Monday, 31 August 2009

FOOTSTEPS OF A DEAD POET


Whilst staying in the Lake District last week, Little Girl and I undertook a series of what we called Dead Poet Walks in the vicinity of Grasmere culminating on Thursday with a visit to the Wordsworth Museum. I didn’t expect to find anything of interest to a family lawyer amongst the exhibits but all at once I came upon the tale of William Wordsworth’s visit to France in 1791. It seems that he couldn’t resist a trip across the Channel amidst the upheaval of the French Revolution (typical of a poet, some may say) and whilst there befriended a lady who became his travelling companion. She gave birth to his daughter but he then had to return to England and left them (typical of a man, others may say), promising to return and marry when the political situation allowed it. Needless to say in 1802 he instead married Mary Hutchinson from down the road.

I have no idea whether or not he paid maintenance, although there is some suggestion that before marrying he at least volunteered an acceptable settlement. Even today the CSA would not be able to make an assessment upon him, although reciprocal arrangements with France would mean that any maintenance order granted there could be enforced in the English Courts.

Why is it that an area of the country as beautiful as the Lake District can have inspired some, like Wordsworth, to write verse, others to paint but all I can come up with is a blog entry?

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