[Sydney Smith, 'The Smith of Smiths', wit and author, on losing 'the inestimable advantage of being a Yorkshireman'.] Autograph Letter Signed to Richard Monckton Milnes, the future Lord Houghton, on several topics.]

Sydney Smith (1771-1845), 'The Smith of Smiths', wit, author and cleric [Richard Monckton Milnes (1809-1885), Lord Houghton, poet, politician and patron of the arts; James Garth Marshall (1802-1873)]
Publication details: 
Combe Florey, Taunton [Somerset]. 14 July 1841.
SKU: 21201

2pp, 4to. Bifolium, addressed, with broken seal in red wax, on reverse of second leaf, to 'R. M. Milnes Esq | Pall Mall | London'. In fair condition, lightly aged, with stub from mount adhering. Folded three times. The earlier part of the letter is reproduced in Smith's daughter Lady Holland's 1855 memoir of him. Smith begins the letter by stating that he is 'very much oblig'd' by Milnes's 'kindness in procuring for me the papier Chimique – pray let me know what I am in your debt it is best to be scrupulous and punctilious in trifles'. Smith continues: 'I should be very unhappy about McLeod & America if I had not impressed upon myself in the course of a long Life – that there is always some misery of this kind hanging over us & that being unhappy does no good.' He consoles himself with 'Dodridges [sic] expositor the Scholar arm'd to say nothing of a very popular book calld the dissenter trippd up'.' The final paragraph is not reproduced by Lady Holland: 'I read with great pleasure Ld Fitzwilliams Letter to Marshall [James Garth Marshall (1802-1873), Leeds 'millocrat'] and with any thing but pleasure Marshalls absurd & [mischievous?] Answer. If I had not lost the inestimable advantage of being a Yorkshireman – I would comb that flax dresser into some comeliness and order'.