Dear Mrs. A.—Mary begs me to say how much she regrets we can not join you to Reigate. Our reasons are —1st I have but one holyday namely Good Friday, and it is not pleasant to solicit for another, but that might have been got over. 2dly Manning is with us, soon to go away and we should not be easy in leaving him. 3dly Our school girl Emma comes to us for a few days on Thursday. 4thly and lastly, Wordsworth is returning home in about a week, and out of respect to them we should not like to absent ourselves just now. In summer I shall have a month, and if it shall suit, should like to go for a few days of it out with you both any where. In the mean time, with many acknowledgments etc. etc., I remain yours (both) truly, C. LAMB.
India Ho. 13 Apr. Remember Sundays.
CHARLES LAMB TO WILLIAM HONE [No date. April, 1824.]
Dear Sir,—Miss Hazlitt (niece to Pygmalion) begs us to send to you for Mr. Hardy a parcel. I have not thank’d you for your Pamphlet, but I assure you I approve of it in all parts, only that I would have seen my Calumniators at hell, before I would have told them I was a Xtian, tho’ I am one, I think as much as you. I hope to see you here, some day soon. The parcel is a novel which I hope Mr. H. may sell for her. I am with greatest friendliness
Yours C. LAMB.
["Pygmalion.” A reference to Hazlitt’s Liber Amoris; or, The New Pygmalion, 1823.
Hone’s pamphlet would be his Aspersions Answered: an Explanatory Statement to the Public at Large and Every Reader of the “Quarterly Review,” 1824.
Here should come a note from Lamb to Thomas Hardy, dated April 24, 1824, in which Lamb says that Miss Hazlitt’s novel, which Mr. Hardy promised to introduce to Mr. Ridgway, the publisher, is lying at Mr. Hone’s. Hardy was a bootmaker in Fleet Street.]
CHARLES LAMB TO BERNARD BARTON
May 15, 1824.
DEAR B.B.—I am oppressed with business all day, and Company all night. But I will snatch a quarter of an hour. Your recent acquisitions of the Picture and the Letter are greatly to be congratulated. I too have a picture of my father and the copy of his first love verses; but they have been mine long. Blake is a real name, I assure you, and a most extraordinary man, if he be still living. He is the Robert [William] Blake, whose wild designs accompany a splendid folio edition of the “Night Thoughts,” which you may have seen, in one of which he pictures the parting of soul and body by a solid mass of human form floating off, God knows how, from a lumpish mass (fac Simile to itself) left behind on the dying bed. He paints in water colours marvellous strange pictures, visions of his brain, which he asserts that he has