Dr Johnson & Mrs Thrale's Tour in North Wales, 1774


Dr Johnson & Mrs Thrale's Tour in North Wales, 1774

Adrian Bristow

ISBN 1-872424-49-X

In the summer of 1774 Dr Samuel Johnson and his close friends, Mr and Mrs Thrale, travelled into north Wales, accompanied by the Thrale's eldest daughter, Queeny. Their journey had two purposes. Mrs Thrale wanted to take possession of her family estate of Bachygraig, which she had recently inherited, in the Vale of Clwyd. She was also particularly anxious to show Johnson the splendours of north Wales where she had spent much of her early life. The previous year, Johnson had travelled widely in the Scottish Highlands and Western Isles with Boswell and his appetite for travel remained keen even at the age of 64. Their expedition to north Wales eventually turned into a tour lasting well over two months.
Both kept diaries of their travels, though neither was meant for publication, and Mrs Thrale's is a very lively and caustic account of their tour. In this book their diaries are accompanied by extensive notes on places, persons and houses visited, and are illustrated by prints, photographs and sketch maps of their wanderings. This is the first time that these diaries have been published together in this form.

148pp, 149 x 210mm, softback, illustrated

Author's Profile
Adrian Bristow was educated at St Olave's Grammar School, London and Skinner's School, Tunbridge Wells. After service in the Royal Navy, he returned to Queens' College, Cambridge where he read English. After a period in teaching he went into further education and in 1961 became principal of Newton-le-Willows College of FE in South Lancashire and in 19166, of Chester College of FE. During his career he wrote and lectured widely on aspects of further education and in 1970 wrote the seminal book Inside the Colleges of Further Education. He retired in 1981 to live in Chester. His detailed account of the Battle of Aubers Ridge, 1915 was published in 1995.

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