July 1st, 1763, morning part 1

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June 30th, 1763, night part 2

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June 30th, 1763, night part 1

Today we went to attend a ball at a more distant manor house. We drove 2 hours to get to Littledale, a picturesque setting right out of a book.The younger son, Lieutenant Flynn Littledale, a close friend of Lord C's, and just recently back from Quebec, marries his long-time fiancée, a Miss Brightwen. The Littledales are very wealthy people and now, that their son arrived back home (alive), they can afford to give him a generous living.
With the lucky man came also his friend Harbottle Shaughnessy; also an old friend of Lord C. I begin to wonder how many people that man knows and where from... - I very well know that he doesn't know them from Quebec, as he didn't come from the colonies after his brothers death - he was already in the country when it happened... Or he came back earlier than his friends, for the capitulation was already three years ago; only the peace treaty was signed this year in February... - I realize, I don't know the man I'm married to at all...

Well, we arrived here at Littledale and met the family and Lord C's friends. Mr O fascinated by their stories and Harriet and I were immediately shoved into the brides room... How I detest nuptials...

When the ball began, Lord C had nothing better to do, than asking for my hand in the first two dances. What else could I do than accept. Harriet danced of course with her Clive, but had filled her dancing booklet in no time and was not available for help. I also danced with Shaughnessy, who was very amiable; a distinctive trait among these friends I suppose. Mr. Littledale also asked for a dance and was very eager to have all informations about how his friend got such a wife... What!? I think I turned red as a strawberry and he just smiled, thinking me adorable and shy... Men!
The rest of the night was very pleasant, as the music was wonderful and the Littledales had hired a couple of professional dancers to entertain.

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June 30th, 1763, morning

-What I read last night, while I couldn't sleep.

Dr. Nathaniel Cotton: Visions in Verse for Entertainment of Young Minds (1751)
Real happiness can be found in the home.
Life's journey could best be met through marriage, which, rightly understood, gives to the tender and the good, a paradise below.
The family circle ist the source of comfort; the home and fireside the location and symbol of warmth.

-So what does that tell me about my domestic happiness?

Now I have to go, we're leaving for Littledale now and will stay there until Sunday - thank the Lord, Harriet will be with me.
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June 29th, 1763

Lord C and Mr. O all day in his study. What are they talking about? - Harriet in my closet this morning. We were talking about her honeymoon while I was dressing... Somehow I realize, that my marriage is totally different from hers. How I had wished for a love match! I escaped Frederick and got his brother. When I look back now I can't remember to have respired from one fiancé's death to another's proposal. It was all so fast and at the same time the days passed by in slow motion with my hands tied together...
I watched my best friend and her husband today at dinner and I could see in their eyes what they mean to each other. How I long to... but what for!? Harriets words still ring in my ears...
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June 28th, 1763

Our guests arose around 8am today. We had breakfast together at 9, although Lord C already had a light breakfast very early around 7 (Mrs. Lewis told me). He took Mr O out to show him the green house and the trout stream as well as to talk about his own home in Gloucestershire – I think they'll become friends, there's a natural amity between them, that excites Harriet in particular. I only see the opportunity in seeing more of my friend when our husbands are very close...
I took her to the library and then for a walk in the garden. Luncheon was a light repast of bread, cold meats, cider and chocolate. We went to dress at about three and joined again about 4 for dinner. Today we had boiled meats and vegetables in the first course and ragout and fish for the second. After tea and coffee, the men amused themselves with books and talked of their respective new volumes. I took my needlework and had Harriet watch me and talk to me about the fashions of Bath.
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June 27th, 1763

Today I confessed to Harriet all the drama about my marriage. And as I was telling her everything anyway, I also enclosed informations about last Friday's night. I couldn't write anything about it before. I was just so confused and also angry... frustrated... ashamed... It's just not working. I can see, that it probably, well, most certainly works with Harriet and Mr O. But it doesn't with HIM and me! I don't feel anything warm or comfortable when he comes near me; a slight tickling in my stomach, my heart beats, but... nothing that Harriet told me would happen within me, that happens within her. - I just can't feel him in my heart and let him come closer...

Harriet told me, that the richer and more well-born the family, the greater is their power to be exercised by parents to bring a certain match about and eldest sons are particularly exposed to parental pressure. Well, I know, that Frederick didn't want to marry me, as I didn't want to marry him. But while the most free are the younger sons, why did Lord C feel obliged to marry his brothers fianceè!? He cannot love me, can he!?
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June 26th, 1763

After church, our guests went back to the house with Lord C and I prepared myself for my Sunday school lesson. Today I played a geographical jigsaw with the girls.

My task in teaching them in handicrafts is seriously not my favourite, '...the intention of [a woman] being taught needlework, knitting and such like is not on account of the intrinsic value of all [she] can do with [her] hands, which is trifling, but to enable [her]... to fill up, in a tolerably agreeable way, some of the many solitary hours [she] must necessarily pass at home.
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June 25th, 1763

After the arrival of Harriet and her husband we had tea in the drawing room and when my dearest friend went to rest a while I joined her in her room. We talked about Bath and their journey to Leyland, which took them almost four days. When it was time for dinner I went to my own chamber, got dressed and presented myself in the drawing room. We had some tea again and Lord C joined us immediately engaging my friends husband in conversation and jokes – amicable as always and very sociable (curiously only in daylight...). We went upstairs, Lord C and Harriet and Mr O and myself – we two leading the way to the Dining Room. We had soup, fish and sweet pudding for the first course and roasted meats, fricassees and custards for the second. The dessert was completed with a fruit pie. Harriet and I left the table to prepare the coffee and tea table in the Drawing Room below. After the gentlemen joined us, we talked about their house and estate; Lord C very interested in Mr O's business and landed affairs. We had a light supper around 10pm and then went to bed; Harriet and Mr O clearly very tired after their long journey.
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June 24th, 1763

I know not how I could pass my days without my friendship towards Miss B. I love her like I should love my sisters. I can't remember when I last looked forward to seeing my sisters. (I rather prefer Violet to Patsy though; Patsy is always so pious and expostulating, like an old maid or annoying teacher...)
I'm looking forward to see Harriet and next week I'll introduce her to Miss B. They might become friends as well. Who couldn't fall for Miss B!?

Tomorrow my dearest Harriet will arrive, her husband towed along. I'm curious to see whether Lord C will like them. It all depends on that, so I will be able to see more of my friend in the future. In Town for instance, or travel into Gloucestershire or to Bath... They are to stay for two weeks after which they will proceed to meet her parents. I'm relieved to hear from Lord C that we won't have time to join them. - I can't imagine many worse things than visiting my family.

later that night...
I've read in the Bible, that 'if a married man dies, his brother must marry his sister-in-law.' - Does that count for only engaged couples as well? I mean, we've seen it didn't become Catherine of Aragon so well to have been the wife of her brother-in-law...

Whenever Lord C and I get along quite well and I'm not accidentally hurting his feelings, he supposedly sees a need in destroying this kind of harmony between us!
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June 23rd, 1763

Today I went to see Miss Bentham and the other ladies at the parsonage.
We talked a great deal of all things not concerning the orphans or the sunday school, then the discussion came upon the need of new books for the circulation library.
Miss Bentham and I sat on a small sofa near the window and we agreed on meeting together tomorrow at Mrs. Higgenbotham's to discuss the books for the girls... Dear Miss B is really an angel. She lives for those little creatures and their welfare. It was ridiculous to see that nothing came about that afternoon and that the ladies kept idle conversation than doing anything useful...
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June 22nd, 1763

Mrs. Lewis showed the house to some visitors from Hampshire. The gentleman seemed to be a man of fashion and rejoiced in the simplicity and modernity of our rooms in whites, creams and stone colours and the gilding. Lord C just recently had the saloons supplied with new hangings and rearranged the fine paintings in the drawing room and the hunting pictures in the dining room.
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June 21st, 1763

Jenna made new bouquets of sweet smelling herbs for the coffer chests to keep my gowns fresh.
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June 20th, 1763

Today I received a letter from Wortham, from my mother in particular, in which she announced exuberantly that Mrs P is with child again. An explanation for her temper before and after my wedding...
Timothy was inoculated against smallpox and rickets like Patsy's and Violet's children and also some servants were inoculated too. Father turned down an application by a manservant who wasn't inoculated. They are seriously worried about the first heir in their house.
Miss Bentham asked me if I were interested in a membership of the local circulation subscription library, which I approved and now I am to get new novels and essays and also to talk about them with her and some of the other ladies. Harriet will be happy not to be the only person any more who has to listen to my critics.
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Horrible Histories

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