Item #58059 Three-page autograph letter signed "J. N." to his sister Miss Norris at Baker Street, Portman Square, London. John Norris.

Three-page autograph letter signed "J. N." to his sister Miss Norris at Baker Street, Portman Square, London

Paris: rue du gros Chenet, Feb 10, [17]88. 4to, 58 lines, approx. 600 words, address panel and wax seal on integral leaf with Paris postmark; previous folds, small tear in fore-edge of integral leaf from opening (no loss) all else very good. Norris thanks his sister for a "kind letter" and a box received with contents which he summarizes. "Emma is always grateful for the least token of remembrance. I never dreamt my dear sister to put you to the expense ... When you talkt of engraving for Wedgewood [sic] I concluded you might have had an engraving made of brass or some common metal, but never could I have imagined you had bespoke so elegant a seal which is exceedingly well engraved, & would have answered more than sufficient without the Wedgewood's [sic]. I am convinced it must have cost you several guineas. I will lay aside the necessary & have it neatly set. I have some hopes the setting of my old seal may be made to do. The flesh brushes as well as the other are perfectly good. The pamphlet of Bellendenus entertain'd me mightily; it is perfectly well written, and whoever is the author, he has an amazing fund of knowledge in the Grecian & Roman Histories. Mr. H[orne] Tooke who certainly does not want infinite parts has not shewn them in his production on the supposed marriage, which notwithstanding what he asserts I trust does not exist in reality... "You wonder how I used so many shirt buttons, indeed I have a cargo by me, but they so ill treat the linnen here at the wash, that a button sometimes does not last two washings. You will be suprised when I tell you I expect two doz: of shirts from Ireland thro the means of my friend Mr. Waulfe; the linnen in this country is amazingly increased in price, & decreased in goodness; when I was in Flanders to meet my poor friend Luther I bought a piece of linnen with the money you were so good to send me by him, which piece I had no reason to complain of, it cost me 5 livres (a livre is about ten pence English), an Ell, & last year I bought a piece here at the same price, & the shirts are already worn out... "I am concerned at the rebuff Mr. Aylmer has met with, is he much connected with the present Ld. Fortesque? We spent a fortnight together at Geneva ... & at parting he expressed a sincere friendship for me..." John Norris (1740 - after 1806), of Hemsted, Kent, was a member of Parliament for Rye 1762-74, and Captain of Deal Castle 1766-74. By 1770 he was deeply in debt; he sold his estates and after losing his seat in Parliament in 1774, was forced to go to the Continent. A letter of his written in 1800, and using the same signature form (initials J.N.) as in the present letter, is evidence of his continuing need for money (BL Add MS 41665, f. 100). "Mr. Norris is unfortunately a great dupe ... to the sex," wrote Richard Cox to William Ward, Norris’s steward, "and has such attachment to women of no character as is extraordinary." His first wife was the famous Kitty Fisher, Sir Joshua Reynolds’s model; his second had been divorced for adultery with Norris, for which he had to pay £3,000 damages. John Horne Tooke (1736-1812) is the well-known radical politician and philologist. Luther refers to John Luther, MP from Essex 1763-1784 who died early in 1786. The "pamphlet of Bellendenus" is either Praefationis ad tres Guliemi Bellendeni libros. De statu, editio secunda [by Samuel Parr], 1788; or, A free translation of the preface to Bellendenus [by Samuel Parr] containg animatyed strictures on the great political characters of the present time [by William Beloe], 1788. Item #58059

Price: $250.00

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