Thursday, September 5, 2019

Interesting Little Book

Mum had a lovely birthday. She spent the day with my sisters at Southwold and then they were out to eat and back to Mum's for some cake and presents. I was afraid they would be rained out, but Mum said it rained overnight and the start of the morning, but cleared up nicely in the afternoon. As usual Mum got lots of presents - enough things to keep her going until Christmas!

I wanted to share a lovely little book I found while we were in Dorset. It was in a charity shop and just called my name as I passed by it. I found it quite interesting.

Does anyone else find books like this interesting?

I thought I'd share her entry from September 3rd, Wednesday 1800

Coleridge, William and John went home, to go upon Helvellyn with Mr Simpson. They set out after breakfast. I accompanied them up near the Blacksmith's. A fine coolish morning. I ironed till 1/2 past 3 - now very hot - I then went to a funeral at John Dawson's. About 10 men and 4 women. Bread, cheese and ale. They talked sensibly and cheerfully about common things. The dead person, 56 years of age, buried by the parish. The coffin was neatly lettered and pained black, and covered with a decent cloth. They set the corpse down at the door; and, while we stood within the threshold, the men with their hats off sang with decent and solemn countenances a verse of a funeral psalm. The corpse was then borne down the hill, and they sang till they had got past the Town-End. I was affected to tears while we stood in the house, the coffin lying before me. There were no near kindred, no children. When we got out of the dark house the sun was shining, and the prospect looked so divinely beautiful as I never saw it. It seemed more sacred than I had ever seen it, and yet more allied to human life. The green fields, neighbours of the churchyard, were as green as possible; and, with the brightness of the sunshine, looked quite gay. I thought she was going to a quiet spot, and I could not help weeping very much. When we came to the bridge, they began to sing again, and stopped during four lines before they entered the churchyard. The priest met us - he did not look as a man ought to do on such an occasion - I had seen him half-drunk the day before in a pot-house. Before we came with the corpse one of the company observed he wondered what sort of cue our Parson would be in! N.B. It was the day after the Fair. I had not finished ironing until 7 o'clock. The wind was now high and I did not walk - writing my journal now at 8 o'clock. William and John came home at 10 o'clock. 

I'm looking forward to reading more! Apparently Dorothy was the sister of poet William Wordworth.


  1. Yes I do like books like that. I enjoyed the extract so I'll see if I can borrow it from the library.

  2. Glad to hear that your Mum had a good birthday!

    I, too, enjoy books like that. Journals like that were the blogs of the time, I think! :)

  3. A fantastic find, just the sort of book I love. You can find copies on Amazon and there's a version for Kindle. Rather badly formatted, judging by the comments, but at under £2, probably worth putting up with that frustration.
    Dear Southwold, I do love that place. I hope your Mum had a lovely time there.

  4. What a find! I love reading about detailed events of her day.

  5. yes, I enjoy journals from days gone by. I also like the Miss Read series.


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