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but his health, which was never good, could not bear the sedentary work and confinement, so he left London for the residence of a relation, at Dundee, under whose roof he remained but a short time, because of the inhospitable treatment he received. He was now thrown on his own resources, and gained a precarious and scanty livelihood by contributing articles and poetical trifles to the magazines and newspapers. So poor was the recompense he received for his work at this time, that he determined to relinquish the profession of literature as a livelihood, and, returning to London, devoted himself to the art of engraving, in which he attained so much skill, that he was able in after years to illustrate his own poems and fancies with infinite humour and effect.
In 1821 Hood became the Editor of the London Magazine, taking the place of Mr. John Scott, who was killed in a duel. This was a most important change for him, as the contributors to the Magazine included Charles Lamb, De Quincey, Allan Cunningham, Procter, Talfourd, Hartley Coleridge, and many others of the first literary men of the day. In the society of such congenial spirits Hood rapidly developed his powers, and enjoyed to the full the delightful intercourse. The first work issued by him was Odes and Addresses, in conjunction with Mr. J. H. Reynolds. Then followed Whims and Oddities, National Tales, Tylney Hall, and The Plea of the Midsummer Fairies. In all these works there is combined the keenest humour with the truest pathos and the soundest sense and observation. The Comic
Annual, which Hood now established, and carried on for many years with very little assistance, was deservedly popular, and the leading events of the day were so admirably caricatured, that the sketches and papers will be remembered long after the circumstances that produced them are forgotten. The health of the poet now began seriously to decline, but in his next poem-that founded on the story of “Eugene Aram"—there is no sign of any decay in his mental vigour. On the contrary, it may be said to have contributed more to his reputation as a true poet than any of his former productions-a singular instance of the growth of intellectual energy side by side with the decline of physical strength.
Hood now started a magazine in his own name, to which many of the best writers of the day contributed. The Editor, on a sick bed, laboured at his vocation with untiring zeal, and from that couch of pain and langour, which was to be his death-bed, emanated some of thɔse undying pieces with which his name is chiefly associated, such as The Song of the Shirt, The Bridge of Sighs, and The Song of the Labourer. Notwithstanding the production of these immortal pieces, Hool's circumstances became embarrassed in consequence of his prolonged illness, and Sir Robert Peel was applied to for a pension. To his honour be it spoken, it was granted without delay, and the wife and family of the poet reaped the benefit of it after his death. Tiat death occurred on the third of May, 1845
When, after the lapse of nine years, a monument was raised to him in Kensal Green Cemetery, a crowd of grateful admirers-literary men, working men, working women, and persons of all classes and ages testified to the honour and affection in which was held, by old and young, rich and poor, the poet