26th February 1825

Recievd a Letter from Lord Radstock filld with scraps of Newspaper Poetry among which was a pretty valentine by Mongomery & some verses said to be written by Lord Byron they are in his manner—the rest after the perusal of the Newspapers are 'nothing'—when his Lordship sees anything he fancys better then the rest he always attributes it to Mrs Emmerson or some of his friends as he has done now one to her & one to Van Dyk

22nd February 1825

A hedge sparrow building its nest in one of Billingss Box trees.

21st February 1825

A robin busy at building its nest in the Garden.

20th February 1825

Found several pieces of Roman pot in Harrisons top close on the hill over which the road crosses to the Tindhills at the north-east corner of Oxey Wood I piece was the lettered & Artis says they are Roman & I verily believe some Roman camp or pottery was made there

19th February 1825

[James Mongomery's grave and monument in Sheffield Cathedral close]

Recievd a Newspaper from Montgomery in which my poem of the Vanitys of Life was inserted with an ingenius & flattering comment past upon it praise from such a person as Montgomery is heart stirring & its the only one from a poet that I have met with—went to Turnills Heath close to get some furzebushes to set in the Garden

17th February 1825

Saw a large bunch of blue violets in flower & a root of the Bedlam cowslip

16th February 1825

[Swordy Well in 2008]

Heard the Skylark sing at Swordy Well saw a piece of bayonet & gun barrel found while digging a stone pit this proves the story that superstition tells of a battle fought here by the rebels in Cromwells time—it is said were there is smoke there is fire & I often think were superstition lingers with her storys there is always some truth in them—brought home a bush of Ling or heath to plant in the garden

15th February 1825

Heard the blackbird sing in Hilly Wood recievd a Valentine from Mrs Emmerson my Anna is some¬thing better

14th February 1825

Wrote to Vandyk & Dr Darling in my letter to Van Dyk I inserted the tune of' 'Peggy Band' there is a many beautiful tunes to these provincial ballads such as the 'White Cockade' 'Wars Alarms' 'Down the Burn Davy' old & new 'Thro the wood Laddy' 'Dusty Miller' 'Highland Laddie' & a very beautiful one I forget the title it begins 'A witherd old gipsey one day I espied who bade me shun the thick woods & said something beside' but the old woman that sung it is gone the old 'Guardian Angels' 'Banks of Banna' & a thousand others.

13th February 1825

Recievd a letter from Dr. Darling an odd sort of fellow came today with a bag full of old school summing books wanting me to buy them & vowing he was the author of them & that I might make a good bargain by publishing them what odd characters there are in the world the fellow fancyd that was excessive ignorant to palm such ignorant impudence upon me for truth after he found his scheme would not take he begged pence & departed he is the son of an odd fellow at Baston he is a little foolish by nature & they put him a long while to school to compleat what she began—my dear Anna taken very ill

12th February 1825

Receivd a letter from Van Dyk in which he appears as the Editor of my Poems they chose who they please this time but my choice comes next & I think I shall feel able to do it myself he wishes me to alter the title of my song written in imitation of Peggy Band to Peggy Bland because the old ballad is bad I did it in memory of the music & shall not alter it

11th February 1825

Saw the first young Lamb this season — saw a blue violet on the Ivy bank next the lane in Billings Close

10th February 1825

Fine day the bees are out & busily seeking for wax among the little flowers of the yellow acconite — a sparrow is building its nest in a hole in the old wallnut tree in the Taylors' garden

9th February 1825

Went to Stamford today with Patty in great distress to Dr Cooper I have set it down here to see if I shall live till 1829 to see it again I fear not but so be it I am not my own maker.

7th February 1825

Greatly distressed today & uncommonly ill O what a blessing is health we know not how to prize it till we loose it Dr. Darling restored me to health but my foolish follys has compelled her to leave me again & I fear for ever

6th February 1825

Recievd a letter from Mrs Gilchrist — heard by Ned Simpson of Stamford that a bird of the hawk kind was shot at a fountain in Holly well Park of a large size which he calls the 'hair legd falcon' Heard by the same of a white mole being caught in Stamford field.

Read in the Examiner the Bankrupt of W. Baynes & Son so there goes £5 which I was to have had for writing in the Amulet

4th February 1825

The first winters day a sharp frost & a night fall of snow drifted in heaps by a keen wind — there has been a deal of talk about the forwardness of this season — but last season was not much behind — on the third of this month I found an hedge-sparrows nest in Billings Boxtrees before the window with 3 eggs in it I lookd again in March & found 2 young ones pen-featherd starved to death she laid again in the same nest & brought off a fledged brood in April Recievd a joint letter from Lord Radstock & Mrs Emmerson under a Frank which was put into post too soon for which a charge of 1py was made — Knaves in office watch chances as the cat watches mice & are of that species of animal that catch their prey by supprise Recievd a letter from Dr Darling

3rd February 1825

Recievd a letter from Hessey with £5 enclosed & a parcel containing 2 Nos. of the new series of London Mag, and Walladmor a German - Scotch novel if Job was living now he woud stand a chance to gain his wish 'O that mine enemy woud write a book' for this is the age of book making — & like the small-pox almost everybody catches the plague

2nd February 1825

Went to walk in the fields & heard Word bells chiming for a funeral when I enquird I found it was for poor old John Cue of Ufford a friend of mine with whom I workd some seasons at turnip-hoeing for which he was famous he knew my Grandfather well & told me many rec-colections of their young day follys John Cue was once head Gardener for Lord Manners of Ufford Hall — he was fond of flowers & books & possessed a many curious ones of the latter among which was Parkinson

1st February 1825

A beautiful morning took a walk in the fields saw some birch poles in the quick fencing & fancyd the bark of birch might make a good substitute for Paper it is easily parted in thin laiers & one shred of bark round the tree woud split into 10 or a dozen sheets I have tryd it & find it recieves the ink very readily