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[313] as it was long afterward in Wordsworth's case,

And captive Good attending Captain Ill,

that then even he, the poet to whom, of all others, life seems to have been dearest, as it was also the fullest of enjoyment, ‘tired of all these,’ had nothing for it but to cry for ‘restful Death.’

Keats, to all appearance, accepted his ill fortune courageously. He certainly did not overestimate ‘Endymion,’ and perhaps a sense of humor which was not wanting in him may have served as a buffer against the too importunate shock of disappointment. ‘He made Ritchie promise,’ says Haydon, ‘he would carry his “Endymion” to the great desert of Sahara and fling it in the midst.’ On the 9th October, 1818, he writes to his publisher, Mr. Hessey, ‘I cannot but feel indebted to those gentlemen who have taken my part. As for the rest, I begin to get acquainted with my own strength and weakness. Praise or blame has but a momentary affection the man whose love of beauty in the abstract makes him a severe critic of his own works. My own domestic criticism has given me pain without comparison beyond what Blackwood or the Quarterly could inflict; and also, when I feel I am right, no external praise can give me such a glow as my own solitary reperception and ratification of what is fine. J. S. is perfectly right in regard to “ the slipshod Endymion.” That it is so is no fault of mine. No! though it may sound a little paradoxical, it is as good as I had power to make it by myself. Had I been nervous about its being a perfect piece, and with that view asked advice and trembled over every page, it would not have been written; for it is not in my nature to fumble. I will write independently. I have written independently without judgment. I may write independently and with

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Endymion (2)
William Wordsworth (1)
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