University of Texas, Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center

Robert Southey:

An Inventory of His Collection at the Harry Ransom Center

Creator: Southey, Robert, 1774-1843
Title: Robert Southey Collection
Dates: 1797-1877, undated
Abstract: Includes manuscripts and letters written by the English poet, essayist, biographer, and translator Robert Southey. Most of Southey's letters in the collection are written to John May, his financial adviser and agent, but there are also letters to Henry Crabb Robinson, Anna Seward, wife Edith Fricker Southey, and daughter Edith May Southey Warter. Also present are two commonplace books that belonged to Warter as well as other family letters.
Call Number: Manuscript Collection MS-3923
Extent: 3 boxes (1.26 linear feet)
Language: English, French, Greek, and Portuguese
Repository: The University of Texas at Austin, Harry Ransom Center



Open for research

Administrative Information

Processed by:

Joan Sibley and Jamie Hawkins-Kirkham, 2011

Note: This finding aid replicates and replaces information previously available only in a card catalog. Please see the explanatory note at the end of this finding aid for information regarding the arrangement of the manuscripts as well as the abbreviations commonly used in descriptions.

Container List


1.1 Unidentified poem, As if dominion here could joy…, handwritten manuscript / fragment, 1 page, undated.
Cockchaffer (Scarabaeus Melolontha or Scarabaeus Vorax), handwritten manuscript with revisions, 1 leaf, undated (1815 watermark).
1.2 Collections and remarks on the Reform Bill, handwritten manuscript, approximately 225 pages, undated. Some notes in French, Greek, and Portuguese. Bound with printed clippings. From the Wrenn Collection.
1.1 Madoc / titled 10. Mathraval, handwritten manuscript / fragment, 4 leaves, undated.
Mr. Morris of Pennsylvania and Arz Begs / first line An individual whose piety it would be wrong to question…, handwritten manuscript, 3 pages on 2 leaves, undated. Note of verification by Charles C. Southey, 1846.
1.3 The poetical works of Robert Southey collected by himself… : Preface to the fourth volume, handwritten manuscript with revisions, 4 pages on 2 leaves, 1837. For the 10 volume edition of Southey's works published 1837-1838. From the Stark Collection.
1.1 The preface, handwritten manuscript / incomplete with several revisions, 4 pages on 1 leaf, undated.
1.4 Review of Gregoire's Historié de Theophilantropie, handwritten manuscript, 38 pages, undated. From the Stark Collection.
1.1 Try the odes in a lyrical measure…, handwritten manuscript re Southey's poem Madoc, 2 pages, undated.


1.5 ALS / fragment to unidentified recipient, undated. Included with this: visiting card signed by Southey with ANI by L. T. F. on verso.
ALS to unidentified recipient re Wordsworth and Coleridge, 25 April 1812.
ALS to unidentified recipient, 30 April 1828.
ALS to unidentified recipient, 31 October 1832.
ALS to Christy, Joseph, 16 April 1834.
ALS to Clements, William, 25 November 1829.
ALI to Crothers, Mrs., undated.
ALS to Gibson, John, 8 February 1825.
ALS to Heraud, John Abraham, 17 March 1834. From the Hanley Collection.
170 ALS, ANS to May, John, 1797-1838:
1.6 1797-1799.
1.7 1800-1803.
1.8 1803-1805.
1.9 1806-1811.
1.10 1812-1815.
1.11 1816-1819.
2.1 1820-1823.
2.2 1824-1827.
2.3 1828-1832.
2.4 1833-1838.
2.5 5 ALS, AL to May, John, 27 January 1807, 12 October 1808, 15 June 1821, 27 June 1824, 5 April 1837, 22 January 1838. Previously bound. From the Wrenn Collection. Not described in card catalog.
1.5 ALS to Morgan, John James, 6 February 1809.
ALS to Robinson, Henry Crabb, 18 January 1820.
ALS to Seward, Miss Anna, 13 February 1808.
ALS to Southey, Edith Fricker, 29 May 1798.
2 ALS to Warter, Edith May Southey, 30 December 1823, 11 January 1824.


2.6 Atherstone, Edwin, 1788-1872. ALS to Southey, 22 February 1830. Bound with ALS from William Browne to Southey, undated.
Browne, William. ALS to Southey, undated. Bound with this: 11 letter covers addressed to Southey and 4 additional leaves, pasted together to form a booklet, with handwritten notes on them. One letter cover and one leaf loosely laid in. Also laid in: Samuel Rogers ALS to Southey, 29 June 1828; Edwin Atherstone ALS to Southey, 22 February 1830.
Rogers, Samuel. ALS to Southey, 29 June 1828. Bound with ALS from William Browne to Southey, undated.
Southey, Henry Herbert, 1783-1865. AL / copy / extract to Robert Southey, undated. In Robert Southey's hand.


2.7 Unidentified author. AL / incomplete / copy to Hesketh, Harriett Cowper, Lady, 26 May 1804. Copy in Robert Southey's hand. Written with this: AL / incomplete / copy Lady Harriett to William Hayley, undated.
Bell, Andrew, 1753-1832. ALS to Warter, Edith May Southey, 23 October 1822.
Fielding, Antony Vandyke Copley, 1787-1855. ALS to Warter, John Wood, undated.
Fielding, Antony Vandyke Copley, Mrs. AL to Warter, John Wood and Edith May Southey containing On the death of Mr. Copley Fielding by Reverend Charles Townsend, 1855. Also contains printed poem To the memory of Copley Fielding by Charles Townsend.
Hill, Herbert, 1810-1892. Epitaph. In loving memory of Bertha, handwritten manuscript, 3 pages on 2 leaves, December 1877. With this: Epitaph. Edith Margaret Hill, 1 page.
Southey, Robert:
2.7 Extracts and notes, 2 handwritten manuscripts in Southey's hand, 2 pages on 1 leaf; 1 page; undated. Subjects: contemporary poetry; the headdresss of the Sophis.
Miscellaneous quotations and notes, handwritten manuscripts, several signed by Southey, 25 pages on 19 leaves, one quotation dated 15 March 1824, the rest undated. Sources of most quotations are indicated.
Notes to his Colloquies, handwritten manuscript, 1 leaf, undated.
2.8 Warter, Edith May Southey, 1804-1871. Commonplace book, handwritten manuscript, approximately 85 leaves, undated. Includes poems by Robert Southey, one in his hand (page 31); also contains many drawings and pressed flowers and leaves.
2.9 Warter, Edith May Southey, 1804-1871. Commonplace book, handwritten manuscript, 216 pages on 109 leaves, 1824-1850. In various hands, mainly John Wood Warter.
3.1 Warter, John Wood, 1806-1878. The last of the old squires. London: Longman, Brown, Green, and Longmans, 1854. Printed copy interleaved with handwritten commentary and corrections, 89 pages of manuscript.
3.2 Original housing for The poetical works of Robert Southey collected by himself… : Preface to the fourth volume and letters to John May.

Explanatory Note Concerning Manuscript Collections Cataloged in the Card Catalog

Prior to 1990 when archival cataloging procedures were adopted at the Ransom Center, all manuscript collections were described in a card catalog.

Organization of Collections:

Manuscripts for each author collection were organized into four categories:

  • Works: manuscripts by the author, arranged alphabetically by title;
  • Letters: the author's outgoing correspondence, arranged alphabetically by recipient name;
  • Recipient: the author's incoming correspondence, arranged alphabetically by the author of the letter; and
  • Miscellaneous: all other manuscripts and correspondence, arranged alphabetically by creator.

Materials that did not fit into these categories, such as art, photographs, books, and near-print materials such as newspaper clippings, were dispersed to other Ransom Center collections for cataloging and storage.

Abbreviations Used in Descriptions:

The symbols below were used in combinations. For example ALS means autograph letter signed; Tccms means typed carbon copy manuscript, etc.

  • A = autograph (i.e., handwritten)
  • T = typed
  • S = signed
  • I = initialed
  • Ms = manuscript
  • Mss = manuscripts
  • L = letter
  • FL = form letter
  • N = note
  • D = document
  • C = card
  • PC = post card
  • cc = carbon copy
  • p = page
  • pp = pages
  • l = leaf
  • ll = leaves
  • nd = no date
  • inc d = incomplete date