We travelled slightly north to Grasmere to visit Dove Cottage - once home to William Wordsworth and his posse of family and friends.
I studied Wordsworth at school, and wasn't a big fan of his work back then, but can see the genius of it these days. However, I think the lifestyle of the poet and pals make much more interesting reading.
He lived with his sister Dorothy who was a blogger - well she probably would have been had she lived in these times. She was a diarist and her works provide a fascinating insight into how they lived in the late 1700's and how the Wordsworth family in particular lived. She wrote about everything - tooth ache, what they were eating at meal times, what she shopped for and where she walked. She also wrote about the visitors they had at the cottage. I think Dorothy's works are far more interesting than Williams actually.
When he married, his wife also brought her unmarried sister to live with them and then she went on to have 3 children. It is a very tiny cottage for 4 adults, 3 children and varies visitors to have lived in.
The cottage (with the smoking chimney) would have had uninterrupted views of the lake in Wordsworth's day. The houses behind would not have been built then. The garden at the cottage was inspirational too, with quotes from Dorothy's diaries written on slate.
We enjoyed a walk around the village.
Such a beautiful little spot surrounded by the hills.
We found yet another stream for a spot of feet cooling!
I can heartily recommend a visit to Grasmere. As Wordsworth said "The loveliest spot that man hath ever found". And I'll leave you with the words of the man himself:
|I WANDER'D lonely as a cloud|
|That floats on high o'er vales and hills,|
|When all at once I saw a crowd,|
|A host of golden daffodils,|
|Beside the lake, beneath the trees,||5|
|Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.|
|Continuous as the stars that shine|
|And twinkle on the Milky Way,|
|They stretch'd in never-ending line|
|Along the margin of a bay:||10|
|Ten thousand saw I at a glance,|
|Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.|
|The waves beside them danced, but they|
|Outdid the sparkling waves in glee:—|
|A poet could not but be gay||15|
|In such a jocund company!|
|I gazed, and gazed, but little thought|
|What wealth the show to me had brought:|
|For oft, when on my couch I lie|
|In vacant or in pensive mood,||20|
|They flash upon that inward eye|
|Which is the bliss of solitude;|
|And then my heart with pleasure fills,|
|And dances with the daffodils.|