Saturday 28th February 1846

” — Matthew Ward gave me to understand that it was time I paid something towards the rent, but I remain unmoved. Thoughts at work too concerned how to act. Must shortly see about getting a home of my own. — The west end of Piccadilly, the length of the Green Park and on that side the way, there has been great alterations made viz the foot pavement has been thrown back some feet, so that the trees that were formerly enclosed in the iron railing are now in line with the kerb, the railing being also removed back, thereby allowing considerably more room for the carriage way.

At the top of Piccadilly, near to Hyde Park Gates and directly opposite St George’s Hospital, has been lately erected three urinals, or places of convenience for the male sex, built of stone.

The weather this month has been most wonderful with the exception of about three days slight frosts it has been quite warm, more resembling May or September. This winter will be one remembered for years to come, as such weather for the season was never remembered by the oldest person now living, to commence so mild, and continue so all through. But it is not too late yet for frosty weather to come, as March month is generally considered a cold one. But as yet it is most extraordinary. To my recollection I have never passed a winter through without chilblains, more or less severe, but this winter I have had no signs of any. Nay, this day February 28th, I sat in office with windows and door both open to admit of a little air and so close was it in the evening that I was obliged to book the day’s work in my shirt sleeves. The trees are now budding out very fast while some bear small leaves already.

Coals sold at Eccleston Wharf this month: 1476 and nine twentieths tons.”

Thursday 26th February 1846

“Had job to move the Grenadier Guards from the Barracks near Charing Cross to the Railway Terminus, Paddington, which occupied nearly eight hours. This job is most annoying as there is no remuneration made it.  We care not how seldom it comes.”

Tuesday 24th February 1846

“Died this morning at 9 Richmonds Buildings, James, son of William and Caroline Marshall of the second floor back after a short illness, aged one and a half years. Bought antique Pocket Bible at bookseller, corner of Princes and Richmond Street, Soho, date 1648.  Adolphus Frederick, Duke of Cambridge, youngest son to the late George III, completed his 72nd year. Had pancake for supper.”

Monday 23rd February 1846

“Settled with gang by daylight first time this year. Quarter before 10 o’clock this night the Park and Tower guns commenced firing in quick succession for upwards of a quarter of an hour. The cause thereof to us unknown. Express extraordinary arrived from India in which is stated that a long and severe engagement has taken place between the natives and the British, which is reported as yet is somewhat in favour of the latter. Great slaughter both sides. Many English officers killed among which is General Sale.”

Sunday 22nd February 1846

“Rose early, 6 o’clock, owing to my physic working me. Went to coffee shop in Little Rupert Street, Soho, to read news of the week. Made for St Katherine’s Church, Regent’s Park, very early, arrived there at half past 10 o’clock. Doors not open, crowd of people waiting. Bishop of Hereford preached in aid of the funds for building the new hospital in Brompton, now building, for consumption and diseases of the chest. The Bishop delivered a rather able sermon: text Hebrews ch13, v16. After service a collection took place.  Church filled before 11 o’clock with people of the upper class. After dinner took afternoon walk accompanied by Ann. Wore half-mourning gown and new straw bonnet trimmed black, first time, in respect to the decease of the late Mrs Burns. Walked through Regent’s Park. Rain threatened, halted, held up again. Proceeded onwards over Primrose Hill and fields to Hampstead Church. Rain fell in torrents, rather wetted. Sat awhile in church; looked over some monuments and tablets. Proceeded homewards raining very heavy.  Ann got very wet, self fared better. — Got across the fields to a narrow lane with an archway over. Sheltered ourselves under arch. Got to wicked tricks. — Rain gave over, hastened home. Had pint beer and two biscuits at ‘St George’ public house in Hampstead Road.  Met old Dicky Andrews in Euston Square, right well looked he. Home and to bed etc.  Old Granny Shepard very poorly. Mr Liston, the celebrated comedian, died this day, in his 71st year, being born August 1775, and on Monday 30th (corrected to March 2nd) was buried at a quarter before 10 in the cemetery, Kensal Green.”


[Editor’s note:  Nathaniel added this note about the death of John Liston, the comic actor, some time after February 22nd, but Liston actually died on March 22nd and Nathaniel mentions the death again then. The burial took place on March 30th.]