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Record 12431

Reading Experience:

Schoolroom for boy prisoners at Tothill Fields: 'At the time of our entry, the warder schoolmaster was hearing the boys read aloud from the Bible, the class standing in a line near the wall, each with a book in his hand. Some of the lads read quickly, and others boggled sadly over the words, as, for instance - "And into whatsoever 'ouse ye enter" - ("Look at it, boy! don't you see there's an h to the word?" cries the warder) - "And into whatsoever house ye enter fust" - ("How often am I to tell you that there's no such word as fust? Spell it") - "f-i-r-s-t", proceeds the lad, "say ye peace be unto this 'ouse" - (What! 'ouse again?") - "house", quickly adds the youngster. The next verse was read off rapidly and glibly enough, by one who seemed but half the age of the other...'
Century: 1850-1899
Date: Between 1 Jan 1860 and 31 Dec 1862
Country: England
Time: daytime
Place: city: London
specific address: Tothill Fields Prison
other location: in the schoolroom
Type of Experience (Reader):
silent aloud unknown
solitary in company unknown
single serial unknown
Type of Experience (Listener):
passive reactive unknown
single serial unknown

Reader/Listener/Reading Group:

Reading Group:boys in prison
Age Child (0-17)
Gender Male
Date of Birth n/a
Socio-economic group: Labourer (non-agricultural)
Occupation: prisoners
Religion: n/a
Country of origin: n/a
Country of experience: England
Listeners present if any:
(e.g. family, servants, friends, workmates)
juvenile prisoners and schoolmaster
Additional comments: n/a


Text Being Read:

Author: [n/a]
Title: Bible
Genre: Bible
Form of Text: Print: Book
Publication details: n/a
Provenance: borrowed (institution library)
prison library


Source Information:

Record ID: 12431  
Source - Print  
  Author: Henry Mayhew
  Editor: n/a
  Title: The Criminal Prisons of London
  Place of Publication: London
  Date of Publication: 1862
  Vol: n/a
  Page: 430
  Additional comments: n/a

Citation: Henry Mayhew, The Criminal Prisons of London (London, 1862), p. 430,, accessed: 11 August 2020

Additional comments:



Reading Experience Database version 2.0.  Page updated: 27th Apr 2016  3:15pm (GMT)