The Best Letters of Charles Lamb eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 323 pages of information about The Best Letters of Charles Lamb.

[2] Miss Lamb has amusingly described the progress of their labors on this volume; “You would like to see us, as we often sit writing on one table (but not on one cushion sitting), like Hermia and Helena, in the ‘Midsummer Night’s Dream;’ or rather like an old literary Darby and Joan, I taking snuff, and he groaning all the while, and saying he can make nothing of it, which he always says till he has finished, and then he finds out that he has made something of it.”



June, 1806.

Dear Wordsworth,—­We are pleased, you may be sure, with the good news of Mrs. Wordsworth. [1] Hope all is well over by this time.  “A fine boy!  Have you any more?—­One more and a girl,—­poor copies of me!” vide “Mr. H.,” a farce which the proprietors have done me the honor—­But I set down Mr, Wroughton’s own words, N. B.—­The ensuing letter was sent in answer to one which I wrote, begging to know if my piece had any chance, as I might make alterations, etc, I writing on Monday, there comes this letter on the Wednesday.  Attend.

[Copy of a letter from Mr. R. Wroughton.]

SIR,—­Your piece of “Mr. H.,” I am desired to say, is accepted at Drury Lane Theatre by the proprietors, and if agreeable to you, will be brought forwards when the proper opportunity serves.  The piece shall be sent to you for your alterations in the course of a few days, as the same is not in my hands, but with the proprietors,

I am, sir, your obedient servant,


[Dated] 66, Gower Street, Wednesday, June 11th, 1806.

On the following Sunday Mr. Tobin comes.  The scent of a manager’s letter brought him.  He would have gone farther any day on such a business.  I read the letter to him.  He deems it authentic and peremptory.  Our conversation naturally fell upon pieces, different sorts of pieces,—­what is the best way of offering a piece; how far the caprice of managers is an obstacle in the way of a piece; how to judge of the merits of a piece; how long a piece may remain in the hands of the managers before it is acted; and my piece, and your piece, and my poor brother’s piece,—­my poor brother was all his life endeavoring to get a piece accepted.  I wrote that in mere wantonness of triumph.  Have nothing more to say about it.  The managers, I thank my stars, have decided its merits forever.  They are the best judges of pieces, and it would be insensible in me to affect a false modesty, after the very flattering letter which I have received.

[Illustration:  Admit to Boxes.  Mr. H. Ninth Night Charles Lamb]

I think this will be as good a pattern for orders as I can think on.  A little thin flowery border, round, neat, not gaudy, and the Drury Lane Apollo, with the harp at the top.  Or shall I have no Apollo,—­simply nothing?  Or perhaps the Comic Muse?

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The Best Letters of Charles Lamb from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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