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William Wordsworth, Dorothy Wordsworth

The Letters of William and Dorothy Wordsworth, Vol. 5: The Later Years: Part II: 1829–1834 (Second Revised Edition)

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  • Address: E. Quillinan Esqre, Bryanston Street, Portman Sqre, London.
  • Franked: Penrith August Twenty Four 1831 Mexborough.1
  • Postmark: (1) 24 Aug. 1831 (2) 26 Aug. 1831. Stamp: Penrith.
  • MS. Lilly Library, Indiana University.
  • Russell Noyes, 'Wordsworth and Pickersgill', NQ cciv (Mar. 1959), 86–7.

  • Lowther Castle
  • Wednesday 23
  • d August [1831]

My dear Mr Quillinan,

Did I ever thank you for the manner in which [you] managed the rather delicate business with Mr Pickersgill.2—I have nevertheless, being as you know of an anxious temper, had some little uneasiness about one point—viz the Expense which the College may be put to.—I thought I had expressed myself so in making the proposal through you; that Mr P. would consider it so much in the light of a recreation, that a journey to the Lakes, or rather a little tour among them, would be a recompense for his trouble and fatigue, and that no additional charge for the Picture would be made on this account.—I thought I had put this as delicately as I could, pg 421nevertheless for this very reason I fear the expression may have been left short. Could you set me at ease on this particular; for I could not think myself justified in putting the College to an expense which they might not be prepared for when they made the request which of course I must consider as an honor.—

There is also another point—Could you learn when it would suit Mr. P—to come.—I had the other day an affectionate message from Sir Walter Scott, adding that if I did not come soon to see him it might be too late. This was said in allusion to his delicate state of health. I am therefore anxious to go and fulfill an engagement of many years standing.—Dora will go along with me and as we should certainly proceed as far as Edinburgh and not improbably farther, I should be glad to leave my proceedings to Mr. P's convenience.

You know that the Lakes are very beautiful in October, perhaps as much so as at any time—but the days are short. I wish you could make Mr P. understand that I was sincere in my wish to see him at my House, and that the invitation was not one of favor—

Thanks for your news of France—I wish to hear more. When are we to see you1

Rotha2 is a delightful creature, and I love her very much—

  • Ever affectionately yours    
  • Wm Wordsworth  

Notes Settings


Editor’s Note
1 John Savile, 3rd Earl of Mexborough (1783–1860), of Methley Park, Leeds: Irish peer, and M.P. for Pontefract, 1807–26, and 1831–2.
Editor’s Note
1 E. Q. went back to France soon after this, and did not revisit the Lakes until the new year.
Editor’s Note
2 Rotha Quillinan was being looked after by Dora W. while E. Q. was in France.
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