181. Robert Southey to Charles Watkin Williams Wynn, [10 October 1796]
181. Robert Southey to Charles Watkin Williams Wynn, [10 October 1796] *
The Duke of Northumberland  is a man of remarkable arrogance. & his pride & his folly are equally manifest by what you mentiond of his placing his pedigree among the tombs of his ancestors. he found himself very awkwardly situated at Lisbon thro this aristocratic spirit. the English merchants there associate with the first nobles of the country. but the Duke thought fit to draw a line of distinction between them, & always invite the tiers etat by themselves. they were of course offended & he found himself without society.
as for the MSS at Wynnstay you are my authority. I think you mentioned it in a letter from Elton. if I have only dreamt this the dream must have made a strange impression, for it is a circumstance which I have frequently mentioned, & laid some stress upon. at any rate Geoffrey of M.  xx xxxx wrote in Latin & Meirion there is wrong & I corrected his errors. the similarity of the Hebrew & Welsh is indeed very striking. the only tolerable thing of mine in the last magazine, is a short but compleat refutation of the fashionable philosophy of Helvetius.  a parcel of blockheads there have been talking nonsense pro & con, & in my opinion what I have advanced fully decides the question.
the verdant copy puzzled you. know then that for the accommodation of such of my friends as are curious or are troubled with weak eyes, I <can> get the books died to any shade of green: to me infinitely more agreable than the dazzling reflection from white paper. my little volume of poems  are just begun & you shall have them in six weeks. the Triumph of Woman the B Bay Eclogues & a Hymn to the Penates form the chief features. I must send you a little piece which is not to be inserted, tho among the happiest that I have written. you will like to see it inserted here & omitted in the Volume.
To a College Cat. 
In return for your story I will send you a very good one. A Sportsman & a Poet were walking together when they heard a pack of hounds in full cry. hark — cried the Sportsman — what delightful music! — I cant hear it, replied his companion for those damned dogs. — farewell. I will bring the Guerras Civils &c  to town with me.
* Address: To/ C W Williams Wynn Esqr/ No 5
Stone Buildings/ Lincolns Inn/ London
Postmark: A.O.C./ 11/ 96
Endorsement: Oct. 11/ 1796
MS: National Library of Wales, MS 4811D. ALS; 4p.
Previously published: Kenneth Curry (ed.), New Letters of Robert Southey, 2 vols (London and New York, 1965), I, pp. 115–116 [in part; ‘To a College Cat’ not reproduced]. BACK
 The historian, and Bishop of St Asaph, Geoffrey of Monmouth (d. 1154/1155; DNB), whose works included The Historia Regum Britanniae; see Southey to the Editor of the Monthly Magazine, 6 September 1796 (Letter 175). BACK
 Claude Adrien Helvétius (1715–1771), French materialist philosopher and encyclopaedist; see Southey to the Editor of the Monthly Magazine, 2 September 1796 (Letter 172). BACK
 Euclid of Alexandria (dates uncertain; between 325 and 250 BC), mathematician, whose work includes the Elements. BACK
 William Cavendish-Bentinck, 3rd Duke of Portland (1738–1809; Prime Minister 1783 and 1807–1809; DNB) was installed as Chancellor of the University of Oxford on 1 July 1793. BACK