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Robert Southey (1774-1843)
London: Printed for Longman, Hurst, Rees, and Orme, and A. Constable and Co. Edinburgh, 1805
First edition
PR5464 M2 1805

Robert Southey was an English poet, a follower of the Romantic Movement, one of the “Lake Poets.” He was appointed poet laureate in 1813. Together with his good friend Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772-1834), he planned to found a utopian community on the Susquehanna River in the United States. While this plan never came to fruition, it is probable that Madoc was inspired by this dream. The four hundred and forty-nine page poem, accompanied by one hundred and four pages of notes is the story of a Welsh king, who, around 1169, settled on the Missouri River in America and founded a great race of Indians, the “Aztecas.” The legend of Madoc is more familiarly associated with the Mandan tribe of North Dakota. During the eighteenth century, white explorers and trappers heard stories of a small, peaceful tribe living in Western North Dakota, some of whom had blue eyes, blonde hair and spoke Welsh. It was believed that this tribe was descended from a Welsh settlement on the Ohio River in the mid-fourteenth century. Engraved title-page. Bound in contemporary three-quarter green morocco with marbled endpapers and edges.