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 Note3069To John Bowring14 March 1824(Aet 76)

  • Q.S.P. ½ after 10 A.M.
  • 14 March 1824

J. Be. to J. Bo.

This letter of O. and L. to me, which I herewith send, seems to me of prime importance.2 What they insist upon, and what, if they are to be believed Douglas Kinnaird has joined them in, and undertaken to make Hume and Ellice consent to is-—the changing the words à l'usage to the words à l'ordre du gouvernement Grec. This, if there were no check, would suffice to put the money compleatly in the power of the men at the head of things at the time. But, for remedy what it should seem they have undertaken for is—to give such instructions to Byron &c as shall justify them in case of necessity in not conforming to any such order. If so, perhaps this wording of theirs may be best upon the whole. But, will they do so? who can say? perhaps they will; perhaps they will not. What strikes me then is—that it may be no small security if Byron &c are in possession of this letter of theirs: for, in that case if accused of having betrayed their pg 382trust in not obeying an order given them by the Greek Government of the moment, this, if in their eyes disobedience is necessary, will be a sufficient justification of them on the ground of probity at any rate.

If this strikes you in the same light, you will send to Stanhope this their original letter by Lord Byron's Messenger: in which case, if you can give time enough, it would be highly advisable to have a copy taken—an attested copy. I suppose a copy would, if sent, hardly be so satisfactory as the original. I believe I shall send you along with this the copy of my letter to them3 which I sent you by Richard4 and which you had or had not time to run over. It seems to me that it may afford some useful information to Stanhope or Byron as to the state of minds; and, if you think so too, add it to the rest. No: I shall not now send it: for it is at Blaquiere's, to instruct him towards the reconciliation which he thinks he has promoted.5 But perhaps I may send it to you tomorrow morning with the rest of the things for Stanhope.

All the eulogiums (you will see) are for Hume and Ellice who deserve not, I will be bound for them, either of them, a tenth part of what you do: and that at present you are in sad disgrace. But, when all is concluded, I make no doubt of making them see what regards you in its proper light.

Remains the query—whether Hume and Ellice will be satisfied with the arrangement with which Douglas Kinnaird has undertaken to O. and L. to make them satisfied? I should think they might be without impropriety; and if you think so too, you will let Hume know as much.

If O. and L. are sincere, there will be no harm done by sending this security: and if they are insincere, and. send no document at all to the effect in question, or an inadequate one, the good of this is obvious.

With regard to the clause about the law charges, Mill is entirely of opinion with me, but for any attestation which it may be deemed expedient to propose, time presses not; we can settle it when we meet.

I send you all the pièces du procès I can muster.6 There was an unfortunate misdelivering of a letter of theirs:7 tho' dated 10 o'clock which with my blind eyes I did not see, that letter of theirs, in which they press the matter upon me again before they had received my answers to their proposed minute, was not brought to me till between 5 and 6: at which time my answer8 had been with them long enough for them to have read and answered it. Thence came that letter of mine copy of which you will see, in writing which I concluded that passion had prevented their pg 383paying any regard to it.9 On receiving this morning their last letter,10 I sent by their messenger an answer expressing my satisfaction at the prospect it attested and explaining what I have just mentioned.11 I kept no copy. I could not afford the time.

P.S. 39 Minutes after 11. If you send back the inclosed by my messenger tomorrow morning it will be soon enough.

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Editor’s Note
3069. 1 London Greek Committee Papers, National Library of Greece, Athens, vol. vi, fo. F2. Autograph. Of the seven letters Bentham proposed to send to Bowring, only a copy of Letter 3066 in the hand of Colls is filed in the London Greek Committee Papers with this letter.
Editor’s Note
4 i.e. Doane.
Editor’s Note
5 See Letter 3065.
Editor’s Note
6 Apart from letters mentioned above and below, Bentham also sent Letter 3062 from Blaquiere, according to his endorsement on that letter.
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