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The Flinders papersletters and documents about the explorer Matthew Flinders (1774-1814)
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Letter from Matthew Flinders to Ann Flinders (18 of 41) (FLI25) Page 1

The Revd Mr Tyler
      Partney near Spilsby
For Mrs Flinders

Annotation: March 22 – 1805     No 22

Annotation: Nov.4.1804 No alteration

                                  Isle of France August 26 1804

    A second opportunity of writing to my dear friends now presents itself, the
first occurred about five weeks since. I yesterday enjoyed a delicious piece
of misery in reading over thy dear letters, my beloved Ann. Shall I tell thee
that I have never before done it since I have been shut up in this prison.
The first day of January I dedicated to the "Pleasures of Memory", and was
violently tempted to go further, but I rushed into something else and
escaped further addition to the misery of recollection. It is a general
and benumbing course of misery that I undergo in this imprisonment, but
by dwelling upon thy most charming letters every little of thy tender anxiety
and distreƒs is afresh call up in a vivid colouring to my maddened imagi-
-nation. I am as it were shut up in a cask and that has been rolled with
violence from the top of hope down into the vale of misfortune; I am
bruised and well nigh stunned out of my senses; but canst thou imagine
the addition it would be to this misery for the cask to have been driven
full of spike nails; — such is the increase of misery to my feelings
on thinking intensely on thee. I have many friends who are kind and are
much interested for me, and I certainly love them, but yet before thee
they vanish as stars before the rays of a morning sun. I cannot con-
-nect the idea of happineƒs with any thing but thee: — without thee
the world would be a blank. I might indeed receive some gratifica-
-tion from distinction and the applause of society, but where would
be the faithful friend who would enjoy and share this with me, and
into whose bosom my full heart could unburthen itself of its exceƒs
of joy. Where would be that sweet intercourse of soul, that fine sea-
-soning to happineƒs, without which a degree of insipidity attends
all our enjoyments? From thee, my beloved, and thee alone it is
that I look to receive this zest for life, this height of luxury.
    Thou ^ hast given me distreƒsing accounts of thy eyes, and the state of thy
health, — I fear to think it poƒsible that attacks upon these should
have returned since thy letters of September 1802 was written from Boston;
but the cold weather is terrible for thee. Oh that thou wast here in this
genial climate. It is not now too warm, and even in a prison we would
be happy if together. This is a large house in which eight English offi-
-cers now live. We have our seperate apartments and servants, and a
garden of about two acres in which we walk as we are disposed.
A wall surrounds the garden and house, and the gate is kept by a

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Related people
Tyler, (Reverend) William
Chappelle (Flinders), Ann
Aken (Aiken), John
De Caen, Charles Mathieu Isadore
Tyler, Isabella (Belle/Bell)
Flinders, Matthew
Franklin family

Boston (England)
Gulf of Carpentaria
Ile de France (Mauritius)


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