1819 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Sir William Davenant

Charles Kirkpatrick Sharpe to Walter Scott, 7 April 1819; Letters from and to Charles Kirkpatrick Sharp (1888) 2:198-99.



I have been much amused with Will. Davenant, who you were so good as to give me. Some of his poetry is very smooth and charming, with now and then old-fashioned wild flight, very seldom to be met with now. I perceive that Pope stole a good deal from him, as he did from Shakespeare, who, if I remember right, was reported to have been his papa. Sir William's play of "The Wits" is surely capital, and there are excellent scenes in some of his other pieces. I wonder if there be any portrait extant of this worthy before he lost his nose.