Henry Crabb Robinson (1775–1867), was an English diarist, and one-time war correspondent for The Times. He was an extremely sociable man, well-liked and a great conversationalist. As such, he knew nearly every leading literary, artistic, scientific and political figure of the time. He kept up a prolific correspondence with many of them, as well as a highly detailed diary that mentions contemporary literary figures such as Coleridge, Charles Lamb, Blake, Wordsworth, Browning, Byron, Carlyle, Dickens, Goethe, Shelley, and Tennyson. Robinson's writings - Diary, Reminiscences and Correspondence - were published after his death.
On page 24 of Possession, Byatt says that Crabb Robinson was 'a man of indefatigable good will, intellectual curiosity, delight in literature and learning, and yet full of self-deprecation'.