William Hone to Joseph Hone [brother], 11 April, 1827 — An Electronic Edition

[1780-1818] - [1818-1824] - [1825-1832] - [1832-1842] - Hone Correspondence

William Hone to Joseph Hone [brother], 11 April, 1827.1-TEI-

22 Belvedere place Southwark
11th April 1827
My dear Joseph

The first letter I received from you was a few weeks ago—I cannot now lay my hand on it to name its date—but you referred me in it to to [sic] yours to Father, wherein you had written fully—this is the only one I have had, & I gather from you that you have had none from me. I have written you twice—long & particularly—I don't wonder at your complaining of having been sick of writing, & receiving no answer—I was sick in the same way myself—My last was in February or March 1826. It now appears that there have been miscarriages each way.

I have only a few hours notice from Mr. Kennedy. He[?] goes out as clerk to Mr. McCleland who takes your pro-tempore office of Attorney General—2 & thus, through him, have only time, from annoying pressure, to assure you that I have rejoiced abundantly & sincerely at your progressive welfare. Concerning myself my direst dread has been realized—I have been more than a twelvemonth in the Rules of the Kings Bench3—Suits, Arrests, and Executions finally dislodged me from Ludgate hill, and so suddenly that my downfall was a stun to myself even. Since then I have labored to retrieve somewhat of my affairs for the benefit of the creditors, & this is my present occupation, for every thing in the shape of property I instantly transferred in trust for their use. How long I shall be here I know not, & to talk of prosperity in such a situation is absurd—add to which my faculties are not what they were.

As regards our father & mother your beneficial remittance to them has been in deed, & in truth, a "God's-send" — Father is slowly, very slowly recovering from an illness which I think was of a paralytic nature, and therefore at his age most dangerous. My full conviction is that he will never again be able to return to business — his mind is weak. I have only hinted at this to mother, for I know not how to break it to her openly and, to be plain, I think it better to tell this to you, considering what you have done, than to alarm her who has wonderfully kept up. It is as much as I can possibly do to struggle on any how with the family who are with me here, & considering all things, tolerably comfortable—yet, were I at liberty, I am convinced it would be long (if I could ever at all) before I could render them the least assistance. The large family is a heavy burden. I fear to write or even think on the subject.

Indeed, now, I must conclude as I am at the utmost verge of the hour for sending this to Mr. Kennedy — I understand Mr. McCleland obtained appointment through Mr. Plunket the Irish Attorney General. As soon as I have ridded[?] off some hurrying matter, I will write you by Post.

[closing and signature are missing from the MS.]

State Library of Tasmania, W. L. Crowther Library, Tasmanian Archive and Heritage Office, Two Manuscript Letters from William Hone..., shelfmark: #C12094, ff. 2-3. [return]
Hone's brother Joseph had emigrated to "Van Diemen's Land" (Tasmania) in late 1823. He rose to positions of prominence in the legal profession, serving even as Attorney General in a temporary capacity. [return]
Hone had been arrested for debt in April of 1826. (See letter to John Childs, 24 April, 1826.) As a result, he was now living "within the Rules of King's Bench Prison"—the "Rules of King's Bench" was the designation of a few streets and residential blocks immediately surrounding the prison itself. Debtors like Hone were sometimes required to stay within this small area while they worked off their obligations. Hone's current address, Belevedere Place, was immediately to the east of the King's Bench Prison. [return]
William Hone. Date: 2014-04-05