2802. Robert Southey to Grosvenor Charles Bedford, 1 June 1816

2802. Robert Southey to Grosvenor Charles Bedford, 1 June 1816⁠* 

1 June. 1816

My dear G.

My head, nose & eyes are in such a state from my summer cold, that I know not whether I shall be able to get thro this letter, needful as it is, & short as it must be. – Do what you will about the title [1]  – I suppose indeed, you have used your own judgement about it. And do what you will about the binding, – before the book is ready I will send up the letter, [2]  in which I shall observe your directions, but follow my own sketch rather than yours.

Without being ill, I am thoroughly invalided by the annual catarrh, which never at any moment was more oppressive than it is just now

Oh I have a commission for you. Nash is coming here forthwith – we had a good deal of merriment abroad about the Parfait Amour which we found at some of the Hotels & enquired for at all, & I want to surprize him with some xxxx. I see it advertised in the Hay Market, – buy for me a bottle of this liqueur, & one of noyau & a third of what I think is called Elixir Stomachique, it hath saffron in it & savoureth deliciously thereof, – & send them me by waggon coach. [3] 

God bless you


Is yours the Auditors Office? Arbuthnot [4]  has just placed a certain George Taylor in that office, to whom I shall be very glad if you can show any kindness. His father is a most extraordinary man, for whom I have a high respect, & to whom my brother Tom is indebted for many acts of essential friendliness [5] 


* Address: To/ G. C. Bedford Esqre/ Exchequer/ Westminster.
Stamped: KESWICK/ 298
Postmark: E/ 4 JU 4/ 1816
Endorsement: 1 June 1816
MS: Bodleian Library, MS Eng. Lett. c. 25. ALS; 2p.
Unpublished. BACK

[1] Bedford was supervising the printing of The Lay of the Laureate. Carmen Nuptiale (1816). BACK

[2] Southey’s letter asking permission to dedicate the poem to Princess Charlotte; see Southey to Princess Charlotte, 4 June 1816, Letter 2805. BACK

[3] ‘Parfait Amour’ is a purple-coloured, floral liqueur from France and the Netherlands; crème de noyaux is a liqueur tasting of almonds and made from apricot kernels; ‘Elixir Stomachique’ was another variety of liqueur popular in the Low Countries. BACK

[4] Charles Arbuthnot (1767–1850; DNB), diplomat, politician and Joint Secretary to the Treasury 1809–1823. BACK

[5] George Taylor (d. 1817) was the eldest son of George Taylor and brother of Southey’s future literary executor, Henry Taylor. Arbuthnot was an old family friend and obtained a minor appointment for the younger George Taylor as an Assistant in the Office for Auditing the Public Accounts. However, soon after he arrived in London, he died of typhus fever. BACK

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