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Document number: 499
Date: 17 Sep 1808
Recipient: FEILDING Elisabeth Theresa, née Fox Strangways
Author: TALBOT William Henry Fox
Collection: British Library, London, Manuscripts - Fox Talbot Collection
Collection number historic: LA08-010
Last updated: 1st September 2003

Rottingdean <1>

Septbr 17 1808

My dear Mama

bathing goes on very well with me I have only bathed twice the history of the Jews is very amusing we say half or a little bit of the catechism. Charrington’s home is at Brighton he went last Saturday for a week & Enderby for 10 days. I am as far as Mus Modo Vulgus in <2d?> line of the 65th Page I will give you some pretty lines I found in a book –

the Shepherds evening Song

to thee, great painter of the smiling plain

to thee, the swelling note of pray’r shall rise

ye sighing zephyrs catch the grateful strain

& bear it trembling to yon distant skies

the purling brook the cultivated hill

the green clad pasture & the chrystal spring

the broad majestic oak the murmuring rill

the works of thine Almighty Lord I sing

turn over

the topmost turret of yon ancient tow’r

the bleating tenants of my charming vale

the silent moon the breezy wisp’ring bow’r

& waving groves shall listen to the tale

how charming is the rosebud in it’s prime

how grateful is the soft descending show’r

how glows the virgin Lily smells the thym<e>

how sweet the scent of every blushing flow’r

where e’re I turn I see thy goodness spread

on every rising hill & sloping dale

eternal bounty rears it’s golden head

then let me muse thy praise for words would <pale?>

it is very pretty so put in the Gentle <river?> book put in my account book Gun 1d whip 6d drawing of the automaton at Maillardet’s <2> & going to Maillardet<’s> 2d send me some stinsford <3> Beer

Your affectionate son

W. H. F. Talbot

Lady E Feilding
Coombe Farm


1. Rottingdean, East Sussex, 4 mi SE of Brighton: WHFT attended school there from 1808–1811.

2. Jean Henry Nicolas Maillardet (1745–1830), famous watch maker who in the early 1800s became a traveling showman and exhibited mechanical pieces.

3. Stinsford, Dorsetshire, 2 mi E of Dorcester.

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