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A Memoir of the Reverend Sydney Smith
Letters 1813
Sydney Smith to Lady Holland, 17 January 1813

Author's Preface
Chapter I
Chapter II
Chapter III
Chapter IV
Chapter V
Chapter VI
Chapter VII
Chapter VIII
Chapter IX
Chapter X
Chapter XI
Chapter XII
Editor’s Preface
Letters 1801
Letters 1802
Letters 1803
Letters 1804
Letters 1805
Letters 1806
Letters 1807
Letters 1808
Letters 1809
Letters 1810
Letters 1811
Letters 1812
Letters 1813
Letters 1814
Letters 1815
Letters 1816
Letters 1817
Letters 1818
Letters 1819
Letters 1820
Letters 1821
Letters 1822
Letters 1823
Letters 1824
Letters 1825
Letters 1826
Letters 1827
Letters 1828
Letters 1829
Letters 1830
Letters 1831
Letters 1832
Letters 1833
Letters 1834
Letters 1835
Letters 1836
Letters 1837
Letters 1838
Letters 1839
Letters 1840
Letters 1841
Letters 1842
Letters 1843
Letters 1844
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Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.
Produced by CATH
January 17th, 1813.
My dear Lady Holland,

I have innumerable thanks to return to you for the kind solicitude you have displayed respecting my rural architecture. I have explained myself so fully to Allen upon the convenience and necessity of this measure, that I will not bore you any more with the subject; but I must add a word upon the Archbishop’s conversation with Abercrombie. Is it not a little singular, that his Grace, in all the various conversations I have had with him on this subject,—on the promise I made to him to build,—on the complaints I have frequently made to him of the great hardships and expense of building, when I laid be-
fore him my plans,—that he should never have given me the most distant hint, directly or indirectly, that such a process could be in honour dispensed with? Is it not singular that he should have reserved this friendly charge of supererogation, till I had burnt my bricks, bought my timber, and got into a situation in which it was more prudent to advance than to recede? The Archbishop is a friendly, good man; but such is not the manner of laymen. It would be a bad comfort to an Indian widow, who was half-burnt, if the head Brahmin were to call out to her, “Remember, it is your own act and deed; I never ordered you to burn yourself.”

We have had meetings here of the clergy, upon the subject of the Catholic question, but none in my district; if there be, I shall certainly give my solitary voice in favour of religious liberty, and shall probably be tossed in a blanket for my pains.

Conceive the horror of fourteen men hung yesterday! And yet it is difficult to blame the Judges for it, though it would be some relief to be able to blame them. The murderers of Horsefall were all Methodists; one of them, I believe, a preacher.

I hope you will take a ramble to the North this year. You want a tour; nothing does you so much good. Come and alarm the village, as you did before. Your coming has produced the same impression as the march of Alexander or Bacchus over India, and will be as long remembered in the traditions of the innocent natives. They still believe Antonio to have been an ape. Pray accept a Yorkshire ham, which set off yesterday, directed to Lord Holland, St. James’s-square, by waggon which comes to the Bull and Mouth;
it weighs twenty pounds. I mention these particulars, because, when a thing is sent, it may as well be received, and not be changed.

Sydney Smith.