2884. Robert Southey to Grosvenor Charles Bedford, 23 December 1816
2884. Robert Southey to Grosvenor Charles Bedford, 23 December 1816*
There Mr Bedford is the work of an ill-spent morning; – & now you may send Sir William Parsons Mus: Doc: which you like, – & do what you like with the other. 
23 Dec. 1816.
The Mus: Doc: is accommodated with regular metre & short stanzas.
* Address: [deletion and readdress in
another hand] To/ G. C. Bedford Esqre/ Exchequer/
Stafford Row/ Pimlico
Postmarks: 7 o’Clock/ 26 DE/ 1816 N.T; Two Py Po/ Unpaid/ Bge St We
Endorsements: 23 Decr. 1816./ With Ode for 1817; for Ltr of 23 Decr 1816
MS: Bodleian Library, MS Eng. Lett. c. 25. ALS; 5p.
 Southey was forwarding, via Bedford, verses for his Laureate New Year Ode, so that they might be set to music for performance at court by Sir William Parsons, the Master of the King’s Music (these performances had actually been suspended since 1810). He had previously sent verses on the bombardment of Algiers in his letter to Bedford of 13 December 1816 (Letter 2877); in this letter he sends an alternative set. BACK
 On 27 August 1816, in an attempt to put an end to piracy in the Mediterranean and to the enslavement of captured Europeans, an Anglo-Dutch fleet under the command of Admiral Edward Pellew, 1st Viscount Exmouth (1757–1833; DNB) bombarded the port of Algiers. The action caused the Dey of Algiers to release about 1200 slaves and to sign a treaty undertaking to end the practice. BACK
 Algiers was theoretically part of the Ottoman Empire (though in practice independent) and flew the red Ottoman flag, decorated with a crescent moon. BACK
 A reference to the Islamic belief that the grave constitutes the ‘third stage’ of human existence. Until the Day of Judgement the wicked are punished in the grave, while the righteous are rewarded. BACK