337. To Biggs and Cottle Address: Messrs Biggs and Cottle | Printers | St Augustine's Back | Bristol Single MS. Yale University Lib. Hitherto unpublished. This second communication to the printers is entirely in Coleridge's handwriting and concludes the instructions for the first volume of Lyrical Ballads. It contains a new version of Love, earlier published in the Morning Post, 21 December 1799, under the title, Introduction to the Tale of the Dark Ladie; revisions for The Ancient Mariner; and slight corrections, not included here, for three of Wordsworth's poems. Stamped: Kendal. ____________________ 1 In the manuscript Coleridge wrote out corrections for the first nineteen poems, Dorothy adding part of the directions for the Yew Tree and The Foster-mother's Tale. Only those changes affecting Coleridge's own poems are included here. -594- [Mid- July 1800] [Poem] 21. In room of the Convict print the following Poem. LOVE.] 1 All Thoughts, all Passions, all Delights, Whatever stirs this mortal Frame, All are but Ministers of Love And feed his sacred flame. Oft in my waking dreams do I Live o'er again that happy hour, 2 When midway on the Mount I lay Beside the Ruin'd Tower. The Moonshine stealing o'er the scene Had blended with the Lights of Eve; And she was there, my Hope, my Joy, My own dear Genevieve! She lean'd against the armed Man, The Statue of the armed Knight: She stood and listen'd to my Harp Amid the ling'ring Light. Few Sorrows hath she of her own, My Hope, my Joy, my Gnevieve! She loves me best, whene'er I sing The Songs, that make her grieve. I play'd a soft 3 and doleful Air, I sang an old and moving Story 4 -- An old rude Song, that fitted well The Ruin wild and hoary. She listen'd with a flitting Blush, With downcast Eyes and modest Grace; For well she knew, I could not choose But gaze upon her Face. I told her of the Knight, that wore Upon his Shield a burning Brand; And that 5 for ten long Years he woo'd The Lady of the Land. ____________________ 1 Poems, i. 330. 2 O ever in my waking dreams I dwell upon that happy hour, [Cancelled version of lines 5 and 6 above.] 3 sad [Cancelled word in line above.] 4 Ditty [Cancelled word in line above.] 5 how [Cancelled word in line above.] -595- I told her, how he pin'd: and, ah! The low, the deep, the pleading tone, With which I sang another's Love, Interpreted my own. She listen'd with a flitting Blush, With downcast Eyes and modest Grace; And she forgave me, that I gaz'd Too fondly on her Face! But when I told the cruel scorn Which craz'd this bold and lovely Knight, And that 1 he cross'd the mountain woods Nor rested day nor night; That 2 sometimes from the savage Den, And sometimes from the darksome Shade, And sometimes starting up at once In green and sunny Glade, There came, and look'd him in the face, An Angel beautiful and bright; And that 3 he knew, it was a Fiend, This miserable Knight! And that, 4 unknowing what he did, He leapt amid a murd'rous Band, And sav'd from outrage worse than Death The Lady of the Land; And how she wept and clasp'd his knees, And how she tended him in vain -- And ever 5 strove to expiate The Scorn, that craz'd his Brain. And that 6 she nurs'd him in a Cave; And how his Madness went away When on the yellow forest leaves A dying Man he lay; ____________________ 1 how [Cancelled word in line above.] 2 How [Cancelled word in line above.] 3 how [Cancelled word in line above.] 4 how [Cancelled word in line above.] 5 For still she [Cancelled words in line above.] 6 how [Cancelled word in line above.] -596- His dying Words -- but when I reach'd That tenderest strain of all the Ditty, My falt'ring Voice and pausing Harp Disturb'd her soul with Pity! All Impulses of Soul and Sense Had thrill'd my guileless Genevieve, The Music, and the doleful Tale, The rich and balmy Eve; And Hopes, and Fears that kindle Hope, An undistinguishable Throng! And gentle Wishes long subdued, Subdued and cherish'd long! She wept with pity and delight, She blush'd with love and maiden shame; And, like the murmur of a dream, I heard her breathe my name. 1 Her Bosom heav'd 2 -- she stepp'd aside; As conscious of my Look, she stepp'd -- Then suddenly with timorous eye She fled to me and wept. She half-inclos'd me with her Arms, She press'd me with a meek embrace; And bending back her head look'd up, And gaz'd upon my face. 'Twas partly Love, and partly Fear, And partly 'twas a bashful Art That I might rather feel than see The Swelling of her Heart. I calm'd her fears; and she was calm, And told her love with virgin 3 Pride; And so I won my Genevieve, My bright and beauteous Bride. ____________________ 1 I saw her bosom heave and swell, Heave and swell with inward sighs; I could not choose but love to see Her gentle Bosom rise. [Cancelled stanza above.] [1 heave] rise 2 Her wet cheek glowd -- [Cancelled words in line above. 3 Maiden [Cancelled word in line above.] -597- [Poem] 28 The Rime of the Ancyent Marinere in seven Parts. Instead of this title print the Following -- The Ancient Mariner, A Poet's Reverie. Let the Argument be thus printed --How a Ship, having first sailed to the Equator, was driven by Storms to the cold Country towards the South Pole; how the Ancient Mariner cruelly, and in contempt of the laws of hospitality, killed a Sea-bird; and how he was followed by many and strange Judgements; 1 till having finished this penance1 and in what manner he came back to his own Country. p. 5. -- alter the title, as before. p. 5. First line of first stanza -- for 'ancyent Marinere' print 'ancient Mariner.' p. 6. line 4. for 'Marinere'! print 'Mariner'! p. 6. line 12 for 'Marinere' print '.Mariner.' p. 6. line 16 for 'Marinere' print 'Mariner[']. p. 8. line 8 for 'ancyent' print 'ancient'. p. 8. line 4 for 'Marinere' read 'Mariner.' p. 8. line 5 for 'Listen, Stranger! Storm & wind &c' print 'And now there came the stormy Wind 2 p. 8. line 9 for 'Listen, Stranger! Mist & snow' print 'And now there came both Mist and Snow'. p. 8. line 10. for 'cauld' print 'cold['] p. 8. line 12 for 'Emerauld' print 'Emerald' p. 8. line 15. for Ne-----ne print Nor-nor---- p. 9. line 4. for 'Like Noises of a swound' print A wild and ceaseless Sound. p. 9. line 7. for 'And an it were' print 'As if it had been' p. 9. line 9. For 'Marineres' print 'Mariners.['] p. 9. line 16. For 'Marinere's' print 'Mariner's' p. 10. line 3. For 'fog smoke-white' print 'fog-smoke white' ____________________ 1 Struck out in the MS. 2 Coleridge cancelled this direction to the printers and substituted: p. 8. let the second stanza be thus printed But now the Northwind came more fierce, There came a tempest strong; And southward still for days & weeks Like Chaff we drove along. -598- p. 10. line 5 For 'aneyent Maxinere!' print 'ancient Mariner! p. 11. print the first stanza thus The Sun now rose upon the Right; 1 Out of the Sea came he, Still hid in mist; and on the Left Went down into the Sea. p. 11. line 8. for 'Marinere's' print 'Mariner's' p. 12. line 1. for 'Ne dim ne red, like God's own head' print -- Nor dim nor red, like an Angel's Head. p. 18. line 6. For 'ne -- ne' print 'nor -- nor' p. 13. line 12 For 'Ne' print 'Nor' p. 15. Omit the two lines 'I saw a something in the Sky No bigger than my Fist' and in their stead insert the following separate Stanza So pass'd a weary Time; each Throat Was parch'd, and glaz'd each eye, When, looking westward, I beheld A something in the Sky. At first it seem'd a little speck, &c p. 15. line 9. For 'an' print 'as if' p. 16. after the first stanza thus -- With throat unslak'd, with black lips bak'd, We could nor laugh nor wail, Thro' utter Drouth all dumb we stood Till I bit my arm and suck'd the blood, and cry'd, A sail! a sail! p. 16. last line. but one instead of 'Withouten wind, withouten tide' print 'without or wind or current tide' in the same stanza instead of 'She doth not tack from side' print 'Seel see! (I cry'd) she tacks no morel['] 2 The last stanza of this page to be thus altered -- See! see!(I cry'd) 'she tacks no more! 'Hither to work us Weal 'Without a breeze, without a Tide 'She steddies with upright Keel['] ____________________ 1 Left [Cancelled word in line above.] 2 Prom last line . . . no more -- is struck out in the MS. -599- p. 18. Alter the first stanza of this page into the following: Are those her Ribs, thro' which the Sun Did peer, as thro' a Grate? And are those two all, all her crew, That Woman, and her Mate? p. 18. line 9. For 'They're' print 'They were' p. 18. last stanza alter the words' are -- are -- are -- is -- is -- makes' -into -- 'were -- were -- were -- was -- was -- made'. p. 19. line 10 For 'Oft' print 'Off'. p. 19. line 13. For 'atween' print 'between['] p. 21. line 1. For 'aneyent marinere' print 'ancient Marinerl['] p. 22. line 7. For 'eldritch' print 'ghastly' p. 28. line 2. For 'Ne -- ne' print 'Nor -- nor.['] p. 24. line 2. For 'Like morning Frosts yspread' print 'Like April Hoar-frost spread' p. 26. line 8. For 'yeven' print 'given'. p. 27. line 5. Instead of 'The roaring wind! it roar'd far off' print 'And soon I heard a roaring wind' p. 27. line 9. For 'bursts' print 'burst.' p. 27. line 11. For 'are' print 'were' p. 27. line 18. For 'The Stars dance on between' print 'The wan Stars danc'd between.' p. 27. Print the last stanza thus -- And the coming wind did roar more loud; And the Sails did sigh, like sedge; And the Rain pour'd down from one black cloud -- The Moon was at it's edge. p. 28. Print the two first lines thus - The thick black Cloud was cleft, and still The Moon was at it's side: p. 28. line 4. For'falls' print 'fell'. p. 28. Alter the two first lines of the second Stanza thus --/ The loud 1 Wind never reach'd the Ship, Yet now the Ship mov'd on! p. 28. line 11. For 'Ne -- ne' -- print 'Nor -- nor' -- p. 28. line 16. For 'Marineres' print 'Mariners' p. 29. -- Omit the 7th & 8th lines, 'And I quak'd &c' 2 p. 29. before the words 'The Day-light dawn'd' insert the following Stanza -- ____________________ 1 strong [Cancelled word in line above.] 2 For the omitted lines see Poems, ii. 1039, lines 387-8. -600- 'I fear thee, ancient Mariner!' Be calm 1," thou Wedding-Guest! 'Twas not those 2 Souls, that fled in pain Which to their corses came again, But a troop of Spirits blest: and alter the words, 'The Day-light dawn'd' -into 'For when it dawn'd,' P. 30. line 2. For 'Lavrock' print 'Sky-lark' P. 31. -- Omit the whole of this page. 3 P. 36. Line 6 -- For 'Withouten wave or wind?' print 'Without or wave or wind?' P. 36. Last line for 'Marinere's' print 'Mariner's'. P. 37. line 11. For 'een' print 'eyes' P. 37. line 12 For 'Ne' print 'Nor' P. 37. Alter the last Stanza of this page into the following -- And 4 now this Spell was snapt: once more I view'd the Ocean green, And look'd far forth, yet little saw Of what had else been seen. P. 88. line 1. For 'lonely' print 'lonesome' P. 88. line 8. For 'Ne -- ne' print 'Nor -- nor.' P. 40. Omit five stanzas here -- namely, the whole of this page, and the first Stanza of p. 41. 5 P. 42. line 13. For 'Eftsones' print 'But soon.' P. 48. Omit the first Stanza of this page. 6 P. 44. 1. 4. For 'Marineres' print 'Mariners'. P. 44. 1. 5. For 'Contree' print 'countrée.['] P. 45. line 1. for 'ne'rd' print 'ner'd' P. 46. line 6. For 'Ne -- ne' print 'Nor -- nor' P. 48. -- Alter the last stanza into the following Since then at an uncertain hour That Agony returns, And till my ghastly Tale is told, This 7 Heart within me burns. P. 50. line 12. Omit the comma after 'loveth well['] P. 50. line 14. Omit the comma after 'loveth best' ____________________ 1 Fear not [Cancelled words In line above.] 2 the (Cancelled word in line above.) 3 For the omitted stanzas see Poem, ii. 1040, lines 862-77. 4 But [Cancelled word in line above.] 5 For the omitted stanzas see Powa, ii. 1043, lines 481-502. 6 For the omitted stanza see Poems, ii. 1044, lines 581-6. 7 My [Cancelled word in line above.] -601- P. 51. line 1. For 'Marinere' print 'Mariner' 1 Directions will be sent by the next post for the second Volume -in the meantime, Mr Biggs will be pleased to make all convenient Dispatch with the first. He will probably find it advisable to take a printed Copy of the Lyrical Ballads, & correct it himself throughout, according to the directions in this & the preceding letter -- ____________________ 1 Despite these careful revisions, Wordsworth seems to have retained his objections to The Ancient Mariner; and in sending off to Biggs and Cottle the last two paragraphs of the Preface and a long note defending The Thorn, he added the following comment on Coleridge's poem, revealing thereby a critical blindness and a disregard for the feelings of a fellow poet. The sheet containing it must have been posted circa 1 Oct., since Dorothy Wordsworth says she wrote out the manuscript on 30 Sept. and corrected it the next day ( Journals, i. 62). Coleridge was not at Grasmere from 26 Sept. to 4 Oct., this being the time of his baby's serious illness, and I doubt that he saw Wordsworth's ungracious note before it appeared in print. I cannot refuse myself the gratification of informing such Readers as may have been pleased with this poem, or with any part of it, that they owe their pleasure in some sort to me; as the Author was himself very desirous that it should be suppressed. This wish had arisen from a consciousness of the defects of the poem, & from a knowledge that many persons had been much displeased with it. The Poem of my Friend has indeed great defects; first, that the principal person has no distinct character, either in his profession of Mariner, or as a human being who having been long under the controul of supernatural impressions might be supposed himself to partake of something supernatural: secondly, that he does not act, but is continually acted upon: thirdly, that the events having no necessary connection do not produce each other; and lastly, that the imagery is somewhat too laboriously accumulated. Yet the poem contains many delicate touches of passion, and indeed the passion is every where true to nature; a great number of the stanzas present beautiful images & are expressed with unusual felicity of language; and the versification, though the metre is itself unfit for long poems, is harmonious and artfully varied, exhibiting the utmost powers of that metre, & every variety of which it is capable. It therefore appeared to me that these several merits (the first of which, namely that of the passion, is of the highest kind,) gave to the poem a value which is not often possessed by better poems. On this account I requested of my Friend to permit me to republish it. (MS. Yale University Lib.) Lamb's strictures on Wordsworth's note may account for its omission after 1800. 'I totally differ from your idea that the Marinere should have had a character and profession. . . . The Ancient Marinere undergoes such Trials, as overwhelm and bury all individuality or memory of what he was. . . . Your other observation is I think as well a little unfounded: the Marinere from being conversant in supernatural events has acquired a supernatural and strange cast of phrase, eye, appearance, &c. which frighten the wedding guest. . . . I am hurt and vexed that you should think it necessary, with a prose apology, to open the eyes of dead men that cannot see.' Lamb Letters, i. 240. -602-