Sloperton, September 25h
Thank you, my dear Talbot, for your notices from and of the Pells.<1> I should not ask a better Clerk of them than yourself (as far as I am concerned) seeing that you know exactly the sort of things I should wish extracted from them. I had a visit, however, yesterday from a great Publisher (coming to offer me £ 1500, which alack, I cannot accept) and, on my mentioning the work to him, he undertook to get it for me, saying, what I hope is true, that it does not extend beyond two volumes.<2> When do you all come down? I trust soon – as I long, though at the same time, tremble to see Lady Elisabeth.<3> My best love to her and your sisters. <4>
Ever truly yours
Henry F. Talbot. Esqre
31 Sackville Street
1. The Clerk of the Pells was an officer of the Exchequer who kept records from the 12th to the early 19th centuries. They were originally on parchment rolls, called pells (from pellis, skin) and pipe rolls (because they were rolled up in the form of a pipe). The Public Records Commission published 4 volumes in 1833 and 1844. Moore probably wishes to consult the most recent publication.
2. Richard Bentley of New Burlington St, London, offered Moore £1500 for a three volume light Eastern tale, set in Circassia.
3. Lady Elisabeth Theresa Feilding, née Fox Strangways, first m Talbot (1773–1846), WHFT’s mother had recently lost her husband Rear Admiral Charles Feilding (1780–1837), Royal Navy; WHFT’s step-father.
4. Caroline Augusta Edgcumbe, née Feilding, Lady Mt Edgcumbe (1808–1881); WHFT’s half-sister, and Henrietta Horatia Maria Gaisford, née Feilding (1810–1851), WHFT’s half-sister.
5. Constance Talbot, née Mundy (1811–1880), WHFT’s wife.
6. Rev William Lisle Bowles (1762–1850), Wiltshire poet & antiquary. He would soon publish the Annals and Antiquities of Lacock Abbey, in the County of Wilts, with Memorials of the Foundress of Ela Countess of Salisbury, and of The Earls of Salisbury of the Houses of Salisbury and Longspe; including Notices of the Monasteries of Bradenstoke, Hinton, and Farley (London: John Bowyer Nichols and Son, 1835).