William Wordsworth

Alan G. Hill (ed.), The Letters of William and Dorothy Wordsworth, Vol. 8: A Supplement of New Letters (Revised Edition)

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W. W. to JOSIAH WEDGWOOD3

  • MS. untraced.
  • R.B. Litchfield, Tom Wedgwood: The First Photographer, 1903, p. 127.

[Sept. 1806]

… When your brother entered the room where I am now writing, about four years ago,4 I was quite heart-stricken; he was deplorably changed, which was painful to see; but his calm and dignified manner, united with his tall person and beautiful face, pg 8produced in me an impression of sublimity beyond what I ever experienced from the appearance of any other human being …

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Editor’s Note
3 See EY, L. 85. This fragment, which perhaps follows MY pt. i, L. 44, is quoted in a short account of Tom Wedgwood's life drawn up for the information of James Macintosh (see MY pt. ii, L. 259), who was to edit his philosophical speculations. The plan, together with Coleridge's proposed memoir, was abandoned, but S. T. C. later paid tribute to 'my munificent co-patron … the benefactor of my intellect' in The Friend. See Griggs, iii. 20, and The Friend (Collected Works of S. T. Coleridge), ed. Barbara E. Rooke, 1969, i. 146–7.
Editor’s Note
4 The visit referred to here was on Christmas Eve 1802, when S. T. C. brought Tom Wedgwood to Dove Cottage (see EY, L. 180). W. W. had not seen him since he came to Alfoxden in Sept. 1797 with his optimistic scheme for educating the genius of the future (see Moorman, i. 332–5).
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