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To Mrs Wentworth at Sir William Wentworth’s House at Bretton Near Waikefield Yorkshire I won’t think of excusing my fault of being so very Long in Dear Mrs Wentworth’s debt but own it with shame & trust to your good nature alone for a pardon. in yours you mention seeing me in the Spring if I am so happy it must be in London we having no thoughts of the <..th>. Miss <Dye> Condon writ her sister word they were in great affliction to part with you at York the Town had been so taken up with Pollitics, divertions has been but scarce, the Princess Looking every day to be brought to bed has prevented any Ball at Court except this on her Birthday, she Masqueraded at <Mountigue> House has made all the Lady’s Long for another, but I fancy, the Tryalls at westminster Hall will give folks full employment, tis said the rest of the <condem’d> Lords will impeach & so be pardon’d poor Lady Derwentwatter has miscarried my Lady Kenmure has kept her bed ever since her Lord Sufferd & has not bread to eate, the extraordinary comet I suppose you had in the country if not you have had several accounts of it for my part I saw not much of it many people thought the day of Judgment come but I seeing nothing frightful was in no apprehentions, Mrs Condon is still with us & I hope we shall keep her a month or two but her mother grows very impatient for her we both have often wish’d to see Dear Mrs Wentworth who I sincerely value & am her very Humble Serv’t L <Skipwith> I am Sir William’s Humble Serv’t. My Mother & Mrs Condon are so to you both [annotated on reverse:] Sir William Wentworth once paid his Addresses to this Lady
The letter is not dated but reference to the trials of Lords Kenmure and Derwentwater and the inference that their executions had taken place (24 Feb 1716), and to a comet (possibly the particularly bright northern lights of March 1716) and looking forward to the spring suggests a date of late March/early April of 1716. The writer was possibly the wife or daughter of Sir Fulwar Skipwith, an MP until 1715. Mrs Wentworth could not have been Diana Blackett for she did not marry Sir William until 1720 but possibly his mother Elizabeth, nee Osbaldeston.