November 1 1815: Southey is Home

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On November 1 1815,  Robert Southey, in London,  writes to his brother Thomas Southey.

My dear Tom –  Here we are, thank God alive & well, after a long journey, & a bad passage, – 12 hours from Calais – from 6 at night till 6 in the morning, eight of those hours under bare poles in mid-channel, the men declaring they never saw the sky look dirtier. Our route was Ostend – Bruges, Ghent – Brussels, Waterloo – Les Quatre Bras & Ligny – Namur, Huy – Liege, Spa, Vervier, Herve, Aix la Chapelle, (where we were detained six days by Shedaws illness) – Maestricht, Tongres, Louvain, & Brussels again. Thence a second time to Waterloo, for the purpose of having some sketches made by Nash, an artist who was one of our companions throughout the whole journey. From Brussels to Mechlin, Antwerp, Ghent, Courtray, Menin, Ypres, {Poperinghe} – then upon French ground thro Bergues, Dunkirk & Gravelines to Calais. Never was time more fully employed, & I hope not often has it been better spent. I have brought home a full & minute journal,  which occupied almost every moment that I was not either  in motion, eating, or sleeping. The Doctor we never met till we came here to Q Anne Street.

Harry desires me to say that he did not find your letter till three weeks after its date, when it was of course useless to look for Grove.

I have not yet seen my Uncle.

You shall hear from me as soon as I get to Streatham or Champion Hill, [3] – that is, as soon I can command an hour to myself.

Love to Sarah & the young ones. – I have much to tell you of what I have seen & heard –

God bless you

RS.

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