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PULTNEY, William, 1st Earl of Bath (1684–1764)

The negotiators. Or, Don Diego brought to reason . An excellent new ballad. Tune of Packington’s pound

London: Printed for R. Thompson 'Price Sixpence' after imprint, 1738
Folio: A–B2, 4 leaves, pp. [5] 6–7 [1] (last page blank). Woodcut or metal-cut decoration on title and headpiece on p. [5], large woodcut on verso of age 1.
Condition: 330 x 200mm. Previously folded and with small holes and tears along folds, touching a few letters but without significant loss, woodcut frontispiece strengthened on verso, some light dustsoiling.
Binding: Twentieth-century quarter roan over mabled boards. Rubbed.
First edition. The poem was also printed in A new miscellany, 8vo, 1738.
Bibliography: ESTC T39749; Foxon N18.

A satire on Sir Robert Walpole's ultimately unsuccessful negotiations with Spain, the failure of which led to the war with Spain declared in 1739 – the War of Jenkins’ ear – which lasted until 1748. Don Diego is Sir Thomas FitzGerald, the Spanish envoy. Under the treaty of Utrecht in 1713, Britain was given the right to supply an unlimited number of slaves to the Spanish colonies as well as 500 tons of goods per year. In the Treaty of Seville of 1729, Spanish warships were given the right to stop British traders to ensure that this right was not abused. When they began to board British ships and confiscate their cargoes, anti-Spanish feelings grew too strong for Walpole, weakend by political opposition, to resist.
The striking woodcut frontispiece shows a lion holding a sceptre having his tail held by a man, with a carriage being pulled by three men who are being whipped.
ESTC T039749 notes ‘This impression has “(Price Sixpence.)” on the titlepage’. The other ESTC record, N64978 (University of Cincinnati only) gives no pagination and makes no comment about the price statement.
Keywords:     poetry