1298. Robert Southey to Charles Watkin Williams Wynn, [25 March 1807]

1298. Robert Southey to Charles Watkin Williams Wynn, [25 March 1807] ⁠* 

Not to St Lucie – tho it were thousands instead of hundreds. [1]  With my present income I am content, – but certainly had far far rather it came from a quarter where it could be better spared. I say this from no feeling of repugnance at accepting such support; – had you your brothers fortune I would rather receive from you than from government – as it is, if you can pension quarter me upon the Treasury – by all means do. – Of course in this topsey-turveying I never thought of myself, – except indeed in a sort of half hope that Tom might have been promoted. As for the question on which you are ousted it may perhaps surprize you to hear that I think with the King & the Bishops. [2]  oh – But what a rascal rabble are to come in! – You will carry your point the next reign. – & possibly come again into power before that time comes – meantime Mrs Wynn will pass her summers in Wales instead of Westminster; – & I think one might whisper congratulation to her, rather than condolence. –

God bless you. When you are, like Christian, rid of your load [3]  – I will tell you of my new arrangements [4]  – which are likely to produce better fruit that his Majestys – consisting in currants & gooseberries. I am taking root here among the mountains –




* Address: To/ C W Williams Wynn Esqr M. P./ Whitehall/ Westminster/ Private
Postmark: FREE/ MAR 28/ 1807
MS: National Library of Wales, MS 4812D. ALS; 4p.
Previously published: Kenneth Curry (ed.), New Letters of Robert Southey, 2 vols (London and New York, 1965), I, p. 441.
Dating note: Southey dates the letter ‘Wednesday’ which was 25 March in 1807. BACK

[1] Wynn had offered Southey a position in St Lucia, West Indies, on the government payroll. BACK

[2] The ministry of which Wynn was a member fell because the King would not accede to its plan to introduce an act emancipating Catholics from the civil penalties and restrictions placed upon them. BACK

[3] Alluding to John Bunyan, Pilgrim’s Progress, in which the figure of Christian is advised by Mr Worldly Wiseman to quit his burden. BACK

[4] See Southey to Charles Watkin Williams Wynn, 27 March 1807, Letter 1300. BACK

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