<74>

It was not a full year after but I was told that he had perfected the Lunar Theory. & Dr. Gregory gave out that there was no need of further Observations; for his Numbers would answer all my Observations within two or three minutes, or lesse. I had covenanted with him to have his emendations first imparted to me, because I imparted to him the observations from which they were derived. but his promise was overlookt or forgot, at last it came to my hands I found the Solar Numbers were the same I had freely given him. & the Lunar but little altered save that he had added a parcell of very small æquations which whether the heavens would bear or not was onely to be found by compareing of his Numbers with good Observations I therefore made New lunar Tables exactly agreeable to his sentiment but when I compared the Moones places calculated from them, with her places deduced from the Observations, I found {illeg} that those Numbers which were said to agree with the Observations within <76> two 3 minutes would very seldome come so neare, but often differed 8. 9. or 10 minutes which I did not admire it then at all being very sensible that the persons who so loudly on all occasions cried up his performances in amending the Lunar Theory & Tables did it to oblige his friendship, who had then a great Interest in a Great Courtier, and considering also that {they} were persons of very ordinary skill in that parte of Mathematicks which is concerned with the heavens & lunar Theorys.

Accordingly a Committy was appointed, who with Mr. Newton waited on the Prince. But, who they were when they wated on him & how they made their recommendation, I was never Informed nor did they vouchsafe to consult me about it or take me along with them. all that I can tell of is that the Estimate was wrote in November 1704 the Prince chosen into the Society November 30, a letter from the Prince's Secretary, Mr. George Clarke directing Mr. Roberts, Sir C. Wren, Dr. Gregory & Dr. Arbuthnot, with Mr. N. to inspect my papers dated Dec. 11, 1704, which they did & somtime after gave in their report of the charge of prepareing & printing the observations & Catalogues mentioned in the Estimate, about 863ld.

< insertion from f 78v >
 ld s d 283 Rheme of paper for 400 copies at 20sh. per Rhem 283 0 0 Composition & press-Worke for 300 sheets at 20sh. per sheet 300 0 0 Charges of an Amanuensis for copying comparing correcting and exammining the papers 100 0 0 to compute the Planets' places, for 2 Calculators 180 0 0 ---- ---- ----- in all 863ld 0 0
< text from p 78 resumes >

But the last particular of the charge (180ld for the two calculators) was not mentioned in it but added in a note under it for what reason those know best who drew it up.

Nor the charge of designeing & engraveing about 50 plates of the Constellations: tho this was likely to be the heaviest parte of the Charge, & the Observations could not be understood without them. I had further proposed them to be the first taken care of & begun. I had them all drawn; & 12 of them anew designed by a skillfull workeman by me. These were the most sumptuous part of the worke and had it not been for them I had had no or little need to crave the Prince's help to print, why they were neglected, Sir Isaac Newton best knows. betwixt March 22 1704-5 & aprill 21, 1705 Mr Newton was knighted by the Queen at Cambridge.

Hereby I was plainly convinced that Sir I.N. was no freind to {my} worke. & every step hee tooke afterwards proved planely that whatever he pretended his designe was either to gaine the honor of all my paines to himselfe, to make me come under him as Dr Arbuthnot some time after expresst it, or to spoyle or sinke it, which it was my chiefe concern & businesse, if possible to prevent. I therefore printed my Estimat & gave it to my friends < insertion from f 78v > that they might see what my workes were & how I thought it best to proceed in printing them.

< text from p 78 resumes >

To skreen himselfe from the just imputions & blame that would probably follow such disingenuous & ungratefull practises he made use of these gentlemen to whom he had got the Inspection of my books of Observations ordered by the Prince, & called <79> them the Prince's Referees. Of these, Sir Ch: Wren was then about 70 yeares of Age & tho he was a skillful person, yet being full of other business he was sure to have him who lived in his neighbourhood, to consent to all his orders, & subscribe them. Mr Roberts was an easy, good natured man but knew little of the businesse. Mr Aston had been fellow of the same Trinity colledge in Cambridge at the same time with him. knew nothing of the businesse, lived in the Court, had been my freind & Guest at the Observatory, was too much a Courtier to withstand any one that had a Noble patrone in the Ministry, and therefore was tooke into the Number of the Referrees sometimes for speciall purposes, Dr Gregory tho he published a peice of Astronomy knew but very little of that part of it that was cultivated here. nor was Dr Arbuthnot skilld in it but being one of the Princes physitians, he was taken in to Sir Isaac Newton's purposes. he saw what was designed & testified to me by some expressions, that he approved not such procedings. promised once to assist me in a particular affaire. and, tho he met with obstructions, performed it handsomly:

With these persons Sir Isaac Newton began to act his parte, & carry on his designes. I dealt honestly & openly with him as will appear by the Copys of some letters I wrote to him upon severall occasions; haveing no other designe but to have my works handsomely printed & as soone as possible for the Prince was very infirm but I soon perceived that he designed onely to hinder the work by delays or spoyle or sinke it. or force me to comply with his humour & flatter him & Cry him up as Dr. Gregory & Dr. Halley did. I was forced therefore to act with more Caution then I had done hitherto that I might give him no cause of pretensions to stop the progresse of the Work

To forward which I used my best diligence & honest endeavours. I hired one & employed him to copy specimens of the severall partes of the Work: 1°. the observations of the fixed stars made with the sextant : 2°. of the Moone made with the same Instrument: 3o. of observations made with the Murall Arch: 4o. of the New Catalogue which I sent him with a list that gave an account of them, dated Jan. 5, 170$\frac{4}{5}$; but could not get them printed of till March 22 following. In the mean time, Sir IN appointed a meeting of his referrees, March 5 following. Mr Churchill was not there but Sir Isack with Dr Arbuthnot, Dr Gregory & Mr Aston dined at Churchills <80> & a forthnight after Mr Aston told me of it (for I dined not with them) & that all things he thought were then agreed but paper. Now I understood that Mr Churchill was to be the undertaker. he had beene recommended for the purpose by one that I tooke to be my freind without my knowledge for I did not conceive wee had any need of one, & so did some of the Gentlemen of the Royal Society: but Sir Isaac Newton was resolved to make friends at my Cost for, as he ordered the matter the Undertaker was here to reap the sole Advantage of all my Labors & great expenses & he was so confident of it, that when I intimated it to him he answered boldly The Prince would reward me for them.

However there was no recedeing: for then Sir I.Ns cryers-up would have clamored that I hindered the Printing of my owne Works my selfe: to avoyd that Imputation I was silent. tho I complained oft to some freinds in private but never did any thing whereby it might appear I allowed him

At this meeting on the 5th of March the Specimens of the Undertakers printing were produced but found to be ill done I got others done very well & paid the Printers myselfe.

June the 11 following Dr Gregory & my selfe with Mr Churchill, dined at Sir Isaac Newtons where they agreed to give Mr. Churchill 1lb 14s. per sheet. They signed the Agreement but I would not, tho they urged me much. I desired to be excused: for it was now plane to me that he designed not the good of the Impression or my Advantage but to make him a freind of a great Name: by obliging a person I never had any Acquaintance with & enriching him at my Cost. The point being over I was in hopes that the presse should have been set to work Immediately: for I had about 50 Sheets of Observations made with the Sextant, redy copied, & the rest of that sort would easily be finished before these could be printed off. but I found my selfe deceived: we were as far of from printing as if no such bargain had been made.

At Midsummer following I payd my Amanuensis & Calculators a quarters pay my selfe; & Sir Is. to encourage me to doe it, talked often of drawing the Princes money, but, when I waited on him July the 4th following & told him that I must goe into Surry to reap my harvest (as I usually did every year about this time), he put me of again, before I could say any thing to him of it, by telling me that Dr Arbuthnots daughter was ill & that the Dr could doe nothing till her recovery, that it was not fit we should begin to print till we had receaved his Royal Highness's monys & that it would be soon enough at my return. I had put 12 sheets, ready for the presse, into his hands a week before, He thought to work me to his ends by putting me to extraordinary charges in maintaining & paying an Amanuensis & calculators at my own charges. But, I resolved to bear this expense patiently, & defeat his designes.

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After this I caused my Amanuensis & Calculators to goe on diligently with their worke & carried on the Observations for compleating the Catalogue & others according as I had opportunitys but Nn became dayly more perverse & sought by severall vexatious pretences to discourage me & weary me if possible. I paid My Calculators & Amanuensis 3 quarters without any present prospect of being any wayes reimbursed but yet I had hopes, if once the press began to work they would not find any new tricks or pretences to delay repayeing me but herein too I found my self mistaken those that have begun to do ill things never blush to do worse & worse to secure themselves. Sir N had still more to doe, & was ready at coyning new excuses & pretexts to cover his disingenuous & malitious practices I had none but very honest & honorable designes in my mind I met his cunning forecasts with sincere & honest answers & thereby frustrated not a few of his malitious designs.

finding that I persisted unwearied in my purposes he demanded to have my first Night Notes put into his hands that hee might compare them with my Copy. These were wrote in 4to Volumes & from them were commonly transcribed correctly into large folios next morning from which the Copies were taken. I knew that he would be mistaken & that they would not serve his designe about the winter of feb. 170$\frac{5}{6}$ they were put into his hands: ffeb 23 1705-6. Mr. Hodgson acquainted me that Sir Is: had showed him 3 or 4 pages of errata that were committed in transcribeing as he supposed & a Table made by Dr Gregory for turning the Revolves of the Screw into degrees, ′ & ″ wherein he wisely had supposed the revolve everywhere equall & equable: I smiled at this & promised to send them my own Tables for that purpose & shewed them their mistakes & that there were no materiall errors committed: this was some small mortification to them: but they had learnt not to be ashamed.

Tho I had refused to handle any of the Princes money but what was to repay my proper disbursements, & Sir IN had granted that then it was not necessary I should sign any agreements with the Referees yet now he became very positive for Articles he had sayd to some of his Confidants that he would hamper me with Articles: it had come to my ears & therefore on his Urging me I drew up some for the Undertaker to signe. as that he should print onely 400 Copies. that he should have no interest in the Originall, &c. but these were not to his purpose. I would not Court him; to bring about his <82> low designes he makes Articles himselfe in which some things of mine were inserted & in them he covenants the Undertaker should print 5 sheets a week & for reprinting of faulty sheets. & that I should have 125lb paid me when ten sheets were printed of. these were read to me once. & I was required to signe them immediately else the worke was at a stand. no time would be allowed to consider of them. or mend any thing I thought amisse in them I was then near 140lb out of pocket all my Copy was ready for the presse, or soon would be. If I refused the worke would be broke of imediately. & the fault would be thrown upon mee. for Sir I.N. lived in the Neighbourhood of the Court I at 6 miles distance. he had his close freind the Lord Halifax to support him ther with the Princes Physitian I had nothing but my sincerity & Gods blessing to depend upon. Trusting on these alone I signed them not doubting but now the press would begin.[2]

But herein I soone found my self deceaved This would not satisfie: I would not yet cry up Sir Is. as others did to bring me to that basenesse now he has gotten my books of night notes he wants a Copy of so much of the Catalogue as I had gone through with to be trusted into his hands he therfore demanded it I answered that it was not then perfected that I believed it would conteine a good Number more than I had yet observed and rectified. that the stars allready in it were about 1500 but probably I should make them 2500. that these were the result of all my labors in which haveing spent above 2000lb of my owne money above my Allowances it would neither be prudent nor safe to trust a Copy of them out of my owne keeping he answered that I might then put them into his hands sealed up. whereby I understood that they were to be so kept by him till I had finished the whole. & was ready to print it. I considered also that this half of my Catalogue would be of no advantage to him & consented; I therefore deliverd the copy of so much of the Catalogue as was finished into Mr. Hodgsons hands, with orders to seal it up in Sir C Wrens presence & deliver it to Sir Isaac Newton when 10 sheets were printed, & 125lb (which would then be payable by the Articles) should be paid me; this was April 8th, 1706: but this direction I waived afterwards: & it was put into his hands the week after without receaving a farthing for the board or pay of my Amanuensis, or Calculators. for honest Sir Is: N. would (to use his owne words) have all things in his own power, to spoyle or sink them. that he might force me to second his designes, & applaud him which no honest man would not nor could doe. &, God be thanked. I lay under no necessity of doeing.

<83>

This business being over a week after meeting me in London he told me he would now draw 800lb of the Princes money: but sayd nothing of payeing me what I had disburst however we must now put the Worke into the press for after such unreasonable concessions on my part his pretences for further delay were all taken away & he had no excuse for further delayes.

April 4, being in London, I was told all the errors which he by mistake thought he had found in my Copy were quitted & that the first sheets would goe to the presse this week

April the 19. I waited upon him again he told me gravely that the Prince having subscribed a great summe to the Emperors loan the mony could not be receaved, but that he had taken up monys for Mr Churchill, this was to provoke me but he failed of his designe. whatever I had hitherto expended I was content to adventure a little more. Mr Churchill was put upon me had never been at any expense, must have monys put into his hands beforehand to buy paper & pay the printer. Whereby he was sure to have him at his command & tho it was covenanted that hee should print but 400 Copyes might take as many as he pleased: for I never heard nor found that he had given any bond or security for his faire dealeing however it was highly reasonable he should

But this was not all the printer being to be paid by the Undertaker and not by me, was likely to be careless of his worke. which I urged but to no purpose

It was May 16 ere the first Sheet was printed of; & June the 3rd ere we got a second; & the 3d on the 7 of June so here was a whole moneth since the first was wrought of & not two sheets yet printed in the roome of 20 that by the Articles ought to have been printed in a moneths time. I complained boldly of the dilatorinesse but in vain all the Answer I got was from Sir Is:s own mouth, that wee must proceed slowly at first, & make more dispatch after.

This was one of the fruites of our haveing an Undertaker & leaveing the printer to be paid by him who neglected the Historia Cœlestis if they had but a sorry pamphlet to print

Wee had got two Alphabets that is about 46 sheets out of the presse by Christmas 1706. & the whole (5 E) or 97, before Dec 21. 1707: that is 97 sheets. in about 89 weeks in which had they printed 5 sheets per week, according to their Articles, all the observations made . <82v> all the observations made with the Murall Arch from 1689 to 1706 might have been easily printed, as well as those made with Sextant

<84>

In the mean time Sir Is. N. sometimes stopt the presse without assigneing a reason for it or any occasion given by me but upon my complaint at the first & afterward without any sollicitation of mine at all, let it goe on again I hapned once to visit the press when he was there & took the opportunity to show him how ill the Compositor had placed the types of the figures & how much awry to the lines to which they belonged. Sh Kkk, pag 224 he put his head a little nearer to the paper, but not near enough to see the fault for he is very short sighted & Makeing a sleighting motion with his hand said Methinks they are well enough; this encouraged the Printer in his carelessnesse, the sheet was printed of & the fault not mended; & caused me to be more watchfull over the printer for now it was plane to me that the Referee as he called himselfe was not displeasd with the faults he committed & the Undertaker never concerned himselfe about them he was sure of certein gaines by the paper & presse work & somethinge More probably than we were aware of

<85>

The presse had now stood three moneth by Sir I.N. onely procurement for to keep all things wholly in his own power he had brought in an Undertaker who was useless to the businesse & served onely to spoyle the Worke or worse, & a printer whom I beleive he paid. I am sure he never consulted me about the payment of either tho there was sufficient cause all the Articles that related to them haveing been broken, but by this management hee had them wholly at his devotion, On the day appointed March the 20. 1707-8 I tooke up with me to London all the Observations here made betwixt September 1689 & December 1705, fairely copyed in 175 sheets of large paper: Six sheets were of the planets' places calculated from the Observations made with the Sextant, which ought to have been printed next after the said Observations as also a faire copy of the places of the stars in the Eclipticall & as many of the Southerne constellations as I had then rectified. The referees viewd them & Sir Is. N. after some time withdrew & calleing Dr Arbuthnot out to him produced the following paper which the other referrees as I remember signed. he would not deliver it to mee but gratiously permitted me to take a copy of it, which I have here inserted.

London, March 20, 1707-8

It is agreed between Sir Isaac Newton & Mr. John Flamsteed,

1st. That the 2d Volume of the Astronomical Observations, with the figures of the first Volume, shall be presently delivered into Sir Isaac Newtons hands

2d. That the Catalogue of the fixed Stars, here present, shall likewise be delivered into Sir Isaac Newton's hands.

3d. That the catalogue of the fixed stars, now in Sir Isaac Newton's hands, shall be delivered to Mr. Flamsteed in order to have the magnitudes inserted, & to be returned with the Magnitudes after Sixteen days.

4t. That upon the Redelivery of that Catalogue, Sir I.N. shall pay to Mr. Flamsteed, one Hundred & twenty-five pounds on the Prince's account.

5t. That upon the delivery of the Catalogue of the Fixed Stars, as far as it can be completed at this time, Mr Flamsteed shall have the rest of the Money Stipulated betwixt him & the Referrees: he Undertaking to Correct the Press, & appointing Correctors who live in Town, that the Work may not be retarded. Memorandum, That at the Same time the 2d Volume of Observations (with the figures mentioned here) was delivered into Sir Issac Newtons Hands together with a Corrected Copy of the Eclipticall Constellations & all the Southern of the Catalogue but that I Covenanted that the said 2d copy should be returned to Me to be again Revised & delivered to the Press, as the Printers should work it off; & the Copy of the Eclipticall Constellations returned me, as soon as I should return the Copy now in Sir Isa Newton's hands, with the Magnitudes Inserted.

There were present at the Meeting at the Castle Tavern, in Pater Noster Row March 20 1707/8 Mr Roberts, Sir Isa Newton, Dr Arbuthnot, Dr Gregory, Mr Churchill, Mr James Hodgson myself & Isaac Wolferman.

I was now in hope that the Presse would begin againe to work with the 2d Volume: but when after 3 or 4 moneth delay I found that for all my Instances, there was not the least step made towards it I complained of this behaviour of Sir I.N. both payeing me short of what I had disburst & of his keeping the 175 sheet of copy for the 2d Volume in his hands. this I beleive was as intended carried to him whereupon to throw all the fault upon me, 8 moneth after he had stopt the presse, hee sent me the following Order dated July 13 1708:

At a meeting of the gentlemen to whom his Royal Highness the Prince hath referred the care of printing Mr Flamsteed's astronomical papers,

It was agreed that the press should go on without further delay: & that if Mr Flamsteed do not take care that the press be well corrected, & go on with the dispatch, another Corrector be employed.

 Whitehall, July 13, 1708 F. ROBERTS CHR. WREN Vera Copia IS. NEWTON D. GREGORY IS. NEWTON FRAN. ASHTON

To prevent the designed effect of this malitious order or agreement, I wrote a letter to Sir Christopher Wren who I believed hated such practises & sent it him in a few dayes after I declined writing to Sir I N. because he might suppress it. & I doubted not but Sir Cristopher would impart it both to him & the other Referees

I tooke a copy of it myselfe, to show my acquaintance friends & some gentlemen that had an opinion of Sir I N before & could not thinke he could be guilty of such collusion as this order & my letter proved upon him. the Copy follows:

The Observatory, Monday, July 19, 1708

SIR,

The Copy of the Agreement made by the Gentlemen Referrees on Tuesday last, reflecting upon me as if by my dilatoriness I had obstructed the progress of the Press, I find myself obliged, that I may clear myself of so unjust an insinuation, with Your Leave to Acquaint you.

That tho I had got 50 Sheets of the first Volume ready copied for the Press on May the 2d 1705, yett upon severall pretences, the printing was Obstructed; and it was May 1706, before the first Sheet was printed off

That tho by the Agreement, the Undertaker was to print off five Sheets a Week, yett it was from May 1706 to October 1707 before we could gett 100 Sheets, comprehending the Observations of the first Volume, wrought of; that is near 75 weeks, So that taking altogether, the Printer dispatched not a Sheet and a halfe per Week.

Tho I did all I could to hasten and expedite the Work, as will appear by the Copies of my letters to Mr Churchill, Mr Mathews & Mr. Hodgson, that I have by me: I offerd to discharge the expense of the Pennypost Letters that brought the Proofs; if the post brought them in the Evening, I returned them next Morning: if in the Morning, they were sent back that evening after, without fayle; except once, on May the 1. 1706, when the great Eclipse of the Sun hapning, company hindered me from correcting & returning that proof till the Morning following & no longer.

The greatest dispatch, was made, both this year 1706 & the following 1707, in Autumn; when I was Absent in Surrey, yett that was less than the 5 Sheets per Week and then the Work was allways worst done.

At my Return after the last Years Harvest, I found a whole Sheet had been Omitted by the Printer, who had either lost or mislayd it: I copied it immediately from my Manuscripts, & sent it to him, with directions to print it, & reprint the next. I caused also Sir Isaac Newton to be acquainted with it: & informed both Sir Isaac and the Printer that I had about halfe a dozen Sheets more, comprehending the Planetts places derived from the Observations made with the Sextant, contain'd in this Volume, to be added to it; but this was not taken notice of, The 6 sheets were not call'd for; and the Press has stood still ever since

At this Meeting the Undertaker Urged to have a Corrector appointed in London; this I lookt upon only as a Contrivance to throw the delays of the press, caused partly by his own and his Printers Neglect, upon me: & therefore having Answered it then, as I have done in this Paper, to the Satisfaction, as I thought, of the Referrees present, I took no further Notice of it.

Since You now know that the Printer has had the dropt Sheet in his hands full Nine Months; that he may have six Sheets more whenever the Referrees please; that they have also 175 Sheets of the second Volume in their hands; that I never delayed Correcting and returning the proof Sheets as usually; I hope you are satisfied I have not been guilty of any dilatoriness or Neglect, & that you will not suffer me to be supposed or insinuated to have been guilty of any

But if Sir Isaac Newton insists upon proceeding to print the Catalogue imediately before the 2d Volume. I cannot at present consent to it: for, since the Press has Stopt, I have set my Self to compleat it; and having gotten two payr of hands to help me, have perfected some Constellations, that were not compleat before: I have begun the most difficult, and am going into the Country, as I use allways to do at this time of the Year, to look after my Occasions; there, I hope to perfect a good part of what remains, and the whole in a few Months after my Return. Now You will say your Self, were it your own Case, 'tis not fitt to sett to printing the Catalogue before it be as compleat as I can render it at present, I must say further, that 'tis altogether improper to print it before the Observations of the 2d volume: because 'tis almost wholly derived from them. The Observations of the Planetts in this are much more Numerous than in the first and I will add, much Exacter, & if any One be of another Opinion, for want of experience I shall bring such Proofs of it, as no Equall and Candid Person shall ever reject.

As for Correcting the Press, I am altogether unwilling that the last Sheet shall be printed off in the remaining Volume, till I have seen them my Self, but the Catalogue is of that Importance that I shall never consent that any Page of it should be printed off till I have fully corrected and received from the Press a Proof without faults. I am not only willing but desirous that the Press should proceed to finish the first Volume of Observations, I have spoke to Mr Hodgson to take Care of correcting the 2d Proofs, and with him I shall leave the six sheets to be Added; which when they are wrought off, Sir Isaac Newton has 175 sheets of the 2d Volume in his hands, that the Press may proceed with whilest I am Compleating the Catalogue, So there need be no stop on my Account as there never was, nor hereafter shall be, God spareing me Life & Health & prospering, as I firmly believe he will, my Sincere Endeavours.

I think to send a copy of this letter to Mr Roberts & doubt not but you will imparte the contents of it to Sr Isaack Newton

I am with all due respect Sir for all your favours

JOHN FLAMSTEED, M.R.

Then this letter was delivered & imparted to Sir I N as I desired it should be. yet I never receaved any answer to it, but the presse was stopt, & no more talke of it this year: In the latter end of which the Prince of Denmarke died, on Oct 28th, 1708 in whom the Observatory lost one that would have been a great & Noble patron, had hee not been prevented by one of his Physitians who was influenced & gouverned by Sir I.N.

Being now not disturbed by him any more at present, I set my selfe to carry on such observations as I wanted & made good advances in it adding many stars to some constellations that I had gone threw before.

But when I least expected it I was afresh disturbed by another peice of Sir Is. N. ingenuitys: after the Princes death, the old Ministry was changed a New one intro <87> duced. his patrone was well with the cheif of them the Queen's Physitian was in his interest, and the New Secretary of States. it was not enough that Sir I.N. had gotten my Observations made with the Murall Arch into his hands by surprise togeather with above halfe the Catalogue Whatever my expenses had been or paines in makeing it, so long as I would not leave my selfe and paines wholly at his disposall: and therefore he procures by the Meanes of the Physitian Minister & Secretary Saint John an Order constituting the President (Sir. I.N.) of the Royal Society the Vice President & whom else they should think fit of the said Society. the Visitors of the Observatory: tis dated Dec 12. 1710 & was sent me by the Office Messenger on the 14 with the Queens letter intimating it {illeg} Copys whereof I have here inserted.

To our trusty and well-beloved the President of our Royal Society for the time being.

ANNE REGINA

Trusty and well-beloved, we greet you well. Whereas we have been given to understand that it would contribute very much to the improvement of Astronomy and Navigation, if we should appoint constant Visitors of our Royal Observatory at Greenwich, with sufficient powers for the due execution of that trust, We have therefore thought fit, in consideration of the great learning, experience and other necessary qualifications of our Royal Society, to constitute and appoint, as we do, by these presents, constitute and appoint you, the President, and in your absence the Vice-President of our Royal Society for the time being, together with such others of the Council as our said Royal Society shall think fit to join with you, to be constant Visitors of our said Royal Observatory at Greenwich: authorising and requiring you to demand of our Astronomer and Keeper of our said Observatory, for the time being, to deliver to you within six months after every year shall be elapsed, a true and fair copy of the annual observations he shall have made. And our further Will and Pleasure is that you do likewise, from time to time, order and direct our said Astronomer and Keeper of our said Royal Observatory to make such astronomical observations as you in your judgment shall think proper. And that you do survey and inspect our instruments in our said Observatory; and as often as you shall find any of them defective that you do inform the principal Officers of our Ordnance thereof; that so the said instrument may be either exchanged or repaired. And so we bid you farewell. Given at our Court of St. James's, the 12th day of December, 1710, in the ninth year of our reign. By Her Majesty's command,

H. ST. JOHN

SIR,                    Whitehall, December 12, 1710

Her majesty commands me to acquaint you that she has thought fit, for the improvement of astronomy and navigation, to appoint the President, and in his absence the Vice-President of the Royal Society for the time being, together with such other as the Council of the said Society shall think fit to join with them, to be constant Visitors of the Royal Observatory. And for the better enabling you to make the necessary observations for these ends, directions are likewise given for repairing, erecting, or changing Her Majesty's instruments in the said Observatory, as well as for purchasing those that belong to you.

The Queen does not doubt but you will readily comply with the instructions the said Visitors shall think to give you. However I am commanded to signify Her Majesty's pleasure to you that you do deliver to them, within six months after every year shall be expired, a fair and true copy of the annual observations you shall have made: and you do also make such astronomical observations as the said Visitors in their judgment shall at any time think to direct you. I am, Sir, your most humble Servant,

H. ST. JOHN

The next morning after I receaved this, I waited on Mister Secretary Saint John & told him that I was injured and should be hindred by this new constitution of Visitors. that I wanted no new Instruments & that if I did the Visitors were not skillful enough to contrive them. that for my repairs of the Observatory the Office of the Ordinance had hitherto taken care of them & would now as soone as the weather should be fit, that the Instruments & clocks in the house were all my owne that I had hitherto repayred them all at my own charge that I had expended above 2000l more than my appointments in instruments & assistants & that it would be very unjust to goe about to deprive mee both of the honor & benefit of my own labor & expenses & confer them on those who had done nothing but obstruct & hinder me all they Could & wanted to boast of their Merits in preserving my labors because they had Nothing of their own worth the publick view. Mr Secretary seemd Not to regard what I said, but answered me haughtily The Queen would be obeyd The Lord Rochester the Queen Unkle, liveing near the Secretary's office I also waited upon him & shewed him what tricks & disingenuous usage were put upon me by Sir. I.N. & tho I found no immediate advantage by it, yet I am apt to beleive it was of use to me afterwards.

Sir. I.N. valued himselfe very much upon the suggestion that it would contribute very much to the improvement of Astronomy & Navigation if there were constant Visitors appointed of the Observatory, &c & one of the principall of the Councell of the Royal Society could not forbear to speake of it to me in publick company: whereas the contrary is evident from what hapned to the Noble Tycho, who had no Visitors of his Observatory <88> appointed over him during the Reign of his patron King ffrederic the 2 & when some persons were appointed in the following reigne of King Christian, they were such as were very unfit for that purpose, much lesse skillful than himselfe, & made use of purposely to asperse him onely, to make him uneasy & withdraw. that the Courtiers might get his appointments (which were 2000 dollars a year allowd him from the Tresury, a ffee in Norway, worth 1000 dollars per year more, & the prebend of Roschild, of 1000 more) into the kings hand againe which they did & soon, by him, were conferd on Templars. My appointments, tho very small in comparison of his, were also designed by Sir I N for other persons that would be dependent on him; & this expedient of Visitors was to performe strange things. but the good providence of God so ordered it that I received but little damage by it. & he got little but shame & disgrace for his ingratitude to me in disturbing me in my businesse which he was bound by his Oath to assist me in, as President of the Royal Society & as cheife (as he had made himself) of the Princes Referrees, or indeed the all of them

I had told Dr. Arbuthnot in one of my letters[3] that one of Dr. Hallys best freinds & the wisest of them had sayd of him that the onely way to have my businesse spoyled effectually was to trust it to his management Now the truth of this expression was proved for I found not onely the names of the starrs in my Catalogue altered, but the numbers also in many places changed and others put in their roomes that were sometimes 15 minutes false. & therefore it was very effectually spoyled

And by boasting of these corrections, as he cald them he would insinuate to the World that they were more obliged to him for his paines in correcting than they Were to me for above 30 yeares spent in composeing it. the Cost of makeing Instruments & hireing assistants at my owne charge, for by altering the names (to make them agree with his own faulty hemisphere) he had made himself in some sort, but a very bad one, a proprietor in that Catalogue he printed, without my name to it, or ever consulting me about it: which I would never consent to, as they well knew by my letter to Sir Ch: Wren which had been imparted to Sir I N & Halley was not ignorant of.

In the meane time Sir I.N. summons me to meet him at the house of the Royal Society in Crane Court October 26 1711 where I found him with Dr Sloane Dr Mead & one more that I knew not but I believe was his or their Clark at the time. he cald these three, with himselfe a Committee & told me they had sent for me to know what repayres I wanted, or Instruments. I told him that the Office of the Ordnance took care of my repayres that it was now too late in the year to set about them but that as soon as the Spring came I should have that done which was necessary, & as for my Instruments they were all my own either given me by Sir Jonas Moor, or made by myselfe at my own charge, & always repayred at my own expense & further that I would not suffer any one to concern themselves about repayring of my owne instruments, in which & necessary assistance I had spent above 2000lb.

The impetuous gentleman hereupon said, As good have no Observatory as No Instruments & soon, conceiveing that I apprehended his design & obviated it by my Answers, broke out into a passion & used me as I was never used before in my life: I gave no answers; but onely desired him to be calmer, & moderate his passions, thankd him for the many honorable names he gave me & told him God had blest my endeavours hitherto, that his Wisdom was beyond the Wisdom of men & that I committed my all to him. Dr Mead seconded him unprovokt in his ill language but Dr Sloane held his peace I thankt him for his civility permitted him to help me down stairs, & at the door met Hally who had not been far of all the time & I believe had heard Sir I.N. shew his best guests, It would be too long to give an account of it all, there is a longer in my old book of Letters, pag 104. 105 A where those that come after me will find it: I pray God forgive him I do.

I doe not remember that I ever saw the observations of mine printed at the same press with my corrupted Catalogue till 3 yeares after when <91> when there were 300 Copies of the printed edition of the observations given me (as they were designed) by King George the whole were Intended for me by the Prince George of Denmark but I was forced to be content with this part of them & took them with thanks; I found them as much corrupted as the Catalogue but if God spares me life I hope to present the World with a perfect edition of them the editor haveing transcribed onely the observations of the planets & made a sorry & fallacious excuse for his omitting the observations of all the fixed stars that were not employed for finding of the planets' places.

On the 18 of June 1712 the Impudent editor with his wife, son & daughters attending him & a neighbouring Clergiman in his company came hither. I sayd little to him he offered to burne his Catalogue (so hee called his corrupted & spoyled copy of mine, of which I had now a correct & enlarged edition in the presse & the 2d sheet printing of) if I would print mine. I am apt to think he knew it was so & was endeavoring to prevent it; but to render his design ineffectual I said little to him of it: so he went away not much wiser than he came.

August 1, 1712, Sir I.N. came himself, accompanied with his Editor Dr Thorp Mr Machin, Mr Rowley & Mr Hodgson who had given me notice of their comeing beforehand. I had provided Mr Clark & Mr Ryley to attend our Conversation & accompany them to View house & my Instruments, being a little lame myself with the Gout they had a view of what they pleased except my Library. I gave them a glass of wine. Sir Isaack promised to return me a Greek Ptolemy he had borrowed of me & 4 Volumes in 4o of the first night notes, which he had kept in his hands now about six yeares to no other purpose but to show his Authority & good Nature & returned not till more than four yeares after, when I had commenced a suite against him for them.

This businesse being over, & Sir I.N. finding that his Visitation had not the effect he promised to himselfe, hee tooke care to let mee know, by the Secretarys letter as soon as the yeare 1711 was expired that the Royal Society (my Visitors) expected the copy of the observations of that year I returned an answer to him that they should have them in the time prescribed by the Order. & accordingly caused my Amanuensis, Jos. Crosthwaite to transcribe & leave them at their house in Crane court some dayes before midsummer 1712. I expected that they should have sent me a receipt for them: but Civil & just Sir I.N. esteemed it too great a favour for me. I did the same for the year following on a second letter, from the Secretary of the Royal Society & the next year 1713-1714 I found them both printed, abridged, & so spoyled by the Editor of my Catalogue that I would no longer owne them, for mine the most materiall observations were omitted, & the rest so managed that it seemed to me he had designed to spoyle them; out of Spight, he had inserted some that were imperfect, & given the Right Ascentions & distances of the Planets from the pole, deduced from the Observations but not their longitudes & latitudes this was too much drudgery for his acuteness {illeg}and who was used to procure what he published as his owe at easyer rates.

<92>

Apr 19 1717 After the same manner he got My observations of the yeare 1713 into his hands abridged, spoyled, and printed them in his Transactions for the year 1715 Numb 344. But the Queens deceasing before they could lay any claime to the next yeares, & their authority ceaseing I declined answering their further demands for tho their Authority ceased, yet their confidence did not; & the Editor who now was one of their Secretarys sent Me a bold letter to demand them, as if he had never done me any injury; which I layd by me & kept thereby that yeares from being spoyled. how unfaithfull he was in his copy I hope the skillful may see ere long for my Amanuensis J. Cr is now Copying the Volume of Observations that Sir IN. got by surprize into his hands, has nearly finished it. & I hope I may live through the blessing of God to see it published with the Observations of 12 following yeares, but if his good providence shall not continue my life so long I trust my executors will doe it according to the directions of my Will.

The last sheet of my corrected & enlarged Catalogue was printed of, Dec 5 1712 after which I designed to have had the presse to proceed with the Observations from which it was derived made with the Murall Arch but what ever Instances I made to Sir Is. Newton to have the Copy I had trusted into his hands in order to be printed I could not prevayle with him to returne it. So I set my self to continue my Observations at such times as were fit for them, & to calculate the planets places from such observations as I had made with it & to correct the tables of the planets motions In which I blesse God for it though I had not the success I expected yet I had such as gave me light & will be of use to those that come after me & may serve to perfect our knowledg of the heavens wherein the height of Wisdom is shewn of our creator if after me there shall be any found that will prosecute these studies with the same sedulity patience & sincere love of Truth that I have now for above these five & fifty years.

August 1 1714. King George succeeded to the Crown of Great Brittain. Soon after a Noble peer died who dureing his life, had supported Sir I.N. the Officers at Court were changed the new Lord Chamberlin knew me well and one that was frequently employed by him, wrote to me that through his meanes I might get the printed Copy of my Observations that had been designed for me by the Prince Georg of Denmark, into my hands with little trouble the Lord Chamberline haveing by his Office the Care of his Librarys. I thankt God for so good an opportunity my friend with the Duke of Bolton did his best but after all we find that Lords of the Treasury had the power of disposeing of them. Mr Walpole was first commissioner: Mr Methuen unaskt became my freind Mr Newport (now Lord Torrington) I had been acquainted with long since I caused a petition wherein my case was truely represented to them to be drawn up & delivered. Whereupon 300 Copys were orderd to be delivered to me <93> by the Undertaker Mr Churchill who by his Articles was bound to print but 400 I brougt them down to Greenwich and finding both Hallys corrupted edition of my Catalogue, & abridgment of my observations no lesse spoyled by him I seperated them from my Observations & some few dayes after I made a Sacrifice of them to heavenly Truth as I should doe of all the rest of my Editors paines of the like Nature if the Author of Truth should hereafter put them into My power that none of them but what he has given away & sent into forreign Countries may remaine to shew the ingratitude of two of my Countrymen who had been obliged by me more on particular Occasions than any other Mathematicall acquaintance, & who had used me Worse then ever the Noble Tycho was used in Denmark. & I should have felt the effects of their Malice & envy more had not the good providence of Almighty God prevented them.

Whilest I was solliciting this affair in the Exchequer Sir I.N. was passeing his accounts ther. concerneing the disbursement of the princes monys. he would never own to me what the prince allowed for that charge of printing. least he should quit any part of that power he pretended & he would gladly have me have thought him to have had. I have heard that the Prince designed 1200 pound for the printing Dr. Keile told me 2500 Which I am apt to beleive is true the other 1300 being not less than the Engraveing of the Maps of the Constellations & other figures will Cost but here I learnt that Sir I.N accounts specyfied 150l given to Dr. Hally for the paines he had been at in correcting, as he calls it, & publishing my Catalogue & to one of his servants for assisting him in his calculateing the places of the stars, 30l. so that Sir I.N. had wasted 180 in spoyling of it besides he told me that he had given 20l more to the poore ffrench man that drew {&} engraved the flattering figures for the frontispieces of Capitalls {up}on his complaint that the first agreement was too hard a {b}argain. So that here was 200l of the Princes mony {th}rown away onely to shew his liberality unnecessarily {whi}ch evidently proves his ignorance of the businesse for, {th}e catalogue was very correct, before his Editor {correc}ted it & the designer or engraver of the frontispiece & Capi{tals} knew no doubt how to make a bargaine for his paines {Th}e Editor & his calculator were both Indigent {and he} found this way of releiving them without any expense {to} himselfe, & makeing them open their mouths wide in crying him {up for his} liberality as they had done before for his skill in what he is {no master} of: whilest my amanuensis J: Crosthwait was at more paines in {correcting} their faults & calculateing the places of 400 stars {more} than were in my first copy, without any allowance {more} than the yearly Wages I gave him.

Having thus gotten my owne printed yearly observations & Catalogue into my own hands <37> I caused some of the Observations of Mr Gascoigne & Mr Crabtree made in Yorkshire & Lancashire in the yeares 1638. 39. 40. 41. 42, togeather with my owne made at Derbyshire betwixt the yeares 1669 & 1675, which I have mentioned in My Estimate, as those that were to comprise a part of my first Volume of Observations, to be printed in Latin, togeather with a smal Table for turneing the partes measured, by the Micrometer either in the longer or the lesser tube into minutes & seconds of a degree. I also sent to Sir I.N. to returne me the 175 sheets trusted into his hands {on} March 20. 1708-9, to be printed but finding he delayed to restore or even flatly denied to do it, I set my amanuensis to copy them, in order to have them printed that they might be published togeather with the Catalogue in their proper order which I had first proposed in my said Estimate & which I endeavored allways to preserve: whilest Sir I.N. as pertinaciously contended to obstruct & break that he might thereby force me to some mean submission to procure his consent. tho the Worke was nothing of it his, he had concerned himselfe with the Prince G. of Denmark without my consent in the Edition & was so bold as by his Creatures to intimate to me what he wanted: but this Cunning failed him the sheets will be copied in a short time. & I hope if God spares me health one year more, I may see them all printed & fit to be published.

[1] 'Do all the good that lies in your power'

[2] The Articles are dated Nov: 10. in the 4th of the Queen Anne or 1705

[3] April 18, 1711