1828 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

James Silk Buckingham

John Neal, in Review of Sumner Lincoln Fairfield, England — and Ourself; The Yankee [Portland] 1 (16 July 1828) 229.



The dinner alluded to here was nothing remarkable; nor were the company very large. Bur Mr. F. threw off desperately, under an idea that the dinner was given to him — I do in my soul believe — that he was the lion, so that I was obliged to extricate him, over and over again, by general conversation, from the scrapes he got himself into, while playing up to what he appeared to think was expected of him. He looked the poet — with both eyes — rolling them up and rolling them down — he breathed the poet — he swallowed his very bread-and-butter with a tragedy-air — he out Byroned Byron in his fits of absence, and gloom, and misanthropy, and I was obliged to divert the attention of the company from his folly. Therefore it was that I talked more than usual — and I flatter myself that I generally talk my share. But the best of the joke is, that instead of my setting him down — we were both set down by Mr. Buckingham, the oriental traveller; and that, instead of my being left with Mr. Fairfield, in the coach, "to dissect the company" — Mr. Fairfield rode outside (though it rained) to give me an opportunity of securing him a birth in the Oriental Herald, edited by Mr. B. (and which I did — and verily I have had my reward for that and many other like favors). So much for Mr. Fairfield's regard for truth — for his accuracy — and for his love of embellishment.