Archive for the ‘Handwriting’ Category

“thank you my dear Preceptor”

MARY “POLLY” STEVENSON was grateful for the long letter Benjamin Franklin wrote her justifying the study of insects as part of her education. Wanstead, where Polly was caring for an aunt, was not very far from Franklin’s lodgings on Craven Street in London which he rented from Polly’s mother. Just far enough for the two to rely on letter writing to communicate. Lucky for us. Illustrated are some instructions for writing a fine hand.

Wanstead June 23d. 1760Dear Sir
. . . . You can’t imagine how important I felt to find you thought me worthy so much of your time and attention. I thank you my dear Preceptor for your Indulgence in satisfying my Curiosity, and for the pleasing Instruction you give, which I will endeavour shall not be lost. As my greatest Ambition is to render myself amiable in your Eyes I will be careful never to transgress the bounds of Moderation you prescribe. I have so firm a reliance on your sincerity and regard, that I think, if you imagin’d my pursuit of Knowledge would be detrimental, you would not have given me any encouragement, but have check’d my Curiosity, knowing I should have chearfully submitted to your Judgement.
I regard you as one of my best Friends, and to continue you such is the wish nearest my Heart. I am with the highest Esteem and Gratitude Dear Sir your affectionate and obedient humble Servant
M Stevenson.

“To Benjamin Franklin from Mary Stevenson, 23 June 1760,” Founders Online, National Archives, last modified June 13, 2018, http://founders.archives.gov/documents/Franklin/01-09-02-0044. [Original source: The Papers of Benjamin Franklin, vol. 9, January 1, 1760, through December 31, 1761, ed. Leonard W. Labaree. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1966, p. 125.]

posted January 27th, 2019 by Janet, comments (0), CATEGORIES: Education,Franklin, Benjamin,Friendship,Handwriting,Hewson, Mary "Polly" Stevenson

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