Corsham House <1>
March 22 1831
Many thanks for your kind promise of support when “Time serves” At present I am out of the question.
I only know if I could stand for Chippenham myself, the County being out of the question, I would do so. “How happy could I be with either” but one is as impossible, I found, as the other while I represent Majesty <4> itself.
In short I think the chance fair, but you must not lose one moment in leaving London on the receipt of this. Of course as Sheriff I can do nothing openly and this Letter is strictly confidential. Any thing I can do for you in decent secrecy is perfectly at your service on the reciprocal terms of your entire concealment of my exerting myself beyond what I ought to do as Sheriff.
If a Sheriff has a right to do any thing in a Borough Election I shall be most happy to do it for you. I really do not know how this is and only wish to guard myself against the appearance of promising more than I am at liberty to perform
Excuse haste and Believe me Dear Talbot always very truly yrs
Henry. Fox. Talbot Esqre
31 Sackville St
1. Corsham Court, Wiltshire, 3 mi NW of Lacock: seat of Ld Methuen.
2. Chippenham, Wiltshire: largest town near Lacock, 3 miles N.
3. A misspelling for Joseph Neeld (1789–1856), MP & botanist.
4. William IV (1765–1837), King of England (1830–1837).
5. A misspelling for Rear Admiral Charles Feilding (1780–1837), Royal Navy; WHFT’s step-father; possibly Thomas Moore (1780–1852), Irish poet.
6. George Julius Duncombe Poulett Scrope (1797–1876), MP & scientist.