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The Life and Correspondence of Robert Southey
Robert Southey to Humphrey Senhouse, 15 October 1808

Vol. I Contents
Early Life: I
Early Life: II
Early Life: III
Early Life: IV
Early Life: V
Early Life: VI
Early Life: VII
Early Life: VIII
Early Life: IX
Early Life: X
Early Life: XI
Early Life: XII
Early Life: XIII
Early Life: XIV
Early Life: XV
Early Life: XVI
Early Life: XVII
Ch. I. 1791-93
Ch. II. 1794
Ch. III. 1794-95
Ch. IV. 1796
Ch. V. 1797
Vol. II Contents
Ch. VI. 1799-1800
Ch. VII. 1800-1801
Ch. VIII. 1801
Ch. IX. 1802-03
Ch. X. 1804
Ch. XI. 1804-1805
Vol. III Contents
Ch. XII. 1806
Ch. XIII. 1807
Ch. XIV. 1808
Ch. XV. 1809
Ch. XVI. 1810-1811
Ch. XVII. 1812
Vol. IV Contents
Ch. XVIII. 1813
Ch. XIX. 1814-1815
Ch. XX. 1815-1816
Ch. XXI. 1816
Ch. XXII. 1817
Ch. XXIII. 1818
Ch. XXIV. 1818-1819
Vol. IV Appendix
Vol. V Contents
Ch. XXV. 1820-1821
Ch. XXVI. 1821
Ch. XXVII. 1822-1823
Ch. XXVIII. 1824-1825
Ch. XXIX. 1825-1826
Ch. XXX. 1826-1827
Ch. XXXI. 1827-1828
Vol. V Appendix
Vol. VI Contents
Ch. XXXII. 1829
Ch. XXXIII. 1830
Ch. XXXIV. 1830-1831
Ch. XXXV. 1832-1834
Ch. XXXVI. 1834-1836
Ch. XXXVII. 1836-1837
Ch. XXXVIII. 1837-1843
Vol. VI Appendix
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“Keswick, Oct. 15. 1808.
“My dear Sir,

“I have had a visit this morning from S—— and C—— upon the subject of this convention in Portugal. They, and some of their friends, are very desirous of bringing before the country, in some regular form, the main iniquity of the business,—which has been lost sight of in all the addresses,—and of rectifying public opinion by showing it in its true light.* A military inquiry may or may not convict Sir Hugh Dalrymple of military misconduct. This is the least part of his offence, and no legal proceedings can attach to the heinous crime he has committed; the high treason against all moral feeling, in recognising Junot by his usurped title, and deadening that noble spirit from which, and which only, the redemption of Europe can possible proceed,—by presuming to grant stipulations for the Portuguese which no government ever pretended to have power to make for an independent ally,—covenanting for the impunity of the traitors, and guaranteeing the safety of an

* The feeling of the country seems to have been more generally roused on this occasion than almost on any other:—“The London newspapers joined in one cry of wonder and abhorrence. On no former occasion had they been so unanimous, and scarcely ever was their language so energetic, so manly, so worthy of the English press. The provincial papers proved that from one end of the island to the other the resentment of this grievous wrong was the same. Some refused to disgrace their pages by inserting so infamous a treaty; others surrounded it with broad black lines, putting their journal into mourning for the dismal information it contained.”—Edinburgh Annual Register, 1808, p. 368.

army of ruffians, all of whom, without his intervention, must soon have received their righteous reward from the hands of those whom they had oppressed. He has stepped in to save these wretches from the vengeance of an injured people: he has been dealing with them as fair and honourable enemies, exchanging compliments and visits, dining with them in the palaces from which they had driven the rightful lords, and upon the plate which they had stolen. He, therefore, has abandoned our vantage ground, betrayed the cause of Spain and Portugal, and disclaimed, as far as his authority extends, the feelings which the Spaniards are inculcating, and in which lie their strength and their salvation, by degrading into a common and petty war between soldier and soldier, that which is the struggle of a nation against a foreign usurper, a business of natural life and death, a war of virtue against vice, light against darkness, the good principle against the evil one.

“It is important to make the country feel this; and these sentiments would appear with most effect if they were embodied in a county address, of which the ostensible purport might be to thank his Majesty for having instituted an inquiry, and to request that he would be pleased to appoint a day of national humiliation for this grievous national disgrace. This will not be liable to the reproof with which he thought proper to receive the city address, because it prejudges nothing,—military proceedings are out of the question: what is complained of is, a breach of the law of nations, and an abandonment of the moral principle which the words of the convention
Ætat. 34. OF ROBERT SOUTHEY. 177
prove, and which cannot be explained away by any inquiry whatsoever. . . . .
S— and C— know many persons who will come forward at such a meeting. Coleridge or Wordsworth will be ready to speak, and will draw up resolutions to be previously approved, and brought forward by some proper person. We will prepare the way by writing in the county papers. Here ends my part of the business, and not a little surprised am I to find myself even thus much concerned in any county affairs, when the sole freehold I am ever likely to possess is a tenement, six feet by three, in Crosthwaite churchyard. . . . .

Believe me,
Yours very truly,
Robert Southey.”