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Selected Writings

Charles Lamb

Edited by Jack Morpurgo

Cover Picture of Selected Writings
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Categories: 18th Century, 19th Century
Imprint: FyfieldBooks
Publisher: Carcanet Press
Available as:
Paperback (296 pages)
(Pub. Aug 2003)
9781857547214
£9.95 £8.96
  • Description
  • Excerpt
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  • Contents
  • I even think that sentimentally I am disposed to harmony. But organically I am incapable of a tune. I have been practising God Save the King all my life, whistling and humming of it over to myself in solitary corners, and am not yet arrived, so they tell me, within many quavers of it. from A Chapter on Ears

    Charles Lamb (1775-1834), essayist, poet, humorist, critic, letterwriter and friend, has an enduring literary reputation. His early Tales from Shakespeare (1807), written in collaboration with his sister Mary, and Specimens of English Dramatic Poets (1808) were followed in 1820 by the first of his sixty-seven Essays of Elia published in the London Magazine, which have been at the heart of his literary reputation ever since. Reading these essays draws one into Lamb's circle of friends, sitting by his fireside and enjoying the company of the most personal of English essayists.

    This book contains a representative selection from his writings-essays, dramatic criticism, verse and letters-which demonstrates his literary achievements, and is at the same time his autobiography.

    Jack Morpurgo was Professor in the School of English at the University of Leeds from 1969 to 1983. Author of histories, biographies and travel books, he has studied Charles Lamb and his contemporaries for many years, and has edited works by Leigh Hunt, Keats, Trelawny, Cobbett and Fenimore Cooper. The present volume, based on his much earlier book with the same title, has a larger selection of Lamb's writings, more extensive linking passages and a new introduction.
    Table of Contents

    Introduction

    I MR CHARLES LAMB

    In the Days of My Childhood

    The Old Benchers of the Inner Temple

    Blakesmoor in H-shire



    And in My Joyful Schooldays

    Christ's Hospital Five-and Thirty Years Ago



    Strange Face of Calamity

    Letter to Coleridge, 27 September 1796

    Letter to Coleridge, 12 May 1800



    Paragraph Spinner

    Newspapers Thirty-Five Years Ago



    The Phantom Ghost of Elia

    A Character of the Late Elia, by a Friend



    By Duty Chained

    Work

    Letter to Wordsworth, 7 April 1815

    Letter to Wordsworth, 6 April 1825

    The Superannuated Man

    Popular Fallacies: That We Should Rise With the Lark

    Another Popular Fallacy: That We Should Lie Down With the Lamb

    Letter to Barton, 25 July 1829



    A Glass Too Much

    Letter to Cary, October 1834

    Confessions of a Drunkard

    Elia on his Confessions of a Drunkard



    Merits and Demerits

    An Autobiographical Sketch

    The Blank Filled



    II HE SERVES UP HIS FRIENDS

    The Old Familiar Faces



    Double Singleness

    Letter to Sarah Hutchinson, 19 October 1815

    Letter to Wordsworth, May 1833



    God Almighty's Gentleman

    Letter to Manning, 28 August 1800

    Letter to Manning, Autumn 1800

    Letter to Mrs Hazlitt, November 1823

    Amicus Redivivus

    Letter to Dyer, 22 February 1831



    Logician, Metaphysician, Bard

    Letter to Manning, 17 March 1800

    Letter to Coleridge, Autumn 1820

    The Two Races of Men

    Letter to Collier, 10 December 1829

    The Death of Coleridge



    Three Yound Maids in Friendship Met

    Hester

    Letter to Asbury, April 1830

    Letter to Moxon, 24 July 1833

    Letter to Fanny Kelly, 20 July 1819

    Letter from Fanny Kelly, 20 July 1819

    Letter to Fanny Kelly, 20 July 1819



    Charles Lamb & Co

    Letter to Mrs Wordsworth

    Many Friends



    III THE IRATE ST CHARLES

    The Irate St Charles

    Letter to Coleridge, May 1798

    Letter of Elia to Robert Southey, Esquire

    On the Literary Gazette

    Sonnet. St Crispin to Mr Gifford

    The Triumph of the Whale



    IV MORE HOUSE LAMB THAN GRASS LAMB

    Letter to Manning, 28 November 1800

    Letter to Wordsworth, 30 January 1801

    The Londoner

    Letter to Manning, 24 September 1802

    Letter to Wordsworth, 9 August 1814

    Written at Cambridge, 15 August 1819

    Oxford in the Vacation

    The Old Margate Hoy

    Letter to Barron Field, 22 September 1822



    V JUICES OF MEATS, INNOCENT VANTITIES AND JESTS

    Grace before Meat

    Letter to Coleridge, 9 March 1822

    A Dissertation upon Roast Pig

    Letter to Mr and Mrs Collier, 12 January 1823

    Thoughts on Presents of Game, Etc.

    Rejoicings upon the New Year's Coming of Age

    Dream Children; A Reverie



    VI CRITICAL AND ANTI-CRITICAL

    The Front Row of the Pit

    My First Play

    Letter to Wordsworth, 11 December 1806

    On the Custom of Hissing at the Theatres

    Stage Illusion

    On the Artifical Comedy of the Last Century

    On the Tragedies of Shakespeare



    C.L. is not Musical

    To Clara Novello

    A Chapter on Ears

    Free Thoughts on Several Eminent Composers



    A Good Judge of Prints and Picture

    Barrenness of the Imaginative Faculty in the Productions of Modern Art



    Notes of Some Contemporaries

    Charles Lamb
    Charles Lamb was born in London in 1775. He was educated at Christ's Hospital, where he formed his lifelong friendship with Coleridge. After school, he obtained a post at the South Sea House and was then promoted to the India House, where he worked until his retirement in 1825. In 1796 ... read more
    Jack Morpurgo
    Jack Morpurgo was Professor in the School of English at the University of Leeds from 1969 to 1983. Author of histories, biographies and travel books, he has studied Charles Lamb and his contemporaries for many years, and has edited works by Leigh Hunt, Keats, Trelawny, Cobbett and Fenimore Cooper. He died ... read more
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