Sunday 15th November 1846

“Rose at 6 o’clock, breakfasted and started at 9 o’clock for St Mary Lambeth.  On my way copied into scrapbook the inscriptions of stones against Crown Court, Richmond Buildings, and James Street, as also a few inscriptions in and outside church. Afternoon the burial of Joseph Richards. The body left Richmond Buildings at 2 o’clock in a single horse hearse and coach followed by six mourners – first his mother, and brother, and brother’s wife, and three other gents – to St Giles’s cemetery adjoining Old St Pancras, whence they arrived at 3 o’clock. I, accompanied by Ann, followed and saw him deposited in his last resting place, a grave very damp and about six feet deep at nearly the bottom of the ground between the tomb of Thomas Bethell and the flat ledger of Anne Allston, about four feet from the former and about two feet from the latter, with his head to the west. He was taken in the chapel. The coffin was about five feet four inches by 16 inches … and oiled and finished with white furniture ornamented with stars on the lid and sides. After the funeral we went into Old St Pancras and took off into scrapbook the inscription on William Woollatt’s stone. Afterwards returned home to tea. A birth also took place in our house, first floor back room: the wife of Mr George Mitchell, bricklayer, was delivered of a daughter this morning at 11 o’clock. The husband during his wife’s confinement takes his rest in the bed occupied by Uncle John Sheppard (back attic). — Had Ann up in my room as usual in the evening. — Closed the day by reading a portion of Ainsworth’s Latin Dictionary.”

Sunday 1st November 1846

“Rose at 7 o’clock, breakfasted and went and took a turn in St Paul’s Cathedral, and from thence to St Mary-at-Hill. Returning home through Pancras Lane, I met a man who accosted me in a peculiar manner telling a distressing tale and prevailed in getting a penny out of me, I, by his manner, believing him to be true. After dinner went to meet Ann with the intent of going to St Paul’s, but, after waiting till it was too late, I proceeded alone to St Anne’s Soho, looked over the tablets and stopped while prayers. — Had Ann up in the evening. — Took walk — with Ann — over Westminster Bridge, and after the outside of the Abbey etc, returned home about half past 9 o’clock. Saw the 2d omnibuses running for the first time in Trafalgar Square north side.”

Sunday 25th October 1846

“Chillblains getting very troublesome obliged to use onion and salt to them. Wore worsted stockings for first time this season. Went through the Temple and round the church and through the churchyard. Copied into scrapbook Latin inscriptions over door in Farrars Buildings as also one within the railings surrounding the church. Went inside and saw Knights Templars brass effigies. This I believe is the first time I was ever inside the Temple Church. From thence to St Mary Aldermanbury, Bow Lane. Rained very heavy all the way home, at times so violent that I was obliged to put up at different times. Beef sausages for dinner. A duel of an afternoon. Stopped at home translating Latin and taking to paper some particulars of Granny Shepard’s family from her own words, of which she tired and waxed wrath with me for bothering her so. — Had Ann up in evening as usual. — Afterwards took walk — with ditto — through the City by Fleet Street to St Paul’s churchyard and then returned home whence I arrived half past 9 o’clock. White puppy fell overboard in the canal and was drowned. Mr Richard Latham completes his 43rd year (a fellow clerk at Eccleston Wharf).”


[Editor’s note: No entries on 26 or 27 October]

Sunday 18th October 1846

“Very wet morning. Went to New Tottenham Court Chapel, Grafton Street, Tottenham Court Road in conseqence of the weather preventing me going to my regular church. The rain descended in such torrents that I was obliged to wear two coats and carry umbrella likewise, even then I returned home wet, it raining without ceasing. At home all the afternoon reading History Queen Anne etc. — After tea had Ann up as usual. Carried on the same game as heretofore. — Took walk in evening with Ann through Fleet Street etc returned home quarter past 9 o’clock.”


[Editor’s note: No entries on 19 or 20 October]

Sunday 4th October 1846

“Breakfasted and afterwards went to coffee shop near the Royal Exchange, a turning out of Cornhill, from thence to church, St Mary Abchurch, (I have noticed of late that all plugs are up in the City to keep the streets cleansed and to keep away the cholera (if possible) which is now prevalent in some parts of Europe and which it is feared will ultimately pay a visit to England, but it seems confined to the City, not having noticed any thing of the kind in the suburban districts). Stopped at home all afternoon taking black Dutch clock to pieces and oiling it, hoped to have it in going order by dark but was deceived, it being a more tedious task that I calculated upon. — Had Ann up in the evening as usual. — Took walk in evening with Ann to see Providence and Episcopal Chapel, Grays Inn Lane, and returned by 9 o’clock.”

Sunday 27th September 1846

Breakfasted and started quarter before 8 o’clock for Bromley in Kent, through Lewisham and that way. Arrived there half past 11 and looked about the town and afterwards the churchyard, and took down a few inscriptions most remarkable. Had dinner at the ‘Rose and Crown’, and sallied back to burial ground and fortunately met with the sexton, who let me in the church and very obligingly turned up some of the matting to show me the flat stone with the inscription on Dr Johnson’s wife, composed by himself (which sight I should have lost but for the civility of the sexton, a circumstance I should have much regretted). Met with an inhabitant of Bromley who showed me several things, viz the College for Clergyman’s Widows, which we went over, and the Bishop of Rochester’s Palace.  Left Bromley few minutes before 5 o’clock and arrived home half past eight. Met Mr Weaver near Bromley in a cart (from whom I learnt that Mr Bond will shortly leave his premises, the railway company requiring the ground for the enlargement of the terminus).”


[Editor’s note: No entry on 28 September]

Sunday 20th September 1846

“Started half past 7 o’clock for Edgware, where I arrived at half past ten. First place went to – Whitchurch – strolled about the burial ground an hour, taking down sundry inscriptions from tombstones into scrapbook. Went in the church during sermon, and afterwards was shown over the church by the clerk.  It is most beautifully decorated with painted walls and ceiling, all scriptural pieces. Then he showed me the Duke of Chandos’s family vault, over which is the marble monument of the Duke and his two wives, with sundry other branches of the family, and underneath is the coffins (48 in number) of the Brydges Chandos family (upwards 90 years) which is now extinct. The vault has been built 130 years and is sound as when first built. The most curious of all is a coffin with two bodies in it – a mother and daughter as I was told – the size whereof was tremendous, in appearance more resembling a coal barge than a coffin. It is elm, covered with black velvet, and finished with brass furniture; inscription on lozenge brass plate was dated 1761. The oldest date I saw was that of a child died 1704. This job cost me 6d, but I was highly gratified.  Dined at ‘The Old Boot’, Edgware (bread and beef). Afterwards went in burial ground of Edgware Church and then in the church, took down inscriptions from two brasses, 1599 and 1632, then back again to Whitchurch and viewed the same over as I did in the morning, more lengthened, and with this addition – I saw the public vault which was piled with coffins thickly and irregularly. Picked a few blackberries and afterwards made for home sharply, where I arrived shortly before 8 o’clock, having walked about 25 miles. Left Edgware just before 5 o’clock. ‘Remark’: Poor old Granny Shepherd this day is the same age as Dr Samuel Johnson was when he died, viz 75 years 3 months 6 days.  Had cup of tea at coffee shop, Dean Street, opposite Little Dean Street, to read Dispatch.”


[Editor’s note: No entries on 21 or 22 September]