3508. Robert Southey to John Rickman, 7 July [1820]

3508. Robert Southey to John Rickman, 7 July [1820] ⁠* 

My dear R.

I am once more at work, tho in a season when daily interruptions are occurring. – My first business has been to give Westall the inclosed letter-press for his views of Keswick. [1] 

You will not be sorry to hear that I am looking forward at the end of my works in hand, to a general history of English literature & manners, (the things which ought not to be separated) by agreement with Murray, for which he will pay me at the rate of 1000 guineas per quarto volume. [2] 

The Reports which I can call to mind as desiderata are those on Education subsequent to the 3d. Lord Selkirks affair, & Botany Bay. I have two Prison & three Police Reports. [3] 

Edith is much obliged to Mrs R. for sending the letter which I now return. She ought to say so herself, – but she loves not pen & ink, & at this time household business is thick & thronging. The children thank God, are well.

Thank you for some of the pleasantest hours I past in London.

God bless you


Keswick. 7 July.


* Endorsement: Fr RS./ 7 July 1820
MS: Huntington Library, RS 396. ALS; 2p.
Dating note: Year from endorsement. BACK

[1] Southey wrote the introduction to William Westall’s Views of the Lake and of the Vale of Keswick (1820). BACK

[2] This project did not result in a book; the surviving notes that Southey put together were posthumously published as ‘Collections for the History of Manners and Literature in England’, Common-Place Book, ed. John Wood Warter, 4 series (London, 1849–1850), I, pp. 439–578. BACK

[3] Various parliamentary reports: the Select Committee on the Education of the Lower Orders in the Metropolis reported first in 1816 and again in 1817 – constituted as a Select Committee on the Education of the Lower Orders, it reported five times in 1818; papers relating to the Red River Settlement, founded by Thomas Douglas, 5th Earl of Selkirk (1771–1820; DNB), and dealing with the conflict between the Métis people and Scottish settlers 1815–1819; a House of Commons Select Committee on Transportation (effectively an investigation of the Botany Bay colony in Australia, founded 1788) reported in 1812; the first and second Reports of the Select Committee State on the State of the Prisons within the City of London and the Borough of Southwark appeared in 1818; and the Parliamentary Select Committee on the State of the Police of the Metropolis, which reported twice in 1817 – its third report appeared in 1818. BACK

People mentioned

Places mentioned

Keswick (mentioned 2 times)