On this day

23rd March 2014

On 24 March 1697, Henry Prescott ate dinner with a Mr Leftwich and then went for a walk around the fields near Chester. He then met with two booksellers called Minshall and Hodgson to discuss the possiblity of forming a lottery. Since he never mentioned the project again in his diary, it presumably came to nothing. Prescott was an official of the local ecclesiastical court and his diary is packed with the names of local people whom he met and interacted with. The month of March 1697 includes references to Mr Thane, Mr Boucher, the Chancellor of the Consistory Court, Henry Sachaveril, Dr Foulk, Mr Fogg and Sir William Meredith. It also contains fascinating details of ordinary life - a couple of days before he dined with Leftwich, Prescott had eaten oysters and ale with Mr Thane and Mr Hulton. There are details of the weather - earlier in the month "a storm falls about Broxton", and endless references to medicines. But it is not clear whether Prescott was sleeping well towards the end of the month because of "a larger dose of Elixir" or more probably because he abstained from ale!

The details of life in Chester can be found in The Diary of Henry Prescott LLB, which wa published in three parts, as volumes 127, 132 and 133, edited by John Addy, John Harrop and Peter McNiven (1987, 1995, 1997). Details of how to buy copies are available here.