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

2354. Robert Southey to Joseph Cottle, 23 December 1813 ⁠* 

Keswick. Dec. 23. 1813.

My dear Cottle

I should have a feeling of self-reproach if I were not immediately to write to you, not for the vain purpose of offering consolation which you will gain draw from the best – the only source, – but to assure {you} that neither distance, xx nor lapse of time will ever prevent me from taking a xxxxxxxx a deep interest in whatever concerns so old & so dear a friend. – Blessed are the dead that die in the Lord! [1]  I am far enough myself on my journey to look often to the end of it, & to think of rejoining those who are gone before.

Remember us (I speak for Edith & myself) most kindly to your sisters & to Robert, – if, as I suppose, he be with you. This is not a time for saying more, – but I know that at such a time you will be pleased at recognizing my hand. Pray write to me as soon as you can. I shall be anxious to hear from you.

And believe me my dear Cottle

now & ever

Your old & affectionate friend

Robert Southey.


Notes

* Address: To/ Mr Cottle/ Brunswick Square/ Bristol
Stamped: KESWICK/ 298
Endorsement: 78; 211
MS: Berg Collection, New York Public Library
Unpublished. BACK

[1] Revelation 14: 13. Cottle’s mother, Sarah Cottle (c. 1739–1813), had died on 18 December 1813. BACK

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August 2013