LORD  BYRON  and  his  TIMES
Documents Biography Criticism

Samuel Rogers and his Contemporaries
William Wordsworth to Samuel Rogers, 14 June [1831]

Vol. I Contents
Chapter I. 1803-1805.
Chapter II. 1805-1809.
Chapter III. 1810-1812.
Chapter IV. 1813-1814.
Chapter V. 1814-1815.
Chapter VI. 1815-1816.
Chapter VII. 1816-1818.
Chapter VIII. 1818-19.
Chapter IX. 1820-1821.
Chapter X. 1822-24.
Chapter XI. 1825-1827.
Vol. II Contents
Chapter I. 1828-1830.
Chapter II. 1831-34.
Chapter III. 1834-1837.
Chapter IV. 1838-41.
Chapter V. 1842-44.
Chapter VI. 1845-46.
Chapter VII. 1847-50.
Chapter VIII. 1850
Chapter IX. 1851.
Chapter X. 1852-55.
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‘Rydal Mount: 14th June [1831].

‘Let me, my dear friend, have the benefit of your advice upon a small matter of taste. You know that while I was in London I gave more time than a wise man would have done to portrait-painters and sculptors. I am now called to the same duty again. The Master and a numerous body of the Fellows of my own college, St. John’s, Cambridge, have begged me to sit to some eminent artist for my portrait, to be placed among “the
worthies of that house” of learning, which has so many claims upon my grateful remembrance. I consider the application no small honour, and as they have courteously left the choice of the artist to myself, I entreat you would let me have the advantage of your judgment. Had
Jackson been living, without troubling you, I should have inquired of himself whether he would undertake the task; but he is just gone, and I am quite at a loss whom to select. Pray give me your opinion. I saw Pickersgill’s pictures at his own house, but between ourselves I did not much like them. Phillips has made coxcombs of all the poets, save Crabbe, that have come under his hand, and I am rather afraid he might play that trick with me, grey-headed as I am. Owen was a manly painter, but there is the same fault with him as the famous Horn one has heard of—he is departed. In fact, the art is low in England, as you know much better than I; don’t, however, accuse me of impertinence, but do as I have desired.

‘We stayed three or four days at Cambridge, and then departed for the North; but I was obliged to leave dear Mrs. Wordsworth at Nottingham, suffering under a most violent attack of sciatica. Her daughter was left with her. We fell among good Samaritans, and in less than a fortnight she was able to renew her journey.

‘Her stay here, however, was short. My sister was summoned to Cheltenham by our old friend Dr. Bell, and as we did not dare to trust her so far from home on account of her delicate state of health, Mrs. W. was so kind and noble-minded as to take the long journey in her stead. The poor doctor thought himself dying, but
he has rallied, and I expect Mrs. W. back with
Southey, who left us this morning for the same place. Southey is gone upon business connected with the doctor’s affairs. Excuse this long story, but I know you are kind enough to be interested about me and my friends in everything. Dora is writing by me, both she and my sister and Wm. join me in kindest regards to yourself and your sister.

‘Most faithfully yours,
Wm. Wordsworth.’