200. Robert Southey to Edith Southey [fragment], [16 February 1797] *
Grosvenor has just been talking of you. He was correcting an error in Musæus;  I had laid down my pen and begun one of my melodious whistles, upon which he cried for mercy for God’s sake, and asked if you liked my whistling; adding that he would spirit you up to rebellion if ever I did any thing you did not like. I said you had often threatened to tell Grosvenor Bedford. Well, Edith, on the fifth day I shall see you once more; and you do not know with what comfort I think at night, that one day more is gone. I do not misemploy the leisure I make here; such books as, from their value, ought not to be lent from the library, I am now consulting, and appropriating such of their contents as may be useful, to my red book.
... Richards,  I understand, was much pleased with me on Sunday. I was, as always in the company of strangers, thoughtful, reserved, and almost silent. God never intended that I should make myself agreeable to anybody. I am glad he likes me, however, — he can and will assist me in this ugly world.
* MS: MS untraced; text is taken from Charles Cuthbert Southey (ed.), Life and Correspondence of Robert Southey, 6 vols (London, 1849–1850)
Previously published: Charles Cuthbert Southey (ed.), Life and Correspondence of Robert Southey, 6 vols (London, 1849–1850), I, pp. 302–303 [in part, with indications that only a portion of the letter is reproduced].
Dating note: Dating of this letter is derived from Charles Cuthbert Southey. BACK