are placed the full text of OSORIO (the first draft of REMORSE), included in
no former edition of Coleridge's Works; the full text of the Greek ode with
which he gained the Browne Medal in 1792, hitherto unknown; other
compositions which did not seem to demand a more prominent position;
and, finally, a collection of 'Titles, Prefaces, Contents, etc.' ('APPENDIX
K'), which will, I hope, serve all the purposes of a more formal biblio-

That no reader of the poems may be unnecessarily or unwillingly dis-
turbed, the editor's 'NOTES' have been placed at the end of the volume.
Some readers, he fears, may share his own opinion that they are too
voluminous, but it is hoped that, on the whole, they may be found useful, not
only to the student of the poems, but to those who wish to study more
closely the poet's life. Few of his verses, and few of the alterations he
made in them from time to time, are without some bearing on his loves, or
friendships, or adventures; and this I have endeavoured to bring out as
far as my limited knowledge could serve.

As regards the arrangement of the poems, it is in the main chrono-

logical. In 1828 and 1829, Coleridge made a kind of classification under

the headings, 'Juvenile Poems,''Poems occasioned by Political Events,'

'Love Poems,' etc., but it was of the roughest and least consistent descrip-

tion. Had I felt any scruples in departing from it, they would have been

dispersed by the following deliverance of the poet on the subject, which

shows, both by its date and its phrasing, that in the edition of 1834

the old classification was adhered to in opposition to his own better

judgment :-

'After all you [H. N. Coleridge] can say, I still think the chronological

order the best for arranging a poet's works. All your divisions are in

particular instances inadequate, and they destroy the interest which arises

from watching the progress, maturity, and even the decay of genius.'

(Table Talk, Jan. 1, 1834.)

A principle could hardly be stated more uncompromisingly, or more

authoritatively, but, in practice, it is rarely wise to apply anything of the
kind quite rigidly. For convenience sake, the DRAMATIC WORKS have been
placed by themselves, apart from the POEMS; and, for reasons explained in
theNotes,' a few allied poems have been grouped; but these departures from
the settled order have been so rare as to be hardly worthy of mention.
I cannot, of course, pretend to complete success in the attempt to fix

the dates of all the poems, but no pains have been spared in the endeavour; and in all doubtful cases a '?' has been attached to the dates conjecturally assigned. I think, however, that in the great majority of instances the true years have been ascertained.

As regards the INTRODUCTION, I believe I shall be readily excused for making it, not an estimate of Coleridge as a poet, but a plain narrative of the events of his life. Explanations have been offered when such seemed necessary or desirable, but comment, especially moralising, has been studiously avoided, I readily and gratefully acknowledge my indebtedness, in varying measure, to all the biographical sketches which have hitherto appeared. If I venture to claim for my own a position to some small extent independent, it is because, for its compilation, all the old material has been carefully sifted, and much of it corrected from sadly misused original documents; while I have been privileged to make use of a large quantity of important material which is either absolutely new, or which was unavailable to my predecessors. Coleridge's biography may be looked for in due time from the hands of his grandson, Mr. E. H. Coleridge, who has been engaged for some time past on its preparation; but I believe that in the narrative I have compiled there is enough that is new, not only as regards the facts, but in the order in which old and new are presented, to render it worthy of the attention of any who may be willing to reconsider their estimate of its subject. Such readers, of course, will not be satisfied with this necessarily meagre outline, and it is primarily for their convenience that the pages have been encumbered, somewhat unduly perhaps, with citations of authorities. The general reader will be pleased to ignore all the foot-notes in the INTRODUCTION to which the figures 1, 2, 3, etc., are attached, giving attention only to those bearing the signs *, †, etc.

In the NOTES I have found frequent opportunity of offering my sincere thanks for help rendered in the preparation of this work; to name all those to whom I am indebted for kind services, were I able to make the list complete, would be tedious; but I cannot conclude without special acknowledgment of the unwearied kindness and generosity of my friend Mr. Ernest Hartley Coleridge, to whom all that is worthy in the editorial part of this volume owes more than I can adequately express. For nothing am I under greater obligation to him than for permission to use as freely as I have done, and with so much advantage, the Letters from the Lake Poets, which he edited and annotated for the daughters of their recipient, the late

Mr. Daniel Stuart of the Morning Post and the Courier.

The volume was prepared and printed exclusively for private circulation, and the copyright of the contents is vested in Mr. Coleridge.

Portraits of Coleridge are numerous. To my mind, in none does he look very like a poet except in that which has been selected to form the frontispiece to the present volume. It has been reproduced directly from the original, now in the National Portrait Gallery. This belonged to Cottle, and was admirably engraved in his Early Recollections, where he thus writes of it: This portrait of Mr. Coleridge was taken in oils by a Mr. [Peter] Vandyke (a descendant of the great Vandyke). He was invited over from Holland by the late Sir Joshua Reynolds, to assist him in his portraits, particularly in the drapery department; in which capacity he remained with him many years. Mr. Vandyke afterwards settled in Bristol, and obtained great and just celebrity for his likenesses. His portrait of Mr. Coleridge did him great credit, as a better likeness was never taken; and it has the additional advantage of exhibiting Mr. C. in one of his animated conversations, the expression of which the painter has in good degree preserved.' Hancock's portrait of the following year has been more frequently engraved, and is therefore more familiar. Cottle says it was much admired at the time, and has an additional interest from having been drawn when Mr. C.'s spirits were in a state of depression, on account of the failure of the Watchman.


March 23, 1893.




By his first wife,

SAMUEL TAYLOR COLERIDGE was born at the Vicarage of Ottery St. Mary, in Devonshire, on the 21st October 1772. His father was the Rev. John Coleridge, Vicar of the Parish, and Chaplain-Priest and Master of its Free Grammar School (commonly called the 'King's School '), founded by Henry VIII. His mother was the Vicar's second wife, and her maiden name was Anne Bowdon. Mary Lendon, the Vicar had three daughters, who were all alive in 1797; and by his second, nine sons (of whom Samuel Taylor was the youngest) and one daughter. The poet's paternal grandfather, who had been a considerable woollen trader in Southmolton,' fell into poor circumstances when his son was about sixteen (1735), and John was then supported at school by a friend of the family. When, in 1748,1 he matriculated at Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge, he was already married, and on leaving the University, without a degree, he settled as a schoolmaster at Southampton, where his wife died. Having remarried, in 1760 he removed to Ottery St. Mary, having in that year obtained both the living and the mastership of the school. At that time, besides a son who died in infancy, there were two children of his second marriage-John who died in 1786, a captain H.E.I.C.S., and William who died in 1780, both unmarried. In 1760 was born James, who entered the army and married one of the co-heiresses of Robert Duke, of Otterton, Esquire. James's eldest son became Sir John Taylor Coleridge (better known as 'Mr. Justice Coleridge'), the father of the present Lord Chief Justice. James's third son was Henry Nelson Coleridge, who married his cousin Sara, the poet's only daughter. The Vicar's next two sons, Edward and George, both took orders. The latter succeeded (though not immediately) to the Grammar School, and to the private boarding-school which his father had carried on. The seventh son, Luke Herman, became a surgeon, but died at an early age, in 1790, leaving but one child, a son, who became in 1824 the first Bishop of Barbadoes. Next came Ann ('Nancy '), whose early death, coming soon after that of Luke, deeply affected the young poet.2 The eighth son was Francis

1 When about 29 years of age, not '20' as stated by S. T. C. in his letter to Poole, Biog. Lit. 1847, ii. 314.

2 See On receiving an Account that his only Sister's Death was inevitable, and the poem next

following, p. 13.
See also To a Friend who
had declared his Intention of writing no more
Poetry, p. 69. 'Nancy' died in her twenty-fifth,
not in her twenty-first year, as misprinted in
Note 22,'

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