LORD  BYRON  and  his  TIMES
Documents Biography Criticism

My Friends and Acquaintance
R. Plumer Ward IX
Robert Plumer Ward to Peter George Patmore, [1827?]

Vol I Contents
Charles Lamb I
Charles Lamb II
Charles Lamb III
Charles Lamb IV
Charles Lamb V
Charles Lamb VI
Charles Lamb VII
Charles Lamb VIII
Charles Lamb IX
Charles Lamb X
Thomas Campbell I
Thomas Campbell II
Thomas Campbell III
Thomas Campbell IV
Thomas Campbell V
Thomas Campbell VI
Thomas Campbell VII
Lady Blessington I
Lady Blessington II
Lady Blessington III
Lady Blessington IV
Lady Blessington V
R. Plumer Ward I
R. Plumer Ward II
R. Plumer Ward III
R. Plumer Ward IV
R. Plumer Ward V
R. Plumer Ward VI
Appendix vol I
Vol II Contents
R. Plumer Ward VII
R. Plumer Ward VIII
R. Plumer Ward IX
R. Plumer Ward X
R. Plumer Ward XI
R. Plumer Ward XII
R. Plumer Ward XIII
R. Plumer Ward XIV
R. Plumer Ward XV
R. Plumer Ward XVI
R. Plumer Ward XVII
R. Plumer Ward XVIII
R. Plumer Ward XIX
R. Plumer Ward XX
R. Plumer Ward XXI
R. Plumer Ward XXII
R. Plumer Ward XXIII
Horace & James Smith I
Horace & James Smith II
William Hazlitt I
William Hazlitt II
William Hazlitt III
William Hazlitt IV
William Hazlitt V
William Hazlitt VI
William Hazlitt VII
William Hazlitt VIII
Appendix vol II
Vol III Contents
William Hazlitt IX
William Hazlitt X
William Hazlitt XI
William Hazlitt XII
William Hazlitt XIII
William Hazlitt XIV
William Hazlitt XV
William Hazlitt XVI
William Hazlitt XVII
William Hazlitt XVIII
William Hazlitt XIX
William Hazlitt XX
William Hazlitt XXI
William Hazlitt XXII
William Hazlitt XXIII
William Hazlitt XXIV
William Hazlitt XXV
William Hazlitt XXVI
Laman Blanchard I
Laman Blanchard II
Laman Blanchard III
Laman Blanchard IV
Laman Blanchard V
Laman Blanchard VI
Laman Blanchard VII
Laman Blanchard VIII
R & T Sheridan I
R & T Sheridan II
R & T Sheridan III
R & T Sheridan IV
R & T Sheridan V
R & T Sheridan VI
R & T Sheridan VII
R & T Sheridan VIII
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“ * * * It is worth a little trouble to prevent a possible mistake, even though mistake might lead to no consequences.

“You know how glad I am that ‘De Vere’ in is the hands of such a man as your friend. What I wish to explain is in regard to the inscription on the old column at Talbois, in, I think, the second chapter of the first volume, and which is meant as a key to the story. It begins with—
‘Trust in thy own good sword,
Rather than prince’s word,’ &c.

“From what accompanies this, one would suppose that it was really (as stated) the composition of Edward, the seventeenth Earl of Oxford; and it has just occurred to me that a reviewer might think of (possibly mention) it as such. I feel it right therefore to say
that these are imaginary lines; though the device of the trunk of the oak making new shoots, and the motto of ‘Insperata floruit,’ are not.

“As I am writing I will just say a word about the possibility and the consequence of making applications of the characters to individuals of the present day. What I say in the preface is no more than true: I know not such people as Mowbray, Cleveland, or Clayton, or Oldcastle. I am not sure, however, that I could defend myself in regard to Wentworth. For though no individual answers to him exactly, it would be difficult to deny altogether that I had not distinct people in mind, in forming the different parts of his character. All the anecdotes regarding his administration, as found in the last chapter of the fourth volume, belong to Mr. Pitt; and it would not be easy to say that, in regard to the character of his eloquence, his love of letters, and all that distinguishes his conversation, in the chapter on posthumous fame, in the second volume, what is stated does not apply to Mr. Canning. Nor, if anybody finds out and marks this resemblance
in any piece of transitory criticism, do I think it would do me any credit in form to deny it,—as I could most safely all that regards Mowbray and Clayton and Cleveland, &c. Part of the Wentworth sketch, however, is formed upon the better parts of
Bolingbroke’s character.

“In the portrait of Lady Clanellan, on her introduction in the first volume, those who know her as well as I do may recognise the amiable Duchess of Buckingham. If they do, I cannot deny it.

“In Herbert I certainly confess my old and revered master Dr. Cyril Jackson, the former Dean of Christ Church; and many of the stories in the Man of Imagination, some perhaps also of the Man of Content (Mowerdale), may possibly be found in my own history.

“I think this is the extent of my confession; and I make it upon the same principle as a client or a patient would to his lawyer or physician, viz., the imprudence of not laying his case unreservedly before them. My extreme anxiety not to be exposed to accusations of meaning things and people which and
whom I do not mean, induces me thus to tell you, and your friend too, what may be safely denied and what not. Use it as, in your discretion, you may think fit; for it would seriously annoy me if any of the characters which, as I have said, are absolutely ideal, were applied to any particular persons.

“About those I have mentioned as prototypes I am indifferent, as they, at least, cannot feel either hurt or offended.

“The candour in which I write might make me allow that perhaps I had the old Duke of Newcastle, or part of him, in view, in Lord Mowbray; but I am not even sure of this myself. In the same manner I might mention Lord Waldegrave as Lord Clanellan; but no part of Cleveland, no part of Clayton.

“If you think this long explanation unnecessary, burn it; if not, use it with a view to my feeling upon it. I wish it, with the same view, to be shown to your cultivated friend.” * * *