William Wordsworth

Ernest De Selincourt and Alan G. Hill (eds), The Letters of William and Dorothy Wordsworth, Vol. 4: The Later Years: Part I: 1821–1828 (Second Revised Edition)

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  • Address: S. C. Hall Esqre, 2 East Place, Kennington Road, Lambeth, London [In M. W.'s hand]
  • Postmark: 4 May 1827.
  • Stamp: Kendal Penny Post.
  • MS. Broadley Collection. Archives Department of the Westminster Public Libraries. Hitherto unpublished.

  • Rydal Mount
  • near Ambleside.
  • May 2nd [1827]

Dear Sir,

I regret that it is out of my power to meet the wish you have expressed in a manner so flattering to me. The Editors or proprietors of every annual Publication on the plan of yours have applied to me for contributions, and to all I have returned the same answer, that I never had been connected with any periodical publication, except once or twice, when I had sent articles to a newspaper, and that I had no intention to change the resolution I had made, to keep apart from that field.—It cost me a good deal to hold to this Resolve in the case of Mr Alaric Watts, who, though personally unknown to me, had taken a great deal of trouble in making arrangements respecting the new Edition of my Poems now on the point of appearing—If I could possibly have made an exception to my general Rule, it must have been in his behalf.

Mr Watts's Book1 confines itself to amusement merely, and for pg 526this reason the plan of it is less agreeable to my taste than your's.1 For myself, amusement is never so sure to be attained in a miscellany publication as when information and instruction go along with it, or when it is sought through those channels.—

Being really interested in the success of your work, I am happy to learn that so many leading names are to be added to the stock of your Contributors, and with best wishes

  • I remain                  
  • dear Sir                 
  • respectfully             
  • your obliged         
  • Wm Wordsworth2  

Notes Settings


Editor’s Note
1 The Literary Souvenir.
Editor’s Note
1 The Amulet aimed at uniting instruction with amusement, as W. W. noted in L. 285 above.
Editor’s Note
2 Hall adds the following note, dated 1 Nov. 1842: 'Although I cannot go the length of some others in admiration of the poetry of Wordsworth, I am still very glad to learn from the public papers that Government has just awarded to him a pension of three hundred a year. My impression was that he had been so complimented some time ago … '
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