Part Four, covering the period 1810-1815, was a crucial one for Southey’s career and reputation. It has, however, never before been fully documented or fully understood. By 1810 he was established in Keswick...
244. Robert Bloomfield to Hannah Bloomfield, 13 October 1809*
Friday. 3 O clock
Oct 13. 1809.
My Dear Girl
This I hope you will recieve tomorrow night by the Miller.
Yours came to hand this morning, accompanied by one from Mr Lofft posted at Thetford. He says he sent yours to Troston on Wednesday with instructions to have it forwarded to you, so that I take it for granted that you have it before this time. He mentions in his as follows
'I regret that we have not ere this seen your Daughter, and should she call while we are at Troston I dare say I shall regret that we do not see her longer'.
Now if you have not been before this, and since the receipt of my last, I know not hardly how to advise you. It appears to me that if you stay at Honington till next Wednesday you will only have an opportunity of merely calling as you go by (if they will drive you to the door!) I doubt they expect you to spend a day with them, and in this case dare you steal that day from Mr Mothersoles? or would it look odd to walk some morning, Sunday, Monday, or Tuesday to Troston, alledging to your present entertainment that Mr L had written to your Father desiring that you would go. If this is not agreeable to your plan, or feelings dont notice it otherwise than as a hint.
You will at all events be in time to pass through the fair on your way home, but I dont think you can accomplish it before the beginning of the next week, that is, till ye 23 or 24th and then you will be in time to pick the bones of a Duck with us. You have managed so well and so deservedly thus far, that I leave to your better knowledge of circumstances all determinations with regard to return, only let me know when you propose to start. Tell Uncle Isaac that I recieved his letter, which is full of pith, and I will reply to it with the best news I can get, in about a fortnight.—I find you have devulged something relating to Mr Binly's aims, and you will find few men more capable of appreciating and of striking the nail on the head than Isaac.
I enclose [word deleted] a letter from Mary B.  And being greviously tormented by my Back, and my old dreams strengthend rather than diminishd I dont feel inclined for further gossip this time. All well besides,
And I am now
I travel on the Wye every evening in the parlour with a fire to myself.