SHELLEY CIRCLE – MARY, PEACOCK and HOGG. Autograph envelope by Mary Shelley; together with an autograph letter by Thomas Jefferson Hogg to Thomas Love Peacock
Lot 77
SHELLEY CIRCLE – MARY, PEACOCK and HOGG. Autograph envelope by Mary Shelley; together with an autograph letter by Thomas Jefferson Hogg to Thomas Love Peacock
Sold for £1,375 (US$ 2,136) inc. premium

Lot Details
SHELLEY CIRCLE – MARY, PEACOCK and HOGG
Autograph envelope by Mary Shelley, addressed to: "Mrs Hogg/ Clifton Road/ Carlton Hill/ St John's Wood/ London/ Angleterre" and marked as paid ("Affranchie"), postmarked as sent on 12 March and received on 17 March 1850, with mourning seal in black wax inscribed 'Mary/ Shelley', one page, slight dust-staining etc., narrow oblong 8vo, 12 March 1850; together with an autograph letter (unsigned) by Thomas Jefferson Hogg to Thomas Love Peacock ("Dear Pekoe"), discoursing, with considerable and jocular frankness, on matters priapic, occasioned by a ludicrous assertion in Ireneo della Croce's history of Trieste ("...It may be, that the pious & most learned historian sought only to describe the effects of good liquor upon his own thwacker; for my mind, at least, is too gross to comprehend how 'the glad symbol' could express those properties, which are last enumerated by the good father. But I am happy to be able to leave the whole matter in the hands of a man far more Priapear & symbolical, than myself..."); autograph address on verso ("T.L. Peacock Esq/ East India House"), 2 pages, some dust-staining and creasing, 4to, postmarked 16 August 1831

Footnotes

  • Shelley's Oxford friend, Thomas Jefferson (Jeff) Hogg was notorious for falling for the women in Shelley's life, beginning with poet's sister (whom he glimpsed only once), followed by his first wife, Harriet, then by his second, Mary, and finally with Jane Williams, the muse who inspired lyrics such as 'To Jane with a Guitar' in the last weeks of Shelley's life. It is Jane Williams who is the "Mrs Hogg" of Mary's envelope. She was in fact married to a Captain John Edward Johnson, even though by the time Shelley knew her she was living with Edward Williams, who was to drown with Shelley. Hogg and Jane settled down together as man and wife not long after Shelley's death. Mary's letter to Jane was written from Nice, where she was staying for her health, less than a year before her death. Hogg had been introduced to the novelist Thomas Love Peacock by Shelley, and the two became close friends; although their friendship was to come under considerable strain with the publication of Hogg's self-serving biography of Shelley in 1857.
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