The Collected Works of Jeremy Bentham

Correspondence: Volume 7: January 1802 to December 1808
Dinwiddy, J.R.
Rosen, F.
Date published: 
May 1988

This is the seventh volume of Bentham's Correspondence, and nearly three-quarters of the letters included in it have not been published before. In 1802 Bentham started to acquire an international reputation through the publication of his Traites de legislation civile et penale. The correspondence contains information about the numerous last-minute revisions which Bentham suggested, about early reactions to the work, and about its translation into Russian. When, in 1802 - 3, Bentham failed in his attempt to get his Panop ticon penitentiary project implemented by the government, he turned his attention to adjective law, writing extensively about evidence and procedure, and in 1808 he published a substantial pamphlet on the reform of the Scottish judicature. Exchanges of letters with Sir Samuel Romilly, Francis Horner and others throw some light on the composition of these works and also illuminate aspects of his personal life: his relationships with his brother Samuel, with his Genevan editor Etienne Dumont, with Lord Holland's sister Caroline Fox, to whom he proposed marriage in 1805, and with Aaron Burr, adventurer and former vice-president of the United States, who formed a close friendship with him in 1808.


This is the seventh volume of Bentham's Correspondence, and offers insights into works completed between 1802 and 1808, including tracts on penal reform which gave him an international reputation. The letters also illuminate aspects of his personal life.