Single Letter

HAM/1/2/47

Letter from John Dickenson to Mary Hamilton

Diplomatic Text


In a Work intitled a Sketch of the Denominations of the Christian World it says
"The Socinians have appropriated to themselves the appellation of Unitarians;
& by this Name they are now more generally distinguished -- Though to this Appel
ation
they have no exclusive Claim, yet it is somewhat more correctly descriptive
of their Religious Tenets than that of Socinians -- since they renounce many of the
Opinions of Socinians"
[1]

Monday 6 Sepr. as soon as my letter was dispatched James & I took
advantage of a fair Gleam midst the Showers & set out to ride on the new
road that is making ------ Dulverton about 5 miles from hence -- We had
previously sent off a little trunk containing some linnen &c to Exeter
to be in readineʃs for us on our little excursion & by the post James recd. a
Letter to inform him that two of the Paynters were coming here this
Evg -- which of course deranges our plan -- but the Linnen is gone -- We
were particularly lucky in our ride as we avoided the heavy Showers
& only had a very slight one James took shelter in a Stable I had the
precaution to take a great Coat & set the Shower at defiance under a
hedge -- The road is not yet cut thro & a few places for short
distances remain to be levelled -- it paʃses thro this beautiful
Vale -- We had some Conversation with an Undertaker who
told us that he had engaged to level 4 miles at 17/6 per Yard
wch. amounts to 1540£ pr Mile & he said that Fencing & Stoning
would exceed that proportion -- therefore the Road will cost more
than 3000£ per Mile -- We rode thro Dulverton -- Col. Thornton
the celebrated Man -- has bought a House & the great Tithes of the
Parish that belonged to Mrs. Lupmore -- He is very much disliked
here & the Gentn. of the Country have refused to admit him a member
of the Stag Hunt -- he consoles himself by giving elegant dinners
wh. Champaine &c to people of a Description who will visit him --
I observed on the Gate leading to the House a pair of magnificent
Stags Horns -- About a mile from Dulverton is Pixton a Seat
of Lord Caernarvons[2] -- the House is small, new & situated in the
middle of romantic Park commanding a beautiful View of the Neigh



borhood & of two fine Oak Woods, one on each side of the Vale in which is a
very large Hernery[3] -- At this Season the Birds are marauding in
different parts of the Kingdom & return here to breed at the normal
Season -- Lord Caernarvon is represented to be inconsoleable for the
loʃs of his Wife[4] who died lately & left 5 or 6 Children -- She was Sister
to present Sir -- Ackland[5] -- She was going to Ramsgate & died at
an Inn on the road very unexpectedly -- in spite of the Devonr. roads
we had a pleasant ride -- About 9 OClock the Mr. Paynters
arrived, unfortunately they mistook their way & came up & down
two of the most celebrated Hills in this Neighborhood, one is called
Hang Mans Hill & I believe is nearly perpendicular & in a one Horse
Chaise with a restive Horse -- One of the Brothers, the one you
saw in Town -- lately broke a blood Veʃsel & rode 30 miles after it & in
consequence has been ill ever since -- he is now pronounced to have an absceʃs
on his Lungs -- Since his first Attack he was driving out his Father
in a Gig & going at a great rate in their Own Grounds. one Wheel hit
against a Stump & the old Man being very heavy, overbalanced the
Vehicle & over they went & the old Man's Nose was broken & he was
much bruised. the Son afterwards spit blood -- he was advised to try
change of Air & as a younger brother was going to Exeter to be ordained
he attended him & after the Ordination they came in here -- the oldest
was so agitated by his exertions in driving / the younger not seeing
3 Inches from his Nose / that he was in a violent perspiration when
he came into the house, & persevered in sitting in the Hall on a Flag Floor
as he could not bear the heat of a Room -- He seems to be in a sad way
& will be a great Loʃs to his Family as he is very clever & is the Active
Manager in the busineʃs -- his Father is Auditor to many Men of
large fortune in Cornwall & gets 3000£ a Year by that part of the busineʃs
I apprehend this young Man will never partake of Xmas fare --
After breakfast Mrs. P. advised me to sit in the Library where she followed
me & we have had a long Case on family Affairs -- She says She believes my
Sister Elizabeth is married to a Frenchman -- That She has attributed



a Continuance of her Fathers discountenance entirely to the interference
of poor Sarah, on whom she has been very severe in her AdmiAnimadversions
& that of course people abroad naturally gave credit to her aʃsertions & many
relieved her Neceʃsities -- That her Children, except the oldest were totally
uneducated & She herself had been many Years a Roman Catholic --
Mrs. Hay who married a Cornish Gentleman & was some time Shaples
saw a great deal of the Palombi's & gave & lent them money -- It is
curious & mortifying that so proud a Woman as She was shd. have been guilty
of such a meaneʃs as to put herself on the footing of a pauper rather than inform
her family of her real Situation -- I begged her to inform me of her real situation
& I promised to lay it before my Father --      Mrs. P. told me Miʃs Tickel's
Father devoted most of time to reading -- One day Mrs. T. said to him she wished
She kould be turned into a book & then she should have
more of his company, he said he should be glad of it provided
She becomes an Almanack & then he shd. throw her aside at
the end of the Year -- There are a set a Savages that are employed in
making the new Road who are Strangers & earn prodigious Wages & live
in on extraordinary eating raw bacon & undreʃsed meat & drinking such
Quantities of liquor as is scarce credible -- One of these fellows was married
here lately by Mr. Dayvy -- when he came to that part of the Service where the
Man promises to take Care of his Wife "in Sickneʃs or in health". he said
to Mr. D. "hold I have not agreed to that" & would not go on till urged
by the Fair One -- Afterwards he said -- "Parson this is a long job, I wish
you'd stop & lets have an end on't" -- These Men will earn 12/6 day
/The common native laborers get six/ and eat & drink it all -- I see
here 4 Vol. of Burney's History of Music -- I pitched upon 2 Vol. of Junius[6]
a beautiful Type bound in Vellum, just as these were ordered by
Junius wch. Mr. P. bought of a Mr Herne -- I felt surprised for a Mo-
ment
, but on examination they were printed by Beasley in 94 -- The
Vignettes to ye Hy of Music are beautiful -- drawn by Cipriani & engraved by
Bartolozzi[7] -- Whilst Mrs. P. & I were talking I observed a Hill at a distance
covered with Air of prismatic Colors -- the green preponderating -- This
paʃsed off and was succeeded by another Cloud with more Vivid Colors. we
called the young folks but before they arrived it vanished, a Third vapour
came but the Colors were not as bright -- The Sun Shone upon the hill & a
watery Cloud was paʃsing over it -- I once saw a Valley 7 miles long & 1 broad



near Taxal filled with prismatic Air & saw every Object colored with all the varied
of the Rainbow -- & I was glad to see a similar effect produced by the same Cause & wch
can only be seen in hilly Countries --

                            


Wednesday -- The old Lady has not brought any letter & I believe shes
not made her appearance & as Mr. Paynters are going thro Tiverton I will
send this by them -- The Wind is come round to the North & the weather is
promising there fore we have fixed to go to Exeter tomorrow & be there by
3 OClock to hear the finest Organ in the Kingdom --
                                                         Adieu Most Affy Yrs
J.D.

Davy Sir Humphreys Father was a Carver of Chimney pieces & his
Mother was a Milliner


Sepbr. 1813[8]


                                                         Single
To[9]
Mrs. Dickenson
32 Devonshire Place
London[10]

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


Notes


 1. The relevance of this passage to the body of the letter remains to be established.
 2. Colonel Henry George Herbert, 2nd Earl of Carnarvon (1772-1833), politician, husband to Elizabeth Kitty Acland.
 3. An alternative form of the word heronry (OED).
 4. Elizabeth Kitty Acland (1772-1813), sister of Sir John Dyke Acland, 8th Baronet.
 5. Sir John Dyke Acland (1778-1785), 8th Baronet, who died in childhood a few weeks after inheriting the title and estates of his grandfather.
 6. The anonymous Letters of Junius, first published 1772.
 7. Francesco Bartolozzi (1727-1815), an Italian engraver.
 8. Moved date here from centre of p.3, above address panel when unfolded.
 9. Postmarks 'COLLUMPTON' [now written Cullompton (Wikipedia), Devon] and 'C 11 SE 11 1813' to left of address panel when unfolded.
 10. Moved address panel here from centre of p.3 when unfolded, written vertically.

Normalised Text


In a Work entitled a Sketch of the Denominations of the Christian World it says
"The Socinians have appropriated to themselves the appellation of Unitarians;
& by this Name they are now more generally distinguished -- Though to this Appellation
they have no exclusive Claim, yet it is somewhat more correctly descriptive
of their Religious Tenets than that of Socinians -- since they renounce many of the
Opinions of Socinians"


Monday 6 September as soon as my letter was dispatched James & I took
advantage of a fair Gleam midst the Showers & set out to ride on the new
road that is making ------ Dulverton about 5 miles from hence -- We had
previously sent off a little trunk containing some linen &c to Exeter
to be in readiness for us on our little excursion & by the post James received a
Letter to inform him that two of the Paynters were coming here this
Evening -- which of course deranges our plan -- but the Linen is gone -- We
were particularly lucky in our ride as we avoided the heavy Showers
& only had a very slight one James took shelter in a Stable I had the
precaution to take a great Coat & set the Shower at defiance under a
hedge -- The road is not yet cut through & a few places for short
distances remain to be levelled -- it passes through this beautiful
Vale -- We had some Conversation with an Undertaker who
told us that he had engaged to level 4 miles at 17/6 per Yard
which amounts to 1540£ per Mile & he said that Fencing & Stoning
would exceed that proportion -- therefore the Road will cost more
than 3000£ per Mile -- We rode through Dulverton -- Colonel Thornton
the celebrated Man -- has bought a House & the great Tithes of the
Parish that belonged to Mrs. Lupmore -- He is very much disliked
here & the Gentlemen of the Country have refused to admit him a member
of the Stag Hunt -- he consoles himself by giving elegant dinners
with Champagne &c to people of a Description who will visit him --
I observed on the Gate leading to the House a pair of magnificent
Stags Horns -- About a mile from Dulverton is Pixton a Seat
of Lord Caernarvons -- the House is small, new & situated in the
middle of romantic Park commanding a beautiful View of the Neighborhood



& of two fine Oak Woods, one on each side of the Vale in which is a
very large Hernery -- At this Season the Birds are marauding in
different parts of the Kingdom & return here to breed at the normal
Season -- Lord Caernarvon is represented to be inconsoleable for the
loss of his Wife who died lately & left 5 or 6 Children -- She was Sister
to present Sir -- Ackland -- She was going to Ramsgate & died at
an Inn on the road very unexpectedly -- in spite of the Devonshire roads
we had a pleasant ride -- About 9 OClock the Mr. Paynters
arrived, unfortunately they mistook their way & came up & down
two of the most celebrated Hills in this Neighborhood, one is called
Hang Mans Hill & I believe is nearly perpendicular & in a one Horse
Chaise with a restive Horse -- One of the Brothers, the one you
saw in Town -- lately broke a blood Vessel & rode 30 miles after it & in
consequence has been ill ever since -- he is now pronounced to have an abscess
on his Lungs -- Since his first Attack he was driving out his Father
in a Gig & going at a great rate in their Own Grounds. one Wheel hit
against a Stump & the old Man being very heavy, overbalanced the
Vehicle & over they went & the old Man's Nose was broken & he was
much bruised. the Son afterwards spit blood -- he was advised to try
change of Air & as a younger brother was going to Exeter to be ordained
he attended him & after the Ordination they came in here -- the oldest
was so agitated by his exertions in driving / the younger not seeing
3 Inches from his Nose / that he was in a violent perspiration when
he came into the house, & persevered in sitting in the Hall on a Flag Floor
as he could not bear the heat of a Room -- He seems to be in a sad way
& will be a great Loss to his Family as he is very clever & is the Active
Manager in the business -- his Father is Auditor to many Men of
large fortune in Cornwall & gets 3000£ a Year by that part of the business
I apprehend this young Man will never partake of Christmas fare --
After breakfast Mrs. Perkin advised me to sit in the Library where she followed
me & we have had a long Case on family Affairs -- She says She believes my
Sister Elizabeth is married to a Frenchman -- That She has attributed



a Continuance of her Fathers discountenance entirely to the interference
of poor Sarah, on whom she has been very severe in her Animadversions
& that of course people abroad naturally gave credit to her assertions & many
relieved her Necessities -- That her Children, except the oldest were totally
uneducated & She herself had been many Years a Roman Catholic --
Mrs. Hay who married a Cornish Gentleman & was some time Shaples
saw a great deal of the Palombi's & gave & lent them money -- It is
curious & mortifying that so proud a Woman as She was should have been guilty
of such a meanness as to put herself on the footing of a pauper rather than inform
her family of her real Situation -- I begged her to inform me of her real situation
& I promised to lay it before my Father --      Mrs. Perkin told me Miss Tickel's
Father devoted most of time to reading -- One day Mrs. Tickel said to him she wished
She could be turned into a book & then she should have
more of his company, he said he should be glad of it provided
She becomes an Almanac & then he should throw her aside at
the end of the Year -- There are a set a Savages that are employed in
making the new Road who are Strangers & earn prodigious Wages & live
in on extraordinary eating raw bacon & undressed meat & drinking such
Quantities of liquor as is scarce credible -- One of these fellows was married
here lately by Mr. Dayvy -- when he came to that part of the Service where the
Man promises to take Care of his Wife "in Sickness or in health". he said
to Mr. Dayvy "hold I have not agreed to that" & would not go on till urged
by the Fair One -- Afterwards he said -- "Parson this is a long job, I wish
you'd stop & lets have an end on't" -- These Men will earn 12/6 day
/The common native laborers get six/ and eat & drink it all -- I see
here 4 Volumes of Burney's History of Music -- I pitched upon 2 Volumes of Junius
a beautiful Type bound in Vellum, just as these were ordered by
Junius which Mr. Perkin bought of a Mr Herne -- I felt surprised for a Moment
, but on examination they were printed by Beasley in 94 -- The
Vignettes to the History of Music are beautiful -- drawn by Cipriani & engraved by
Bartolozzi -- Whilst Mrs. Perkin & I were talking I observed a Hill at a distance
covered with Air of prismatic Colors -- the green preponderating -- This
passed off and was succeeded by another Cloud with more Vivid Colors. we
called the young folks but before they arrived it vanished, a Third vapour
came but the Colors were not as bright -- The Sun Shone upon the hill & a
watery Cloud was passing over it -- I once saw a Valley 7 miles long & 1 broad



near Taxal filled with prismatic Air & saw every Object colored with all the varied
of the Rainbow -- & I was glad to see a similar effect produced by the same Cause & which
can only be seen in hilly Countries --

                            


Wednesday -- The old Lady has not brought any letter & I believe shes
not made her appearance & as Mr. Paynters are going through Tiverton I will
send this by them -- The Wind is come round to the North & the weather is
promising there fore we have fixed to go to Exeter tomorrow & be there by
3 OClock to hear the finest Organ in the Kingdom --
                                                         Adieu Most Affectionately Yours
John Dickenson

Davy Sir Humphreys Father was a Carver of Chimney pieces & his
Mother was a Milliner





                                                         Single
To
Mrs. Dickenson
32 Devonshire Place
London

(consult diplomatic text or XML for annotations, deletions, clarifications,
quotations,
spellings, uncorrected forms, split words, abbreviations, formatting)



 1. The relevance of this passage to the body of the letter remains to be established.
 2. Colonel Henry George Herbert, 2nd Earl of Carnarvon (1772-1833), politician, husband to Elizabeth Kitty Acland.
 3. An alternative form of the word heronry (OED).
 4. Elizabeth Kitty Acland (1772-1813), sister of Sir John Dyke Acland, 8th Baronet.
 5. Sir John Dyke Acland (1778-1785), 8th Baronet, who died in childhood a few weeks after inheriting the title and estates of his grandfather.
 6. The anonymous Letters of Junius, first published 1772.
 7. Francesco Bartolozzi (1727-1815), an Italian engraver.
 8. Moved date here from centre of p.3, above address panel when unfolded.
 9. Postmarks 'COLLUMPTON' [now written Cullompton (Wikipedia), Devon] and 'C 11 SE 11 1813' to left of address panel when unfolded.
 10. Moved address panel here from centre of p.3 when unfolded, written vertically.

Metadata

Library References

Repository: The John Rylands Library, University of Manchester

Archive: Mary Hamilton Papers

Item title: Letter from John Dickenson to Mary Hamilton

Shelfmark: HAM/1/2/47

Correspondence Details

Author: John Dickenson

Place sent: Oakford (certainty: high)

Addressee: Mary Hamilton

Place received: London

Date sent: 6 September 1813

Letter Description

Summary: Letter from John Dickenson to his wife Mary née Hamilton. He writes writes about a new road that was being built in the area. He rode along the new road to Silverton, which is about 5 miles from Oakford. The road has not yet been 'cut thro[ugh] & a few places for short distances remain to be levelled'. He was told that 4 miles are to be levelled at '17/6 per yard, w[hi]ch amounts to £1540 per mile. There is also to be fencing and it is thought that it will in the end cost '£3000 per mile'. The letter continues with general news of the people he meets.
    Original reference No. 5.
   

Length: 1 sheet, 1467 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 2014/15 and 2015/16 provided by the Department of Linguistics and English Language, University of Manchester.

Research assistant: Isabella Formisano, former MA student, University of Manchester

Research assistant: Carla Seabra-Dacosta, MA student, University of Vigo

Transliterator: Isabella Formisano (submitted May 2016)

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: 15 June 2020

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