Red letter day at Wordsworth House

10 Sep
A young visitor puts pen to paper at Wordsworth House

Writing by candlelight: A young visitor puts pen to paper at Wordsworth House

We’re all very excited about our new exhibit – a letter written by William and Dorothy Wordsworth in August 1805 to their friend Lady Beaumont, which is on display in the house. It’s wonderful to see their actual handwriting and to read their thoughts.

There are some very touching passages, particularly when William shares his poem To the Daisy, written in remembrance of his brother John, who drowned when the ship he captained went down.

In the part written by Dorothy, she recalls their early childhood spent in the house and talks about my lovely garden. She mentions the terrace, where she and William played, remarking that it was “a spot which I remember as vividly as if I had been there but the other day”.

She explains that she left the house to live with relatives, aged just six, after their mother’s death, and didn’t return until a visit at the age of 23. Then, she found: “The terrace-walk buried and choked up with the old privot [sic] hedge which had formerly been most beautiful, roses and privot intermingled – the same hedge where the sparrows were used to build their nests.”

I wish she could see the terrace as it is now, with the privet and wild roses intermingling once again and our new summerhouse, with William’s poetry wafting on the breeze from the audio unit – I think she would love it.

Documents on display at Wordsworth House

Paperwork: Documents on display in the office at Wordsworth House

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