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Record 19862

Reading Experience:

'The Dean then shew'd me the Poem he wrote on his own death; when I came to that Part of it, [italics] Behold the fatal Day arrive! How is the Dean? He's just alive [end italics] I was so sensibly affected, that my Eyes fill'd with Tears; The Dean observing it, said, "Phoo, I am not dead yet - but you shan't read any more now". I then earnestly requested he would let me take it home with me. [he did this, on condition she neither copy it nor show it to anyone else - she did not, but her memory was very good and she learnt it and "could not forbear delighting some particular Friends with a Rehearsal of it" - when Swift heard others knew it, he thought LP had broken her word and was furious. He would not believe her assurances to the contrary] and produc'd a Poerm something like it, publish'd in [italics] London [end italics], and told me, from my reading it about, that odd Burlesque on it had taken rise. He bade me read it aloud. I did so, and could not forbear laughing, as I plainly perceiv'd, tho' he had endeavour'd to disguise his Stile, that the Dean had burlesqu'd himself'.
Century: 1700-1799
Date: Between 1 Sep 1732 and 30 Apr 1733
Country: Ireland
Time: n/a
Place: city: Dublin
specific address: Deanery House
Type of Experience (Reader):
silent aloud unknown
solitary in company unknown
single serial unknown
Type of Experience (Listener):
solitary in company unknown
single serial unknown

Reader/Listener/Reading Group:

Reader:Laetitia Pilkington
Age Adult (18-100+)
Gender Female
Date of Birth 1708
Socio-economic group: Clergy (includes all denominations)
Occupation: clergyman's wife
Religion: Anglican
Country of origin: Ireland
Country of experience: Ireland
Listeners present if any:
(e.g. family, servants, friends, workmates)
Additional comments: n/a


Text Being Read:

Author: Jonathan Swift
Title: Verses on the Death of Dr Swift
Genre: Poetry
Form of Text: Manuscript: Unknown
Publication details: n/a
Provenance: read in situ
read at Swift's Deanery


Source Information:

Record ID: 19862  
Source - Print  
  Author: Laetitia Pilkington
  Editor: A.C. Elias
  Title: Memoirs of Laetitia Pilkington
  Place of Publication: Athens GA
  Date of Publication: 1997
  Vol: I
  Page: 54-5
  Additional comments: n/a

Citation: Laetitia Pilkington, A.C. Elias (ed.), Memoirs of Laetitia Pilkington (Athens GA, 1997), I, p. 54-5,, accessed: 19 July 2024

Additional comments:

Date of birth 1708 or 1709. Verses later re-read at home.



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