Other literary forms
Although known primarily as a poet of light lyrics, William Allingham also wrote prose pieces and a diary. Few would deny that William Allingham: A Diary (1907) is one of the best literary diaries of the Victorian period. Primarily a product of his English years, it records conversations and encounters with an impressive array of eminent Victorian personalities. Alfred, Lord Tennyson, and Thomas Carlyle were intimates, and there is much about Robert Browning and Dante Gabriel Rossetti. Allingham’s formal prose turns out to be surprisingly substantial. Starting in 1867, he wrote more than twenty travelogues for Fraser’s Magazine. Narrated under the pseudonym Patricius Walker, the travelogues are notable for their expository emphasis. The traveler will sometimes pass opinion on what he has seen in his wanderings (Wales, Scotland, provincial England, parts of the Continent), but for the most part, he concentrates on describing scenery and reporting local customs and historical tidbits about the area. A selection of these pieces was later issued as Rambles (1873), while most of them were collected in the first two volumes of a posthumously published edition of his prose. The third volume of this work, Varieties in Prose (1893), contains Irish sketches and literary criticism.