bet- 
ter genius was forced to struggle against the 
prejudices which made a monster of Richard. 
He set out to paint a monster, but his human 
sympathies produced a man. 

" Are you not tired with all this ingenious 
criticism*? I am. 

" Richard itself is totally metamorphosed in 
the wretched acting play of that name, which you 
will see : altered by Cibber. 

" God bless you, 

[The signature is cut off.] 

"July 26, 1 801." 



And then came a space of some three years, 
in which Lamb either wrote not at all to his 
young friend, or wrote nothing that has been 
preserved. Probably the correspondence ceased, 
for a partnership in a printing and bookselling 
business had been found for Robert in Birming- 
ham, and its cares seem to have been engross- 



ROBERT Lloyd's marriage 

We may gather from references in Lamb's 
letters to Manning and others, that during this 
interval he had occasional news of the Lloyd 
family; while in the summer of 1802, when his 
sister and he visited Coleridge at Keswick, they 
saw Charles Lloyd. But of that meeting there 
is no record beyond the bare statement. 

Of Robert Lloyd we have no tidings what- 
ever until March, 1803, when, in writing to 
Southey, Lamb said : " Robert Lloyd has writ- 
ten me a masterly letter, containing a character 
of his father. See how different from Charles 
he views the old man ! {Literatim) : ' My 
father smokes, repeats Homer in Greek, and 
Virgil, and is learning, when from business, 
with all the vigour of a young man, Italian. 
He is, really, a wonderful man. He mixes 
public and private business, the intricacies of 

disordering life, with his religion and devotion. 


No one more rationally enjoys the romantic 
scenes of Nature, and the chit-chat and little 
vagaries of his children ; and, though sur- 
rounded with an ocean of affairs, the very neat- 
ness of his most obscure cupboard in the house 
passes not unnoticed. I never knew anyone 
view with such clearness, nor so well satisfied 
with things as they are, and make such allow- 
ance for things which must appear perfect 
Syriac to him.' By the last [says Lamb] he 
means the Lloydisms of the younger branches. 
His portrait of Charles (exact as far as he has 
had opportunities of noting him) is most 
exquisite : — ' Charles is become steady as a 
church, and as straightforward as a Roman 
road. It would distract him to mention any- 
thing that was not as plain as sense ; he seems 
to have run the whole scenery of life, and now 
rests as the formal precision of non-existence,' 
Here is genius, I think [says Lamb again], and 
'tis seldom a young man, a Lloyd, looks at a 
father (so differing) with such good-nature while 
he is alive." 

And so we come to Lamb's next letter to 
Robert, and learn something more of the young 
man's employment during the interval. He had 


been falling in love. Lamb wrote (with some 
forgetfulness of his appreciation of Robert's 
letter, passages from which he had copied out 
for Coleridge, as we have just seen) : — 

" Dear Robert, — I received your notes safe, 
and thank you for them. It seems you are 
about to be married. Joy to you and uninter- 
rupted satisfaction in that state. But who is 
the Lady ? It is the character of your letters 
that you omit facts, dates, names, and matter, 
and describe nothing but feelings, in which, as 
I cannot always partake, as being more intense 
in degree or different in kind from my own 
tranquil ones, I cannot always well tell how to 
reply. Your dishes are too much sauced and 
spiced and flavoured for me to suppose that 
you can relish my plain meats and vulgar ali- 
ment. Still, Robert, if I cannot always send 
you of the same, they have a smack and a 
novelty, a Robert-ism about them, that make 
them a dainty stimulus to my palate at times. 
I have little to tell you of You are mistaken, 
I am disengaged from all newspaper connex- 
ions, and breathe a freer air in consequence. I 

was bound, like Gulliver, in a multitude of 



little chains, which, by quotidian leasing swelled 
to a rack and a gibbet in the year's account. I 
am poorer but happier. Your three pounds 
came seasonably, but I doubt whether I am 
fairly entitled to them as a debt. 

" I am obliged to break off here, and would 
not send this unfinished, but that you might 
otherwise be uneasy about the moneys. 

" Am I ever to see you ? for it is like letters 
to the dead, or for a friend to write to his friend 
in the Fortunate Isles, or the Moon, or at the 
Antipodes, to address a line to ONE in War- 
wickshire that I am never to see in London. I 
shall lose the very face of Robert by disuse, and 
I question, if I were a painter, if I could now 
paint it from memory. 

" I could tell you many things, but you are 

so spiritual and abstracted, that I fear to insult 

you with tidings of this world. But may your 

approaching husband-hood humanise you. I 

think I see a dawn. I am sure joy is rising 

upon you, and I stand a tiptoe to see the sun 

ascending till it gets up and up, and * while a 

man tells the story,' shows at last a fair face 

and a full light. God bless you, Robt., 

"Tuesday, March 13, 1804." " C. L. 



The Lady was Hannah Hart, a Quakeress, 
the daughter of Francis Hart, banker, of Not- 
tingham ; and she seems to have been a model 
wife. From the evidence of a bundle of letters 
written by Robert Lloyd during his courtship 
it can be said that he wooed her on a high, 
almost a transcendental, plane. To read docu- 
ments so intimate is not a congenial task, but 
a biographer must take his material wherever 
he can. The letters in question are distin- 
guished by none of the acumen and literary 
skill which Lamb admired in Robert's portraits 
of the two Charles Lloyds, nor have they any 
of the pretty endearments and private tender- 
nesses in which love letters are often so wealthy : 
rather are they rhapsodic and rhetorical. One 
interesting fact which they reveal is that Rob- 
ert had joined the militia, a step suggesting 
that his break with Quakerism had been com- 
pleted. The fact is, however, that he returned 
to the fold. 

Robert was married in the Castle Dunnington 

Meeting-house, in Leicestershire, on August 2, 

1804, and with this marriage in particular and 

marriages in general was Lamb's next letter 

occupied. The date is September 13, 1804, 


and it contains a passage in Elia's best manner 
on the lenitives of the single state : — 

"Dear Robert, — I was startled in a very 
pleasant manner by the contents of your let- 
ter. It was like your good self to take so 
handsome an opportunity of renewing an 
old friendship. I thank you kindly for your 
offers to bring me acquainted with Mrs. LI. 
I cannot come now, but assuredly I will 
some time or other, to see how this new rela- 
tion sits upon you. I am naturally shy of 
new faces ; but the Lady who has chosen 
my old friend Robert cannot have a repelling 
one. Assure her of my sincere congratula- 
tions and friendly feelings. Mary joins in 
both with me, and considers herself as only 
left out of your kind invitation by some 
LAPSUS STYLI. We have already had all 
the holydays we can have this year. We have 
been spending our usual summer month at 
Richmond, from which place we traced the 
banks of the old Thames for ten and twenty 
miles, in daily walks or rides, and found beauties 
which may compare with Ulswater and Win- 
dermere. We visited Windsor, Hampton, &c., 


&c. — but this is a deviation from the subject 
with which I began my letter. 

" Some day I certainly shall come and see 
you in your new light ; no longer the restless 
(but good) [? single] Robert ; but now the 
staid, sober (and not less good) married Robert. 
And how does Plumstead, the impetuous, 
take your getting the start of him*? When 
will he subside into matrimony? Priscilla has 
taken a long time indeed to think about it. I 
will suppose that her first choice is now her 
final ; though you do not expressly say that she 
is to be a Wordsworth. I wish her, and dare 
promise her, all happiness. 

"All these new nuptials do not make me 
unquiet in the perpetual prospect of celibacy. 
There is a quiet dignity in old bachelorhood, a 
leisure from cares, noise, &c., an enthronisation 
upon the armed-chair of a man's feeling that he 
may sit, walk, read, unmolested, to none ac- 
countable — but hush ! or I shall be torn in 
pieces like a churlish Orpheus by young mar- 
ried women and bride-maids of Birmingham. 
The close is this, to every man that way 
of life, which in his election is best. Be as 
happy in yours as I am determined to be in 



mine, and we shall strive lovingly who shall 
sing best the praises of matrimony, and the 
praises of singleness. 

" Adieu, my old friend in a new character, 
and believe me that no ' wounds' have pierced 
our friendship ; only a long want of seeing each 
other has disfurnished us of topics on which to 
talk. Is not your new fortunes a topic which 
may hold us for some months (the honey 
months at least) *? 

" C. Lamb." 

Priscilla Lloyd — who had definitely left the 
Friends, although, as her son, the Bishop of St. 
Andrews, in his " Annals of My Early Life," 
with some glee tells us, she was not baptized 
until after her marriage — became Mrs. Chris- 
topher Wordsworth within a short time of 
Lamb's question. Her husband was then a 
Norfolk rector, but a little while later he be- 
came vicar of St. Mary's, Lambeth, where 
most of Priscilla's married life was spent. Of 
that more will be said in another place. 


ROBERT Lloyd's london visit 


One result of Robert Lloyd's marriage was 
to interrupt his correspondence with Lamb. 
This it did so completely that between Lamb's 
last letter — of September, 1804 — and the one 
that followed it, more than four years elapsed. 
Nothing is much easier than to allow a corre- 
spondence, even of the most familiar nature, to 
fail, and among received means of causing a 
break none has more vogue than marriage. 
Marriage in itself is sufficient, but Robert Lloyd 
was also partner in a business which demanded 
a large share of his energies, and the cares of 
a young family were thickening upon him. 
Moreover, Lamb's letters had always been re- 
plies to his friend's, and therefore when the 
friend ceased to write. Lamb ceased too.^ 

' Mr. W. P. James, writing in the "St. James's Gazette," at the 
time when certain extracts from Lamb's letters to Robert Lloyd were 
appearing in the " Cornhill Magazine" (May and June, 1898), treated 


Early in 1809, however, Robert Lloyd had 
occasion to visit London on business. He 
wrote to Lamb forewarning him of his ap- 
proach. Lamb replied at once : — 

" Dear Robert, — A great gap has been filled 
up since our intercourse was broken off. We 
shall at least have some things to talk over 
when we meet. That you should never have 
been in London since I saw you last is a fact 
which I cannot account for on the principles 
of my own mental formation. You are worthy 

Robert with severity. Thus : " Robert Lloyd may have had all the 
gifts and graces Charles Lamb said he had ; but this grace apparently 
vjras not given him, to appreciate at its real worth his rare privilege in 
being Charles Lamb's Correspondent. Imagine receiving such letters 
as those printed ... in ' Cornhill,' the one on Isaak Walton, the 
one on Jeremy Taylor, the one on London, and then deliberately fore- 
going the chance of receiving more of the same kind for lack of an 
occasional line of his own. He married a mere mortal wife, and 
therefore he could not write ! And so for three whole years there 
were no more letters from Lamb. People said the King of Bavaria was 
mad because he had performances of ' Lohengrin' in an empty 
theatre for his own private delectation. What is one to say of the 
man who might have gone on receiving the most perfect little essays 
of Elia by post all for his sole self, and lightly threw away the privi- 
lege ?" What, indeed ? With every desire in the world to appear 
for Robert Lloyd's defence (as his biographer naturally has), it is im- 
possible to find anything to say. 



to be mentioned with Claudian's Old Man of 
Verona.' I forbear to ask you any questions 
concerning your family : who are dead, and who 
married ; I will not anticipate our meeting. I 
have been in total darkness respecting you all 
these years. I am just up ; and have heard, 
without being able to confirm the fact, that 
Drury Lane Theatre is burnt to the ground. 
Of Walton's ' Angler' a new edition is just 
published with the original plates revived. I 
think of buying it. The old editions are two 
guineas, and two guineas and a half I have 
not forgotten our ride from Saffron Walden, 
and the madness of young parson Thomson 
of Cambridge, that I took your brother to see. 
He is gone as a missionary to the East. 

"I live at present at No. 16 Mitre Court 
Buildings, Inner Temple. I shall move at Lady 
Day, or a little later : if you don't find me in 
M.C.B., I shall be at No. ^ or \ Inner Temple 
Lane, at either of which places I shall be 

' " De Sene Veronensi, qui suburbium nunquam egressus est;" or, 
as Cowley translated it, in his essay "On the Dangers of an Honest 
Man in Much Company : " 

'* Happy the man, who his whole time doth bound 

Within th' inclosure of his little ground " — and so on. 


happy to shake my old friend Robert by the 

"C. L. 

"Saturday, Feb. 25, 1809." 

There has been a previous allusion to the 
young parson Thomson in an earlier letter, 
(see page 119). The story of the ride from 
Saffron Walden will now never be known. Of 
the accuracy of the rumour of the burning of 
Drury Lane the "Rejected Addresses" are 
testimony enough. 

Robert Lloyd reached London late in March, 
and forthwith plunged into excitement. The 
story of this momentous visit is told in a series 
of sprightly letters to his wife — letters of greater 
interest far than those which he penned as a 
wooer. The first ran thus : 

"March, 1809. 
" My dearest Hannah, — My head has been 
in a perpetual whirl since I came here, and in 
two days I have lived many weeks. I would 
fain have written to you by to-day's post, but 
it was scarcely practicable. The first thing 
after breakfast we went to the Horse Guards 


to hear the band play while they mounted 
guard. We afterwards went to Mr. Millar's, 
bookseller, in Albemarle Street, where we had a 
complete treat. For instance, we saw a copy 
of the ' Shipwreck,' printed on velvet [*? vel- 
lum], and the price thirty guineas — indeed, I 
never saw such splendour in the furniture of 
Books before. Mr. Millar was not in the shop, 
but in a book room fitted up in the first style 
of Elegance. From thence we went to the 
London Institution, where I was completely 
delighted. The House of Commons after- 
wards attracted our notice — the place where 
Fox and Pitt sat occasioned most lively emo- 
tions. I should have gone to-night in the gal- 
lery, but a circumstance, as follows, prevented 
me. Having called at the India House and 
met with my old friend Lamb, who asked me 
to dinner, which I, of course, accepted, neces- 
sarily prevented my attending the House of 
Commons. Lamb, and his sister especially, re- 
ceived me in a very kind manner ; we supped 
with Godwin, and from him I am this moment 
returned — (twelve o'clock). You would, I 
know, my dear love, have been delighted in 
beholding his family ; he appears to keep no 


servants, and his children to occupy their 
places. I was much gratified in seeing the 
three children of Mrs. WoUstone craft, two 
girls and a son. One of the girls, the eldest, 
is a sweet, unaffected creature about fourteen. 
She handed me porter, and attracted much of 
my attention. Mrs. Godwin is not a pleasant 
woman, a wife far different from the one you 
would suppose such a man would have selected. 
I dine out again to-morrow, and shall sup with 
Lamb. Godwin is a bookseller I ! ! ! ! ! I I 
" I am your sincerely affecte. Husband, 

"R. Lloyd." 

The phalanx of notes of exclamation may 
be taken to signify Robert's excitement on find- 
ing that Godwin was a bookseller ioo : that is 
to say, in Robert's own line of business. His 
old friend. Lamb, shared his opinion concerning 
Mrs. Godwin. Lamb called her the Bad Baby, 

and, in one letter, " that d d Mrs. Godwin." 

The Bad Baby, however, viewed Robert more 
leniently. " I must not, it seems," wrote God- 
win at the end of one of his subsequent com- 
mercial letters to Robert's firm, " close my 
letter without some kind message from Mrs. 


Godwin to Mr. Lloyd, who has become, I know 
not how, strangely a favourite with her." And 
again, in another, he remarked : " Mrs. Godwin 
is just now from home, or I am sure that she 
would add messages to this letter that I should 
prove myself a mere bungler if I endeavoured 
to supply." 

Robert was mistaken in crediting Mary 
WoUstonecraft with three children. He must 
not, however, be blamed, for Godwin's was a 
confusing household. Mary WoUstonecraft 
had but two children : the ill-starred Fanny 
Imlay, born in 1794, and Mary, in 1797. In 
1809, therefore, Fanny would be fifteen and 
Mary twelve ; so that it probably was Fanny 
and not the future Mrs. Shelley, who plied the 
young visitor with porter. 

Charles Lloyd would, of course, be known to 
Godwin, at any rate by name, for he had pub- 
licly interested himself in the philosopher's 
theories. The preface to " Edmund Oliver" tells 
us that it was written to confute Godwin's views 
on free love, while among Charles Lloyd's poems 
is an address to Mary WoUstonecraft. 

Here is Robert's second letter : 



" Thursday Morning, half-past 8. 

" My dearest Hannah, — I still go on enjoy- 
ing myself exceedingly. Yesterday I attended 
the meeting in Westminster Hall for the pur- 
pose of thanking Colonel Wardle. I was nearly 
squeezed to death. ... I dined with a Book- 
seller, and then adjourned to my old friend 
Lamb. Mr. Rickman, secretary to the Speaker, 
Capt. Burney, Bro. of Miss Burney the novelist, 
and Mr. Dyer the poet [G.D.] were of the 
party. We had nothing but cold pork and a 
cheese and no other beveridge than porter. 
Pipes were introduced. I did not return till 
half-past twelve. 

" I shall call upon my Uncle John to-day, 
and intend sleeping at his House on Friday and 
Saturday. Of course you will continue to direct 
to me here ; though, much to my disgrace, a 
letter from you has not appeared ; however, I 
confidently look for one this morning. I write 
thus early having innumerable engagements, 
and doubting whether a spare hour will occur 
during the day. Much to my surprise, I found 
your Brother's card on our table this morning. 
Of course I shall call upon him, and congratu- 
late them on the festival. The Shakspeare 
» 177 


Gallery, Miss Linwood's Exhibition, and Co- 
vent Garden new Theatre, the Opera, and the 
play remain to be seen. Drury Lane Theatre 
still smoaks. What a sad ruin does it exhibit ! 
" How is little Mary ? and how are you ? 
Pray write frequent and believe me 

" Most sincerely your friend, 

" R. Lloyd." 

In a postscript, appended at 1 1 o'clock, Rob- 
ert says that he has engaged to accompany 
some friends to the Theatre on Monday " to 
see Mrs. Siddons, and to the Opera on Tues- 
day." He adds : " Pray dispatch me from the 
Dog Inn at seven O'clock in the Evening 2 pair 
of White silk stockings. I must go smart to 
the Opera, — I have ordered a pair of dress- 
clothes in London." 

Easter, 1809, brought Hannah Lloyd a let- 
ter, written on Good Friday, telling of further 
adventures : — 

" I drank tea in company with Mr. Godwin 
last night ; he is a most delightful Man — the 
modulation of his voice was beautiful, and his 
language uncommonly correct. I shall call 
upon [him] again to-morrow, to give him an 



order ; poor Man, he is much to be felt for. I 
shall tell you all on my return, a volume would 
scarcely contain what I have seen, felt, and 
heard. . . . Lamb was quite delighted with 
the * Walton' I brought with me. I go with 
him to Captain Burney's to-morrow Evening, 
and most of Sunday I shall pass with my old 
friend. I met Wordsworth by accident yester- 
day. He looked very well, but he gave an 
unpleasant account of Priscilla, she has had 
something of a relapse, and her ague has re- 
turned again." 

Robert seems to have intercepted Lamb in 
his purpose of buying the new "Walton." 
The next communication from London, dated 
April 3, 1809, offers a pleasant glimpse of 
Charles and Mary Lamb at home : — 

" I spent Saturday Evening with Mr. God- 
win. He is a delightful man, and mild as a 
child — his accents are most fascinating. The 
Picture of Mrs. WoUstonecraft [*? hangs] over 
the fireplace. Yes, my love^ I shall have vol- 
umes to tell you, and an infinite store for my 
Mind to dwell upon. Oh, that you were with 
me I how delicious then would be my delight I 

The time I hope will come when we shall visit 


London together ; it is indeed a place rich with 
the stores of amusement and interest. I spent 
yesterday with Lamb and his sister — it is 
sweetly gratifying to see them. They were 
not up when I went. Mary (his sister) the 
moment I entered the Room, calling from her 
chamber, said — ' Robert, I am coming.' They 
appear to sleep in Rooms by each other. 

" If we may use the expression, their Union 
of affection is what we conceive of marriage in 
Heaven. They are the World one to the other. 
They are writing a Book of Poetry for chil- 
dren together. Lamb and I amused ourselves 
in the afternoon in reading the manuscripts — I 
shall send one or two of the pieces in my next. 
Lamb is the most original being you can con- 
ceive, and suited to me, in some of his habits, or 
ways of thinking, to a tee." [Several lines are 
unfortunately here cut away. Apparently they 
formed part of a character sketch of Lamb, for 
the letter continues] " Sun rises and where it 
sets he is perfectly indifferent about, and is 
ignorant which way the wind blows." 

On the next day Robert wrote again. This 
is a passage : — 

" We saw the Opera dancing last night, so 



we shall not miss much ; girls from nine to fif- 
teen, of sorted sizes and proportions, danced ; 
it had a pretty effect. I was much delighted 
with the Opera House, it quite eclipses Drury 
Lane. Mrs. Siddons's voice filled the immense 
expanse ; the Boxes have crimson curtains on 
each side which give a grand appearance. 

" I was delighted with the meeting at Guild- 
hall on Saturday. I dined with our brother 
and sister to-day — we decline going to the 
Opera ; I prefer Lamb's company, which I shall 
enjoy to-night. I shall endeavour to see Mrs. 
Siddons and Kemble in ' Macbeth.' Paper 
won't allow of more, I am glad chickies are 

Four pieces from Charles and Mary Lamb's 
" Poetry for Children" were then copied : — 
" Choosing a Name" (" I have got a new-born 
sister"), " Breakfast" (" A dinner-party — coffee, 
tea"), " Choosing a Profession" (" A Creole 
Boy from the West Indies brought"), and 
" Summer Friends" (" The Swallow is a sum- 
mer bird"), the first signed " C. L.," and the 
three others " M. L." In his next letter, the 
last of the series, Robert referred to them 

again : — 



" I sent you on Tuesday a few verses, written 
2 p 3] of them by Mary Lamb and the other 
by C. Lamb. It is task work to them, they 
are writing for money, and a Book of Poetry 
for Children being Hkely to sell has induced 
them to compose one ; the verses I sent you 
were part of the collection. . . . 

" I was much pleased with Kemble and Mrs. 
Siddons in ' Macbeth' on Tuesday. I spend 
this evening with Lamb — my spirits were 
pare] uncommonly flat. I dined yesterday 
with Charles's Old friend [James] White. By- 
the-by, I saw Mrs. Clarke yesterday — she was 
walking in Cheapside with a Mr. Sullivan, who 
is now reported to live with her. She has very 
fine large Eyes, and [is] very much like a 
picture in the shops, where she is represented as 
lying almost at length on a sofa. I have not 
seen it in Birmingham, the one I saw there is 
not at all like.' 

* Mrs. Clarke was, of course, the notorious adventuress, the mis- 
tress of the Duke of York. The Duke had resigned his position as 
Commander-in-Chief on the 20th of March, 1809, a few days before 
Robert reached London, in consequence of the scandals caused by this 
liaison. On the 28th of the same month Lamb wrote to Manning ; — 

'* If you see newspapers you will read about Mrs. Clarke. The 
sensation in London about this nonsensical business is marvellous. I 


" This morning I saw the London Institution, 
the European Gallery (a most splendid col- 
lection of pictures and paintings), Miss Lin- 
wood's needlework (grand indeed), and the 
Panorama of Grand Cairo, with which I was 
much pleased — the Pyramids were a fine object. 
This evening I intend calling upon Lamb and 
Godwin. My time is fully filled up. I did 
not dine yesterday till near six. I long to 
come home and rest my weary feet by my own 
fireside ... I love the employment of writing 
to you. You see my letters through a false 
medium ; it is something like the beauty which 
the sun gives to inanimate objects. If I had 
written this morning, a greater tide of affection 
would have flowed. That we cannot always 

remember nothing in my life like it : thousands of ballads, caricatures, 
lives of Mrs. Clarke, in every blind alley. Yet in the midst of this 
stir [he adds], a sublime dancing-master, wrho attends a family we 
know at Kensington, being asked a question about the progress of the 
examinations in the House, inquired who Mrs. Clarke was. He had 
heard nothing of it. He had evaded this omnipresence by utter insig- 
nificancy ! The Duke [of York] should make that man his confi- 
dential valet. I proposed locking him up, barring him the use of his 
fiddle and red pumps until he had minutely perused and committed to 
memory the whole body of the examinations, which employed the 
House of Commons a fortnight, to teach him to be more attentive to 
what concerns the public." 



command. Accept of my dearest love, and 
believe me, 

" Your sincerely afFecte. Husband, 

"Robert Lloyd." 

And so ended the London visit. 

Lamb's next letter to Robert Lloyd was 
dated January i, 1810. Robert, falling into 
line with other of Lamb's friends, seems to 
have presented him with a bird. The reply 
ran: — 

" Dear Robert, — In great haste I write. The 
Turkey is down at the fire, and some pleasant 
friends are come in to partake of it. The 
Sender's Health shall not be forgot. What 
you tell me of your Father's perseverance in 
his honourable task gives me great pleasure. 
Seven Books are a serious earnest of the whole, 
which I hope to see finish'd. 

" We had a delightful month in Wiltshire, 

four weeks of uniform fine weather, the only 

fine days which had been all the summer. Saw 

Salisbury Cathedral, Stonehenge, Wilton, &c., 

&c. Mary is in excellent health, and sends her 


Love. Accept of mine, with my kind respects 
to Mrs. LI and to your father and mother. 

" Coleridge's Friend is occasionally sublime. 
What do you think of that Description of 
Luther in his Study in one of the earlier num- 
bers ? ^ The worst is, he is always promising 
something which never comes ; it is now 1 8th 
Number, and continues introductory ; the i yth 
(that stupid long letter) was nothing better than 
a Prospectus, and ought to have preceded the 
1st Number. But I rejoice that it lives. 

" When you come to London, you will find 
us at No. 4 Inner Temple Lane, with a few old 
Books, a few old Hogarth's round the room, 
and the Household Gods at last establish'd. 
The feeling of Home, which has been slow to 
come, has come at last. May I never move 
again, but may my next Lodging be my 

" Yours truly, 
" C. Lamb." 

' In the revised edition of " The Friend," this description is in the 
Second Section, Essay z^ ''The First Landing Stage." 

" On the 2nd of January, 1810, the day after supplying Robert 
Lloyd with this brief description of his new lodging, Lamb, in writing 
to Manning, thus amplified it : — 

" In my best room is a choice collection of the works of Hogarth, an 



The remark concerning Mr. Lloyd's perse- 
verance is an allusion to the translation of the 
"Odyssey," upon which, as we shall see later, he 
was then engaged. The Wiltshire holiday was 
a visit to Hazlitt. To Coleridge Lamb had 
already written praise of the account of Luther 
in the Warteburg, in " The Friend :" " It is as 
fine as anything I ever read. God forbid that 
a man who has such things to say should be 
silenced for want of i oo/." " The Friend" 
lived only ten months, dying in March, 1810, 
before there was time to fulfil many of the 
promises to which Lamb referred. 

English painter of some humour. In my next best are shelves con- 
taining a small but well-chosen library. My best room commands a 
court, in which there are trees and a pump, the water of which is ex- 
cellent cold, with brandy, and not very insipid without. Here I hope 
to set up my rest, and not quit till Mr. Powell, the undertaker, gives 
me notice that I may have possession of my last lodging. He lets 
lodgings for single gentlemen." 




Robert Lloyd can never have been strong. 
He came of a delicate family, and he did not 
spare himself Impulsive, sensitive, sympa- 
thetic, and enthusiastic, he flung himself into 
whatever interested him with reckless abandon 
and wholeheartedness, and passed through the 
emotions of half a score of ordinary persons. 
Hence, when financial trouble came, or, if it 
did not actually come, loomed threateningly 
ahead, his panic was so complete as seriously to 
undermine his strength. 

Immediately upon this worry came the ill- 
ness of his brother Thomas, which he felt pro- 
foundly. Natures of such sensibility suffer in 
a degree inconceivable to those who are blessed 
with apathy, and under the combined assault 
Robert's constitution, at its best never qualified 
to support much strain, gave way. 


The autumn of 1811 was indeed a terrible 
season for the Lloyd family. Thomas Lloyd 
died on September 1 2, in his thirty-second year, 
Caroline on October 15, in her twenty-second 
year, and Robert on the 26th of the same month, 
in his thirty-third year. 

The testimony of Hannah Lloyd, in an ac- 
count of her husband's death which she wrote, 
a few months afterwards, to be preserved for 
their children, shows that Robert, although he 
clung fondly to life, met death courageously 
and with confidence. The description of the 
course of his illness is too sad a story, but 
this little glimpse of his character is of shining 
beauty : " He possessed a disposition of engag- 
ing simplicity ... his habits and pleasures were 
domestic, and when unclouded by nervous de- 
pression, exceedingly cheerful. Kindness and 
generosity were characteristic of his nature. 
When he entered his house, it might truly be 
said that he diffused a feeling of pleasure. You, 
my children, were accustomed to run to meet 
him with animated joy. His tasks led him to 
works of imagination and sentiment, and also 
to those of a devotional cast. Such was your 

lovely Father — to him I imparted every feeling 


of my heart ; he was uniformly the tenderest 
of friends — the sweetest companion." 

That Charles Lamb felt the death of his 
friend we know from the grave and affectionate 
tribute to his memory which he composed for 
the Gentleman's Magazine. The following letter 
from Charles Lloyd to Robert's widow gives 
the memoir in full. " Such," he wrote, " is the 
beautiful and appropriate account sent to the 
Gentleman's Magazine., by dear Charles Lamb, 
who, if I lov'd him for nothing else, I should 
now love for the affecting interest that he has 
taken in the memory of my dearest Brother 
and Friend. C. Lamb sent me the written 
copy himself: — 

" ' To dilate in many words upon the char- 
acter of R. LI. would be to violate the modest 
regard due to his memory, who, in his lifetime, 
shrunk so anxiously from every species of 
notice. His constitutional misfortune was an 
excess of nervous sensibility which, in the 
purest of hearts, produced rather too great a 
spirit of self-abasement, a perpetual apprehen- 
sion of not doing what was right. Yet beyond 
this tenderness he seemed absolutely to have 

no self-regards at all. His eye was single, and 


ever fixed upon that form of goodness which 
he worshipped wherever he found it, except in 
himself. What he was to his parents and in his 
family the newness of their sorrow may make 
it unseasonable to touch at ; his loss, alas ! was 
but one in a complication of afflictions which 
have fallen so heavy of late upon a worthy 
house. But as a Friend, the writer of this me- 
morial can witness, that what he once esteemed 
and loved, it was an unalterable law of his nature 
to continue to esteem and love. 

" * Absences of years, the discontinuance of 
correspondence, from whatever cause, for ever 
so great a length of time, made no difference. 
It seemed as if the affectionate part of his nature 
could suffer no abatement. The display of 
what the world calls shining talents would 
have been incompatible with a character like 
his ; but he oftentimes let fall, in his familiar 
conversation, and in his letters, bright and 
original illustrations of feeling which might 
have been mistaken for genius, if his own 
watchful modest spirit had not constantly in- 
terposed to recall and substitute for them some 
of the ordinary forms of observation which 

lay less out of the circle of common sympa- 


thy, within which his kind nature deHghted 
to move. 

" ' To conclude : 

Love, Sweetness, Goodness, in his countenance shin'd 
So clear, as in no face with more delight. 

But now he is gone, he has left his earthly com- 
panions ; yet his departure had this in it to 
make us less sorrowful, that it was but as a 
gentle removing of the veil, which while he 
walked upon earth, seemed scarcely to separate 
his spirit from that world of heavenly and re- 
fined essences with which it is now indissolubly 
connected.' " ^ 

" I contemplate his character," wrote Charles 
Lloyd of Robert, " as the most sweet and af- 
fecting that I ever knew." Further testimony 
came from Charles in the shape of four sonnets 
which he sent to Hannah Lloyd a few days 
after Robert's death. This is the first and 
simplest : — 

* The article appeared in the Obituary of the Gentleman' i Magazine 
— unsigned — in November, 1811. A comparison of Lamb's copy, as 
sent to Charles Lloyd, with the printed version discloses certain textual 
changes which may have been made in proof by himself, or by the 
editor. In the Gentleman s Magazine the little memoir ended at the 
words "within which his kind nature delighted to move." 


My friend, my Brother, no more shall I see 

That face affectionate, that face benign. 

Those eyes where tenderness did always shine 
Whene'er they turn'd their gentle beams on me ! 
If ever Faith, and Generosity, 

Love and benevolence almost divine 
Forgetfulness of self. Humility, 

Blest Human-nature, — Robert, they were thine ! 
Thy smile — I see it now — was kind and sweet 

As the first dawnings of a vernal morn : 
Thy warm solicitude each wish to meet 

And catch the struggling meaning e'er 'twas born. 
Ne'er shall I see again ! Who o'er thy Urn, 
Lov'd friend, like Him who lov'd thee most, should 

mourn ? 

Another brother — James — in sending Han- 
nah Lloyd a bundle of Robert's letters added 
this note : — " You will see, my dear Sister, by 
these letters written by Beloved Robert before 
you knew him that he was the dear affectionate 
and truly sincere Brother and friend as you 
have since proved him to be in the character 
of a Husband. No time can obliterate the 
sweet fragrance of his person.'" 

Robert Lloyd left four children, three girls 

and a boy named after his father. To end this 

chapter on a gayer note, it may be remarked 


that among the Lloyd correspondence is one 
letter written to the young Robert by his 
mother in 1824, when he was a schoolboy of 
twelve. " I hope [it begins] my dearest boy 
will like the cake which accompanies this." 
Then follow home news and a few maternal 
counsels, and at the end is a further reference 
to the cake : " I am extremely mortified at the 
cake being so much less than I ordered." 
Little Robert Lloyd probably was mortified 
too. His answer is concise : " It came durin 
our Easter Holidays. We were both at Gate- 
acre at the time. 3 of us eat it one day." 

13 193 


MR. Lloyd's "iliad" 


Of Mr. Lloyd's love of classics and his un- 
usual powers of memory something has already 
been said. But his interest in Greek and Latin 
did not stop at reading and repeating his favour- 
ite poems in these languages : he passed on to 
make versions of them in English. Mr. Lloyd 
was always a very busy man, yet in direct 
defiance of Cowper's sentiment — 

It is a maxim of much weight. 
Worth conning o'er and o'er. 

He who has Homer to translate. 
Had need do nothing more. — 

he turned the whole of the " Odyssey" into 
verse, a portion, if not all, of the " Iliad," and 
the Epistles of Horace. 

Mr. Lloyd's object was amusement and self- 
instruction, yet the desire for print, which al- 
most always accompanies authorship, coming 


upon him, he instructed Robert, in 1807, to 
strike off a few copies of the twenty-fourth 
book of the " IHad ;" and these were distributed 
among his friends. 

The decasyllabic couplet was the form 
adopted, and Mr. Lloyd stated in the preface 
that he had " endeavoured to keep near to 
Homer's meaning, though not so literally as 
Cowper has done in his translation, which has 
preserved much of the grandeur and simplicity 
of the original." 

In due course criticisms flowed in. 

Charles Lloyd the younger, after showing 
the version to Coleridge, sent his father the 
following message : " Coleridge told me that he 
was very much pleased indeed with thy transla- 
tion, and I have no doubt but that these were 
his undisguised sentiments, as he introduced 
the subject himself — he said that there was a 
naturalness (if one may be allowed to coin a 
word) and ease about the translation that very 
much delighted him, and much regretted that 
more perplexing avocations should interfere 
with thy ardour in the pursuit." 

That was brief and pertinent. From Anna 
Seward, however, who then stood in the same 


relation to Lichfield as Shakespeare to Strat- 
ford-on-Avon — as "Swan" — came three lengthy 
and florid communications. Mr. Lloyd seems 
to have sent her not only the printed volume, 
but also a manuscript version of the Sixth Book: 
for it is with the Sixth Book that her first and 
second letters deal. Her third bears upon the 
Twenty-fourth. The letters are inordinately 
long, but they are so splendidly pontifical that 
they are here given in full : — 

"Lichfield, Sept. 30, 1807. 

" I thank you, Sir, for having allowed me to 
peruse your translation of the 6th book of 
Homer's ' Iliad.' If our language were not 
already enriched with the noblest translation 
Europe has produced of that great Work [i.e. 
Pope's], I should expect you to finish and to 
publish yours : — but who may hope, especially 
on the same model of verse, to approach thai 
which seldom-equalled genius, never-excelled 
taste, and the most unwearied care to polish 
and correct, have combined to render perfect as 
a Poem ? 

" I know it is attacked by some of the Greek 

Scholiasts, for being in rhyme: — but thai ob- 


jection would lie against yours. They are 
angry also that Pope chose to throw a veil of 
poetic light over a great number of the original 
passages, which have the duskiness of low and 
prosaic language. 

" Cowper stood forth professing to show 
Homer as he is. What has been the result *? — 
a few of the old Bard's Idolators, who not con- 
tent with adoring his sublimity and his beauty, 
like his faults better than excellence from any 
other pen, find in Cowper's undeviating fidelity 
expiation for the extreme poetic inferiority to 
the established Translation. 

" By that vast majority of Readers, who do 
not understand the Original, Pope and Cowper's 
Version will be judged merely by the respective 
poetry which each contains. The fiat of these 
has already proved that the Painter's axiom ex- 
tends also to Poets — ' It is better to sin against 
truth than beauty !' 

" The best blank Verse is unquestionably a 

more majestic vehicle for Epic Poetry than 

rhyme. Could we see a translation of Homer, 

free and judicious as Pope's, in such verse as 

that of the * Paradise Lost,' or even as the best 

parts of the ' Task,' I should not, with all my 


long admiration of Pope's, hesitate to prefer 
the rival translation — but Cowper's Homer, 
excepting a few noble passages, is wretched 
blank verse, no grace, no flow, no harmony, 
and frequently falls into the construction of the 
rhyming couplet, and even with terminations 
which jingle on ear, like bad rhymes ; and yet 
mine is the 2nd Edition, which his letters tell us 
he had so carefully corrected, and so largely 
altered as almost to render it a new version. 
See opening of the 6th book, four immediately 
successive lines : 

With various fortune on the middle plain 
By Simois laved, and Xanthus' gulphy stream. 
First, Ajax, bulwark of the Grecians, broke 
A Trojan phalanx and illumed with i>o/)e 
The mind of all his followers, — ' 

He stole the picturesque epithet, gulphy, from 

And gulphy Xanthus foams along the field, 

^ Miss Seward was unfortunate in her edition of " Cowper." The 
passage, in Southey's edition — the first — runs thus : — 

On the champain spread 
The Xanthus and the Simois between 

First Telamonian Ajax, bulwark firm 
Of the Achaians, broke the Trojan ranks, 
And kindled for the Greeks a gleam of hope, 
Slaying the bravest of the Thracian band. 


than which a more poetic line was never 

" I am sure you will forgive the sincerity you 
have injoined when I confess, that I do not think 
it possible to transcend in rhyme Pope's trans- 
lation of Homer, nor probable that it will ever 
be equalled. The images are so bold, and strik- 
ing, the numbers so full, free, and sonorous ! 

Now Heav'n forsakes the fight : th' Immortals yield 
To human force and human skill, the field : 
Dark showers of javelins fly from foes to foes ; 
Now here, now there, the tide of combat flows ; 
While Troy's fam'd streams, that bound the deathful plain. 
On either side run purple to the main. 

Great Ajax first to conquest led the way. 
Broke the thick ranks, and turn'd the doubtful day. 

Here all is poetic strength, picture and har- 
mony. If Homer has expressed the sense 
differently he cannot have expressed it better. 
In all likelihood not near so well. A Translator 
to rise upon such an Original is poetic merit of 
the first order. 

" It has always been agreed that, for who- 
ever takes a subject which has been previously 

taken and worked upon to the full satisfaction 


of the Public in general, it is not enough that he 
should even succeed as well as his Predecessor : 
he must transcend him, or the rival attempts 
will instantly perish, neglected, and forgotten. 

" Were you not here so magnificently pre- 
occupied on the field of fame, and were to 
compleat your work, I should venture to point 
out several places where it would be necessary 
to dignify the expression : ' Between where Si- 
mois,' etc. ; ' To face about and meet the Grecian 
Foe ;' ' I go to Troy, a special Messenger^ which 
makes Hector an errand-boy. Pope says : 

One hour demands me in the Trojan Wall 
To bid our altars flame and victims fall. 

[Miss Seward continues to point out Mr. Lloyd's 
blemishes] : 

Like other young men who have dar*d my dart 
No Man can send me to the shades below 
Till my appointed time be come, to go. 
That thou art brave there's no man can deny. 

One of these prosaicisms recalls the burlesque 
song : 

But to come for to go 

For to frighten one so. 



They may be Horner^ but if so, how vast the 
Greek Poet's debt to Pope for having spread 
over them and their brethren 

That beauteous veil, of brightness made. 
At once their lustre and their shade.' 

If I could have procured time for the exami- 
nation of your MS., and for its comparison 
with the 6th book of Pope's Homer, you had 
earlier received it back. 

" Pray be so good as to remember me kindly 
to your accomplished and amiable Son when 
next you write to him, and to believe me. Sir, 
" Your obliged Friend, 

" Anna Seward." 

The accomplished and amiable son was 
Charles Lloyd the younger. 

The translator seems not unnaturally to have 
replied to the foregoing missive, and in due 
course the Oracle spoke again. This is her 
second letter : 

' Miss Seward was adapting Samuel Butler on Moonlight ('* Hudi- 
braa," part ii., canto I, 907-8) : 

Mysterious veil, of brightness made, 

Thai's both her lustre and her shade. 



"Lichfield, Nov. 25, 1807. 

"Sir, — I meant earlier to have acknowledged 
your reply to my last letter, but a series of ill- 
health, and a press of business for my pen, 
produced this involuntary procrastination. 

" The eminent Scholars whose high appro- 
bation your translation of Homer has obtained 
may well weigh with you in decided prepon- 
derance against my unscholastic opinion. By 
those who understand the Original the most 
faithful English version will be likely to be 
most esteemed, yet with fidelity to Homer 
rhymes are scarcely compatible. 

" You are sensible, however, that none who 
can drink the Homeric Song from the foun- 
tain head will do more than, from curiosity, sip 
and taste occasionally from any under current. 
They will examine a new version and compare 
particular passages both with the Original, and 
with the other translations, and probably like 
those best, which have the most scrupulous 
fidelity ; as we had rather contemplate an exact, 
tho' hard resemblance of a dear old Friend, 
than one which softens and melts down every 
defect, substituting grace and beauty for imi- 
tative precision. 


" Those who will read the work thro' and 
value it for itself, to whom Greek is a dead let- 
ter, form a prodigious majority among poetic 
Readers ; and they of that class, who have the 
keenest sensibility of poetic beauty, will never 
be induced to read an English Homer which is 
poetically inferior to Pope's. Their opinion 
will bias those who have less power of judging 
for themselves, and leave the Rivals of that 
immortal work only the barren and mortify- 
ing consciousness of wasted time and fruitless 

" Mr. Day, who was a grounded Greek 
scholar, and a fine Poet himself, always main- 
tained that Pope's Homer was, as poetry, very 
superior to its Original, by exalting all that 
there is low, animating what is tedious, and 
equalling in strength as well as beauty almost 
all the noblest passages of the old Bard ; so as 
to leave him no transcendency except what re- 
sults from the grander intonation of the Greek 
language, and from the absence of rhyme. 
Milton and Pope's numbers, however, always 
render our language sufficiently grand and har- 
monious to satisfy and to charm every ear, the 

delicacy of which is not become morbid. 


" To the admired simile with which the 
latter closes the 8th book of the ' Iliad,' I have 
considerable objection — not because it adds to, 
and extends the ideas of the Greek passage, not 
because it is finer poetry, but because it uses 
epithets too gorgeous for just delineation, and 
is therefore not faithful to Nature — ' Refulgent 
lamp of Night ;' 

Then shine the vales, the rocks in prospect rise, 
KJlood of glor^ brightens all the skies ; — 

and before these lines he says : 

Around her throne the vivid planets roll 
And stars unnumbered gild the glowing Pole. 

The vales gleam but they do not shine beneath 
the clearest moon-light ; and for the most re- 
splendent Sun-rise no expression can be found 
stronger than 2, flood of glory. 

" The original and the Translation are alike 
unfaithful to nature in representing the stellar 
fires as in full lustre when that of the moon is 
in consummate brightness. A few stars are 
then sometimes visible, but their light is dim 
and indistinct. In Milton's lunar evening he 
says the firmament glowed with living sapphires 

till the moon unveiled her peerless light, (peer- 


less by that of any Star) and threw her silver 
mantle over the dark. The lines of Pope's 
Homer which the simile introduces are exquisite 
and faultless ; the war-fires on Xanthus' brink 
illuminating his waters ; — their long-cast reflec- 
tion gleaming on the walls, and trembling on 
the spires of Troy ; — their gilding the dusky 
horrors and shooting a shady lustre over the 
fields I — if all this be not Homer, it is first-rate 
poetry. Paraphrastic license in translation gives 
it the raciness of original composition. 

" I am tempted to the egotism of inserting a 
moon-light landscape of my own from an un- 
finished Epic Poem, built in wide paraphrase 
upon Fenelon's ' Telemachus,' which in itself 
contains few poetic essentials. It forms but 
the mere outline of my attempt, which has lain 
many years unprogressive, and as yet consists 
of only 3 books : 

Soft as he ' sleeps, the now consummate moon 
Sheds lambent glories on the night's still noon. 
Where the horizon's limitary line 
Meets the gloom'd sea, and seems its last confine. 
Serene, she stands, diffusing thro' hush'd waves 
Her lunar morning in the Ocean caves ; 

' TtUmachus. 


And, as from sportive Boy, descending prone. 
Sinks in the glassy pool the heavy stone. 
Wave gains on wave, while the smooth lake divides 
Widening, in convex spheres, the lucid tides. 
So in the sky, divergent from her orb. 
The skirts of milky light the dusk absorb ; 
Flush round and round, and softly flush again. 
Kindling alike th' horizon and the main ; 
While a gemm'd path the darksome waters o'er. 
Streams from her silver circlet to the shore. 

Sleepless Calypso roves and feels the stings 
That doubtful hope to new-born passion brings ; 
She roves, what time, ascending from the Deep, 
Climbs the fair Moon the dusk ethereal steep. 
Her beams the summits of the rocks illume. 
Hills, glens, and fields steal faintly thro' the gloom ; 
Blue gleam the brooks, irriguous vales among. 
Their mists slow curling as they wind along. 
And dew-sprent meadows, more distinctly seen 
Tho' lost the floral hues and lively green 
Which drank the lustre of the gaudy day. 
Now glistening, whiten in the milder ray ; 
More light and more th' emergent landscape gains, 
Till all the scene in pale distinctness reigns. 

" I remain, Sir, your obliged Servant, 

" Anna Seward." 

Mr. Day was Thomas Day, the author of 
*' Sandford and Merton," of whom Miss Sew- 
ard wrote a short biography. 


It was then that Mr. Lloyd sent the 
Twenty-fourth Book. In April, 1808, Miss 
Seward replied, almost to the length of the 
poem : — 

" Tardy, as to my esteemed Correspondent 
this acknowledgement of his obliging present 
must appear, it is yet the earliest which, from 
a heavy press of engagements, and literary in- 
tercourse by pen, it has been in my power to 

" Whatever I may think concerning waste 
of ability in any present attempt to translate 
Homer since Cowper has shown us what he /V, 
and Pope what, as a complete Poet, he should 
have been, still I confess the exertion and the 
execution very extraordinary, and very ingen- 
ious, considering it as made in advanced life, 
and by a Gentleman whose attention and whose 
labours were, thro' his youth and middle life, 
thrown into paths widely distant from the 
classic and poetic haunts. 

" When you observe that after a first read- 
ing of Homer, abreast with his consummate 
Translator, a man of taste and genius would 

prefer the English to the Greek Poem, you say 


everything for Pope ; and when you add but 
let that same man read Homer ten times, and 
he will find Homer rise and Pope sink, it is 
in fact only that prejudice prevails over fair 
comparison. The ear becomes so seduced, so 
fascinated by the charms of a language, much 
more sonorous than our own, that the flattest 
and coarsest passages, passing thro' that har- 
monious medium, delight the beguiled fancy 
more than the purest poetry in our own less 
magnificent tongue. We all know how fond 
even the mere Editor becomes of the Author 
whose works he studies and gives to the 
World. Upon the Translator that partiality 
comes with treble force and accumulation, till, 
like the passionate Lover, he either becomes 
blind to the defects of his Idol, or fancies them 

" Pope separates the dross from the gold of 
Homer, and for the dross substitutes intrinsic 
gems. Of this Homer's Idolators complain ; 
but if these gems be of the purest^ as well as of 
the brightest lustre ; if they be pearls and dia- 
monds, and not tinsel and glass ; if they con- 
vey picture and imagery, life and motion, in 

the place of plain narrative, or perhaps unin- 


teresting mention, then surely it must be par- 
Hal taste which hkes the poetry best which is 
least poetic. Why then read it in Enghsh verse 
at all '? Why not prefer the literal prose trans- 
lation? That is the plain food. All poetry, 
which deserves its name, is certainly, to pursue 
your figure, a made dish, composed of various 
ingredients — of allegory, metaphor, simile, por- 
traiture, scenery, bold and grand thoughts and 
sentiments, hyperbole, within proper bounds, 
and all conveyed in the " high-enwoven har- 
monies" of verse, blank, or in rhyme. 

" I do not understand what is meant by 
Modern Poetry, as degradingly spoken. If the 
best of our Poets' composition since Dryden 
and Pope to the present hour, they are a Host 
in strength, beauty, and number, and have writ- 
ten in all manner of styles. For the magnifi- 
cent, we have Akenside, Thomson, Collins, Dr. 
Johnson. Mason, Gray, Chatterton, Darwin — 
and the sublime Joanna Baillie ; in the simpler 
style, Shenstone, Beattie, Cowper, Crowe, 
Bowles, Burns, Bloomfield, Walter Scott, and 
his school ; Coleridge, Southey, and their 
school. Poetry can have no nobler models 
than these supply to her various styles. Modern 
14 209 


Poetry In all ages, must, in justice, be so termed 
beneath the consideration of its greatest ex- 
amples ; not by the herd of Poetasters, who 
pour their trash from the Press, with and with- 
out rhyme, and have so poured it from Chaucer's 
day to our own. 

" 111 betide the Dealers in metre who, after 
the manner of the English Della-Cruscans, 
Merry, and his Imitators, exhibit ideas of labo- 
rious inflation, unnatural conceits, incongruous 
metaphors, and violent hyperbole, and, dressing 
them up in well-sounding numbers, called the 
trash Poetry. 

" Pope was not of that Tribe, neither any of 
his brother-Bards whom I have mentioned. 
Of him^ and of them^ it may be justly said, that 
however they may differ from each other in 
their preference of the magnificent or the plainer 
diction, their works glow with the strong light 
of Genius, such as is able to pierce the clouds 
of Time, and of contemporary jealousy, and to 
make their fame go bright'ning on its course 
to distant ages. 

" You give Pope involuntary acquittal for 
making Homer's prose poetry^ at least respect- 
ing his catalogue of the Grecian ships, when 


you say you found the impossibility of trans- 
lating it without following his example. Why 
then reflect on him for setting it ? Certainly 
his local enumeration is one of the most beauti- 
ful parts of his version. It shows what genius 
and judgment can do with the most barren 
materials. Do you blame him for ransacking 
dictionaries, as you term it, to acquire an accu- 
rate knowledge of the situation and properties 
of the places he must mention, that so truth 
might support his landscape-painting^ 

" Their mere calling over, as in Homer, must 
have made fine Bell-man's verses, truly, in Eng- 
lish ; as it is managed in Pope's Homer, the 
Reader must be an owl, if he does not see the 
Country, or City mentioned, rise before him, 
and feel himself, not only entertained, but in- 
structed concerning the situation and produce 
for which it is most remarkable. We are thus 
spared the trouble of ransacking dictionaries^ if 
we were disposed to take it. Pope was obliged 
to translate this catalogue, and since you allow 
there is no possibility of doing it in plain 
rhythm, pray pardon him that he bowed to the 
necessity of making it poetry. 

"My criticisms on your 24th Iliad would 



only waste your time and mine in fruitless 
consideration, since we should investigate on an 
entirely different principle. That which appears 
to me defect in all verse, viz. that it is not poetry^ 
appears to you a plainness which is desirable. 
I am very far indeed from considering stilted 
language, unsupported by the essentials of 
poetry, as admirable ; poverty of ideas " gaily 
tricked out in gaudy raggedness" is no reading 
for me while affluence of imagination, in the 
simplest language, charms me. No verse was 
ever more enchanting to me than Southey's 
* Madoc' Pope's Homer is not so dear. Every 
page of the former presents to me some noble 
sentiment, some vivid image, that while it 
tempts the pencil transcends its power ; some 
impassioned tenderness that sinks into the 

" In the 24th Iliad of yours one of the coup- 
lets is highly poetic. 

But when Aurora, bright with rosy dyes. 
Rose \n full glory up the vaulted skies, 

yet it seems the description of the consummate 
day rather than of that early morning, so dis- 


criminated in Pope's translation of the same 
lines : 

Soon as Aurora, daughter of the dawn. 
With rosy lustre streak' d the dewy lawn. 

Your couplet has all the harmony and the 
brilliance, but not the temporal appropriation 
of Pope's. The words streak! d and dewy mark 
the hour immediately succeeding the dawn of 
twilight. That happy precision is one of the 
principal excellencies of Pope's poetry. So is 
it of Southey's, whose style is so different from 
his. Of mere style^ so it be not coarse or mean, 
I make little point. If the poetic essentials 
exist, I am indifferent whether I meet them in 
the simple robe, which folds round a statue, 
like the dress of Southey's muse, or in the 
floating, purple, and gemm'd tiara which invests 
that of Pope. 

" Amongst his many landscapes, I know of 
only one which wants appropriation, nay abso- 
lutely violates it, and that, as I mentioned to 
you before, is his celebrated close of the 8th 
* Iliad.' 

" By its recollection I was induced to send 
you a moon-light view of mine, flattering my- 
self that it possesses that truth to nature which 


Pope's wants. You tell me you think the 
lines ' too poetic, too highly polished, which 
tends to obscure their meaning.' How de- 
scriptive poetry can be too poetic, I have no 
idea. Obscurity of meaning is certainly one 
of the worst faults verse can have. [Four lines 
of the letter are here cut away. They seem to 
have consisted of a defence of the directness 
and accuracy of the description previously 
quoted, on p. 205, of the lunar evening on the 
sea shore.] No circumstance is in my scene, 
which I had not literally beheld on the preced- 
ing night. 

" Upon reading your objections, I reex- 
amined the passage with deep attention, and 
put it to the ordeal, which I long since insti- 
tuted for the detection of ambiguous meaning 
in poetry, viz. throwing it into prose. Be it, 
however, remembered, that verbal transposition 
is an allowed poetic license, and is asserted to 
produce a fine classical effect in English poetry. 
The French language will not bear it, and 
hence its poetry never rises above the pretty ^ and 
the elegant. 

" Whoever fancies that verbal transposition 

obscures the sense in our verse, must possess 


the lynx's beam if he can discern it in the 
Greek and Latin, where that habit of style is 
perpetual and in an infinitely greater latitude 
than is ever ventured upon by our Poets, even 
by Milton, the boldest and most extensive of 
all his Brethren in the use of that privilege. I 
might have excepted Spenser ; but as I am not 
one of that Poet's indiscriminate admirers, I 
would not follow him as an example nor cite 
him as authority. 

" It appears to me that my lines are acquitted 
of the imputed obscurity by the experiment 
made upon them. I inclose it for your perusal, 
and remain. Sir, with much respect and regard 

[Signature cut away.] 

" Lichfield, April ii, 1808." 

On the following page is the paraphrase, intro- 
duced thus : — 

"A passage in Anna Seward's unpublished 
and unfinished Poem, ' Telemachus,' put into 
Prose, as a criterion whether or not the descrip- 
tion be obscure. All the verbal variations are 
synonisms, substituted to take it out of rhyme 
and measure :" — 



The moon, now consummate, sheds her lambent glories 
over the still noon of Midnight. Where the limitary- 
line of the horizon meets the gloomed sea, and appears 
its last boundary, she stands serene, diffusing thro* the 
hush'd billows her lunar morning into the caverns of the 
Deep. And, as, from sportive Boy, prone descending 
sinks into the glassy pool the ponderous stone, wave gains 
upon wave, while the lake separates, widening the lucid 
tides ' into convex spheres, so in the sky, divergent on all 
sides from her orbit, skirts of milky light absorb the sur- 
rounding darkness, flush round and round, then again 
gently flush, kindling at once the horizon and the ocean, 
while over the darksome waters, a gemmed path streams 
from her silvery circlet to the edge of the shore. 

Sleepless Calypso wanders, and feels the stings which 
doubtful hope brings to new-born passion. She wanders, 
what time, ascending from the billows, the fair Moon 
•climbs the dusky ethereal steep. Her beams illuminate 
the summits of the rocks and hills. Glens and fields steal 
faintly thro' the dusk. The brooks gleam blue amid 
irriguous vallies, their mists curling slowly as they wind 
away ; and dew-sprent meadows, yet more clearly dis- 
cerned, tho* lost the lively green, and floral tints which 
drank the light of the gaudy day, now glistening, whiten 
in the milder effulgence. More and yet more light the 
emergent landscape receives, till the whole scene reigns in 
pale distinctness. 

'" There is no obscurity or contradiction [wrote Miss Seward] in 
giving the name of tides to smooth and currentless waters, because the 
Poets have united to apply that term to water of every description — 
calm tide, glassy tide, smooth tide, &c." 


This, surely, is word-painting. One leaves 
Miss Seward with a fuller sense of Scott's em- 
barrassments as her literary executor. 

In another kind was Southey's practical and 
characteristic reply to Mr. Lloyd : — 

"Keswick, June 15, 1808. 

" I am much obliged to you, Sir, for your 
translation of the last Book of the ' Iliad.' It 
would be a highly respectable version from any 
hand, and must be considered as a very extra- 
ordinary one for one who has not been long 
practised in the art of versifying. 

" In writing verse myself I seldom or never 
elongate a word to three syllables which is 
commonly and naturally pronounced as two. 
It appears to me that any such attenuation of 
sound weakens the rhythm of the line — for in- 
stance, you have written, 

How brave he was, how generous and true : 

this line is far less sonorous than another in 
which the same word is used as a dissyllable — 

Thy form, thy countenance and generous mind. 

So also 

Pelides satiate at length with grief: 


the sound of the Hne would be strengthened if 
the word ' satisfied' were substituted. 

" On the other hand, such a word as askest 
cannot be made into a monosyllable (tho' 
certainly it is often done) without producing 
a harsh and unpleasant effect. You have 
authority enough in both cases, but the ear is 
the best and only sure criterion, and whenever 
that is disappointed of the full sound which it 
expects, or is jarred by a harsh one which it 
does not expect, unless the passage itself affords 
an especial reason for the variety, the line may 
be pronounced faulty. 

" The couplet is to me a wearying measure, 

and I have sometimes found that the terza rima 

of the Italians might with great advantage be 

used in its stead, in the translation of Homer, 

Virgil, or any of the classical narrative poets. 

Stanzas cannot be used, because they require a 

regular length of period not to be found in the 

original : the terza rima would have all the 

charm of rhyme, with the advantage of con- 

tinuousness. The common quatrain might also 

be written continuously, after the example of 

Mason, and it was the opinion of Dryden that 

this was the noblest English metre. I differ 



from him — but the opinion of Dryden on such 
a subject is a weighty one. 

" It has often been doubted whether literature 
be the worthy occupation of a man's life. I 
believe it is, and have acted accordingly. But 
it can never be doubted that it is the worthiest 
amusement of leisure, after the business of life 
is done. 

" Believe me, 

" Yours with respect, 

" Robert Southey." 

Among other persons to whom a copy of the 
translation was sent was Thomas Clarkson, the 
abolitionist, who, working with William Wil- 
berforce, found a strong ally in Mr. Lloyd. 
Clarkson differed from Miss Seward : " I have 
read your Homer," he wrote, " with much 
pleasure, liking it better than that of either Pope 
or of Cowper." 

Lamb did not see the translation until 1809, 

after Robert's visit to town ; but when it did 

reach him it interested him greatly, and he 

plunged with kindly energy into criticism. His 

first letter to Mr. Lloyd on the subject, dated 

June 1 3, 1 809, began thus : — 


" Dear Sir, — I received with great pleasure 
the mark of your remembrance which you 
were pleased to send me, the Translation from 
Homer. You desire my opinion of it. I think 
it is plainer and more to the purpose than 
Pope's, though it may want some of his 
Splendour and some of his Sound. Yet I do 
not remember in any part of his translation a 
series of more manly versification than the 
conference of Priam with Hermes in your 
translation (Lines 499 to 530), or than that 
part of the reply of Achilles to Priam, begin- 
ning with the fable of the Two Urns (in page 
24) ; or than the Story of Niobe which follows 
a little after. I do not retain enough of my 
Greek (to my shame I say it) to venture at an 
opinion of the correctness of your version. 
What I seem to miss, and what certainly every- 
body misses in Pope, is a certain savage-like 
plainness of speaking in Achilles — a sort of 
indelicacy — the heroes in Homer are not half 
civilized, they utter all the cruel, all the selfish, 
all the mean thoughts even of their nature, which 
it is the fashion of our great men to keep in. 
I cannot, in lack of Greek, point to any one 
place — but I remember the general feature as I 


read him at school. But your principles and 
turn of mind would, I have no doubt, lead you 
to civilize his phrases, and sometimes to half 
christen them." 

[Here Lamb's letter, which then comes to 
particulars, might be interrupted to quote one 
of the passages he best liked, the conference of 
Priam with Hermes : — 

The old man answer'd — " If thou truly art 

Of fierce Achilles' family a part. 

Tell me, oh tell, if noble Hector lies 

Still in the tent, depriv'd of obsequies ; 

Or has Achilles in an evil hour. 

Thrown him to dogs in piece-meal to devour ?" 

The swift-wing'd messenger replied and said, 

** Neither the vultures nor the dogs have made 

A prey of Hector's corpse, which lies yet sound 

Within the tent, neglected on the ground. 

Twelve mornings now are past since he was slain. 

But still the skin its freshness doth retain ; 

The worms, which make of warriors dead a prey. 

From this dead body have been kept away ; 

Our chief, when morning brightens up the skies. 

The noble Hector to his chariot ties. 

And drags him round his dear Patroclus' tomb ; 

But still the dead retains his youthful bloom : 

The blood all washed away, no stains appear. 

The numerous wounds are clos'd, the skin is clear ; 



Thus round thy son, the care of heaven is spread. 
It loved him living, and it guards him dead." 
These words reviv'd the aged king, who said, 
" 'Tis right that sacrifice and gifts be paid 
To the immortals, and the pious mind 
Of noble Hector ever was inclin'd 
To honour them, while here he drew his breath } 
And hence have they remember'd him in death. 
Accept for all the kindness thou hast shown. 
This golden cup, and keep it as thine own. 
And if it please thee, with the gods' consent. 
Conduct me safely to Achilles' tent." 

The letter continued] : " I have marked a few 
verbal slips, the doing of which cannot be 
called criticism, or it is as if a Reviewer being 
taken ill, his printer's Compositor or Reader 
were called to supply his place." 

Many of the suggestions that follow are too 
slight to bear reproduction ; but many, again, 
have life, and vigourous life, of their own. 
Textual criticism was an art in which Lamb 
pre-eminently shone. Thus : — " Lines 243, 
244, 245 are the flattest lines in the whole : 

But now be open, and declare thy mindy 
For I confess I feel myself inclined, 


Indeed impelPd by Jove's command to go. 
And face the man the cause of all our woe — "' 

is the cool language of a Man and his Wife 
upon ordinary occurrences over a peaceable 
fireside — not the waverings of a divinely-im- 
pelled, humanly-shrinking, Priam striving to 
bolster up his own half-doubting inspirations 
by infusing a courage which he does not feel 
into the aged partner of his throne, that she 
may give it back to him. I should not have 
exprest myself thus petulantly, if there were 
many more, or indeed any more such Lines in 
the Translation, but they stopt the current of 
my feeling in the place, and I hope you will 
pardon my expressions." 

Here are other comments referring to 
naiho^ovoLO in the line (506) 

d.v8p6q Ttaidofpovoto izori aToixa x^^P^ Spiyeffdac. 

Lamb wrote : " I don't know Homer's word, 
not having my books about me, but surely in 
English, Priam would have said the Slayer of 

' Iliad xxiv, 196-9 : 
'A^X aye fioi rdde eItce, t'i toi (ppealv elSsTat elvai ; 
a'lvug yap fi' avrdv ye fihvog kol 6vfibg avuyei 
Keld" levai eirt v^ag iau arpaTov evpvv 'Axaiuv. 


my Son^ not call'd Achilles murderer^ at such a 
time. That is rather too plain for the homely- 
speaking Homeric Heroes." Again, Mr. Lloyd 
had translated rvfijSov in the line (666) 

ivdexdrrj di ze ruji^uv in aurtu noiTjffai/xev, 

and anua in lines 799 and 801, "tumulus." 
Lamb objected : " Tumulus is too much like 
making Homer talk Latin. Tumulus is always 
spoken by an English mouth with a conscious- 
ness of scientific attainment. Priam and his Peo- 
ple were no scholars — plain downright fighting 

And of Mr. Lloyd's use of the word " min- 
strels" for Homer's aoihovq (singers), in the line 

rprjTolq iv Xs'j^eiaai diaav^ izapa S'tiaav ioidouq 

his critic said : " Minstrels, I suspect to be a 

word bringing merely English or English ballad 

feelings to the Mind. It expresses the thing 

and something more, as to say Sarpedon was a 

Gentleman, or as somebody translated Paul's 

address ' Ye men of Athens,' ' Gentlemen of 

Athens.' " 

Lamb concluded : " I am sure I ought to 


make many apologies for the freedom I have 
taken, but it will at least convince you that I 
have read the Book — which I have twice, and 
the last time with more pleasure, because more 
at leisure. I wish you Joy of an Amusement 
which I somehow seem to have done with. 
Excepting some Things for Children, I have 
scarce chimed ten couplets in the last as many 
years. Be pleased to give my most kind re- 
membrances to Mrs. Lloyd ; and please to tell 
Robert that my Sister is getting well, and I 
hope will soon be able to take pleasure in his 
affectionate Epistle. My Love also to Charles, 
when you write. 

" I am. Sir, with the greatest [the last 
few words, including signature, have been cut 

" 13 June, 09, Temple 

" Robert will have told you how pleased I 
was with your truly Horatian Epistle in the 
Gent. Mag" 

The truly Horatian Epistle was a translation 

of the first Epistle of the First Book, "To 

Maecenas," contributed by Mr. Lloyd, as part 

of a series, to the Gentletnati's Magazine for 

15 225 


March, 1 809. To his Horatian experiments we 
come, however, later. 

To the foregoing letter the translator seems 
to have replied, taking exception to some of 
his critic's remarks ; but asking him for similar 
advice in the future. Lamb's answer came 
quickly : — 

" Dear Sir, — I can only say that I shall be 
most happy to see anything that you can send 
me at any time that has reference to your newly 
taken up pursuits. I will faithfully return the 
Manuscript with such observations as a mere 
acquaintance with English, and with English 
Poetry, may suggest. I dare not dictate in 
Greek. I am Homo unius lingua — your vindi- 
cation of the Lines which I had objected to 
makes me ashamed of the unimportance of my 
remarks : they were not worth confuting. Only 
on Line 33, Page 4, I still retain my opinion 
that it should be ' were made.' 

All seem'd to wish that such attempt were made. 
Save Juno, Neptune, and the blue-ey'd maid.' 

* Mr. Lloyd had written : 

All seem'd to wish that such attempt be made, 

Sdve Juno, Neptune, and the blue-eye'd maid. 



1 am glad to see you venture made and maia 
for rhymes ' Tis true their sound is the same. 
But the mind occupied in revolving the dif- 
ferent meaning of two words so literally the 
same, is diverted from the objection which the 
mere Ear would make, and to the mind it is 
rhyme enough I had not noticed it till 
this moment of transcribing the couplet. A 
timidity of Rhyming, whether of bringing to- 
gether sounds too near, or too remote to each 
other, is a fault of the present day. The old 
English poets were richer in their diction, as 
they were less scrupulous.* I shall expect your 
MS. with curiosity 
" I am. Sir, 

" Yours with great respect, 

« C. Lamb." 

' Christopher Wordsworth thought otherwise concerning loose rhym- 
ing. In a letter to Robert Mr. Lloyd wrote : " Wordsworth thinks 
my translation of the 24th book of the • Iliad' does me credit, and is 
very faithful to the original ; but he is too nice about rhymes — he 
thinks * steal' and ' prevail' do not quite suit. I believe the Londoners 
pronounce 'steal' 'steel,' but we pronounce it 'stale' — however there 
are very few rhymes of this kind. What would he say to Pope, who 
uses * prepare' 

'ear,' &c. &c. ? 

But there is more nicety in verse now than there was 50 years ago." 


*' My kind remembrances to Robert. I shall 
soon have a little parcel to send him. I am 
very sorry to hear of the ill-health of Sophia. 

** Temple, 19 June, 09." 



MR. Lloyd's "odyssey" 
1 809-1810 

The little parcel to which Lamb referred in 
his postscript came in due course — the " Poetry 
for Children" — and with it the following note, 
which tells us that Mr. Lloyd, taking his critic 
at his word, had sent the manuscript of his 
version of the first two books of the " Odyssey" 
for Lamb's consideration. Lamb's note, which 
is undated but belongs to 1 809, ran : — 

" Dear Robert, — Make my apologies to your 

father for not returning his ' Odyssey' sooner, 

but I lent it to a friend who is a better Grecian 

than me, to make remarks on, and he has been 

so busied (he is a Doctor of Laws) that I have 

rescued the MSS. from him at last by force. 

He has written a few observations. I send you 

our poems. All mine are marked -\/ in the 

contents. The rest are Mary's, all but the 

' Beggar Man,' which is my brother's. The 


farce is not at home, but you shall have it ere 
long. — What follows is for your Father to see. 
— Mary desires her remembrances." 

Lamb then introduced his little sheaf of 
suggestions with this modest note to Mr. 
Lloyd : — 

" Dear Sir, — A friend who has kept your MS. 
unreasonably long has ventured a few remarks 
on the first Book. And I have twice read thro* 
both with care, and can only reprehend a few 
trifling expressions with my scanty knowledge 
of Greek. I thank you for the reading of them, 
and assure you they read to me beautifully 
simple and in the manner of the original as far 
as I understand it. 

" Yours truly, 

" C. L. 

" My kind respects to Mrs. Lloyd." 

A few of Lamb's emendations follow, most 
of which Mr. Lloyd adopted when he came to 

Mr. Lloyd at first had rendered (Book L line 
8) ^ovg 'E8?aoLO " Bullocks of the Sun." Thus 


Lamb : — " Oxen of the Sun, I conjure. Bul- 
locks is too Smithfield and sublunary a Word. 
Oxen of the Sun, or of Apollo, but in any 
case not Bullocks." Again, Mr. Lloyd had 
written (Book I. line 69) : — 

The Cyclops' Eye still rankles in his breast. 

Lamb remarked : " * The Cyclops' Eye still 
rankles in his Breast.' Here is an unlucky 
confusion of literal with figurative language. 
One Man's Eye rankles in another Breast. 
* Cyclops' wrongs' would do better." 

For Homer's ^atrpo^ and xn^v^ (Book L 
lines 141, 143) Mr. Lloyd offered Cook and 
Butler. " These sound," said Lamb, " too 
modern-kitchenish. One might be called an 
officer or servitor, the other a server. Milton 
speaks of these things as the office mean ' of 
sewer and seneschall.'" Perhaps sewer is too 
old. But Cook and Butler are too like mod- 
ern Establishments." 

Passing over several minor corrections, we 
come to this sound objection to Mr. Lloyd's 

» «« Paradise Lost," Book IX., 37 t — 

Marshall'd feast, 
Serv'd up in hall with sewers and seneschals. 


employment of a flagrant modernism : " Un- 
affected Grace. Is there any word in Homer 
to express affectation? I think not. Then 
certainly he has no such idea as unaffected.'' 

The " friend's" remarks, which accompany 
Lamb's, are less piquantly expressed. 

A few days later, probably on the receipt of 
a reply from Mr. Lloyd, Lamb wrote more 
fully concerning this particular translation, and 
translations of Homer in general : — 

"July 31, 1809. 
" Dear Sir, — The general impression made 
by your Translation on the mind of my friend, 
who kept your MS. so unreasonably long, as 
well as on another friend who read over a 
good part of it with me, was that it gave a 
great deal more of the sense of Homer than 
either of his two great modern Translators have 
done. In several expressions which they at 
first objected to, on turning to the Greek they 
found it completely warranted you in the use 
of them ; and they were even surprised that 
you could combine so much fidelity with so 
much of the turn of the best modern improve- 
ments in the Couplet versification. I think of 


the two, I rather prefer the Book of the Iliad 
which you sent me, for the sound of the verse ; 
but the difference of subject almost involun- 
tarily modifies verse. I find Cowper is a fav- 
ourite with nobody. His injudicious use of 
the stately slow Miltonic verse in a subject so 
very different has given a distaste. Nothing 
can be more unlike to my fancy than Homer 
and Milton. Homer is perfect prattle, tho' ex- 
quisite prattle, compared to the deep oracular 
voice of Milton. In Milton you love to stop, 
and saturate your mind with every great image 
or sentiment ; in Homer you want to go on, 
to have more of his agreeable narrative. 
Cowper delays you as much, walking over a 
Bowling Green, as the other does, travelling 
over steep Alpine heights, where the labour 
enters into and makes a part of the pleasure. 
From what I have seen, I would certainly be 
glad to hear that you continued your employ- 
ment quite through the Poem : that is, for an 
agreeable and honourable recreation to your- 
self; though I should scarce think that (Pope 
having got the ground) a translation in Pope's 
Couplet versification would ever supersede his 
to the public, however faithfuller or in some 


respects better. Pitt's Virgil is not much read, 
I believe, though nearer to the Original than 
Dryden's. Perhaps it is, that people do not 
like two Homers or Virgils — there is a sort of 
confusion in it to an English reader, who has 
not a centre of reference in the Original : when 
Tate and Brady's Psalms came out in our 
Churches, many pious people would not sub- 
stitute them in the room of David's, as they 
call'd Sternhold and Hopkins's. But if you 
write for a relaxation from other sort of occu- 
pations I can only congratulate you, Sir, on 
the noble choice, as it seems to me, which you 
have made, and express my wonder at the 
facility which you suddenly have arrived at, if 
(as I suspect) these are indeed the first speci- 
mens of this sort which you have produced. 
But I cannot help thinking that you betray a 
more practiced gait than a late beginner could 
so soon acquire. Perhaps you have only re- 
sumed, what you had formerly laid aside as in- 
terrupting more necessary avocations. 

" I need not add how happy I shall be to see 

at any time what you may please to send me. 

In particular, I should be glad to see that you 

had taken up Horace, which I think you enter 



into as much as any man that was not born in 
his days, and in the Via Longa or F/aminia, or 
near the Forum. 

" With many apologies for keeping your MS. 
so long, which my friend's engagements in busi- 
ness must excuse, 

" I remain, 

" Dear Sir, yours truly, 

" C. L. 

" My kind respects to Mrs. LL, and my 
remembrances to Robert, &c., &c." 

A few months later, early in 1810, Mr. Lloyd 
had the first seven books of the " Odyssey" 
printed as a companion to his version of the 
" Iliad." The title-page of the little book bore 
no name, but in a prefatory note it was stated 
that " This attempt to preserve in English 
rhyme, with little or no embellishment, the 
noble simplicity of the original, has engaged 
some of the leisure hours of a man of business, 
who, till near his sixtieth year, had written a 
few trifles only in verse, and this circumstance, 
he hopes, will plead in his excuse for the 
deficiencies which a critical eye will observe 
in this volume." 



A copy of the translation was speedily 
despatched to the Temple, and Lamb replied 
with a further list of suggestions and the fol- 
lowing letter : — 

" My dear Sir, — The above are all the faults 
I, who profess myself to be a mere English 
Reader, could find after a scrupulous perusal 
twice over of your neat little Book. I assure 
you it gave me great pleasure in the perusal, 
much more in this shape than in the Manu- 
script, and I should be very sorry you should 
give up the finishing of it on so poor pretence 
as your Age [sixty-two], which is not so much 
by ten years as Dryden's when he wrote his 
fables, which are his best works allowed, and 
not more than Milton's when he had scarce en- 
tered upon his original Epic Poem. You have 
done nearly a third ; persevere and let us see 
the whole. I am sure I should prize it for its 
Homeric plainness and truth above the confed- 
erate jumble of Pope, Broome and Fenton 
which goes under Pope's name, and is far in- 
ferior to his ILIAD. I have picked out what 
I think blemishes, but they are but a score of 

words (I am a mere word pecker) in six times 


as many pages. The rest all gave me pleasure, 
and most of all the Book [the Sixth] in which 
Ulysses and Nausicaa meet. You have in- 
fused a kind of biblical patriarchal manner 
into it, it reads like some story of Jacob and 
Rachel, or some of those primitive manners. 
I am ashamed to carp at words, but I did it in 
obedience to your desires, and the plain reason 
why I did not acknowledge your kind present 
sooner was that I had no criticisms of value to 
make. I shall certainly beg the opinion of my 
friend who read the two first Books on this 
enlarged Performance. But he is so very much 
engaged that I cannot at present get at him, 
and besides him I have no acquaintance that 
takes much interest in Poetry, Greek or Eng- 
lish. But I hope and adjure you to go on and 
do not make excuses of Age till you have 
completed the Odyssey, and done a great part 
of Horace besides. Then you will be entitled 
to hang up your Harp. 

" I am, dear Sir, with Love to all your 

" Your hble. Serv., 

"C. Lamb. 

*' lo Mar. 1810, E. L Ho." 


In Mr. Lloyd's translation of the Sixth 
Book, Nausicaa thus addressed her maidens : — 

Why do ye fly, my maids ? why should the sight 

Of this poor man thus fill you with affright ? 

He is not like a fierce invading foe. 

Whose savage spirits vigorously flow ; 

And we are dear to heaven — the ocean roars 

Around our happy and sequester'd shores : 

With other states no intercourse we hold ; 

But can we from this wanderer withhold 

Our friendly aid ? The stranger and the poor 

Jove sends for succour to the rich man's door; 

The smallest gift which charity imparts. 

Is like a cordial to their drooping hearts. 

Now wine and food to this poor mortal bring. 

And wash his body in the flowing spring ; 

But to some shelter'd, quiet nook repair. 

And guard his shivering limbs from chilling air. 

The passage illustrates Lamb's comment. 
Mr. Lloyd, one might say, Quakerised Homer. 

A few of Lamb's suggestions are picked 
from the list. Mr. Lloyd rendered (Book L, 
lines 163-5) : — 

Ei xeTvov y* 'I0dx7]v8e iSoiaTO voffTTJffavra, 
Ttdvreq x' Apr^aaiaT^ iXa<pp6Tspoi ToSaq elvat 
^ d-cpvetoTspoi XpuffoTo re iffOr/Toq re. 


Should he return, their feet would soon express 
How much swift feet excelled parade of dress. 

The comment was : — " ' Parade of dress' 
strikes the ear as too modern ; though in 
reality the modernest English is not more re- 
moved from Greek than the ancientest, yet the 
imagination is unwilling to receive a word in 
a Translation of Homer which has not the 
sanction of years." 

Again, Mr. Lloyd employed "whelming 
tide" as an equivalent for (Book I., line 183) 
oivoTta novrov . Said Lamb : — " ' Whelming 
tide.' A bad Epithet. We may speak of 
Vessels sunk beneath the whelming tide, but 
hardly of vessels sailing over it. It is a prop- 
erty of the sea to overwhelm, but ships riding 
over it do not naturally remind one of that 

Mr. Lloyd used "patriotic." Lamb ob- 
jected : " Patriotic strikes my ears also as too 
modern. Besides that in English few words 
of more than three syllables chime well into a 
verse ;" and a similar nicety of feeling for 
words informed his objection to the phrase 

" express his sentiments." Lamb called it 


" modern and novel phraseology. I mean the 
phrase of novels. The word sentiment was 
scarcely Anglicised before the time of Steme." 
And when " sentiment" occurred again Lamb 
wrote : " Sentiments — I would root this word 
out of a translation of Homer. It came in 
with Sterne, and was a child he had by Affec- 

In the third Book (lines 199-200) Mr. Lloyd 
rendered : — 

xai ffh, (piloi; — [idXa yap a 6p6io xaXov re fiiyav re — 
cikxtfjioq eW, 'iva Tt^ ffe xai 6(^>iy6vojv eu ef;rjj, 

And thou, my friend, of whom I augur well. 
Be brave, and strive in virtue to excel. 
That thy good deeds may live in future days. 
And be reported with deserved praise. 

Lamb remarked : — " I doubt if Homer had any 
such an idea as we have when we talk of striv- 
ing to excel in virtue. I am afraid the phrase 
is more correspondent to the Telemachus of 
Fenelon than of Homer. Orestes' revengeful 
slaughter of yEgisthus is the model to which 
Nestor directs Telemachus, something different 
from what we mean by virtue." 

The use of " exit " called forth this rebuke : — 


^^ Exit is a sad tombstone-word. It is thrice 
bad : bad as being Latin ; as being a word of 
stage-direction ; and as being inscribed on half 
the tombstones in the Kingdom." Again, 
when Mr. Lloyd wrote : — 

Envy will pine at such a happy sight 
Benevolence surveys it with delight, 

— -KoX}^ aXyea dufffievieffffiv, 
^dpfiara 5' su/xsvirrjfft ' jidXiffTa 3i t k'xXuov abroi^ 

Lamb was severe : — 

" ' Envy will pine, &c. 
Benevolence survey it with delight.' 

I should suspect these personifications are the 
Translator's. They sound ^^j/-Homeric.'* 

Finally there is this objection to the use of 
the word " uncle :" — " Uncle — rather a hazard- 
ous word ; would you call Pallas his niece '? I 
cannot conceive of such relationships as Uncles 
and Nieces and Cousins (at least the names of 
them) among the Gods." 

Among other critics of the " Odyssey," 
Catherine Hutton, the daughter of William 
Hutton, the antiquary and historian of Bir- 
i6 241 


mingham, and the neighbour of Mr. Lloyd, 
wrote with enthusiasm : — 

''Bennett's Hill, June 25 [1810]. 
" Dear Sir, — I have read your seven Books 
of the ' Odyssey' with great pleasure, and re- 
turn you my sincere thanks for the present. I 
can only repeat my astonishment that a man 
of your business, public and private, a man 
with your numerous family and family con- 
cerns, could possibly have found time to attain 
such a knowledge of Greek as was necessary 
to give us a faithful picture of Homer. As 
things are, it would be selfish to say I am sorry 
to leave Ulysses at the court of Alcinous ; but 
if you would allow us to contribute to his 
travelling expenses, I should be very happy if 
you would set him down at Ithaca. You give 
us every minuti^ and no circumlocution." 
(The end of the letter has been cut away.') 

' Here in spite of its irrelevance, might be quoted a passage from 
another of Catherine Hutton's infrequent letters to Mr. Lloyd. With 
reference to Clarkson's "History of the Quakers," a work in which 
Mr. Lloyd naturally took great interest, she wrote wittily, in 1808 : " I 
have read Clarkson through with great pleasure. Almost he per- 
suades me — not to be a Quaker, but to wish I had been born and bred 
one." For much interesting matter concerning Catherine Hutton, 

Southey expressed himself as follows : — 

"Keswick, December 14, 1810. 

" Dear Sir, — I ought long ago to have 
thanked you for your little volume. Without 
comparing the versification to Pope's in point 
of high finishing, I can truly say that I think 
it a versification of a better kind — flowing 
more naturally, less monotonous and therefore 
less wearying. Charles [Lloyd] I perceive has 
marked several passages in my copy as imper- 
fect rhymes, — I cannot consider them as blem- 
ishes; it is from the French that our critics 
have learnt to condemn them, and a com- 
parison of their theory of verse with that of 
other countries would prove that the objection 
proceeds rather from obtuseness of ear than 
from delicacy. The only thing I should ob- 
ject to in your lines is when you occasionally 
pronounce what use has made a mute syllable, 
for instance : — 

Not unobserv^</ by the noble maid. 

There is a license which of late years I have 
never allowed myself 

the reader is referred to two books by Mrs. C. H. Beale : — " Remi- 
niscences of a Gentlewoman of the Last Century," and "Catherine 
Hutton and Her Friends." 



" I hope you will find leisure to complete 
what you have begun. The Odyssey is a 
delightful poem, and the most delightful parts 
of it are yet to come. And tho' there is a 
richness and fulness in the Greek hexameter 
which no English metre can imitate (and least 
of all the couplet, which I hold to be the very 
worst possible metre for narration) yet your 
version represents Homer more faithfully than 
either Pope or Cowper : the stiffness of the 
latter is as unlike the original, as the finery of 
the former. . . . 

" Believe me, Sir, 

" Yrs. with true respect, 
" Robert Southey." 

Mr. Lloyd completed the translation of the 
"Odyssey" in 1816; but only the first seven 
books were printed. At the beginning of the 
manuscript volume which contains the transla- 
tion the date on which each of the twenty-four 
books was finished has been recorded by the 
author. The composition of the 14,591 lines 
of which they consist extended over a period 
of eight years. 



MR. Lloyd's "Horace" 

Although intent upon Homer, Mr. Lloyd 
had dallied also with Horace, and in 1812 he 
issued, for private circulation, a slender volume 
in boards : " The Epistles of Horace : Trans- 
lated into English Verse." Six of these ren- 
derings had appeared from time to time in the 
Gentleman's Magazine^ and Lamb, it will be re- 
membered, had complimented Mr. Lloyd upon 
one of them (see p. 234), and had urged him to 
continue his Horatian studies. 

Hence Mr. Lloyd's volume, when ready, was 
instantly despatched to London for Lamb's 
opinion. Lamb replied forthwith : — 

"India House, Tuesday, 8 Sep., 181 2. 

" Dear Sir, — I return you thanks for your 

little Book. I am no great Latinist, but you 

appear to me to have very happily caught the 


Horatian manner. Some of them I had seen 
before. What gave me most satisfaction has 
been the 14th Epistle (its easy and Gentleman- 
Hke beginning, particularly), and perhaps next 
to that, the Epistle to Augustus, which reads 
well even after Pope's delightful Imitation of 
it. What I think the least finish'd is the 18th 
Epistle. It is a metre which never gave me 
much pleasure.^ I like your eight syllable 
verses very much. They suit the Epistolary 
style quite as well as the ten. I am only sorry 
not to find the Satires in the same volume. I 
hope we may expect them. I proceed to find 
some few oversights, if you will indulge me, 
or what seem so to me, for I have neglected 
my Latin (and quite lost my Greek) since I 
left construing it at School. I will take them 
as I find them mark'd in order." 

But here, before turning to the textual com- 
ments, may be quoted the Epistle which best 
pleased the critic — the Fourteenth : — 

' This is the metre : — 

If rightly I know thee, thou wilt not offend, 

My Lollius, by flattery, the ears of a friend, 



Steward of my woods and self-restoring farm, 
(Despised by thee) which formerly was warm 
With five bright fires — a place of some renown. 
Which sent five Senators to Varia's town ; 
Let us contend, who is the most inclined, 
I to pluck up the thorns which choak the mind. 
Or thou the thorns which my estate molest ; 
And whether Horace or his farm thrive best. 
Lamia has lost his brother, and my grief 
For him who mourns, despairing of relief. 
Detains me here, tho' there my heart and soul 
Bear me impatient of undue controul. 
I call the country, thou the town-man blest ; 
He hates his own, who others' lots likes best : 
The place is blamed unjustly, for we find 
That change of place can never change the mind ; 
At Rome by others hurried here and there. 
Thou for the country didst prefer thy prayer; 
My steward now, thy fickle heart resorts 
Again to Rome, its bagnios, and its sports ; 
While I, consistent with myself, pursue 
One steady plan, and this thou know'st is true ; 
And when by hateful business forced to move 
To Rome, I leave with grief the farm I love : 
Our inclinations differ — hence we see 
That I and thou must ever disagree ; 
For what thou call'st a wild deserted waste. 
Exactly suits my own and others' taste. 
Who hate what thou applaudest ; — filthy stews 
And greasy taverns, suit thy low life views 


Of city happiness. — A rural scene. 

Where spices grow, not grapes, thou thinkest 

mean ; 
No tavern near which can its wine supply ; 
No dancing songsters to allure the eye 
And charm the ear ; yet, if thy tale be true. 
Thou dost not fail thy business to pursue ; 
To plough my fallows overrun with weeds. 
And strip the leaves on which my bullock feeds ; 
To watch the river when the showers descend. 
And currents rippling thro' the fields to tend. 
Come now; I'll tell thee why we disagree ; 
Fine clothes and hair perfumed delighted me. 
Rapacious Cynara I once could please 
Without a fee, with pleasantry and ease ; 
In rich Falernian wine I took delight. 
And often sat till very late at night ; 
Now I eat little and but little drink, 
I sleep delighted near the river's brink. 
On the soft grass. — I can't recall the past. 
But I should blush, did youthful follies last. 
Safe in the country, there no envious spy 
Views my possessions with a jaundiced eye ; 
No biting slander and no secret hate 
Approach the confines of my small estate ; 
The clods and stones I carry from my ground. 
My neighbours see me, and the smile goes round. 
To sit with slaves is thy delight and pride. 
At a large city table well supplied ; 
With them thou wishest thy abode to fix. 
And in their meals and merriment to mix; 


While my more active footboy longs to change 

Places with thee, and o'er my fields to range ; 

The flocks, the garden, and the wood heap'd fire. 

Despised by thee, excite his fond desire ; 

The lazy ox, the horse's trappings saw 

With longing eye — the horse the plough would draw ; 

But as in difil:rent stations they excel. 

Each cheerfully should act his own part well. 

The first of Lamb's criticisms refers to a 
passage in the Sixth Epistle (Book I.) " To 
Numicus :" — 

Virtutem verba putas et 
Lucum ligna? 

which Mr. Lloyd had rendered thus : — 

Think'st thou that virtue is composed of words. 
As some men think a grove composed of boards ? 

Lamb objected : — " I do not quite like render- 
ing ligna, boards. I take the passage to allude 
to the religious character of their groves, and 
that Horace means to say, If you are one who 
think virtue to be mere words, and account 
no more of a grove (that is, of a consecrated 
place) than of so much timber. — As I should 

say, if you look upon a Church as only so 


much brick and mortar, i.e. divested of its 
sacred character. I don't know if I am right 
— but boards sound awkward to me : timber I 
think should be the word. Timber is a word 
we apply to wood dead or alive. Boards only 
to the dead wood." 

The next reference is to the Seventh Epistle 
(Book I.) " To Maecenas." Mr. Lloyd had 
converted Horace's 

Dum pueris omnis pater et matercula pallet, 
Officiosaque sedulitas et opella forensis 
Adducit febres et testamenta resignat 


Now fathers and mothers are pale for their boys. 
And the forum's engagements, its bustle and noise. 
And officious attention, together combine 
To bring fevers, which cause us our wills to resign. 

Lamb wrote : — " Our wills to resign is literally 

the rendering of testamenta resignare — and 

would it not also as aptly apply to voluntates 

deponere? The resignation of the will in an 

hour of sickness gives one a Christian idea. 

At all events, resign should have been written 

re-sign, which would have precluded the 




Again, Mr. Lloyd thus opened the Epistle 
to Aristius Fuscus (Book I., lo) : — 

We who a country life enjoy. 
Whom rural pleasures never cloy. 
Wish health and peace may always crown 
Our Fuscus, who prefers the town ; 
For tho' in this we disagree. 
We feel like twins a sympathy 
In other things ; — what one refuses. 
The other does, and so he chooses ; 
Of the old Dove thou keep'st the nest 
While I (and think myself more blest) 
Extol the scenes which nature yields. 
Rivers which flow thro' verdant fields, 

and so on. Lamb commented : — " ' Of the old 

dove thou keep'st the nest.' Turning to the 

original, I find it ' vetuli notique columbi. Tu 

nidum servas, ego,' &c., which I have always 

translated a pair of old and well acquainted 

Doves, one of us (you) keep to your nest, the 

other (I) praise the Country. I have always 

taken columbi to be plural and to refer to Tu 

et ego. Referring to Creech, I find he translates 

it as I would." 

In translating " Libertino natum patre" in the 

Epistle "To His Book" (Book I., 20), Mr. 


Lloyd had written " From a father libertine de- 
scended." Lamb demurred to this : — " I don't 
know whether libertine in our unhappy perver- 
sion of the meaning would be any great compli- 
ment to the memory of a parent. In English 
it always means a person of loose morals, 
though by transposing the order of the words 
you have perhaps obviated the objection. A 
libertine father would have shock'd the ear. 
The transposition leads us to the Latin mean- 
ing, by making us pause a little. I believe 
this is a foolish objection." Horace's own 
meaning for the word was, of course, a 
" freed man." 

Lamb continued : — " You have two or three 
times translated ' solennis' by ' solemn.' Has 
not the English word acquired a gravity and 
religion, which the Latin did not intend?" 
Lamb then cited two instances. One was in 
the Epistle "To Maecenas" (Book L, i), where 
the translator rendered " Insanire putas solemnia 
me," " Thou think'st me then quite solemnly 
unsound." Lamb commented thus* — '"Sol- 
emnly unsound' — does ' solemnia insanire' mean 
anything more than to be mad with leave of 

custom — to be orderly or warrantably mad*?" 


The other instance was in the Epistle " To 
Augustus" (Book II., i), where 

Romas dulce diu fuit et soUemne reclusa 
Mane domo vigilare 


'Twas long a custom sanctioned at Rome, 
To spend the morning solemnly at home. 

Lamb remarked : — " ' To spend the morning 
solemnly at home.' Does ' solenne fuit' mean 
anything more than that it was customary or 
habitual with them to stay at home? Our 
solemn is applied only directly to forms of relig- 
ious or grave occasions, as a solemn hymn or 
funeral; and indirectly or ironically to grave 
stupid people — as a solemn coxcomb — which 
latter I am afraid you will think me for being 
so verbose on a trifling objection." 

One other correction. Mr. Lloyd, in the 
same Epistle, had rendered " socco" " buskins." 
Lamb pointed out : — " It should have been 
rendered by the word sock^ which refers to 
Comedy. The Cothurnus or Buskin was the 
high-rais'd shoe of the tragic actor." 

The letter concluded : — " Let me only add 


that I hope you will continue an employment 
which must have been so delightful to you. 
That it may have the power of stealing you 
occasionally from some sad thoughts is my 
fervent wish and hope. Pray, Dear Sir, give 
my kindest remembrances to Mrs. Lloyd, and 
to Plumstead — I am afraid I can add no more 
who are likely to remember me. Charles and I 
sometimes correspond. He is a letter in my 
debt." (The remainder of the letter is torn 

Two other letters referring to the " Horace" 
are worthy of quotation. This, from Catherine 
Hutton, is terse and sensible : — • 

Bennett's Hill, Nov. io [1812]. 

" Dear Sir, — I beg you will accept my sin- 
cere thanks for your book. I own I felt disap- 
pointed that it was not Homer ; but I am now 
glad it is Horace. I have read it to my Father, 
who is much pleased with it, and says he owes 
his first acquaintance with Horace to you. 
He repeated the saying of Voltaire with regard 
to Hudibras, ' There are more thoughts than 



" If a man chooses to make a paraphrase, let 
him ; only I would not choose to read it : for I 
do not think a story or a subject improved by 
being wire-drawn. But if he professes to make 
a translation, it seems to me that he should 
keep as close to his author as possible. He 
who does this, and in a pleasing manner, is the 
best translator. 

" Your Horace gives me an exact idea of 
the manners of the Romans. 
" I am, dear Sir, 

" Your very obliged, 

" Catherine Hutton." 

The other letter is from Southey, and thereby 
hangs a tale. In the spring of 1809 Charles 
Lloyd the younger, who had been supplied with 
manuscript copies of his father's translations to 
show to his friends the Lake poets, wrote thus 
from Old Brathay : — 

" I have not shown these translations to my 
friends, for the omission of which in each par- 
ticular case I have a separate reason to give. 
Both Coleridge, Wordsworth, and Southey pro- 
fess to admire thy translation of Homer very 
much, and often voluntarily introduce the sub- 


ject in order to express their commendations — 
but, as a reason for my omitting to obey thy 
injunction which applies equally to all three, I 
must inform thee that I know they have next 
to a contempt for Horace : and the best trans- 
lations that could possibly be conceived of his 
verses would not, I believe, give them any 
pleasure. Now I will give the reason for my 
omission, which applies to each of these per- 
sonages distinctly. Wordsworth is so much 
occupied with political subjects just now, and 
with a pamphlet which he has in the press on 
the Portuguese Convention, &c., that I am sure 
it would be impossible to draw his attention to 
any other subject — besides, even at best he is 
proverbially indifferent to the literary efforts of 
others. Coleridge is so miserable in mind and 
body that he pays no attention to the most 
urgent [of his] own affairs. It is true I did 
me[ntion these] translations of thine to him, 
and [asked him] to look at them when he had 
[ar-] ranged the publication of The Fri[end. 
But] The Friend is now as far from being 
arranged as it was 6 months ago. In fact he 
attends to nothing but dreamy reading and still 

more dreamy feelings. This I would not upon 


any account have communicated out of the 
family. Southey has such an invincible dislike 
to Horace that I would not show a translation 
by Pope himself of that author to him. . . . 
In spite of what I have now urged, if I have a 
convenient opening, I will put thy translations 
into the hands of my friends — but poets, I 
fancy, ever were, and ever will be an intractable 
race. — If thou hadst any more of Homer to 
send me I would put that into their hands with 

The foregoing remarks apply to the manu- 
script versions. When printed, a copy of 
the Horace was, none the less, despatched to 
Southey by the undaunted translator ; and this 
was Southey's diplomatic acknowledgment : — 

Keswick, April ii, 1813. 

" My dear Sir, — I received yesterday from 
Old Brathay, your Epistles of Horace, and am 
much obliged to you for the book. You have 
attempted a task of great difficulty, and you 
have performed it respectably everywhere, and 
in some parts with singular success. 
17 257 


" Charles writes to me in healthy spirits. I 
am glad to find that he has amused himself 
with ' Alfieri,' an occupation which I suggested 
to him last year. If he completes the trans- 
lation (as seems likely) it will be an acquisition 
to our literature, and may at least be expected 
to repay him with credit. I hope we shall soon 
see him here, now that we are enjoying long 
evenings and fine weather. 

" Believe me, my dear Sir [the signature has 
been cut away]." 

And here, save for one other slight experi- 
ment to be mentioned later, we leave Mr. 
Lloyd as translator. 





Of Charles Lloyd's life at Old Brathay the 
records are meagre. He spent the years in al- 
ternations of light and shadow, the light never 
very radiant, the shadow gloomy beyond de- 
scription. As he grew older, his fits of melan- 
choly depression became increasingly serious, 
and, as Dr. Garnett points out in the " Diction- 
ary of National Biography," bore a curious 
likeness to those which afflicted Cowper. 

But during his serene, or less troubled periods, 
Lloyd's conditions had little resemblance to 
those of the recluse of Olney. His house was 
noisy with children, to whom he seems to have 
been a loving and solicitous parent ; his wife 
was ever at his side ; members of his family 
continually paid him visits, and in the neigh- 
bourhood he had many friends. 

Lloyd's tastes were simple. Walking, with 


long pauses for the contemplation of scenery, 
gardening, reading, and conversation at high 
pressure — these were his favourite beguile ments. 
According to De Quincey, Lloyd's house was 
at one time a centre of gaiety. Many dinner 
parties were given, at which Lloyd was an ad- 
mirable host, and there were even dances, in 
which, though he took no part, he found much 
pleasure. The Old Brathay cottage numbered 
among its visitors the Wordsworths, the Cole- 
ridges, the Southeys, " Christopher North" and 
Miss Penny (afterwards his wife). Dr. Watson, 
the Bishop of LlandafF, Miss Watson, his 
daughter, with whom Charles Lloyd corre- 
sponded in French, and De Ouincey. 

It is to the account of Lloyd which forms a 
chapter in De Quincey's " Autobiography" that 
we are indebted for much that is known of 
him at this time. De Quincey, it is true, is not 
always to be relied upon, but we must take 
what we can. He wrote thus of Lloyd's ap- 
pearance : — " He was tall and somewhat clumsy 
— not intellectual so much as benign and con- 
ciliatory in his expression of face. His features 
were not striking, but they expressed great 

goodness of heart ; and latterly wore a depre- 

CHARLES LLOYD (177a-Ls;i9) 
By John Constable, R.A. 

From (I pii'linr in Ihc poKscssion of C. A. Uoijd, Esq. 


catory expression that was peculiarly touching 
to those who knew its cause." 

Of Lloyd's conversational powers De Quincey 
left this record : — " It was really a delightful 
luxury to hear him giving free scope to his 
powers for investigating subtle combinations 
of character ; for distinguishing all the shades 
and affinities of some presiding qualities, dis- 
entangling, their intricacies, and balancing, 
antithetically, one combination of qualities 
against another. But," added the historian, 
" let but one person enter the room of whose 
sympathy he did not feel secure, and his powers 
forsook him as suddenly as the buoyancy of a 
bird that has received a mortal shot in its wing. 
Accordingly, it is a fact that neither Words- 
worth nor Coleridge ever suspected the amount 
of power which was latent in Lloyd ; for he 
firmly believed that both of them despised him. 
Mrs. Lloyd thought the same thing." ' 

Whether or not Coleridge and Wordsworth 
entertained that feeling for Lloyd cannot be said. 
We know at any rate that some years before 

' Mrs. Lloyd, whom De Quincey admired and respected — she was 
"unsurpassed," he declared, "as wife and mother" — reminded him 
in appearance of Mrs. Jordan, the actress. 


Coleridge had believed Lloyd to possess genius. 
Hypersensitive natures are apt to misconstrue, 
and Lloyd may have magnified into contempt 
the antipathy which the two poets would natu- 
rally feel for a morbid mind. Be that as it may, 
both men were occasionally in his society. 

On the other hand the younger Coleridges 
would seem positively to have courted it. " I 
remember," wrote Hartley Coleridge among his 
reminiscences, " dear Charles Lloyd reading 
Pope's ' Translation of Statins' in the little 
drawing-room at Old Brathay. The room, the 
furniture, the little 1 2^0 Pope, are all before me. 
He highly commended the following lines : — 

Yet who, before, more popularly bow'd ? 
Who more propitious to the suppliant crowd ? 
Patient of right, familiar in the throne. 
What wonder then ? He was not then alone. 

Lloyd appreciated Pope as rightly as any 
man I ever knew, which I ascribe partly to his 
intelligent enjoyment of French writers, tem- 
pered as it was with reverent admiration of the 
greater English." And Derwent Coleridge, in 
his memoir of his brother Hartley, says of their 
earlier life : " We were lodged at Clappersgate, 

a small hamlet beautifully situated at the dis- 


tance of a mile from the town, this place having 
been selected on account of its neamess to Old 
Brathay, the residence of my father's literary 
friend Charles Lloyd. . . . His sons, four noble 
lads, were our schoolfellows, and their admir- 
able mother, had we needed it, would have been 
a mother to us." 

In Lloyd's Old Brathay letters to his brother 
Robert, there are interesting passages concerning 
Samuel Taylor Coleridge. Here is one from a 
letter at the end of 1 808 : — 

" Coleridge has made us several visits lately. 
We are very much interested with his society — 
indeed I can set no bounds to my astonishment 
at his talents. Coleridge is talking of publish- 
ing a weekly paper which he calls The Friend 
— it is to resemble in its plan the Spectator, 
Guardian, &c. — The prospectus of the work is 
now printing at Kendal. — It is to treat of sub- 
jects moral, and in connection with taste and 
general literature — and indeed it is to extend to 
all topics except those of politics and religion. 
— If the work comes out he would be much 
obliged to you to promote its sale by procuring 
subscriptions for him — when the prospectus is 

printed I will send you some copies. 


" I have translated about half of Ovid's 
' Metamorphoses,' and there I remain : the ap- 
petite for this employment has not seized me 
lately — and if I have not an appetite to begin 
with I never succeed." (He did not complete 
the task.) 

In the following January, 1809, Coleridge 
spent a few days with the Lloyds at Old Brathay. 
Fortunately Agatha Lloyd, Charles's sister, was 
a guest at the same time, and hence the follow- 
ing description in a letter to Robert's wife : — 

" Coleridge has been our guest since sixth 
day ; he intends going to Grasmere to-day. 
He is too interesting a man to live comfortably 
with a long time — he has very strong affec- 
tions, but in his domestic habits I do not 
wonder at his being a very trying husband, 
unless his wife could be so entirely absorbed in 
his mind as not to think of the inconvenience 
of being put out of her way in every day oc- 
currences, which after all make up the great 
sum of our lives ; and I believe little inatten- 
tions of that sort are and must be felt. He is 
truly a wonderful man — his powers of conver- 
sation and the richness and extent of his mind 

are indeed extraordinary, and I only wish, by a 


little more attention to system than to impulse^ 
he were more calculated to shine as a domestic 
character. He has two interesting boys for 
whom he has a most fatherly affection. Hart- 
ley is a child to me ■painfully out of the com- 
mon way both in mind and constitution — 
should he live, poor fellow, he will be a most 
interesting character, and I wish, as related his 
parents^ he were in more happy circumstances. 
I have been going on without appearing to con- 
sider thee, but thou must excuse me. Southey 
was here for an hour on sixth day, and Words- 
worth called ; so the three northern poets were 
all here that day. This seems the land of 
genius, but I shall be very well contented to 
leave the genii of the mountains for my dear 
friends at home, who after all are my only true 
friends. — I feel confident of this, and wish more 
and more to cherish a disposition to love and 
be loved by my own fireside, amongst those of 
my own family." ^ 

« It was Agatha Lloyd (1791-1838), the writer of this letter, who 
transmitted the poetical instinct of the family. By her marriage with 
James Pearson she had several children. Among them was Mary 
Caroline, who married Robert Benson Dockray. One of their daugh- 
ters, Mary, married the Rev. Frederick Binyon, and became the 
mother of Mr. Laurence Binyon, the author of " A Book of London 


On February 7, 1 809, Charles wrote : — " We 
see nothing of Coleridge at present, in conse- 
quence of several individuals of Wordsworth's 
family not having had the measles ; but I re- 
ceived a line from him the day before yester- 
day, written on Saturday. Of ' The Friend' he 
writes as follows : ' Wordsworth and myself 
went to Kendal on Tuesday last to propose to 
Pennington (the bookseller there) the printing 
and publishing of ' The Friend,' stamped, &c., 
as a newspaper, but we could settle nothing.' 
He went to Kendal on Sunday a second time, 
on the same business." 

The following remarks on Coleridge, called 
forth by the first number of ' The Friend,' are 
interesting. They occur in a letter from 
Charles to Robert, dated June 1 2, 1 809 : — 

" I shall be much obliged to you for the 
Beaumont and Fletcher and Massinger on the 
terms you mention — also for Lamb's specimens 
of ancient dramatic writers and Mrs. Leicester's 
School. We have the tales from Shakspeare. 
I certainly think the first number of ' The 

Visions," and " Porphyrion, and other Poems;" another, Agatha 

Sophia, married the Rev. Stephen Phillips, and became the mother of 

Mr. Stephen Phillips, the author of " Christ in Hades," and " Poems." 



Friend' abstruse and laboured in the style — it 
is evidently written with great difficulty. I 
cannot say that I am more pleased with the 
second. Coleridge has such a lamentable want 
of voluntary power. If he is excited by a 
remark in company, he will pour forth, in an 
evening, without the least apparent effort, what 
would furnish matter for a hundred essays — 
but the moment that he is to write — not from 
present impulse but from preordained delibera- 
tion — his powers fail him ; and I believe that 
there are times when he could not pen the com- 
monest notes. He is one of those minds who, 
except in inspired moods, can do nothing — and 
his inspirations are all oral, and not scriptural. 
And when he is inspired he surpasses, in my 
opinion, all that could be thought or imagined 
of a human being. . . . But I have more 
fears than hopes about this publication." 

Here, from another letter, is a hint of Lloyd's 
taste in literature at that time : — " When my 
Mother comes I should be glad to have Rollin, 
Barrow, and Marcus Antoninus sent, also the 
plate of my arms, and the half-boots which are 
to wear with the pantaloons and the ordering 

of which I leave entirely to you ; order for 


me what you would order for yourself, only let 
the boots be made rather stronger than your 
town beaux would choose to wear. I shall 
also thank you to send the inhaler. Please to 
put these things under the care of Caroline in 
preference to that of my Mother, who, though 
quite disposed to perform an act of kindness, is 
most philosophically indifferent to the common 
affairs of life." Lloyd added, as if in proof 
that such indifference was not also his : — " If 
Hessian boots would do to wear with panta- 
loons, or small clothes indiscriminately, I should 
prefer them — but not without." 

The rest of the letter, and one or two that 
followed it, dealt with " Isabel," a novel written 
by Charles Lloyd some years previously, and 
now being revised and transcribed for the bene- 
fit of Miss Watson. " There is," he wrote, 
*'an accurate delineation of passion in it, but 
the story is incurably defective." " Isabel" was 
a piece of Rousseauism, the product of an un- 
healthy mind. After toying with its revision 
for some months the author had a few copies 
printed for private distribution ; but almost im- 
mediately afterwards, in accordance, presumably, 

with the strongly-expressed views of his father, 


he ordered its suppression. In the letter con- 
taining the instructions for this suppression is a 
passage of arms between the two brothers. 
Robert seems to have disapproved with some 
vigour of the " accurate deUneation of passion" ; 
Charles replied : — 

" I cannot agree with you that ' Isabel' is a 
dangerous book. The proper answer to the 
following query of yours, ' Why should minds 
who feel the tyranny of love be, by any coinci- 
dence, confirmed that it can only be released 
from its thraldom by death T arises from what 
I have said in the preface on the nature of the 
passions — viz., taking for granted, that even in 
their most perilous degree Ihey must exist in some 
characters, it is better to provide intellectual as- 
sociations for them even in this perilous degree. 
An Isabel would no more die of love than she 
otherwise would,, because she had somewhere 
read in a novel of a heroine that died of Love. 
We are governed by the law of our own nature, 
and not by the law which we read of in others 
— and the law of another mind no further 
affects mine than as far as it coincides with 
mine — therefore if the law of my mind be 

death from Love, I shall die whether I read 


books that inculcate the omnipotence of love 
or not ; if the law of my mind be not death 
from Love, I shall not die tho' I read of Paphian 
victims from morning till night. Farewell ! 
my dear Robert, I hope that when this arrives 
you will not be immersed in the ' quagmire of 
morbidity.' I was very much amused by the 
phrase, and think that there is a considerable 
Hudibrastic felicity in it." 

The year of the letter just quoted was 1811, 
when another season of affliction was imminent. 
The following passage, written to Robert a 
month or so after, contains a piece of searching 
self-revelation : — 

" I often wish that I had some one entirely 
sympathizing friend, but this is a chimerical 
wish ; a person to feel entire sympathy with 
one must have suffered as much, and, in the 
way that I have done, and then he would be 
as full of his sufferings as I am of mine, and 
therefore rather calculated to wish to act upon 
another than to be acted upon himself: added 
to this that I doubt whether, all things con- 
sidered, morbid persons are edifying com- 
panions for each other. I fully believe that 

the secret why persons of extreme sensibility 


seldom or never agree long together is, that 
there are few of that temperament, perhaps 
none, such is the constitution of the world, 
that do not suffer very much — and, as I said 
before, they rather want to impress than to be 
impressed. Now they cannot excite an entire 
sympathy except where they meet with a sen- 
sibility equals and an experience similar^ to their 
own ; but here in all probability, tho' the charm 
will be great at first, the want on both sides will 
be alike, i.e.^ an impatience to act upon rather 
than be acted upon, and these fine minds will 
quarrel very vulgarly. Such is in my opinion 
the sketch of the history of almost all senti- 
mental friendships, especially when they are 
founded on the wish, selfish at bottom, rather 
to pour out your own feelings than to be im- 
pressed by the feelings of others. Indeed, in 
almost all people of sensibility, I believe that 
there is an impatience and an irritation when 
they are long acted upon. What must be then 
their fate *? Why, they must live in constant 
irritation, or they must sit down content with 
the joyless gloom of unparticipated feeling — 
except indeed they have religion, which seems 

to me the grand panacea for minds of this cast." 


Only a man gifted in no common degree with 
introspection could have written that. Such a 
passage justifies Talfourd's opinion of Charles 
Lloyd : " His mind was chiefly remarkable for 
a fine power of analysis. In this power of dis- 
criminating and distinguishing, carried almost 
to a pitch of painfulness, Lloyd has scarcely 
been equalled. At a time when," Talfourd 
added, " like Cowper, he believed himself the 
especial subject of Divine wrath, he could bear 
his part in the most subtle disquisitidhs on 
questions of religion, morals, and poetry, with 
the nicest accuracy of perception and the most 
exemplary candour." 

Among other admirers of Charles Lloyd's 
swift and sure vision in metaphysical questions 
was Shelley. During a visit to the Lakes, 
Shelley borrowed, through Southey, Lloyd's 
copy of Berkeley's works. " I remember," he 
wrote to Leigh Hunt in 1819, " observing some 
pencil notes in it, probably written by Lloyd, 
which I thought particularly acute. One es- 
pecially struck me as being the assertion of a 
doctrine of which even then I had long been 
persuaded, and on which I had founded much 

of my persuasions as regarded the imagined 


cause of the universe — ' Mind cannot create, 
it can only perceive.' " Shelley refers particu- 
larly to the " Three Dialogues between Hylas 
and Philonous in opposition to Sceptics and 
Atheists." ' 

In October, 1811, came Robert's sudden 
death, a blow which fell on Charles Lloyd with 
grievous force. In losing this brother, he lost 
the one relative to whom he could unburden 
his mind without hesitation. Henceforward, 
for several years, he was in the clutch of despair, 
with only occasional periods of alleviation, part 
of which he employed in the somewhat gloomy 
task, of translating the tragedies of Alfieri.'' His 

* The book in question (the two-volume edition of 1784) is now in 
the possession of Mr. C. A. Lloyd. 

' A translation of Alfieri was naturally not much to the taste of 
Charles Lloyd's family. No record of Mr. Lloyd's opinion has come 
down, but Priscilla Wordsworth, writing to Robert's wife a few days 
before Waterloo, thus expressed her feelings : — 

*• What an eventful period this is ! I never felt so depressed by the 
outward state of things as at this moment. The external face of the 
world seems to me full of discouragement. Have you read W.'s 
" Excursion" ? I hope you have. It is a noble work — and cannot, I 
think, be read without profit. I am sorry that I cannot either like or 
approve Alfieri. The stories are so atrocious, as rather to disgust than 
to excite sympathy — and the style is so inharmonious as by no means 
to add to its attractions. I much regret that Charles should have 
made choice of so unprepossessing an Author. Sir G. Beaumont — 
18 273 


version, in three volumes, was published in 1815, 
just before his condition reached its first climax 
of gravity. 

The year 1815 brought more grief to the 
Lloyd family ; for Charles's affliction was fol- 
lowed by the death of Priscilla Wordsworth, 
in October, at the age of only thirty-three. She 
left three children. Well might Lamb write 
to Miss Hutchinson, William Wordsworth's 
sister-in-law : " Poor C. Lloyd and poor Pris- 
cilla I" 

who paid us a visit a few days ago — was at Rome when Alfieri acted 
his own Tragedies. He spoke of them as pedantic, and uninteresting. 
He observed that he saw him act, on the very days on which, accord- 
ing to Alfieri's dates, some of his plays were written." 




In 1818, however, came an unmistakable re- 
newal of intellectual clearness and activity, and 
with it Charles Lloyd's removal to London and 
his re-entry into that literary life for which he 
had once so longed. Mrs. Lloyd and his chil- 
dren did not follow him thither until later. 

Our first glimpse of him is in Macready's 
" Reminiscences." In the spring of 1818, when 
Macready was playing "Rob Roy McGregor; 
or, Auld Lang Syne" at Covent Garden, he re- 
ceived one morning an unsigned letter and a 
sonnet, the writer of which set forth that the 
actor's performance as the Highlander on the 
previous night had caused the first gush of tears 
— and consequent relief of mental tension — 
that had come to him for years. Macready 
had at the time no clue to the identity of the 
sufferer whom he had thus been the means of 
assisting, but a year or so after came to him a 


presentation volume of poetry, in which the 
sonnets figured, and he then learned that Charles 
Lloyd was the author. 

A friendship [wrote Macready] which lasted through 
his life, speedily grew out of the acquaintance which this 
compliment induced. I was a frequent visitor at his lodg- 
ings, spending many evenings in delightful intercourse 
with him and his most amiable and accomplished wife. 
Under his roof I first became acquainted with Lamb, and 
that sister to whom his brotherly devotion made his life 
one course of self-denying heroism. She was most intel- 
ligent and gentle in manners. Here, too, took place my 
introduction to Talfourd, who has so eloquently told the 
story of their woes. It was from Lloyd himself that I 
received the melancholy account of his suiFerings. For 
upwards of four years he had been afflicted with a most 
extraordinary malady, a torpor of feeling, and, as it were, 
a numbness of his faculties, that all the medical advice to 
which he had resorted had been unable to relax or to dis- 
pel. He was impenetrable to the efforts of skill or the 
blandishments of affection. All intellectual pursuits had 
been discontinued, and, as his sonnet intimates, life itself 
had become wearisome. By some inexplicable chance he 
strayed one night, he scarce knew why, into the pit of 
Covent Garden Theatre, where the drama of *' Rob Roy" 
was being acted. He became absorbed in the interest of 
Scott's romantic story, and, in the scene where the out- 
lawed chief dashes away the tears from his eyes, poor 
Lloyd felt his own fast trickling down his cheeks. The 


rock was struck, and the gushing stream was a new spring 
of life to him. So he felt it, and testified to me, as the 
instrument of his restoration, the most affectionate regard. 

Thus relieved and re-invigorated, Charles 
Lloyd had plunged into literary labours. From 
London he addressed to Hannah Lloyd, Rob- 
ert's widow, in whom he found a vein of sym- 
pathy kindred to that which marked Robert as 
his most congenial correspondent, several letters 
which enable us to follow his actions and 
thoughts with some closeness. Here are in- 
teresting passages from a long communication, 
dated July 28, 1819, in which, presumably 
with the intention of preparing a new volume 
for the press, he asked for copies of certain 
sonnets that, from time to time, he had sent to 
Hannah : — 

" The constant succession of artificial im- 
pressions, particularly that portion of them 
which is addressed to the sense of hearing, 
peculiar to a residence in London, produces all 
the effect which I anticipated. Elsewhere I felt 
literally alone in the world. Here I feel alone 
as respects individual sympathy, but on all sides 
a wall, a fortification of life, and human life, 

seems to surround and protect me. Before I 


came here, it was a phenomenon if I were em- 
ployed ; and a still greater one if I were interested 
in that employment. Here I am always doing 
something, and the perpetual noise that I hear 
from every quarter ; the perpetual, involuntary, 
and unsought-for remindings of life with which, 
on every side, the surrounding atmosphere is 
impregnated, keep up an external counterpoise 
to the restless agony ever busy within : and 
tho' I must know that, in a religious sense, I 
am no more protected here than I should be 
among the Lybian deserts, since God is ever 

ever felt. 
In the void waste, as in the city full. 
And where He vital reigns, there must be joy.^ 

yet the insensible influence of this " hum" and 
bustle " of man" is considerable, and, as far as 

' From the Hymn at the end of Thomson's "Seasons' 
should fate command me to the farthest verge 
Of the green earth, to distant barbarous climes, 
Rivers unknown to song ; where first the sun 
Gilds Indian mountains, or his setting beam 
Flames on th' Atlantic isles; 'tis nought to mej 
Since God is ever present, ever felt. 
In the void waste, as in the city full ; 
And where He vital breathes, there must be joy. 


it goes, operates in the most soothing, and 
alleviating manner. I would not surrender the 
mere effects of the noise of London for any 
consideration in life : and what is most extra- 
ordinary is, though it has had no effect towards 
producing the least change in my ideas, and 
impressions with regard to my ultimate and 
final destination, yet it holds such an ascend- 
ency over my momently sensations, that it has 
enabled me for the last ten weeks to change 
almost uninterrupted sleeplessness at nights for a 
repose during the nocturnal hours as uninter- 
rupted. . . . 

" I have seen a number of literary characters, 
with whom I was not previously acquainted, 
since I came here. Mr. Hazlitt, Mr. Hunt, 
Mr. Procter ' (who has published a most beau- 
tiful and exquisite collection of poems called 

* Barry Cornwall wrote, in his memoir of Lamb :— 

" The last time I saw Charles Lloyd was in company with Hazlitt. 
We heard that he had taken lodgings at a working brazier's shop, in 
Fetter Lane, and we visited him there and found him in bed, much 
depressed, but very willing to discuss certain problems with Hazlitt, 
who carried on the greater part of the conversation. We understood 
that he had selected these noisy apartments in order that they might 
distract his mind from the fears and melancholy thoughts which at 
that time distressed him." 



Dramatic Sketches under the feigned name of 
Barry Cornwall — get the book if you can — it 
is a small volume, and not expensive), Mr. 
Godwin, Miss Joanna Baillie (the authoress of 
the plays on the passions), Mrs. Barbauld, and 
Miss Aikin, &c., &c. I might be in society 
every day if I liked, and have often been en- 
gaged to two places the same evening, and have 
received three or four invitations for the same 
day ; yet for one invitation that I accept, I 
decline half a dozen. This keeps me in motion, 
and, if I am not employed in visiting, at least 
my attention is forced out of myself by the 
calls, or the notes which I am obliged to write 
and often receive, from those who seem dis- 
posed to notice me. I have written several 
poems since I have been here — an effort which 
it never came into my thought to make in any 
situation in which I have been for the last four 

In 1819 appeared " Nugs Canorse," a vol- 
ume of poems containing certain new pieces, 
and most of Lloyd's early work with Coleridge 
and Lamb reprinted. The book, which was 
dedicated to Sophia Lloyd, reflected an affec- 
tionate and foreboding temperament. It was 


not remarkable, yet was well reviewed, notably 
by "Christopher North," in "Blackwood." 
Thirty years later, however, in 1849, ^^ ^ ^^" 
view of Serjeant Talfourd's " Final Memorials 
of Charles Lamb," a writer in " Maga" undid 
Christopher's praise with merciless directness. 
In the British Museum is Coleridge's copy of 
" Nugse Canorae," distinguished by a few pen- 
ciled marginalia. These neither display the 
critic in too favourable a light, nor add, as do 
so many of his comments, to the book's value.^ 

* Thus when Lloyd wrote : — 

"Oh, Liberty, 
I ask for thee alone ; — with thee to weave 

Quaint rhymes, to breath the air, were heaven to me ; 
To dream myself the only living thing, save Thee !'* 

Coleridge added in pencil : — 

" To think myself the only Being alive, 


And when in the Advertisement to the Translations from Ovid, Lloyd 
said that he had adopted " smooth versification," Coleridge marked 
the word "smooth," and appended the note: "Verily, rather too 
good a joke !" Coleridge, however, was not entirely without apprec- 
iation for the work. A stanza in one poem began with the line : — 

" When first, I say — I've played the truant long." 

Coleridge remarked (the italics are added) : — "These are not lyrical 
transitions, but the mere orange-sucking of bewildered garrulity — 
really vexatious in a poem of so much merit." 


In December, 1819, writing to Hannah Lloyd 
from rooms in Fleet Street, Lloyd foreshadowed 
his next book, " Desultory Thoughts in Lon- 
don" : — " My friend Manning has been with 
me since last Friday, and I expect stays till the 
next — the 31st. But whether he be here or 
not there is a spare bed for James [Lloyd]. I 
am much more comfortable than I was at Bir- 
mingham ; but that I entirely attribute to the 
greater variety of external impressions made 
upon me. At times still I suffer a great deal : 
tho' much less than I did. I have written a 
poem of between three and four thousand lines 
called ' London ' : it embraces every topic of 
reflection which such a place may be supposed 
to suggest to a contemplative man." 

So far Lloyd had been alone ; but early in 

1820, Sophia and some or all of the children 

joined him, and they took a furnished house at 

Kensington. He wrote thus to Hannah : — " I 

have another volume of poems ready for the 

press — a bookseller has offered to print it at 

his own risk, and to share the profits with me. 

I have also a tale in five volumes, for which I 

have been offered £20 per vol. At all events, 

I hope to be able to avail myself of such an 


opportunity of near neighbourhood of pub- 
lishers as I may never have again, to try, if 
health be afforded me, to form some respect- 
able connection in that way, which may afford 
a prospect of sale to, and profit from, my future 
literary labours." The novel alluded to was 
never published, possibly never finished. 

Lamb's name occurred in Macready's refer- 
ence to Lloyd. In a letter to Barron Field, 
dated August 16, 1820,' we find Lamb men- 
tioning Lloyd : " We received your ' Australian 
First Fruits,' of which I shall say nothing here, 
but refer you to^ * * * P Hunt] of the ' Ex- 
aminer,' who speaks our mind on all public 
subjects. I can only assure you that both 
Coleridge and Wordsworth, and also C. Lloyd, 
who has lately reappeared in the poetical hor- 
izon, were hugely taken with your Kangaroo." 
" Australian First Fruits" was the poetical vol- 
ume by Barron Field which Lamb reviewed 
in the " Examiner" with so light a touch, " The 
Kangaroo" being the title of the second poem. 

In 1820 intense excitement was caused by 
the determination of Caroline, George the 

' Printed in "The Lambs" by Mr. W. C. Hazlitt, 


Fourth's consort, to be recognised as Queen. 
Here is a spirited account of Lloyd's feelings 
in the matter : — 

" I hope that you, like ourselves, are hearty 
in the Queen's cause. In my opinion, as an 
affair of Justice, it matters not whether she be 
innocent or guilty. Who ever heard that there 
was a sex in crime *? It is infamous for such 
a man as our king to throw the first stone in 
such a business, and as infamous in the nobles 
of the Land, under an hypocritical pretence of 
regard for the religion and morals of the country, 
to be the tools of his malice and hatred. — 
If she be judged guilty, it is not because 
she is frail, but because the king hates her. 
Were power in her hands, these very men that 
now sit in judgment upon her, even if she 
were as bad as Catherine of Russia, would be 
at her feet. Where is all that ' proud obedience 
to rank and sex' of which Burke boasted so 
much, gone ? — I blush for Englishmen." 

In 1821 the " Desultory Thoughts in Lon- 
don," Lloyd's best work, from which quotations 
have already been made, was issued. This, 
again, was dedicated to his wife Sophia. One 

more passage may be added to those given earlier 



in this volume ; four stanzas which show us the 
point which Lloyd's own development had 
reached. The influence of Wordsworth is very 

Give me the man who, for thy sake alone — 

Not for his hortus siccus ; cabinet 
Of fossil, spar, shell, coral, mineral, stone ; 

Or for his pencil's sake, doth contemplate 
Thee, Nature ! Give the man who oft has known 

Himself, when he saw thee, self to forget j 
And in a depth of ravishment transfused. 
On thee, with silent meditation, mused ! 

And let this meditation heightened be. 
Religion ! by thy flame, to adoration ! 

And then for things of earth what careth he ? 
For what distress hath he not consolation ? 

He who in Solitude his God can see 

Mid Nature's loftiest scenes, has found salvation. 

From all the petty miseries of life ; 

A balm has gain'd for prejudice and strife. 

A tree, a cottage, or a child at play. 

And where the earth is destitute, the sky. 

Fantastic clouds, when on them the sun's ray 
Confers e'en supernatural imagery ! 

The speechless lustre of the new-born day ! 

The solemn pageant when night broods on high ! 

In these, and thousand more such forms as these. 

His moisten'd eye, his Maker's goodness sees ! 


In the same year, 1821, came " Personal Es- 
says on the Character of Pope as a Poet and 
Moralist, and on the Language and Objects 
most fit for Poetry," a rather tedious piece of 
argument in ten-syllabled couplets, dedicated to 
the author's father. Then, in 1822, "The 
Duke d'Ormond," a tragedy written many years 
earlier, was published ; and, in 1823, " Poems." 
These " Poems," which were introduced by a 
quotation from Byron — 

Sorrow is knowledge : they who know the most 
Must mourn the deepest o'er the fatal truth. 
The tree of knowledge is not that of life — 

included some interesting but abstruse stanzas 
*'on the difficulty with which, in youth, we 
bring home to our habitual consciousness the 
idea of death." At the beginning of this piece 
Lloyd had placed a passage from Elia's essay 
on " New Year's Eve" in a recent " London 
Magazine." On receiving a copy of the book, 
Lamb wrote (" Letters" ii. 79) with heroic 
kindness : — 

" Your lines are not to be understood read- 
ing on one leg. They are sinuous, and to be 

won with wrestling. I do assure you in sin- 


cerity that nothing you have done has given 
me greater satisfaction. Your obscurity, where 
you are dark, which is seldom, is that of too 
much meaning, not the painful obscurity which 
no toil of the reader can dissipate ; not the dead 
vacuum and floundering place in which imagi- 
nation finds no footing : it is not the dimness 
of positive darkness, but of distance ; and he 
that reads and not discerns must get a better 
pair of spectacles. I admire every piece in the 
collection. I cannot say the first is best : when 
I do so, the last read rises up in judgment. To 
your Mother, to your Sister, to Mary dead, 
they are all weighty with thought and tender 
with sentiment. Your poetry is like no other. 
Those cursed dryads and pagan trumperies of 
modern verse have put me out of conceit of 
the very name of poetry. Your verses are as 
good and as wholesome as prose, and I have 
made a sad blunder if I do not leave you 
with an impression that your present is rarely 
valued." From the poem written on the death 
of Mary Lloyd, Charles Lloyd's mother, an 
extract has already been made (page 20). 
With the volume of 1823 Lloyd's literary 

career ended. The shadows then closed around 


him again and he moved with his family to 
France, where he died near Versailles, on Jan- 
uary 16, 1839, a month before his sixty-fourth 
birthday. He thus outlived by a few years 
Coleridge and Lamb, who both passed away in 


Among the papers is a long account of 
Charles Lloyd's children written by Sophia 
Lloyd, their mother, at some time probably in 
the first decade of the century. This chapter 
may well conclude with extracts from these 
loving notes : — 

" I expect few more delightful recollections 
than those connected with the infancy and 
childhood of my children, and to perpetuate 
these I have often thought I would make 
memoranda of those almost nameless circum- 
stances, which nevertheless are of daily recur- 
rence, and nearly as frequently the occasion of 
interesting remark, from children who have 
been encouraged but not taught to think. This 
resolution I at length begin to execute after 
having read with them the first Chapter of 
Genesis this morning. I can be tolerably ac- 
curate in what is so recent, and must afterwards 


endeavour to recall what has most impressed 
me on other occasions. At the 3rd verse, 
' God said, Let there be light, &:c.,' I remarked 
that whatever God thought proper to be done, 
would take place, if He gave only an order for 
it to be so. Gros^ [Charles Grosvenor, born 
1800] replied: ' I should think that the light 
would not have come at His speaking if He 
had not made it beside.' — At the 7th verse, 
* And God made the firmament and divided the 
waters from the waters,' Gros^ said : ' It seems 
as if God did not make the world, but only- 
altered it.' At the 20th verse, ' And God said. 
Let us make man,' James [James Farmer, born 
1801] said: ' Why then, there must be more 
than one God, or else why does it say let us T 
31st verse : ' And God saw everything that He 
had made, &c.' — Gros^ and James : ' How 
much faster God can work than we can ; now 
if we want to make a tree, we must set a stone 
or an acorn, or something, and then it gets a 
little bigger, and a little bigger, and still per- 
haps when we are even quite men, any body 
would think it was but just a young tree. I 
cannot think how God could do so much ; He 
musi have been very tired, though to be sure it 
X9 289 


was God, and that is different from us.' G^os^ : 
* Mama, was it you ? some one told me that 
God was not any shape — but / think He must 
be all shapes ; however, He must if He is 
everywhere. Now suppose I dig a round hole, 
if God is there. He must be round ; and if 
there was a very long place, and He was all 
about there, then He must be long — I cannot 
think how it is.' 

" I have had very little opportunity for ob- 
serving other children free of that restraint 
which the consciousness of observation neces- 
sarily occasions, and of course there is then 
nothing natural or spontaneous in their re- 
marks. Hence I often ask myself whether all 
infant minds dwell apparently with peculiar in- 
terest on serious or even religious subjects'? I 
am pursuaded that it would be easy to render 
such subjects more than any other interesting 
to them — that which cannot be fully explained 
excites perpetual curiosity, and the constant 
necessity one finds of illustration by the analo- 
gies of ordinary and infinitely inferior concerns, 
keeps up in the mind of children a constant 
idea of the comparative dignity of the Deity 

and his operations. I think too that children 


who do not associate promiscuously with others, 
provided there be a family large enough for com* 
panionship, are in a situation most favourable 
to simplicity of character, and habits of reflec- 
tion — or rather, upon reconsidering this opinion, 
such children are in circumstances most favour- 
able for receiving any impression which their 
parents may wish to make upon them, and this 
simplicity of character, this habit of reflection, 
are the points at which I have aimed ; but cer- 
tainly this comparative solitude is more likely 
to produce great men, than great scholars. I 
find that my children are what is called more 
backward than most others, that is, they would 
be longer in reading you a given quantity, but 
every sentence would suggest to them some 

" 2^rd May. — To-day James asked me if we 
were to be very wicked in this world, whether 
God would make us suffer more than Jesus did 
when He was crucified *? 

" James : ' Mama, would it not be as easy 
for God to stop us just before we do wrong 
things, as to punish us for them afterwards ?' 

" Grof. : ' Mama, it seems very wonderful 

that God was never made, and yet it would be 


quite as wonderful if He was made, because 
somebody else must have made those that made 
God, and so still we could not have told how 
the first was made.' 

" Owen [born 1 803] : ' Could God kill Him- 
self? If He was to try, how do you think 
He would do it V 

" Grof. : * Perhaps He'd take the flaming 
sword that drove Adam and Eve out of Para- 

" Gr^/. ; ' Mama, does worlJ without end 
mean that because the world is round there is 
no end to it *?' 

*' Going to church one very wet Sunday, 
Grosvenor said : ' Suppose nobody should be 
there beside ourselves, then, I suppose, the 
parson will go away.' 

" I answered, ' No, if there are three people 
there, I believe he would be obliged to read 
the prayers.' 

" Owen : ' I suppose that is because there are 
three persons in the God-head.' 

" Gros\ :■ ' Who I wonder lighted the first 

" James : I suppose it was lighted at the sun.' 

" Gros" : ' No, that could not be, because 



then there must have been that kind of Glass 
which Mama told us of, and Glass cannot be 
made without fire.' 

" I remarked one cold morning, ' How thank- 
ful you should be who have fire and clothing 
this cold weather. Many poor children have 
not either.' 

" James : * Well, then, Adam and Eve did 
some good, for if they had never been naughty 
we should have been as badly off.' 

" * If God does not love wicked people, and 
He can do everything, why does He not make 
everybody good *?' 

"'Does God live in the ceiling of the 
Garden V 

" ' Is there a Prince of Wales now ? I 
thought there never had been but one.' ' And 
who was that*?' 'Jonah.' 

" ' Look, James, at those beautiful clouds I 
they are almost like Gold.' A ftw minutes 
after : ' Why, all those beautiful clouds are 
gone ! I suppose God has taken them to make 
rainbows of. . . .' 

" Gros^. : ' What a great many things this 
sunshine will make glad I It makes us very 
glad. Mama, because you can take us this nice 



walk, and the birds will be glad because it will 
make the ground soft for them to find worms, 
and it will make the cows glad because all the 
snow will go off the grass, so almost everything 
will be glad.' During this walk we saw many- 
trees that seemed to have, as it were, a foliage 
of ice. Gros^ said, ' Mama, how beautiful it 
looks,' and ran on, but soon returning he said, 
' Do you think this would do for a tale about 
it, " Upon the branches of the trees, the falling 
drops do freeze'"?' Just afterwards we ob- 
served a hawthorn covered with moss. Gros^ 
said : ' I don't know whether that is more beau- 
tiful even in summer than it is in winter, " the 
hawthorn tree where moss doth grow, the 
hawthorn tree where flowers do blow." * I 
shall very long remember this walk : we gath- 
ered moss and lichens, cracked the ice upon 
every runner that crossed our way, knocked off 
the icicles that loaded every weed or plant which 
grew within reach, and spent four hours in 
walking as many miles, seldom in silence, and, 
I believe, when we reached home, that each of 
us thought the morning had been well spent. 
" I had long promised the children that I 

would ask D. W. [Dorothy Wordsworth] to 


spend a week with them, and on the of 

April I went to Grasmere for her ; on my re- 
turn, as I entered, I passed all the children, 
who, seeing me with a small bundle of D's. 
clothes in my hand, cried out : ' Oh, she's come, 
she's come I' and away they ran without staying 
to see even if they were guessing right ; in a 
minute or two they all came back with a flower, 
the treasured produce of their own gardens ; 
this gave me a pleasure which one naturally 
feels in any involuntary proof of disinterested 
kindness. But the day before I heard them 
comparing the beauty and size of their flowers, 
and how long they would probably live, &c. 
1 knew they had watched them day after day, 
and thought ' they never would be flowers.' 
But poor little Eddy [Edward, born 1804] had 
watched in vain ! When his brothers gave 
Dora their full blown polyanthus, he had only 
a just budding primrose to offer. He joined 
in with the circle which they formed round her, 
and with them thrust forward his hand, but 
turned away his head, looking as tho' he could 
not bear to withhold what he, notwithstanding, 
was ashamed to give. The recollection brings 
tears into my eyes, as the sight did into James's, 


who, when he saw Edward's confusion, said : 
' It's the best Eddy's got, Dorothy, he's such a 
little boy.' And Owen, tho' it stript his border 
of its only beauty, fetched a polyanthus saying, 
* Well, Eddy may give mine, and that's a very 
fine one.' " ' 

' It might be added that Grosvenor died in 1840, James in 188 1, 
Owen in 1838, and Edward in 1865. The other children were 
Arthur, Mary, Sophia, Priscilla, Agatha and Louisa. 



MR. Lloyd's later years 

Mr. Lloyd grew old with the deliberation 
and serenity of which Quakers hold the secret. 
Although he reached a great age his powers 
never deserted him. In his business, in public 
affairs both national and local, in his farm at 
Olton Green, and in his books, his mind found 
that continuous yet changeful occupation which 
is its best preservative. 

Among the miscellaneous letters in our bun- 
dle is one from William Wordsworth to Mr. 
Lloyd, the publication of which is commanded 
by the Spirit of Mischief. Herein we find the 
poet of primitive simplicity (who some years 
later was to write the " Proud were ye. Moun- 
tains," sonnet, suggested by the projected Ken- 
dal and Windermere line), asking Mr. Lloyd's 
advice concerning the best railway company in 
which to invest five hundred pounds. This is 

the sonnet : — 



Proud were ye. Mountains, when, in times of old. 

Your patriot sons, to stem invasive war. 

Intrenched your brows ; ye gloried in each scar : 
Now, for your shame, a Power, the Thirst of Gold. 

That rules o'er Britain like a baneful star. 
Wills that your peace, your beauty, shall be sold. 

And clearway made for her triumphal car 
Through the beloved retreats your arms enfold ! 
Heard ye that Whistle ? As her long-linked Train 

Swept onwards, did the vision cross your view? 

Yes, ye were startled ; — and, in balance true. 
Weighing the mischief with the promised gain. 

Mountains, and Vales, and Floods, I call on you 
To share the passion of a just disdain. 

This is the letter : — • 

" My dear Sir, — You will be surprised with 
the matter which this letter will turn upon — 
viz., something like money business, and I feel 
chat I ought not to approach you, without pre- 
viously resting my apology on your known 
friendly disposition. To come to the point at 
once, I have been led to consider Birmingham 
as the point from which the railway companies 
now forming receive their principal impulse, and 
I feel disposed to risk a sum — not more than 

500/. — in purchasing Shares in some promising 


Company or Companies. I do not wish to in- 
volve you in the responsibihty of advising an 
Investment of this kind, but I hope I do not 
presume too much when I request that you 
would have the kindness to point out to me, 
what Companies are thought the most eligible, 
adding directions as to the mode of proceeding 
in case I determine upon purchasing. 

" We heard from Dr. Wordsworth about 3 
weeks ago ; as he does not mention Owen, we 
infer that his health is improved. He speaks 
of his Son John being much benefited by 
Horse exercise, I hope you receive good tid- 
ings from France. We are all very well here, 
and with our united best regards to you and 
your numerous Family, believe me to be, dear 
Sir, very sincerely yours, 

"Wm. Wordsworth.^ 

" Rydal Mount, January 6, 1825." 

' This letter lends point to the late J. K. Stephen's diverting parody 
of Wordsworth in " Lapsus Calami." " Poetic Lamentation" — such 
is the title — "on the Insufficiency of Steam Locomotion in the Lake 
District" : — 

Bright Summer spreads his various hue 

O'er nestling vales and mountains steep, 
Glad birds are singing in the blue, 
In joyous chorus bleat the sheep. 


Dr. Wordsworth was Christopher, the poet's 
brother, and Mr. Lloyd's son-in-law. The pas- 
sage concerning news from France refers to 
Charles Lloyd, then living in that country. 

Southey also was among Mr. Lloyd's corre- 
spondents, with reference to a history of the 
Society of Friends, which he contemplated but 
unfortunately did not write. He found Mr. 
Lloyd's knowledge of great assistance in his 

But men are walking to and fro, 

Are riding, driving, far and near, 
And nobody as yet can go 

By train to Buttermere. 

Wake, England, wake ! 'tis now the hour 

To sweep away this black disgrace — 
The want of locomotive power 

In so enjoyable a place. 
Nature has done her part, and why 

Is mightier man in his to fail ? 
I want to hear the porters cry 

" Change here for Ennerdale !'* 

Presumptuous nature, do not rate 

Unduly high thy humble lot. 
Nor vainly strive to emulate 

The fame of Stephenson and Watt. 
The beauties which thy lavish pride 

Has scattered through the smiling land 
Are little worth till sanctified 

By man's completing hand. 


preliminary studies. The following is the most 
interesting of Southey's letters on this sub- 
ject :— 

*' Keswick, Nov. 25, 1820. 

" My dear Sir, — I have just received your 
parcel of books, with your letter of the 20th. 
I received also G. Whitehead's Journal and the 
epistles of the Yearly Meeting. For these 
favours I am much obliged, and not less so for 
the friendly solicitude which you express, lest 
I should write erroneously or unadvisedly, and 
thereby give offence. 

" I am not so ignorant of mankind, or so in- 
experienced in the world as to suppose it pos- 
sible that such a work can be written without 
offending some of the Society to whom it re- 
lates, unless it were composed with the direct 
object of pleasing them. But I am sure that 
no just and even-minded member of the Society 
ought to be offended with what I shall write, 
no person who will allow to me the same 
freedom of opinion (always exercised within 
the hmits of charity) which he claims for him- 
self. The errors of the early Quakers were 
those of their age, their virtues were their own. 
I will do the amplest justice to their virtues. 


but I shall neither conceal their faults nor those 
of their opponents and persecutors. If I did, 
the lesson of charity, which the book is de- 
signed to enforce, would be weakened and in- 
compleat. These things are matter of history. 
The life of George Fox must be written as 
that of Luther, of Calvin, and of our own 
Cranmer, without setting down anything in 
malice, or withholding anything in favour. 
After all subtractions that may be made, he, 
like them, will remain a good, an eminent, an 
influential man — a great and chosen agent in 
the moral and religious world. The members of 
the Church Establishment will not be offended 
when I shall speak of the severity which was ex- 
ercised against the Quakers in the strongest terms 
of condemnation. The members of your So- 
ciety will have as little reason to be offended, 
because I do not dissemble the provocation 
which their predecessors gave. Perhaps no 
person understands the temper of those times 
better than myself, because no person has 
studied their history more. 

" With regard to facts then, my intention is 
and must be to compose a full and faithful 

history, and that history could not be faithful 


unless it were full. With regard to the manner 
of relating them, I can only say that there will 
be no intention to offend, and that I verily be- 
lieve no person will be offended whom I could 
possibly be desirous of pleasing. 

" Touching the tenets and discipline of the 
Society, tho' I am under no apprehension of 
committing any material error (seeing how 
ample the materials are from which the account 
must be derived) I repeat that it will give me 
great pleasure to submit the chapters which 
relate to them to your perusal before they are 

" Farewell, my dear Sir, and believe me, 
" Yours, with sincere respect, 

" Robert Southey." 

Mr. Lloyd knew of an influence for sweet- 
ness and alertness better even than these multi- 
tudinous interests ; and that was the constant 
companionship of young people. He delighted 
to sun himself in his grandchildren's society, to 
devise amusements for them, to hear their ad- 
ventures, and to tell them his own. And so 
fruitful were the Lloyds that it was a joy easily 



Mr. Lloyd had the pleasant habit of ad- 
dressing from time to time to certain of his 
grandchildren long rhyming letters filled with 
family news and kindly counsel. Among 
those that have been handed down, one dated 
September lo, 1817, a few days before his 
seventieth birthday, is interesting for the tale 
of grandchildren which it presents. Thus : — 

Mary, your Aunt, has children five. 

Who all 1 hope will prove 
A comfort to their Parents dear. 

And join the general love. 
Anna, your Aunt, has also five. 

All very fond of play. 
All these I knovi' vv^ould much enjoy. 

With you a holiday ; 
And I should very much delight 

Could you w^ith them be seen. 
Running about the pleasant lane 

Which is at Olton Green, 
Your cousins also from the Lakes 

Three boys, four girls, would be 
With Grosvenor in addition too 

Such pretty company : 
Your uncle Plumstead's children five 

Should also be invited. 
And your Aunt Susan's children three 

I think would be delighted 


To join the party in the lane. 

Where blackberries abound. 
And where in hedges round the field. 

In plenty nuts are found. 
The nurse might carry in her arms 

Aunt Agatha's great treasure. 
And then the sight of such a group 

Would give me heartfelt pleasure : 
For if you all were there, I think 

If rightly I can count. 
My very dear Grandchildren would 

To forty-one amount.' 

In 1821, when Mrs. Lloyd, who long had 
been in ill-health, passed away, the number of 
grandchildren had been increased to forty-seven. 
Had all lived the total would have been ten 

In another of Mr. Lloyd's familiar epistles, 
written in 1823, a few of these grandchildren 
were described more particularly. Thus, in the 
account of a holiday party : — 

' Mary, who is the first mentioned in this list, became the wife of 
George Braithwaite ; and Anna, of Isaac Braithwaite. The cousins 
from the Lakes were the children of Charles and Sophia Lloyd. Plum- 
stead Lloyd married Frances Batcnson. Susan was Susanna White- 
head, the widow of Thomas Lloyd. Agatha was the wife of James 
Pearson. The two families unrepresented were those of Robert and 
James, to whom the verses were inscribed. 
ao 305 


My Grandson John Wordsworth attempted 

A prize golden medal to gain. 
He wrote a long poem in rhyme. 

But alas his attempt proved in vain ! 
The subject, the death of Jane Grey 

On which he dilated with spirit. 
And tho' he obtained not the prize. 

His verses have very much merit. 
Fanny looks fresh as a rose, 

But is too fond of curling her hair, 
I wish her to dress very neat. 

But as simple, as now she is fair; 
But alas, all my Granddaughters seem 

Too much to launch out in their dress. 
And the more they do this (may I say 

Without hurting) they please me the less. 
For neatness, and simple attire. 

Enliven the feminine graces. 
And give a most exquisite charm. 

To young and to innocent faces. 
Grosvenor reads a few verses in Greek, 

Every morning, when breakfast is done. 
But I cannot prevail on him yet. 

Nor on Fanny, to rise with the Sun, 
And Emma is fond of her bed. 

And I think would be apt to rise late. 
But she knows very well that she must 

Be ready for breakfast at eight. 

Fanny and Emma, who liked folding of the 

hands to sleep, were the daughters of James 


Lloyd. We have another ghmpse of Fanny 
in the admirable stanza from an amusing 
description of his cousins written by Owen 
Lloyd : — 

But Fanny owns but Nature's laws : 

Concealment's surely sin ! 
And so she told her love because 

She could not keep it in. 

Grosvenor was the eldest son of Charles Lloyd. 
John Wordsworth, who was eighteen at the 
time of this poem, subsequently distinguished 
himself at Cambridge, and seemed about to 
fulfil his promise of brilliant scholarship with 
an edition of " ^Eschylus," when he died at the 
early age of thirty-four. It may here be men- 
tioned that Charles Wordsworth, John's brother, 
who was then eighteen, spent part of the fol- 
lowing Christmas holidays, 1823-24, in com- 
posing a poetical letter, in English and Latin, 
to his grandfather. The introduction, which 
is the English portion, began thus : — 

My dear Grandfather, tho' I've nought to tell. 
And all that nought I fear told o'er and o'er. 

You'll see by this sheet that, remembering well 
My former third reception, I've once more 


Ventured in Pindus Street to ring the bell. 
And Proebus civilly hath oped the door : 
Forthwith I've sent my card up to inquire 
For a short interview with Miss Thalia. 

I fency now I see you by the fire 

Sitting in your own dressing-room ; a cousin 

Or two perhaps attending on their sire. 

Or as 'tis Christmas time, say half a dozen : — 

Your guest, too, near the door, whom I desire 
Kindly to be remembered to, is dozing 

Just now, perhaps, with head from out his nook, who 

Sings hourly — like a veritable cuckoo. 

The door now opens ; my epistle enters ; 

The seal is broken ; on my wretched lay 
All the attention of the party centres : — 

*' Who is it from ?" the cousins whisper, " hey ? — 
From Cousin Charles ? I wonder if he's sent us 

Another verse epistle. I dare say, 
'Tis precious stuff." Amazed you eye the stanzas. 
And fear my case is worse than Sancho Panza's. 

The Latin followed. The whole poem is 
printed in the late Bishop of St. Andrews' 
" Annals of my Early Life," where may be 
found also Mr. Lloyd's translation, made in 
his seventy-seventh year, of the Latin poem 
with which this grandson gained the prize at 

Harrow in 1825. The Bishop had pleasant 



memories of his grandfather sitting of an 
evening with a long clay pipe. 

Of the future Bishop of St. Andrews, and 
his brother, Priscilla Wordsworth, writing in 
1815, a few weeks before her death, had said : — 

" With regard to reading, we pursue exactly 
an opposite method with Charles, to that which 
we did with John — in endeavouring to tempt 
him to read, by putting in his hands the most 
attractive books ; adapted to his years and ca- 
pacity — but as yet we have not been able to 
give him a taste for his book. He is remark- 
ably backward, and will never, I fear, have any 
taste for learning. John has read all the usual 
routine of books for children. Miss Edgeworth, 
&c. &c., but they never have seemed any food 
for his mind. He reads thro' a volume at a 
sitting, so that it would be in vain to attempt 
furnishing him with small books. He is just 
now extremely wrapped up in Shakspear's his- 
torical plays, which, together with a collection 
of voyages which his Father has lent him, 
employ all his leisure time." 

The prophecy concerning Charles — " he will 
never have any taste for learning" — was 
strangely falsified ; for, although sufficiently 


"keen" on athletics to play, in 1827, in the 
first Inter-University cricket match — he made 
8 in the only innings Cambridge had, and took 
(left-hand, with a ' twist from the off') seven of 
Oxford's wickets for 25 runs — and to row in 
the first Inter-University boat-race, he became 
subsequently the tutor of Mr. Gladstone, and 
one of the revisers of the New Testament. 

Another of the grandsons, Owen Lloyd, 
Charles Lloyd's third son, also engaged in 
verse for his grandfather's entertainment. His 
ballad of " The Stranger at Bingley" holds an 
agreeable character-sketch of the old man : 

Here seated in his elbow chair. 

On good terms with the fire, 
A man there sat whom none that saw 

Could see but to admire. 

And frequent still the smile serene 

On his calm visage play'd. 
Which, mirror of his soul, his soul's 

Benevolence display'd. 

Youth lov'd his age, he lov'd their cares. 
And while their joys he view'd 

He seem'd like Jason's sire to have 
His youth again renew'd. 


From another of Owen Lloyd's family-pieces 
quotation may be made : a long and innocently 
Bacchanalian letter in rhyme, despatched from 
Cambridge, with a present of Trinity Audit 
ale, to his grandfather, as a propitiation. The 
first part of the letter describes the young 
diplomatist's mock grief at being in Bingley's 
bad books ; the rest of it shows the success of 
his ruse. Thus : — 

First William will the bottles hear 

In th' hamper make a racket. 
And then will tell my Grandfather, 

" Sir, here's of wine a packet." 
** Come, Libby," dear grandfather'll say, 

** Come let us go and see, 
I never wrote to Friend Beaufoy, 

For Wine : what can it be ? 
A cheese from James ? The carriage has 

Cost more than such a curd's worth. 
From Cambridge 'tis. Ah now I see. 

It comes from my son Wordsworth." 
But while the hamper he unpacks, 

A note he'll lay his hands on. 
And read ** Dear Grandfather, I hope 

You'll find it good — Your Grandson." 
He'll smile and say, " I never thought, 

Owen was really bad. 
Do what he would I ne'er could help 

Somehow to love the lad." 


** Why that's exactly as I feel," 

Sweet smiling Lib will say. 
** That ne'er in this sad world may be 

A worse, is all I pray." 
** That's right, my dear, I like to see 

Thee speak up for thy cousin." 
** Yes, Grandpapa, and I am sure there's not 

Like him another dozen." 

Later Libby speaks again : — 

" Of cousin Owen always I 

Both did and shall approve. 
And (is there any harm. Grandpa, 

To love men cousins ?) love." 

And the verses end : — 

Ale is the liquor then to pour 

To pouting friends libation. 
For as I said before, it soon 

Brings reconciliation. 

Owen Lloyd became incumbent of Langdale 
and died there in 1841, in his forty-ninth year. 
Wordsworth's tender Hnes on this beloved pas- 
tor — " Lile Owey," as his parishioners called 
him — are well-known : — 

By playful smiles, alas too oft, 
A sad heart's sunshine, by a soft 


And gentle nature, and a free 

Yet modest hand of charity. 

Through life was Owen Lloyd endeared 

To young and old ; and how revered 

Had been that pious spirit a tide 

Of humble mourners testified. 

Owen Lloyd and Hartley Coleridge were also 
firm friends. When Owen Lloyd died this was 
the beautiful epitaph that Hartley wrote for 
him : — 

Could love devout, or longing sighs, or tears. 

From God obtain a grant of lengthened years. 

Then wandering reader, thou had'st never stood 

Beside the grave of one so young and good. 

Still in the small, but consecrated place 

He spake of judgment and he spake of grace ; 

Of judgment dread, and merciful delay : 

And latest spake of that, the latest day. 

When those — how few — that may compare with him. 

Shall mount on high with brightest seraphim ! 

It is good to think that that perfect trust in 
each other, and mutual understanding, which 
were never to be possible between Samuel 
Taylor Coleridge and Charles Lloyd should 
have subsisted between their sons. 


This passage, from another of Mr. Lloyd's 
rhyming letters, written at Malvern on October 
15, 1825, proves his activity in his old age : — 

I took my Grand-daughters 

This morning a ramble 
But up the steep hills 

They could not well scramble. 
So 76 years 

Might at this time be seen 
More able to climb 

Than blooming eighteen. 

And here, from the next of the series, written 
five days later, is further testimony to the 
Lloyds' determination to multiply : — 

I have with Grandchildren been blest ; 

A numerous race indeed ! 
Already if I count them o'er. 

They do threescore exceed ; 
Of some of these, I have alas ! 

By illness been bereft. 
But still to crowning closing years 

Full fifty now are left ; 
Of these the eldest has attained 

The age of twenty-five. 
The youngest in the world has been 

Not yet two months alive. 


An old man thus hedged about by descend- 
ants cannot be called other than happy in his 
declining days. 

Mr. Lloyd died on January ii, 1828, in his 
eightieth year. 



Alfizri, 173 

"Annual Anthology," Lloyd's 

contributions, 120, 122 
Anti-Jacobiny The, 85 
jinti-yacobin Revie-w and Maga- 

zinty TAty 86-93 

Beaumont, Sir G., and Alfieri, 

Binyon, Laurence, 265 

Brown, T. E., and the "Com- 
plete ^ngler," 143 

Byron, Lord, and Lloyd and 
Lamb, 92, 93 

Campbell, J. Dykes, on the 
quarrel between Coleridge and 
Lloyd, 69 
Clarke, Mrs., Mistress of the 

Duke of York, 182, 183 
Clarkson, Thomas, on Mr. 

Lloyd's " Iliad," 219 
Coleridge, Derwent, on the old 

Brathay family, 262 
Coleridge, Hartley, his birth, 33 
Lloyd's kindness to him, 34 
and Lloyd, 262 
and Owen Lloyd, 312, 313 

Coleridge, Samuel Taylor, visits 
Birmingham, 30 
addresses poems to Lloyd, 

3»> 41 

accepts Lloyd as a pupil, 


verses on Hartley's birth, 


letter concerning his future 
to Mr. Lloyd, 36 

letter to Mr. Lloyd con- 
cerning Charles Lloyd's 
health, 42 

letter to Mr, Lloyd con- 
cerning Charles Lloyd's 
future, 47 

reply to Mr. Lloyd's ques- 
tion, — How would he 
live without compan- 
ions .'50 

admits Lloyd to the poeti- 
cal partnership, 55 

the second edition of the 
" Poems," 56 

The Higginbottom Son- 
nets, 61-63 

and "The Old Familiar 
Faces," 68 



Coleridge, Samuel Taylor, quar- 
rel with Lloyd, 69 

composes "Kubla Khan," 

and " Edmund Oliver," 


and Lamb's " Theses," 

letter to Lamb concerning 

the quarrel, 75, 76 
verses by Lloyd, 81 
inscription in 1834 edition 

of his " Poems," 84 
and The Anti-yacobiiif 


reconciliation with Lloyd, 

criticism of Mr. Lloyd's 

'« Iliad," 195 
and "The Friend," 263 
his character by Agatha 

Lloyd, 264 
his character by Lloyd, 

and Lloyd's " Nugas Ca- 

norae," 281 
"Complete Angler, The," 142, 

Cornwall, Barry, and Lloyd, 279 
Cottle, Joseph, on Charles Lloyd, 

letter from Coleridge on the 
Higginbottom Sonnets, 61 

letter from Lloyd concerning 
his friendship for Cole- 
ridge, 70 

Cowper's "Homer," criticism 
by Mr. Lloyd, 195 
See Seward, Anna 
See Lamb, Charles 
See Southey, Robert 

De guiNCEY, Thomas, on Charles 
Lloyd 260 

" Desultory Thoughts in Lon- 
don," 81, 83, 284 

"Edmund Oliver," 71 
and Mrs. Lloyd, 72 
" English Bards and Scotch Re- 
viewers," 93 

Gentleman's Magazine, Me- 
moir of Mr. Lloyd, 

Memoir of Robert Lloyd by 
Lamb, 189-191 

Mr. Lloyd's "Epistles of 
Horace," 245 
Godwin, William, first meeting 
with Lamb, 86 

entertains Robert Lloyd, 

174. 178, 179 
Godwin, Mrs., and Robert Lloyd, 


" Holy Dying," — the simile of 

a rose, 148 

See Jeremy Taylor 
Homer, see Lloyd, Charles (1748- 

See Seward Anna 



Homer, see Lamb, Charles 

See Southey, Robert 
Horace, see Lamb, Charles 

See Lloyd, Charles (1748- 


Hutton, Catherine, on Mr. 

Lloyd's "Odyssey," 241, 


on the advantages of being 

born a Quaker, 242 
on Mr. Lloyd's " Horace," 

James, Mr. W. P., on Robert 

Lloyd, 170 
Johnson, Dr., at Birmingham, 


Lamb, Charles, contributes to 
Lloyd's poems, 40 
his meeting with Lloyd, 51 
his poem to Lloyd, 52 
his meeting with Robert 

Lloyd, 55 
"Poems" by Coleridge, 

Lamb, and Lloyd, 56 
visits Southey with Lloyd, 

poem on Lloyd, 58, 59 
and James White, 64 
coolness with Lloyd, 66 
"The Old Familiar Faces," 

the " Theses Quaedam Theo- 

logicae," 74 

Lamb, Charles, preface to i8i8 
edition of his works, 78 
verses by Lloyd, 82, 83 
and TAe Anti-yacobin, 85 
and Godwin — " Toad or 

Frog?" 86 
defended by Lloyd, 90 
first letter to Robert Lloyd, 

admonished Robert Lloyd 

on his conduct, 98 
on Quaker observances, 104 
on the sweets of life, 107 
his poem " The Witch," 

harbours Robert Lloyd in 

London, 114 
on literary indiscretions, 120 
his meeting with Manning, 

his susceptibility to beve- 
rages, 124 
is entertained by Mr. Lloyd, 

on portraits, 137 
and his " Gentle Giantess," 

on the " Complete Angler," 

on the delights of town, 144, 

on Manning, 146 
on Fletcher's " Purple 

Island," 147 
on Jeremy Taylor, 147- 




Lamb, Charles, on "selections" 

from authors, 153-lSS 
on Cooke's acting in " Rich- 
ard III.," 156-160 
on certain old playwrights, 

158, IS9 
on Robert's engagement, 

on the blessedness of the 

single state, 168 
"Poetry for Children," 181 
on Mrs. Clarke's notoriety, 

on Coleridge's " Friend," 

moves to Inner Temple 

Lane, 185 
his memoir of Robert Lloyd, 

on Mr. Lloyd's " Iliad," 

on nicety of rhyme, 227 
on Mr. Lloyd's " Odyssey," 

on Cowper's " Homer," 233 
on Homer and Milton, 

on Mr. Lloyd's " Horace," 

on Barron Field's poems, 

on Lloyd's " Poems," 286 
facsimile of letter to Robert 

Lloyd , to face p. 107 
Lepaux and the Theophilanthrop- 
ists, 90, 91 

Letters : S. T. Coleridge to Mr. 

Lloyd, 36, 42, 47 
Catherine Hutton to Mr. 

Lloyd, 231, 241, 254 
Letters, Charles Lamb to Robert 

Lloyd, 95, 98, 103, 107, 

108, 121, 124, 136, 142, 

•47, 153. 156, 164, 167, 

171, 184, 229 
Charles Lamb to Mr. Lloyd, 

219, 226, 230, 232, 236, 

Agatha Lloyd to Hannah 

Lloyd, 264 
Charles Lloyd to Robert, 28, 

29, 80, 266, 267, 269, 270 
Charles Lloyd to Hannah 

Lloyd, 189, 277, 284 
Charles Lloyd to Mr. Lloyd, 

Robert Lloyd to Hannah 

Lloyd, 173, 177, 178, 179, 

180, 182 
Thomas Manning to Robert 

Lloyd, 128, 132 
Anna Seward to Mr. Lloyd, 

196, 202, 207 
Robert Southey to Mr. Lloyd, 

217, 243, 257, 300 
Priscilla Wordsworth to Han- 
nah Lloyd, 273 
William Wordsworth to Mr. 
Lloyd, 298 
Lloyd, Agatha, her opinion of 
Coleridge, 264 
her poetical descendants, 265 



Lloyd, Charles, (1637-1698), 15 
(1662-1747), 16 
(1748-1828), the extent of 

his family, 18 
his character (from the Gen- 
tleman's Magazine,") 20 
letter to Robert about Cole- 
ridge, 35 
letter from Coleridge about 

his future, 36 
letter from Coleridge, about 

Lloyd's health, 42 
(1748-1828), letter from 

Coleridge about Lloyd's 

future, 47 
reasons with Robert, 115 
entertains Lamb, 125 
his character by Robert, 

his translation of the 

"Iliad," 194-228 
his translation of the 

" Odyssey," 229-244 
his translation of Horace's 

Epistles, 245-258 
letter from W. Wordsworth, 

and Southey's history of 

Quakers, 300 
and his grandchildren, 303- 

his death, 315 
(1775-1839), his character, 

joins Wilkinson at Yan- 
wath, 28 

Lloyd, Charles, letters to Robert, 

recommending a course of 

reading, 28, 29 
meets S. T. Coleridge, 30 
domesticates with S. T. 

Coleridge, 33 
his character by Coleridge, 34 
as critic of Coleridge, 39 
" Poems on the death of 

Priscilla Farmer," 40 
his health at Bristol, 45 
his future as Coleridge saw 

it, 48 
his meeting with Lamb, 51 
Lamb addresses a poem to 

him, 52 
letters to Robert about Lamb, 

leaves Stowey, 56 
(1775-1839), " Poems" by 

Coleridge, Lamb and 

Lloyd, 56 
letter to Robert about the 

" Poems," 59 
and Nehemiah Higginbot- 

tom, 61 
lives in London with White, 

his alienation from Cole- 
ridge, 69 
" Edmund Oliver" and 

Coleridge, 71 
letter to Robert on quarrels , 80 
verses on Coleridge, 81 
verses on Lamb, 82, 83 
and The Ant'i- Jacobin, 85-90 



Lloyd, Charles, replies to The 
Anti-yacobin satire, 90 
moves to Cambridge, 94 
and Lamb's poem " The 

Witch," 112 
his poems in the '• Annual 

Anthology," 120, 122 
his marriage, 122 
introduces Lamb to Man- 
ning, 123 
reconciliation with Cole- 
ridge, 140 
character by Robert, 163 
on Robert's death, 191 
and Mr. Lloyd's " Horace," 

his life at Old Brathay, 259- 

his conversational powers, 

his appreciation of Pope, 262 
his account of Coleridge and 

"The Friend," 263 
a character of Coleridge, 267 
his novel "Isabel," 268- 

(1775-1839), on sympa- 
thetic relations, 270 
his character by Talfourd, 

and Shelley, 272 
his translation of Alfieri, 273 
life in London, 275-287 
and Macready, 275-277 
on London impressions, 277 
and Barry Cornwall, 279 

Lloyd, Charles, his " Nugae Ca- 

norae," 280 
and Queen Caroline, 283 
his " Desultory Thoughts in 

London" and later works, 

criticism by Lamb, 286 
his death, 288 
his family, 295 
Lloyd, Mrs. (Mary Farmer), wife 

of Charles Lloyd (1748- 

1828), 18 
her character by her son, 19 
on " Edmund Oliver" and 

novelists, 72 
on Robert's taste in dress, 97 
her character by Lamb, 132 
her death, 305 
Lloyd, Owen, a stanza on his 

cousin, 307 
a portrait of Mr. Lloyd, 310 
verses to Mr. Lloyd, 311 
his epitaph by Wordsworth, 

and by Hartley Coleridge, 

312, 313 
Lloyd, Priscilla, set Wordsworth, 

Lloyd, Robert, apprentice at Saf- 
fron Walden, 28 
first meeting with Lamb, 55 
first letter from Lamb, 95 
is reasoned with by Lamb 

on his conduct, 98 
and Quaker observances, loz 
runs away, 1 14 
meets with Manning 1 18 



Lloyd, Robert, letters from Man- 
ning, 128, 132 
in town with Priscilla, 141 
his character sketch of Mr- 
Lloyd, i6z 
his character sketch of 

Charles Lloyd, 163 
his marriage, 166 
visits London, 173-184 
and the Godwins, 174, 175, 

178, 179 
visits Charles and Mary 

Lamb, 180 
a character sketch of Lamb, 

his death, 188 
testimony of his wife, 188 
memoir by Lamb, 189—192 
testimony of his brother 

Charles, 191 
testimony of his brother 

James, 192 
the younger and the cake, 
Lloyd, Sampson (i 664-1 724) 16 
Lloyd, Sampson (i 699-1 779) 

and Dr. Johnson, 17 
Lloyd, Sophia, her first child, 139 
estimate by De Quincey, 261 
and the young Coleridges, 

and her children, 288-296 

Manning, Thomas, as Robert 
Lloyd's counsellor, 1 18 
meets Lamb, 123 

Manning, Thomas, letters to 
Robert Lloyd, 128, 132 
his character by Lamb, 146 
Milton John, tee Lamb, Charles 

" New Morality, The," 85 

Phillips, Stephen, 266 
Poole, Thomas, 39, 57 
Pope's " Homer,'' see Seward, 
See Lamb, Charles 
See Southey, Robert 
Portraits, Charles Lamb, by Haz- 
litt, frontispiece. 
S. T. Coleridge, by P. Van- 
dyke, to face p. 30 
Charles Lloyd, by Constable, to 

face p. 260 
Sophia Lloyd, by Constable, to 
face p. 288 

Seward, Anna, disquisitions on 
translations of the "Il- 
iad," 196, 201, 207 
her "Moonlight land- 
scape," 205, 216 
Shelley, P. B., and Charles 

Lloyd, 272 
Southey, Robert, at Burton, 58 
and Nehemiah Higginbot- 

tom, 63 
and The Anti-yacobin, 89 
on Mr. Lloyd's "Iliad," 

on metres for translators, 
217, 244 



Southey, Robert, on literature as 
a profession and a hobby, 
on Mr. Lloyd's " Odyssey," 

his attitude to Horace, 257 
on Mr. Lloyd's " Horace," 

on Quakers, 300 
Stephen, J. K., his parody of 
Wordsworth justified, 299 

Talfourd, Serjeant, on Charles 

Lloyd, 272 
Taylor, Jeremy, 147-155 

Walton, Izaak, see ** Complete 

White, James, Lloyd's com- 
panion, 64 
his supper to chimney- 
sweepers, 64 
Wilkinson, Thomas, his opinion 

of Lloyd, 28 
Witch, The, 108-II3 

Wollstonecraft, Mary, her two 

daughters, 176 
Wordsworth, Charles (Bishop of 
St. Andrews), verses to 
Mr. Lloyd, 307 
his childhood, 309 
Wordsworth, Chistopher, and 
Priscilla Lloyd, 113 
on loose rhyming, 227 
Wordsworth, John, 307 
Wordsworth, Priscilla [nit 
Lloyd), her appearance at 
seventeen, 113 
the mother of Bishops, 113 
her opinion of Lamb, 1 17 
her marriage, 169 
on Alfieri, 273 
her death, 274 
on her sons, Charles and 
John, 309 
Wordsworth, William, and Hor- 
ace, 256 
and railways, 296—300 
and Owen Lloyd, 312 





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