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Record 23133

Reading Experience:

24pp pamphlet describing a reading by Mrs Fry to the female prisoners at Newgate, at which the author was present. pp.8-9: 'The silence was at length broken by that mild voice which the prisoners had often heard. Mrs Fry began to read from the Bible. She had selected the 12th and 13th chapters of the epistle to the Romans. This selection did honour to her judgement, and while, with distinct articulation, she dwelt upon the more important of the words of Holy writ, every hearer appeared affected. The convicts shewed their interest in the instruction thus afforded them by the eye fixed on the reader, and their anxiety by heads put, as it were, forward to meet the sound, while the eye had the tear quivering on the lash, or the cheek shewed that it had overflowed its bounds. When she had finished the chapters which she had read slowly, to give time to the hearers to receive the words, and to comprehend their meaning, she remained for a few seconds perfectly silent, and the silence was a silence which might be felt.'
Century: 1800-1849
Date: 22 Dec 1820
Country: England
Time: morning
Place: city: London
specific address: Newgate Gaol
other location: prison
Type of Experience (Reader):
silent aloud unknown
solitary in company unknown
single serial unknown
Type of Experience (Listener):
solitary reactive unknown
single serial unknown

Reader/Listener/Reading Group:

Reader:Elizabeth Fry
Age Adult (18-100+)
Gender Female
Date of Birth 21 May 1780
Socio-economic group: Professional / academic / merchant / farmer
Occupation: wife of merchant
Religion: Quaker
Country of origin: England
Country of experience: England
Listeners present if any:
(e.g. family, servants, friends, workmates)
female prisoners, Sir James Williams (author of pamphlet), other ladies and gentlemen
Additional comments: n/a


Text Being Read:

Author: [n/a]
Title: Bible (New Testament)
Genre: Bible
Form of Text: Print: Book
Publication details: n/a
Provenance: owned


Source Information:

Record ID: 23133  
Source - Print  
  Author: Sir James Williams
  Editor: n/a
  Title: An hour in His Majesty's Gaol of Newgate
  Place of Publication: London
  Date of Publication: 1821
  Vol: n/a
  Page: 8-9
  Additional comments: n/a

Citation: Sir James Williams, An hour in His Majesty's Gaol of Newgate (London, 1821), p. 8-9,, accessed: 22 January 2020

Additional comments:



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