CENTURY

[ Laurence Binyon, poet and scholar. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('Laurence Binyon') to 'Mrs Erskine', complaining of little time for 'the writing of the poems I have planned'.

Author: 
Laurence Binyon [ Robert Laurence Binyon ] (1869-1943), English poet and scholar, Keeper of the Department of Prints and Drawings at the British Museum ]
Publication details: 
From the British Museum, London, on cancelled letterhead of the Athenaeum, Pall Mall. 25 July 1920.
£50.00

2pp., 12mo. In good condition, on lightly-aged paper, with thin strip of stub along one edge from previous mounting. He begins by apologising for having been 'so rude' in not answering the letter sooner. After explaining the cause, he continues: 'I fear I'm not much use for a society such as you are starting, because my life is so entirely without leisure. You see, I have only my evenings for doing my own work, & I am always about 3 years behind with the writing of the poems I have planned - to say nothing of the lectures & articles one has to write to eke out an income'.

[ Ofspring Blackall, Bishop of Exeter. ] Autograph Note Signed ('Ofspr. Exon') to his brother, directing the purchase of £500 in South Sea stock.

Author: 
Ofspring Blackall (1655-1716), Bishop of Exeter, religious controversialist [ The South Sea Bubble, 1711-1720 ]
Publication details: 
Westminster. 18 February 1712 [ 1711 O.S. ].
£600.00

1p., 8vo. In good condition, on lightly-aged paper. Reads: 'Westminster Feb. 18. 1711/12. | Sr | I desire you will buy and accept five Hundred Pounds Stock in the Capitall Stock of the Company of Merchants of Great Britain trading to the South Seas for my Account and in my name; which will oblige | Sr | Yor. Affect. Brother & Servt | Ofsp. Exon'. Annotated in a nineteenth-century hand at bottom-left: 'Dr Ofspring Blackall.' At the time of writing the South Sea Company had only just been created. It would collapse spectacularly in 1720.

[ Richard Garnett, Assistant Keeper of Printed Books in the British Museum. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('R. Garnett.') to unnamed recipient, presumably a bookseller, thanking him for pointing out 'unusual books'.

Author: 
Richard Garnett (1835-1906), Assistant Keeper of Printed Books in the British Museum, scholar and poet
Publication details: 
On letterhead of the British Museum, London. 17 December 1895.
£40.00

1p., 12mo. In good condition, lightly aged. Reads: 'Dear Sir, | I am much obliged by your letter, and shall always be glad if you will point out unusual books. We have, however, both those which you mention, and must not buy duplicates.'

[ Richard Cumberland, Bishop of Peterborough. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('Ric: Cumberland:') to his 'Cousin', Rev. Isaac L(angtton?), regarding money worries and plans for Christmas. With his ecclesiastical signature ('Ric. Peterborough:')

Author: 
Richard Cumberland (1632-1718), Bishop of Peterborough, philosopher associated with the Cambridge Platonists, and friend of Samuel Pepys
Publication details: 
Stamford [ Lincolnshire ]. 22 December 1687.
£1,200.00

1p., 8vo. In bifolium. Aged and worn, and having received a careful professional repair. Addressed: 'For the Reverend Mr Isaac L at Mris Moor's house in Harborough'. Addressed to 'Deare Cousin'. Eighteen lines of text. He is forwarding another letter (not present), and is adding 'these few lines let you understand that I am safe returned from London and have recovered from that cold and illness that I got in my journey'. He invites him to Stamford for the Christmas period, which he hopes 'to passe more comfortably than I did my last'.

[ The Soakers' Club, a 'convivial club' in Covent Garden. ] Club rules and 'Promoter's Address' by Julian Sharman, printed by the Chiswick Press.

Author: 
Julian Sharman, 'Promoter' of the Soakers' Club, Covent Garden, London [ The Chiswick Press, London ]
Publication details: 
'Printed at the Chiswick Press' [ Chiswick Press: - Printed by Whittingham and Wilkins, Tooks Court, Chancery Lane ]. 1874. [ Sharman's address dated from 'Covent Garden, | May, 1874.'
£50.00

[1] + 13pp., 12mo. Stitched. In fair condition, lightly aged and worn. A tasteful production in grey printed wraps. Elaborate pseudo-seventeenth-century design to title-page replicated on front cover. Five-page 'Promoter's Address'' to 'My Friend and Pitcher', signed in type by Sharman, followed by a page listing the five members of the 'Committee, 1874-5' (Julian Sharman; Henry S. Leigh; Bourchier F. Hawksley; Jas. J. Railston; F. W. Robinson), and five pages carrying the club's fourteen rules.

[ Josiah Burchett, Secretary of the Admiralty. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('J Burchett') to Lord of the Admiralty Sir Robert Rich, a sick note describing his symptoms and the circumstances.

Author: 
Josiah Burchett (c.1666-1746), Secretary of the Admiralty, clerk and servant to Samuel Pepys [ Sir Robert Rich (1648-1699) of Roos Hall, Suffolk; James Welwood (1652-1727), physician ]
Publication details: 
Epsom. 26 August 1697.
£750.00

2pp., 8vo. Bifolium. In good condition, lightly-aged, with seal cut away from second leaf, which carries a postmark and the address: 'For the Rt. Honoble. Sr. Robert Rich, one of the Lords of the Admiralty. At his house near ye Admty. Office. | Westminster'. Thirty-two lines of text.

[ James Elmes, architect. ] Autograph Letter Signed to publisher Charles Ollier, requesting clarification on the question of the parcel of 'Mr Cooke'.

Author: 
James Elmes (1782-1862), architect, civil engineer and author [ Charles Ollier (1788-1859), publisher ]
Publication details: 
2 Childs Place, Temple [ London ]. 18 July 1827.
£50.00

2pp., 12mo. Bifolium. In good condition, lightly aged. He begins by explaining that he has been 'too much engaged' since last writing to Ollier 'to come so far westward', or he would not intrude on his time. He asks him to return 'the letter of Mr Cooke, that I enclosed to you, under cover and a line just to say, whether there were two parcels, as he mentions, or only the one, that I took, as he desires great care and a return of them'.

[ John Adolphus, historian. ] Autograph Letter Signed

Author: 
John Adolphus (1768-1845), historian and barrister, of German-Jewish extraction [ Sir Samuel Egerton Brydges (1762-1837) ]
Publication details: 
Temple [ London ]. 8 January 1808.
£120.00

2pp., 4to. Bifolium. In good condtion, lightly aged. Addressed, with postmark, on reverse of second leaf, to 'Saml. Egerton Brydges Esqr. | Denton | Canterbury'. Concerning his change of the plan he told 'Mr. Lodge' regarding his intention to visit Brydges at Denton: 'I go to Canterbury merely to attend the sessions, and am very lame'. If Brydges is in Canterbury, Adolphus would be happy to see him 'at the house of Mr. George Plomer (late Mr Warley's) in the High Street'.

[ Henry Goss Custard, organist. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('H Goss Custard'), regarding the 'Specification of the Liverpool Cathedral Organ'.

Author: 
Henry Goss Custard, organist of Liverpool Cathedral
Publication details: 
On letterhead of 5 Canning Street, Liverpool. 2 March 1926.
£50.00

3pp., 12mo. Bifolium. In good condition, lightly aged. He writes with evident pride regarding, beginning by explaining that the specification of the organ 'was originally drawn up by Mr. Ridley the nephew of the Donor, but it has been considerably modifiied by me since then'. When the building is finished, it is not intended to supplement the organ 'by another at the West End'.

[ Jakob Salomon Bartholdy, Prussian diplomat. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('J S Bartholdy') to the French composer and singer Sophie Gail

Author: 
Jakob Salomon Bartholdy [ Jakob Ludwig Salomon Bartholdy ] (1779-1825), Prussian diplomat, Consul-General in Rome, uncle of Felix Mendelssohn [ Sophie Gail [ née Edmée Sophie Garre ] (1775-1819) ]
Publication details: 
2 January 1819.
£950.00

1p., 12mo. Bifolium. In good condition, on lightly-aged paper. Addressed on second leaf, with broken seal in red wax, 'A Madame | Madame Sophie de Gail | &c &c &c | Paris'. Nine lines of neatly and elegantly written text. A somewhat flirtatious acceptance of an invitation, with Bartholdy noting 'les belles choses que vous daignez me dire [...] Votre maniere est trop sedisante pour ne pas faire de l'impression'. It was at Bartholdy's suggestion that his sister Lea, the mother of the composer Felix Mendelssohn, joined him in adopting the surname Bartholdy.

[ George Rolleston, zoologist and archaeologist. ] Autograph Letter Signed to '<Cornwell?>', regarding a visit to excavations at a 'Long Barrow', his heavy workload, and the 'Cissbury arrivals'.

Author: 
George Rolleston (1829-1881), Linacre Professor of Zoology at the University of Oxford
Publication details: 
Without place or date. [ Oxford, 1870s? ]
£50.00

2pp., 12mo. Bifolium. In good condition, lightly-aged, with traces of glue from mount on blank reverse. He will have his 'hands quite full up to the day before Christmas Day with Examinations', the 'nuisance' being 'terrific'. he would like 'a few days to prepare for your coming & to get the Long Barrow all into order for you'. He suggests 'three days or so after Christmas Day with its diverse distractions' as the best time 'for you to come here'. He will be 'all dazed otherwise', having to get 'a paper on the Cissbury arrivals out by Jan 1'.

[ Henry Dundas, 1st Viscount Melville. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('Melville') to an unknown recipient, commenting on his Indian 'narrative', with recollections of Warren Hastings and Sir Philip Francis.

Author: 
Henry Dundas, 1st Viscount Melville (1742-1811), Scottish Tory politician [ Warren Hastings; Sir Philip Francis ]
Publication details: 
Duncra [ Lothian ]. 24 November 1806.
£180.00

3pp., 4to. In good condition, each of the two leaves in neatly-trimmed remains of a windowpane mount. Due to illness and the dissolution of parliament he is only now able to 'return the Manuscript you was so good as to send to me. I have carefully perused it immediately upon my return here. I have no alterations or observations to make upon it; the Narrative is clear and the compilation of facts judicious'.

[ Edward Falkener, architect and author. ] Autograph Letter Signed to fellow-architect William Tite

Author: 
Edward Falkener (1814-1896, pseud. 'E. F. O. Thurcastle'), architect and author [ Sir William Tite (1798-1873), architect and Member of Parliament; Sir John Soane's Museum ]
Publication details: 
10 Carlisle Parade, Hastings. 5 January 1861.
£150.00

4pp., 12mo. Bifolium. In good condition, on lightly-aged paper. On two occasions, despite the urgings of his friends, he has declined to apply for 'the Curatorship at Sir John Soanes', but he has since 'thought my friends might be right, and that the appointment would afford means of study and relaxation'. He has been 'over worked lately', and is 'suffering from boils and nervous headaches, which came on the very day I had intended to leave for Paris and Berlin'.

[ Edward Wedlake Brayley, topographer and archaeologist. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('Edw. W. Brayley') to the singer Thomas Philipps, regarding the sending in of a pianoforte for a recital at the Russell Institution, and 'Mr. Wornum'.

Author: 
Edward Wedlake Brayley (1773-1854), topographer and archaeologist, librarian and secretary of the Russell Institution, London [ Thomas Philipps (1774-1841), singer ]
Publication details: 
Russell Inst[itutio]n. [ 55 Great Coram Street, London ]. 24 April 1838.
£35.00

2pp., 4to. In fair condition, on lightly-aged paper. He asks him to 'delay sending in the Piano Forte until 1/2 past Five o Clock on Monday', as 'our General Annual Meeting of Proprietors takes place on that day, and very possibly they may not break up until Five, or a little after'. He asks him what tickets to 'send to Mr. Wornum', adding 'Whatever you think right shall be done for him'.

[ Elizabeth Benger, English author. ] Four Autograph Letters Signed (all 'E Benger'), two of them to John Thomas Smith of the British Museum, and two to his daughter.

Author: 
Elizabeth Benger [ Elizabeth Ogilvy Benger ] (1775-1827), English novelist, biographer and poet [ J. T. Smith [ John Thomas Smith ] (1766-1833), 'Antiquity Smith', Keeper of Prints, British Museum ]
Publication details: 
Three of the letters from 13 Warren Street [ London ]. All four undated.
£450.00

Four 16mo letters, three of them of one page, and the other of two pages. In good condition, on lightly-aged paper. In a crabbed hand. One addressed to 'J T Smith Esqre | British Museum', and another to 'J T Smith Esqre | 22 Carmarthen Street | an answer'. Little more than short notes. In one letter to J. T. Smith she asks him for 'Mr Vance's address, for a married gentleman', in the other she tells him that 'Mrs Martin of Liverpool, whose intimate friends are yours also, [...] wishes to be indebted to your obliging attention'.

[ Charles Kemble, actor. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('C. Kemble.') to C. R. Smith, correcting a mistake regarding the British Archaeological Association.

Author: 
Charles Kemble (1775-1854), English actor [ C. R. Smith [ Charles Roach Smith ] (1807-1890), antiquary and archaeologist; British Archaeological Association ]
Publication details: 
Athenaeum Club [ London ]. 27 August 1847.
£35.00

1p., 12mo. In good condition, on lightly-aged paper, with slight rust spotting around date at head. He explains that it is 'under a mistake' that he has been 'proposed as an Associate of the Central Committee of the British Archaeological Association', and he declines the 'honor intended' with 'sincere thanks'.

[ Thomas Keyworth, Congregational minister and author. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('Thos Keyworth') to George Offor, describing a circumstance relating to the use of tablets by children in 'our school'.

Author: 
Thomas Keyworth (1782-1852), author, Congregational minister, and philanthropist [ George Offor (1787-1864), literary editor and book collector
Publication details: 
[ Sleaford, Lincolnshire. ] No date [ 1840s? ].
£125.00

3pp., 4to. Addressed on reverse of second leaf to 'Mr Offor | NB Please to pay the Twopenny Postage of the Letter to 169 Fleet St & charge it in my account.' Docketted 'Mr Keyworth. | Sleaford'.

[ William Bowyer, London printer. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('W Bowyer') to 'Mr. Redknap', regarding a threatening letter from a creditor. With engraving of Bowyer by James Basire.

Author: 
William Bowyer (1699-1777), eminent London printer [ James Basire (c.1730-1802), engraver ]
Publication details: 
Letter dated 1 September 1758. [ Engraving published in London in 1812. ]
£180.00

Both items are in fair condition, lightly aged, with the letter inserted in a windowpane mount, and the engraving laid down on the recto of the second leaf of the bifolium of which the mount forms the first leaf. The letter is 1p., 4to., and addressed on the reverse 'To Mr. Redknap'. Written in a difficult hand, it concerns a threatening letter Bowyer has received, stating that the sender (whose name is indecipherable) 'will hardly stay so long without Money', considering that 'Mr. Miller is going to Bath, & will not return probably within a Month'. Bowyer 'wd.

[ Sir William Tite, architect. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('W Tite') to an unnamed recipient, regarding the unfitness of a 'young Friend' for an appointment.

Author: 
Sir William Tite (1798-1873), architect of the Royal Exchange, London
Publication details: 
Place not decipherable, on inverted letterhead of 17 St. Helen's Place, E.C. [ London ] 'Friday' [ no date ].
£40.00

2pp., 12mo. Bifolium. In good condition, lightly-aged. He does not think the recipient's 'young Friend' would stand much chance gaining 'the Appointment', but does not see why 'he should not try & make himself known'. He continues: 'We want an experienced Man up to all the workings of the Acts for compulsory Purchases & the Tricks of fradulent Claimants'. Tite is afrait that the 'young Friend has this unpleasant Part of his Profession yet to learn'. He concludes by stating that there is 'but little Chance of my being in London at the Election'.

[ Sir William Tite, architect. ] Autograph Note Signed ('William Tite') to J. Cole of Woodford.

Author: 
Sir William Tite (1798-1873), architect of the Royal Exchange, London
Publication details: 
London. 24 December 1845.
£35.00

1p., 12mo. In good condition, on lightly-aged paper, with traces of mount still adhering to reverse. From the context a response to a request for an autograph. Reads. 'Sir / | I beg to acknowledge the Receipt of your Letter & thus to answer it. | I am | Sir | Your obed Servant | William Tite'.

[ Sir William Tite, architect. ] Autograph Note Signed ('Will Tite') to fellow-architect Charles Harriot Smith, regarding work he is doing for him on the Royal Exchange, London. With Autograph Note by Smith's wife Fanny Smith.

Author: 
Sir William Tite (1798-1873), architect of the Royal Exchange, London [ Charles Harriot Smith (1792-1864), architect ]
Publication details: 
17 St Helen's Place [ London ]. 30 March 1843.
£180.00

1p., 12mo. Bifolium. In good condition, lightly-aged. Reads: 'Dear Sir / | I have made up my mind not to decorate the Cymatium of the Exchange Cornce & I have also certified £1080 for you to-day'. Addressed to Smith at 29 Clipstone Road. Smith's entry in the Oxford DNB states that he 'executed the ornamental stonecarving of the Royal Exchange, of the National Gallery, and of Dorchester and Bridgewater houses.

[ Sir Ashton Lever, natural history collector. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('Ashton Lever') to 'Mr. Harrop', regarding a plan to send 'a Cargo of Potatoes' to 'our brave friends at Gibraltar'.

Author: 
Sir Ashton Lever (1729-1788) of Alkrington Hall, Rochdale, Lancashire, natural history collector [ The Great Siege of Gibraltar, 1779-1783 ]
Publication details: 
'Alkrington' [ Alkrington Hall, Rochdale, Lancashire ]. 20 October 1782.
£200.00

1p., landscape 8vo. On aged and worn paper, with a couple of light ink stains. A small cutting carrying a biography of Lever is laid down at bottom left. His 'intention relative to sending a Cargo of Potatoes to our brave friends at Gibraltar' has not met with the support he expected, so he is forced to 'give up the plan, the Subscription being no way adequate to the expence that would attend'. He asks Harrop to insert the list of subscribers in his newspaper, and to 'return those Gentlemen their Subscription with my best Compliments'.

[ Lord Grenville, prime minister. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('G.') to 'My dear Charles', stating the British Government's position with regard to the French Revolution and Duke of Orleans, and with reference to a letter from 'Mr. Croker'.

Author: 
Lord Grenville [ William Wyndham Grenville, Baron Grenville ] (1759-1834), Whig prime minister [ John Wilson Croker (1780-1857), Tory politician and writer ]
Publication details: 
Dropmore. 27 May 1823.
£220.00

3pp., 12mo. In good condition, lightly-aged, neatly cut out of a windowpane mount. A 'slight return' of his 'complaint' has disqualified him from all attention to business, or he would 'gladly have availed myself of the opportunity which Mr Croker's letter seemed to offer, to enter into some details upon the subject, which I should not be sorry to leave behind me - and I still hope to do so when health & strength return as I trust they will'.

[ Louis de Rougemont, 'colonial Munchausen' in Australia. ] Autograph Letter Signed to Sub-Lieutenant Sidney R. Conson, RN.

Author: 
Louis de Rougemont [ born Henri Louis Grin ] (1847-1921), hoaxer, 'colonial Munchausen' claiming adventures in Australia
Publication details: 
13 Bloomsbury Street, London W.C. 19 April 1899.
£180.00

1p., 12mo. In good condition. He thanks him for his 'very kind note', but regrets that 'owing to my being engaged on a lecturing tour for some time to come I am at present unable to fix a date to avail myself of your invitation'. He hopes to be able to do so when 'free from my appointments'. For information on de Rougemont', see B. G. Andrews's entry on him in the Dictionary of Australian Biography. Born in Switzerland, at around the age of sixteen 'he became a footman to the actress Fanny Kemble, touring extensively and learning fluent English.

[ Renn Dickson Hampden, Regius Professor of Divinity at Oxford. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('R. D. Hampden') to the London publisher Richard Bentley, responding to an invitation to write

Author: 
Renn Dickson Hampden (1793-1868), Regius Professor of Divinity at Oxford and Bishop of Hereford, subject of the Hampden Controversy of 1836 [ Richard Bentley (1794-1871), London publisher ]
Publication details: 
Ewelme Rectory. 21 July 1846.
£56.00

3pp., 12mo. Bifolium. In good condition. Addressed to 'R. Bentley Esq'. Having explained that the delay in replying is due to his absence from Oxford during the vacation, he turns to Bentley's proposal. 'I am much flattered by your applying to me, under the high recommendation which you state, for the work in question. And I cannot but admire your spirit in desiring that a work of that kind should go forth to the world under your auspices.

[ John Percival, Bishop of Hereford. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('J Hereford') to 'Miss Rawnsley', on the death in the First World War of his son Lt-Col. A. J. B. Percival, Northumberland Fusiliers.

Author: 
John Percival (1834-1918), Headmaster of Rugby School and Bishop of Hereford [ Lieut-Col. Arthur Jex Blake Percival (1871-1914), Northumberland Fusiliers ]
Publication details: 
On letterhead of The Palace, Hereford. 30 November 1914.
£45.00

2pp., 12mo. Bifolium with mourning border. He thanks her for 'sending the soldier's letter', adding: 'Arthur had a wonderful gift for attaching me to him, & his death leaves a sad blank in my life.'

[ James Atlay, Bishop of Hereford. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('J. Hereford') to 'Bateman', on the evils of 'excessive smoking', and giving a bon mot by Archbishop Magee.

Author: 
James Atlay (1817-1894), Bishop of Hereford [ William Connor Magee (1821-1891), Archbishop of York ]
Publication details: 
Oxton Hall, Tadcaster, on cancelled letterhead of The Palace, Hereford. 30 September 1892.
£45.00

4pp., 12mo. Bifolium. In good condition, lightly aged and worn. He begins by stating that, as he takes the Eagle newspaper, he has 'seen your poem & Bowling's version', before continuing: 'The only comfort that I can find in the smoling - excessive smoking - of the present day is that the Tobacco is less disagreeable and (I hope) less noxious than the weed of my youth'. He is not himself a smoker, 'but my boys smoke, to excess I think'.

[ George Edmund Street, architect. ] Autograph Letter Signed to Rev. Sidney Pelham, regarding the restoration of his Norwich church, St Peter Mancroft.

Author: 
George Edmund Street (1824-1881), 'High Victorian' architect and architectural theorist [ Rev. Sidney Pelham (1849-1926), Vicar of St Peter Mancroft, Norwich, and Canon of Norwich Cathedral ]
Publication details: 
No place. 13 July 1880.
£65.00

4pp., 4to. Bifolium. In good condition, on lightly aged and worn paper, with thin trace of stub adhering to one edge. An interesting letter, giving an insight into the practicalities of Victorian church restoration. The letter begins: 'My impression was that I had advised your Committee by word of mouth about repairing the stonework. In restoration of old decayed stonework as it is impossible to describe in any specification every stone that requires renewal, it is always certain that some amount of misconception will arise between yr Cont[racto]r.

[ George Isaac Huntingford, as Bishop of Hereford. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('G. I. Hereford') to 'Mr. Hayter', arguing against 'the extreme Impropriety' of what he sees as a liturgical innovation.

Author: 
George Isaac Huntingford (1748-1832), Warden of Winchester College, and successively Bishop of Gloucester and Bishop of Hereford
Publication details: 
No place. 20 October 1823.
£120.00

1p., 8vo. 23 lines of text. In fair condition, slightly aged and worn, with some repair with archival tape. Offering an interesting insight into everyday ecclesiastical management in Regency England. The letter begins: 'I cannot find, what I once sent to you as having been well educated, a printed paper. The purport of it was to shew the extreme Impropriety of laying a stress on the word "Us", in the sentence "Lord have mercy upon Us".

[ George Isaac Huntingford, Warden of Winchester College and Bishop of Hereford. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('G. I. Huntingford') to an unnamed recipient

Author: 
George Isaac Huntingford (1748-1832), Warden of Winchester College, and successively Bishop of Gloucester and Bishop of Hereford
Publication details: 
'W. C. [ i.e. Winchester College ]'. 16 February 1818.
£65.00

1p., 4to. In fair condition, on lightly aged and worn paper, with slight damage on removal from mount and traces of tape adhering. He has been referred to 'the Oldest Table of Fees' by 'Mr. Lane', and quotes information from the table given by Lane. He asks the recipient to 'search the Proper Office; send me a Copy of such Certificate; & of Any Proceedings had in consequence of it'.

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