2825. Robert Southey to Robert Gooch [fragment], 24 July 1816

2825. Robert Southey to Robert Gooch [fragment], 24 July 1816 ⁠* 

Keswick. 24 July 1816

My dear Gooch

I am somewhat at a loss how to answer your letter, – being myself xxx accustomed to estimate books by the information which they contain without caring for the manner in which it is conveyed. The best accounts of foreign countries were written when there was no attempt at fine writing – witness Chardin [1]  among the French, & Dampier [2]  among our own countrymen. X  [3]  But [MS missing] <xxxxxxxxxxxx> [MS missing] enough in the [remainder of the MS page missing]

I am well in body & in mind. My spirits will never again be what they have been: – but I have abundant blessings left; & you know what my feelings have long been with regard to this life & to the next. X [4] 

Remember me to Mrs Gooch. The young Rawbeard [5]  I trust is going on well.

God bless you

yrs affectionately


[MS missing]


* Endorsements: Southey/ Poet
MS: British Library, Add MS 88940. ALS; 2p.
Unpublished. BACK

[1] Jean Chardin (1643–1713), the expatriate French Protestant jeweller and traveller, who authored Voyages de Monsieur le Chevalier Chardin en Perse et autres lieux de l’Orient (1711). Southey drew on Chardin’s narrative in Thalaba the Destroyer (1801). BACK

[2] William Dampier (1651–1715; DNB), circumnavigator and explorer of New Holland (Australia). Dampier authored A New Voyage Round the World (1697), no. 782 in the sale catalogue of Southey’s library. BACK

[3] X added in another hand and the following note inserted at the top of the page, below the letter date: ‘a Traveller had thro’ me applied to him to write his Travels for him.’ BACK

[4] X added in another hand and the following note inserted in the margin: ‘he had lost his only son’. [Editors note: Southey’s son Herbert had died on 17April 1816.] BACK

[5] Gooch’s son, Robert Knighton Gooch (1815–1820). BACK

People mentioned

Places mentioned

Keswick (mentioned 1 time)


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