The Mary Hamilton Papers : Letter from Mrs Sarah Dickenson (née Chetham) to Mary Hamilton

Dickenson (née Chetham), Sarah

The Mary Hamilton Papers

<p style='text-align: justify;'>Letter from Sarah Dickenson to Mary Hamilton. Mrs Dickenson writes of her gratitude for Hamilton's friendship and for the civilities that Hamilton's parents have shown to her son 'which he is perpetually talking of'. Writing of her son, she states that he is all that she can wish and hopes that he may 'increase in Virtue & Religion rather than Fortune'.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>The letter notes that Hamilton's strives for her own intellectual advancement and has no time for 'childish dissipations so natural to your sex & age'. She carries on to note that Hamilton has 'so much Humility that it will preserve you from pedantry, a character which in our Sex is very disagreeable, & is the cause why a Wise Woman is in general disliked'. Men, Mrs Dickenson notes, 'would have no Rivals in knowledge, & are angry at every Woman who shall affect it. [B]ut the truth is, our Sex are very apt to be proud of what they know, & this is the true cause, why we are despised'. Knowledge is a good thing for both sexes, if they keep in mind what the aim of learning is which to Mrs Dickenson is the 'Glory of God; & knowledge of ones self'. She believes that Hamilton holds this view and notes that this should give her satisfaction.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>Mrs Dickenson notes that she has been told that Hamilton is 'employ[e]d on working Chairs' which she hopes to see once her work is complete.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>She continues to write that if the distance were not so great she would love to visit Hamilton but as it is she will instead content herself with hearing from her and about her from her friends in Northampton.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>Dated at Taxal [Derbyshire].</p>

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