Dear Mr Talbot
I was too ill all yesterday to answer the request contained in a note I received from Lady Elish Feilding <1> desiring to see “the correspondence which I sent to Lord George Cavendish, <2> and my commentaries upon it“,
There were no commentaries whatever addressed by me to Lord George Cavendish, I thought none necessary, as the correspondence speaks for itself. – but I have a high respect for the character of Lord George Cavendish & I chose therefore to secure myself his Lordship’s approbation by laying before him, the facts relating to my conduct, under this extraordinary behaviour that has been directed towards me.
There is not the slightest reason that Lady Elish Feilding should see the correspondence in question as I have shewn it to you that you might be authorised to inform her of what it was proper she & yourself should know, concerning a subject you had heard gutterly mentioned, namely that I had done every possible kindness to Mrs Bligh <3> – positively refusing to take part against Lady Elish Feilding or permit the revival of a past quarrel in my house or authorise the introduction of Lady Elisabeth’s name. –
I should have supposed that Lady Elish would have thought it for her dignity to second this my delicate conduct towards her, – but of that she must judge for herself – As however it is my decided opinion that it is the duty of both these Wives to their husbands, to be intirely silent respecting this past quarrel, I will not lend my sanction to any opposite conduct in either of them – & having already found it necessary to declare to you in peremptory terms more than once, that I will not permit the discussion to be forced into my house in the improper manner that is attempted in so many way. I shall now only add that any farther application that may be made to me upon the subject from any part of your family. I shall consider as such a determined violation of good manners that I shall treat it as if it did not happen, & pay it no attention whatever. trusting however that you will have the good sense to prevent my being thus forcibly & reluctantly compelled to give this unwilling testimony of disrespect – I still remain with sentiments of perfect good will
Yr Sinre & Obate humble Sert
Tuesday 21st Jany
1. Lady Elisabeth Theresa Feilding, née Fox Strangways, first m Talbot (1773–1846), WHFT’s mother.
2. Possibly Lord George Cavendish Bentinck (1802–1848).