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Television and Radio. I've got it I had a promised Cooper you'd return the same coloring. Good. I've done the rough draft of the letter. It's not a very long letter. No no it isn't. And why must you have different colored ink Lambert's think it is quite the cheapest on the market. I don't see Halmos to spoil my efforts. I really don't go. I've just finished. Tell me what you think of the letter. Well you know I think fish just listen to it. March 23 if 1769 Bristol Street and addressed to Horace Walpole Esq. near Exeter Change London sir being versed a little in antiquities I have met with several curious manuscripts among which the following may be of service to you in a future edition of YOUR truly entertaining anecdotes of painting
in correcting the mistakes if any in the notes you will greatly oblige your most humble servant Thomas Chatterton. Very good. Do you actually think so other than it may be too short but the poems go with it I know. Yet you sign your right now and why not. For if you should find out after all your trouble will not find out. Why do you think he will. So you think you have me there you have not had the wit to move your coin. I'm thinking it just does not seem to be our game. You know very well Horace Plato is my friend. Take your time I'll stretch my legs. Oh by the way are you writing poems now. Oh no. A fellow of my own
poetry has Thomas Chatterton the name the poet. I've never heard of him. No no. Chatterton something. He lives in Bristol. What kind of poetry. That's the most interesting thing. The monk named oh about 14 65 although many posts it sounds interesting. If you are interested of course that's why he wants me to publish them. Will you answer his letter. Yeah I have it with me. I intend to post it in the morning. My idea Chatterton have a curious and kind I give you a thousand thanks for the obliging offer you make me of communicating your manuscripts to me what you've already sent me is valuable and give me leave to ask you why Riley's poems are to be found. I should not be sorry to print them or at least a specimen of them if they have never been
printed. Is it time to close the store. Two minutes less. 8:00 p.m. Mr. Lambert. Two minutes very close to 8 you are in a rush. Yes in case you cannot tell. Yes Mr. Lambert a fine Apprentice clerk you are living it up and always it is keeping her close. At 8:00. You chatter. Why do you write all their government. Well it was you know just come out and we'll
have it later I have news come down at once. All right I suppose you're right. He has answered he encourages me encourages you will perhaps not quite. He admires the poem and you accept them as genuine. Of course I assured you he would and I still don't see what you would have to gain by this hoax. Don't you. Would you have me be a princess to Lambert until I rot. I detest that well you are an apprentice none the less your parents have signed the contract that cannot be broken unless unless what unless it should be broken by Mr. Lambert himself. And even if it should you have no income. I have no income as yet. When you expect something if Horace Walpole is my patron or dreaming Horace Walpole won't help you he answered my letter. He doesn't know you. You probably answered only to be well courteous. I shall write him again. Where are you going. I must be home it's late or wait for me.
I shall tell him of my circumstances my aspirations my answer of course. Right oh are you listening. Forgeries. Little doubt about it. Your shore grey Mr. Gold and most interested in your opinion. Are you certain there are too many in consistencies for instance the poems are supposed to have been either written personally or else transcribed by a monk who lived about the year 14 65. All right then consider one particular poem. This monk living in the year 14 65 copies a poem which he says was written by another monk living in the year 950 and what is the poem about. What is it about the Battle of Hastings. What exactly the Battle of Hastings
was not fought until the year ten sixty six. It would have been rather extraordinary if the first monk had written a poem about an event which was to happen a hundred years after his death to mark not the must have been made by the second monk by the monk living in 14 65. Yes it might have. Only that's not the only mistake chorus. Now consider the second monk. He lives in the year 14 65 or whatever his name is. Well I shouldn't dismiss a poet's name so how would it be if after your analogy the printer neglected to add Thomas great to see you come to life. Mr Gove me merely await his opportunity and then jumps in with both feet. Not at all just one. I ask an innocent question then let me explain. Sorry. So our second poet Riley lives about the year 14 65. How then does he write poetry in a meter which was not invented until this century.
Indeed indeed the man. John Goldsmith is why I discount Riley as the author and what caused the question in your mind Horace the second letter of the second. Yes that's the entire matter. The first one was quite proper. Yeah great want to be seated there. All over. Thank you none for me I'll wait. The first letter seemed to be from a gentleman but not the second. As I say that's how I suspected the poems themselves. The writer turns out to be clerk no less. Indeed. But what connection I asked myself that and I answered. Well the point is Chatterton writes to ask for my aid. His conditions are that of a clerk. He wants escape his mother he claims is in the most dire circumstance and mind you all this while
I have begun correspondence with a gentleman. Have you answered the second letter of course. I advised him to see to his obligations as a clerk if at some future time you can support his fancies. Let him then be concerned with poetry quite proper. I never dreamed there might be forgeries. Do you suppose he is trying to have a joke at my expense. I can't imagine more sharing. The air. Are you mad. Do you actually plan to do yourself. What I plan my route. Same house with my family in the morning. It is not your copying I question whatever you will sir. And where has he gone. I have no idea. I read
his contract much more than I own my poor family. He made out his last will and testament. The Lord knows what he had in mind. He would answer no question. Do you think perhaps I do not know. Perhaps he has gone to London. He was always talking about something in the line of writing poetry writing. He must have said something to you. We're always together. Yes yes. Therefore our church said it was impossible. I must return. What will you do. I'll make my way with the first. But to get rid of me. Yeah I hear you. Why not. Because it's
not the new year. Must be why can't an Englishman propose a toast in the middle of the year it becomes absurd everything out of a plane indeed then you must be quite upset. I never felt better. I see. Then you probably haven't read the poems and expensive they are to play all of this. Well what are you talking about. You remember those poems you showed me. M was sent by the young clerk from Bristol two years ago was it the rally a rally or poems Chatterton forgeries rather there are some scholars who think not. In any event they've been published on sale now and what he was doing you know I'm just the person. Nothing I assure you. We were discussing the rally you remember Chatterton very unfortunate what you have seen them. The poems of course. No I meant Chatterton himself
unfortunately have his forgeries published as genuine. Unfortunate to have ended that way. What do you mean don't you know. I've been travelling on the continent. No one came to London tried earning his bread with his pen. It was too much for him though and now is back in Bristol. Oh no the poor chap killed himself. And what a pity. They're actually quite good forgeries are not all of London reads them. Heard in today's program were Don's dribbling out of Lauren cocking Scott's bladder. Lauren Gary Jay Williams and Mary Casey very Fred
Walker were our studio engineers. Why is a writer is written by Floyd Horowitz and directed by Larry Wall cough. This is Dave Carter speaking. This has been another program in the series why is a writer produced by WSU School of the air under a grant from the Educational Television and Radio Center and is distributed by the National Association of educational broadcasters. This is the Radio Network.
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Why is a writer?
The literary cheat
Producing Organization
University of Iowa
WSUI 910 AM (Radio station : Iowa City, Iowa)
Contributing Organization
University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
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Episode Description
This program, "The Literary Cheat," focuses on Thomas Chatterton, a brilliant young man who attempted to represent his forgeries as the work of a fifteenth-century priest. Chatterton died in 1770 at age 18.
Series Description
Produced by the Iowa School of the Air, this series focuses on various works of literature from Shakespeare to Twain.
Broadcast Date
Chatterton, Thomas, 1752-1770
Media type
Actor: Stribling, Don
Actor: Ingram, Lauren
Director: Walcoff, Larry
Producing Organization: University of Iowa
Producing Organization: WSUI 910 AM (Radio station : Iowa City, Iowa)
Writer: Horowitz, Floyd
AAPB Contributor Holdings
University of Maryland
Identifier: S60-6-9 (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 00:14:30?
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Chicago: “Why is a writer?; The literary cheat,” 1960-11-25, University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed July 19, 2024,
MLA: “Why is a writer?; The literary cheat.” 1960-11-25. University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. July 19, 2024. <>.
APA: Why is a writer?; The literary cheat. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from