William Gifford to George Ellis (12/13/1813)

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William Gifford to George Ellis
Dec. 13, 1813
[ transcription conventions ]

British Library Add. 28099 ff.119-1201


London Dec. thirteenth 1813

George Ellis Esq

Sunning Hill






Post stamp:

Free / 13 Dec 13 / 1813


My dear Ellis

Your letter has made me very happy – and I mean to proceed to Murray’s forthwith & dispatch the bride of Abydos to you2 – who, by the way, is not a bride – unless after the manner of Monk Lewis’s spectres "since Death, not Romeo, hath her maiden head" 3

I talked of sending you a line by Canning – but instead of proceeding to Sunning Hill he struck – into the beautiful oblique – and scrambled thro mud & clay to Hinckley. I merely wished to consult you about a proper person for Mad. De Stael – I trust she is now in good hands.4

The Revw. which my illness delayed, is out of the press, & I suppose will be ready for our friends in a day or two – though this weather is not favourable for [baying] &c. Our next No. Deo volente, will not I hope, be so tardy.

There are some sinister accounts afloat about poor Scott. I shall be truly sorry to find them correct. They say that he has lost a good deal of money by his connection with Ballantyne.5

I do not wonder at your talking of this campaign, or even of the last – I, who see no body, sit and talk of it to my fire, and grow enthusiastic, & prophecy from the position of the black & red cinders in the grate – But we also have our triumphs, & shall not be easy till someone points out the correctness of our line of politics, in a good article – the Edin. Revw. Has something for it, but sheer impudence, & brazening it out.

I am delighted at your complaint of darkness at Sunning Hill. I foolishly thought that all was light & sunshine in the country; & looked through the mist and gloom of James St "with jealous leer malign"6 at your [ ? ] advantages:—At present I am much eased.

God bless you, my dear Ellis

Ever yours affectionately

Wm Gifford