Page:The Library, volume 5, series 3.djvu/241

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Third Series,
No. 19, Vol. V.
July, 1914.


THE LIBRARY.


AN EARLY APPRECIATION OF
WILLIAM BLAKE.


INTRODUCTORY NOTE.

ON 29th September, 1809, closed that unique exhibition at 28 Broad Street, Golden Square, which is known to all admirers of William Blake by the Descriptive Catalogue and by some, alas! not all, of the pictures therein shown. Among the few who went and wondered was the diarist, Henry Crabb Robinson, who purchased no fewer than four copies of the Descriptive Catalogue, one of which he presented to Charles Lamb, thereby evoking that famous praise of Blake as Chaucerian, painter and critic, which must have sounded oddly in the ears of that unmystical generation.[1]

  1. Lamb's copy, as Mr. Lucas tells us, was afterwards bound up with Elia's 'Confessions of a Drunkard,' Southey's 'Wat Tyler,' and the 'Poems' of Rochester and Lady Winchelsea. A strange company truly, but characteristic of the owner and his hap-hazard library.