Item 192 - Letter from Charles Babbage

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Add. MS a/200/192


Letter from Charles Babbage


  • 15 May 1820 (Creation)

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3 pp.

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Devonshire Rd, Portland Place - Babbage received WW's thirty guineas and has paid 31 for his fees at the Royal Society. Three members of the Astronomical Society have donated 100 guineas toward the Cambridge Observatory (50 came from William Pearson). 'Sir J. B [Joseph Banks] is about to resign and has recommended Davies Gilbert. But all sorts of plans speculations and schemes are afloat, and all sorts of people proper and improper are penetrated with the desire of wielding the sceptre of science. Whether this elective throne shall be filled by a philosopher or peer a priest or prince is a problem pendent on the fortuitous course of events. The Society is in a position of unstable equilibrium or rather it is like a comet which has not made up its mind whether it shall soberly circulate round the light of truth or traverse boundless space through endless time frying and damning the predestined infidels of other systems until some starry giant shall fascinate to its destruction this erring ball which has "run a muck" through creation'.

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