2482. Robert Southey to Grosvenor Charles Bedford, 25 September 1814

2482. Robert Southey to Grosvenor Charles Bedford, 25 September 1814 ⁠* 

My dear Grosvenor

Three things I have to say unto you, peradventure four, yea perpossibility they may prove to be five.

First will you intimate to Gifford that a reviewal of the Docstors book has been sent to Murrays, – that it is likely to be very well done & by no means dull as the subject might seem to promise (Gooch is the writer) – & you hardly need say that its insertion in would be very gratifying to me, inasmuch as it would be serving the Docstor. [1] 

Secondly – Longman delays Roderick [2]  till November, for Paternostrian reasons [3] 

Thirdly this delay gives me an opportunity of cancelling the title page, for the purpose of inserting in it my new title of ‘Member of the Royal Spanish Academy’ – the Real Academia Española [4]  having been pleased to elect me an Academico Honorario, – of which honour the Secretary has sent me official annunciation under the great seal of the Academy – I have deserved this & am gratified by it accordingly. In due time the Portugueze Academy will probably do the same thing. [5] 

Fourthly, by reason that we are not well served with tea in this place, & that London is a better market for that said, I request you as my factotum, & first Lord of the Treasury to purchase for me at Twinings [6]  the following stock –

12 pounds black tea at 7/s or as little above that price as may be

3 Do – green at 13/

3 Do – black at 10/6 –– or Do

these in one parcel being for ourselves

6 Do black at 7/s – &c –

3 – green at 13/ in a canister

these separate being for the Senhora. – but the whole in one packet, directed to me.

Fifthly, say also to Gifford that I believe a reviewal of Wordsworths poem will be offered him, to which I request such attention as it may be found to deserve. It is by Charles Lamb, & will, I doubt not, contain much beautiful writing. [7] 

Sixthly The Docstor & Neville White are here, & between them both, I am the idlest man quoad [8]  head work; but the limbs are tested to their full powers.

Have I ever sent you the stanza which was cut out from Moscow concerning Mr Roscoe? [9]  & the still better one added since the ballad was published, x concerning Brougham & Jeffrey? [10] 

My buen amigo [11]  D Manuel turns up in high favour with Ferdinand, [12]  & I have at length got the transcript of the Poema del Conde D. Ferran Gonzalez – from a mss in the Escurial. [13]  I have also the account of the Bayonne transaction by Escoiquiz, very curious & very important. [14] 

So no more at present from your Worships most faithful & most devoted servant

Robert Southey

Sunday night. 25 Sept. 1814.


* Address: To/ G. C. Bedford Esqr/ Exchequer/ Westminster.
Stamped: KESWICK/ 298
Postmark: E/ 29 SE 29/ 1814
Endorsement: 25. Septr 1814
MS: Bodleian Library, MS Eng. Lett. c. 25. ALS; 4p.
Unpublished. BACK

[1] No review of Henry Herbert Southey’s Observations on Pulmonary Consumption (1814) appeared in the Quarterly. BACK

[2] Roderick, the Last of the Goths (1814). BACK

[3] i.e. for business reasons; Longman and his partners were based at Paternoster Row, London. BACK

[4] The Real Academia Espanola, founded 1713. It regulated the use of the Spanish language. BACK

[5] Neither the Portuguese Royal Academy of Sciences (founded 1779), or the Royal Academy of History (founded 1720), bestowed the honour Southey expected. BACK

[6] The London tea and coffee merchants. BACK

[7] Lamb’s review of The Excursion (1814) appeared in Quarterly Review, 12 (October 1814), 100–111. BACK

[8] ‘with respect to’. BACK

[9] ‘The March to Moscow’, a ‘droll ballad’, published in the Courier, 23 June 1814. For the suppressed stanza see Southey to John Rickman, 15 June 1814, Letter 2442. BACK

[10] As published in Southey’s final collected edition, the stanza read: ‘And Counsellor Brougham was all in a fume/ At the thought of the march to Moscow:/ The Russians, he said, they were undone,/ And the great Fee-Faw-Fum/ Would presently come/ With a hop, step, and jump unto London./ For as for his conquering Russia,/ However some persons might scoff it,/ Do it he could, and do it he would,/ And from doing it nothing would come but good,/ And nothing could call him off it./ Mr. Jeffrey said so, who must certainly know,/ For he was the Edinburgh Prophet./ They all of them knew Mr. Jeffrey’s Review,/ Which with Holy Writ ought to be reckon’d:/ It was through think and thin to its party true;/ Its back was buff, and its sides were blue/ Morbleu! Parbleu!/ It served them for Law and for Gospel too’; see Poetical Works, 10 vols (1837–1838), VI, pp. 218–219. BACK

[11] ‘Good friend’. BACK

[12] Ferdinand VII (1784–1833; King of Spain 1808, 1813–1833). BACK

[13] The ‘Poem of Fernan Gonzalez’, a 13th-century account of the life of Fernando Gonzalez, Count of Castile 931–970. The poem survived in one 15th-century manuscipt in the royal archive at the Escurial. Southey had been trying to obtain a copy since at least 1813; see Southey to Charles Watkin Williams Wynn, 28 June 1813, Letter 2275. BACK

[14] Juan Escoiquiz (1762–1820), whose Idea Sencilla de las Razones que Motivaron el Viage del Fernando VII a Bayona (1814) (‘Honest representation of the causes which inspired the journey of King Ferdinand VII to Bayonne’) had dealt with the meeting between his former pupil (Ferdinand VII (1784–1833; King of Spain 1808, 1813–1833) and Napoleon Bonaparte at Bayonne in April-May 1808. At the meeting, Ferdinand VII eventually abdicated, leaving the way open for French control of Spain. BACK

Places mentioned

Paternoster Row, London (mentioned 1 time)