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Horror like Thunder

Germaine Greer: Lucy Hutchinson, 21 June 2001

Order and Disorder 
by Lucy Hutchinson, edited by David Norbrook.
Blackwell, 272 pp., £55, January 2001, 0 631 22061 5
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... and a quaker’. In becoming a royal servant Apsley followed his father’s calling; his sister Lucy clung fast to the Parliamentarian loyalties of the St Johns. Her husband, John Hutchinson, was one of the signatories of the death warrant of Charles I. Apsley was no poet; his sister, who is best known for her memoir of ...

Reason, Love and Life

Christopher Hill, 20 November 1980

The Letters of John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester 
edited by Jeremy Treglown.
Blackwell, 275 pp., £21, September 1980, 9780631128311
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... typically – he does not seem to have got beyond the first fifty lines. His senior contemporary Lucy Hutchinson translated all six books, which she then suppressed. What was it in the great Epicurean that fascinated both the lecherous peer and the very Puritan wife of a regicide? A complete edition of Rochester’s letters thus arouses ...

Democratic Sublime

Derek Hirst: Writing the English republic, 19 August 1999

Writing the English Republic: Poetry, Rhetoric and Politics 1627-60 
by David Norbrook.
Cambridge, 509 pp., £40, January 1999, 0 521 63275 7
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... masculine concerns of national politics. They will await the more eagerly his forthcoming study of Lucy Hutchinson, who, not content with protecting her regicide husband from the scaffold, wrote her own Creation epic. The case for the republican conscience resounds most eloquently in the impressive coda to this book, in which Norbrook vindicates the ...

Lamb’s Tails

Christopher Driver, 19 June 1986

All Manners of Food: Eating and Taste in England and France from the Middle Ages to the Present 
by Stephen Mennell.
Blackwell, 380 pp., £14.95, October 1985, 0 631 13244 9
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Curye on Inglysch: English Culinary Manuscripts of the 14th Century including ‘The Forme of Cury’ 
edited by Constance Hieatt and Sharon Butler.
Oxford, for the Early English Text Society, 224 pp., £6.50, April 1985, 0 19 722409 1
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The English Cookbook 
by Victor Gordon.
Cape, 304 pp., £12.50, November 1985, 0 224 02300 4
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... of Oliver Cromwell’s widow – was published only to be lampooned, and another Civil War widow, Lucy Hutchinson, was constrained to complain of the ‘court caterpillars’ who could present her husband as a life-denier in spite of his affection for music and dancing and his ‘rule of temperance in meat, drink, apparel and all those things that may be ...

New Model Criticism

Colin Burrow: Writing Under Cromwell, 19 June 2008

Literature and Politics in Cromwellian England: John Milton, Andrew Marvell, Marchamont Nedham 
by Blair Worden.
Oxford, 458 pp., December 2007, 978 0 19 923081 5
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... focus on Marvell’s ‘Horatian Ode’, ‘Tom May’s Death’, with perhaps some Waller, Lucy Hutchinson or Milton’s prose thrown in, and a dash of ‘The Character of Holland’. Out goes the Marvell of ‘The Garden’, or the ‘Acquisition of Love’, even the tenderly concealed political agonies of ‘The Nymph Complaining for the Death ...

What was left out

Lawrence Rainey: Eliot’s Missing Letters, 3 December 2009

The Letters of T.S. Eliot, Vol. I: 1898-1922 
edited by Valerie Eliot and Hugh Haughton.
Faber, 871 pp., £35, November 2009, 978 0 571 23509 4
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... are minor compensations, of course, such as Eliot’s dancing. ‘One day,’ Vivien urges Mary Hutchinson, ‘you really must try Tom’s Negro rag-time. I know you’d love it.’The marmoreal lustre of our received image of Eliot is dimmed by this unrelenting catalogue of blunders. The result contradicts the glossier image of Eliot presented by the ...

Looking back

John Sutherland, 22 May 1980

by Julian Barnes.
Cape, 176 pp., £4.95, March 1980, 0 224 01762 4
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The Bleeding Heart 
by Marilyn French.
Deutsch, 412 pp., £6.50, May 1980, 9780233972343
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by Jeremy Leven.
Hutchinson, 544 pp., £6.95, April 1980, 0 09 141250 1
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... have to employ the straight talk of nonfiction. But then she won’t get her two million dollars. Hutchinson have laid the ground for Jeremy Leven’s Creator with a series of teasing advertisements stating: ‘Harry Wolper has kept his wife in a jar for 30 years.’ Creator is a zany book with two main narrative threads. The ostensible hero is a biologist ...

Wordsworth and the Well-Hidden Corpse

Marilyn Butler, 6 August 1992

The Lyrical Ballads: Longman Annotated Texts 
edited by Michael Mason.
Longman, 419 pp., £29.99, April 1992, 0 582 03302 0
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Strange Power of Speech: Wordsworth, Coleridge and Literary Possession 
by Susan Eilenberg.
Oxford, 278 pp., £30, May 1992, 0 19 506856 4
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The Politics of Nature: Wordsworth and Some Contemporaries 
by Nicholas Roe.
Macmillan, 186 pp., £35, April 1992, 0 333 52314 8
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... emerging in full glory in 1800 in ‘Nutting’, ‘Michael’ and the two groups known as the ‘Lucy’ and ‘Matthew’ poems. The essential Wordworth shouldn’t be seen as a recorder of external nature but as a poet of epiphanies, or moments of intense pleasure in animal life which are ‘phenomenologically simple’ and almost untenable. Thus ...

Wordsworth in Love

Jonathan Wordsworth, 15 October 1981

... by the French War until the Peace of Amiens in 1803 (by which time the poet was engaged to Mary Hutchinson). Their child was baptised in Orleans Cathedral on 15 December 1792, and it is significant that she took her father’s name – or something like it: Anne-Caroline Wordswodsth. Annette’s two surviving letters (confiscated by the French police in ...

Bumming and Booing

John Mullan: William Wordsworth, 5 April 2001

Wordsworth: A Life 
by Juliet Barker.
Viking, 971 pp., £25, October 2000, 9780670872138
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The Hidden Wordsworth 
by Kenneth Johnston.
Pimlico, 690 pp., £15, September 2000, 0 7126 6752 0
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Disowned by Memory: Wordsworth’s Poetry of the 1790s 
by David Bromwich.
Chicago, 186 pp., £9.50, April 2000, 0 226 07556 7
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... address Dorothy: ‘Tintern Abbey’ (where she is certainly present) and ‘Nutting’ and the Lucy poems (where the discovery of his intense feelings for her rather depends on the reader’s prior decision to find them). Barker sticks with the evidence of journals and correspondence, though some of this testimony – Wordsworth placing his wife’s ...

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