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, concerning news of Hamilton's relations in Cheltenham, including Mrs Holman.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>Herries is no longer going to visit London as the legal business that drew her there can be carried out by commission. She regrets very much not being able to visit Hamilton and her other friends, and not being able to speak with her on 'confidential' matters, but at the moment she is unable to justify any additional expense other than what is needed for day to day. Herries does not wish to worry Hamilton by telling her this and hopes that 'the affair of my jointure will be settled in the course of the winter'.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>Herries continues her letter on a proposed trip Hamilton has organised to Cheshire. She attempts to persuade her to make a detour to Cheltenham on her return from her trip. It will not take her over twenty miles from her route and she will also benefit from the waters if she comes.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>Herries writes of a visit to Hamilton's cousin, Mrs Holman, and reports that she has recovered from the birth [her baby sadly died upon birth, see HAM/1/17/286] and she seems to be in 'good spirits'. Herries writes that if 'she ever be with child again, I should in her place put myself under the care of Clarke the famous midwife in London who with repeated success has brought living children into the world by a premature delivery at seven months'. According to Herries, it seems that Mrs Holman is unable to give birth full term because of a 'narrowness of the passage owing to the internal projection of the back bones to the womb'. Herries has not seen much of Mrs Holman's parents [Frederick and Rachel Hamilton], as she has not been out much in the evening. She has called on them in the morning a few times and Mrs Hamilton has received her with great civility and with some 'palaver'. [Some of the text has been censored.] Herries also writes somewhat unflatteringly on Mrs Holman's sister, Lady Aldborough, and her friend.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>Herries ends her letter briefly writing on family and friends.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>Dated at Cheltenham.</p>

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