30 August 2013

A Matter of Great Regret

Letter to a publisher in response to the rejection of a manuscript

To John Murray,

29 July 1824

My Dear Sir,

Until I received your note this morning I had flattered myself that my indiscretion had been forgotten.

It is to me a matter of great regret that, as appears by your letter, any more trouble should be given respecting this unfortunate MS., which will, most probably, be considered too crude a production for the public, and which, if it is even imagined to possess any interest, is certainly too late for this Season, and will be obsolete in the next.

I think, therefore, that the sooner it be put behind the fire the better, and as you have some small experience in burning MSS., you will perhaps be so kind as to consign it to the flames.

Once more apologising for all the trouble I have given you, I remain ever, my dear Sir,

Yours very faithfully,

B. Disraeli

Benjamin Disraeli; Letter to John Murray; The Oxford Book of Letters

Painting: Gerard ter Borch, Dutch Master (1617 – 1681)

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