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101.: To LORD SHELBURNE - Adam Smith, Glasgow Edition of the Works and Correspondence Vol. 6 Correspondence of Adam Smith 
Correspondence of Adam Smith, ed. E. C. Mossner and I. S. Ross, vol. VI of the Glasgow Edition of the Works and Correspondence of Adam Smith (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 1987).
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To LORD SHELBURNE
MS., Bowood Libr., Marquess of Lansdowne; Rae 235–6.
[London,] Thursday 12 Feb. 1767
I send you enclosed Quiros’s memorial presented to Philip the second after his return from his voyage, translated from the Spanish in which it is published in Purches.1 The Voyage itself is long, obscure, and difficult to be understood except by those who are particularly acquainted with the geography and navigation of those countries; and upon looking over a great number of Dalrymples papers2 I imagined this was what you would like best to see. He is besides just finishing a Geographical account of all the discoveries that have yet been made in the South seas from the west coast of America to Tasmans discoveries.3 If your Lordship will give him leave he would be glad to read this to you himself and shew you on his map the geographical ascertainment of the situation of each island. I have seen it; it is extremely short; not much longer than this memorial of Quiros. Whether this may be convenient for your Lordship I know not. Whether this continent exists or not may perhaps be uncertain; but supposing it does exist, I am very certain you never will find a man fitter for discovering it, or more determined to hazard everything in order to discover it.4 The terms that he would ask are first, the Absolute command of the Ship with the naming of all the officers in order that he may have people who both have confidence in him and in whom he has confidence: and secondly that, in case he should lose his ship by the common course of accidents before he gets into the South Sea, that the Government will undertake to give him another. These are all the terms he would insist upon. The ship properest for such an expedition, he says, would be an old fifty gun ship without her Guns. He does not, however, insist upon this, as, a sine quâ non, but will go in any ship from an hundred to a thousand tons. He wishes to have but one ship with a good many boats. Most expeditions of this kind, he says, have miscarried from one ships being obliged to wait for the other, or losing time in looking out for the other.
Within these two days I have looked over every thing I can find relating to the Roman Colonys.5 I have not found any thing of much consequence. They were governed upon the model of the Republic: had two consuls called duumviri; a Senate called decuriones or collegium decurionum and other magistrats similar to those of the Republic: The colonists lost their right of voting or of being elected to any magistry in the Roman comitia. In this respect they were inferior to many municipia. They retained, however, all the other privileges of Roman citizens. They seem to have been very independent. Of thirty colonies of whom the Romans demanded troops in the second carthagenian war twelve refused to obey. They frequently rebelled and joined the enemies of the Republic. Being in some measure little independent republics they naturally followed the interests which their peculiar Situation pointed out to them. I have the honour to be with the highest regard My Lord
Your Lordships most obedient humble Servant
[1 ]Pedro Fernández de Quirós (d. 1615), Portuguese visionary and sailor; pilot on the expedition of Mendaña to the Solomons, 1595–6; led search for the unknown continent in the South Seas and discovered the New Hebrides, 1605–7, which he called La Austrialia del Espíritu Santo in honour of Philip III of Spain, scion of the house of Austria. He addressed over seventy memorials to Philip on his return, the 8th (Xa he dicho) was printed in Purchas His Pilgrimes (London, 1624–6), the great collection of voyages published in 5 vols. by the Revd. Samuel Purchas (1577–1628). One narrative of the 1605–6 expedition (Archivo del Museo Naval, Madrid, MS. 951) was edited about 1758, probably by Don Bernardo de Iriarte. A transcription of the Simancas original of the report by Luis Vaz de Torres was sent to Dalrymple (see below) by Juan Bautista Muñoz, translated into English and printed by Rear–Admiral James Burney, who had accompanied Captain Cook in his Voyages, in A Chronological History of Discoveries in the Pacific (1806); see La Austrialia del Espiritu Santo ed. Celsus Kelly, 2 vols. (Cambridge, 1966); also Colin Jack–Hinton, The Search for the Islands of Solomon, 1567–1838 (Oxford, 1969).
[2 ]Alexander Dalrymple (1737–1808), younger bro. of Lord Hailes, hydrographer; served in the East India Co., charted the northern part of the Bay of Bengal; in the Admiralty’s service, 1795, and died broken–hearted on his dismissal, 1808. He published An Historical Collection of the Several Voyages and Discoveries in the South Pacific Ocean (1769) and An Account of the Discoveries Made in the South Pacific Ocean, Previous to 1764 (1767).
[3 ]Abel Janszoon Tasman (? 1603–59), great Dutch navigator; his trading and exploratory voyages for the Dutch East India Co., 1632–53, yielded knowledge of the Pacific, Philippines, Formosa, and Japan; in 1642–3 he discovered Tasmania and New Zealand and circumnavigated Australia; his voyage of 1644 clarified the relationship between New Guinea, Tasmania, and the known parts of Australia.
[4 ]As Secretary of State, Shelburne had an interest in the debate over the command of the expedition to chart the transit of Venus. Lord Hawke appointed Cook who sailed in the Endeavour, 1768–71, to carry out the astronomical work and explore the coasts of New Zealand and eastern Australia. Cook’s expedition of 1772–5 in the Resolution disproved the contention of Dalrymple and others about the existence of a great southern continent.
[5 ]Roman colonies were usually governed by a commission of three elected by the people; Smith discussed Roman colonies in WN, IV.vii.a.3.