Notebook of John Wilson ('Christopher North'), containing chiefly verse. Edit


Component Unique Identifier
Level of Description


  • 1811. (Creation)


  • 62 Leaves (Whole)



  • Conditions Governing Access

    Normal access conditions apply.

  • Conditions Governing Use

    Normal reproduction conditions apply, subject to any copyright restrictions.

  • Arrangement

    62 folios.

  • Scope and Contents

    The notebook contains: lists of expenses and financial transactions (folios 2, 7); notes for a poem and an article (folios 24-25, 38); fragments of verse, possibly drafts for various projected poetical works, and unpublished in this form; and completed poems and sonnets. A number of the sonnets form part of a projected sonnet cycle on the Lake District which was apparently never completed.

  • Bibliography

    Of the completed poems, the following were published in ‘The Isle of Palm and other poems’ (Edinburgh, 1812):

    'Melrose Abbey' (folio 26); 'On first visiting Wastwater' (published as 'Written on the banks of Wastwater during a storm') (folio 41); 'Wastwater in a calm' (folio 42 verso); 'Written on Helm Craig' (published as 'Written at midnight on Helm Craig') (folio 45); and, 'The voice of the mountain' (folio 46).

    A sonnet beginning 'Albion! a tutelary power is thine' (folio 47 verso) was published in "Blackwood's Magazine", August 1817.

    The lines beginning "E'er Margaret was three months old" (folio 55 verso) form the opening section of ‘Elegy on the death of an infant’ published in “Blackwood’s Magazine”, March 1818.

    The following completed poems are apparently unpublished: 'Two dishes are there' (folio 8) (a parody on Wordsworth's sonnet); 'The beating of the heart' (folio 14); 'I dwelt one summer month in Wales' (folio 20); 'A village incident' (folio 30); 'Loughrigg tarn' (folio 34) (not the poem of the same title published in ‘The Isle of Palms’); 'On the death and burial of an infant' (folio 39 verso); 'Wastwater in a storm' (folio 41 verso); 'Wastwater in a gloom' (folio 42); 'Wastwater superstition' (folio 44; 'Written on Wastwater' (folio 44 verso); 'The voice of the sea' (folio 46); 'Written on Skiddaw' (folio 46 verso); 'Written on Helvellyn' (folio 47); 'Thou art a slave' (folio 48); 'All love their native land' (folio 48 verso); 'To the moon' (folio 49 verso); 'We durst not all who live a life of peace' (folio 54 verso).