Page:The life of Matthew Flinders.djvu/367

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utility of the discovery will be well proved, and the consequences will probably be as favourable to me as the conclusion of the voyage might have been without it. I do indeed privately hope that, whether the voyage is or is not further prosecuted, I may attain another step; many circumstances are favourable to this, but the peace and the non-completion of the voyage are against it. To balance these, I must secure the interest of the India House, by means of Sir Joseph, Mr. Dalrymple, and the owner of the Bridgewater, Princeps, with whom I am acquainted. I am fortunate in having the attachment of Governor King, who by introductions, favourable reports, and I believe every proper means in his power, has, and is still, endeavouring to assist me; and you are to understand that my going home for another ship is in conformity to an opinion first brought forward by him. The shores of the Gulf of Carpentaria have undergone a minute examination.

"It might appear that the presence of the French upon these coasts would be much against me; but I consider that circumstance as favourable, inasmuch as the attention of the world will be more strongly attracted towards New Holland, and some comparisons will no doubt be found between our respective labours. Now, in the department of geography, or rather hydrography, the only one where the execution rests with me, they seem to have been very vague and inconclusive, even by their own testimony. By comparison, therefore, my charts will rise in value. It is upon these that I wish to rest my credit. You must, however, make the requisite allowance for the circumstances under which each part was examined, and these circumstances I have made the charts themselves explain, I hope to your satisfaction, as you will see on publication.

"I shall see your wife, if in London, as well as her