Single Letter

HAM/1/19/60

Letter from William 7th Lord Napier

Diplomatic Text


38th-
Going on a
visit

                                                         X      38th-

Edinburgh Feby 18th 1774

      Once more My dear Ward I have got
home from a Pilgrimage round all
my fifeteen friends which has lasted
above a Month & as I never stayed long
in one place I did not get yours of
the 16th- of last month till I came Home
Yesterday which will I hope excuse
my long ʃilence -- Indeed My dear Mary
I am extremely ʃorry that my last but
one made you so uneasy, if you had
known my anxiety (when I wrote it)
for you, You would have pitied me
If you remember the words you wrote
you will at once forgive me for taking
up the ʃubject as I did, as nothing leʃs
could enter my Head than that you
had certainly made a Marriage that
you was ashamed of and conʃidering
my Friendship for you in what a Situation
would ʃuch a thing have thrown both



of us, as well as your Mamma & the rist of
your friends & conʃidering the good opinion
we all have of your good ʃence, prudence,
& knowledge if such a thing happened
You, where then could we have ever after
put confidence in a Young Lady, for my
part I freely tell you I never would have
again trusted to the discretion of any of the
Sex & should have been of opinion for the
future that it was quite needleʃs to give
them any Education further than what
nature had given them but let me drop
the ʃubject & pride in my own Judgement
that Miʃs Hamiltons conduct will always
thro Life give her friends the highest
opinion of her good ʃense and an example
to all the Young Ladies of her acquaintance
      We are very happy that we did not hear
of your ilneʃs till you was better & that the
riding has entirely reestablished Your
health be aʃsured you have no friends that



wishes it more then we do, but as your
time for your London jaunt is either now
or drawing on I beg you'll remember that
of all the Bleʃsings we enjoy in this World
none is to be compared to Health but
most young people like you in the Bloom
of Age forgets that a very little thing to
our thinking may ruin it for ever a
cold is often thought nothing by the Gay
but nothing is worse if not taken care
off however as I dont imagine you will
run into all the diʃsipation of the toun I
have leʃs fear of you than of any Young
Lady of my acquaintance. I am glad Mrs-
Hamilton is to have an agreeable Lady with
her during your absence tho I dont be=
=lieve
it will make up for the want of
her Marys saucineʃs which she knows
so well how to throw in when she wants
to make good her point. Believe me
I am all impatience for a letter from



London with all those ʃenʃible observations
that I know you are not only capable
of making but that your genius will
lead you to make & I flatter myself that
I will be trusted with them and that your
confidence in me will be greater than
it ʃome times has been. -- Miʃs P------
to be married (& your friend O Mary, Mary,
that wont go down with me) I am glad
of it, its the most ʃensible thing a young
Lady can do, when done with propriety,[1] as
its taking a friend, a Confident, a Protector
and a Husband to make those days that
is allotted to her in this Life to paʃs agree
=ably
, I dont know Col. O------ but I hope
for her sake he is a good Man, apropos
to her family How does Fanchon? Cloe, &
Fairy not one word of any of them
Adieu My dearest girl May God bliʃs you & make
you happy & believe us with great sincerity yr-
best friends & remember us all to Mrs
Hamilton, this is short but I want matter at present. --

(hover over blue text or annotations for clarification;
red text is normalised and/or unformatted in other panel)


Notes


 1. The underlining of this word is dashed rather than continuous.

Normalised Text




                                                              

Edinburgh February 18th 1774

      Once more My dear Ward I have got
home from a Pilgrimage round all
my fifteen friends which has lasted
above a Month & as I never stayed long
in one place I did not get yours of
the 16th- of last month till I came Home
Yesterday which will I hope excuse
my long silence -- Indeed My dear Mary
I am extremely sorry that my last but
one made you so uneasy, if you had
known my anxiety (when I wrote it)
for you, You would have pitied me
If you remember the words you wrote
you will at once forgive me for taking
up the subject as I did, as nothing less
could enter my Head than that you
had certainly made a Marriage that
you was ashamed of and considering
my Friendship for you in what a Situation
would such a thing have thrown both



of us, as well as your Mamma & the rest of
your friends & considering the good opinion
we all have of your good sense, prudence,
& knowledge if such a thing happened
You, where then could we have ever after
put confidence in a Young Lady, for my
part I freely tell you I never would have
again trusted to the discretion of any of the
Sex & should have been of opinion for the
future that it was quite needless to give
them any Education further than what
nature had given them but let me drop
the subject & pride in my own Judgement
that Miss Hamiltons conduct will always
through Life give her friends the highest
opinion of her good sense and an example
to all the Young Ladies of her acquaintance
      We are very happy that we did not hear
of your ilness till you was better & that the
riding has entirely reestablished Your
health be assured you have no friends that



wishes it more than we do, but as your
time for your London jaunt is either now
or drawing on I beg you'll remember that
of all the Blessings we enjoy in this World
none is to be compared to Health but
most young people like you in the Bloom
of Age forgets that a very little thing to
our thinking may ruin it for ever a
cold is often thought nothing by the Gay
but nothing is worse if not taken care
of however as I don't imagine you will
run into all the dissipation of the town I
have less fear of you than of any Young
Lady of my acquaintance. I am glad Mrs-
Hamilton is to have an agreeable Lady with
her during your absence though I don't believe
it will make up for the want of
her Marys sauciness which she knows
so well how to throw in when she wants
to make good her point. Believe me
I am all impatience for a letter from



London with all those sensible observations
that I know you are not only capable
of making but that your genius will
lead you to make & I flatter myself that
I will be trusted with them and that your
confidence in me will be greater than
it some times has been. -- Miss P
to be married (& your friend O Mary, Mary,
that won't go down with me) I am glad
of it, its the most sensible thing a young
Lady can do, when done with propriety, as
its taking a friend, a Confident, a Protector
and a Husband to make those days that
is allotted to her in this Life to pass agreeably
, I don't know Colonel O but I hope
for her sake he is a good Man, apropos
to her family How does Fanchon? Cloe, &
Fairy not one word of any of them
Adieu My dearest girl May God bless you & make
you happy & believe us with great sincerity your
best friends & remember us all to Mrs
Hamilton, this is short but I want matter at present. --

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 1. The underlining of this word is dashed rather than continuous.

Metadata

Library References

Repository: The John Rylands Library, University of Manchester

Archive: Mary Hamilton Papers

Item title: Letter from William 7th Lord Napier

Shelfmark: HAM/1/19/60

Correspondence Details

Author: William, 7th Lord Napier

Place sent: Edinburgh

Addressee: Mary Hamilton

Place received: Northampton (certainty: medium)

Date sent: 18 February 1774

Letter Description

Summary: Letter from William Napier, 7th Lord Napier, to Mary Hamilton. He has returned home from a 'Pilgrimage' around his fifteen friends which lasted about a month, as he never stayed long in one place. He is sorry that an earlier letter of his made her uneasy, but if she knew the anxiety he felt on her account, she would have pitied him. After reading her words, he could do nothing but write as he did. He could think of 'nothing less [...] than that you had certainly made a Marriage that you was ashamed of', and if such a thing were true, how this would have affected Hamilton's mother and friends. With an attempt at humour, Napier writes that, with such goodness and prudence that Hamilton has, for such a thing to happen 'where then could we have ever after put confidence in a Young Lady, for my part I freely tell you I never would have again trusted to the discretion of any of the Sex', and would have thought that education was useless to them 'further than what nature had given them'. Napier continues that Hamilton has the high opinion of all her friends and is an 'example to all the Young Ladies of her acquaintance'.
    Moving on, Napier writes of Hamilton's continuation with riding and of the good effect that this has had on her health. Hamilton is to visit London soon and Napier notes that he does not expect her to 'run into all the dissipation of the to[w]n' and that he has less fear for her than for any other young woman of his acquaintance. He is glad that her mother will have an agreeable companion with her while Hamilton is away, though he does not believe that this 'will make up for the want of her Marys [sic] sauciness which she knows so well how to throw in when she wants to make good her point'.
    Dated at Edinburgh.
   

Length: 1 sheet, 674 words

Transliteration Information

Editorial declaration: First edited in the project 'Image to Text' (David Denison & Nuria Yáñez-Bouza, 2013-2019), now incorporated in the project 'Unlocking the Mary Hamilton Papers' (Hannah Barker, Sophie Coulombeau, David Denison, Tino Oudesluijs, Cassandra Ulph, Christine Wallis & Nuria Yáñez-Bouza, 2019-2022).

All quotation marks are retained in the text and are represented by appropriate Unicode characters. Words split across two lines may have a hyphen on the first, the second or both fragments (reco-|ver, imperfect|-ly, satisfacti-|-on); or a double hyphen (pur=|port, dan|=ger, qua=|=litys); or none (respect|ing). Any point in abbreviations with superscripted letter(s) is placed last, regardless of relative left-right orientation in the original. Thus, Mrs. or Mrs may occur, but M.rs or Mr.s do not.

Acknowledgements: XML version: Research Assistant funding in 2017/18 provided by Department of Linguistics and English Language, University of Manchester.

Research assistant: Georgia Tutt, MA student, University of Manchester

Transliterator: Ana Olveira Mariño, undergraduate student, University of Manchester (submitted May 2018)

Cataloguer: Lisa Crawley, Archivist, The John Rylands Library

Cataloguer: John Hodgson, Head of Special Collections, The John Rylands Library

Copyright: Transcriptions, notes and TEI/XML © the editors

Revision date: 3 August 2020

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