Deans Leaze <1>
Thursday 30 Nov
My dear Henry
I have not with me the letter in which you told me what books you wanted but I am almost certain – you did not mention Xenophons Anabasis, <2> or I should have sent it. I think by this time you will have tried your Flannel waistcoats, or your susceptibility to cold must be very different to mine – if you find them too large, it is only having them washed once or twice – I leave this tomorrow for Bowood <3> how long to stay I do not exactly know, or whether I shall go to Penrice <4> by Cheltenham or not – at all events direct to me always in Sackville St <5> & my letters will be forwarded regularly – I am very anxious to hear of your having found a Poney for I think bodily exercise as necessary for you as mental. Christopher’s <6> alarm at Harrow <7> was occasioned by the Boy who slept in his Room firing a Pistol in his Face in the dark – which frightened him excessively – Dr Butler <8> was very
sorry angry & put the Boy into another Room – & was very attentive to Kit – but you know your Aunt Mary <9> is not very communicative & this lame account is all we have ever been able to extract from her. I am very glad you like Revd Barnes’s <10> preaching – I have He has written me a letter about you which has given me great satisfaction as being evidently the production of an honest sensible man – I think he will do his duty by you & if he does, you could not be better placed – I like his choice of books for you & all his ideas about you – I wish there was more game for you to shoot as it would give an interest to your walks but if you get your Poney that will be amusement for some time – write to me often my dear Boy, & tell me what you think & what you read – I hope you are happy.
Henry Talbot Esqre
Revd T. Barnes’s
1. Deans Leaze, Dorset.
2. The Xenophon ( ca.430–355 BC), Greek historian, wrote of the military campaigns in which he served as a young officer. His best-known book, Anabasis, tells of the march and retreat of the Greek auxiliary army in the service of the Persian prince Cyrus, who was trying to overthrow his brother, King Artaxerxes II. [See Doc. No: 00674].
3. Bowood House, nr Calne, Wiltshire, 5 mi NE of Lacock: seat of the Marquess of Lansdowne.
4. Penrice Castle and Penrice House, Gower, Glamorgan, 10 mi SW of Swansea: home of Christopher Rice Mansel Talbot.
5. 31 Sackville Street, London residence of the Feildings, often used as a London base by WHFT.
6. Christopher Rice Mansel Talbot (1803–1890), immensely wealthy landowner, mathematician & politician; WHFT’s Welsh cousin.
7. Harrow School: WHFT attended from 1811–1815 and his son Charles from 1855-1859.
8. Rev George Butler (1774–1853), Headmaster at Harrow.
9. Lady Mary Lucy Cole, née Strangways, first m. Talbot (1776–1855), WHFT’s aunt.
10. Rev Theophilus Barnes (1774 –1855), of Castleford.
11. Castleford, Yorkshire, 10 mi SE of Leeds, where WHFT went to school from 1815-1816.