285 Thomas Hollis to John Leverett

    London, September 28, 1723

    Mr. John Leverett

    Reverend Sir

    I have lately written several letters to you and others of your corporation, and have since that received your packet by Mr. Allen with a letter dated July 8 from your self, and was unwilling to omitt answering it by Capt. Cary, who is now going and I supose the last ship for this Winter. I did hope ere now to have received Mr. Tresurers account as also some recomendation from you about my Exhibitions in the College, ere I returned your draft of a College obligation to me, but for this reason I resolved to send it you herewith to be engrossed and sealed and returned in the Spring to me. You will see I alter little but desire the Ballance of July accounts, all being deducted and paid to that time may be specified in one Summe, the produce of which is to go annually to discharg my grants. I would have you word it to make your selves easy. I design no alterations to my Orders while you keep to them, though I have reserved to my self that Power, and under your present quarrells, it is rather favorable then otherwise to your College that I have so if I see it needfull. I the less wonder to find some of you so diffident of me as to scruple coming into such an obligation to bind your selves and successors in this manner, while I find so many of you suspitious of one another. A Citty divided against it self can’t stand, where Love and mutual confidence, the cement of Society, is once wanting, one striving to undermine another, whether for Interest or Honour it is easy to guess what must be the ishue.

    I note your observations on the Overseers refusing the Professor from being of the Corporation, and I think them just. I have my self in some late letters made remarks to them to the same purpose, and wait the success, perhaps their after thoughts may be wiser.

    I have shewn the two drafts you sent me for a new charter66 for the College, to the Reverend Mr. Daniel Neale, who naturally cares for your welfare. I know not any among us like minded, and we have both read them over, and aprove of your new draft very well, but alass it is not yet the time to think of obtaining that favour, your country men seem not as yet sensible of the Dangers you are exposed unto. I have therefore lodged them both in Mr D. Neals hand to be forth coming on a proper occasion. You will do well to consult your Lewtennant Governour about it, presently on receipt hereof (I doubt not his Exellency your Governour, as also your Agent Mr. Dummer have now both writ to him how things stand at present before the Lords the Regents). Pray him to inform your Agent at London what your desires are, and I think you will do well to write to your Governour your selves, and make your Petition to him directly. I am perswaded you may depend upon his Goodnes to do what he can to serve you Honestly that so when the matters come properly before the King, whether it shall be resolved on to make a New Charter, or a New Governour for your Countries, or make some additional articles to the Charter you now have, this affaire of your College may come in for One, and may be managed in a kind manner for you. But as this affaire at Court will require attendance, a good Solicitour and large Fees (which Mr. Neale or Mr. Hollis are not fitt for) you must have some one that has Patience to waite and attend with due Sollicitations, and a deep purse of yellow Oile to promote and farther what you desire to have done.

    I think your Corporation ought to have, from among your selves a man of Prudence, duely impowered, well instructed in your affairs early in the Spring at London, who shall make it his busines to attend on this matter, and consult with your Governour about it on the Spott, and act in concert with him. Its my opinion this might be of service to your College, and gett what you can, though not all you would have. And as the Overseers observe you have moneys in cash, lay some of it out this way for a future good to your house, and waite a litter time to raise your Officers Sallarys, when you may more securely spare it. But as to these things I onely hint my thoughts as one who seeks your welfare, and would not hide from you, at this distance what I conceive might be profitable for you. I direct nothing, agree among your selvs and act, I would have no share in your Party Divisions, nor shall I cease to pray to God to direct your Societys for the best, and that he would please yet to continue you Sir as hitherto, so for a long time to come a blessing to that Nursery of Learning, where you now Preside with so much reputation.

    I send here with Whistons new Theory of the Earth,67 to sett by Burnetts formerly sent. They are both learned and ingenuous in their thoughts though I cant aprove of either. Yet I think them fitt to place in your College library.

    I shall be glad not to have occasion to trouble you with long Epistles hereafter, writing becomes more uneasie to my sight.

    My love and service to you and yours and them that seek the things that make Peace with Truth and Love it.

    Your most humble Servant

    Thomas Hollis

    Hollis-Leverett mss, Houghton Library.