If you do not know this, you do not know the capabilities of this country, you may be said to be a stranger to Enfield. I found it out one morning in October, and so delighted was I that I did not get home before dark, well a-paid.
I shall long to show you the clump meadows, as they are called; we might do that, without reaching March Hall. When the days are longer, we might take both, and come home by Forest Cross, so skirt over Pennington and the cheerful little village of Churchley to Forty Hill.
But these are dreams till summer; meanwhile we should be most glad to see you for a lesser excursion—say, Sunday next, you and another, or if more, best on a weekday with a notice, but o’ Sundays, as far as a leg of mutton goes, most welcome. We can squeeze out a bed. Edmonton coaches run every hour, and my pen has run out its quarter. Heartily farewell.
[Much of the “Lamb country” touched upon in this letter is now built on. In my large edition I give a map of Lamb’s favourite walking region.
“The giant Tree by Cheshunt” is Goff’s Oak.
“The Black Book of St. Albans.” The Black Books exposed abuses in the church.]
CHARLES LAMB TO T.N. TALFOURD
[No date. End of 1828.]
Dear Talfourd,—You could not have told me of a more friendly thing than you have been doing. I am proud of my namesake. I shall take care never to do any dirty action, pick pockets, or anyhow get myself hanged, for fear of reflecting ignominy upon your young Chrisom. I have now a motive to be good. I shall not omnis moriar;—my name borne down the black gulf of oblivion.
I shall survive in eleven letters, five more than Caesar. Possibly I shall come to be knighted, or more: Sir C.L. Talfourd, Bart.!
Yet hath it an authorish twang with it, which will wear out my name for poetry. Give him a smile from me till I see him. If you do not drop down before, some day in the week after next I will come and take one night’s lodging with you, if convenient, before you go hence. You shall name it. We are in town to-morrow speciali gratia, but by no arrangement can get up near you.
Believe us both, with greatest regards, yours and Mrs. Talfourd’s.