1800 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

William Boscawen

Robert Southey to Samuel Taylor Coleridge, 1 January 1800; New Letters, ed. Curry (1965) 1:213-14.



The Gentlemen of the Literary Fund are about to commence a review I hear — now these Gentlemen write books themselves — and when one Gentleman reviews another Gentlemans poetry — what pretty gentleman-like criticism we shall have! There is Boscawen who did Horace into English — as probably his bookseller has most reason to remember, and W. T. Fitzgerald who wrote rhymes upon Marie Antoinette — a dying speech and confession poet, and Mister Pye who also has fallen foul upon Alfred! God have mercy upon his soul — Blackmore first and then Henry James Pye — and twenty four books besides! — but these Gentleman Critics who will be so civil to one another must vary their review by a little severity — and that must fall upon the poor writers who are not Gentlemen.