Letters & Diaries

Peter Paul Dobree on Cadiz, Spanish ladies, and politics, 1811

A letter from Peter Paul Dobrée, (1782-1825), who was born in Guernsey and became Regius Professor of Greek at Cambridge University in 1823. In 1811 he had visited 'Don Pedro' (Peter Carey) Tupper, the Guernsey-born and immensely wealthy British consul in Valencia. The illustration of Cadiz is from Sir John Carr's Descriptive travels in the southern and eastern parts of Spain and the Balearic isles, in the year 1809, London: 1811, in the Library collection.

April 1891: The Candie Library

A series of letters to the Star, beginning April 16, 1891.  Percy Groves, the first Librarian and relative of Osmond Priaulx, was notorious for running the Priaulx Library—then known as the Candie Library—as a private fiefdom. He was taken to task for this by Osmond Priaulx's old friend and collaborator in the creation of the Library, Amias C Andros. Those days are long gone, we are proud to say; we use the front door now (although admittedly, it was originally the back door!) and have excellent drains, and our visitors can enjoy all the wonderful views from the House!

100 men lost: HMS Boreas, 28 November 1807

James Saumarez' account of the loss of the 28-gun frigate Boreas, wrecked on the Hanois rocks on November 28th, 1807. This disaster was one of the major factors in the eventual decision to erect a lighthouse there. The number of men who died is uncertain; 77 were saved. Captain Robert Scott's wife is also said to have been drowned. From Cobbett's Political Register, Vol. 12, 1807, p. 928.

A bachelor's paradise: Guernsey ladies, October 1825

An extract from an article published in the Star of October 18, 1825. 'The observations that follow have been copied from The Morning Herald. They will tend to show what views some strangers are apt to form of our local peculiarities; if, indeed, they can be taken as the real views of the writer, which, from the incorrectness of his statements, and the exaggerated description he has given of advantages and disadvantages, beauties and defects, we more than doubt.' The young lady in the portrait is Anne Priaulx.1

It's 1681: what's on the menu in Guernsey?

Three letters from Sir Thomas Browne, polymath and oyster expert. He wrote often to his children, of whom he seems very fond. His favourite daughter Elizabeth married his friend, Captain George Lyttleton, who was appointed Guernsey's Lieutenant-Governor in 1681. There is a copy in the Library of one of Browne's works, Pseudodoxia epidemica, published in 1686, which can be viewed upon request.

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