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The Collected Letters of Robert Southey Part 3

1032. Robert Southey to Henry Herbert Southey, 5 February 1805 ⁠* 

Dear Harry

As Madoc is now finished, [1]  do you get for me the remaining sheets beginning with Sheet 3.C. page 387. & also the sheet with the preface &c. & pay the carriage for me to Penrith – because the rascals charge me five shillings – whereas at Edinburgh they would not demand 1/6. – The copy thus compleated will do to correct for a future edition & save a better, & I shall have the pleasure of seeing the whole together at least six weeks [earlier] {before} the published book will reach Keswick – which will be another pleasure.

By this time you have received the 20 £ which John May sent off on the 31st – making the first quarters allowance. your remittance for the future will be sent either on a regular quarter day – or at any other times & proportions which you may chuse – you will let me know this in your next.

Mrs Calvert has something like a paralytic affection in one of her legs. she has lost all feeling in it – tho she still has the use of the limb. If you were here I would advise Calvert [2]  to get an apparatus & give her the nitrous oxide, this being precisely a case for it. – A great event has taken place in our own household – Mary the maid having this morning walked off without ceremony to be married, – to the great discomposure of Mrs Coleridges schemes, who is on the eve of going to Liverpool to visit the tribe of Crampton. [3] 

Beef Philips is publishing a compendium of all modern travels in numbers. [4]  I wish you would look at one of them & tell me whether the works are analized at any length – or if it be little more than a mere review – because if well done the book would be useful to me. – I am getting on with history & thinking about the Spaniards Letters [5]  – which my finances compel me to think about against my inclinations.

The title page to Madoc is exceedingly beautiful. Open Gothic letters, engraved after Tomkins’s writing, [6]  on an a graphic antiquarian & amateur q who is quite unrivalled in his art. He has done this to oblige Duppa. – I would fain be finishing Kehama [7]  if I could afford xxx to write for pleasure, without any regard for profit.

All well. the Edithling stands half her time – walks along by the window – & says ‘take care’. Your friend John [8]  is in good plight & behaves better of late.

God bless you.

RS.

Feby 5. 1805.

Get the sheets soon – or they will be shipt off for London.


Notes

* Address: To/ H. H. Southey Esqr/ Mr Guthries Bookseller/ Nicholson Street/ Edinburgh –/ Single
Stamped: KESWICK/ 298
Postmark: [partial] FE/ 1805
MS: Bodleian Library, MS Don. D3
Unpublished. BACK

[1] Madoc (1805) was being printed by the firm of James Ballantyne in Edinburgh. BACK

[2] William Calvert (1771–1829; DNB), who was at school with Wordsworth at Hawkshead, where he later became the schoolmaster. On the death of his father, Calvert became a man of independent means, inheriting, with other property, the estate of Bowness on the east shore of Bassenthwaite, near Keswick (DNB). BACK

[3] Dr Peter Crompton (dates unknown) of Eton House, Liverpool, a radical reformer who supported John Thelwall in the 1790s and who contested elections at Nottingham (1796, 1807, 1812), Preston (1818) and Liverpool (1820). BACK

[4] Phillips published the compendium A Collection of Modern and Contemporary Voyages & Travels: Containing, I. Translations from Foreign Languages, of Voyages and Travels Never Before Published. II. Original Voyages and Travels Never Before Published. III. Analyses of New Voyages and Travels Published in England (1805–1809). BACK

[5] Southey’s Letters from England: by Don Manuel Alvarez Espriella. Translated from the Spanish was published by Longman in 1807. BACK

[6] Thomas Tomkins (1743–1816; DNB): writing-master and calligrapher, who took commissions for decorative book titles of luxury publications. BACK

[7] Southey’s The Curse of Kehama was published in 1810. BACK

[8] Southey’s ass. BACK

Published @ RC

August 2013