‘A de luxe edition’: praise for The Diary of Mary Hardy

In a long review, in a top academic journal, the Burnham Press four-volume edition of The Diary of Mary Hardy is described as “a de luxe edition”.

G.M. Ditchfield, Emeritus Professor of Eighteenth-Century History at the University of Kent, gives a very detailed account of the Diary, with its companion volume The Remaining Diary of Mary Hardy 1773–1809. He describes the set as ‘a most impressively professional edition’, and concludes:

“On account of the handsome appearance and the painstaking thoroughness of the edition, the cost of the four diary volumes plus the Remaining Diary can be considered a real bargain at present-day book prices.”

The review reflects on Mary Hardy’s significance as a diarist. Her record is ‘One of the most consistent, enduring and revealing primary sources of its period’.

The concluding paragraph begins:

‘This is a source which illuminates much of the social as well as the topographical landscape of its time, revealing the possibilities of upward social mobility in the agricultural and proto-industrialising world of the later eighteenth century.’

Professor Ditchfield’s review contains not a single criticism.

The academic journal: the first in its field

The full text of the review is published in printed form and online in the February 2015 edition of the English Historical Review, the oldest journal of historical scholarship in the English-speaking world. Founded in 1886, it is published six times a year.

Full details of where to find the review are given in the Diary Reviews pages.

Read more articles

Margaret Bird

Margaret Bird in 2016

The editor and author of the Mary Hardy volumes

You can read about the historian Margaret Bird on the link above

See inside…