1812 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Henry Kirke White

William Wordsworth, 13 May 1812; Henry Crabb Robinson on Books (1938) in Peacock, Critical Opinions of Wordsworth (1950) 378.



Wordsworth talked at ease, having confidence in his audience.... He spoke of Kirke White. Both he and Rough agreed in considering him as a man of more talents than genius, and that the great correctness of his early writings was a symptom unpromising as to his future works. He would probably have been rather a man of great learning than a great poet. He would not have been more than a Southey, said Rough. "And that would have been nothing after all," said Wordsworth," — "when speaking of the highest excellence," he added. He however spoke of afterwards of the "genius" of Southey.