Letter from Edmund Gosse to Thomas Hardy, 22 March 1887

[Page 1]

29. Delamere Terrace

Westborne Square W.

My dear Hardy,

Very many thanks for the gift of "The Woodlanders".

I was so much disgusted with the way the critics treated "The Mayor" that I have [got] ^gone^ in this time for an arrant piece of log-rolling. I have persuaded the "Saturday Review" to let me notice the "Woodlanders" & I have stirred up Coventry [Page 2] Patmore to make the same attempt in the St. James's Gazette. If he succeeds you will have, at all events, two conscientious reviewers. Last time it did not seem to me that you had one.

I have formed an idea that Little Hintock is more or less a study of Mintern Parva. I dare say I [Page 3] am quite wrong. I wonder if Buckbury-Fitzpiers is not a kind of hybrid between Okeford-Fitzpaine & Buckland-Newton? Of course Sherton Abbas is Sherborne? If one of these guesses is wrong, they all are, for they fit together like a puzzle.

Your book is one [Page 4] of the most beautiful that you have written. The first volume starts off rather stiffly, but the second is superb, as warm and rich as a Titian. I have not yet read the third.

Ever sincerely yours

Edmund Gosse

How many details have I already heard from your lips!