About Ed Pope History
Hello I am Ed Pope, this is my site. It is free and open access information in a fairly narrow field of history. It is a dictionary of biography of (mostly) little-known people living 1750-1850, mostly round London, England. It is skewed towards a world of radical, progressive, artistic, bohemian or scandalous people, contains very few of the labouring classes but more the minor characters of the gentry and middling classes. It contains the up-to-date notes of my ongoing research. Please feel free to add information in the comment boxes. Please acknowledge my site if you publish information gleaned from it, and if that makes you rich please send me a present.
Currently this site is undergoing some changes. Up till now it has been mainly an appendix of notes to the Godwin Diary website (GD website), and will make more sense to you if you first visit that site <godwindiary.bodleian.ox.ac.uk>. There are several thousand unidentified persons recorded, often just by surname, in the diary (1788-1836) of William Godwin. I began by submitting corrections to the editors of that website, but a backlog built up (because they were academics with other duties and I am a full-time amateur researcher). I am working through the diary largely in date order, and there are currently entries here for all people mentioned in the diary up to the end of 1805 and not clearly identified on the GD website (even for the few I have little or no info on). There is also additional information here about some people who are correctly identified on the GD website, and now I'm starting to add entries about other contemporaries not recorded in Godwin's diary. You will be able to filter these into different datasets, some of which will be introduced by background articles, but for the moment you should ignore the filter box on the A-Z of Names & Addresses page. The best way to use my site for the moment is to have the GD website on another tab and flick back and forth, and if you have access to the Dictionary of National Biography online, have that on a tab too.
Some abbreviations & sources.
DNB - Dictionary of National Biography. I don't usually repeat information already available in DNB or on GD website, but I give the reference to DNB when referring to someone covered there. DNB is usually available in hardback and online at major public libraries.
1796 list - see GD website <godwindiary.bodleian.ox.ac.uk> - and my entry "the 1796 list" - the 1796 list is an important tool for identifying entries in Godwin's diary
adv - Godwin used this (short for Latin advenae) to mean people who happened to turn up somewhere
PCC - Prerogative Court of Canterbury. These wills are indexed online at <national archives.gov.uk> go to Records / Our online records / scroll down page to Wills & Probate / Wills 1384-1858 / scroll down page to search box. You can read the wills for £3.50 each or free if you go to the National Archives building at Kew (it can be hard to read legal scrawl)
Marriages: = means married, otp means of this parish, sp means spinster, bach means bachelor, wid means widow or widower; by lic means by license; wit or wits means witness or witnesses. Most London marriages in this period can be seen in original on Ancestry website, available for free at many public libraries and record offices. Originals are useful for identification as the witnesses are often family members or close friends, and the signatures of bride, groom & witnesses can clinch an identification where the name is common
Sun F means Sun Fire Insurance records, originals at Guildhall Library, but many can be found free online at <nationalarchives.gov.uk> go to Catalogues and Online Records, then Access to Archives / or go to London Lives website which covers different years. Both those searches cover lots of other records as well
SCI & LCS Society for Constitutional Information and London Corresponding Society, two radical societies suppressed by Pitt's government in the 1790s. The SCI was more for gentlemen and the LCS for tradesmen and artisans
Alum Ox & Alum Cantab the volumes which record all the students of Oxford & Cambridge universities. Short for Alumni Oxonienses & Alumni Cantabridgienses (Latin)
Abinger Go to Bodleian Library website> Finding Resources > Special Collections Catalogues > Online Catalogue of Western Manuscripts > Abinger, and you can read for free online in scanned originals lots of Godwin's correspondence which I refer to in this website
Searching this website
I recommend you click on A-Z of diary entries or on diary entries by year above and hone in on what you are looking for. The date used is the first entry of that name or person in Godwin's diary, or something equivalent for people who don't appear in the Godwin's diary. Or you can enter a name or any string of text in the search box (if it's not on this page click on 'About this site' above) and you should get a list of results with named entries at the top, followed by entries where the name or word occurs in the full text. When searching for a person's name it is best to search by surname only (names are in the format Smith, John as in most biographical dictionaries). You could also search for a date as a text string, the format I'm using for dates in the text is (e.g.) 24.7.1795. I've added entries where Godwin has used a different spelling (as in Hey, see Hay) but where he has abridged the spelling (as in Thelwal for Thelwall), which he usually did, I have just used the full spelling.