1852 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Horace Twiss

William Jerdan, in Autobiography of William Jerdan (1852-53) 2:287-88.



Horace Twiss's autobiography would be an interesting work; for he saw, and knew, and took part in a good deal, both political and literary, and especially dramatic. I do not know how it was, but his being in Parliament, and holding a high official appointment, seemed to provoke unusual jealousy in the literary class from which he sprung. Instead of being pleased with the fact, out of esprit du corps, they generally viewed it as if it were a promotion over their own heads, and twitted and lampooned Twiss accordingly. And then he lived in, and entertained the highest society. I have dined with Lord Eldon, Lord Castlereagh, and other Cabinet Ministers in his dark little dining-room in Serle Street, Lincoln's Inn; and such doing in a literary man are apt to provoke malice. Therefore his ready wit was ridiculed, his very considerable talents were depreciated, and all his little weaknesses or foibles (and who are without them?) were exaggerated and abused. Such is too much the way of the literary as well as common world!