143.: ricardo to mill3[Reply to 142.—Answered by 145] - David Ricardo, The Works and Correspondence of David Ricardo, Vol. 6 Letters 1810-1815 
The Works and Correspondence of David Ricardo, ed. Piero Sraffa with the Collaboration of M.H. Dobb (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2005). Vol. 6 Letters 1810-1815.
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First published by Cambridge University Press in 1951. Copyright 1951, 1952, 1955, 1973 by the Royal Economic Society. This edition of The Works and Correspondence of David Ricardo is published by Liberty Fund, Inc., under license from the Royal Economic Society.
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ricardo to mill
[Reply to 142.—Answered by 145]
Gatcomb Park 9th. Decr. 1815
My dear Sir
The trouble which you have taken with my manuscript, in giving a short analysis of each paragraph, and bringing so much at once under view, shews me clearly the great use which may be made of such a method in arranging a difficult subject.
The encouragement you gave me to proceed made me set to work with new energy, and I had become quite reconciled to the sections and their titles, when I observed how materially they contributed to make the subject clear and intelligible. I found great difficulty in recasting a section, or in writing any of the new matter which you recommended, but I proceeded with a determined spirit to overcome by perseverance all these obstacles,—but a new one has arisen in my mind which I think will stop me altogether. In looking over Mr. Perceval’s correspondence with the Bank Directors, I find that in 1808, when the new agreement was made respecting the charges to be allowed to the Bank for management, he appears fairly to acknowledge, that in virtue of their former agreement, the Bank might insist on the rate of charge secured to them, by that agreement, on so much of the debt as remained unredeemed since it was entered into; but as a new bargain might be made with respect to that part of the debt which had been created since, and which was a very large proportion of the whole debt, he had it in his own power to accomplish the object which he had in view, which was to reduce to a certain standard the allowance on the whole debt.
If the Bank were now to insist on their agreement of 1808, the only answer that could be given them, would be that of Mr. Perceval,—viz that a new bargain might be made for that portion of debt which had been created subsequently to 1808, which now however is but a small portion of the whole debt. I doubt indeed whether that answer could now be fairly given, for the agreement in 1808 differs from all former ones,—it provides both for the increase, and the diminution of the debt, and the charge is rated accordingly. It is not my object to cancel any existing engagement, but to regulate equitably for the public those which are about to be renewed. I might therefore as well propose to alter the terms of their Charter, as the terms of this agreement.
The same objection does not lie against the compensation for public deposits, that must come before Parliament before April next; but on this subject Mr. Vansittart appears to hold opinions which I think correct, and will it be desirable for me to create a host of enemies without atchieving the least good. No one holds such enmity more cheap than I do, it is so little justifiable in such a cause that I quite disregard it. I would therefore persevere if I thought I was doing myself credit, but really there appears no object for which to contend.
You will not yet have quitted Ford Abbey, and if the weather is as fine with you as it is with us, you may possibly prolong your stay,—I am not sure that I shall not be in London before you, but it will be for one night only. I am in hopes however that my journey may not be necessary. And now before I conclude let me assure you that I am very sensible of and very grateful for the very great trouble which you have had with my manuscript; it was very kind of you indeed to give me such very kind assistance. I have experienced it before, and you will encourage me to look for it again, so far it is bad policy in you, but yours is not a self regarding self-love. My best wishes to Mrs. Mill
Yrs. very truly