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

299. Robert Bloomfield to Hannah Bloomfield, 15–17 December 1815* 

Shefford, Dec 15. 1815

My Dear Girl

Your last was very agreeable, and very much wishd for, but contained nothing of Burton. Well, I suppose we must give it up. I am afraid Mr Phillips is ill, and I may have had brighter hopes in that quarter than were warranted by any friendships that may have existed between us.

—Sunday 17th—You see I had intended to write sooner, but Miss Badger came in for a gossip and put me out. I am happy to say that Mr Weston is still better, or in fact as well as the concerns of the world will let him. Miss Weston is quite well, but if you should write to her pray remember to say nothing that will intimate that you had heard of her brother's ill health. I will give you ample and full sufficient reasons for this injunction hereafter. I suppose you have learnd by this time that Whitbreads Gamekeeper was lately shot by a gang of poachers? It happen'd in that part of the Southill road leading down to the lodge gate from peppercorn's farm, and not far from a large Single Oak which you may remember standing on the right, near the roadside. The Funeral past through this place on Wednesday. He is buried somewhere beyond Hitchen.

I am truly glad to hear of even the remotest prospect of your getting employment, and if your entertainers mention the subject again I advise you by every consideration of love and interest to accept that, or any similar offer. I want your company more than you can imagine, it is therefore much against the grain of my affection that I thus urge with warmth and earnestness your continuance abroad at least till after March. I give you the following reasons for such earnestness.

Up to this moment I cannot even guess what I shall get for my reversion of copy. If I get but a small sum I must make it larger by parting with half my share of the whole concern, which will reduce our income by just half.—Whether I be compeld to this or not, all the Town knows that I must probably move at Lady-day. And I can not untill I learn my London affairs, judge either of my ability to hire another House at all, or of what path I shall take. There seems to be no House in the Town fit for our purpose. This is too large and some others would be too small. If you return to see me in the depth of my uncertainty and trouble, and then have to move with us in three months, it will make your home very uncomfortable. Would to God I could receive you better, but if you come home sooner, here is my Heart and my porridge pot now and for life. I write to your Reason, and not to your affection. The latter is my treasure, I wish it would pay my debts! Yet make yourself happy on my account. I am not deprest, I am not ill, but this plaguy suspence worries me sadly sometimes. I shall know my fate as to London in a few weeks, and the rest must depend on that. Learn all you can. Make yourself usefull. Yours ultimately must be the gain. You have given a very good critique on the Orphan, I should have liked to have seen it. We have mountebanks in the Town. Leevit won a shoulder of mutton, and one of the Wright's, a leg.—

—All in the House have had colds but myself—The post hour is come, and my fingers numbd with cold, God bless my dear girl, and reward all her friends.

Yours till more news starts

[signature cut off]

P.S. Harvey has sent us some little Davy's [1] 

Address: Miss Bloomfield, / Ed Lockwood's Esq, / nr Angel Hill, / Bury

* BL Add. MS 28268, ff. 358–59 BACK

[1] A reference to the arrival of copies of Bloomfield's children's book The History of Little Davy's New Hat from the publisher Harvey and Darton. BACK

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Published @ RC

September 2009

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