William Hone to John Cam Hobhouse, 24 December, 1821: An Electronic Edition

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William Hone to John Cam Hobhouse, 24 December, 1821.1-TEI-

My Dear Sir,

I had the pleasure of receiving two letters from you respecting Mr Stoddart—the last enclosing Mr Barrow's letter to Sir Benjamin, which I have shown to Stoddart, and, to my surprise he is not only willing to get out in a Convict Ship, but anxious to secure a passage by your means. — I have a letter from him today informing me that Mr Place will second my application in his behalf — After the trouble you have taken I have little question of your endeavour further — for his means are decreasing with his stay here, and his wife being 'as women wish to be who love their lords,' he desires that her confinement should take place in 'the flourishing Colony' at V. Diemen's land for economy's sake— I enclose Mr. Barrow's note.

The Printing Press 'works well'— Sardanapalus — 'God Save the King' — 'Cain,' a mystery, published by John Murray! Lord Byron must come in for his share of the Quarterly cat — but the dogs cannot say that his Lordship is a 'dastard.' It is curious enough that we have had no piece upon this model. I believe, since the invention of printing, and that when 'Cain' was announced I had received two proofs from the printer of specimens of eight of the Coventry Mysteries founded on Books in my Apoc New Test. from which I made extracts at the British Museum the summer before last, and I am now publishing them in illustration of that work.

In the old fashioned way I wish you a pleasant Christmas and a happy new year — 'tis pleasant in the hall when beards way all' and I am pagan enough to be fond of the holly and the ivy. Mr Whitbread, to whom I have not the honor to be known, is too much of an Englishman I imagine to let 'New Custom' drive out 'old Custom' in his part of the world, and though I am a great puritan and mean to ask him for a sight of the Tinker of Bedford's Bible I see[? - paper torn][?] no sin in eating mince pies at Christmas — but not upon compulsion — for that would be 'symbolizing with AntiCht' — Do you know that in Abyssinia they administer plumb-pudding for the sacrament — the plumbs are the blood, and the batter the flesh — I know not whether they believe in 'the real presence' but the Priest feeds the devout communicants with a Spoon.

I am My dear Sir
Yours most faithfully
W Hone

John Cam Hobhouse, Esq. M. P.
Southill Park

British Library, Add. MS 36459, ff. 95-96. [return]
William Hone. Date: 2014-03-23