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The Collected Letters of Robert Southey Part 4: 1810-1815

1748. Robert Southey to John May, 16 February 1810 ⁠* 

Feby. 16. 1810.

My dear friend

I have been in perfect health ever since you heard from me, & am so at this present writing, – God be praised.

You promised me such particulars as you could collect respecting the conduct of the French in Portugal. The sooner you can conveniently give me any information upon the subject, the better, as I am now very near that portion of the years history. [1]  Twelve sheets are printed, greatly to the satisfaction of the booksellers, who continually repeat their admiration of the integrity of the writer, – as if it were any merit not to be the hanger-on of a political party! The truth is that upon subjects which interest me I write with all my heart, & with all my soul & with all my strength, – & that sets a stamp of sincerity upon the style, which is not to be counterfeited.

This evening I received another letter from the Atlantic, being the fourth. It was thrown in,

Lat.38. 12. N. June 4. 1806.

Long. 53. 17. W.

& found on the shore, near Pitts Town, Crooked Island, one of the Bahamas, Nov. 18. 1809. – If these experiments were repeated by all the ships in the navy, we should have in the course of a century have the currents as accurately laid down as the soundings. xxxxx

God bless you –

R Southey


Notes

* Endorsement: No. 147 1810/ Robert Southey/ No place 16th February/ recd. 19th do/ ansd. 7th March
MS: Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center, University of Texas, Austin
Previously published: Charles Ramos, The Letters of Robert Southey to John May: 1797–1838 (Austin, Texas, 1976), pp. 119–120. BACK

[1] The Edinburgh Annual Register, for 1808 (1810). Southey was employed to write the historical sections. BACK

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August 2013