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The Life and Correspondence of Robert Southey
Robert Southey to Grosvenor C. Bedford, 20 December 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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“Dec. 20. 1808.
“My dear Grosvenor,

“Here is my vindication of the Indian Mission packed up on the table; but, unluckily, too late for to-day’s coach, so it cannot reach London before Monday. It is written with hearty good-will, and requires no signature to show whence it comes. Now I wish you would ask Mr. Gifford—if he thinks it expedient to use the pruning-knife—to let the copy be returned to me when the printer has done with it, because it is ten to one that the passages which he would curtail—being the most Robert Southeyish of the whole—would be those that I should like best myself; and, therefore, I would have the satisfaction of putting them in again for my own satisfaction, if for nobody’s else. I must still confess to you, Grosvenor, that I have my fears and
Ætat. 34. OF ROBERT SOUTHEY. 199
suspicions as to the freedom of the
Review, and this article will, in some measure, put it to the proof: for it is my nature and my principle to speak and—write as earnestly, as plainly, and as straight to the mark as I think and feel. If the editor understands his own interest, he will not restrict me. A Review started against the Edinburgh will instantly be suspected of being a ministerial business, and a sprinkling of my free and fearless way of thinking, will win friends for it among those very persons most likely to be prejudiced against it, and to be misled by the Scotchmen. The high orthodox men, both of Church and State, will always think as they are told; there is no policy in writing to them; the Anti-Jacobin and British Critic are good enough for their faces of brass, brains of lead, and tongues of bell-metal. I shall not offend them, though my reasonings appeal to better hearts and clearer understandings. I would say this to him if I knew him; but I do not desire you to say it, because I do not know how far it might suit the person to whom it relates.

“Spain! Spain! . . . were the resources of the nation at my command, I would stake my head upon the deliverance of that country, and the utter overthrow of Bonaparte. But, good God! what blunders, what girlish panics, what absolute cowardice are there in our measures! Disembarking troops when we ought to be sending ship after ship as fast as they could be put on board. It is madness to wait for transports; send ships of the line, and let them run singly for Lisbon, and Cadiz, and Catalonia. Nothing can ruin the Spaniards unless they
feel the misconduct of England as I am grieved to say I feel it. It is the more heart-breaking because the heart of England is with those noble people. We are not only ready, willing, and able to make every effort for them, but even eager to do it; and yet all is palsied by plans so idiotic that the horsewhip were a fitter instrument of punishment for them than the halter, if it were not for their deadly consequences. God bless you!

R. S.”