Left: James Currie. Right: a portrait of Burns by Archibald Skirving, published in The Works of Robert Burns, by Blackie and Son, Glasgow, 1854.
Date : 18-11-1799
Correspondent : James CurrieCorrespondent Location : Liverpool
Recipient : Cadell & Davies Recipient Location : London
Subject : Currie writes to the publishers reporting slow progress of the edition.

Dear Sirs
      I received your obliging intimation as to the Widow of poor Burns, on which subject, I will consult the Trustees, I write to you again — We are going to affix to each title-page some little vignettes cut in wood, which will look handsome, and be of small expence — The last volume does not advance so fast as it ought to do, but is however drawing towards a Conclusion.
      My friend Jones has on hand 4 Copies of Chambers’ dictionary one of which it appears I promised in the names of the Committee of the Athenaeum he would take — By some accident, in the midst of my engagements, I forgot to notice it to Dr Rutter, & it went in the list to you – As Jones is pinched at present (these are sad times in Liverpool) he is disappointed not to have disposed of his Copy — Should it happen that you could without inconvenience relinquish this work to him I should esteem myself much obliged — But I will not request this if it involves you in any inconvenience – We shall forward you orders for a thousand pounds ↑worth↓ more as soon as we can select the books from the Catalogues. What you have already sent gives great satisfaction.
      I am wh. much
      Regard Gentlm
           Yr. faithful [?St.]
                Ja Currie

Liverpool 18 Nov 99

Notes :

Jones: John Jones, Liverpool bookbinder

Athenaeum: Athenaeum: originally, the temple of Athene, then the name of college of higher education founded by the Emperor Hadrian, c.133; revived as name for literary institutions. Liverpool Athenaeum developed from activities of Liverpool Literary Society; plans drawn up, 1797, and premises opened in Church St., 1799. Funded by subscription, it had Currie and Roscoe as founder members. Currie alludes to it in his letter to Cadell & Davies, 27 June 1799.

Dr Rutter: John Rutter, Liverpool physician, friend and colleague of Currie’s and likewise a graduate of the University of Edinburgh.

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