Catalogue Finding NumberSH:7/ML/E/10/0018
Office record is held atCalderdale, West Yorkshire Archive Service
TitleDiary page
Description[Diary Transcription]

‘I have puzzled very often since I came here’ (Ramsbury) ‘to make out how it is that I am so much more agreeable
‘to other people when you are not by, than when you are ……… I am not aware that I ever felt it till lately,
‘and I verily believe it arises from your admiration of Miss Maclean … — I know that her manners, her style, her connections
‘in life, are all what you best like — In everyone of these I feel my inferiority — I know that you compare every other
‘with her, that she is ever before you, therefore I shrink (from the knowledge I have of myself) from any situation which may lead
‘to a comparison, it makes me different and restrained before you, because I fear to do anything, or to say anything that Miss
Maclean would not say or do — Here then the enigma is solved, and I am better for having brought to a certainty doubts
‘which have long danced in my mind — Is not the cause sufficient to justify the effects? Surely yes — there is a secret
‘feeling which makes us desire to be first in everything with the sharer of that secret and we may blindly believe we are
‘so till our eyes are opened by that 2nd self who alone can undeceive us — till you knew Miss MacLean I had
‘no powerful rival ….. I do think she had merit sufficient to attract your notice and regard — I myself admire and like her,
‘and would not if I could that you should love her less — she may be a great comfort to you some of these days to come, and I am
‘happy to think you have so efficient a friend ……. etc. etc. vide page 2 — again (vide the 1st end) I am glad you
‘have heard from Miss MacLean — her letters always give you pleasure. ‘She is the only friend who never gave you pain’ —
‘Why? she is the object of the only friendship you ever formed — we have seldom reason to quarrel with friends’ — Mrs. Belcombe
writes to M- [Mariana] ‘Mrs. Duffin has really conducted herself with the greatest propriety — dresses handsomely and as she ought to do —
‘ has no airs or nonsense, and rides in her own carriage with as much ease as if she had been seated there all her life —
‘and as for dear old Duff — he looks so happy — so delighted — so contented that it is worth the trouble to walk to Micklegate
to see their mutual unbounded happiness — there seems little chance for William Milne — he is anxious to get to Scarborough — Mrs.
Belcombe thinks they shall not be able to get him there — Poor π [Mariana] there is something like jealousy in all this about
Miss Maclean after all she is a little afraid of me well perhaps ’tis all right she feels she is not quite all
my fancy could portray of good she will be less arrogant and is more likely to be really satisfied with my hus
bandlike powers than Mrs. Barlow who is after all very warmly passioned at heart ~ After dinner wrote all the
above of today except the 1st 2 lines, which took me from 8 20/60 to 9 1/2 — Very fine, cold day — went to my room at 10

Friday 17
7 5/60
11 25/60
Came to my room at 8 1/4 — finished dressing — sat down at my desk at 8 3/4 — Breakfast at 10 20/60 — read the whole of Galignani—
At my desk again at 11 40/60 — before and after breakfast till 6 writing the summaries of 1824 adding up each set of summaries
for the year, and making out my account with M- [Mariana] resolved to put it on a new plan, and take the £125 3 per cents from the 5th
of January last, immediately after her having received the dividend, at 81, the then market price being below 80 — but she bought in in August 1822
at 80 5/8 — these accounts of mine are very tedious — but surely I shall get through them in time, and, when I have once got them to my
mind, I will try and keep them so — Dinner at 6 5/60 — came into the salon at 7 10/60 — wrote the above of today — the porter’s
wife came at 8 20/60 and staid till 10, at which hour came to my room — fine cold day — speaking of taxes last night
the porter’s wife said they were diminished of late — this house used to pay 1,600 francs a year — it now pays
about 1,200/. There is a tax on all windows and entrance doors — windows she thinks ab ten centimes each — doors
according to their size — a porte cochère [carriage porch] pays more than a common small entrance door — here the grille (iron railing that fences off
the court from the street) pays because it opens and lets out carriages that way when there is a large party so that many
carriages come — she does not know the exact amount of the contribution foncière (sort of land tax) the furniture tax is
according to the value of the furniture and the patent for keeping an hôtel garni is in every case, 400 francs a year —
I think this furniture tax (I could not make out certainly) is perhaps only paid on the furniture in an hôtel garni — I must inquire about
this — her husband had an estate 75 perches de terrain (vineyard and wood) near Marle which he lately sold for 850 francs but ought
not there is a tax for the new bourse, all which taxes (contributions) are collected every 3 months —

[margin text:] Fahrenheit 50° at 8 3/4 a.m.
51 1/2° at noon
54° — 3p.m.
53° — 7 1/2 p.m.
52° — 10 p.m.
fire lighted at noon

to have had 1000/. — he had sometimes paid 24/. contribution foncière when the rent he received was only 37/. but the
locatire had surely cheated them — the contribution foncière levied so much per arpent whether be the land
what it may — what said I whether good, bad or indifferent — oh! yes— if not good for vines, it was good for bled
or légumes or something — seeming to think the value of the land all the same — at least, that it was all good for
growing something or other — people whose house is not worth 100/. a year pay no taxes for it — all wine pays 60/.
per cask d’entrée (into) Paris) — they could get wine that they should think sufficiently good at Marli for 35/. per
cask — it must pay 60/. d’entrée — just as much as the finest wines pay — if government was to alter this, and make
the duty according to the quality of the wine, the rich would drink the common wine to pay less duty — the barriers here
and elsewhere are merely on account of the douane, and this is bringing in much to government — Napoleon restored the system — just
because then all pay alike according to their consumption — the rich do not escape as they used to do before the revolution
when neither nobles nor clergy paid any taxes — the porter now gives 130/. per cask for wine (very fair Bordeaux)
and there are about 250 bottles in a cask, i.e. about 10 1/2 sols a bottle (10 10/25 sols exactly) — I pay for the
‘Macon vieux’ very good wine the servants drink 21 sols a bottle and have 5 sols returned for each empty bottle —
I should therefore save 5 1/2 sols a bottle were I to do as the porter does —

Saturday 18
7 35/60
11 3/4
Came into my room at 8 1/4 — finished dressing — wrote the last 23 lines of yesterday — all which took me till 9 40/60 —
then read Galignani — breakfast at 10 10/60 — turned to my accounts of 1825 and added up the first 3 or 4 ppages — had a fiacre
went out at 12 1/2 — called on Madame and Mademoiselle Droz (rue Caumartin No. [Number] 10) and sat an hour with them — saw also M. Droz
who sat with us the last 1/4 hour or longer — Madame Droz asked if I had seen Mrs. Heath — I said no — I did not know much
of her — I had only met her at Madame de Boyve’s, and the meeting at a pension was not always sufficient introduction —
this led to speaking of Madame de Boyve said I meant to say nothing against herself though I thought her foolish ever to abuse
those whom she had had in her house — the only fault of with [her] which I found was that if one went there with a bad character
one could not make it better— if with a good one ran great risk of making it worse — I had never been in a
pension before and did not quite like the liability there was of meeting all sorts of society — as for the gents [gentlemen] said I did
not understand — those whom I did understand were generally not worth understanding — Madame Droz mentioned Monsieur St. Aubin
as one of the 1st sort — Monsieur Droz looked and spoke as if if he did not like him — Madame Droz said he had the same opinion of Madame de Boyve’s
society as myself — I said I had heard much depuis mon départ [since my departure] — the few English gents [gentlemen] comme il faut [of polite society] who had
been there, said they had met ladies there who were not society for ladies who cared much on the subject — and in
fact Madame Droz knew this was sometimes the case — there had been several there with whom one would not wish
to associate — e.g. Mrs. Disney among the rest — Madame Droz had before mentioned the Middletons — but of this I had taken no
notice at all —said I had seen Madame de Boyve in the gardens — had a friend with me who wished to see her, and therefore
I hunted her out, and she was looking handsome — but, of course, I had not spoken to her — Madame Droz asked if she had
bowed — Oh! no said I —‘Perhaps she did not not know you’ — oh! yes — she knew me very well — I care nothing
about her — ’Tis not on my own account but on Mrs. Barlow’s who, if she had staid there, must have lost her
character and to whom I think Madame de Boyve behaved very ill — worse than foolery — all this Monsieur Droz heard —
[illegible] while on the subject of Mrs. Heath and introductions said I only knew Madame Droz and Mrs. Barlow of all those I had met at the de Boyves’, and
those I had known more intimately while there — Madame had been ill — and so had I and Madame Barlow — ‘avait eu mille petit
soine pour moi’ [had had a thousand little treatments for me] I should always be grateful to her for her attention — Know not how I should have done without it
she got me my dinner and everything for Cordingley could not have so well managed this — Monsieur Droz said nothing — Of course if there be

[margin text:] Fahrenheit 51° at 8 1/4 a.m.
52° at 11 p.m.

fire lighted at 8 20/60 a.m
DateNov 1826
Extent1 page


ReprodnNoteThis transcript has been created to allow keyword searching within our online catalogue. A full transcription (marked-up to show extended abbreviations and highlighting all coded extracts) can be found as a pdf version at the volume level entry SH:7/ML/E/10. Every attempt has been made to ensure the accuracy of this transcription, however, researchers are advised to check against the original diary images before quoting from the transcriptions. We are also happy to receive any corrections to improve the accuracy of the transcriptions if they are found. Further editing will also take place once the project nears completion. For further information about the transcription project see the Anne Lister Diary catalogue entry at SH:7/ML/E.
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