1211. Robert Southey to Grosvenor Charles Bedford, 15 August 1806 *
My dear Grosvenor
I do not like writing to you – & you will immediately see why. Our house is in a very comfortless state. Tom is laid up with the ague, – in addition to which he has the piles in so damnable a degree that God knows when he will be cured. The measles have found their way here, – one of the children (you know Coleridges are in the same house) is just recovered, – the rest must have it, & it is one of the plagues of this infernal disorder that it requires a fortnight for the infection to ripen – so that unless they all take it from one – it may stay in the family these six weeks. The long & the short is that the house is full of sickness & of people at the same time, – & I had rather you would come in October – when we shall have got rid of both. Into the bargain – I strongly suspect that the unborn will be here before he or she is xxx or they are expected.  Now Grosvenor it would mortify & vex me if when you came I should not be able to make the house thoroughly comfortable to you, & to be as happy – as boyish & as butlerish  as I have long been looking on to be. – By the middle of October – God willing, this will be the case, – probably by the beginning, – & this will not be too late for our country – tho certainly a little earlier is better. Zounds – I am as uneasy & as uncomfortabell as a Turtle at this lying on his back at the Bush Tavern,  or a barrelled oyster travelling by the mail.
I have written for memoirs of Churchey  – & you shall have them when they come. there are some biographies to send you & a preface to finish – but all your queries have been categorically answered  – I will write to you in my very first hour of sunshiny spirits – meantime God bless you – & me into the bargain –
 Walter Churchey (1747–1805; DNB), a Welsh poet who published Poems and Imitations of the British Poets in 1789. Southey had written to Joseph Cottle regarding Churchey; see Southey to Joseph Cottle, 11 August 1806, Letter 1210. BACK