Single Letter

HAM/1/4/3/18

Letter from Jane Holman to Mary Hamilton

Diplomatic Text


No: 35 Aldgate High Street
London
Jan: 27th: 1807.

My dear Cousin,

      It was my intention, independently of your
most kind letter just received, to write to you
by this Post, to communicate the afflicting in-
telligence
a letter from my Father brought
me, yesterday -- the death of my dear Mother.
As my poor Father has no one with him
to make this dreadful communication,
you might perhaps not immediately receive
it: -- I fear, as it is, the papers will be your
first informers. However, I was determined
to lose no time. My Father wrote to me on
the 13th:, saying that my poor dear Mother
was in a deplorable state from a confirmed
Asthma, which baffled medicine, and that
she was sent by her Physician, to Dawlish
in Devonshire, on account of the purity of
the air; but that letter, from its going
first to the Hill Top, I did not receive till
Saturday last, and yesterday brought me the
fatal one I have mentioned. She expired on
Thursday last, the 22d:, but six days after her



arrival at Dawlish. The cause of her death, it
seems, was, water upon the Chest. I need not
tell you that am I in the deepest affliction;
for, to a heart like yours, it is unneceʃsary to
observe, that no circumstances can blunt
the pang of nature for the loʃs of a Mother.
My poor Father's situation, too, is dreadful.
He is at Bath. I have written to entreat
him to let me go to him for a little while,
to break his dreadfulmiserable solitude. Whether he
will agree to it, I don't know; but I am
sure you will think I did no more than
my duty, in making the offer. It is a great
mercy that this blow did not reach me in
Herefordshire; for butas, were it not for the soothings of
friendship, I think, after all I had already
suffered, it would have extinguished me[.] A
short time after I wrote to you last, I was
so ill, and so low, that Mrs: Mann, who is
settled in an excellent house here, insisted on
my taking up my abode in it, at least till
I got better, that I might have her nursing,
and be within immediate reach of aʃsistance,
should I want it. I was easily persuaded, and have



been with her these three weeks -- I have not
been able as yet, to see one friend besides those I am
with, not even my Sister (who contrary to my ex-
pectation
, is in town); but was beginning to
get considerably better, when this shock threw
me back again. Your letter, my dear Cousin,
was eleven days in reaching me, on account
of those vile Croʃs-Posts. I cannot tell you
how much I am obliged to you for it. Your
warm interest in what concerns us, is particu-
larly
gratifying. I was so ashamed of that long
epistle all about ourselves, that I was near
burning instead of sending it. However, I am now
glad it went. I did not even leave myself ------
to ask after your health, so far from answering
any questions -- therefore, before I proceed any
further, I will hope that you have entirely lost
the cough you complained of.      To answer your
questions -- my eldest niece is Lady Louisa Rodney --
she is at Ceylon with her husband, who has a
good employment there. Ly: E: B: and her husband
are in embarraʃsed circumstances, already -- not
entirely, however, from improvidence; but partly from
diminution of his Barbadoes receipts. I have not heard
of any difference between the Husbands and Mother. -- I see I need



not caution you to be totally ignorant of my affairs to
my Father, should he ever mention them to you. Nothing
has gone wrong with my B:, whom, I suppose, you mean
by "a certain young man". 'Tis best keep as smooth as
poʃsible, I believe. Your kind suggestions for the advan-
tage
of my dear friend in D. are very wise ones, and
shall be considered. He stands well with the D. & Dʃs.;
but whether they will be of any material use, I can't
say. -- Pray give my kindest love to Mr: Dickenson




and my Cousin, Louisa; and believe that I shall never
forget the kindneʃs you have shewn me. The young man
wrote since I came to town, proposing a visit to the
Hill Top; so, if I don't go to B. I must receive him on
my return. Adieu, dearest Cousin -- ever your obliged
                                                         and affectionate
J:H.[1]

P.S. Mrs: Mann retains her name, having
married her Cousin.[2]

I was longing to hear from you, & should
soon have written had I not had this sad
neceʃsity for doing so.[3]

Mrs: Dickenson[4]
Leighton House.
Leighton Buzzard
Bedfordshire.[5]

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


Notes


 1. This section appears at bottom of p.3 below the address when unfolded.
 2. The first postscript appears to the left of the closing salutation and signature
 3. Moved second postscript here from right side of address panel in centre of p.3 when unfolded, written vertically.
 4. Postmark 'B JA 27 [1]807' split to left and right of address when unfolded.
 5. Moved address panel here from centre of p.3 when unfolded, written vertically.

Normalised Text


No: 35 Aldgate High Street
London
January 27th: 1807.

My dear Cousin,

      It was my intention, independently of your
most kind letter just received, to write to you
by this Post, to communicate the afflicting intelligence
a letter from my Father brought
me, yesterday -- the death of my dear Mother.
As my poor Father has no one with him
to make this dreadful communication,
you might perhaps not immediately receive
it: -- I fear, as it is, the papers will be your
first informers. However, I was determined
to lose no time. My Father wrote to me on
the 13th:, saying that my poor dear Mother
was in a deplorable state from a confirmed
Asthma, which baffled medicine, and that
she was sent by her Physician, to Dawlish
in Devonshire, on account of the purity of
the air; but that letter, from its going
first to the Hill Top, I did not receive till
Saturday , and yesterday brought me the
fatal one I have mentioned. She expired on
Thursday last, the 22d:, but six days after her



arrival at Dawlish. The cause of her death, it
seems, was, water upon the Chest. I need not
tell you that am I in the deepest affliction;
for, to a heart like yours, it is unnecessary to
observe, that no circumstances can blunt
the pang of nature for the loss of a Mother.
My poor Father's situation, too, is dreadful.
He is at Bath. I have written to entreat
him to let me go to him for a little while,
to break his miserable solitude. Whether he
will agree to it, I don't know; but I am
sure you will think I did no more than
my duty, in making the offer. It is a great
mercy that this blow did not reach me in
Herefordshire; as, were it not for the soothings of
friendship, I think, after all I had already
suffered, it would have extinguished me. A
short time after I wrote to you last, I was
so ill, and so low, that Mrs: Mann, who is
settled in an excellent house here, insisted on
my taking up my abode in it, at least till
I got better, that I might have her nursing,
and be within immediate reach of assistance,
should I want it. I was easily persuaded, and have



been with her these three weeks -- I have not
been able as yet, to see one friend besides those I am
with, not even my Sister (who contrary to my expectation
, is in town); but was beginning to
get considerably better, when this shock threw
me back again. Your letter, my dear Cousin,
was eleven days in reaching me, on account
of those vile Cross-Posts. I cannot tell you
how much I am obliged to you for it. Your
warm interest in what concerns us, is particularly
gratifying. I was so ashamed of that long
epistle all about ourselves, that I was near
burning instead of sending it. However, I am now
glad it went. I did not even leave myself ------
to ask after your health, so far from answering
any questions -- therefore, before I proceed any
further, I will hope that you have entirely lost
the cough you complained of.      To answer your
questions -- my eldest niece is Lady Louisa Rodney --
she is at Ceylon with her husband, who has a
good employment there. Lady Emily Best and her husband
are in embarrassed circumstances, already -- not
entirely, however, from improvidence; partly from
diminution of his Barbados receipts. I have not heard
of any difference between the Husbands and Mother. -- I see I need



not caution you to be totally ignorant of my affairs to
my Father, should he ever mention them to you. Nothing
has gone wrong with my Brother, whom, I suppose, you mean
by "a certain young man". 'Tis best keep as smooth as
possible, I believe. Your kind suggestions for the advantage
of my dear friend in Dublin are very wise ones, and
shall be considered. He stands well with the Duke & Duchess;
but whether they will be of any material use, I can't
say. -- Pray give my kindest love to Mr: Dickenson




and my Cousin, Louisa; and believe that I shall never
forget the kindness you have shewn me. The young man
wrote since I came to town, proposing a visit to the
Hill Top; so, if I don't go to Bath I must receive him on
my return. Adieu, dearest Cousin -- ever your obliged
                                                         and affectionate
Jane Holman

P.S. Mrs: Mann retains her name, having
married her Cousin.

I was longing to hear from you, & should
soon have written had I not had this sad
necessity for doing so.

Mrs: Dickenson
Leighton House.
Leighton Buzzard
Bedfordshire.

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



 1. This section appears at bottom of p.3 below the address when unfolded.
 2. The first postscript appears to the left of the closing salutation and signature
 3. Moved second postscript here from right side of address panel in centre of p.3 when unfolded, written vertically.
 4. Postmark 'B JA 27 [1]807' split to left and right of address when unfolded.
 5. 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 Jane Holman to Mary Hamilton

Shelfmark: HAM/1/4/3/18

Correspondence Details

Author: Jane Holman (née Hamilton)

Place sent: London

Addressee: Mary Hamilton

Place received: Leighton Buzzard, Beds.

Date sent: 27 January 1807

Letter Description

Summary: Letter from Mrs Jane Holman née Hamilton to Mary Hamilton. The letter relates to the death of Jane's mother, Rachel Hamilton, and her concerns for her father. Frederick Hamilton had written earlier in the month that his wife was suffering 'from a confirmed asthma, which baffled medicine' and that on the advice of her physician they had travelled to Dawlish in Devonshire on account of the pure air. Her death was ascribed to 'water upon the chest'. Jane Holman has written to her father to ask if she may visit him but is unsure whether he will let her. She notes that she has been ill herself for some time and had been staying with Mrs Mann, who has been nursing her.
    The letter also provides more general news. Lady E.B. [Lady Emily Best, née Stratford, married Thomas Best] and her husband are reported as being in economic distress, partly because of 'his Barbados receipts'. She also writes of a 'young man' [her brother Robert] who has written to her since her return to London, suggesting he visit her, and that if she does not go to Bath she will have to receive him. Jane Holman complains that it has taken eleven days for her to receive Mary Hamilton's letter and blames 'those vile cross-posts'.
    Dated at 35 Aldgate High Street, [London].
   

Length: 4 sheets, 793 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 2016/17 provided by The John Rylands Research Institute.

Research assistant: Sarah Connor, undergraduate student, University of Manchester

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

Transliterator: Lucy Campbell, undergraduate student, University of Manchester (submitted May 2017)

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: 13 April 2020

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