BARS Exchange

BARS Exchange

Aggregated blogs on Romantic Studies – please click through to read full posts.

Archive for August 2015

2015 Hazlitt Day School

By Matthew Sangster

William Hazlitt

Please see below for notice of this year’s Hazlitt Day School, which will take place in London on October 10th. As usual, some excellent speakers.

The 2015 Annual Hazlitt Lecture and the 14th Hazlitt Day School will this year be dedicated to Hazlitt’s journalism, and will take place at University College London on Saturday 10 October 2015.

The Annual Lecture, entitled ‘Hazlitt’s Political Hatred’, will be given by Kevin Gilmartin of the California Institute of Technology from 4pm at the Gustave Tuck Theatre, UCL. Attendance is free of charge.

The Day School precedes the Annual Lecture from 9.30am and provides a rare opportunity for readers and scholars of Hazlitt to explore a whole range of topics relating to Hazlitt and Journalism, as well as to meet each other and exchange ideas. Ian Haywood will give the opening lecture, and shorter papers will be delivered by David Higgins, Lucasta Miller and Ruth Livesey. A small fee applies for the admission to the Day School (£20/£15) which includes morning coffee, lunch and afternoon tea.

After the Annual Lecture, the day will conclude at the Marlborough Arms, Torrington Place, in close proximity to University College, from 5.30pm. For more details, please see the attached flyer …read more


CfP: Haunted Europe, Leiden University, 9th-10th June 2016

By Matthew Sangster

Please see below for a Call for Papers for an exciting-looking conference on Europe and English-Language Gothic, which will take place in Leiden next June.

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Call for Papers

Haunted Europe:
Continental Connections in English-Language Gothic Writing, Film and New Media

9 – 10 June 2016
Leiden University, The Netherlands

Keynote speakers:
Professor Robert Miles (University of Victoria)
Professor Roger Luckhurst (Birkbeck – University of London)
Professor Tanya Krzywinska (Falmouth University)
Lesley Megahey (director of the BBC film Schalken, the Painter)

The Leiden University Centre for the Arts in Society (LUCAS) invites proposals for papers that address continental connections in English-Language Gothic Writing, Film and New Media. The aim of the conference is to explore the representation and function of continental European cultures, peoples and nations in English-Language Gothic culture from the 1790s to the present. While the first wave of British and Irish Gothic fictions developed and solidified the idea of continental Europe as a fitting setting for Gothic Romance, little sustained research has been done so far on the ways in which the function and representation of the continent in English-language Gothic culture has developed and changed since the seminal first-wave fictions, and to what extent these developments and changes have had an impact …read more


Living in Periodicals: the curious case of the two Charlotte Richardsons

By ladys-magazine

Screen Shot 2015-08-25 at 15.11.58

We have written before about some of the many difficulties involved in identifying writers published in the Lady’s Magazine. A few weeks ago I was confronted with an oddity that was a new one to me, even after working with the periodical for such a long time: two women with near identical signatures whom I was convinced were different people.

Disambiguating (to use a term Wikipedia is fond of) signatures of contributors to eighteenth- and nineteenth-century periodicals is a knotty problem. It’s very likely, for instance, that generic signatures like A. Z. or Leonora were used by multiple individuals over time or even at the same time. To complicate matters further, we also know that the signatures of a single individual could be variously presently over the course of several months or years or even in a single issue of the magazine. The prolific early nineteenth-century prose and poetic contributor James Murray Lacey, for example, went by Mr. J. M. Lacey, Esq, J. M. Lacey, J. M. L. and possibly J. M. (author of many poems in the 1800s). Internal and external evidence can help resolve these riddles, but sometimes we just can’t be sure that we can definitively link all …read more


Publication Announcement – There is No Natural Religion copies A, D, and M

By Andrea H. Everett

There is No Natural Religion, copy M, object 2 (actual size)

The William Blake Archive is pleased to announce the publication of electronic editions of There is No Natural Religion copies A, D, and M, from the British Museum, Houghton Library, and Victoria and Albert Museum respectively. They join copy B, from Yale Center for British Art, copy C, from the Library of Congress, and copies G1-2 and L, from the Morgan Library and Museum. The Archive now has all seven extant copies of this illuminated book, making There is No Natural Religion the sixth illuminated book with its entire publishing history reproduced in the Archive, joining The Song of Los, Milton a Poem, All Religions are One, The Book of Ahania, and The Book of Los. The Archive will add The Marriage of Heaven and Hell to the list later this year. There is No Natural Religion was composed and executed in 1788, shortly after All Religions are One. These were Blake’s first works in illuminated printing, though no copy of either work survives from this date. Blake composed twenty plates for There is No Natural Religion plates in two antithetical sets (a and b series). …read more


Two Hundred Years Ago Today: The Lakers celebrate victory at Waterloo (and Wordsworth almost messes it up)

By Matthew Sangster


(This is part of a new series of On This Day posts edited by Anna Mercer. If you’re interested in contributing to the series, please contact her on

Skiddaw, engraved by William Miller after J.M.W. Turner (1833).

On the 22nd of August 1815, Robert Southey sent the following passage to his friend Grosvenor Bedford for insertion in the Courier:

On Monday the 21st of August, a bonfire was kindled on the summit of Skiddaw in honour of the Battle of Waterloo, the capture of Paris, & the surrender of Buonaparte. It is the first time that any public rejoicings had ever been held on so elevated a spot; & the effect was sublime to a degree which none can imagine but those who witnessed it. A great concourse of people were assembled; inhabitants of the country who had never performed the ascent before, going up on this occasion. {Large} Balls of tow & turpentine were set on fire & rolled down the steep {side of the} mountain. Rule Britannia, & God Save the King were sung in full chorus round the bonfire, accompanied by various wind instruments. The healths of the Prince Regent, the Duke of Wellington, & Prince …read more


C. D. H. or Catharine Day Haynes: A Gothic Author for the Lady’s Magazine and the Minerva Press

By jd359

Screen Shot 2015-08-19 at 12.31.16

Over thirty years into the lifespan of the Lady’s Magazine most of the magazine’s popular fiction remained the work of the anonymous, pseudonymous or often unsigned contributions of the periodicals’ reader/writers. Much of the content serialized in the magazine after 1800 closely resembles those popular Gothic novels published –and, importantly – paid for by the Minerva Press. And as we continue with our research, we uncover more authors who contributed to the Lady’s Magazine as unpaid correspondents and were paid for their works elsewhere.

LM XLVII (Oct 1816): 437. Image © Adam Matthew Digital / Birmingham Central Library. Not to be reproduced without permission

One of the correspondents who would become a paid writer published first in the Lady’s Magazine under the initials ‘C. D. H.’ According to The Cambridge Bibliography of English Literature, 1800-1900 [1] ‘C. D. H.’ is Miss C. D. Haynes, later Mrs C. D. Golland. Haynes published her first Gothic novel, The Castle of Le Blanc, A Tale, in serial form in the Lady’s Magazine from October 1816 through 1819.

This novel is really quite wonderful. It opens with a young bride, Clara, travelling to the castle of her new husband. On the journey he seems unaccountably …read more


Archives Spotlight: Papers of Anna Eliza Bray (1790-1883)

By Matthew Sangster

BRAY 3-2 stitched together c

We’re very happy to be able to publish a piece by Holly Wright of the West Sussex Record Office exploring their recently-catalogued archive of materials relating to Anna Eliza Bray, which promises to be a really great resource for Romanticists.

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Papers of Anna Eliza Bray (1790-1883)

The papers of 19th Century author Anna Eliza Bray have recently been catalogued at West Sussex Record Office and are now available for researchers to access. The catalogue can be viewed via our Search Online facility at

Frontispiece of Anna Eliza Bray’s book The White Hoods (Bray 3/2).

Anna Eliza Bray (formerly Stothard, neé Kempe) was born on 25th December 1790 in Newington, Surrey and died on 21st January 1883 in London. She was originally destined for a career in the theatre; however, this endeavour was cut short as she fell ill days before a much anticipated performance at Bath’s Theatre Royal in May 1815, and subsequently lost the opportunity to appear on the stage again. The archive contains letters from this period between her mother, her brother Alfred John Kempe (the antiquarian) and theatre directors from Bath and Cheltenham.

In February 1818, she married Charles Alfred Stothard (eldest son of the …read more


Review of ‘By Our Selves’: Film Screening at BARS 2015

By Honor Rieley

We continue our Romantic Imprints retrospective with a review of the special screening of By Our Selves held at Chapter Arts Centre in Cardiff during the conference. Many thanks to Erin Lafford of the University of Oxford for these thoughts on the film!

‘John Clare was a minor nature poet who went mad’. This statement, uttered in a crisp RP accent, is one of the most memorable soundbites from By Our Selves, a recent film release by Andrew Kötting and Iain Sinclair that re-traces the steps of John Clare’s escape from High Beech asylum in Epping Forest in 1841, back to his home in Northborough. An 80 mile walk reduced to ten words, which in one sense sum up the story that Kötting and Sinclair are trying to tell as much as they only begin to scratch the surface of the film’s affective and revisionary power. They become a refrain that recurs throughout the film, its frosty enunciation emerging starkly from a sonic patchwork of birdsong, muttered snatches of Clare’s poetry, letters, and journal entries, folk music, the haunting strains of Mary Joyce (played eerily by performance artist and poet MacGillivray), traffic noise, the whir of wind farms, telephone conversations, ominous …read more


BARS First Book Prize 2015: Judges’ Report

By Matthew Sangster

Following up on the announcement that Orianne Smith’s Romantic Women Writers, Revolution, and Prophecy Rebellious Daughters, 1786–1826 was selected by the judges from a strong shortlist as the inaugural winner of the BARS First Book Prize, please see below for a statement from the judges on the shortlisted books and on the timetable for the 2017 prize.

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BARS First Book Prize Shortlist 2015

Panel: Emma Clery (Chair), Ian Haywood, David Higgins, Susan Valladares.

It’s been heartening to find that news of the death of the academic monograph has been slightly exaggerated, and that British publishers are continuing to invest in new scholars. At the same time, getting a book into print remains a massive challenge and a huge achievement and all the nominated authors are prize-winners in that respect.

The following remarks are extracts from the views of the judges on the short-listed works, cited in the award ceremony speech:

Jeremy Davies, Bodily Pain in Romantic Literature (Routledge, 2014): intellectually adventurous and highly interdisciplinary…It successfully manages the difficult trick of combining theory-based erudition and accessibility, bringing a wealth of material from ‘pain studies’ and ‘medical humanities’ into the realm of Romantic literary studies.

Mary Fairclough, The Romantic Crowd: Sympathy, Controversy …read more


The Pirates of Paternoster Row: ruses and reprints in the Lady’s Magazine

By knlc

The publisher and Justitia Chodowiecki 1781

Through our weekly posts we have been trying to keep you up to date on our progress in finding out as much as possible about the Lady’s Magazine. Although we are passionate about our research, we have also not resisted the inclination to have a little moan every once in a while about the many challenges that have sometimes kept us back. A scarcity of sources, the rather fundamental problem of not having a complete text for the magazine itself, you have read it all before. We have not done this to vent our pent-up rage. That, we do amongst ourselves, weekly over coffee. Rather, we hope that our troubles may be instructive to other scholars who want to study the Lady’s Magazine or other periodicals of its kind and time. After all, the problems that we face are characteristic of the whole of the periodical press of the eighteenth and early nineteenth century. The lack or disappearance of historical archives and artefacts is not the only issue. Certain clever ruses through which magazine editors sought to evade critical scrutiny into their publications in their own time can of course be even more troublesome to readers over two …read more