Internal ID: 1173 [see the .xml file]
Identifier: NLW 5500C, no. 115
Editors: Transcribed by Ffion Mair Jones; edited by Ffion Mair Jones; encoded by Vivien Williams. (2019)

Dear Sir

First let me exonerate my breast from what lies heaviest on it; by answering the question what will the M.S. (of the isle of Wight) come to? I think 2d a [...] page, the price of transcribing. I really never make anything of my friends: & in the present case, did imagine I did you a pleasure by the offer; but finding my mistake beg leave to withdraw it.

You will forgive my eccentrical benevolence in the petition I preferred to you in favor of my widow & her ten orphans. the print may be found this month in the shops: so I urge my request no farther; but lament it was made so mal a propos.

I hope you met with the fragment I sent to Mr Clarke. I read it carefully but so far I am am I gone that I do not profit the lest by it: but go on with greater fury than ever. I really rather incourage the mania, for I find it an innocent one & does more good than harm by alleviating the cares of winter life. With gratitude I think of Don Rde de Toro for supplying me so amply at various times for the food of this delicious frenzy. my endeavours have always been to repay him: but alas the ballanc [sic] is greatly against me. there is not a portfolio I open, but I see something I have owed to him.

Notwithstanding I am marrying a son with some expence in the out-fit I can find something for my follies, my friends [...] or my country, else I should think myself poor indeed! David went to town yesterday; & if the lawyers will permit, will cease being a bachelor next month.

Mr Clark will I dare say answer my queries respecting Godshill.2 I have left a blank to fill with the epitaphs. for the M.S. is fairly copied & is mightly illustrated with prints. It is fine work for winter evenings: part is past in that employ: & part with playing whist with my little girl of which old Greybeard3 is as fond as she can be.

a salutary fit of the Gout has favored me with a visit about a fortnight. it only shackles one foot & leaves hands & spirits free I hope you & the ladies4 are free from every complaint & rejoice to hear the good account of them.

Pray do not trouble yrself about any more materials for the isle of Wight as the work is complete: yet still I cd wish the further account of Sir Richard Worseleys shire5 for that may come in by way of preface.

Adieu Dear Sir, and think me ever & truely
Yr affect: friend

Tho. Pennant.


At the bottom of the last page, in Richard Bull's hand:

Epistola objurgatoriai | from my friend Pennant, Richd Bull

Editorial notes

1. The year is added in Richard Bull's hand.
2. Pennant received a letter from Richard Clarke, dated 6 December 1793, referring to accounts with which he had favoured Pennant respecting Godshill and Newport churches. See WCRO, CR 2017/TP189/50, Richard Clarke to Thomas Pennant, 6 December 1793.
3. A wistful reference by Pennant to his own advanced age.
4. Elizabeth and Catherine Bull.
5. Worsley’s The history of the Isle of Wight was published in 1781. This reference to a further account may indicate that Pennant was aware of Worsley’s work on the Museum Worsleyanum, the first part of which was published in 1798 but dated 1794.

i. ‘An objurgatory letter’. Bull notes Pennant's rebuke of his own reluctance to make a generous contribution to the appeal on behalf of the widow and children of John Lloyd, Caerwys. See also 1174.

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