|Content Description||Acknowledges receipt of his letters; hopes Portland has received his of the 2nd [Pw A 1482] which 'will satisfy you what my opinion is about your being one of the commissioners to signe the treaty' [with France re. Spanish succession]; comments that the desire to better the conditions was reasonable, but that this should not discourage proceedings; informs him that 'the nearer that fatall houre approaches of the King of Spain's death, the more I find people amazed and nonplust inexpectation of the confusion, that will ensue',|
Informs him that the queen and the German party are beginning to 'grow odious'; states that Spain is not likely to require assistance, and that few would be willing to give it; says that the mood in England is that the country will not be ready for war for another 3 or 4 years, and that people must be given some rest from taxes; refers to the new parliament, saying it is difficult to determine what its temper will be; comments that in these circumstances it will be good to negotiate.
Speculates about the French attitude towards the Spanish crown, and what their aims might be; informs him that it is rumoured amongst the Jacobites that at the King of Spain's death, 'Holland and England are resolved to sitt still'; refers to Portland's observation that troops should be kept up to ensure France sticks to her agreement; outlines his own opinions on the matter, stating that if an accommodation is reached, people will expect forces to be reduced, rather than increased or maintained as they are; mentions Sir Edward Seymour's argument, namely 'why make a treaty, if you do not trust it'.
States that he has not seen Lady Jennings; refers to the need to send back the warrant [for the appointment of negotiators with France]; speculates that Sir Joseph Williamson is to be appointed one of the commissioners.
The letter is dated '13/23 Septbr 1698'.