2517. Robert Southey to Grosvenor Charles Bedford, 16 December 1814

2517. Robert Southey to Grosvenor Charles Bedford, 16 December 1814 ⁠* 

16 Dec. 1814.

My dear Grosvenor

I have a letter tonight from Croker in reply to an enquiry of mine, [1]  saying that tho the Annual Ode ought to be abolished, it is not yet, – & therefore I must write one. So instead of pesting the custom I shall set about the ode: however bad it may be, it xx will be better than the occasion deserves. [2]  Pray send me in your next, which you may do from a directory, the Mus Doc Sir Wm Parsons’s address; for to him I x suppose it must be sent, – I really believed that the ceremony had been dropt last year. It matters very little; being fully sensible that I have no right to be out of humour, I shall take the thing a la Napoleon, – that is to say bonâ parte. [3]  There is a pun for you which has grown from the pens point.

I am glad to hear the Quarterly is in such forwardness having a most lively interest in its early appearance: but I hope & trust my article upon Forbes [4]  will be there, having reckoned upon it.

About the vivified hair in my next. [5]  To my great joy I have got scent of the Squid-Hound whom I inquired for in the Omniana, – it is a sort of cuttle fish as big as a whale, & uglier than the Devil [6] 


I have written this evening to Mr R.  [7] 


* Address: To/ G. C. Bedford Esqr/ Exchequer
Endorsement: 16 Decr. 1814
MS: Bodleian Library, MS Eng. Lett. c. 25. ALS; 2p.
Unpublished. BACK

[1] See Southey to [John Wilson Croker], 6 December 1814, Letter 2512. BACK

[2] ‘Ode, Written in December 1814’. It was thought unsuitable by the authorities, and was not published until Southey’s Minor Poems, 3 vols (London, 1815), II, pp. 227–238. It was retitled ‘Ode, Written During the War with America, 1814’ in The Poetical Works of Robert Southey, 10 vols (London, 1837–1838), III, 221–228. BACK

[3] ‘In good part’. BACK

[4] James Forbes (1749–1819; DNB), Oriental Memoirs (1815), reviewed by Southey in Quarterly Review, 12 (October 1814), 180–227. BACK

[5] See Southey to John Rickman, 29 June 1813, Letter 2276. BACK

[6] In Omniana, or Horae Otiosiores, 2 vols (London, 1812), I, pp. 273–274, Southey had asked readers to send him ‘well authenticated particulars’ of the ‘Squid-hound’. BACK

[7] See Southey to Edward Roberts, 16 December 1814, Letter 2519. BACK

People mentioned

Roberts, Edward (d. 1835) (mentioned 1 time)