Jeremy Bentham

Catherine Fuller (ed.), The Collected Works of Jeremy Bentham: The Correspondence of Jeremy Bentham, Vol. 11: January 1822 to June 1824

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Editor’s Note2852To Sir Samuel Bentham22 February 1822 (Aet 74)

Q.S.P. 22 Feb. 1822.

Well: now you have the last word. Be it so. And now kiss and be friends. Ten days this letter of your's2 has been in my hands and they seem ten ages: for, for fear of disturbance in my pursuits, I put off the opening it till this moment, tormented with remorse all the while: and a correspondent length of time you have been plagued with the thought of the difficulty about the £100.3 I could as well have borrowed it of him4 as of you: but, as matters have turned out, I have no need of it: therefore I shall not make any use of that letter of yours to him.

I have read but a small part of your justificatory matter: and perhaps I may not read the rest of it while I live. I do not see any great use it could be to either of us that to carry on a paper war we should abstract ourselves from our several pursuits.

Now what does all the war on my part and all this fear of your letters arise from? From what but my affection for you? For were it not for that, what need have I to trouble myself about you. What is it that I look for at your hands? Just nothing: which is not exactly the case on your side.

I am proverbial for unabashed sincerity, good humour and gaiety in my dealings with every body but you. I am so hunted by the printer I must finish this abruptly. This being friday and no other post till tuesday, I will not forbear any longer to put an end to any anxiety you may be feeling for the not having heard from me, as soon as possible after my receipt of your last.

pg 31An account of the books sent for Dr5 I make no little doubt of sending you by next post.

You speak of Portugueze as one of George's6 present or future languages. I shall put his skill to a slight trial by next post. Copy of a letter from the Cortes of the 22d Dec.7 telling me of a copy they have sent me of their journals with an assurance of the numbers being transmitted through their Minister here as they come out. It speaks of a former Letter of the 3d Decr8 I think of as written by the Secretary in pursuance of the Order of the House of the 26 Novr: in which letter I have reason to think, a formal acceptance was given to an offer of mine to codify for them. So I was assured by a Portugueze who said he had seen the corresponding number of their Journals. Somehow or other that former letter has never come to hand. So I inform them in an answer sent to them I think it was last Wednesday sennight.9 Other illustrations [ … ?]

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Editor’s Note
2852. 1 BL IX. 540, Autograph. Addressed: 'To / Sir Samuel Bentham / &c &c &c / Montpellier / France'. Postmark: 'F / 22 /103'. According to Colls's Journal (BL XXVII. 98), this letter was taken to the foreign post on the day it was written. Bentham's Memorandum Book (UC, clxxiii. 67) contains notes on some of the points trade in this letter.
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2 Missing.
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3 See Letter 2843.
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4 Not identified.
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5 i.e. Dr Russell, referred to again in Letter 2853, but not further identified.
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6 George Bentham (1800–84), Samuel and Mary Sophia Bentham's second and only surviving son, was later a botanist.
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7 See Letter 2838, Correspondence, x. Bentham sent a copy of this letter to Samuel Bentham on 27 February 1822: see Letter 2853.
Editor’s Note
8 Letter 2829, Correspondence, x, a duplicate of which Bentham received on 22 April 1822 with Letter 2859 below.
Editor’s Note
9 i.e. Letter 2846, dated 30 January 1822.
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