Decr 5 1825.
My dear Henry
I have not returned so long as you suppose, having arrived here only on the 22nd November I was detained a week at Plymouth by an attack of illness. I can assure you I was not so fortunate as you imagine in escaping those tremendous gales in the beginning of November – That of the 3rd was the most awful I ever saw or remember – luckily we had good searoom being 300 miles to the Westward of Oporto. We had rain, sleet, hail, thunder & lightning & the most prodigious sea I ever saw – We had also a very smart North Easter in the chops of the channel with very hard snow-squalls, in short nine days out of thirteen it blew a gale of wind. And yet we went through it all as comfortably as if we had been in harbour, except once when a sea broke on board & made its way down on our dinner table – I am sure as you interest yourself in these matters, you will be glad to hear that the Galatea <2> is as easy as an old glove, & as stiff as a church –
I have no intention of going to Paris before January or February but I have a mind to go to London for a few days, I am coming to Moreton <3> where I hope I shall see you, & as Jane <4> informs me you are going to London, perhaps we might arrange to go together – I shall be delighted to meet you at Corfu my plan is to land at Bordeaux go to Bayonne Madrid Seville & meet the yacht at Cadiz thence to Malaga & Granada & then up the Mediterranean coasting the Spanish shore to avoid the necessity of frequent quarantine – I never regretted leaving <any?> <5> place more than Cadiz, the glorious situation & climate produced a cons<idble?> elasticity of spirit which I miss in this hazy damp atmosphere, I could not have brought myself to leave it had not the Galatea required fitting up her cabins afresh. Next time I pass that way I must have myself like Ulysses lashed to the mainmast, or I shall never see Naples –
Believe me Dear Henry Your Aff Cousin
Swansea December five. 1825 Chrishr Cole. <6>
Henry Talbot Esqre
1. Penrice Castle and Penrice House, Gower, Glamorgan, 10 mi SW of Swansea: home of Christopher Rice Mansel Talbot.
2. Christopher Talbot’s yacht.
3. Moreton, Dorset: home of the Frampton family.
4. Jane Harriot Nicholl, née Talbot (1796–1874).
5. Text torn away under seal.
6. Sir Christopher Cole (1770–1836), Captain, MP & naval officer.