271a. Robert Bloomfield to Samuel Jackson Pratt, 11 October 1811


271a. Robert Bloomfield to Samuel Jackson Pratt, 11 October 1811* 

London. Oct 11. 1811

To Mr Pratt

Dear Sir

Your valuable present came to hand safely and I have the pleasing task of thanking you for a most interesting work  [1] which arouses the mingled feelings of admiration and regret that I know not which preponderates, or which to indulge most.

You may remember that I never but once saw Mr Blacket, and then he was far gone in that dreadful disorder which so often robs the world of the brightest examples of intellect. To say that I foresaw the approach of his dissolution is saying but little, But I thank you again for this further developement of his character and powers.

The little Snow-drop you bring forward, and whose verses are so truly interesting has my wonder and my affection. [2]  A mind so imbued, and so constituted could it go on to advanced life at the same ratio would yeild a Harvest from which you might indeed be proud to glean.

Mr Holloway begs me to say that he has recieved no letter from Mr Pratt of so late a date as you <that> mention’d by the letter, and that he immediately replied to the last. He seems anxious to remove every unpleasant impression that may have been made from this apparent inattention, and <with> sincere respects desires me to <say> that his address is either at ‘the East India House’, or ‘No 7 Whitefield Street, Tabernacle Row, Finsbury’.

I beg your acceptance of my last little vol. [3]  and wish you would read it as its short lines and rapid succession of object seems to demand, It might be called ‘the recollection of ten days’. Perhaps I shall be abused by the Criticks for daring to trifle in such a scene, and for calling the Hills of Monmouth by the more sonorous name of Mountain. You are at liberty to make them Mole-hills, and so are they. I hope this will find you at Dr Mavors, [4]  of whom I have no knowledge but by name, though I have it in contemplation to get his Voyages &c for my children. With a sympathetic feeling for your Rhumatism, and with great Respect, I am Sir

Your Humble St

Robt Bloomfield

Amongst my many applicants, and you will wonder perhaps that I should have any, the young man who leaves me the enclosed is apparently capable of writing very respectably at least, He has been brought up in the medical line, and is endeavouring to an appointment in the Army, has sufferd much distress but whether from misfortune or imprudence I know not. I send his prospectus because I promised that I would, and must leave you to be the judge of what is to be done.

* Bedfordshire and Luton Archives and Records BACK

[1] Harvest Home: Consisting of Supplementary Gleanings, Original Dramas and Poems, Contributions of Literary Friends, 3 vols (1805). BACK

[2] In Harvest Home, II, 213, Pratt included verses on the Snow Drop by ‘my Sybil’. BACK

[3] The Banks of Wye. BACK

[4] Dr William Fordyce Mavor (1758-1837), an educationalist and contributor to the Monthly Magazine who edited, with Pratt, Classical English Poetry for the Use of Schools (1801). BACK