The Letters of John Keats

By Maurice Buxton Forman; John Keats | Go to book overview

the fire--those to G. Mathew I will suffer to meet the eye of Mr H. not withstanding that the Muse is so frequently mentioned. I here sinned in the face of Heaven even while rememb〈e〉ring what, I think, Horace says, "never presume to make a God appear but for an Action worthy of a God.1 From a few Words of yours when last I saw you, I have no doubt but that you have something in your Portfolio which I should by rights see--I will put you in Mind of it. Although the Borough is a beastly place in dirt, turnings and windings; yet No 8 Dean Street is not difficult to find; and if you would run the Gauntlet over London Bridge, take the first turning to the left and then the first to the right and moreover knock at my door which is nearly opposite a Meeting, you would do one a Charity which as St Paul saith is the father of all the Virtues--At all events let me hear from you soon--I say at all events not excepting the Gout in your fingers--

Your's Sincerely John Keats--


2. To GEORGE KEATS. Aug. 〈1816〉.

No address or postmark.

Margate Augt

My dear George,

If there be any room in this Sheet after I shall have

left, the first turning was Tooley Street, south of which, where London Bridge railway stations now stand, was a collection of small streets forming the district known as Berghené or Petty Burgundy. One of these running south was Dean Street, the southern end of it was a little east of Guy's.' Keats probably lived on the east side about the centre of the part not abolished by the railway. Dean Street is now known as Stainer Street; the change in name was ordered on the 16th of June 1906.

____________________
1
'Ars Poetica',191. Keats, who omitted the final quotes, had probably read the Earl of Roscommon's version:

'Never presume to make a God appear,
But for a Bus'ness worthy of a God.'

2
A corner of the holograph of this letter has been torn off and with it the precise date and possibly one or two words after 'prosing'. George Keats made a transcript of the poem in his scrap-book and dated it at the end 'Margate--August 1816'. The transcript follows the original very closely, but slight variations are found in the printed version in Keats's first book, Poems, 1817, where it appears as the second of three 'Epistles', the first being addressed to George Felton Mathew and the third to Charles Cowden Clarke.

-4-

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