William Wordsworth, Dorothy Wordsworth

The Letters of William and Dorothy Wordsworth, Vol. 6: The Later Years: Part III: 1835–1839 (Second Revised Edition)

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937. W. W. to M. W.

  • MS. WL.
  • LY ii. 715.

  • Whitehaven Monday Morn.
  • [2 Nov. 1835]

My dearest Mary

Thanks for the good news of your Letter.—John was at St Bees when I arrived; did not see him till next morning. Found Isabella suffering from a cough and cramp, and both the Children pulled down somewhat by teething.—We had a nice chat all the evening. Next day John brought me here,2 and dined one of a very large party—I shall follow the direction about bathing, meaning to go in at noon to day. The family here all wonderfully well; my arm is something better; my eyes are pretty well, but there is more tenderness and aching occasionally in the ball of the right eye than I used to have, and I am not sure that the pain in the jaw on that side of the face may have something to do with it, as it makes all that side of the face so sensible of cold. Isabella told me that her mother's face was very nervously affected in the same way when having got her new teeth, and they not fitting, she was obliged to masticate, as I have had for a long time, on one side of her jaw. She was very ill with it, the cold always flying to that side of the face.—I shall not write much from here; Lord L. being the only franker, and having so few covers to dispose of.

pg 111I send you without comment Miss Peabody's Letter,1 which I found in the Parcel. I did not look at the book, so far even as to ascertain that it was hers.—John continues to look very well.—This morning I put the watch into Edgar's2 hands, and called at the [?]3—the man not at home—was not [able]4 to pay a bill.—I have nothing more to say except pray write. The family here stay till friday at least, perhaps Saturday, but write me by tomorrow's post. Be particular about Dora also—remember me kindly to Mrs Ellwood,5 if she depart before my return, which will not perhaps be before the middle of next week.

Ever most affectionately yours, with kindest love to Dora and Sister—

W. Wordsworth   

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Notes

Editor’s Note
2 To Whitehaven Castle.
Editor’s Note
1 Elizabeth Peabody (see pt. i, L. 312) had become assistant to Bronson Alcott (1799–1888) in his Temple School in Boston the previous year, and published her account of his educational methods in Records of a School, (anon.), 1835, which she sent to W. W. on 7 Sept. with a covering letter explaining how his poetry was being used to develop the innate ideas of the children. 'You would be pleased to find yourself made foster-father to young Spirits:—how I should like to know what you would say to the commentary of that young child on "Our birth is but a sleep and a forgetting!" How I wish you could have seen how like the breeze of Spring, the first stanzas of that Ode passed over the young blossoms of Life—the very sound of wakening Nature seemed to breathe from their lit-up faces …' (WL MSS.)
Editor’s Note
2 Robert Edgar, the Whitehaven watchmaker.
Editor’s Note
3 MS. illegible.
Editor’s Note
4 Word dropped out.
Editor’s Note
5 For Mrs. Ellwood, see pt. i, L. 9.
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