Theodore Watts-Dunton, by James Douglas The Project Gutenberg eBook, Theodore Watts-Dunton, by James Douglas This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included with this eBook or online at www.gutenberg.org Title: Theodore Watts-Dunton Poet, Novelist, Critic Author: James Douglas Release Date: January 6, 2013 [eBook #41792] Language: English Character set encoding: ISO-646-US (US-ASCII) ***START OF THE PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK THEODORE WATTS-DUNTON*** Transcribed from the 1904 Hodder and Stoughton edition by David Price, email email@example.com THEODORE WATTS-DUNTON POET NOVELIST CRITIC BY JAMES DOUGLAS WITH TWENTY-FOUR ILLUSTRATIONS. A typical meadow of Cowslip Country, or, as it is sometimes called, ‘The Green Country,’ is Hemingford Meadow, adjoining St. It is a level tract of land on the banks of the Ouse, consisting of deposits of alluvium from the overflowings of the river.
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In summer it is clothed with gay flowers, and in winter, during floods and frosts, it is used as a skating-ground, for St. Ives, being on the border of the Fens, is a famous skating centre. On the opposite side of the meadow is The Thicket, of which I am able to give a lovely picture.
This, no doubt, is the scene described in one of Mr. Watts-Dunton’s birthday addresses to Tennyson:— Another birthday breaks: he is with us still. There through the branches of the glittering trees The birthday sun gilds grass and flower: the breeze Sends forth methinks a thrill—a conscious thrill p. 33That tells yon meadows by the steaming rill— Where, o’er the clover waiting for the bees, The mist shines round the cattle to their knees— ‘Another birthday breaks: he is with us still!’ The meadow leads to what the ‘oldest rustic inhabitant’ calls the ‘First Hemingford,’ or ‘Hemingford Grey.’ The imagination of this same ‘oldest inhabitant’ used to go even beyond the First Hemingford to the Second Hemingford, and then of course came Ultima Thule!
The meadow has quite a wide fame among those students of nature who love English grasses in their endless varieties. Owing to the richness of the soil, the luxuriant growth of these beautiful grasses is said to be unparalleled in England. For years the two Hemingfords have been the favourite haunt of a group of landscape painters the chief of whom are the brothers Fraser, two of whose water-colours are reproduced in this book.