Josiah Burchett acted promptly on receiving Halley’s letter of November 28 requesting that the Admiralty formally recommends his ship to Benbow’s protection, and on November 30 Burchett writes to Admiral Benbow with their Lordships’ commands.
The letter is endorsed ‘Returned and Cancelled’ as Benbow’s squadron – and the Paramore – has already sailed.
(Josiah Burchett to Rear-Admiral Benbow, dated 30 November 1698 from the Admiralty Office, National Archives ADM 2/395 pp 487-488)
I have this day recd. a Letter from Captn. halley of the Paramour, whereby he desires, that he may have the Countenance of Your Squadron, soe farr as it shall lye in Your way, to protect him from the Sally Men of Warr, which I have comunicated to my Lords of the Admiralty, and am Comanded to signify their Lordpps. directions to You, that soe farr as Captn. halley’s way and Your’s shall lye together, You doe take care to protect him from any of those Rovers; but herein You are not to impede Your proceeding on the Service You are Ordered: Captn. halley has acquainted me that You have already promised him this Assistance, but as I have already said, ’tis by their Lordpps. Comand I doe recomend it to Your care, & not having opportunity of writing by this Conveyance to Captn. halley, I desire You will acquaint him with the Contents of my Letter, a Duplicate whereof will be sent by to Morrow’s Post to meet You at Plymouth, at which time I will write to him, I heartily wish You a good Voyage & am
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I love reading letters and other writings of the period. Though my agent doesn’t like it overmuch when I use them as an example in my books.
Yes, I can’t resist them, they seem so charming. I was delighted a number of letters relating to Halley’s voyages are extant, especially as those written by him are generally more informative than his log book.