It oonsisted the merest notes in a pocket-bode. "We drank tea at Mr. Bronte's, ' is one day*s item, and "" Mr. Bronte and Mrs. Morgan drank test bene,"" is another; and so on through the five years. Mr. Bronte is seen as a most sociable in- dividual, and constant records of tea-drinking are noted. On July 26, 18 16, we learn that "Miss Branwell returned to Penzance," so that we know from this and from no other source that she was in attendance on the young mother when Charlotte was bom. From one entry we learn that Miss Firth had a mind of her own in literature. " Read Old Mortality. Didn't like it," she says in her diary. But she is kinder to some of Sir Walter Scott's later books.
It is to Miss Firth alone that we are indebted for the actual dates of birth of all the Bronte children. On January 17,1820, we find the announcement of another accession to the Bronte family. This was the day that Anne was bom. In that month also the record, '' Gave at Anne's christening, one pound." Altogether, one sighs over the fact that Mistress Elizabeth Firth was not a more voluble person. One real glimpse of Mrs. Bronte as she impressed a sister woman, one vivid picture of these years relative to the birth of Charlotte or Emily, one saying of the poor mother pitilessly hurrying to her doom, would have been pathetically interesting. Two months after Anne's birth we find the entry, " Mr. and Mrs. Bronte came to dinner," and so it seems that both husband and wife had their share of social life in those days, to say nothing of the companionship of the sister from Penzance.
Mr. Bronte, it is true, took the Haworth services from February, but it is clear that he left his family behind him then as the guests of the Firths, at Kipping House. As a stalwart walker, the journey to and fro could never have troubled him. His visits to Thornton continue to be recorded in Miss Firth's diary many times during this year 1820. charlottebronte