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Stand 52
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Peter Hill

Travel, art, classical archaeology, literature.

Yorkshire Country House Account Book

Account book from Temple Newsam. 1749 1749


16pp manuscript in contemporary wrappers, recording the household expenditure of the Irwin family. Some indication of the writer's character, presumably the housekeeper, can be gleaned by three entries on Feby. 8th which reads: " Lent my Lady Irwin 1/-, ditto, ditto," the careful entry of each loan suggesting a ready Yorkshire caution. The real interest of the record lies in the prices paid for food and other commodities during the reign of George II: a turkey then cost 3/-; chickens 1/6d each whilst a quarter of a hundred oysters were only 6d. Laraks (larks for pies) were 1/8d for an unknown quantity.
Two more entries record: "For a bath(tin)-2/4d" and "Chaire glass-1/-", this apparently to repair a broken window in the Sedan chair.
At the end of one week's accounts is the rather winning confession "Three shillings forgot."
Apparently living in a grand country house was not without anxiety, as this last entry suggests-"For a pistol lock-6d.,for powder and balls-1/-."


Contemporary brown paper wraps