London Life in the XVIIIth Century

By M. Dorothy George | Go to book overview

NOTES TO CHAPTER V, PARISH APPRENTICES AND POOR CHILDREN
(1)
An Account of the General Nursery or College of Infants set up by the Justices of the Peace for the County of Middlesex . . . 1686.
(2)
Hanway in 1766 singles out St. Clement Danes for special condemnation. Its first workhouse was not opened till 1772 or 1773 so that it continued the old custom of putting out children to nurse. In nine months the parish officers had entrusted twenty-three children to Mrs. nurse Poole; two of these had been discharged, three were still alive, "departed out of this transitory life after breathing the vital air about one month, eighteen . . ." For "this piece of service to the parish" she had been paid two shillings a week for each child. An earnest Appeal for Mercy to the Children of the Poor, p. 139. See also Chapter I. and Appendix No. II.
(3)
Cf. the arrangements made by Moll Flanders for lying-in at Bath; she passed as the wife of an absent Sir Walter Cleave. Moll Flanders, 1721.
(4)
In 1699 one of the overseers of St. James, Westminster, was ordered by the Sessions to return to "Mrs. Jane Northgood and Mrs. Margaret Tressilian £10 in money and a velvet scarf, unjustly exacted by him as security to the parish respecting a child since dead whom he unjustly alleged to be a bastard." W. J. Hardy, Middlesex County Records, p. 200.
(5)
Laws concerning the Poor, 4th ed. 1720, p. 82.
(6)
"Some vestries indeed are more barefaced and even make a trade of a parish. I mean those churchwardens and vestries who lump it with harlots and whoremongers and take bastards off their hands at so much per head for which they get a good treat from two guineas to five according to the circumstances of their chap, which they call sadling the spit, besides a good sum with the bantling, which 'tis to be feared is entirely sunk, all being done by connivance." Parochial Tyranny, 1727, p. 19.
(7)
Hanway, An earnest Appeal for Mercy to the Children of the Poor, 1766, p. 39.
(8)
C.J., 8th Mar. 1715-6.
(9)
Burrington, An Answer to Dr. William Brakenridge's Letter . . . 1757, p. 23.
(10)
The "governess" of Moll Flanders was a London midwife who had a lying-in establishment, "the sign of the cradle" and had given security to the parish for children born in her house.
(11)
Cf. the Ladies' Memorial praying for a charter for the Foundling Hospital ( 1739): "No expedient has yet been found out for preventing the frequent murders of poor miserable infants at their birth, or for suppressing the inhuman custom of exposing newly-born infants to perish in the streets, or the putting out such unhappy foundlings to wicked and barbarous nurses who undertake to bring them up for a small and trifling sum of money, do often suffer them to starve . . . or if permitted to live, either turn them into the streets to beg or steal or hire them out to loose persons by whom they are trained up in that infamous way of living and sometimes are blinded maimed or distorted in their limbs in order to move pity and compassion and thereby become fitter instruments of gain to those vile merciless wretches."
(12)
The Case of the Parish of St. Giles in the Fields. . . . See also The Case of the Parish of St. James, Westminster, as to their Poor and a Workhouse designed to be built for them.

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