The Works of Charles and Mary Lamb — Volume 6 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 491 pages of information about The Works of Charles and Mary Lamb Volume 6.

        Lone midnight-soothing melancholy bird,
          That send’st such music to my sleepless soul,
          Chaining her faculties in fast controul,
        Few listen to thy song; yet I have heard,
        When Man and Nature slept, nor aspen stirred,
          Thy mournful voice, sweet vigil of the sleeping
        And liken’d thee to some angelic mind,
          That sits and mourns for erring mortals weeping. 
        The genius, not of groves, but of mankind,
          Watch at this solemn hour o’er millions keeping. 
          In Eden’s bowers, as mighty poets tell,
        Did’st thou repeat, as now that wailing call—­
          Those sorrowing notes might seem, sad Philomel,
        Prophetic to have mourned of man the fall.]

LETTER 516

CHARLES LAMB TO VINCENT NOVELLO

Friday. [P.M.  May 14, 1830.]

Dear Novello, Mary hopes you have not forgot you are to spend a day with us on Wednesday.  That it may be a long one, cannot you secure places now for Mrs. Novello yourself and the Clarkes?  We have just table room for four.  Five make my good Landlady fidgetty; six, to begin to fret; seven, to approximate to fever point.  But seriously we shall prefer four to two or three; we shall have from 1/2 past 10 to six, when the coach goes off, to scent the country.  And pray write now, to say you do so come, for dear Mrs. Westwood else will be on the tenters of incertitude.

C. LAMB.

LETTER 517

CHARLES LAMB TO VINCENT NOVELLO

[May 20, 1830.]

Dear N.—­pray write immediately to say “The book has come safe.”  I am anxious, not so much for the autographs, as for that bit of the hair brush.  I enclose a cinder, which belonged to Shield, when he was poor, and lit his own fires.  Any memorial of a great Musical Genius, I know, is acceptable; and Shield has his merits, though Clementi, in my opinion, is far above him in the Sostenuto.  Mr. Westwood desires his compliments, and begs to present you with a nail that came out of Jomelli’s coffin, who is buried at Naples.

[Vincent Novello writes on this:  “A very characteristic note from Dear Charles Lamb, who always pretended to Rate all kinds of memorials and Relics, and assumed a look of fright and horror whenever he reproached me with being a Papist, instead of a Quaker, which sect he pretended to doat upon.”  The book would be Novello’s album, with Lamb’s “Free Thoughts on Eminent Composers” in it (see next letter but one).

Shield was William Shield (1748-1829), the composer.  He was buried in Westminster Abbey in the same grave as Clementi.  Nicolo Jomelli (1714-1774) was a Neapolitan composer.]

LETTER 518

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The Works of Charles and Mary Lamb — Volume 6 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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