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275.: To SIR JOSEPH BANKS - 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 SIR JOSEPH BANKS1
MS., University of Illinois Libr.; Rae 413; Fay, The World of Adam Smith (1960), 19 n. (extract).
Edinburgh, 18 Dec. 178
The great politeness and attention with which you was so good as to honour me when I was last in London, has emboldened me to use a freedom which, I am afraid, I am not intitled to, and to introduce to your acquaintance a young Gentleman of very great merit and who is very ambitious of being known to you. Mr Leslie,2 the bearer of this letter, has been known to me for several years past. He has a very particular and happy turn for the mathematical Sciences. It is now more than two years ago that he undertook the instruction of a young Gentleman, my nearest relation, in some of the higher parts of those sciences and acquitted himself most perfectly both to my satisfaction and to that of the young Gentleman. I think myself upon this account under particular obligations to him. He proposes to pursue the same line in London and would be glad to accept of employment in some of the mathematical academies. Besides his knowledge in Mathematics, he is, I am assured, a tolerable Botanist and Chymist. Your countenance and good opinion, provided you shall find he deserves them, may be of the highest importance to him. Give me leave, upon that condition, to recommend him in the most anxious and earnest manner to your Protection. I have the honour to be, with the highest respect and regard
Sir Your most obliged and most obedient humble Servant
[1 ]Sir Joseph Banks (1743–1820) of Revesby Abbey, Lincs.; studied botany at Oxford; F.R.S. 1766; with Linnaeus’s pupil Daniel Karl Solander, accompanied Cook on the first voyage of southern high latitude exploration in the Endeavour, 1768–71; intended to join Cook for the second voyage in the Resolution, but made impossible demands about authority and facilities and was left behind; visited Iceland with Solander 1772; President of the Royal Society 1778–d.; cr. Baronet 1781; Privy Councillor 1797; his library and collections are in the BM.
[2 ]Sir John Leslie (1766–1832), mathematician and natural philosopher; educ. St Andrews and Edinburgh; tutor to Smith’s heir David Douglas 1785–7, and then to the Wedgwoods 1790–2; Professor of Mathematics at Edinburgh 1805, and of Natural Philosophy 1819; among his scientific achievements was that of artificial freezing; Knighted 1832.