Dec. 29th. 1856
I beg to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the day before yesterday.
As I have already informed you that the Trustees wished, before complying with you request, to remove any misunderstanding that might exist on the subject between you & Sir H. Rawlinson.
I have communicated to Sir Henry the correspondence which has taken place between you & me, in the presence of Mr. Norris, who informed Sir Henry that he had heard from you respecting this business. Sir H. Rawlinson promised to write to me, and I was in hopes that his letter would remove any difficulty in the way of communicating to you the copy that you asked of certain lithographed Assyrian inscriptions. I have however received no letter, as I expected, and I am told that Sir H. Rawlinson said to one of the person employed here, about a week ago, that he would not be here for some time. <1>
Under these circumstances it is for you to decide whether you still wish to withdraw the request you made to have a copy of the above mentioned inscriptions. I beg particularly to point out to you that it is not owing to any objection on the part of the “Museum authorities” that your request is not yet complied with. I remain
Sir Faithfully Yours
H.F. Talbot Esq
1. In fact, Rawlinson had written a response dated 22 December; there is no evidence of when it was posted, but it was marked received at the British Museum on 30 December, the day after Panizzi wrote this letter and, of course, immediately before the end of the year holiday. Rawlinson wrote: "I have nothing whatever to say to the Photographs- Mr Fox Talbot is welcome to all of them- I merely object to his being supplied with my Lithographs. (a right to which I may truly say I have earned by the sweat of my brow) in anticipation of their publication - unless by the bye Mr Talbot will persuade the Trustees not to publish his readings and translations of the said Inscriptions, before the original texts are given to the world- I leave town tomorrow for a few days but shall be at the Museum again on Saturday or Monday, when I will call in and explain particulars." British Museum Archives, London.