I've dreamt in my life dreams that have stayed with me ever after, and changed my ideas: they've gone through and through me, like wine through water, and altered the color of my mind.
Emily Bronte
Wuthering Heights

zondag 7 juli 2013

The Nussey Family

Ellen Nussey was a friend of Charlotte Bronte. She was born in 1817. She was the daughter of John Nussey and Ellen Wade. Ellen Nussey attended Roe Head School where Margaret Wooler was headmistress, and where she met Charlotte Bronte. Ellen Nussey died in 1897.

Nussey was the twelfth child of John Nussey, a cloth merchant of Birstall Smithies, near Gomersal in the West Riding of Yorkshire, and his wife Ellen, née Wade. Nussey first attended a small local school before progressing to the Gomersal Moravian Ladies Academy. Nussey and Brontë first met in January 1831, when they were both pupils at Roe Head School, near Dewsbury in Yorkshire. They corresponded with each other regularly over the next 24 years, each writing hundreds of letters to the other.

Richard Nussey was born in 1803. He was the son of John Nussey and Ellen Wade. Richard Nussey married Elizabeth Charnock. Richard Nussey Inherited uncle Richard Nussey's interest in the family's mills at Birstall: also leased New Mill, Holbeck. Later inherited father-in-law's two mills at Meadows lane, Leeds. He was; said to have built Brookroyd House.1 He died in 1872.

Joshua Nussey was born circa 1799. He was the son of John Nussey and Ellen Wade. Joshua Nussey died in 1871.

Sarah Walker Nussey was born in 1809. She was the daughter of John Nussey and Ellen Wade. Sarah Walker Nussey died in 1843.

George Nussey was born in 1814. He was the son of John Nussey and Ellen Wade. George Nussey died in 1885. vivientomlinson

Children of John Nussey and Ellen Wade

      The Rydings (Birstall)  
      Ellen Nussey`s first home

    Ann Nussey  Later Clapham (1795–1878), eldest sister of Ellen Nussey; a capable housekeeper for Revd Henry Nussey, and later for the family at Brookroyd. Charlotte Brontë appreciated her sympathy at times of ... oxfordreference/Nussey

    When Ellen Nussey died (26 Nov 1897 aged 80) it is said that people were surprised at how liitle she had to leave. William Carr had invested her (and her sisters) money (left to them by her brother Richard) in Pennsylvanian Railway Bonds - these were left to her nephew John Thomas Hartley Nussey in Australia.
    It shows Ellen Nussey (1817-1897) and two of her brothers (John 1794-1862) and William (1807-1862) who were both apothecaries archiver.rootsweb.ancestry

    Nussey, John (1793–1862):

    Eldest brother of Ellen, and London general practitioner and apothecary. He was early successful under the aegis of his cousin (and eventual father-in-law) Richard Walker, and he was apothecary to George IV and his two successors, being in attendance (in the next room) during some of Queen Victoria’s numerous confinements. Ellen made two long visits to him in 1834 and 1837, probably to help with the family rather than to sample the pleasures of London. The picture that emerges of him through Charlotte’s letters (and we must remember that we have no documents in which the lesser Nusseys speak for themselves) is of a selfish, grasping man who fails to honor his family obligations and is especially neglectful of his mother and sisters. She sees him as of "the world" and "cold-blooded" (to EN, 10 and 17 Sep 1851), and she included his wife Mary in this judgment: "Madame herself thought fitting to call, very stately in her carriage" she wrote to Ellen (28 Jan 1853) during her last visit to London, indicating confidence in a shared opinion. There is much comment on John in letters of mid-1849 when he proposed a financial arrangement whereby his sisters would will their property to him or his heirs and in return he would cancel debts they owed him ("offers to relinquish a present claim in your sisters’ favour" is the phrase of Charlotte’s that suggests this arrangement, rather than a compensating

    Nussey, Mary (Mercy) (1801–86):
    Sister of Ellen. She was for a time a member of the Moravian Single Sisters’ House at Fairfield, where she was given the name Mercy. See Margaret Connor, "Clerical Connections" (BS, v. 28, p. 1, March 2003) for the Moravian sisterhood. Charlotte’s early references to her are more affectionate than most of her references to the Nusseys, and at one point she seems to have aroused Ellen’s jealousy by trying to start an independent correspondence with her. Later, however, the mentions of her conform to the norm by being tinged with exasperation: she distrusts her judgment, regrets that she rather than Ellen has most to do with George in his time of mental breakdown, and concludes that the trouble she causes others springs from "the wilfulness of a weak person" (to EN, 11 May 1850). This irritation leads her to her most extreme judgment: "I suppose that is her use – to test and try others like a fiery furnace" (to EN, 10 May 1851). She was the family fowl-keeper, taught in a small school, and was frequently ill. Juliet Barker presents as fact that the "forty-one years old" Mercy (she was actually 48) was "so jealous of her elder sister’s good fortune that she threatened the happiness of the whole household" (Barker, 1994, p. 602). This is unfair, resting only on a conjecture of Charlotte that she had "some little sense of bitterness" that Ann rather than she was to be married

    Nussey, Richard (1803–72):
    Brother of Ellen, he helped to run the family firm, moving to Leeds when he married Elizabeth Charnock (1846) to live in her family home in Woodhouse Lane. Charlotte, who had met him on the Bolton Abbey excursion of 1833, describes him and his wife as " very vulgar in their mode of shewing their feelings" (to EN, 20 Sep 1851?). He inherited his father-in-law’s mills in Leeds and, since the marriage was childless and his wife predeceased him, his sisters Ann, Mercy and Ellen benefited from his death

    Nussey, Joseph (1797–1846):
    Second-eldest brother of Ellen, who for a time was engaged in the woolen industry. By the mid-1840s he was described by Charlotte (to EN, 31 July 1845) as a "burthen" on his mother – one that his brothers, particularly John, should have her relieved of. By the time of his death she talks openly of his sufferings being "taken as sufficient expiation for his errors" (to EN, soon after 3 June 1846). The deduction that he was dissolute seems correct, but whether this consisted simply of alcoholism or included other sins is unknown. Clearly Joseph was the Nusseys’ Branwell – one more bond between Ellen and Charlotte

    Nussey, George (1814–85):
    Brother of Ellen. He seems to have been the dearest to her of all her brothers – partly from closeness in age, partly perhaps from his willingness to engage in her interests and her friendships. He is mentioned often in Charlotte’s letters from Roe Head, and he was one of the Nussey party who explored Bolton Abbey and its environs with the Brontës. The onset of his mental illness in the early 1840s was particularly distressing to Ellen, and the fact that he had at this time a fiancée, Amelia Ringrose, cemented a friendship between these two. One element that added to the traumatic nature of this crisis was that George, in his delusions, turned against his family (as his aged mother was later to do when she was ill). This fact was often commented upon by Charlotte: "[h]is delusion is of the most painful kind for his relations – how strange that in his eye affection should be transformed into hatred – it is as if the mental vision were inverted" (to EN, 17 Nov 1846). He never regained his sanity, the engagement was abandoned, and he had to be cared for by outsiders for the rest of his life

    Nussey, Joshua (1798–1871):
    Third-eldest of the Nussey sons, who went into the Church and married in 1832 Anne Alexander, 10 years his senior. Though Ellen stayed with them several times, and took refuge at their Oundle vicarage after leaving the Upjohns, with whom she had contemplated going to live as a companion, she seems to have disliked both of them, and her best friends Mary Taylor and Charlotte joined her in disparaging them. "Is she a frog or a fish –?" asked Charlotte (to EN, 19 Jan 1847?), "She is certainly a specimen of some kind of cold-blooded animal." She returns to her (and Ellen’s) distaste for the pair a week later, for it seems to be them she is talking about when she describes "the coldness, dreariness, and barrenness of these respected individuals’ minds and hearts" (to EN, 28 Jan 1847?). Joshua’s attainments and judgment were similarly disparaged by Mary Taylor


    Brookroyd (Birstall)  
    After the death of Ellen`s father, the family had to give up The Rydings. They relocated to Brookroyd.

    1 opmerking:

    1. Fascinating and informative post , Thank you !

      Nussey, George (1814–85):
      B........ The onset of his mental illness in the early 1840s was particularly distressing to Ellen, and the fact that he had at this time a fiancée, Amelia Ringrose, cemented a friendship between these two

      Of course this was the Amelia who later married Joe Taylor, Mary brother and the mother of "Tim" Taylor so there's quite a bond between this threesome and with CB .

      They become increasingly important in her later life...they are like family really .

      Even without the Ellen connection, both Amelia and Joe went way back with Charlotte ...indepenat of each other and then as a married couple.

      Chalotte traveled to Soctland with them , but the party left quickly because Tim became ill...or so her parents thought

      Amelia is who CB was writing about to Ellen when Arthur saw her letter and the criticism CB employed when speaking of Amelia to Ellen caused him to say CBN's letters to Ellen must be burned !

      Amelia provides an interesting bond between the Nusseys and the Taylors of course. One wonders just how she and Joe met within this circle after her engament to George was abandoned...the scholls days of CB, Mary Taylor and Ellen was the start of the connection


    The Parlour

    The Parlour



    Charlotte Bronte

    Presently the door opened, and in came a superannuated mastiff, followed by an old gentleman very like Miss Bronte, who shook hands with us, and then went to call his daughter. A long interval, during which we coaxed the old dog, and looked at a picture of Miss Bronte, by Richmond, the solitary ornament of the room, looking strangely out of place on the bare walls, and at the books on the little shelves, most of them evidently the gift of the authors since Miss Bronte's celebrity. Presently she came in, and welcomed us very kindly, and took me upstairs to take off my bonnet, and herself brought me water and towels. The uncarpeted stone stairs and floors, the old drawers propped on wood, were all scrupulously clean and neat. When we went into the parlour again, we began talking very comfortably, when the door opened and Mr. Bronte looked in; seeing his daughter there, I suppose he thought it was all right, and he retreated to his study on the opposite side of the passage; presently emerging again to bring W---- a country newspaper. This was his last appearance till we went. Miss Bronte spoke with the greatest warmth of Miss Martineau, and of the good she had gained from her. Well! we talked about various things; the character of the people, - about her solitude, etc., till she left the room to help about dinner, I suppose, for she did not return for an age. The old dog had vanished; a fat curly-haired dog honoured us with his company for some time, but finally manifested a wish to get out, so we were left alone. At last she returned, followed by the maid and dinner, which made us all more comfortable; and we had some very pleasant conversation, in the midst of which time passed quicker than we supposed, for at last W---- found that it was half-past three, and we had fourteen or fifteen miles before us. So we hurried off, having obtained from her a promise to pay us a visit in the spring... ------------------- "She cannot see well, and does little beside knitting. The way she weakened her eyesight was this: When she was sixteen or seventeen, she wanted much to draw; and she copied nimini-pimini copper-plate engravings out of annuals, ('stippling,' don't the artists call it?) every little point put in, till at the end of six months she had produced an exquisitely faithful copy of the engraving. She wanted to learn to express her ideas by drawing. After she had tried to draw stories, and not succeeded, she took the better mode of writing; but in so small a hand, that it is almost impossible to decipher what she wrote at this time.

    I asked her whether she had ever taken opium, as the description given of its effects in Villette was so exactly like what I had experienced, - vivid and exaggerated presence of objects, of which the outlines were indistinct, or lost in golden mist, etc. She replied, that she had never, to her knowledge, taken a grain of it in any shape, but that she had followed the process she always adopted when she had to describe anything which had not fallen within her own experience; she had thought intently on it for many and many a night before falling to sleep, - wondering what it was like, or how it would be, - till at length, sometimes after the progress of her story had been arrested at this one point for weeks, she wakened up in the morning with all clear before her, as if she had in reality gone through the experience, and then could describe it, word for word, as it had happened. I cannot account for this psychologically; I only am sure that it was so, because she said it. ----------------------She thought much of her duty, and had loftier and clearer notions of it than most people, and held fast to them with more success. It was done, it seems to me, with much more difficulty than people have of stronger nerves, and better fortunes. All her life was but labour and pain; and she never threw down the burden for the sake of present pleasure. I don't know what use you can make of all I have said. I have written it with the strong desire to obtain appreciation for her. Yet, what does it matter? She herself appealed to the world's judgement for her use of some of the faculties she had, - not the best, - but still the only ones she could turn to strangers' benefit. They heartily, greedily enjoyed the fruits of her labours, and then found out she was much to be blamed for possessing such faculties. Why ask for a judgement on her from such a world?" elizabeth gaskell/charlotte bronte

    Poem: No coward soul is mine

    No coward soul is mine,
    No trembler in the worlds storm-troubled sphere:
    I see Heavens glories shine,
    And faith shines equal, arming me from fear.

    O God within my breast.
    Almighty, ever-present Deity!
    Life -- that in me has rest,
    As I -- Undying Life -- have power in Thee!

    Vain are the thousand creeds
    That move mens hearts: unutterably vain;
    Worthless as withered weeds,
    Or idlest froth amid the boundless main,

    To waken doubt in one
    Holding so fast by Thine infinity;
    So surely anchored on
    The steadfast Rock of immortality.

    With wide-embracing love
    Thy Spirit animates eternal years,
    Pervades and broods above,
    Changes, sustains, dissolves, creates, and rears.

    Though earth and man were gone,
    And suns and universes ceased to be,
    And Thou wert left alone,
    Every existence would exist in Thee.

    There is not room for Death,
    Nor atom that his might could render void:
    Thou -- Thou art Being and Breath,
    And what Thou art may never be destroyed.

    Emily Bronte

    Family tree

    The Bronte Family

    Grandparents - paternal
    Hugh Brunty was born 1755 and died circa 1808. He married Eleanor McClory, known as Alice in 1776.

    Grandparents - maternal
    Thomas Branwell (born 1746 died 5th April 1808) was married in 1768 to Anne Carne (baptised 27th April 1744 and died 19th December 1809).

    Father was Patrick Bronte, the eldest of 10 children born to Hugh Brunty and Eleanor (Alice) McClory. He was born 17th March 1777 and died on 7th June 1861. Mother was Maria Branwell, who was born on 15th April 1783 and died on 15th September 1821.

    Maria had a sister, Elizabeth who was known as Aunt Branwell. She was born in 1776 and died on 29th October 1842.

    Patrick Bronte married Maria Branwell on 29th December 1812.

    The Bronte Children
    Patrick and Maria Bronte had six children.
    The first child was Maria, who was born in 1814 and died on 6th June 1825.
    The second daughter, Elizabeth was born on 8th February 1815 and died shortly after Maria on 15th June 1825. Charlotte was the third daughter, born on 21st April 1816.

    Charlotte married Arthur Bell Nicholls (born 1818) on 29th June 1854. Charlotte died on 31st March 1855. Arthur lived until 2nd December 1906.

    The first and only son born to Patrick and Maria was Patrick Branwell, who was born on 26th June 1817 and died on 24th September 1848.

    Emily Jane, the fourth daughter was born on 30th July 1818 and died on 19th December 1848.

    The sixth and last child was Anne, born on 17th January 1820 who died on 28th May 1849.

    Top Withens in the snow.

    Top Withens in the snow.



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