Charles Dickens

Kathleen Mary Tillotson, Madeline House, and Graham Storey (eds), The British Academy/The Pilgrim Edition of the Letters of Charles Dickens, Vol. 3: 1842–1843

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To W. C. MACREADY, 16 MAY 1843*

MS Morgan Library.

Devonshire Terrace | Sixteenth May 1843

My Dear Macready

Sheil,2 Fonblanque, and I, have held a kind of Divan,3 wherein we have determined that it will be better to defer the dinner to Black, for the present; in as much as some negociations4 (having no reference, however, to his restoration) are pending between him and Easthope; and the dinner, however private and friendly, might give offence to the latter Potentate whose sickly soul was cradled in the Stock Exchange, and ran alone in Lombard Street.5

So the dinner, for the time, is off. And if it never comes on, until men are Men and Nature's Nobility are baronets, God help the Landlord who looks to profit from it.

  •                               Affectionately Your friend always
  • W. C. Macready Esquire                         Charles Dickens

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Notes

Editor’s Note
2 Richard Lalor Sheil (1791–1851; DNB), dramatist and MP, and co-author of "Sketches of the Irish Bar" in the New Monthly from 1823; friend of Macready's. A remarkable orator in spite of a "squeaking" voice "like a tin kettle" (S. C. Hall, Retrospect of a Long Life, 1883, i, 249–54).
Editor’s Note
3 "An Oriental council of state" (OED, i).
Editor’s Note
4 Mackay (Forty Years' Recollections, i, 95) recalls that when Black had to leave the Morning Chronicle, his friends unsuccessfully tried to get him an appointment on the London Gazette; Easthope may have been concerned in this.
Editor’s Note
5 Clearly a half-quotation, but untraced.
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