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Lot 497
UPCOTT, WILLIAM (1779-1845, antiquary and autograph collector)

£ 400 - 600
US$ 500 - 750
UPCOTT, WILLIAM (1779-1845, antiquary and autograph collector)
AUTOGRAPH LETTER SIGNED ('W Upcott'), to Miss [Elizabeth] Adkins at Ravenstone Mill, c/o Mr T. Humphries, at Olney, Buckinghamshire, and apparently someone for whom Upcott entertained some hopes and expectations, a long letter of explanation for his inability to visit her immediately, occasioned by the absence of the Principal of the London Institution ('broiling with heat - and smothered with Smoke in the middle of August...'), which has necessitated his own attendance there, and expressing the hope of being able to renew his plans in the near future, giving details of other excursions ('...my sister at Newbury...[whose] Scamp of a husband is not with her...') and envy at the reception of his friend Gosden by the Adkins, mentioning news of her from a friend, 'A Man of the World LIKE MYSELF' ('...after toasting the Maid of the Mill, he says you blushed when he mentioned my name to you - Oh Fye - Miss Betsey - you must not tell tales...'), asking her for a letter ('a comforter'), stating that he needs the comfort of her family ('...to cheer me in this unlooked for trouble...if Sally dont pity & feel for me - but does her Sister Betsey - perhaps she may tell me in her next letter...'), and signing himself off as 'your unfortunate - disappointed - but still affectionate W Upcott', 4 pages, folio, integral address panel, trace of wafer seal, manuscript and stamped postal markings, small tear where opened, 'Tuesday night - past time - August 1813

Footnotes

  • Upcott never married. Fragments of six letters by him to Elizabeth Adkins are at Harvard. Upcott was the illegitimate son of the painter Ozias Humphrey and Delly Wickers; the T. Humphries of the address might have been a relative of Upcott.
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