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...
317. Robert Bloomfield to Samuel Rogers, 26 June 1817*
June 26. 1817
To S. Rogers Esq.
My long stay in London has been unavoidable, having to wait untill I could see my son's probable chance with his competition at 'the Central National School' under Dr Bell. He is now there, but entirely at my expence for perhaps a long time to come. I have procured him a Lodging to my wish, and shall return to Bedfordshire as soon as possible, but this I cannot do without giving you the following statement.
Some time since when dining with Sir E Brydges he offer'd me the assistance of his purse, which I then declined, because he at the same time gave me an order on the Bankers at Canterbury for £30 being money lodged then for my benefit; but the reply from thence stated that said sum had already been drawn by another hand and transmitted to Bury St Edm for my ultimate use. Thus disappointed I found my daily expences in London bring me fast aground, and I venturd to state my case to my good friend Mr park, that the want of some such assistance would leave me miserably straightened, if not disable me entirely from compleating what I have so happily begun for my Daughters and Son's benefit, and consequently for my own. I think it impossible that the wishes of my friends to do me good, can in any way be better accomplishd than in thus providing for my children at the proper time of life for their exertions. I ask'd Mr Parks advice, and you have it in the enclosed letter.
Whatever may be the end of the susbscription, or of your more immediate exertions, Sir, to serve me, I cannot hesitate to inform you that the clothing my youngest daughter, and the entire support of my Son in lodgings, still call for what I cannot continue to give without thus soliciting and obtaining something to keep the wheels going which I have put in motion. Forty of fifty pounds out of whatever may be left in Clements Lane in my name, would enable me to return to Bedfordshire with a tolerable grace, and give me the solid satisfaction of having accomplished at least as much as I wish'd, and more than I realy hop'd.
I am Sir, your most obedient servant
I promise myself the honour of seeing you on Saturday morning at ten, if not forbidden by letter before that time.
No 19 Daggets Court, Moor Fields.