Auction Date: 26/11/2014 at 01pm
The Duke of Marlborough’s last campaign – autograph letter from James Craggs the Elder – Postmaster General and largely implicated in the disaster of the South Sea Bubble – to the Duke of Marlborough dated September 14th 1711, congratulating him on the success of his victory at the Siege of Bouchain – Marlborough’s last victory : ‘…this fills all honest men with the utmost joy for the sake of their Country as well as respect for your un-paralleled services & I wish there were none whose envy or ill wishes tended to detract them but as it was in the beginning is now &c …’The letter continues to provide information on other leading politicians of the day including Godolphin ‘…all the news our Coffee House talks of is Mr Pryors being gone again; I shall trouble you by Mr Collins who I suppose will be going in few days but I find Mr Sutton does not know whether he shall return to the Campe againe…’ 3pp 4to. The reference to envy and ill wishes clearly underlines the growing campaigns at home against Marlborough. At the end of this campaign he was stripped of all his positions and the command of the Army given to the Duke of Ormonde. Once the darling of the UK after his fabulous victory at Blenheim, Marlborough totally fell out of favour with Queen Anne, and this letter effectively marks the end of his career. Aged repairs with old adhesive tape which should be removed. Affixed to a larger album leaf which also has a fragment signed by Craggs, William Bridges and Thomas Musgrave.