On 26 July 1909, Henry James writes to Frederick Macmillan to enlist his publisher-friend's help in a delicate matter. James indicates his wish to direct the then sizeable sum of £100 discreetly to his ‘accomplished and greatly valued friend of many years Morton Fullerton’, explaining that he know[s] something ― a good deal, of his personal and family situation, and especially of the financially depleting effect on him, lately aggravated, of the condition of his father, ill and helpless these many years in the US, and to whom he has had constantly to render assistance' (HJL, iv, 529). Since Fullerton, the head of the Paris bureau of the (London) Times, has just been invited by the firm of Macmillan to write a book on the French capital, it strikes James' as not unlikely that he may have to write and ask for some advance on the money he is to receive from you, for getting more clear and free for work at his book'. James wonders whether Macmillan would at that point be willing to send [the £100] to him, as a favour to me, as from yourselves (independently of anything you may yourselves send him?) and with no mention whatever, naturally, of my name in the matter?'
At first sight, Jame's letter offers touching testimony to a magnanimous impulse. Here, we might say, is the sixty-six-year-old James applying, in duly circumspect fashion, such pecuniary and social clout as he has by now attained to the altruistic cause of enabling a younger friend to devote himself to his writing.