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...
7. Robert Southey to Grosvenor Charles Bedford, [before 23 April 1792] *
You may easily conceive with what reluctance I am obliged to withdraw from the Flagellants. it is like parting with a limb. I can resist or even despise reproach or persecution — intreaties I cannot. I have suffered much since I saw you — a very little more will overset the balance of reason — drop the Flagellant I must! yet I will do this with you. I will continue to write more papers & publish a volume compleat with you under another title — you know I mentioned this volume formerly — this will do & whatever odium at present attends us will be abated.
if this next paper be mine it must be cancelld — I know not what to do — the prospect before me is horrible & if I look for shelter it only appears in the ———
I am again going to Theobalds but to feel myself a burden to my friends I can hardly bear — you have offered me an asylum at Brixton & I shall be very glad to remain there a few days. yet I do not despair. I must drop the F. but I will still write with you in the manner I have proposed —
* Address: G C Bedford Esqr/ Brixton Causeway/ Surry
Watermark: [Partial] Crown with G R beneath
Endorsement: Recd. Apl. 23d. 1792
MS: Bodleian Library, MS Eng. Lett. c. 22
Previously published: Kenneth Curry (ed.), New Letters of Robert Southey (1965), I, pp. 5–6 [where it is dated 22 April 1792]. BACK