2457. Robert Southey to John Rickman, 8 July 1814

2457. Robert Southey to John Rickman, 8 July 1814 ⁠* 

8 July 1814

My dear R.

I have desired Bedford to leave with you a little supply of the το ζν [1]  of this world state of society for Robert Lovell.

I wish I could think Lord Cochrane were innocent. If he is so, the best means of inducing the world to believe it, would be for the guilty persons to make oath that he was only accidentally & innocently involved with them. This is so straight forward a course that its omission makes heavily against him. [2] 

A paragraph of two lines dated from Rome says the Pope has given notice that he will reestablish the Jesuits. [3]  This I would do were I Pope. To me who have at this time a good third of my thoughts full of Paraguay & their expulsion, [4]  this is more interesting than any other news could be.




* Address: To/ John Rickman Esqre
Endorsement: RS/ 8 July 1814
MS: Huntington Library, RS 229. ALS; 2p.
Unpublished. BACK

[1] ‘The one (thing)’. Southey is ironically applying the phrase to describe ‘The one thing that this world acknowledges to be fundamental and to matter’, i.e. cash. BACK

[2] The naval officer and MP for Westminster since 1807, Thomas Cochrane, 10th Earl of Dundonald (1775–1860; DNB). In February 1814 Cochrane’s uncle, Andrew Cochrane-Johnstone (1767–1833), and a Frenchman called Charles Random de Berenger (fl. 1800s–1830s) perpetrated an ingenious fraud by spreading false news of Napoleon’s death, leading to a rapid rise and then fall in the price of government funds, from which they benefited by dealing in these stocks. Cochrane protested he was innocent of any involvement, but he was convicted with the others. He was fined £1000; sentenced to one year’s imprisonment in the King’s Bench and to stand for an hour in the pillory. The latter was remitted. In addition, Cochrane was struck off the navy list, and expelled from the House of Commons and from the chapel of the Knights of the Bath. BACK

[3] Pius VII (1742–1823), pontiff since 1800, restored the Society of Jesus (which had been suppressed in 1773), in a Bull of 7 August 1814. BACK

[4] Events covered in the second volume of Southey’s History of Brazil, published in 1817. The Jesuits were expelled from Paraguay in 1767. BACK

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