LORD  BYRON  and  his  TIMES
Documents Biography Criticism

Samuel Rogers and his Contemporaries
Lord Howden to Samuel Rogers, 29 March 1844

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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‘62 (bis) Faubourg St. Honoré, Paris: 29th March, 1844.

‘My dear Mr. Rogers,—A thousand thanks. I am really pained at having entailed so much trouble on you. I did so from having looked for the passage last year myself without success, and I had never before seen what appeared to be so good an edition of “Theophrastus” as that in your possession; I therefore thought that it might be found there. Entertaining, and indeed blood-stirring, as are Plutarch’s Lives, I believe him to have been extremely loose in his materials and mode of compilation. When we all meet together in the next world, if we are allowed to do aught save sing Hallelujahs, there will be few things more entertaining than to hear history and biography read aloud of an evening before the persons of whom they treat.

‘There is no news abroad here, and there seems no doubt but that Guizot is safe until a new Chamber. There are many diverse speculations on what will take place then, for there is one fact undeniable that, be the cause what it may, the pressure of general unpopularity upon Guizot is greater than what I recollect to have been that of Polignac. I have heard it said that nobody was really in love who knew the colour of his mistress’s eyes, but I believe that hatred is still stronger as a passion when
it springs from no definite reason. There seems to be a feeling that has infiltrated itself into all classes of society here, which, no matter how unfounded, must some day or another produce its effect, and that is a determination to believe that France is in a state of degradation, and that she is the slave of the stranger. The dislike against the English here has, if possible, increased since the business of Tahiti. Don’t believe what
Mrs. Dawson Damer and fine ladies say to the contrary. It is inextinguishable for one reason that must always exist—not our burning of the “Pucelle,” not Waterloo, not the incarceration of Bonaparte—these things may be forgotten—but because we prevent France being the first nation in the world. This fact is continually before their eyes, from the quotations of our funds being always three per cent, higher than theirs, down to the snug, light, noiseless English-built carriage that they see rolling in their streets. I have, however, often thought that it was a very legitimate cause of irritation for the indigènes of a capital to see all their best lodgings occupied by Englishmen, all their best boxes at the theatres ditto, all the best wines drunk ditto,—all this done from the better lining of their pockets, and accompanied by the very evident feeling (in which I entirely join) that Paris, agreeable as it is, would be much more so if there were fewer Frenchmen. It is, however, very amusing to see the way in which every now and then the people here catch at something going on in England, as if it was the beginning of a breaking-up in our Body Politic. ’Twas Ireland three months ago, ’tis now a Jacquerie in consequence of Lord Ashley’s motion. I believe the Govern-
ment would have done wiser to have admitted it; at the same time I cannot but think that all legislation on such matters is dangerous. “
The Times” has a singular article on the subject written quite in an “agrarian” spirit, and as for the forced and legislative attempt to rectify all evil, we first must understand how the existence of it comes to play so chief a part in the whole scheme of the world, before we assume the possibility of controlling it with any effect.

‘Always truly yours,