1830 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Charles Crocker

Robert Southey to Mrs. Southey, 30 December 1830; Life and Correspondence (1849-50) 6:125-26.



At Chichester, one of the canons, Mr. Holland (who married Murray's sister), expected us. The cathedral is a very interesting pile on many accounts, and much finer than books or common report had led me to expect. A bookseller showed me a letter of Cowper's and some MS. notes of his written in Johnson's Life of Milton. Chillingworth's grave is in the cloisters, near Mr. Holland's door. Dr. Chandler the Dean came to us in the cathedral library, where, among other rarities, is the oldest volume of English sermons by Bishop Fisher. Bernard Barton's brother also joined us there, to be introduced to me. After luncheon, Mr. Holland took me to see his Chichester poet, Charles Crocker, a shoe-mender, a very industrious, happy, and meritorious man, who is perhaps the best example of the good that may be done by education to persons in his rank of life. His poems are of very considerable merit. Then we went on the city walls, and lastly into the Bishop's palace; so that I saw all that could be shown me in Chichester, a cheerful, pleasant city.