291. To Thomas Poole Address: Mr T. Poole | Nether Stowey | Bridgewater | Somerset MS. British Museum. Pub. with orals. Letters, i. 305. Stamped: Exeter. Exeter -- Southey's Lodgings, Mr Tucker's, Forestreet Hill Monday Night Sep. 16 1799. My dear Poole Here I am, just returned from a little Tour of five days -having seen rocks; and waterfalls; & a pretty River or two; some ____________________ 1 This fragment may be an answer to Wordsworth's letter, which Coleridge received on 10 Sept. See Letter 288. -527- wide Landscapes; & a multitude of Ash-tree Dells; & the blue waters of the [']ROARING Seal' as little Hartley says -- who on Friday fell down stairs, & injured his arm -- 'tis swelled, & sprained; but God be praised, not broken. ---- The Views of Totness & Dartmouth are among the most impressive Things, I have ever seen / but in general, what of Devonshire I have lately traversed is tame to Quantock, Porlock, Culbone, & Linton. ---- So much for the Country -- now as to the inhabitants thereof, they are Bigots; unalphabeted in the first Feelings of Liberality; of course, in all they speak and all they do not speak, they give good reasons for the opinions which they hold -- viz. they hold the propriety of Slavery -- an opinion which being generally assented to by Englishmen makes Pitt & Paul the first among the moral Fitnesses of Things. -- I have three Brothers / that is to say, Relations by Gore -- two are Parsons and one is a Colonel -- George & the Colonel good men as times go -- very good men; but alas! we have neither Tastes or Feelings in common. This I wisely learnt from their Conversation; & did not suffer them to learn it from mine/What occasion for it? -- Hunger & Thirst -Roast Fowls, mealy Potatoes, Pies, & Clouted Cream -- bless the Inventors thereoff An honest Philosoph may find therewith preoccupation for his mouth/keeping his heart & brain, the latter in his Skull, the former in the Pericardium, some 5 or 6 Inches from the Roots of his Tongue! -- Church & King! -- Why, I drink Church & King -- mere cutaneous Scabs of Loyalty which only ape the King's Evil, but affect not the Interior of one's Health -Mendicant Sores! -- it requires some little Caution to keep them open, but they heal of their own accord. ---- Who such a friend as I am to the system of Fraternity could refuse such a Toast at the Table of a Clergyman and a Colonel -- his Brothers? -- /So, my dear Poole! I live in Peace--. ---- Of the other party, I have dined with a Mr Northmore, 1 a pupil of Wakefield's, who possesses a fine House half a mile from Exeter -- in his Boyhood he was at my Father's School -- & my Great-Grandfather was his Great great Grandfather's Bastard / but it was not this relationship however tender & interesting, which brought us acquainted / -- But Southey & self called upon him, as Authors, he having edited a Tryphiodorus & part of Plutarch & being a notorious Antiministerialist & Freethinker. -- He welcomed us, as he ought to do / -- and we met at dinner Hucks, at whose House I dine on Wednesday -- the man who toured with me into Wales & afterwards published his Tour -- / Kendall, a poet who really looks like a man of Genius, pale ____________________ 1 Thomas Northmore ( 1766-1851). Coleridge mentions his Tρυφιοδώρου ˒Iλίου "AΛωσις. De plurimis mendis purgata, et notis illustrata, 1791, and his Plutarch's Treatise upon the Distinction between a Friend and Flatterer, with Remarks, 1793. -528- & gnostic, has the merit of being a Jacobin or so / but is a shallowist/ and finally, a Mr Bamfield 1 -- a man of sense, information, & various Literature -- and most perfectly a Gentleman -- in short, a pleasant man. At his House we dine to morrow -- / Northmore himself is an honest vehement sort of Fellow, who splutters out all his opinions, like a Fizgig made of Gunpowder not thoroughly dry / sudden & explosive yet ever with an adhesive Blubberliness of Elocution -- Shallow, shallow -- a man who can read Greek well, but shallow -- / yet honest, one who ardently wishes the well-being of his fellow men, & believes that without more Liberty & more Equality this Well being is not possible. He possesses a most noble Library. The Victory at Novi! 2 -- If I were a good Caricaturist, I would sketch off Suwarrow, in a Car of Conquest drawn by huge Crabs!! with what retrograde Majesty the Vehicle advances! He may truly say he came off with Eclat -- i.e. A claw! -- I shall be back at Stowey in less than three weeks -- in the mean time I intreat you, my dearest Poole I to send Ward to my House and on one of the Shelves in the Parlour he will [find] Green's Pamphlet on Godwin 3 -- this he or you will not forget to take on Thursday to Bridgewater, & have it booked in the Exeter Coach, directed to / Mr Southey, at Mr Tucker's, Forestreet Hill, Exeter -- & Southey will walk over with it to me/. This is of the utmost Importance/. --. Likewise, my dear Poole! be so kind as to let me have five guineas / which shall not be long on your Books against us. -- This you will be so good as to transmit to Southey in a letter, from whom I have borrowed it, as soon as convenient -- at all events, within a week or 8 days / as Southey leaves Exeter about that Time / -- /. We hope & trust, your dear Mother remains well. -- Give my filial love to her. -- God bless her! -- I beg my kind Love to Ward. ---- God bless you & S. T. Coleridge Of course, I am uneasy about a House Business --. I am pretty certain, I could have a Pupil on very advantageous Terms. What do you think of this? Let me hear immediately from you -- Of course, you wrote to Stutfield about the Shirt --. -- Southey begs his kind remembrance to you. ____________________ 1 In Letter 298 Coleridge spells this name Banfyl; Southey refers to him as Banfill. 2 At Novi Ligure, Italy, an army of Russians and Austrians under Suvaroff and Melas defeated the French on 15 Aug. 1799. 3 Thomas Green, An Examination of the leading Principles of the New System of Morals in Godwin's Political Justice, 1798. -529-