This greatest of our lyric poets, the culmination of the Romantic Movement in English literature, appeared in an age which, following on the series of successful wars that had established British power all over the world, was one of the gloomiest in our history. If in some ways the England of 1800-20 was ahead of the rest of Europe, in others it lagged far behind.
As I go over in my mind the existing great houses in this country, I find that by far the greater number of the old houses were wantonly destroyed about the years 1800-20, and new ones in the Italian or some other incongruous style erected in their place. Sometimes, as at Little Wittenham, you find the lone lorn terraces of the gardens of the house, but all else has disappeared. As Mr.