2846. Robert Southey to Charles Watkin Williams Wynn, 17 September [1816]

2846. Robert Southey to Charles Watkin Williams Wynn, 17 September [1816] ⁠* 

My dear Wynn

I enclose a characteristic letter from Edward. If he should ever learn that honesty is the best policy, he will probably do well in that way of life which he has betaken himself, [1]  – & in which all who chuse it seem to find strong attractions. Indeed I can readily understand why.

Frank the inclosed according to his directions.

The business at Algiers has been well done. [2]  It follows I trust as a necessary consequence that Mahommedan slavery is abolished in Italy, – where it was nearly as bad as Xtian slavery xx in the Barbary States. [3] 

God bless you


17 Sept.


* MS: National Library of Wales MS 4812D. ALS; 2p.
Unpublished. BACK

[1] Edward Southey was working as an actor in a travelling company. BACK

[2] Algiers was bombarded by a joint Anglo-Dutch fleet on 27 August 1816. Its rulers were compelled to release their Christian slaves and reaffirm their promise to end the practice of enslaving seamen captured in the Mediterranean. BACK

[3] The Barbary States of Algiers, Tunis and Tripoli had a long tradition of enslaving captives. But Muslim slaves were also common in Italy in the early modern period, both in State-owned galleys and in private households. The institution declined in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries and the French invasion of Italy in 1797–1799 led to its abolition in most Italian States. There still seem to have been some Muslim slaves in Sardinia and Sicily at this time, though. BACK

People mentioned

Southey, Edward (1788–1847) (mentioned 1 time)