Dove Cottage

This whitewashed cottage near Grasmere was William Wordsworth’s first home in the Lake District. He arrived in 1799, and remained here for the next nine years with his wife Dora, sister Dorothy and three small children.

Now owned by the Wordsworth Trust, the cottage is full of memorabilia, including the poet’s ice-skates, his passport, a pair of his reading glasses and a portrait of one of his favourite dog, Pepper, given to him as a present by Sir Walter Scott.

At the back of the cottage is Wordsworth’s "domestic slip of mountain", the half-wild garden where he liked to sit and compose poetry.

In late 1799, while on a walking tour of the Lake District, William Wordsworth saw Dove Cottage in Grasmere and decided to make it his home. He had known the valley as a boy, describing it as ‘paradise’. Within a few weeks, Wordsworth and his sister Dorothy had moved in and were busily furnishing the home and planning a garden.  It was whilst living here that Wordsworth produced most of his greatest and best-loved poems, and Dorothy wrote her fascinating Grasmere journal.

A visit to Dove Cottage today transports you back to this remarkable period of ‘plain living and high thinking’. The sights, sounds and smells bring to life the bustling family home the Wordsworths would have known over 200 years ago. In this humble Lake District cottage, you can feel how a unique combination of people and place came together and changed poetry forever.

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