2265. Robert Southey to John Rickman, 26 May  *
My dear R.
Peradventure I may see you in about four weeks. – The impediment to my appearance at Streatham is removed, & circumstances are likely to lead me there. I cease to labour on the Register  after <with> this fourth volume, & am therefore in a situation similar to that of Mr Vanisttart with the leather tax.  There is however little danger of my being puzzled in finding ways & means. – My first thought is to turn to account ready materials & a good capital of knowledge, by recasting the Spanish portion of the Register, & so cas & making in proper form & with all necessary documents, a proper history of the war in the peninsula.  – I prophesy that the Historiographer  has the same intent, – & doubt whether his office will not enable him to weigh me down with the booksellers.
What news of Mrs R & the expected?
 Nicolas Vansittart, 1st Baron Bexley (1766–1851; DNB), Chancellor of the Exchequer, narrowly defeated an attempt to repeal the leather tax by 125–120 in a House of Commons vote on 20 May 1813. He could therefore hope he was done with the matter, as Southey was with the Edinburgh Annual Register. BACK