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him there, given us one of the most beautiful portraitures of a poet dreamer,-
"The brooding poet with the heavenly eyes." At Grasmere he planned The Friend, Wordsworth and some other of his friends furnishing a few contributions. From this period till 1816, he appears to have been fluctuating between the Lakes, London, and the west of England. In 1807 we find him at Bristol; and then at Stowey again, at Mr. Poole's. It was at this time that De Quincey sought an interview with him. He went to Stowey, did not meet with Coleridge, but stayed two days with Mr. Poole, and describes him and his house thus: “A plain-dressed man, in a rustic old-fashioned house, amply furnished with modern luxuries, and a good library. Mr. Poole had travelled extensively, and had so entirely dedicated himself to his humbler fellow-countrymen who resided in his neighbourhood, that for many miles round he was the general arbiter of their disputes, the guide and counsellor of their daily life ; besides being appointed executor and guardian to his children by every third man who died in or about the town of Nether Stowey."
De Quincey followed Coleridge to Bridgewater, and found him thus: “In Bridgewater I noticed a gateway, standing under which was a man, corresponding to the description given me of Coleridge, whom I shall presently describe. In height he seemed to be five feet eight inches; in reality he was about an inch and a half taller, though, in the latter part of life, from a lateral curvature in the spine, he shortened gradually from two to three inches. His person was broad and full, and tended even to corpulence ; his complexion was fair, though not what painters technically style fair, because it was associated with black hair; his eyes were large and soft in their expression; and it was by a peculiar appearance of haze or dimnese which mixed with their light, that I recognised my object. This was Coleridge. I examined him steadily for a moment or more, and it struck me that he neither saw myself, nor any other object in the street. He was in a deep reverie ; for I had dismounted, made two or three trifling arrangements at the inn-door, and advanced close to him, before he seemed apparently conscious of my presence. The sound of my voice announcing my name first awoke him. He stand, and for a moment seemed at a loss to understand my purpose, or his own situation ; for he repeated rapidly a number of words which had no relation to either of us. There was no mauraise honte in his manner, but simple perplexity, and an apparent difficulty in recovering his position among daylight realities. This little scene over, he received me with a kindness of manner so marked that it might be called gracious."
Mr. De Quincey then tells us that Coleridge was at this moment domesticated with a most amiable and enlightened family, descendants of Chubb, the pbilosophic writer; and that, walking out in the evening with Coleridge, in the streets of Bridgewater, he never s3 w a man so much interrupted by the courteous attentions of young and old.
In 1809 we find him again at the Lakes; in 1810 he left them again with Mr. Basil Montague, and remained some time at his house. In 1811 he was visiting at Hammersmith with Mr. Morgan, a common friend of himself and Southey, whose acquaintance they had made at Bristol; and here he delivered a course of lectures on Shakspeare and Milton. While still residing with Mr. Morgan, his Tragedy of Remorse was brought upon the stage at Drury-lane, at the instance of Lord Byron, then one of the managing committee, with admirable success. After this he retired to the village of Calne, in Wiltshire, with his friend Morgan, partly to be near Lisle Bowles ; where he arranged and published his Sibylline Leaves, and wrote the greater part of the Biographia Literaria. He also dedicated to Mr. Morgan the Zapolya, which was offered to Mr. Douglas Kinnaird, for Drury-lane, and declined. The effect of this refusal Coleridge has noticed in some lines at the end of the Biographia Literaria, quoted from this very play :
" () we are querulous creatures! Little less
Than all things can suffice to make us happy ;
To make us wretched.” In 1816 he took refuge under the roof of Mr. Gillman, the surgeon, in the Grove, at Highgate. The motive for his going to reside with this gentleman was, that he might exercise a salutary restraint upon him as it regarded the taking of opium. His rheumatic pains had first led him to adopt the use of this insidious drug; and it had, as usual, in time, acquired so much power over him as to render his life miserable. He became the victim of its worst terrors, and so much its slave, that all his resolutions and precautions to break the habit, he regularly himself defeated. At one time a friend of his hired a man to attend him everywhere, and to sternly refuse all his solicitations for, or attempts to get opium ; but this man he cheated at his pleasure. He would send the man on some trifling errand, while on their walks, turn into a druggist's shop, and secure a good stock of the article. Mr. Gillman, who had only himself and wife in his family, was recommended to him as the proper man to exercise a constant, steady, but kindly authority over him in this respect. Coleridge, at the first interview, was so much delighted with the prospect of this house, that he was impatient to get there, and came very characteristically with Christabel in his hand, to send to his host. With the Gillmans Coleridge continued till his death ; and his abode here is too well known to need much mention of it. Here he held a species of soirée, at which numbers of persons were in the habit of attending to listen to his extraordinary conversations, or rather monologues. Those who heard him on these occasions used to declare that you could form no adequate idea of the intellect of the man till you had also heard him. Yet, by some strange neglect, or some wish of his own, these extraordinary harangues were never taken down; which, if they merited the praises conferred on them, is a loss to the world, as well as to his full fame.
Coleridge died on the 25th of July, 1834, being about three months short of sixty-two years of age. He lies buried in Highgate.
The house which Mr. Gillman occupied is now occupied by his successor, Mr. Brendon. There is nothing remarkable about th house except its view. Coleridge's room looked upon a deliciou prospect of wood and meadow, with a gay garden full of colour under the window. When a friend of his first saw him there, by said he thought he had taken his dwelling-place like an abbu There he cultivated his flowers, and had a set of birds for his pen sioners, who came to breakfast with him. He might be seen takin his daily stroll up and down near Highgate, with his black cui and white locks, and a book in his hand : and was a great acquaint ance of the little children. He loved, says the same authority, t read great folios, and to make old voyages with Purchas and Mart Polo; the seas being in good visionary condition, and the vess well stocked with botargoes.
In England there has been of late years a decided tendency t underrate his poetry, and we have even seen his claim to ti character of a poet all but denied. There has been an industrial endeavour to trace almost every fine idea, and fine compositi bearing his name, to some borrowed source, English or foreign. B while the “Hymn in the Vale of Chamouni," and similar poet remain, though Wordsworth always asserted that Coleridge “ner was at Chamouni, nor near it," the character of Coleridge will st continue that of one of the noblest poets of any country. Thon: his philosophy is but little thought of in this country, it is high estimated in America; some of his works are class-books in Universities, and his “Aids to Reflection” has, perhaps, more to any other production, formed the minds of the studious young 11 of the United States. Such is the enthusiasm for the memory Coleridge in the States, that numbers of Americans visit his residence at Highgate, and one of them offered a large price for very doors of his room, that he might set them up in his own ho across the Atlantic,
If the lives of our poets had been written with the sanie attention to the placing of their abodes as clearly before you as that of Mrs. Hemans has been, both by Mr. Chorley and by her own sister, it might have saved me some thousand of miles of travel to visit and see them for myself.
Felicia Dorothea Browne, the future poetess, bearing the familiar name of Mrs. Hemans, was born in Duke-street, Liverpool, on the 25th of September, 1793. The house is still pointed out to strangers, but has nothing besides this event to give it a distinction from other town houses. Her father was a considerable merchant, a native of Ireland. There seems to have been a particular connexion with the state of Venice, for her mother was descended from an old Italian family. Her father was the Imperial and Tuscan Consil at Liverpool. The old name of Mrs. Hemans's maternal ancestry is said to have been Veniero, but had got corrupted to the German name of Wagner. Mrs. Hemans was the fifth of seven children, one of whom died in infancy. Before she was seven years old, her father, having suffered losses in trade, retired from business, and settled at Gwrych, near Abergele, in Denbighshire, close to the sea, in a large, old, solitary mansion, shut in by a range of rocky mountains. Here the family resided nine years, so that the greater and more sensitive part of her girlhood was passed here. She was sixteen when they removed. Here, then, the intense love of nature and of poetry, which dis tinguished her, grew and took its full possession of her. How strong this attachment to the beauty and fresh liberty of nature had become by her eleventh year, was shown by the restraint which she felt in passing a winter in London, at that age, with her father and mother; and her intense longing to be back. Her rambles on the shore, and amongst the hills; her wide range through that old house, with a good library, and the companionship of her brothers and sisters, were all deeply calculated to call forth the spirit of poetry in any heart in which it lay. Her elder sister died; and she turned for companionship to her younger sister, since her biographer, and her younger brother, Claude Scott Browne, who also died young. Her two elder brothers, who with her younger sister only remain, became officers in the army; and this added a strong martial tendency to the spirit of her gepius. Her mother, who was a very noble-minded and accomplished woman, bestowed great care on her education, and her access to books filled her mind with all the food that the young and poetical heart craves for. The Bible and Shakspeare were ber two great books; and the tracas of their influence are conspicuous enough in the genuine piety and the lofty imagery of her writing. She used to read Shakspeare amongst the branches of an old apple tree. In this secret retreat, and in the nut wood, the old arbour and its swing, the post-office tree-a hollow tree, where the family put letters for each other,—the pool where they launched their little ships, used to be referred to by her as belonging to a perfect elysium of childhood. She was fond of dwelling on “the strange creeping awe with which the solitude and stillness of Gwrych inspired ber." It had the reputation of being haunted-another spur to the imaginative faculty. There was a tradition of a fairy greyhound, which kept watch at the end of the avenue, and she used to sally fortb by moonlight to get a sight of it. The sea-shore was, however, her favourite resort; and one of her biographers states that it was s favourite freak of hers, when quite a child, to get up of a summer night, when the servants fancied her safe in bed, and making her way to the water side, indulge in a stolen bathe. The sound of the ocean, and the melancholy sights of wreck and ruin which follow & storm, are said to have made an indelible impression upon her mind, and gave their colouring and imagery
“A sound and a gleam of the moaning sea," to many of her lyrics. In short, a situation cannot be imagined more certain to call forth and foster all the elements of poetry than this of the girlhood of Mrs. Hemans. To the forms of nature, wild, lonely, and awful, the people, with their traditions, their music, and their interesting characteristics, added a crowning spell. The young poetess was rapidly springing in this delightful wilderness into the woman. She is described by her sister, at fifteen, as " in the full glow of that radiant beauty which was destined to fade so early The mantling bloom of her cheeks was shaded by a profusion of natural ringlets, of a rich, golden brown; and the ever-varying