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The Life of William Roscoe
Chapter XII. 1811-1812
William Roscoe to John M’Creery, [September? 1812]

Vol I. Contents
Chapter I. 1753-1781
Chapter II. 1781-1787
Chapter III. 1787-1792
Chapter IV. 1788-1796
Chapter V. 1795
Chapter VI. 1796-1799
Chapter VII. 1799-1805
Chapter IX. 1806-1807
Chapter X. 1808
Chapter XI. 1809-1810
Vol II. Contents
Chapter XII. 1811-1812
Chapter XIII. 1812-1815
Chapter XIV. 1816
Chapter XV. 1817-1818
Chapter XVI. 1819
Chapter XVII. 1820-1823
Chapter XVIII. 1824
Chapter XIX. 1825-1827
Chapter XX. 1827-1831
Chapter XXI.
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“Your letter of the 24th, desiring to be informed, whether, if I were chosen for Westminster, upon the pure principles of the last election, I would undertake the duties of the office, has greatly surprised me.

“That my name should be in any manner suggested as connected with the representation of the first city in the empire, is in itself an honour of which I cannot but be most deeply sensible. At the same time, I am compelled to
say, that if the result were as certain as the object is elevated, I must most seriously decline it, and to your question so distinctly put must answer, No. The truth is, that if a Parliamentary life were in my view, I should think myself bound, in the first instance, to renew the offer of my services to my native place, where, if I have not the certainty, I might now have the fairest prospect of success. The same reasons that have induced me to decline the solicitations of my friends here, must operate equally at least as to any other place, however more distinguished, with the additional consideration, that after the decided step I have already taken here, I could not accede to any other prospect without subjecting myself to a charge of inconsistency, which it has ever been my endeavour to avoid.

“This inquiry, however it may have originated, or to whatever number of electors it may be confined, will always be recollected by me with the highest gratification. Not, I trust, from any weak motives of personal vanity, but because it affords me the happiness of thinking that the principles I have avowed in favour of liberty, peace, and reform, are in strict unison with those of the enlightened electors of Westminster. Nor can I entertain a doubt that they will persevere in the cause they have already so nobly begun, and by maintaining the independence and purity of election, become the saviours of their country.


“I have now only to thank you, my dear friend, for the solicitude you so kindly express as to my decision, and to assure you of my invariable attachment.”