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Document number: 7380
Date: 02 Apr 1857
Recipient: TALBOT William Henry Fox
Author: BADCOCK Robert Gibson
Collection: British Library, London, Manuscripts - Fox Talbot Collection
Last updated: 16th February 2012

The Elms Taunton
2 April 1857.


As the dawn of Etymological enquiry is broken, particularly by the works of the Dean of Westminster, and many persons are being led to investigate the origins & history of words, and to arrest them in their flight to obscurity, I hope I may be excused the liberty, after diligent perusal, to suggest the publication of your English Etymologies in a cheap & popular form. Your are pleased to call your work “a small contribution toward the history of the English Language” and as such if it were printed so as to be within the reach of the many, & especially of our middle & national Schools I think it would be as generally useful & acceptable, as from the cost & size it is now inaccessible & rare.

The luxury of writing for the enlightened & refined, with a view only to the suffags [sic] of Scholars may suit better the tastes of pure lovers of learning, that the exercise of the literary craft in general, including the improvement of only our minds, but an enlarged benevolence might induce such an one to yield up to fastidiousness and that without fearing the imputation of throwing pearls before swine, & to accommodate his books to the popular means of purchase –

I hope you will pardon these remarks from one, who is entirely a stranger & deserves no right to address you, except a Kindred love of etymological research

I have the honor to be, Sir your obedt Servt
R. G. Badcock

H. Fox Talbot Esq

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