[Lord Mansfield, Scottish jurist whose judgments reformed English law on slavery.] Autograph Letter Signed ('Mansfield') [to the Earl of Liverpool] regarding his recovery from ill health and recuperation at Mount Ephraim.

Author: 
Lord Mansfield [William Murray, 1st Earl of Mansfield (1705-1793)], distinguished Scottish jurist whose judgments reformed English law on slavery [Charles Jenkinson, 1st Earl of Liverpool (1729-1808)]
Publication details: 
'Mount Ephraim [near Tunbridge Wells, Kent] 2d Septr. 1784'.
£300.00
SKU: 21754

1p, 8vo. In good condition, lightly aged, with thin strip of paper from mount adhering to blank reverse. Folded once.. A neatly-written letter of fourteen lines. The recipient is not named, but is Charles Jenkinson, 1st Earl of Liverpool (1729-1808), whose country seat was Addiscombe Park in Surrey. Mansfield served in the First Pitt Ministry with Liverpool (then Lord Hawkesbury), the former as Lord President of the Council, and the latter as President of the Board of Trade. The letter begins: 'My dear Sir | Nothing can give me more Pleasure, than the many Instances you have given me of your kind Attention & Friendship since my Shock & Illness. I fully purposed making an Effort to find you at Addescombe Place to thank you. & hope I shall be able to contrive so as to enjoy that Happiness. I certainly am much better, I am in Spirits, chearful in Company, &, which is a main Thing, I have recovered my Sleep. The Series of very bad Weather which We have had, has not thrown me back.' He finds it 'inconvenient' to stay at Mount Ephraim, 'but the Dr presses me exceedingly to continue, to compleat my cure, especially as the Sun has returned to Us'. As a consequence he cannot 'say any thing yet of my Motion, only that Wherever I go, or stay, I am with the strongest Attachment | Your most aff: hu: Servt. | Mansfield'. From the distinguished autograph collection of the psychiatrist Richard Alfred Hunter (1923-1981), whose collection of 7000 works relating to psychiatry is now in Cambridge University Library. Hunter and his mother Ida Macalpine had a particular interest in the illness of King George III, and their book 'George III and the Mad Business' (1969) suggested the diagnosis of porphyria popularised by Alan Bennett in his play 'The Madness of George III'.