3206. Robert Southey to Henry Herbert Southey, 6 November 1818

3206. Robert Southey to Henry Herbert Southey, 6 November 1818⁠* 

My dear Harry,

I send you a case which seems to be a very uncommon one. The papers do not seem sufficiently to state that the poor patient suffers continually & very greatly from thirst, & dryness in the throat. If any good could be done her I should be truly glad, – & it is doing something even to afford the hope of it, by getting better advice than is within her reach. [1] 

You will probably see Chauncy Townsend & hear of us from him, before this reaches you. And you have most likely heard from Bedford that I shall not move southward before the spring for a reason of {cause} of which I know not whether it more unexpected, or (all circumstances connected) unwished for. [2] 

What is become of the book which Mr Frith, Mr Firth Mr Forth or Mr Soforth committed to your care? [3]  It is very possible that I might have found occasion to say a civil thing about it in a single line, or note, if it had been at hand. Perhaps it is lying at the Great Mans, where many of my poor consignments do penance. The Great Man is so very great, that some part of his exuberant greatness is communicated to those in his employ.

In spite of many interruptions I have made pretty {good} progress during the summer. 50 sheets of Brazil are printed, & the first vol. of Wesley will soon be finished. [4]  Moreover I have resumed Oliver Newman [5]  in good xxxxxx earnest, & with the laudable determination of realizing some money by it, & a thing which it has never yet been in my power to do, because till Roderick [6]  set me upright in the world, I was always in Longmans debt. I shall hold my head high & ask a good sum, & try hard to xxxxxx accumulate 3 or 4000£ by the time I am fifty, – if I should live so long, – that I may feel myself free from the necessity of writing for mere ways & means, – which would be a sore evil in case of sickness & the disability which advancing years must certainly bring with them. I must make hay, if not when the sun shines, while the day light lasts.

Love to Louisa & Mrs Gonne.

God bless you


Keswick. 6 Nov. 1818.


* MS: Bodleian Library, MS Don. d. 4. ALS; 3p.
Unpublished. BACK

[1] This patient is unidentified. BACK

[2] Charles Cuthbert Southey was born on 24 February 1819. BACK

[3] Unidentified. BACK

[4] The History of Brazil (1810–1819) and The Life of Wesley; and the Rise and Progress of Methodism (1820). BACK

[5] Southey did not finish ‘Oliver Newman’ and the extant material was published posthumously in 1845; see Oliver Newman: a New England Tale (Unfinished): with Other Poetical Remains (London, 1845), pp. 1–92. BACK

[6] Southey’s epic Roderick, the Last of the Goths (1814). BACK

Places mentioned

Keswick (mentioned 1 time)