The Works of Charles and Mary Lamb — Volume 2 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 713 pages of information about The Works of Charles and Mary Lamb — Volume 2.

Page 15, line 13. I was a poor friendless boy. Here Lamb speaks as Coleridge, who came all the way from Ottery St. Mary, in Devonshire (not Calne, in Wiltshire), and had no London friends.  In John Woodvil Lamb borrowed St. Mary Ottery again (see Vol.  IV.).  Coleridge has recorded how unhappy he was in his early days at school.

Page 15, line 12 from foot. Whole-day-leaves. In this connection the following passage from Trollope’s History of Christ’s Hospital, 1834, is interesting:—­

Those days, on which leave is given to be absent from the Hospital during the whole day, are called whole-day leaves....  A ticket is a small oval medal attached to the button-hole, without which, except on leaves, no boy is allowed to pass the gates.  Subjoined is a list of the holidays, which have been hitherto kept at Christ’s Hospital; but it is in contemplation to abridge them materially.  Of the policy of such a measure great doubts may fairly be entertained, inasmuch as the vacations are so short as to give sufficient respite neither to master nor scholar; and these occasional breaks, in the arduous duties of the former more especially, enable him to repair the exhausted energies of body and mind by necessary relaxation.  If those days, which are marked with an asterisk, fall on a Sunday, they are kept on the Monday following; and likewise the state holidays.


Jan. 25.  St. Paul’s conversion.
     30.  King Charles’s martyrdom. 
Feb. 2.  Candlemas Day.
      24.  St. Matthias. 
          Shrove Tuesday. 
          Ash Wednesday. 
March 25.  Lady Day. 
April 23.  St. George.
      25.  St. Mark. 
May 1.  St. Philip and St. James.
29.  Restoration of King
            Charles II. 
          Ascension Day. 
          Whit Monday. 
          Whit Tuesday. 
June 11.  St. Barnabas.
      24.  St. John Baptist.
      29.  St. Peter. 
July 25.  St. James. 
          Thursday after St.
            James. (Nurses’ Holiday.)
Aug. 24.  St. Bartholomew. 
Sept. 2.  London burnt.
21.  St. Matthew.
      29.  St. Michael. 
Oct. 18.  St. Luke.
     23.  King Edward VI. born.
      28.  St. Simon and St. Jude. 
Nov. 1.  All Saints.
5.  Gunpowder Plot.
      9.  Lord Mayor’s Day.
17.  Queen Elizabeth’s birthday.
      30.  St. Andrew. 
Dec. 21.  St. Thomas.

Also the birthdays of the King and Queen, and the Prince and Princess of Wales:  and the King’s accession, proclamation, and coronation.

In addition to the generous allowance of holidays above given the boys had every alternate Wednesday for a whole day; eleven days at Easter, four weeks in the summer, and fifteen days at Christmas.  In 1837 the holiday system was remodelled.  Compare Lamb’s other remarks on his whole-day rambles in “Recollections of Christ’s Hospital” (Vol.  I.) and in the essays in the present volume entitled “Amicus Redivivus” and “Newspapers.”

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The Works of Charles and Mary Lamb — Volume 2 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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