DYCE, Alexander, letters, autographs, documents, manuscripts

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DYCE, Alexander (1798-1869). Man of letters.
Autograph Verse Letter, 3 pages 4to (inlaid, rather soiled) with address-leaf to C.E. Walker at Exeter College, Oxford, Lanteglos, 27 October 1822. A lengthy humorous poem of eight verses to a colleague at Exeter College, Oxford, referring nostalgically to term time habits and acquaintances, and concluding in a postscript 'I'm exceedingly admired at Fowey'.
'In your lone chamber in the quad of Hall,
Whose single window scarce can banish gloom,
The ceaseless ringing of the Chapel-bell
Once more you hear (- at least I so presume)
Once more do strict collegiate laws compel
Your tardy steps to Forshall's lecture-room;
Once more you share the Supper-party's din-
And next day's headache from excess in gin.'
Alexander Dyce studied at Exeter College from 1816 to 1819, graduating with a third in Classics. The Forshall he refers to is Josiah Forshall (1795-1863), administrator of the British Museum, who was elected a Fellow of Exeter in 1819 soon after his graduation, and tutored there from 1822 to 1824 prior to his appointment as the assistant librarian in the department of manuscripts of the British Museum.

After graduating, at his father's insistence Dyce was ordained as an Anglican priest, and served in curacies at Lanteglos, near Fowey in Cornwall from 1822 to 1824. It is apparent that he had mixed feelings about his position in Lanteglos, and longing for the literary life in London, which he was to take up in earnest in the summer of 1826.
[No: 26453]


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