The Lives and Letters of Charles and Mary Lamb

Oct 15, 08:15 AM
Dr Felicity James, author of Charles Lamb, Coleridge and Wordsworth: Reading Friendship in the 1790s and current custodian of Charles’s writing chair, introduces the Slightly Foxed editors to siblings at the heart of a literary circle. In their Tales from Shakespeare, gentle-hearted drunken-dog Charles wrote the tragedies and Mary, often chided for laughing, the comedies, and together they penned letters using different coloured inks. From a murder in the home and time in private asylums to conversations with Coleridge at the pub, dissertations on roast pig and salons in their London lodgings, we explore the lives of the Lambs and their friendships through books.

Please find links to books, articles, and further reading listed below. The digits in brackets following each listing refer to the minute and second they are mentioned. (Episode duration: 43 minutes; 43 seconds)

Books Mentioned
We may be able to get hold of second-hand copies of the out-of-print titles listed below. Please get in touch with Jess in the Slightly Foxed office for more information. 
  • An Englishman’s Commonplace Book, Roger Hudson (2:03)
  • Charles Lamb, Coleridge and Wordsworth: Reading Friendship in the 1790s, Felicity James is out of print (2:44)
  • There have been two editions of the Lambs’ letters: The Letters of Charles and Mary Anne Lamb, ed. Edwin W. Marrs, Jr., 3 vols. [which go up to 1817], Cornell University Press, 1975, and The Letters of Charles and Mary Lamb, ed. E. V. Lucas, 3 vols., Dent, 1935. Sadly neither is still in print.
  • Tales from Shakespeare, Charles and Mary Lamb (14:33)
  • Mrs Leicester’s School and Poetry for Children, Charles and Mary Lamb are out of print (14:44)
  • Essays of Elia, Charles Lamb is out of print (16:46)
  • A Double Life: A Biography of Charles and Mary Lamb, Sarah Burton is out of print
  • The Mirror and the Light, Hilary Mantel (39:12)
  • Ghost Wall, Sarah Moss (41:00)

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Opening music: Preludio from Violin Partita No.3 in E Major by Bach

The Slightly Foxed Podcast is hosted by Philippa Lamb and produced by Podcastable