3116. Robert Southey to [George Bellas Greenough], 10 April 1818

3116. Robert Southey to [George Bellas Greenough], 10 April 1818⁠* 


I return you with many thanks your very curious Grammar & Dictionary of the Guarani language. [1]  The Grammar is by no means what it ought to have been after Anchieta had analysed the Tupi, [2]  & Figueira had formed one so much better in its arrangement & disposition of that closely related tongue. [3] 

These books of yours were not only as the title page shows printed in one of the Reductions, – but the types also were cast there, by the Guaranies, in brass.

Believe me Sir

with much respect

yours thankfully & truly

Robert Southey.

Keswick. 10 April. 1818.


* MS: Beinecke Library, Osborn MSS File ‘S’, Folder 14194. ALS; 1p.
Note on correspondent: Identified by the books lent to Southey; Greenough was thanked for supplying these in Southey’s History of Brazil, 3 vols (London, 1810–1819), III, p. vi. BACK

[1] Greenough later donated to the British Museum these two rare editions of books compiled and printed in the Jesuit Reduction of Santa Maria la Mayor (in contemporary Argentina): Antonio Ruiz de Montoya (1585–1652), Vocabulario de la Lengua Guarani (1722) and Arte de la Lengua Guarani (1724). BACK

[2] José de Anchieta (1534–1597), Arte de Grammatica da Lingoa mais Usada na Costa do Brasil (1595), no. 1530 in the sale catalogue of Southey’s library. BACK

[3] Luis Figueira (1573–1643), Arte da Grammatica do Lingua Brasilica (1621). Southey acquired an edition of 1687, no. 3396 in the sale catalogue of his library. This was a guide to the Tupi language. Southey also used an edition of 1795 edited by Jose Mariano da Conceicao Velloso (1742–1811), which he had been lent by the merchant Thomas Kinder (c. 1781–1846), who had lived in South America 1808–1810. BACK

Places mentioned

Keswick (mentioned 1 time)