640. Robert Southey to Charles Watkin Williams Wynn, 17 December 1801 *
My dear Wynn
It is said that when a woman has any business to write about it always comes in in the postscript – my own nature is quite opposite. & the reason that makes me write must come first.
I received from Corry my first quarters salary in advance – 87 £ English according to the then exchange. travelling has consumed 50 £. to remove my mother from Bristol has cost me 15–. I need not state other items. London xxxx doubles my expenditure. I know not from what time my secretaryship is to date – if from my first meeting Corry – ten weeks have elapsed. if from his summons – the quarter wants but a few days of its fulfillment – but a second payment cannot be expected before the end of the six months. – send me one draft – & I will make it last till April by what else I can get from newspapers & reviews. – then – receiving the salary at the end of the term, & the heaviest expences & embarrasments being overcome – I shall go on well while the sinecure continues, & will never be unjust enough to receive what I do not want. my dear Wynn it was this hope that made me joyfully connect myself with Corry. it is only this that makes me regard the probable breach of that connection with regret. – In my last I laid open my dreams & wishes for the future – another year will lessen my expences – but at a heavy price. – my Cousin Margarett is gone! – I have just paid part of her death expences – xxxxx – I hardly knew how like a sister she was to me before. my Mother is going – unless some sudden amendment appears – a few weeks – or even days must compleat the dissolution. all claims upon me for exertion will soon cease.
I never saw xx <so> quiet & easy a decline. the spirits still remaining – xx enough of hope, yet still a forefeeling of the event – but without fear. – I thought to have written of other things – but this possesses me – & these feelings are best kept to oneself. my own system leads me to avoid all painful feelings when we may avoid them – of course when they come there is no need to communicate them –
God bless you
Thursday. 17. Dec. 1801.