1682. Robert Southey to Richard Heber, 15 September 1809

1682. Robert Southey to Richard Heber, 15 September 1809 ⁠* 

Keswick. Sept. 15. 1809.

My dear Sir

I possess both editions of Barlœus, [1]  & also Geo. Giuseppes work. [2]  the view, such as it is, of Bahia [3]  in the latter is curious, as the designer had evidently the notion of a Panorama. If you have the America of J de Laet [4]  at hand compare the title page with the frontispiece to G. Giuseppe. – In the one there is Brazil welcoming Holland, in the other looking up to Portugal, & the contrast between Dutch & Italian design is truly characteristic. – In the course of my reading on this subject I have been led to suspect that J de Laet wrote some Commentaries, – do you know of any such work? [5] 

My volume is far advanced. [6]  55 sheets printed. & I am transcribing the last chapter. – I mean to insert an advertisement with a list of the books which I want for the second volume, requesting the use of them from any person in whose possession they may happen to be. [7] 

Thank you for your offer about the Cid, but it was reviewed in the first number by Scott. [8]  This third has not reached me as yet.

What is the price of a set of the Byzantine Historians? [9]  I am very desirous of going thro them, & occupied as I am, will find time for it if I live.

Yrs very truly

Robert Southey.

Have you the Latin poems of Barlœus, or his Epistles? [10]  I should like to see both, as they would probably furnish some gleanings respecting himself, Piso, Marggraf & J de Laet. [11]  It is my intention to annex a Bibliographical appendix to each volume.


* Address: To/ Richard Heber Esqr/ Elliotts Brewery/ Westminster
Postmark: [partial] E/ SEP 18
Watermark: shield with date 180[MS torn]/ T BOTFIELD
MS: Bodleian Library, Oxford, MS Eng. Lett. d. 215. ALS; 3p.
Unpublished. BACK

[1] Caspar Barlæus (1584–1648), Rerum per Octennium in Brasilia et Alibi Nuper Gestarum Sub Praefectura (1647), no. 233 in the sale catalogue of Southey’s library. Southey also owned the second edition of this work dated 1660, no. 112 in the catalogue. BACK

[2] Giovanni Giuseppe di Santa Teresa (1658–1735), Historia delle Guerre del Regno del Brasile (1689). BACK

[3] Located in the northeastern part of Brazil, on the Atlantic coast. BACK

[4] Novus Orbis seu Descriptionis Indiæ Occidentalis (1633) by the Dutch geographer Johannes de Laet (1581–1649). BACK

[5] No such work has been discovered. BACK

[6] The first volume of Southey’s History of Brazil (1810). BACK

[7] This advertisement appeared at the end of the Preface. BACK

[8] Southey’s The Chronicle of the Cid (1808) was reviewed by Scott in the Quarterly Review, 1 (February 1809), 117–134. BACK

[9] Southey eventually owned an edition of the Corpus Scriptorum Historiæ Byzantinæ in 40 volumes (1828–1841), no. 740 in the sale catalogue of his library. BACK

[10] Barlæus’s Poemata (1628). His letters were published posthumously in 2 volumes. BACK

[11] Willem Piso (in Dutch Willem Pies, in Latin Guilielmus Piso, in Portuguese Guilherme Piso) (1611–1678), a Dutch physician and author of Historia Naturalis Brasiliæ (1648). Georg Marcgrave/Georg Marggraf (1610–1648) was born in Saxony, and went to Brazil in 1638 in the expedition of the Dutch led by John Maurice/Johan Maurits of Nassau (1604–1679). Willem Piso also took part in this expedition and made use of Marggraf’s papers on natural history, with editorial input from Joannes de Laet, as part of his Historia Naturalium Brasiliae. BACK

People mentioned

Scott, Walter (1771–1832) (mentioned 1 time)

Places mentioned

Keswick (mentioned 1 time)