2852. Robert Southey to John Murray, 15 October [1816]

2852. Robert Southey to John Murray, 15 October [1816] ⁠* 

Keswick. 15 Oct. 1815. [1] 

My dear Sir

A portion of the article was upon the road when your letter arrived, – & the titles for the heading had all been given at sufficient length. [2]  So far so good; – I am busy upon the remaining part; – & estimate the extent of the whole at not more than two sheets & a half: the conclusion turns upon the state of political opinions in this country, xxx <with> especial reference to the manner in which efforts which are now making to mislead the populace & overthrow the government, – an object which the xxx demagogues now scarcely even affect to disguise. God knows how necessary it is that these things should be exposed. I shall touch also upon the subject of relieving the poor by employing them in agriculture, – instead of manufactures, & adverts to Owens plans as far as they are practicable. [3]  – You had better send me his Essays; [4]  & any of the mischievous publications which have lately appeared: perhaps I may do some good.

For your next number Kosters Travels, & Tongataboo with the South Seas, where we may fitly give Capt Burneys book a place in the heading. [5]  – I am <glad> you are satisfied with Ali Bey, [6]  – these are things which I do thoroughly to my own satisfaction being abundantly provided with the necessary previous knowledge.

Some of Joseph Buonapartes [7]  Spanish Minsters (Azanza & O Farrill I believe) [8]  have published a vindication of themselves. Pray enquire for this book. With my earliest leisure I shall finish the introductory chapter to the Hist: of the War: [9]  – if that were done there is enough ready in sequence to keep the press going, – & unless I get into the press I shall never get out of it. – My second vol. of Brazil [10]  is nearly finished, & I shall carry the concluding one thro the press without intermission, a work of prodigious labour which can never be adequately remunerated, but which has been written con amore, [11]  & will gain me a permanent name in that rising country.

Believe me my dear Sir

Yrs very truly

Robert Southey.


* Address: To/ John Murray Esqr/ Albemarle Street/ London
Stamped: KESWICK/ 298
Postmark: E/ 18 OC 18/ 1816
Watermark: J DICKINSON & Co/ 1811
Endorsement: 1816 Octr 15/ Southey R Esq
MS: National Library of Scotland, MS 42551. ALS; 3p.
Dating note: The letter is misdated ‘1815’ by Southey; the list of recent and forthcoming articles in the Quarterly Review makes it clear that it is from 1816. BACK

[1] Southey misdates; the letter is from 1816. BACK

[2] In Quarterly Review, 15 (July 1816), 537–574, Southey reviewed a series of volumes by travellers in England, under the title ‘Works on England’. This issue appeared on 12 November 1816. Southey warned of the dangers of revolution at 569–574. BACK

[3] Robert Owen (1771–1858; DNB), manager and owner of the mills and model community at New Lanark in Scotland 1799–1825. Southey did not deal with Owen’s plans for combating poverty in Quarterly Review, 15 (July 1816), 537–574. BACK

[4] Robert Owen, A New View of Society: or Essays on the Principle of Formation of the Human Character (1813). BACK

[5] Southey reviewed Henry Koster, Travels in Brazil (1816) in Quarterly Review, 16 (January 1817), 287–321; Southey reviewed, among other books on the Tonga islands, John Martin (1789–1869; DNB), An Account of the Natives of the Tonga Islands, in the South Pacific Ocean, with an Original Grammar and Vocabulary of their Language (1817) in Quarterly Review, 17 (April 1817), 1–39. This book told the story of the ship’s boy William Mariner (1791–1853) who lived in the Tonga islands from 1806 to 1810 after the local people attacked his ship and killed his crewmates. Southey also discussed in the same review Burney’s A Chronological History of the Voyages and Discoveries in the South Sea or Pacific Ocean; Illustrated with Charts and Plates (1816). BACK

[6] In the Quarterly Review, 15 (July 1816), 299–345, Southey reviewed Domingo Badia y Leblich (1766–1818), Travels of Ali Bey in Morocco, Tripoli, Cyprus, Egypt, Arabia, Syria, and Turkey, Between the Years 1803 and 1807 (1816). BACK

[7] Joseph Bonaparte (1768–1844; King of Spain 1808–1813). BACK

[8] Miguel José de Azanza, Duke of Santa Fe (1746–1826), Minister for War 1793–1796, Viceroy of New Spain 1798–1800; and Gonzalo O’Fárrill y Herrera (1754–1831), Minister of War 1808–1813. They published Memoria de D. Miguel José de Azanza y D. Gonzalo O’Farrill, Sobre los Hechos que Justifican su Conducta Politica (1815). BACK

[9] Southey’s History of the Peninsular War, 3 vols (London, 1823–1832), I, pp. 3–62. BACK

[10] Southey’s History of Brazil (1810–1819). BACK

[11] ’with love’. BACK

People mentioned

Burney, James (1750–1821) (mentioned 1 time)
Koster, Henry (1793–1820) (mentioned 1 time)

Places mentioned

Keswick (mentioned 1 time)