Letter #99: To Richard Woodhouse, 27 October 1818

Today’s letter is a big one! Well, not any physically bigger than is typical, but you get the drift. This is one of those letters that has its own nickname: the “camelion Poet” letter. Or perhaps the “poetical character” letter. Save for the negative capability letter, today’s is probably the most significant letter in which Keats theorizes the nature of poetry.

We won’t say too much ourselves by way of intro, since we have a few responses coming for you in the next few days. We shall let our contributors do their thing! To read the text of the letter, head over to Forman’s 1895 edition. The manuscript is at Harvard. Images below courtesy of Houghton Library.

Page 1 of Keats’s 27 October 1818 letter to Richard Woodhouse. Keats Collection, 1814-1891 (MS Keats 1.38). Houghton Library, Harvard University.

Page 2 of Keats’s 27 October 1818 letter to Richard Woodhouse. Keats Collection, 1814-1891 (MS Keats 1.38). Houghton Library, Harvard University.

Page 3 of Keats’s 27 October 1818 letter to Richard Woodhouse. Keats Collection, 1814-1891 (MS Keats 1.38). Houghton Library, Harvard University.

Page 4 of Keats’s 27 October 1818 letter to Richard Woodhouse. Keats Collection, 1814-1891 (MS Keats 1.38). Houghton Library, Harvard University.

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