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

dinsdag 16 december 2014

Houses and family of George Smith.

Smith and Elder was founded in 1816 by George Smith (senior) (1789-1846) and Alexander Elder.  Both were born and raised in Scotland, but had moved to England to pursue opportunities in the publishing industry.  Their first publication registered with the Stationer’s Company was Sermons and Expositions of interesting portions of scripture by the Revd Dr John Morison.
In 1824 Smith & Elder moved from its original premises in Fenchurch Street, London, to 65 Cornhill, an address that was to give its name to the company’s magazine.  A third Partner was added and the business took on the permanent name of Smith, Elder & Co.  1824 also marked the birth of Smith’s first son, also named George Smith, who was later to take over the business from his father. nineteenth_century_literary_manuscripts
Photo: 65 Cornhill

 George Smith, one of the great Victorian publishers, whose lists at one time or another included most of the notable writers of the day, apart from Dickens. The firm of Smith, Elder had been founded by his father in 1816, but he had begun to take charge at the onset of his father’s fatal illness in 1844. The firm’s doomed attempt to promote G. P. R. James as a potential best-seller was an embarrassment behind him when his reader handed on enthusiastically the manuscript of Jane Eyre in the autumn of 1847. From then on he managed Charlotte’s literary and financial affairs with commitment, tact and, after the meeting of July 1848, personal warmth. From the early days of the relationship Charlotte realized that the favors worked both ways, and that she was Smith, Elder’s first big success in the league of major publishers: “it would chagrin me” Charlotte wrote to Smith about the third edition of Jane Eyre , which she had feared might hang fire, “to think that any work of ‘Currer Bell’s’ acted as a drag on your progress; my wish is to serve a contrary purpose . . .” (7 Nov 1848). A year later she could tell Ellen “I am proud to be one of his props” (19 Dec 1849). Her early descriptions of him focus on his appearance: “a distinguished, handsome fellow” (to MT, 4 Sep 1848) she calls him, and “elegant, handsome . . . pleasant” (ibid). blackwellreference

George Smith (1824-1901); his mother, Elizabeth Murray Smith (1797-1878); and his wife, Elizabeth Blakeway Smith, the daughter of a London wine merchant who George Smith married in 1854. Mrs Gaskell described her (to EN, 9 July 1856) as George’s “very pretty, Paulina-like little wife. ( Pauline one of the figures in Villette)

Smith lived at , having bought the lease from Lady Hermione Graham, a daughter of the twelfth Duke of Somerset. The house became known as 40, Park Lane.[3]
The lease continued in his family until 1915,[8] his widow remaining living there until May 1914, but in 1906, negotiations began for the redevelopment of the Somerset House site together with Camelford House.[10] The 2nd Duke of Westminster, as freeholder, was uneasy about allowing the two demolitions, "having regard to No. 40 having historical associations", but in the end he agreed to the scheme. Camelford House was demolished in 1913.[11] When Mrs Murray Smith left she claimed that the house possessed "vaults with chains in them", including a cell said to have been used for prisoners being taken to Tyburn, but when this was investigated by the Grosvenor estate surveyor, Edmund Wimperis, he found nothing of the kind.[1][12] 
Somerset House (No. 40): Warren Hastings and the 11th and 12th Dukes of Somerset[1]

He died at St. George's Hill, Byfleet, Surrey on 6 April 1901.
Photo: property/st-georges-hill/byfleet-road
Children of George Smith.
His son was George Murray Smith the Younger   George Murray Smith DL JP (4 February 1859 - 18 April 1919) was a chairman of the Midland Railway from 1911 until his death. He was educated at Harrow School; and Jesus College, Cambridge. In 1885 he married Ellen Strutt, youngest daughter of Edward Strutt, 1st Baron Belper. They had three sons, two of whom were killed during World War I, and a daughter. He was appointed a deputy lieutenant of Lancashire in April 1903.[1]

After 1894 Smith did leave the main control of the business in the hands of his younger son, Alexander Murray Smith (who retired from the partnership in 1899), and his youngest daughter’s husband, Reginald John Smith (1857–1916), who from 1899 was sole active partner and who, in 1908, rearranged the original 66 volumes of the Dictionary of National Biography into 22.  britannica

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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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