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The Letters of Robert Bloomfield and His Circle, Edited By Tim Fulford and Lynda Pratt
TEI

194. Robert Bloomfield to Mary Ann Bloomfield, 5 November 1806* 

Dover, Nov 5th 1806

My Dear Mary

Hannah's letter reachd me just before I left Canterbury. I had that morning breakfasted with Surgeon Chandler who sometimes attended on poor Charles—I was concernd to hear that you had been indisposed, and rejoice in your recovery. I had many thoughts about poor Cousin Mason, and feel relieved from them by what has taken place, though I doubt you will run short of the possibles before I get home, so I inclose a 2 Pound Note for I have taken for the free three Harps, and do not spend much—I will now tell you more of my late proceedings. I recieved Hannah's on Saturday, and that same evening went by a return'd Chase to Ramsgate, about 16 miles, I had dined that day in company with Mr Friend whom I had often met at the Dukes and elsewhere, and he having two Sisters at Ramsgate, I found a home—and on Sunday lookd with much pleasure at that great work termd the Pier, which is certainly an exceeding fine object to a stranger, A strong Gale blew at noon, and the tides and wind set straight into the harbours mouth, and produced waves such as we never saw at Worthing, the stone causeway calld the Pier is about as high as Mr Williams's houses and perhaps 80 foot broad, but the waves at high water pelted us in by several times as we walkd round. On monday morning I set out to walk 12 miles to Deal, had refreshment at Sandwich, and proceeded on, but could get no bed at Deal for love nor money, I had been pelted by a violent rain, and had been riding in an oyster-Cart, had no great coat nor Umbrella, Alas! Poor fool! in this dilema, though wet allmost to the skin I had the luck to get another Chaise to Dover, and shutting myself up warm, and having warm Coffee inside me, and a glass of Brandy, arived at Mrs Pierce's at Dover (to whom I had letters) and a good night's rest cured all my troubles. Yesterday I amused myself as well as such a miserable wet day would allow, and this day I have spent delightfully in a twelve miles walk (there and back) to Folkstone, over Shakespeare's-Cliffs the air was clear, and the Chalk hills of France very plainly to be seen, I have much to say on this walk when I return the Cliffs most of the way are about as high as the Monument, and Shakespear's Cliff much higher. [1]  The Sea was a perfect Calm and throng'd with fishing vessels. I have just had tea.—

And now (say's you) when do you intend coming home? I answer that tomorrow I dine near Dover, and one of the company engages to convey me on to Mr Bridge's, at Denton which is in my way home; and there, I doubt I must tarry a day and a night, and then in my way home through Canterbury must take leave of the Kingsfords, and then on to Chatham; so that I fear I cannot possibly be in London before the middle of next week. I hope ernestly that the Children hold well, and that you are stout, My love to your Father,—I am quarterd on my friends both at this place and at Ramsgate, and shall at both the next places where I have to stop, my expences are by no means great, I was accosted here by our late neighbour Holloman, the Pastrycook, who had wore a Cockade, as a freeman of Dover.

It is too late for the post tonight so you will not have this untill Friday, when I shall have left this place. I mean to write to you again on Sunday, that you may have it on monday morning. Untill then, with true love to yourself and Children,

I am yours Dear Mary, most Affectionately

Robt Bloomfield

Nat passed a Winter at Deal, but I passed through it in the rain, and in the Dark, and in the sulks, and know no more of it than I do of paris—such are the consequences of traveling in November.

Post the letter to Mr Park

I have altered my mind and will not write to Mr Park untill I get to Denton,—

* BL Add. MS 28268, ff. 222–23 BACK

[1] The Monument is a 202 foot tall Doric fluted column, located at the junction of Monument Street and Fish Street Hill, London, near the north end of London Bridge. It was designed by Sir Christopher Wren and erected to commemorate the Great Fire of London. Its height represents the distance between the monument and the starting point of the fire. BACK

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September 2009

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