The Mary Hamilton Papers : Letter from Lady Catherine Herries (née Foote) to Mary Hamilton

Herries (née Foote), Catherine

The Mary Hamilton Papers

<p style='text-align: justify;'>Letter from Lady Catherine Herries to Mary Hamilton, discussing news of friends, servants, politics and France.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>Herries writes of her pleasure at receiving Hamilton's letter and of her joy at the news that Anna Clarke gave to her that Hamilton's letter reiterated [a proposed visit to London]. She continues that it is 'delightful - both in cause & effect to have a little independence is always pleasant'. It is so 'sweet to have it come a dear parent who knows the true way to make himself loved & honoured'. She rejoices at Hamilton's and Dickenson's new 'pleasing arrangement' and looks forward to seeing Hamilton more often in town. Herries continues her letter on her hopes of seeing Hamilton and the pleasure that this would give her. She writes on her own and her family's health.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>Herries's friend Miss Bowdler has been in town for a number of weeks. She had met her on the second stage from Portsmouth and 'accompanied her back to town by journies [<i>sic</i>] of a stage a day - it was a sad painful business'. Her company was a 'comfort' or a 'support' to her friend who has been ill for some time. The letter continues on her friend Mrs Hunter [Anne Hunter née Home (1742/3-1821) poet, married surgeon, John Hunter] who has been nursing her husband who is suffering from gout. Herries hopes that now his health improves that Mrs Hunter will be able to get out a little more often. Herries will remember Hamilton to Mrs Hunter and she is sure that she will rejoice at the thought of Hamilton being in town. Herries knows that it will distress Hamilton to know that her house-keeper, 'Bowie', is ill and that she probably will not be able to continue in her position in Herries's employment (see HAM/1/17/134).</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>Herries changes the tone of the letter, stating 'and now after all this domestic detail what shall I tell you about Politics'. She reports that Parliament will not be dissolved yet and things are 'pretty quiet' in France at the moment. The 'weakness of the Court party and such is the general wish of the nation in favour of the late great revolution - (perhaps the most singular in History)'. She continues that even if the French finances can be arranged in 'tolerable order there seems little prospect of a return to high monarchical power'. Herries moves on to the situation in Flanders, 'where there have been dreadful scenes to be sure'.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>The letter continues with general news of friends.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>Dated at St James's Street, [London].</p>

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