Hamish Riley-Smith

Rare Books And Manuscripts

James Mill

Autograph letter signed to Josiah Conder. 1816

On the abuse of power

Autograph letter signed to Josiah Conder.
Ford Abbey, August 9 1816

Quarto, 25.0 x 19.8 cm, 2 pages in ink, with some deletions and insertions in the text, integral leaf removed leaving a somewhat irregular margin, docketed at head of first page,.
£6,000

An important unpublished letter about the abuse of power by government, that such power is destructive and that when it happens it should be taken away. It was the duty of every man to expose abuses or otherwise they would be deprived of their liberty.
Written to Josiah Conder [1789-1855], bookseller and author, proprietor and editor of the Eclectic Review between 1814-1837, during which he supported the dissenting interest. Mill is said to have written in the British and Monthly reviews and especially the Eclectic. Details of the present controversy may be found in the Eclectic Review 1816
The letter was written from Ford Abbey. “Jeremy Bentham, having rented Ford Abbey, invited Mill and his family to take up their abode with him. The party must have gone there in July...It is not possible to convey by words an adequate representation of the vast pile in its extensive surroundings...” Bain, pp.129-136
James Mill autograph letters are very rare.

James Mill - Autograph letter signed to Josiah Conder. 1816

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