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Record 29866

Reading Experience:


'Meeting held at 70 Northcourt Avenue: 18. 6. 35.

Charles E. Stansfield in the Chair

1. Minutes of last read and approved.

2. The Secretary then read a letter from Marjorie C. Cole, expressing her interest in the Book Club and offering us a book “Gone Rambling” by Cecil Roberts which she had recently read with enjoyment. [...]


6. The large subject of London was then opened by Howard Smith. He spoke of the extraordinary insistence of the divergent views as its origin, leaning to the opinion that it owed its beginnings to to a variety of causes.


7. Extracts from Defoe’s Journal of the Great Plague were then read by Victor Alexander.


8. From Defoe we turned to Pepys, and Reginald Robson described the Great Fire.


9. We next enjoyed a delightful picture of old London which Edith Goadby gave us, making the acquaintance of Gabriel Bardon the locksmith, his pretty daughter Dolly and Simon the apprentice. It was all too short, but at least we left them happily seated before their jolly round of beef, their Yorkshire cake and quaintly shaped jug of ale.

10. A further scene was depicted for us by Ethel Stevens, old Crosby Hall, Chelsea Hospital, Cheyne walk as it used to be, and Carlyle’s house, where he entertained Tennyson in the kitchen. We were introduced to John Stuart Mill and his great concern over the loss of his fiend’s manuscript of the French Revolution, and we took glimpses at William de Morgan + Sir Thomas More.

11. Finally Charles Stansfield read us Wordsworth’s Sonnet composed on Westminster Bridge, and Henry Marriage Wallis quoted happily ten lines from William Morris.'

Century: 1900-1945
Date: 18 Jun 1935
Country: England
Time: evening
Place: city: Reading
county: Berkshire
specific address: 70, Northcourt Avenue
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:Ethel C. Stevens
Age Adult (18-100+)
Gender Female
Date of Birth n/a
Socio-economic group: Professional / academic / merchant / farmer
Occupation: n/a
Religion: Quaker or associated with the Friends
Country of origin: n/a
Country of experience: England
Listeners present if any:
(e.g. family, servants, friends, workmates)
Members of the XII Book Club
Additional comments: n/a


Text Being Read:

Author: Ethel Stevens
Title: [On Chelsea, Carlyle, Tennyson, J. S. Mill, et. al.]
Genre: Essays / Criticism, History
Form of Text: Unknown
Publication details: n/a
Provenance: unknown


Source Information:

Record ID: 29866  
  Source - Manuscript
  Author: Victor Alexander
  Title: XII Book Club Minute Book, Vol. 3 (1931-1938)
  Location: private collection
  Call no: n/a
  Page/folio: 139–144

Citation: Victor Alexander, XII Book Club Minute Book, Vol. 3 (1931-1938) private collection, p. 139–144,, accessed: 23 June 2024

Additional comments:

Material by kind permission of the XII Book Club. For further information and permission to quote this source, contact the Reading Experience Database (



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