1823 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

John Clare

Anonymous, in "The Literary Police Office, Bow-Street, London" Port Folio [Philadelphia] S4 15 (June 1823) 505.



JOHN CLARE (a comely country-looking man, in a smock frock, and face to match) appeared to resist an order of filiation, made on the affidavit of one of the Muses with whom he had kept company, and who appeared to have been too liberal of her favours to him. The oath being persisted in, his innocence stood him in no stead; and he was ordered to set apart half-a-crown, out of sixpence a-day, to support the child. He pleaded poverty; but the magistrates explained to him that a poor soldier had been known to have managed such an allowance, and therefore they resisted his plea. Clare is said to have a wife, and ten little children all under the age of four years, which makes his case more reprehensible.