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Mr Lion, Mr Cock and Mr Cat

Roger Lonsdale, 5 April 1990

A Form of Sound Words: The Religious Poetry of Christopher Smart 
by Harriet Guest.
Oxford, 293 pp., £35, October 1989, 0 19 811744 2
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... Harriet Guest’s starting-point is Donald Davie’s suggestion in 1958 that Christopher Smart might be considered ‘the greatest poet between Pope and Wordsworth’. Her intelligent and carefully argued book does not deliver quite the far-reaching reassessment of Smart’s status Davie must have had in mind. He wanted Smart to be judged over the whole range of his poetic output, both conventional and unconventional, ‘light and ribald as well as devotional, urbane or tender as well as sublime ...

The Strange Case of John Bampfylde

Roger Lonsdale, 3 March 1988

... If John Bampfylde has any continuing public existence, it must be as the man on the right in this unusual double portrait by Joshua Reynolds. An interested enquirer might learn that Bampfylde was a minor poet of the later 18th century and, in the absence of much hard information, encounter what is scarcely more than a striking anecdote of frustrated love and subsequent insanity ...

Some More Sea

Patrick O’Brian, 10 September 1992

The Oxford Book of the Sea 
edited by Jonathan Raban.
Oxford, 524 pp., £17.95, April 1992, 9780192141972
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... 18th-Century Verse and 18th-Century Women Poets, both edited with great skill and erudition by Roger Lonsdale, and Travel Verse, by Kevin Crossley-Holland. When I say ‘read them’ I mean I have dipped copiously, as one usually does with anthologies, sometimes taking years to digest the whole. They all addressed a finite but considerable field ...

Tit for Tat

Margaret Anne Doody, 21 December 1989

Eighteenth-Century Women Poets: An Oxford Anthology 
edited by Roger Lonsdale.
Oxford, 555 pp., £20, September 1989, 0 19 811769 8
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... The publication of this anthology is an important event – as significant as the appearance of Roger Lonsdale’s earlier Oxford Book of 18th-Century Verse, that unmarmoreal volume. As our battle of the books is waged, and canons to the left and right volley and thunder, this dignified Fellow of Balliol has done more to change our view of the 18th century than many avowed canon-chargers with more ostensibly up-to-date artillery ...

Heroes

Pat Rogers, 6 November 1986

Hume and the Heroic Portrait: Studies in 18th-Century Imagery 
by Edgar Wind, edited by Jaynie Anderson.
Oxford, 139 pp., £29.50, May 1986, 0 19 817371 7
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Augustan Studies: Essays in honour of Irvin Ehrenpreis 
edited by Douglas Lane Patey and Timothy Keegan.
University of Delaware Press, 270 pp., £24.50, May 1986, 9780874132724
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The 18th Century: The Intellectual and Cultural Context of English Literature 1700-1789 
by James Sambrook.
Longman, 290 pp., £15.95, April 1986, 0 582 49306 4
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... qualities of sense and sensibility the commemoratee would have relished. There is, for instance, Roger Lonsdale, presenting with due flourish a work by the painter and art theorist Jonathan Richardson the elder, and illuminating Richardson’s own little-known life (down to a new birth-year) as well as the career of his young friend Pope. ...

Daddying

Alethea Hayter, 14 September 1989

Frances Burney: The Life in the Works 
by Margaret Anne Doody.
Cambridge, 441 pp., £30, April 1989, 9780521362580
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... face of this severe judgment on Dr Burney’s part in his daughter’s story, that his biographer Roger Lonsdale saw Fanny Burney as the villainess in her father’s story. In Dr Charles Burney he accused her of conscious dishonesty and ruthless egoism in her Memoirs of her father, in which she was found guilty of having schemed – by ...

Docility Rampant

Margaret Anne Doody, 31 October 1996

Lady Mary Wortley Montagu: Romance Writings 
edited by Isobel Grundy.
Oxford, 276 pp., £14.50, August 1996, 0 19 812288 8
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... to be formal, and I to be proud ...       Version in 18th-Century Women Poets, edited by Roger Lonsdale The chicken and champagne aspects of life, the playful and the erotic, pertain to the ‘private’ and not to the social existence. Women have to hide their erotic feelings, keeping them only for private life and unofficial intervals. It is ...

A Favourite of the Laws

Ruth Bernard Yeazell, 13 June 1991

Married Women’s Separate Property in England, 1660-1833 
by Susan Staves.
Harvard, 290 pp., £27.95, April 1990, 0 674 55088 9
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The Bluestocking Circle: Women, Friendship and the Life of the Mind in 18th-century England 
by Sylvia Harcstark Myers.
Oxford, 342 pp., £35, August 1990, 0 19 811767 1
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Portrait of a Friendship: Drawn from New Letters of James Russell Lowell to Sybella Lady Lyttleton 1881-1891 
by Alethea Hayter.
Michael Russell, 267 pp., £16.95, September 1990, 0 85955 167 9
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Fierce Communion: Family and Community in Early America 
by Helena Wall.
Harvard, 243 pp., £23.95, August 1990, 0 674 29958 2
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... marriage in ‘Modern Manners’, a poem first published in 1799 and reprinted recently by Roger Lonsdale in his Oxford anthology of Eighteenth Century Women Poets, she took for granted that the most direct route to separate property was to marry for money and chuck the husband. In ‘former times’, according to a speaker named ...

Tibbles

Barbara Everett, 17 October 1985

Alexander Pope 
by Maynard Mack.
Yale, 975 pp., £15.95, August 1985, 0 300 03391 5
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Pope’s ‘Essay on Man’ 
by A.D. Nuttall.
Allen and Unwin, 250 pp., £15, February 1984, 0 04 800017 5
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The Last and Greatest Art: Some Unpublished Poetical Manuscripts of Alexander Pope 
by Maynard Mack.
Associated University Presses, 454 pp., £48.95, June 1984, 0 87413 183 9
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The New Oxford Book of 18th-Century Verse 
by Roger Lonsdale.
Oxford, 870 pp., £15, November 1984, 0 19 214122 8
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Collected in Himself: Essays Critical, Biographical and Bibliographical on Pope and Some of his Contemporaries 
by Maynard Mack.
Associated University Presses, 569 pp., £26.50, March 1983, 0 87413 182 0
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... verse. Certainly the culture was one that, in theory, adored and admired poetry. No reader of Roger Lonsdale’s New Oxford Book of 18th-Century Verse – a collection too large and too rich to be more than mentioned here – can remain ignorant as to how far through Augustan society at large the passion for poetry spread. The major difference ...

Malice

John Mullan: Fanny Burney, 23 August 2001

Fanny Burney: A Biography 
by Claire Harman.
Flamingo, 464 pp., £8.99, October 2001, 0 00 655036 3
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Fanny Burney: Her Life 
by Kate Chisholm.
Vintage, 347 pp., £7.99, June 1999, 0 09 959021 2
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Faithful Handmaid: Fanny Burney at the Court of King George III 
by Hester Davenport.
Sutton, 224 pp., £25, June 2000, 0 7509 1881 0
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... a canonisation of him and a celebration of her own literary career. (‘Fanny’s last novel’, Roger Lonsdale called it in his biography of Charles Burney.) Yet she recovered and left to us a hoard of paper that makes Burney a biographer’s dream: the letters and journals that she lugged back and forth across the Channel, and which at present ...

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