The Remaining Diary of Mary Hardy 1773–1809

This supplementary volume to the four-volume edition The Diary of Mary Hardy 1773–1809 is also edited by Margaret Bird and is published by Burnham Press.

168 pages · paperback  |  297 x 210 mm  |  7 b/w illustrations · 2 figures · colour covers

ISBN 978–0–9573360–5–6  |  April 2013

price £18.00   + £3.00 UK post and packing

The FRONT COVERS of the complete series of Mary Hardy volumes are pictured on the Home page.

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The missing entries

The Remaining Diary contains the remainder of Mary Hardy’s diary text (162,000 words, or 44 per cent) written during the Letheringsett years 17811809. These are the entries omitted from Diary 2, Diary 3, and Diary 4.

Diary 1, written at Coltishall 17731781, contains the diarist’s unabridged text.

This supplementary material is intended to be read only in conjunction with the other Diary volumes. That way the missing entries make sense. The four hardbacks can however be read and enjoyed without recourse to The Remaining Diary.

The transcription follows the same editorial method as in The Diary of Mary Hardy. Unlike the other Mary Hardy books published by Burnham Press this volume has very few illustrations and is without annotations, bibliography or index.

Accessing the full diary text

This book will appeal to family historians and to other researchers. These include specialists such as climatologists and historians of the home, who need access to the full database potential of each daily entry.

Some of the usefulness of Mary Hardy’s manuscript is lost in the process of abridgment. Only by reading the complete record can a researcher carry out systematic analysis.

Many matters spanning the years require methodical treatment:

  • The daily weather reports
  • The progress of an illness
  • The frequency of washing the household’s heavy linen
  • Changing patterns of church and meeting-house attendance
  • The names of the preachers
  • The full Sunday school sessions attended by the diarist
  • The complete record of family, professional and social calls and of visits elsewhere

Some snippets

References such as these demonstrate the usefulness of having access to the full text.

On shoring up the cliff face beside the Crown at Sheringham; and on problems over Anglican attendance:

“A close cool day. Mr Hardy went to Sheringham morning 11 [11 am] to look at the repairs doing at the cliff, came home evening 9 . . .”

“A very fine warm day. I and William Girling went to Briston meeting afternoon. William went to Dalling [Field Dalling] Church afternoon, no service there, no service at our church.”

(Mary Hardy, 7 August 1788, 30 June 1805)

A passing reference by William Hardy in his wife’s diary to the rebuilding of the King’s Head at Letheringsett; William Dobson was innkeeper:

“A cold dry day . . . Wife very poorly but a little better towards evening. Mr Walker dined here. Workmen building Dobson’s house.”  (William Hardy, 10 March 1808)