18 Jun 1834
Richard Bevan Esq
Rev. Fred’k Bevan
June 18 1834
My dearest Love,
I have just had the happiness of receiving your letter. It is a great comfort to me to know that you have performed your journey northwards safely. I trust the same gracious God who has thus far protected you will bring you back to your home in peace. I hope dear Bess is better. The air does not seem to produce coughing, though violent exercise does. Last Sunday she broke loose from her nurse & it was some minutes before they could catch her again. She coughed a good deal Monday & yesterday but seems pretty well again today. I do not allow her to go out without nurse or myself. The air here is delightfully mild, & there are so many sheltered walks close by that if this west wind lasts she will I hope soon get quite well. Dora looks the picture of health, Charlie is beginning to feed like other people tho’ she will not touch meat, but she breakfasts here with me & the children- Poor baby is very fretful from her teeth I suppose & is quite fallen away but she eats heartily (I have of course forbid any meat) & does not seem to ail in other respects. I am quite well thank God & have not been so well for months past. My spirits rise as time passes. Next week I hope to have the greatest happiness the world could afford me. The Henfield coach leaves London so early that I have been thinking whether you had not better go to Hickstead or Brighton as I could easily drive over after the Henfield coach has passed it & found it did not bring you, as it passes our house about a 1/4 before 3. It leaves the White Horse Peters Lane 1/2 after 8. & calls at the Blue Boar Piccadilly. But as it comes by Richmond it makes quite a long journey- Henfield by Horsham is 47 miles from London- There is an excellent cross road Mrs Pattenden says from here to Hickstead 6 miles - & you might stop if you come by a Hickstead coach at Albourne which is about a mile & half nearer- so I doubt whether you had better come by the Henfield coach.
Perhaps you have seen in the newspaper an account of the terrible storm at Brighton on Saturday last. 66 panes of glass were taken in our house by the hail, & yet we escaped with less damage than many of our neighbours. Spittle says all the outside blinds that could be pulled down were, otherwise the destruction would have been much greater. I am thankful we were not there on Bessie’s account. Indeed I should think the house can hardly be habitable. I wrote immediately before particulars arrived to have any damage we might have sustained repaired as soon as possible. Spittle writes me a word that the wind continued so high yesterday that they had been able to replace very few panes. Today it is milder so I hope they are getting on - In our front nursery 17 were broken. Dora’s room 3 – Georgies 6 – Front attic 10 - Drawing room 3 - Dining room 4 - our bed room 6 - your dressing room 6 - a little one over the street door. Housekeeper’s room 3 - Pantry 4 - Kitchen 2 - Scullery 1 - The Guests had 74 broken & Spittle says from the Old Steyne up to Kemp Town there is scarcely a window left- in the Crescent almost every pane of glass in every window- The thunder & lightening the most awful she ever witnessed- I have written to them very particularly to take care the rooms do not get damp, & particularly to light a good fire in my bed room on account of the clothes and pictures.
We had a severe storm in this neighbourhood Monday eve’g. Baugh bought me a strip of wood about 12 ft long all in threads like a hemp stalk which the lightening had torn out of a tree by the turnpike gate- And now I think you must have heard more then can be agreeable to you about the storms & I will turn to more peaceful subjects - I think you will not regret the dissenting meeting you put a stone to, when you hear the doctrines preached at Church - The vicar is an old man, & from the manner in wh he read the prayers I should hope religious - He seemed very much in earnest too in his sermon but one can hope for no good piece to follow his preaching - It was the old story that sincerity of purpose would be accepted for defection of duty through the merits of Christ - I would go to meeting but hope I should be shifted there. Your India rubber pen puzzles me. But there seems to be no end to its capabilities. India Rubber Pans, oil, cloaks, laces!! Charlie hopes you will bring her a pussy cat from London. As you may not perhaps have time to get her one I will get one for you to give her. The old lady who was so civil to me is Mr Borrer’s aunt & I should very much doubt from all I hear of her whether he had desired her to be civil to me. As I hear she is such an officious troublesome lady that none of the gentry will visit her. She very much annoyed me by applying to the Clergyman for a seat in his pew but as I knew nothing of the matter till she left his note of assent I could only submit to be led to Church by her & placed in my seat. She also (without my mentioning the subject) offered me some asses milk daily- one of the Mrs Borrer has a donkey for a sick child who does not consume its produce. This affair she managed in the same way. However as I was ready glad of the milk for Bess I have accepted it, but have desired Mrs Borrer’s servant on no account to keep it for us if at any time there should be a deficiency or if they know any friend or poor person to whom it might be useful- my comfort is that she seems so well known they will not suppose these impertinencies come from me. I can hire a riding donkey for 1/ a ride. The owners a man & his wife are both sick. The man has been ill for years. If we have the donkey twice in the day I shall pay 6d for the second ride. We may keep it as long as we please - I address this to Carlton Rode as I conclude you will be there on Friday - Pray remember me very kindly to your brother & Mrs Fred’k - Take care of yourself & do not fancy you can walk as far as your father with the foot you have been nursing so long - Should you “hurry home” next week you must let me know what day you purpose coming & by what route also if I shall not write again. I propose D.T. to write on Saturday as the post leaves on Sunday you would get it on Tuesday - Do not grudge me a few lines now & then - You have been very good hitherto - Dora was much pleased with your P.S and read it nicely - The text is always the first thing said in the morn’g God bless you my beloved husband & make you a blessing & believe me ever you most affectionate wife C.B-