Single Letter

HAM/1/5/2/13

Letter from Wilhelmina Murray to Mary Hamilton

Diplomatic Text


      Honble. Mrs. Murray[1]

Stanley House 1 of August
      1788

                                                        
my Dear Mrs. Dickinson
      I am too vain perhaps, but judging
of a Friends heart by my own, am very loth to imagine
because they are silent, the old adage is verified, out
of sight, out of mind: but am willing to supose
they are taken up with something more material
than writing: but am sorry to find yours was owing
to the fair Louisa's pains: believe me I thought your
silence very long, but hope you will make amends
and give me the pleasure of hearing soon that you
are all well, and that I shall in future have a better
Correspondent: for tho' your young charge will
every day have a longer claim upon your time yet
remember I was honor'd with your Friendship before
she was born -- I am much flatter'd by the kind
enquiries you make after my health which is now
very good; It was not so when last in London, and
never having known what it was to be out of health
made my friends think the more of it: and myself
too I believe: but I was very good and did as I was
bid, and by following good advice from Doctor Douglas



and coming into this good air have the pleasure to tell
you I am very well; tho' it has taught me to think as
we grow old, we must expect sometimes to be sick --
Your picture of the Bon Ton is well drawn, and
I am sorry to say very like, tho' I am of opinion
the World is much as it was, a certain proportion
of Virtue & Vice always have prevail'd, but fashon
makes some ages more flagrant than others because
they are more sincere -- for I shrewdly suspect our
Great Grandmothers days were not much better
than ours, the only difference from a reserve of
Manner, a stiffneʃs of the times characters were care
fully
hid, and of course there were greater cheats
at present nobody has a right to complain, as I
think it quite their own faults if deceived by
apearances -- all our Friends are returned and
I think our young ones much improved by their
journey to London we spent a Week at Dunkeld and
celebrated the Duke of Atholl and Lord Tullibardines[2]
birthday's with fireworks and good chear -- after
which we returned home and the Duke went to the
Isle of Man with his two Uncles, Mr. Graham's
and a party of Gentlemen, from whence they all



returned last Monday in good health, but had as
much rain as we had here: Lady Jane[3] and Mr.
Muirhead[4] were with us, part of the time; and are
now at Dunkeld she is a Sister of the Dukes --
and lives at Bath, as do Lady Charlotte and Amelia
Murray[5] -- I hope you continue to Excersise your
pencil, we find great amusement my Sister has
taken some preaty views in the great stile while
my humbler pencil, makes a card or draws
a flower; there is a very good Botanic Garden
at Perth; from whence I have more flowers sent
me than I can draw -- how amused the Royal F-y R.[F.]
must be at Cheltenham the scene and country so
new, hope it will do the K. a great deal of good
but dont you think it a punishment, for His laughing
so much at water drinking places; to be forced to
submit to go himself, and experience their virtue?
I should think he would from the nature of the
Spring; find very great benefit from it; as well as
the Princeʃses -- supose it has been his scheme for the
Duke of York[6] to sell his Estate in Yorkshire & purchase
Oatlands -- the one was too far North to be agreable I



imagine and the other is just enough for a Prince
to amuse himself with, without gaining command or
interest and is a beautifull spot within reach of court
&c -- I supose in my next I may give you joy of a new
cousin as her Graces apearance would make one supose



its arrival not far off -- I have settled it to be a son
there is daughters plenty and Dukes should have but few
as it is so hard to provide for them. My Sister & good husband
joyn with me in best wishes to yourself beging best compts
to Mr. Dickenson & remain Dear Mrs. Dickensons
                                                         sincere and affectionate Friend
                                                         Wilhelmina Murray
at least 12 Kiʃses to yr. Louisa[7]

Mrs. Dickinson
      No. 27- Old Burlington Street
                             Piccadilly[8]

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


Notes


 1. Moved annotation here from below dateline at top of p.1.
 2. John Murray, 4th Duke of Atholl (1755-1830), succeeded to the title of 7th Earl of Tullibardine in 1774. Married to Margery Forbes and cousin-in-law of Mary Hamilton.
 3. Lady Jane Muirhead (née Murray) (d. 1846), sister of John Murray, 4th Duke of Atholl (1755-1830), who was a cousin-in-law of Mary Hamilton. Married to John Grosset Muirhead.
 4. John Grosset Muirhead (d. 1836).
 5. Probably Lady Charlotte Murray (d. 1808) and Lady Amelia Murray (d. 1818), sisters of the Duke of Atholl.
 6. Prince Frederick, Duke of York and Albany (1763-1827).
 7. This postscript appears to the left of the closing salutation and signature.
 8. Moved address panel here from centre of p.3 when unfolded, written vertically.

Normalised Text



Stanley House 1 of August
      1788

                                                        
my Dear Mrs. Dickinson
      I am too vain perhaps, but judging
of a Friends heart by my own, am very loth to imagine
because they are silent, the old adage is verified, out
of sight, out of mind: but am willing to suppose
they are taken up with something more material
than writing: but am sorry to find yours was owing
to the fair Louisa's pains: believe me I thought your
silence very long, but hope you will make amends
and give me the pleasure of hearing soon that you
are all well, and that I shall in future have a better
Correspondent: for though your young charge will
every day have a longer claim upon your time yet
remember I was honour'd with your Friendship before
she was born -- I am much flatter'd by the kind
enquiries you make after my health which is now
very good; It was not so when last in London, and
never having known what it was to be out of health
made my friends think the more of it: and myself
too I believe: but I was very good and did as I was
bid, and by following good advice from Doctor Douglas



and coming into this good air have the pleasure to tell
you I am very well; though it has taught me to think as
we grow old, we must expect sometimes to be sick --
Your picture of the Bon Ton is well drawn, and
I am sorry to say very like, though I am of opinion
the World is much as it was, a certain proportion
of Virtue & Vice always have prevail'd, but fashion
makes some ages more flagrant than others because
they are more sincere -- for I shrewdly suspect our
Great Grandmothers days were not much better
than ours, the only difference from a reserve of
Manner, a stiffness of the times characters were carefully
hid, and of course there were greater cheats
at present nobody has a right to complain, as I
think it quite their own faults if deceived by
appearances -- all our Friends are returned and
I think our young ones much improved by their
journey to London we spent a Week at Dunkeld and
celebrated the Duke of Atholl and Lord Tullibardines
birthday's with fireworks and good cheer -- after
which we returned home and the Duke went to the
Isle of Man with his two Uncles, Mr. Graham's
and a party of Gentlemen, from whence they all



returned last Monday in good health, but had as
much rain as we had here: Lady Jane and Mr.
Muirhead were with us, part of the time; and are
now at Dunkeld she is a Sister of the Dukes --
and lives at Bath, as do Lady Charlotte and Amelia
Murray -- I hope you continue to Exercise your
pencil, we find great amusement my Sister has
taken some pretty views in the great style while
my humbler pencil, makes a card or draws
a flower; there is a very good Botanic Garden
at Perth; from whence I have more flowers sent
me than I can draw -- how amused the Royal Family
must be at Cheltenham the scene and country so
new, hope it will do the King a great deal of good
but don't you think it a punishment, for His laughing
so much at water drinking places; to be forced to
submit to go himself, and experience their virtue?
I should think he would from the nature of the
Spring; find very great benefit from it; as well as
the Princesses -- suppose it has been his scheme for the
Duke of York to sell his Estate in Yorkshire & purchase
Oatlands -- the one was too far North to be agreeable I



imagine and the other is just enough for a Prince
to amuse himself with, without gaining command or
interest and is a beautiful spot within reach of court
&c -- I suppose in my next I may give you joy of a new
cousin as her Graces appearance would make one suppose



its arrival not far off -- I have settled it to be a son
there is daughters plenty and Dukes should have but few
as it is so hard to provide for them. My Sister & good husband
join with me in best wishes to yourself begging best compliments
to Mr. Dickenson & remain Dear Mrs. Dickensons
                                                         sincere and affectionate Friend
                                                         Wilhelmina Murray
at least 12 Kisses to your Louisa

Mrs. Dickinson
      Number 27- Old Burlington Street
                             Piccadilly

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



 1. Moved annotation here from below dateline at top of p.1.
 2. John Murray, 4th Duke of Atholl (1755-1830), succeeded to the title of 7th Earl of Tullibardine in 1774. Married to Margery Forbes and cousin-in-law of Mary Hamilton.
 3. Lady Jane Muirhead (née Murray) (d. 1846), sister of John Murray, 4th Duke of Atholl (1755-1830), who was a cousin-in-law of Mary Hamilton. Married to John Grosset Muirhead.
 4. John Grosset Muirhead (d. 1836).
 5. Probably Lady Charlotte Murray (d. 1808) and Lady Amelia Murray (d. 1818), sisters of the Duke of Atholl.
 6. Prince Frederick, Duke of York and Albany (1763-1827).
 7. This postscript appears to the left of the closing salutation and signature.
 8. 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 Wilhelmina Murray to Mary Hamilton

Shelfmark: HAM/1/5/2/13

Correspondence Details

Author: Wilhelmina Murray (née King)

Place sent: Stanley, near Perth (certainty: high)

Addressee: Mary Hamilton

Place received: London

Date sent: 1 August 1788

Letter Description

Summary: Letter from Wilhelmina Murray to Mary Hamilton, relating to society and friends. The King has gone to Cheltenham to take the waters, and while Murray hopes they will be of benefit, she asks: 'dont you think it a punishment, for His laughing so much at water drinking places; to be forced to submit to go himself, and experience their virtue?'.
    The letter also touches on Murray's view of society. She writes that the world is much as it always was 'a certain proportion of Virtue & Vice always have prevail[e]d, but fashon [sic] makes some ages more flagrant than others'.
   

Length: 1 sheet, 758 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: Donald Alasdair Morrison, undergraduate student, University of Manchester

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

Transliterator: Samuel Potter, undergraduate student, University of Manchester (submitted November 2014)

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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