Page:Dramatic Moments in American Diplomacy (1918).djvu/30

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10
DRAMATIC MOMENTS

million at the disposal of your agent, who will style himself Roderique Hortalez & Company, this being the signature and title of the firm under which I have agreed to conduct the entire business. One half of this sum, changed into moidores or Portuguese pieces, the only foreign money that passes in America, will be immediately forwarded thither.

Roderique Hortalez intends to use the remaining half million in procuring powder, and conveying it without delay to the Americans. Instead, however, of buying this powder in Holland, or even in France, at the current prices of 20 or 30 sols tournois a pound, the price at which the Dutch hold it, or even higher, when supplying the Americans, the real device of the operation consisting as Roderique Hortalez hopes, in secretly procuring, with the sanction of Your Majesty, all necessary powder and saltpetre of your Registrars, on a basis of from five to six sols a pound.

Before terminating this paper I wish to hazard an idea suggested during its compo-