1803 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Joseph Ritson

George Chalmers to Archibald Constable, 27 October, 27 December 1803; Archibald Constable and his Literary Correspondents (1873) 1:410, 412.



I shall keep an eye on poor Ritson's Remains; and if I can retrieve what I fear is gone you shall know. I would give more for the MS. than any bookseller, because I would make it a groundwork....

You have heard of the fate of Ritson's Bibliographia Scotica, which was said to have been burnt, but appeared in his Catalogue. I wished for it, that I might have completed it, and given it to you, as Ritson intended. I offered upwards of forty guineas for it; and Longman and Rees bought it dearly either for you or Mr. Walter Scott. If they find it a dear bargain they have themselves to blame by not acting in concert for the good of the whole. Longman and Rees must at last come to me for help