The Hartlib Papers

Title:Copy Letter In Hartlib'S Hand, John Dury? To Worsley?
Dating:17 August 1649

Sir by your last you haue a little opened my eyes further then j was able to conceave of your Virginia busines at first, and for your encouragement j belieue that the Parliament by the Counsel of State will bee moued for their owne interest to alter the Goverment and take vpon them the protection of those that will acknowledge their Authority. and to effect an inclination in all the Plantations to depend vpon this State, the Letters are written and are to bee sent vnto them all with the first occasion. But altho this Interest of State is laid to heart in general, yet j doubt that insight in the busines which you haue, will not bee without your presence here made effectual to giue them a powerful impression. For tho j can conceive fully the Equity of your Proposals, the feasablnes of the worke, and the advantages which may thence redound vnto this State and those that shall bee imploied to settle the affaires of that Plantation, yet wither j nor Mr [A.?] can make it our Worke to sollicit the Worke I shal take some time to discourse with Mr [F? MS torn] and with the President of it [more?] fully to prepare them against your arrival, [but as? MS torn] in my former j haue intimated, nothing will bee done by the Counsel of State except some Proposition bee offred vnto them in writing, and that none can doe it but yourself knowing those who will vpon the settlement of the Goverment engage. I think it is prudencie in the Adventurers not to engage or offer themselves to bee engaged to the state here till they see the way of Settlement, which may bee advantagious and satisfactory. But perhaps the State here will also bee so warie as not to vndertake any thing to any great purpose till they can see how the busines may bee carried on to some good effect: therfore altho j shal not now moue you to get Adventurers engaged, [et?] subscriptions made which should bee tendred to the State as an inducement to doe that which is desired, yet j shal stil moue that something should bee offred in writing to the Counsel of State as a Proposition to bee taken into consideration by them, and to make this Proposition, that you should come over with sufficient instructions, and such promises as you may confide in; that when things are brought about here according to your desires the Worke will bee carried on by those who are interessed, and wil further bee interessed in that Plantation. The busines is not made knowne to many for none but the speaker the President and Mr F. are acquainted with it. You shal bee able when you come to manage it with as few as you shal thinke good, till it bee ripe for the H. ratification, and then it must needs become to the knowledge of all. If you should think fit to send from thence

a Proposition to bee offred to the Counsel of State before your arrival perhaps it might set them a worke to think vpon it, but none being here, that can satisfie all the scruples, which may fall into their thoughts, no resolution will follow therupon: and if the settlement of the Goverment should bee such as may giue satisfaction, and become a ground to men to adventure there must bee some choice of Persons had to whom the care of over-seeing the Goverment is to bee intrusted. I meane the Persons who are to bee the Comittee must bee chosen such, as may encourage men to trade that Way, and that vnderstand the mysterie of the negotiation. Now to find such and to posesse them, whom you would confide yourself in with the Considerations, which may enduce them to vndertake the Worke, will bee a peculiar Worke for you to intend, nor can any of [vs? MS torn] here bee able to goe about it.
    In a Word. altho we haue represented the busines somwhat otherwise then you offered to vs, yet there is nothing done in it to the disadvantage of your Aime but if a Propositon be mad to the Counsel of State here, there is no doubt but the matter will be taken into consideration, but there must be some body to prosecute it to a ful period.
     This j write in haste not hauing had time to speake to Mr Avery nor doe I thinke it needful because he is enclined somewhat to scruple matters too fearfully sometimes at the first sight.
            L. 17 Aug. 49./