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Preface: To The Reader

Home
An Introduction
What Celia Sees
An Introduction by the Hon. Mrs. Griffiths
Preface: To The Reader
Wiltshire and Dorset
Bath via Warminster
Berkshire and Oxfordshire
Hampshire, Berkshire and Surrey
Moving to London
Buckinghamshire, Oxford and Chichester
To Herefordshire
Hampshire and......
Hampton Court
1697 Tour: London to Yorkshire
1697 Tour: York and Scarborough
1697 Tour: Hull to Chatsworth
1697 Tour: The Peak District
1697 Tour: Coventry to London
1697: Through Kent to Canterbury and Dover
1697: Tunbridge Wells and Rye
1698 Tour: London to Bury St Edmunds
1698 Tour: Cambridge to Lichfield

As this was never designed: soe not likely to fall into the hands of any but my near relations, there needs not much to be said to Excuse or recommend it. Som. thing may be diverting and proffitable tho' not to Gentlemen that have travelled more about England, staid longer in places, might have more acquaintance and more opportunity to be inform'd. My Journeys as they were begun to regain my health by variety and change of aire and exercise, soe whatever promoted that Was pursued; and those informations of things as could be obtein'd from inns en passant, or from some acquaintance, inhabitants of such places could ffurnish me with for my diversion, I thought necessary to remark: that as my bodily health was promoted my mind should not appear totally unoccupied, and the collecting it together remain for my after conversation (with such as might be inquisitive after such and such places) to wch might have recourse; and as most I converse with knows both the ffreedom and Easyness I speak and write as well as my deffect in all, so they will not expect exactness or politeness in this book, tho' such Embellishments might. have adorned the descriptions and suited the nicer taste.

Now thus much without vanity may be asserted of the subject,. that if all persons, both Ladies, much more Gentlemen, would spend some of their tyme in Journeys to visit their native Land, and be curious to Inform themselves and make observations of the pleasant prospects, good buildings, different produces and manufactures of each place, with the variety of sports and recreations they are adapt to, would be a souveraign remedy to cure or preserve ffrom these Epidemick diseases of vapours, should I add Laziness? -it would also fform such an Idea of England, add much to its Glory and Esteem in our minds and cure the evil Itch of overvalueing fforeign parts; at least ffurnish them with an Equivalent to entertain strangers when amongst us, Or jnform them when abroad of their native Country, which has been often a Reproach to the English, ignorance and being strangers to themselves. Nay the Ladies might have matter not unworthy their observation, soe subject for conversation, within their own compass in each county to which they relate, and thence studdy now to be serviceable to their neighbours especially the poor among whome they dwell, which would spare them the uneasye thoughts how to pass away tedious dayes, and tyme would not be a burthen when not at a card or dice table, and the ffashions and manners of fforeign parts less minded or desired. But much more requisite is it for Gentlemen in gl service of their country at home or abroad, in town or country, Especially those that serve in parliament to know and jnform themselves ye nature of Land, ye Genius of the Inhabitants, so as to promote and improve Manufacture and trade suitable to each and encourage all projects tending thereto, putting in practice all Laws made for each particular good, maintaining their priviledges, procuring more as requisite; but to their shame it must be own'd many if not most are Ignorant of anything but the name of the place for which they serve in parliament; how then can they speake for or promote their good or Redress their Grievances ? But now I may be justly blamed to pretend to give acc: of our Constitution, Customs, Laws, Lect, matters farre above my Reach or capacity, but herein I have described what have come within my knowledge either by view and reading, or relation from others which according to my conception have faithfully Rehearsed, but where I have mistaken in any form or subject matter I easily submitt to a correction and will enter such Erratas in a supplement annext to ye Book of some particulars since remark'd; and shall conclude with a hearty wish and recommendation to all, but Especially my own Sex, the studdy of those things which tends to Improve the mind and makes our Lives pleasant and comfortable as well as proffitable in all the Stages and Stations of our Lives, and render suffering and age supportable and Death less fformidable and a future State more happy.

CELIA FIENNES.

Celia Fiennes, Through England on a Side Saddle in the Time of William and Mary
(London: Field & Tuer, The Leadenhall Press, 1888) pp.

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