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Jeremy Bentham

The Collected Works of Jeremy Bentham: The Correspondence of Jeremy Bentham, Vol. 8: January 1809 to December 1816

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Editor’s NoteEditor’s Note2112To George Holford4 April 1811 (Aet 63)MS. Minutes p. 28.

4. April 1811.


—(Written upon my Examinations being brought to me for revisal.) What follows was not stated by me at the time of my examination. But being to several Members of the Committee then present known to be true, and being in my view of the matter material I should suppose for giving admission to it no such formality as a fresh examination would be deemed necessary.

The place for the insertion of it might be, I suppose, the commencement of p. 28. of the MS. Minutes.

                                            Jeremy Bentham

The construction of the intended building being such as rendered it in a peculiar degree difficult to form any adequate conception of it from graphical representations, models representing it in various points of view occupied for several years a room in my House. It waspg 129 in the view of these models or most of them that the then First Lord of the Treasury and the Secretary grounded their acceptance, as stated in my Examination before the Finance Committee of 1797–8.

Long before the drawing up of the Draught of Contract these models had been, amongst other persons viewed by Members of both Houses, to the number (I suppose) of some scores: amongst the rest by a considerable proportion (I remember) of the present Committee.

At the same time a Book intituled Panopticon etc which gives ample details concerning the essential parts of the plan, together with no less ample reasons for every thing that was proposed to be done, as well in respect of plan of management as in respect of plan of construction, and which has in part been published in Ireland, under the direction of Government there,2 was put into several hands. A copy of it is in the hands of the Committee.

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Editor’s Note
2112. 1 BL VIII. 504–5. Autograph draft. Docketed: '1811 Apr 4 / Panopt. No. 3 / J.B. Q.S.P. / to /G. Holford Chair- / man of the Penitenty /Committee, through /Beeby Clerk of the Jour- /nal Office etc as per /Nos 1 and 2. /Proposed Addition 3 / (not numbered?) viz to / MS. Minutes p. 28 / respecing models of / Panopticon / Brouillon.' Bentham's letters '1 and 2' are the letters to Holford published in. the First Report of the Penitentiary Committee, letters 2106 and 2110 above.
Editor’s Note
2 Panopticon; or, the Inspection-House, was published at Dublin and London in 1791. For Bentham's contact with Sir John Parnell and Major Robert Hobart (subsequently 4th Earl of Buckinghamshire), the Irish chief secretary, see Correspondence, iv, as index.
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