Title:
PP/GC/LE/75 Letter from Sir G.C.Lewis to Henry John Temple, third Viscount Palmerston, regarding the appointment of the National Gallery Commission, the resiting of government departments, and the appointment of staff to the Treasury, 26 August 1856
Date:
26/08/1856
Content:
Letter from Sir George Cornewall Lewis, second Baronet, [Chancellor of the Exchequer], Harpton [Court, Radnorshire], to Henry John Temple, third Viscount Palmerston: he has written to Lord Northampton to ask if he will serve on the National Gallery Commission. If he accepts, Lewis will apply to Watson Gordon, Ford, Westmacott and Faraday. "We must rely on the arguments rather than the authority of the Commission for producing public conviction." Lewis would be well satisfied if the War Department were accommodated in Pall Mall, but the committee have to recommend the centralization of the public departments. He will seek Panmure's opinion. "My fear is that by attempting too much with respect to public offices, we may end in accomplishing nothing." Whately in his LOGIC states that men reason about their expenditure in the following terms. "They say, I can afford this, or that, or the other expense. Persons no richer than I am afford them. They proceed to review all these expenses together, and they ruin themselves. We must take care not to fall into a similar fallacy with respect to public expenses." He encloses a memorandum in reference to Lord Kinnaird's letter, which Arbuthnot has drawn up at Lewis's request. He discussed the rearrangement of clerks in the Treasury with Wilson, Arbuthnot and Stephenson, as well as with Trevelyan, and is satisfied that the selection was dictated by public considerations, and not any personal or private feeling. He has agreed "somewhat reluctantly" to the arrangement. If there has been any error, it has been exclusively an error of judgement. "I was afraid that Fitzgerald was a nervous timid man, incapable of presiding over a department." He saw with much regret the account of Sir W.Temple's death and offers his sympathy at the severe loss Palmerston has sustained. "I had heard of his serious illness, but I was not at all aware that his malady was so near a fatal termination." 26 Aug 1856
Extent:
Two papers
License:
All images are copyright. Please contact Archives@soton.ac.uk if you wish to reproduce this material
Subject:
Charles Douglas-Compton, forth Marquis of Northampton, trustee of the National Gallery
Sir James Watson Gordon, portrait painter
Richard Ford, critic, author and art collector
Sir Richard Westmacott, sculptor
Professor Michael Faraday, natural philosopher, President of the Royal Institution
Fox Maule, second Baron Panmure, later eleventh Earl Dalhousie, Secretary at War
Richard Whately, Archbishop of Dublin, author of LOGIC (1826)
Charles Kinnaird, eighth Baron Kinnaird
George Arbuthnot, auditor of the civil list #adate=26/08/1856
James Wilson, financial secretary
William Stephenson, principal clerk at the Treasury
Sir Charles Trevelyan, assistant secretary to the Treasury
?Frederick Fitzgerald, second class clerk at the Treasury
Sir William Cowper Temple, deceased
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