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The Life and Correspondence of Robert Southey
Robert Southey to Grosvenor C. Bedford, 17 May 1812

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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“May 17. 1812.
“My dear Grosvenor,

“I received a note from Lord Lonsdale on Saturday, enclosing a reply from Lord Hertford to his
application; which reply states that a previous arrangement had been made for the office of historiographer. Thinking you would be likely to know this as soon as myself, I did not write to you. My interest was better than I expected. Upon Lord Lonsdale I had reckoned; but
Scott wrote for me to Lord Melville, and seemed to depend upon success. I have now done with the state lottery. Of all things possible I most desired an appointment at Lisbon; if it had been given me when it was desired, and when it would have been honourable in Fox so to have given it, knowing as he did my motive for wishing it, it would have involved me (owing to the subsequent troubles) in pecuniary difficulties which perhaps I should never have surmounted. That hope having failed, I looked to that good ship the Historiographer, believing myself better qualified for the post than most men, and, more than any other man, ambitious of fulfilling its duties; but that good ship, it seems, is still destined to be so ill manned as to be perfectly useless.

“This evening I have a letter from Canning, couched in the most handsome and friendly terms. He does not know that the office is disposed of, but hints at difficulties in the way of his obtaining it (even supposing he were in power), which Gifford has explained. He concludes with expressions and professions of good will, which I doubt not are sincere. But there is nothing to which I can look forward.

“Say to Gifford that I must beg him to end with my article instead of beginning with it. I am close pressed with the Register, which this week will bring,
Ætat. 38. OF ROBERT SOUTHEY. 341
I hope and trust, to a conclusion.
Mr. Ballantyne’s historiographer is well paid, but the office is no sinecure.

“I wish you were here to see the country in full beauty. Your godson has just learnt to read Greek, and I expect in my next parcel a grammar and vocabulary for him. He promises well, if it please God that he should live. God bless you!

R. S.”