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Colin Robertson Larkins poetry book


Held at: University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts [Contact Us]3420 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6206

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Colin Robertson Larkins was one of eight children born in Kolkata, India to John Pascal and Mary Robertson Larkins. In 1824 Colin Robertson Larkins traveled to Surrey, England with his mother and siblings. He attended Charterhouse School in Godalming and later the East India Company Military Seminary in Addiscombe. Larkins returned to India in 1835 as a Lieutenant 20th Regiment of Bengal, Native Infantry. He married Mary Forsyth circa 1841. They had one son Pascal William, who died shortly after his birth in December 1842. Mary Larkins died a few weeks after the birth of their son.

This green, leather-bound volume with gilt edges contains sixty-seven numbered poems written by Larkins. The volume was presented to his future wife Mary Forsyth in 1839. A dedication/presentation page, a poem entitled To Mary, and a table of contents are on the first few pages. The Lord's prayer is the first work in the volume. The poems in the volume span the years from 1830 to 1842. Poems prior to 1839 are presumably copied from earlier journals and papers written by Larkins. In early poems dated 1830 to 1834 Larkins indicated where and when the work was written such as, Charterhouse School, London, and Addiscombe. Examples include The North American Indians and The Finsbury observatory! a parody. Poems dated during the year of 1835 were written when Larkins was at sea. These poems include My home, The sea in calm, and The comet. The comet dated November 1835 recorded Larkins' observations of Halley's Comet. One lengthy work in the volume entitled The spirit's jubilee was inspired by witnessing a storm in 1839 while at sea. Other works consist of sailor's songs, poems of England and India, persons, and family members including his sister Anne. There are also item entitled Fragments. The last entry in the volume, dated December 15, 1842, is an epitaph for the Larkins' son Pascal William. An armorial bookplate is pasted on the inside front cover. The leaves in the second half of the volume are blank.

Armorial bookplate: Colin Robertson Larkins.

Sold by Antiquates Fine & Rare Books (Wareham, Dorset, United Kingdom), 2017.

University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts
Finding Aid Author
Donna Brandolisio
Finding Aid Date
February 2018
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Colin Robertson Larkins poetry book, 1839-1842.
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