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In November 1815 James reported that John Evans, another of Moira's agents, had told James that if land did not take "a more favourable turn," he would not give "ten pounds for the Bond I hold of his Lordship's" (mssHA 7601).
Moira's financial affairs, long critical, were, as James put it on 28 November 1815, approaching "an eclat which might hurt many well disposed persons" (mssHA 7602).
On 30 November the eclat came closer when John Evans learned that prospective purchasers of property owned by Moira in Leicestershire had withdrawn on the ground that Moira had failed to disclose 30,000 [pounds sterling] of unredeemed mortgages and therefore could not deliver good title (mssHA 12819).
On 6 December 1815 James wrote to John Evans that "the Bank at Alton [Austen & Gray] was in the Gazette last night" (mssHA 7605).
Clearly the insolvency of Henry Austen's Alton bank meant a good deal more to James than it did to John Evans, who somewhat peevishly replied on 9 December that he regretted "that the Bank at Alton should have failed but that can make no difference" (mssHA 2730), which is to say no difference in the greater disaster of Moira's affairs.
On 18 December James noted of one such that he "never saw or spoke to this Bill Holder in my life" (mssHA 8391), and on Christmas morning James wrote to Evans that he could not show the latter's last letter to Henry Austen because "it evidently contains a threat" (mssHA 7609).
This was Jane's brother Edward Knight, and his first letter, dated 22 July 1823 from "Chawton House, Alton, Hants." (mssHA 8083) speaks for itself:
(mssHA 8084) If the Marquess of Hastings ever read Edward's two letters he certainly did nothing about them.
1100-1892 (bulk 1560-1830)," which are hereafter referred to, following Huntington practice, as "mssHA" with the relevant folio number.
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