The Friends of Coleridge warmly invite you to express an interest in a work of remarkable scholarship.
Coleridge’s Father had its origins at the beginning of Jim Mays’ working life. A professional career intervened, which included editing STC’s poems and plays for the Collected Coleridge; but on the verge of retirement he revisited his early enthusiasm and, after some years’ further research, much of it in the Devon county archives, completed the book. It is a substantial recovery of a man who might otherwise only be remembered as a comic footnote in the life of his famous son. His intellectual achievements foreshadow those of STC, and far from being an absent-mind cleric in the Parson Adams mould, he was highly motivated and skilfully self-directed, achieving a degree of worldly success unknown to the earlier generations of his family. In discovering who John Coleridge really was, Jim Mays has also shone a new light on the historically important but neglected Devon philomaths, amateur and professional alike, some of whom fostered the young John Coleridge’s career. And as a consequence of investigating JC’s family roots, he has also revealed the lives and travails of the Devon poor in their sometimes tragic detail.
This is the work of a scholar dedicated to the ideals and processes of scholarship, and the material supporting the printed text is recorded in an accompanying searchable cd, which also contains the full text. Our decision to offer the material in this combined form has made it possible to produce a finely printed book, while keeping costs viable. The Friends of Coleridge are delighted to promote a unique contribution to our knowledge of Coleridge, his father, and the world from which they both came: and it is a happy coincidence that John Coleridge also published his major work, Miscellaneous Dissertations, by subscription, and that his 332 subscribers are much the same in number as those we hope will support this venture.
If you are interested in subscribing please click here to open a PDF file giving a synopsis of the book. There are instructions for expressing interest at the foot of page 1, but you need do no more than email Graham Davidson, saying you are interested. We will send you a payment form later when we know we have enough potential subscribers (about 300) to make the book viable.
Click here to get an impression of what the book will look like: the first four of twelve chapters are here presented as a pdf. They are uncorrected proof sheets, and though we are aware of some of the typos, etc, any such notices, comments or suggestions are welcome and should be sent to Graham Davidson. A few inspection copies will also be viewable as printed books in Romantic locations to be announced here.