The Letters of John Keats

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

West has damned--wholesale-- Peacock has damned sattire,1 Ollier has damn'd Music2--Hazlitt has damned the bigotted and the bluestockined how durst the Man?! he is your only good damner and if ever I am damn'd--damn me if3 I shoul'nt like him to damn me. It will not be long ere I see you, but I thought I would just give you a line out of Devon--

Your's affectionately John Keats

Rember me to all we know


From BENJAMIN ROBERT HAYDON to KEATS. Wednesday 25 March 1818.

Address: John Keats Esq. ∣ Teignmouth ∣ Devonshire

Postmark: 2 AP 1818.

March 25th 1818 My dear Keats,

Your bi-----ell as you call it, is beautiful & I take it as a great friendly kindness to remember me in that way--as often as you feel inclined to give vent remember I am always ready with pleasure to receive the result--Surely you will not leave Devonshire without going to Plymouth the country round which is most exquisite--I will give you letters and promise you a kind & a welcome reception--Do go my dear Keats, and if you consent let me know & I will write my Friends immediately, and go round by the Totness road which is very fine, & come home by Ashburton, and then by Bridgewater where I have a sister who will be most happy to see you--I am getting on well, & have got my Christ better than I have ever had it yet--and in a good state to compleat it--I am most happy to hear your Poem is advancing to publication, God grant it the most compleat success, and may its reputation equal your genius--Devonshire has somehow or other the character of being rainy, but I must own to you I do not think it is more so than any other County, and pray remember the time of year; it has rained in Town almost incessantly ever since you went away, the fact is you dog you carried the rain with you as Ulysses did the Winds and then opening your rain bags you look round with a knowing wink, and say 'curse this Devonshire how it rains!' Stay till the Summer, and then bask in its deep blue summer Sky, and lush grass, & tawny banks, and silver bubbling rivers--you must not leave Devonshire without seeing some of its Scenery, rocky, mossy, craggy with roaring rivers & as clear as crystal--it will do your mind good--

Shakespeare in speaking of somebody who is gradually dying makes some one say--"how is he?"--still ill nature & sickness debate it at their

____________________
1
Mary Shelley writes in her Journal, 11th of February 1818.-- 'spend the evening at Hunt's', and Jane Clairmont's diary supplements this with--' Peacock, Hogg, and Keats were present'.
2
Mr. Blunden records that Charles Ollier was an amateur flute- player.
3
damn me if heavily scored out, possibly not by Keats.

-119-

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