William Hone to Samuel Shepherd (Attorney General)

[1780-1818] - [1818-1824] - [1825-1832] - [1832-1842] - Hone Correspondence

William Hone to Samuel Shepherd (Attorney General), 23 November, 1817.1-TEI-


Last night I was served with Rules for nominating Juries and notices of Trial for the Sittings after Term on the three Informations filed against me for the Parodies.

I confess I was much surprised at this because after the waiver of the Juries and my liberation on my own Recognizance, I did not expect further proceedings. It has occurred to me that these measures, in the multiplicity of business, may have escaped your notice—for I can scarcely imagine that I should continue to attract the attention of a public officer on account of Publications of which I have not sold a single copy within the last nine months.

As it would be extreme hardihood in me, with a very large Family and wholly inadequate means, to court a contest with the purse and power of the Crown, so I should feel no less pleasure in being indebted to your liberality for putting an end to the Prosecutions—in that case I pledge myself not to reissue the Publications, and indeed the entire quantity in my possession may be disposed of as you direct.

I might enhance on my having suspended their sale nearly three months before the Informations were filed—on my never having resumed it—on my two months' confinement in the King's Bench Prison—on consequent estrangement of connexion, and domestic suffering during that period.

I forbear to say more than that the appointment of the Master of the Crown Office to nominate the Juries is for the day after tomorrow (Tuesday)—I am already indebted to you for the politeness of something more than a mere acknowledgment of a former communication, and I persuade myself that I may be obliged by a line, in the course of Tomorrow, (Monday) which favour, in my unexpected, unadvised, and wholly unprepared situation, I take the liberty of soliciting, and anxiously await.

Delivered to me by Mr Atty Genl 24th Novr. Wrote to Mr Hone thereon same day.2

PRO TS/11/44, book 164, ff. 95b-97a. [return]
This hurried note, apparently in the hand of one of Shepherd's clerks, is on the overleaf, f. 97a, where one might expect to see an address. Incidentally, the British Library holds a draft of this letter at Add. MS 40120, f. 73. [return]
William Hone. Date: 2014-03-12