153. Robert Bloomfield to Mary Ann Bloomfield, 1
Honington Jany 1. 1805
My Dear Mary
I write on the first day of the year to inform you that my Mother
was buried last night.
We have had a sad time of it, and great expence. She was ill just a fortnight, and died on the 27th of December between 5 and 6 in the evening. She was never left nor neglected by night or by day; the Doctor attended
dayly, but her attack was too violent to admit of remedy. I was present at her death, a most afflicting scene!
George and Kitty, my Father and Bet, myself, Isaac and his children, Mr
Austin, Mrs Mothersole, the Old Lady Luince, and a great number of
neighbours, attended the Funeral. She is buried alongside of my Father.
The Rev Mr Fellows of Fakenham call'd often during her illness and on Saturday last spoke to me as to the tomb or monument which he wishes to
have erected on the grave, and says that with our permission he will get it done as a token of respect, by subscription amongst
the neighbouring Gentry, that the expence may not fall on me.  This plan of his render'd it necessary to have the grave arch'd and brick'd to the top, which
with much exertion we accomplished just in time to recieve the Coffin. This have increas'd the expence, but I know that you will
not begrudge what I have done when I come to show you why and how I have spent my money. It is a very great satisfaction to me
that I was here. I have had £20 transmitted to me from Mr Hood. I am now going to see
Mr Lofft for the [MS torn].
[MS torn] to Mr Williams—
And [MS torn] would be afraid to trust your [MS torn] [Han]nah by her [MS torn]
inside the Coach to Bury, [MS torn] she like [MS torn] poor Bet is sadly distress[ed] [MS torn] of her g[rand]mother, and I think Hannah [MS torn] her compan[y] [MS torn] week or two, she is [MS torn] to come [MS
torn]. 'But Hannah went before!' tell her she [MS torn] with me to Woolwich when I come home and the weather is fine. If Hannah comes Nat will see her to the
Coach and give her instructions as to breakfast and dinner and her bundle. She might bring colours and drawing utensils, and will
have to go to Troston. George will meet
the coach at Bury.—Now mind dear Mary, I don't urge this matter upon you, for I know it a serious one if you feel the least reluctance as the cold [MS
torn] ride or her means of geting home again don't let her come, for, I want to be home next week; and shall very likely leave her
behind. Weigh the job well and if it appears wrong, say so by writing to George
directly; or if she comes be sure write to Bury the day before. I want 4 of the
portraits. I wish Nat could pack them either by rolling them without creasing and
putting them in a tin tube like a candle Box, or in a narrow deal box by the Coach.  Hannah I know has some reason
about her and if you all think the present proposal wrong which I rather doubt myself even while I write, they may both depend on
coming here or elsewhere in finer weather. Love to Father and Children.
Yours never more affectionately
* BL Add. MS 28268, ff. 162–63 BACK
 The gravestone is briefly
described in Letter 413. BACK
portraits of Bloomfield were engraved by John Young at this time; one, a miniature, by Pierre Violet (see Letter 131) was
published at the start of January 1805. The other, by J. Rising, was also published in 1805. The dates suggest it is the
former to which Bloomfield refers here. BACK