223. Robert Southey to Joseph Cottle [fragment], [14 June 1797?]

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The Collected Letters of Robert Southey Part 1: 1791-1797, Edited By Lynda Pratt
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223. Robert Southey to Joseph Cottle [fragment], [14 June 1797?] ⁠* 

Christ Church, June 14, 1797.

* * * I am in a place I like: the awkwardness of introduction over, and the acquaintance I have made here pleasant. * * Your letter to Herbert Croft [1]  has made him some enemies here. I wish much to see you on that business. Bad as these times are for literature, a subscription might be opened now with great success, for Mrs Newton (Chatterton’s sister [2] ) and the whole statement of facts ought to be published in the prospectus.

Time gallops with me. I am at work now for the Monthly Magazine, upon Spanish poetry. If we are unsuccessful here (in suiting ourselves with a house) I purpose writing to Wordsworth, and asking him if we can get a place in his neighbourhood. [3]  If not, down we go to Dorsetshire. Oh, for a snug island in the farthest of all seas, surrounded by the highest of all rocks, where I and some ten or twelve more might lead the happiest of all possible lives, totally secluded from the worst of all possible monsters, man. * * *



Notes

* MS: MS untraced; text is taken from Joseph Cottle, Reminiscences of Samuel Taylor Coleridge and Robert Southey (London, 1847).
Previously published: Joseph Cottle, Reminiscences of Samuel Taylor Coleridge and Robert Southey (London, 1847), p. 213 [in part, with omissions indicated]. BACK

[1] Southey and Joseph Cottle both disapproved of his exploitation of manuscripts obtained from members of Thomas Chatterton’s (1752–1770; DNB) family. BACK

[2] Mary Newton (1749–1804; DNB). BACK

[3] The reference is ambiguous: in June 1797, Wordsworth was living at Racedown, Dorset, but he moved to Alfoxden, Somerset, in July of that year. BACK

Published @ RC

March 2009

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