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Arthur Cuthbert 1734?-1788

Born: around 1734 and died 21 January 1788 aged 54.  Did he originate from the Ednam area near Kelso?
Son of:  Arthur's mother appears to have been Anna who later married Alexander Littlejohn.  Anna was alive in 1788 and possibly died 1798.  We do not yet know who Arthur's father was but Arthur may have been related to John Cuthbert.
Brother of:
1. Alexander Cuthbert of Old Burlington Street, Middlesex (born around 1741?, possibly died 1813).  He had a third son Robert Cuthbert.
2. Peter Cuthbert (died before 1787) who was married to Martha and had a son named Arthur Cuthbert and a daughter Margaret Cuthbert.
3. Mary Gray, who had a son Arthur Gray.
Cousin of: James Ramsay of Edinburgh.
Arthur married: Sarah Hopkins (1744-1777).  They were married 2 Feb 1765 in Madras (British Library N/2/1 f.306).  Sarah's parents were Capt Charles Hopkins (died 1757) and Phillis Hopkins (died 1794/5).
Arthur's children were:
1. Amelia Marsh (nee Cuthbert, 1765-1793) who married William Marsh (1755-1846).  It would appear that Amelia's biological father was Gen Richard Smith.
2. Arthur Cuthbert, born 29 April 1767 in Vepery, Madras, India.  Presumably died as an infant a short while later. 
3. Charles Harland Cuthbert (1771-1777).
4. Sarah Klinkowström nee Cuthbert (1772-1838).  She married 1st Thomas Brooke Esq (died 1809) and 2nd Otto Vilhelm Klinkowström.
5. James Ramsay Cuthbert (1776-1821) who married Sophia (1777-1857).

We know about Arthur Cuthbert from the following sources:
1. His memorial in the church 'St Martin of Tours with St Stephens on the Downs', located in Epsom, Surrey.
2. A mention on a memorial in the Gillingham Parish Church of St Mary Magdalene (Kent).
3. Arthur's letters to his daughter Amelia (see below).
4. A small mention in the book 'The Chippendale Room from Woodcote Park Epsom, Surrey . . . 1750' by Eben Howard.
5. A small mention in the book 'Epsom its History and Surroundings' by Gordon Home, published 1901.
6. A document in the Surrey Record Centre (2238/29) covenants for title in Epsom from Arthur Cuthbert to C.Foreman.
7. His will in the Public Record Office at Kew.
8. Their may be an obituary in the Gentleman's Magazine of 1788 (I have not yet seen this).
8. Various portraits (National Museum of Finland collection, Hartland Abbey collection, and possibly others).
9. The book 'Catalogue of the Home Miscellaneous Series of the India Office records', by Samuel Charles Hill, 1927, page 97.
10. The book 'Vestiges of old Madras, 1640-1800: traced from the East India' Volume 3, pages 77, 78, 79, 110, 234, 249, 269, by Henry Davison Love, 1913.  
11.  The book 'Memories of Madras' by Sir Charles Lawson, 1905, page 107.  Regarding the gold owed by the late Sir Eyre Coote to Admiral Sir Edward Hughes.
12. The publication 'The Edinburgh Review' - Page 298  by Sydney Smith - 1808.  Extract from Barrow's Life of Lord Macartney 1807 in which there is a reference to Arthur Cuthbert ("which was reechoed by Arthur Cuthbert, who, in his turn, read the admiral's reply " ).
13. The book 'Memoirs of the early life and service of a Field Officer, on the retired list of the Indian Army' by David Price (1762-1835), published 1839.  Page 65. Arthur Cuthbert is noted as being the Admirals Secretary in 1782.
14. The book 'The private correspondence of Lord Macartney, Governor of Madras (1781-85)' I have not seen this yet.  I understand that there is also a letter in the British Library from Arthur Cuthbert to Admiral Lord Macartney.
15. An Inquiry into the Conduct of the Commissioners for Victualling His Majesty's Navy, 1823.
16. Arthur Cuthbert's mahogany box passed down in the family.

Arthur Cuthbert
Of Berners St, London, and Woodcote (Woodcott) Park, Epsom, Surrey

We know that Arthur Cuthbert was born around 1734 as he died 21 January 1788 aged 54.  We do not know who his parents were but it would appear quite likely that his grandfather was John Cuthbert.  We know very little about this person other than the fact that he was reasonably well off and may have been involved in some way with trade to some of the Scandinavian countries.

It would appear that in 1754, at the age of 20, Arthur went to India with Admiral Charles Watson (1714-1757).  This would have been just 8 years after Fort St George in Madras had fallen briefly to the French in 1746.  Various skirmishes with the French had ensued and this is why an English fleet had been sent out.

There was also at this time, 29 November 1754, that a John Cuthbert buried in Madras.  He was noted as a Sailor, HMS 'Bridgewater' (British Library N/2/1 f.264).  Was he related to Arthur Cuthbert?

A short while later in 1756 Fort William in Calcutta fell to the Nawab Siraj-ud-Daula and the infamous incident 'the black hole of Calcutta' was to take place.  Robert Clive of the East India company was to lead a fight against the Nawab.  Supported by Admiral Watson the next 200 days were to lead to English supremacy of Bengal and the East coast of India.  For many individuals it also became an unprecidented opportunity for prize money greater than anyone's wildest dreams.

Arthur Cuthbert spent the next 29 years, on and off, in India much of this being spent in the British trading port of Madras.

During 1761-1762 (June 1761 - Oct 1762) Arthur is recorded as being on the ship 'Elizabeth' commanded by Captain Richard Tiddeman (1702c-1762).  Arthur is noted as Secretary keeping the logbook.

He is recorded as becoming a free merchant in 1763, (presumably based in Madras) which presumably meant that he continued to be independent of the Honorable East India Company.  It is also recorded that in November of the same year he became responsible for all of His Majesty's Naval stores in India in addition to those in Madras.

In 1765 (2 Feb 1765 in Madras?), Arthur married Sarah Hopkins, the daughter of Phyllis Hopkins and her late husband Capt Charles Hopkins (?-1757).  Sarah's first child, Amelia, appears to have been born in the same year and was baptized 5 March.  The anomaly of the dates may confirm that she was not fathered by Arthur but was actually fathered by her uncle Gen Richard Smith.

In 1771 Arthur is recorded as becoming an Agent for the Squadron (presumably the Naval Squadron).  His son Charles was born and was baptized 20 Nov 1771 at Fort St George, Madras.

It would appear that sometime possibly around 1771 Arthur Cutbhert bought an estate called Ednam near Kelso (County Roxburgh, Northumberland).  The estate was bought from William Dickson? who had inherited it from his uncle James Dickson.  Arthur later left the estate to his son James Ramsey Cuthbert.  Why did Arthur buy an estate that was such a long distance away.  Perhaps he had originated from the Kelso area?

At one stage Arthur is also described as the Naval Store Keeper and Agent Victualler of the Fleet in India.  A position in which he was later succeeded by William Smyth.

In January 1775 Arthur travelled back to England in the East India Company ship 'Speke', commanded by Capt Jeffery Jackson.  In addition, as passengers, were Arthur's wife, Sarah, their three children and his mother in law Phyllis Hopkins.

Arthur must have then spent a few of years in England as in 1777 he bought Woodcote Park, Epsom, Surrey, from George Nelson.  Sadly it was also in this year that his wife Sarah died and a memorial to her is in the church 'St Martin of Tours with St Stephens on the Downs', located in Epsom.

By 1778 Arthur was sailing with Adm Sir Edward Hughes.  In February 1779 they are recorded as leaving Portsmouth bound for India.  It would appear that Arthur became secretary to Sir Edward Hughes 12 May 1779, replacing Thomas More.

In April 1781 Arthur is with Adm Hughes in Bombay.

In December 1782 Arthur is noted by David Price as being the Secretary of Adm Hughes and handing out prize money relating to the capture of the port of Trincomalee in January 1782.

Sir George Ramsay Bart is noted in Nov 1782 as being a free merchant, partner in the house of Cuthbert and Ramsey.  Was this in partnership with Arthur Cuthbert or with Arthur's brother Alexander Cuthbert, or all three?  Alexander Cuthbert seems to have also spent some time in India.  It may be that Arthur was placing contracts for the Navy and his brother Alexander was supplying the goods.  Sir George Ramsey may have been a cousin.

Arthur is noted as sending a letter April 1783, on behalf of Adm Hughes, to Colonel Owen, regarding the gold of the late Sir Eyre Coote .  A rather complex situation where Sir Eyre Coote had borrowed money from Adm Hughes for government purposes but he had held it in his own name.  When Sir Eyre Coote died unexpectantly the situation became quite tense but the money was in the end paid back to the Admiral.

In January 1784 Arthur was in Bombay and possibly spent much of the year there as he left in December.

Adm Hughes and Arthur Cuthbert returned from India in the Sultan, arriving May 1785.  By this time they had both made a lot of money.

In August 85 Arthur writes a letter from the Navy Office in London which was where he was presumably working?  In October he attended the wedding of his daughter Amelia to William Marsh at Marylebone.  William was the son of George Marsh a Commissioner of the Navy who had also made a lot of money.

Unfortunately Arthur did not live very long to spend all his money as he died in 1788 aged only 54.  His worth seems to have been in excess of £100,000 which was a colossal amount of money for the time.



More detailed general notes are as follows:

Arthur is mentioned in the book 'Vestiges of old Madras, 1640-1800: traced from the East India'  by Henry Davison Love, Volume 3, page 77.  Mr Arthur Cuthbert came to India with Admiral Watson in 1754, was a free merchant from 1763, and in 1771 became an Agent for the Squadron.

There is a logbook in the Greenwich Archive which puts Arthur Cuthbert on the ship 'Elizabeth' commanded by Captain Richard Tiddeman.  Arthur Cuthbert is noted as Secretary keeping the logbook June 1761-1762 (I have not seen this yet).  We know that by the following year, 1763, Arthur was responsible for all of His Majesty's Naval stores in India.  In 1771 Arthur was still in India as his son Charles was born in Madras.

From the book 'Vestiges of old Madras, 1640-1800: traced from the East India' Volume 3, Page 77.
Arthur Cuthbert and family are noted, in the consultations of January 1775, as going back to England in a company ship, 'Speke', commanded by Capt Jeffery Jackson.  The other passengers were:
Capt Boswell who was insane and subsequently Capt Jeffery Jackson, Commander of the Speke, did not want to take him.
John Smith, late of Concil.
Mrs Wood (widow of Colonel Wood) and her four children.
Arthur Cuthbert, his wife, his mother in law and his three children.  Mr Arthur Cuthbert came to India with Admiral Watson in 1754, was a free merchant from 1763, and in 1771 became an Agent for the Squadron.
Mrs Phyllis Hopkins was also a passenger. Her daughter Sarah had become the wife of Arthur Cuthbert in 1765.

Arthur must have been back in England in 1777 as this is when he bought Woodcote Park, Epsom, Surrey.

By 1778 Arthur was with Adm Sir Edward Hughes.  It would appear that Arthur became secretary to Sir Edward Hughes 12 May 1779, replacing Thomas More who may have become ill around this time as Thomas died the following year at Madras, 11 May 1780.  As well as being secretary it would appear that Arthur was also a business partner with Sir Edward Hughes.  Another colleague was Thomas Robbins who was Purser of HMS Superb, Sir Edward's flagship.

Arthur Cuthbert is mentioned in the book 'Catalogue of the Home Miscellaneous Series of the India Office records' by Samuel Charles Hill, 1927, page 97. I understand that this notes an agreement between Eyre Coote and Admiral Hughes, nd, Council of War 30th Dec. 1780 and correspondence between Eyre Coote, Arthur Cuthbert (Secretary to Admiral Hughes).  I have not seen these yet.

The book 'Memoirs of the early life and service of a Field Officer, on the retired list of the Indian Army' by David Price (1762-1835), published 1839.  Page 65, 'One morning (a short week only, prior to our finale departure) a letter was put into my hand, containing a draft in my favour, from Arthur Cuthbert, the Admiral's secretary, on Mr. Miguel de Lima e Souza, a respectable Portuguese merchant of Bombay, for one thousand and thirty rupees: being my share of prize money arising from the capture of the Trincomalee'.  The capture of the port of Trincomalee on the coast of India was an army action which David Price had participated in (January 1782).  He notes that he received this prize money in early December 1782, just before he left Bombay.  This book also notes on page 133 a Mr Ramsey as holding the Chiefship of Surat in 1786.  On page 329 there is further mention of Alexander Ramsay being at Surat around 1793 and living in a house 'situated in a part of town, which from the number of Jewish families residing hard by, I might call the Jew's quarter, and the the westward of the Latty water-gate; the mansion near that gate, being then occupied by Mr Alexander Ramsay, a most intelligent and liberal minded civil servant; distinguished in that class which has been acknowledged to have produced as able public functionaries as any in the world.'  Note that David Price spells the name as Ramsay and Ramsey.  James Ramsay or Ramsey seems to have been a cousin of Arthur Marsh.

From the book 'Vestiges of old Madras, 1640-1800: traced from the East India' Volume 3, Page 234.
Sir George Ramsay Bart is noted in Nov 1782 as being a free merchant, partner in the house of Cuthbert and Ramsey.  Presumably he was in partnership either with Arthur Cuthbert or with Arthur's brother Alexander Cuthbert, or all three.

From the book 'Vestiges of old Madras, 1640-1800: traced from the East India' Volume 3, Page 249, 250.
Arthur Cuthbert is noted as sending a letter April 1783, on behalf of Admiral Sir Edward Hughes, to Colonel Owen, regarding the gold of the late Sir Eyre Coote.  Arthur demands that money owed to Adm Sir Edward Hughes, by Sir Eyre Coote, be paid over or the Admiral will prosecute.  The money was subsequently paid.  This episode is covered in much more detail in the book Memories of Madras' by Sir Charles Lawson, 1905, page 107

Sir Edward Hughes and Arthur Cuthbert returned from India in the Sultan, arriving May 1785.  By this time they had both made a lot of money.  Unfortunately Arthur did not live very long to spend all his money as he died only a few years later, 1788 aged 54.

It would appear that Arthur Cuthbert had been the Naval Store Keeper and Agent Victualler of the Fleet in India and was later succeeded by William Smyth.  William Smythe subsequently also made a lot of money.  His daughter (Sophia Harding nee Smyth), later upon her death in 1827, left the bulk of this fortune to the grandchildren of Arthur Cuthbert and George Marsh (Children of William and Amelia Marsh: Arthur Cuthbert Marsh, Amelia Marsh, George Marsh, Ann Marsh).

There is a note in the book "Epsom its History and Surroundings" by Gordon Home 1901 [republished 1972 S.R. Publishers Limited - ISBN 0 85409] refers to Cuthbert on page 81 as buying the Manor of Horton, and Woodcote Park.  It is believed that Cuthbert bought the property from George Nelson in 1777 and that soon after Cuthbert's death in 1788 the Woodcote Park property, separated from that of Horton, was purchased by Mr. Lewis de Teissier.

Arthur Cuthbert is listed as an owner of Woodcote Park, in the book by Eben Howard Gay 'The Chippendale Room from Woodcote Park Epsom, Surrey . . . 1750', published in 1928  Boston: Museum of Fine Arts.  This shows the interior of the drawing room from Woodcote park which was removed in the early 1900s and rebuilt in the Museum in Boston.

He may also have had estates at Henderside (Scotland) and at Warmington, Northants.

In 1787 Arthur is involved in purchasing Ednam in Scotland.  Why did he buy land here?  Was it where he had originated from?  There is some paper work relating to this purchase in the Scottish Record office. I have not seen this yet. Reference GD63/449. Title Extract Registered Disposition, containing procuratory of resignation, by William Dickson of Ednam, late Captain, R.N., to Arthur Cuthbert, late of Madras, now of Woodcottpark, Surrey, of certain parts of the lands and barony of Ednam in shire of Roxburgh, in addition to other parts of the said lands and barony already disponed by Disposition of the same date, reserving to himself the liferent of the said parts of the lands and barony. Registered Books of Council & Session 27 August 1787. Dates 30/7/1787.

The most comprehensive information about Arthur Cuthbert can be found in his will which is in the Public Record Office at Kew (Prob 11/1161).  This indicates that he was a very wealthy man and also that he had many relations.  He is recorded as living at Berners St in London and also having a Mansion House known as Woodcote near Epsom in Surrey.  He requests that he be buried in his family vault in Epsom, to join the bodies of his wife and son.  Arthur appoints as trustees:
Alexander Cuthbert, of Old Burlington Street (Arthur's brother).
George Marsh, Commissioner of the Navy (father of Arthur's son in law).
William Marsh, of Berners St (Arthur's son in law).
John Marsh of Bloomsbury (nephew of George Marsh).
James Morrison. 
Arthur then leaves his estate to be split up between his children, nieces and nephews as above.  Also his mother, Anna Littlejohn and mother in law, Phillis Hopkins.  £40,000 goes to his unmarried daughter Sarah, smaller sums for everyone else and then he states that all the rest, including proceeds from the sale of Woodcote, are to go to his son James (we know that a few years earlier in 1785 Arthur also gave £40,00 to his daughter Amelia when she married William Marsh).  The will is witnessed by Astley Maberley, Norton Gorden, Thos Orchard, William Geivens 3 July 1787 and later by W Percival and H George (both of Bath) and Lewis Cuthbert, 21 July 1787.  It was proved 23 January 1788.

The will of Aurther's mother-in-law, Phillis Hopkins, also provides some additional information.  She refers to Arthur and Sarah as her oldest son and daughter.  She appears to leave most of her estate to her younger son Charles Hopkins and his wife Martha Hopkins.  She mentions a nephew George Stratton of Great Tow in Oxfordshire.  She also mentions her grandchildren, John Mannseur Smith, Sarah Brook and James Ramsey.  She refers to James Ramsey has having a wife Mary and them both living at Bath.  She also leaves money to Ann Burnisby Cridden of Southampton.  The executors are William MarshAlexander Cuthbert and Samuel Hawkins of Pall Mall.  Her will is dated 16 and 27 December 1794 and it is proved 14 February 1795 so she must have died between these two dates.

Arthur Cuthbert's son in law, William Marsh, was a partner in a banking firm which in 1824 was called Marsh Sibbald & Co and was based at 6 Berners Street, Oxford Street, London.  Earlier in 1804 it was called Marsh & Creed.  Earlier still it was recorded in the London Directory of 1797 as "De Vismes, Cuthbert, Marsh, Creed and Co."  Presumably the earlier name indicates an involvement with Arthur Cuthbert or his son James Ramsey Cuthbert.  This information is recorded in "A Handbook of London Bankers", by F G Hilton Price, 1876.

Arthur Cuthbert is buried in his family vault in the church of 'St Martin of Tours with St Stephens on the Downs', located in Epsom, Surrey.  There are four memorial stones for his family.  His own stone has a figure of a clenched gauntlet above it and a coat of arms incorporating a snake below.  The stone itself reads as follows:

Sacred to the memory of Mrs Sarah Cuthbert the much loved wife of Arthur Cuthbert of Woodcott Esq and their eldest son Charles Cuthbert.  The mother died December 15, 1777 aged 33 years.  The son died November 18 the same year, aged six.  Their remains are interred in a vault under this marble.  As well as the remains of Arthur Cuthbert of Woodcott Esq who died 21 Jan 1788 aged 54 years and of Richard Brand Cuthbert his grandson and eldest son of James Ramsey Cuthbert Esq and Sophia his wife.  He was born on the 18 of December 1798 and died on the thirteenth of March 1806.

More information about the Cuthbert family and their connection with Woodcote can be obtained from the following website

In the Gillingham Parish Church of St Mary Magdalene (Kent), there are a number of memorials to various members of the Marsh family including:
"Amelia, Wife of William Marsh Esq. (the surviving son of the above mentioned George and Ann Marsh) Eldest Daughter of Arthur Cuthbert Esq of Woodcote Park, Surrey.  Died (unlamented only where unknown) the 5th of July 1793, Aged 28 years leaving five children, namely Arthur CuthbertAmeliaGeorge, Anne and Sarah, the later of whom died the 14th August 1793, aged 5 months and is Buried in this Church with her Mother".

The following are the Cuthbert entries in the Epsom Parish Registers: 
20 Nov 1777   Master Chas Cuthbert.  
19 Dec 1777  Mrs Sarah Cuthbert. 
28 Jan 1788 Arthur Cuthbert Esq. 
21 Jan 1821  James Ramsay Cuthbert Esq, 10 Grosvenor Sq, London aged 45. 
20 Mar 1806 Master Richard Brand Cuthbert from London.  
9 Mar 1857  Sophia Cuthbert of Pau, France aged 80.
28 May 1874 James William Cuthbert of 14 Grosvenor St, Midd, and Cannes, France aged 69 (Vault under Church).
21 Sep 1881  The Hon Jane Ann Cuthbert, 14 Grosvenor St, London, aged 75.

There are no entries in baptisms or marriages in the Epsom Parish Registers.

There are some entries in IGI:
Amelia, daughter of Arthur and Sarah, baptised 5 Mar 1766.
Charles Harland Cuthbert, son of Arthur and Sarah, baptised 20 Nov 1771 Fort St George, Madras, Tamil Nadu, India.
Sarah, daughter of Arthur and Sarah, baptised 25 Dec 1772.
Jas Ramsay Cuthbert son of Arthur and Sarah, baptised 1 May 1776, St Mary, St Marylebone, London.

The Surrey Record Centre also has a reference to a document (2238/29) for covenants for title in Epsom from Arthur Cuthbert to C.Foreman.

In the National Portrait Gallery archive, there is a record of a number of portraits of Arthur Cuthbert who was noted as being Secretary to Admiral Hughes.  There is also a record of a portrait of an "Alexander Cuthbert" and a portrait of a "Mr Cuthbert" which some one has penciled in the name "Isaac Cuthbert".




The following is a number of Arthur Cuthbert's letters and other associated documents

Letter from Richard Maidman to the Commissioners of the Navy, small mention of Arthur Cuthbert (copy from the Public Record Office, Kew, ADM 106/1125/225).

Norfolk Trinconomale Harbour

The 16 November 1763

Honourable Gentlemen

I have herewith inclosed the Papers as . . . abstract accompanying them and have since my last Letter of the 20 Ultime drawn a Set of Bills of Exchange upon your Board for the Sum of Two Thousand eight hundred pounds Sterling, payable at 30 days right to Alexander Reynolds Esquire for Value received of Mr Thomas Parry in Seven thousand Pagodas al eight Shillings Sterling the Pagoda, for defraying the expenses of refitting His Majesty's Ships after the late Storm.

The Admiral having appointed Mr Arthur Cuthbert to take Charge of His Majesty's Naval Stores remaining in India, those at Madras have already been delivered by survey into his custody, and I am now on my passage to Bombay, to deliver over those remaining at that place, and to close my accounts in India, which when done, I shall proceed to England by the first opportunity that offers, in order to pass my Accounts with your Board.  I am

Honourable Gentlemen

Your most Obedient Humble Servant

R Maidman

To The Honourable the Principle Officers & Commissioners of His Majesty's Navy.



The following is an extract from the book "Biographia Navalis or Impartial Memoirs of the Lives and Characters of Officers of the Navy of Great Britain" by John Charnock, 1798, Vol VI, page 65, Hughes, Sir Edward.  Athough Arthur Cuthbert is not mentioned in this extract, it would appear that Arthur was secretary and business partner to Admiral Sir Edward Hughes and hence the following applies to both.

On the 23 January, 1778, he [Edward Hughes] was raised to the rank of rear-admiral of the blue, and in the beginning of the ensuing year was again appointed to command in chief in the East Indies.  He hoisted his flag on board the Superbe, of 74 guns, and proceeded for India with the following force, exclusive of the flag ship; the Exeter and Burford, of 70 guns; the Eagle, Belleisle, and Worcester, of 64 guns each; the Vengeance, of 74 guns, accompanied him part of the way, and then parted for the West Indies.  On his passage to India he reduced, without difficulty, the French settlement of Goree, on the coast of Africa; and on his arrival in India, finding the enemy had no naval force in that quarter capable of contending with his squadron, the Belleisle, together with the Asia and Rippon, which the rear-admiral found there under commodore Vernon, were ordered to England with that gentleman soon afterwards.

For a full copy of the extract on Admiral Sir Edward Hughes, click here.




Prescription and receipt for Arthur Cuthbert from Mr Swan, Portsmouth.


For Arthur Cuthbert Esq; A Receipt fo soft Pomatum 

Take Oil of sweet Almonds, frest drawn, two Ounces.  

Of White wax one quarter of an Ounce.   

Of Sperma Ceti one quarter of an ounce.

White Rose Water a sufficient quantity.

Essential Oil of Bergamot for drops.

The Wax & Sperma Coti are to be scraped fine, and to be put with the Oil into a silver Saucepan, or small earthen pipkin glazed, over a gentle fire, Till the wax & Sperma Ceti are dissolved; then they are to be poured into the Rose-Water, the whole to be kept stirring until the mixture is quite cold; when the superfluous Rose Water is to be drained off, and the essential Oil added.

Mr Swan presents his best respects to Mr Cuthbert; according to the request, with which Mr Cuthbert favoured him, sends the above receipt for the Pomatum, procured from Mrs Wright; and sincerely wishes it may prove beneficial to the purposes, for which it was wanted.

Portsmouth 4th November 1778




Letter from Arthur Cuthbert to his daughter Amelia

Addressed to: Miss Cuthbert, Berner's Street, London.


Portsmouth the 19th Feb 1779

My Dear Amelia

I thank you for your second kind Letter of the 17th Instant & hope before this time all Mobbing & Tumult is over in London.  The joy was too violent to last long, all violent Passions soon wash Themselves, & all is quiet again.

Of all the number of Admirals & Flags that were at Portsmouth & Spithead a few days ago, there is not one Flag to be seen but Sir Edward Hughes's, and I hope a fair wind will soon carry that & us to Sea, for I am heartily tired of waiting here so long, & if my business did not in a manner compel me to go to India I believe I should soon give up the Voyage & return to my Dear Children & Friends, but there is a necessity that I go for your sakes, & therefore I need to be patient.

When you meet with any Ladies who are your Friends & mine, I beg you to remember me very kindly to them.  I have desired your Grandmamma to give Your Sister a New Cap for Her very pretty & kind Letter.  You my Dear Amelia deserve every thing from me because I have ever seen you Good, & I entreat you to continue so by a close application to your Studies, & a ready obedience to your Grandmamma & to Miss Dove who have Your Wellfare & Happiness as much at Heart as I have, & nothing shall be wanting on my part to render you Happy & Content for I am ever

Your Affectionate Father

Arthur Cuthbert.

[This letter bears the black wax seal of Arthur Cuthbert showing his crest.  A shield with a band across the middle, a snake above and a crescent below. Above the shield is a gauntlet holding a spear. Below the shield is 'Nec Minus Fortiter']




Letter from Arthur Cuthbert to his daughter Amelia


Superb at St Hellens the 6th March 1779

My Dear Amelia

I thank you for your last affectionate Letter, which gave me great pleasure.  It was dated the 26th . . . but I have not had leisure to answer it sooner.  We have at last a prospect of getting to Sea I hope tomorrow morning, & you shall hear from me from Madeira, I wish I could write you fully now but nor from my time nor from my Spirits permit it.  I shall therefore only Beg of you at present, that you will be Obedient to Your Dear Grand Mother, Attention to your Governess, Kind Hearts to your Poor little Sister & Brother, & Polite & Wellbred to all your Friends & Acquaintances.  Once more Adieu & believe me always

Your Affectionate Father

Arthur Cuthbert.




Letter from Arthur Cuthbert to George Marsh, Commissioner of the Navy.


Superb at Sea the 22nd March 1779

Lat 43° N, Long 17° W

Dear Sir

We left St Helens on the 7th Instant with 5 Sail and a Sloop of our own Squadron, 13 Indiamen, & the Vengence, Acleon, 2 Bombs, their 2 tenders and 10 Sail of Transports & Store Ships for the Coast of Guinea.  The Resolution & Shrewsbury also sailed with us & have accompanied us thus far, today they leave us to return to England.  The Bellisle from Plymouth has joind us since we have been at Sea.

Hitherto we have been rather unlucky in the Winds & Weather we have had, and that it aggravated by the slow sailing of some Ships of the Convoy, but to me who have of late suffered such heavy Misfortunes these things appear as matters of no Consequence, & even a SeaLife does not seem a hardship to me although I have lived so many years at ease on Shore, but in deed at Sea, or on Shore, is now matter of indifference to me, it's true Sir Edward Hughe's very kind & friendly Treatment is a Comfort to me.

I was favoured with Your very obliging Letter a few days before we left Spithead, & have the satisfaction to inform You that the Person therein alluded to has seen his Error, & appears to me to wish very much to cultivate a foundly understanding between us, which gives me real pleasure, for a contrary Conduct would to me make the Service very inconvenient & disagreeable.

You will be pleased to pardon the bad hand this is wrote in as the Ship rolls very much  & I have a very bad head ach partly from Sea Sickness, at Madeira I shall have the honor to address You in a better Hand, in the mean time I entreat You will present my best Respects to Mrs Marsh, and accept my hearty wishes for Your & Her Health & Happiness, I am with the sincerest Regards & Esteem

Dear Sir

Your much Obliged &

Most Humble Servant

Arthur Cuthbert

  1. Pray Sir remember our Mast Ship, we have lost Two Topmasts already.  Let her be early with Us, for I foresee the want of Lower Masts in the East Indies, & without them we must lee by the walls.  A.C.




Letter from Arthur Cuthbert to George Marsh.


Tunchal on Madeira the 23rd April 1779

My Dear Sir

We arrived here with the Squadron & Convoy the 5th instant after a very tedious passage of a Month occasioned chiefly by the bad Sailing of some of the Indian Ships & Transports of whom not one separated from us owing to the great Attention paid to them.

At this place we have completed our Water and taken on board Wine in the doing of which we have met great delays partly from many days blowing Weather on which the Boats could not pass backwards or forwards, & partly from the contract on Agents here for Madeira Wine who shipped on board the Squadron a Stuff they called Wine, but what was in reality scarce equal to good vinegar, this has been condemned and after a thousand difficulties made and delays occasioned to the Public Service, good Wine has been supplied, but not until the Admiral [Edward Hughes] has made Publication for purchasing from the Merchants here, on which the Contractors Agent rather than forfeit the Contract furnished Us with tolerable good Wine, but in truth the last year's Vintage at this Island was very bad, & the Contract Price so very low being only �9.12 per pipe of 110 Gallons, that I firmly believe the Contractors have lost very considerably & our demand of nearly 800 Pipes much exceeded any thing of the kind for many years.

The Admiral to facilitate this business was under the necessity of giving Mr More his appointment of Agent Victualler, & He was obliging enough to offer me mine as Naval Officer at the same time but I declined to accept it so near Home, but the Navy Board should take amiss such an Appointment, I hope the Victualling Board will agree to Mr More's for the Admiral's sake.

During the whole of the time we have been here the Admiral has kept me in constant employment about Shipping Wine Water & Tea to which I have readily submitted as it serves to keep my Mind in some degree employed, & diverts those Heart rending Sorrows that still bear me down, and indeed the Admiral's very great & friendly attention to me on every occasion ought to command every return of Service & Gratitude in my power, although my partner is by no means the agreeable one I could wish.

By some News papers as far as the 25th . . . which we have seen here, I find Pondicherry is taken and much work in India done to our hands, so much the better to crush the Snake in the Egg.  Now if the Dons winch we shall have Manila & the Phillipines Islands.  Sir Edward Vernon has also fought a battle & some of the Company's Ships are arrived, & I have I hope bought with the some part of my Pagodas, if not I fear it will go hard at Woodcott [Manor in Surrey] before I get to India to make remittances after so many delays on our passage.

I am in hopes we shall get to Sea again about the 25th Instant & our next halt will be at False Bay at Cape Good Hope a 12 week passage I fear.  The crews of the Ships are in general healthy, but the Small pox has broken out on board several of them which has had some little effect on me who never had that disease.

I trust when the summer comes in you & my Worthy Friend Mrs Marsh will honour Woodcott, & my poor Remnant there with frequent Visits as often as it may be convenient to you.  I shall have the honour to address you again from the Cape & with best wishes, & grateful & earnest Prayers for your & Mrs Marsh's Health & Happiness I remain

your much Obliged & 

most Humble Servant 

Arthur Cuthbert.

[note added later]10th May 1779 Mr Cuthbert received 23 June answer by Land 

& by Mrs Crisp Nov 1779.




Letter from Arthur Cuthbert to George Marsh Commissioner of the Navy.


Superb in Goree Bay the 10th May 1779

My Dear Sir

I had the pleasure to write you a few lines at Madira which I intended to forward by the Phasant Cutter, but the Admiral [Edward Hughes] having detained that vessel to carry home his Dispatches from this place gives me a farther opportunity of paying my Respects to you.

We anchored off Goree with every ship of our own Fleet Indiaman Transports & each not one lost, the 8th instant in a perfect Condition to have taken the place if it had been garrisoned by the French and only about 500 of the Native Inhabitants on it who received us with great joy, having before experienced the Sweets of living quietly under the English Government.

The French in February last possessed themselves of our Factories at Gambia & Senegal, & soon after withdrew from Goree, Gambia & have posted themselves with what Force they had, about 200 Men, at Senegal, which is now in their possession, and as neither the time of the Year, or the Admirals Orders will permit us to turn back to take it, the reduction of that place will be left to Capt Maitland of the Vengeance, & the other Ships of War now here with the Aclaon, Thyana & Malanta with the 2 Bomb Vessels & the Garrison of Goree which consists of 400 Men of the 75th Regiment, fully sufficient for the work if they do but set about it.  The Coast of Guinea Trade Fleet which sailed in Company with the West India Fleet from England in the end of last March are all arrived here yesterday in safety, and we with our own Six Ships of the Line, Nymph Sloop & 13 India Ships proceed to Sea on our Voyage tomorrow without any farther deviations I hope, for it will be near the end of September before we can reach the Coast of Coromandel, much of our time has been lost in our Attention to our Convoy, many of which are very poor Vessels & bad Sailors.

Among the many other obligations I owe to your kind Friendship I am now to thank you for your Obliging recommendation to Captain Simonton, who is a most Worthy Man & very Obliging to me on all occasions, & the Admiral is truly a Father to me.

I have not any thing to trouble you with on the score of my own little concerns at present.  I shall think myself much honoured by every visit you and my Worthy Friend Mrs Marsh with make to Woodcott in the Summer, & I am sure Mrs Hopkins & my poor babes will be happy to see you both there often.

It is possible my brother may have sent some of my property in his Hands home by the Cormorant Sloop, if not, then by the expressed India, but they will arrive very late in England, for I find the Warwick a 50 Gun Ship that was sent to Convey them from St Helena, & left England at the same time we did, is still fooling away her time at the Canary Islands.

I have taken the liberty to put all my Letters by this Conveyance under cover to you, not with a design to save Postage I assure you, but because I think they will go with more safety, but if it be the least disagreeable to you that I do so, be so kind as to tell my Friend Billy that you would not have it so, & he will inform me, & it shall not be done again.

The Admiral, knowing I am now writing to you, begs to be kindly remembered to you & Mrs Marsh, to whom I beg you will my best Respects & Good Wishes acceptable, and believe me ever

My Dear Sir

Your much Obliged &

Grateful Humble Servant

Arthur Cuthbert




Letter from Arthur Cuthbert to his daughter Amelia.


Superb in Goru Bay the 10th May 1779

My Dear Amelia

I wish to say a thousand things to You & which my time at present will not permit me to do, but all to beg & entreat of You that You will pay All possible Attention to accomplish Yourself as a Gentlewoman & a Good Christian, now my Dear is Your time to do both, & the sooner you set about it seriously the better & the easier it will be for You.

In the first place then my Dear Amelia learn what You owe to God & to Your Neighbour, & for this purpose you will have Your Grandmamma's & Miss Dove's best Advice & Instructions, & they will furnish you with such Books as may best teach You Your Duty to that Being on whom alone You can depend for Good.  Be constant in Your Devotions Morning & Evening, & oftener if You find Yourself so disposed, consider You know not how soon You may be called hence by Death, & that without Goodness all other Qualifications & Accomplishments are of no Value.  I do not mean that you are to neglect the requisite Accomplishments of a Gentlewoman, & to shut Yourself up in Your room, on the Contrary I recommend to You to be Cheerfull, Affable, Obliging with good Manners, to Dance sometimes, Sing & Play well on the Harpsicord, all these are innocent in themselves, but these alone can never constitute a Good Woman without Goodness of Heart to Your Neighbour, & an Attention to religious Duties.

You must not my Dear Amelia imagine that I think You any ways defective in the Duties I recommend to You, far from it, but it is my Duty as Your Parent to recommend to You what is right, it will bring Happiness both to You & me & all who Love You, if You follow my Advice & the Advice of Your Grand Mother & of Your Governess.

Your Grand Mamma will tell You all the News of my Letter to her, & I hope to have some very pleasing Letters from You by the first India Ships with all the News of Town & Country, who of our Acquaintance is married, who of our Friends are kind & attentive to You, & who not so, & in return I will write you all the East India News, & if You want anything from that Country, You have only to write me what it is, & I will either send or bring it You if in my power.  Your Dear Grandmamma will not let You want Money for all good purposes.  Farewell, God bless & preserve You prays

Your Affectionate Father

Arthur Cuthbert.




Letter from Arthur Cuthbert to his daughter Amelia.


Addressed: Miss Amelia Cuthbert, No.14 Berner's Street, London.

Cape of Good Hope the 15th August 1779

My Dear Amelia

Although I have wrote your Dear Grand Mamma a few lines for Her & Your information of my present Welfare, & although I am much hurried with the business of the Squadron, yet I do not fail to write you to remind you of what I have already often told you, that the principle part of my happiness will Depend on your & your Sisters Conduct through Life.  You my Dear Amelia are now at an Age when you ought to think seriously, & employ every Moment of your Time to make Yourself a good Christian & an accomplished Gentlewoman.  If you fail in this I am sure it would be better that I never returned to England.  Your Dear Mother is lost to me, and so is my sweet Charles, if I find not comfort & happiness with you and your Dear Brother & Sister, what need have I to return to you, & I assure you if you do pay that Attention to your Education which you know is necessary to make you an accomplished Gentlewoman I shall return to England with pleasure in full hopes that my Dear Children will make my Old Age in some degree happy.  You must not imagine my Dear Amelia, that because I write you so seriously I am in the least Angry with you.  I only wish you to provide for your own Happiness in time.

What little news I have picked up I have wrote to your Grand Mamma, indeed nothing either new or agreeable is to be met with in long Voyage out of sight of Land.

When you write your Aunt Mrs Smith pray present my Love to Her, & remember me very kindly to Miss Dove, Mrs Pemble, Mrs Tomkyns, The Misses Smiths & all Friends about Epsom.  I am ever My Dear Amelia's

Affectionate Father & Friend

Arthur Cuthbert.




Letter from Arthur Cuthbert to his daughter Amelia.


Bombay the 6th April 1781

My Dear Amelia

I return you a thousand Thanks for your two obliging Letters of the 13th April & 15th May of last year, & rejoice exceedingly to hear from everybody that writes me, that you are making good progress in your education, & are every way a well disposed good Girl.  I have received you two Drawings, which considering that you are but a beginner, I think very pretty, & in return I have desired your Grand Mamma to present you with Twenty Guineas to be at your own disposal to purchase anything you like, & your Worthy Grandmamma approves.

I shall be happy to hear from you often & beg you to remember me kindly to all your Friends.  I am sorry for poor Mrs Tomkyns with ill health, & beg you will present my kind Compliments to Her.

Be kind, My Dear Amelia, to your Cousin Peggy Cuthbert, & do not despise her because she is now an Apprentice, every body are not born rich.  Be very kind & civil to every body who may from their station be your inferiors, polite & civil to your Superiors & Equals.  Love your Brother & Sister, as a Sister ought, & Love & Respect your Worthy Grandmamma & Good Miss Dove but above all remember your Duty & Gratitude to God in whom you live & on whom you must depend for all good both here & hereafter.  I am ever

My Dear Amelia

Your Affectionate Father 

Arthur Cuthbert.




Letter from Mrs Phillis Hopkins to her granddaughter Amelia Cuthbert.


My Dear Miss Cuthbert

I received your king & Obliging Letter Last Sunday, when we had Company at Woodcote, that Continued with us until Monday Morning, and as I was Obliged to come to town on account of the young lads being Brought from School that day was the reason of my not Answering it sooner.

It gave great Pleasure of Hearing My Dear Sally is Better, and mends in her Appetite and Heath which I Pray God may Continue.

The same time I received your letter, I had one from Mr Marsh the Contents you was no Stranger to but I can't help think you was not Desirous I should be lead into the Secret of what had Past between him & yourself, or ever did you Mention your Inclinations, as I know how things is gone.  It made me happy you have fixed on Mr Marsh, and I make not the Least Doubt will Make you a Good Husband.  He is a very Good Tempered Worthy Man.  I now have given you My Sentiments of him.  Though I was not Consulted on the Occasion, all I can say that your future Happiness will make the remainder of my Day Pass with greater satisfaction and let me Asure you I shall be ready Always to Render you any service in my Poor Power, If required, as I have always had your Welfare at Heart, and ever Strived to give Satisfaction.

Your good Father told me he has had a very good night and more free from his Pains than he has had for some time.  He thinks its from his not Drinking the usual quantity of wine & beer.  He beg his Love to you and your Sister.  I will not detain you any longer then request you will Tender my Love to her and Miss Dove and believe me to be with the Greatest Truth

My Dear Miss Cuthbert

Your very Affectionate GrandMother

Phillis Hopkins

Berners Street 16th August 1782

Neddy George & Bob Sends their Duty to their Papa.

Jamnei Love to his Uncle and Sisters

My Compliments to Mr Alexander, the Col Desires to be remembered to all.




Letter from Arthur Cuthbert to George Marsh Commissioner of the Navy.


Superb in Madras Road the 17th August 1782

My Dear Sir

I have taken the liberty to send under the care of Captain John Corner of the Companies Packett the Rodney, now homeward bound from this place Three Rings one for Yourself of which I earnestly intreat your acceptance, one for my Worthy Friend James King Esq & one other little one for my Esteemed Friend Billy Your Son.  I hope to get him a better soon, & You will please to say to him on the occasion, as I fear I shall not find luzwn to write to him on this occasion.

It shall no doubt seem very strange to you that at all times & on all occasions when I do write, it appears to you to be in haste, but it has even been my disposition to postpone my own concerns, till my Duty to the Public was first discharged, & I assure My Dear Sir, no Galley Slave ever laboured harder.  I have now even the Comfort that the Worthy Officers I have the honor to serve under places an entire dependence on me to do all for the best, & that is not only a high satisfaction to me, but a speen for my exertions to deserve well of him, after the most unwearied diligence to get the Squadron refitted after three serious engagements.  We go to sea tomorrow & shall soon be alongside Mons Suffrein [the French Admiral], whose measures we have hitherto by the blessing of God been enabled totally to disconcert, but the limes are in this part of the World are very critical, & the Squadron carries on its bottoms the fate of all our possessions in India.  God grant it may be prosperous.  I am no Croaken.

I request You present to present my best Respects to my Worthy Friend Mrs Marsh, & keep Compliments to My Friend George & all other enquiring Friends & believe me always with the truest Gratitude & Respect

My Dear Sir,

Your much Obliged &

most Humble Servant

Arthur Cuthbert

  1. The Coventry being on Repairs at Bombay, & the Active at Bengal, & their Accounts not yet closed prevents me from closing my Accounts with Your Board, & writing to them finally as their Officer, which I request you to say, if need be AC.

[note added in a different hand] 17 August 1782 Mr Cuthbert with Rings.




Letter from Arthur Cuthbert to his daughter Ameila


Madras the 22nd August 1783

My Dear Amelia

I am extremely pleased with the obliging and affectionate Letters you have so kindly written me these two years past, many of them have come to my hands, but the opportunities I have had to answer have been few, and most of the Ships I wrote to you by, have either been taken by the Enemy, or lost.  In truth my hurry of business has been so great ever since the War commenced in this part of the World, that I have been obliged to give up writing to many Friends.

The disappointment of Admiral Sir Hyde Parkers not arriving to relieve the Admiral has detained me much longer in India than I wished or intended, but it was impossible for me to leave my Worthy Admiral without a breach both of Honor and Gratitude, and I am sure my Dear Amelia would be very sorry Her Father should be guilty of either.

Now the War is at an end for the present, I trust in God the Admiral will in a short time be permitted to return to England when I shall accompany Him, and that I shall for the rest of my Life enjoy a little rest from business, and be made happy in the affections and goodness of my Dear Children.

I had written to your Dear Grandmother two years ago for your's, Sally's and Jamie's Pictures drawn by Mr Smart, and I dare say she sent them, but they never came to hand, and from what Captain Mears of the Brilliant told me, I suspected they were lost in  that Ship which he Commanded.

We are at this time anxiously expecting a Frigate from England with Orders to the Admiral how to dispose of the very large Squadron now under his Command, and I think a great part of the Ships will be ordered to return to England, if this Frigate arrives soon, we may sail from hence for England in October, if not soon, we must go to Bombay, and shall not be able to sail for England before March next; however that will not make much difference, as at all events I trust in God.  I shall have the happiness to embrace my Dear Children before the time Twelvemonths.

I consider you my Dear Amelia as a Young Grown up Woman, and therefore write to as such.  I am fully satisfied your Gratitude to Your Worthy Grandmother, and your own great good sense will induce you at all times and on every occasion to hearken willingly to her Advice, which you may now often have occasion for, was I with you, mine also should be at your Service, not as a Tyrant but as an Affectionate Father, as it is I shall only make you a few requests and doubt not you will readily grant them, the first is, that you continue to behave with the greatest Respect and Attention to your Worthy Grandmother, with kind Love and affection to your Sister and Brother, and all due Regards to Miss Dove, who I am sure has a sincere Regard and Affection for you, the next is fully of as much consequence both to yourself and me, and it is, that you will cautiously guard your Heart against the least impression in favour of any Man, till I either return, which must now I think be soon, or am no more.  I know too much the ways of the World not to think your present situation dangerous, and it would break my Heart, if on my return I find my Dearest Amelia married to a Man I despised or disliked, consider the unhappy fate of your Aunt who married without her Father's consent, and indeed when you look around you, you may see a thousand instances of the unhappy consequences of such marriage, but as I have already said I trust to your Good Sense, and Goodness of Heart to avoid this Danger to yourself and mortification to me.

I shall write my Dear Sally also by this conveyance, but for fear of accidents to her Letter beg your present my Affectionate Love to Her with a Kiss, my best Compliments to Miss Dove, and also Compliments to all our enquiring Friends.

Lest I should forget to write it to your Grandmother pray tell Her I have made the most particular enquiries on board His Majesty's Ship Europe Captain Phillip one of the Ships of our Squadron but could hear nothing of Young Mr Stark,  I am ever with the truest Regard and sincerest wishes for your Happiness and Welfare.

My Dear Amelia

Your Affectionate Father

Arthur Cuthbert

  1. My Old & Trusty Clerk Mr Mendez wrote the fair copy of this Letter, & presents his best Respects to you and all the family.




Letter from Arthur Cuthbert to his daughter Ameila


Bombay the 10th January 1784

My Dear Amelia

It would make me very unhappy indeed, if You should imagine the unfrequency of my Letters proceeded from the want of Paternal Affection toward You, far from it my Dear Child, but the real cause I have not, & cannot write You often arises from the very great load of business I have had ever since my arrival in this Country, which although now something less than before by the departure of Twenty Ships of War for England, still occupies every hour of my time.  You will therefore my Dear Amelia pardon Your poor Old Father for any appearance of want of Attention and Affection for You on the score of frequent Letters.

The only information I can give You from this place worth Your Notice is that I am well, thanks to God.  It would give you no pleasure to know what I have suffered from frequent Engagements with the Enemy, Gales of Wind, and Shipwreck, & the heavy load of business I have constantly been obliged to go through with.  I will look forward with Hope that in October of this year I shall be permitted with the Admiral to leave this Country on my return to You & the other Dear Remains of my once happy Family, the unforeseen misfortunes of which have so long deprived You of a Father & a Friend.

I am fully sensible my Dear Amelia of the difficult situation You are now placed in at Your time of Life, & that Your own Worth, & the supposed Wealth of your Father may tempt many to sue for Your Love & Hand.  I do not mean to preach to You, but request, as Your Father & Friend, You will cautiously guard Your Heart against every advance of that kind that may be made to You until my arrival in England when I will to the best of my power forward Your happiness in the manner most agreeable to You, in the meantime I entreat You, on all occasions of that kind, consult Your Dear & Worthy Grandmother, & open to Her all You feel, & all You wish, & be guided by Her advice, a failure in this point may make You the Wife of a Man with whom I could neither converse nor associate however Titled or Adorned, for after my long knowledge of Mankind it is not every Man, even if a Lord, I would take by the hand as a Son in Law.

I have sent regularly by all the homeward bound Ships Shawls, Muslins etc, except the present, & have never had any information from Mr William Marsh to whose care they were directed that any of them were arrived, if they have come safe You will have plenty of these things, if not, I have put myself to a great Expense to little purpose for these things all cost dear here, & the same Money would buy many prettier things in England, however that You may not think My Dear Amelia that I scruple the Expense I have enclosed with this an Order on my Agents to pay You �50 to buy Shawls or anything else, of if You do not want it, to give away to the poor & needy who do.

I cannot recollect anything further to write You at present My Dear Amelia, except to recommend Your Brother & Sister to Your Love & kind Care, Your Grand Mother to every dutiful Attention from You & Miss Dove to Your best Regard & Esteem for the obliging attention & care She has given to Your Heath & Education.

Be pleased to give my best Complements to Mr & Mrs Pringle & all Old Friends, & be assured of the Love of Your Affectionate Father

Arthur Cuthbert. 




Letter from Catherine Stratton to Miss Amelia Cuthbert.


Addressed to: Miss A Cuthbert, Berners Street, London.

Susat [India?], 17 March 1785

I was made very happy my dear Miss Cuthbert by the receipt of your letter, and sincerely hope that you will continue to write to me, for be assured you cannot do so more frequently than pleasing.  Your father left Bombay in December, and I hope by this time he is safely arrived, upon which I heartily congratulate you, as no doubt your Anxiety on his account must be all over.  I did myself the pleasure of writing to Mrs Hopkins, by the European Captain Applegath, and have taken the liberty of sending her by the same opportunity, one jar of Mango Pickle, and some Curry Stuff, which I hope she has received.  If my poor offer of services can be any way of use to her, and yourself, believe me I shall always esteem myself, happy in doing anything in my power to serve you.

I like this place very much we are as sociable as can be expected with a few agreeable Ladies, we live in the Country in a very pleasant House, and Garden.  I have taken to riding out on Horseback, and have got a very pretty Horse, given me by a friend of my Mother's.  You complain in your letter that Sally will be taller than you.  I have a little sister here that will be at least half a head taller than either Betsey of myself.  We have heard from my Uncle since his residence in France and I hope that the change of Air may be of service to my little Cousins.  Jack is appointed a writer at Susat, which you may suppose does not a little please us, he grows very lusty and will look like a Counsellor long before he is one, he unites with me in duty to Mrs Hopkins, and love to yourself and Brother Sister and I believe me as ever you affectionate Friend

Catherine Stratton




Letter from Arthur Cuthbert to his daughter Amelia


Berners Street, the 8th August 1785

My Dear Amelia

I am made very happy to know of your Letter of the 16th, this moment come to hand that your Dear Self & sister, & all Friends of the Party are safe arrived at Weymouth & in good Health, & that you like the Place & are accommodated to your satisfaction.  When ever I can clearly see through the most material parts of my Business, be assured  I will not delay a moment to join you, till then you must make yourselves of the Party as easy & happy as you can.

On the subject of Mr M's [William Marsh]conversation, or rather Declaration to you, I find it very difficult for me to speak positively to the Point, unless I had myself been of your Sex, but I will give you my opinion in the best manner I can, as you desire it, depending on your Prudence for the application of it.  Knowing Mr M as I do, I really cannot find the most distant objection on my part to Him as my Son in Law, on the contrary I value Him as far as relates to me, & as far as I know of his Temper, Manners, & Conduct, as a Worthy Young Man & my Friend, but my Dear Amelia, the question you ought to put you yourself, is wither you will give a preference to Mr M not only as your Father's Friend, but as a Husband whom you Love, Honor, & are happy to Obey.  You will not I am sure think I mean these very very serious Words in Joke, far otherwise, for although every Road to Happiness in the married State is open to You, & Your Mental & Personal Qualifications, Your Family, & Fortune, entitle you to such a Choice of a Husband as bids fairest to obtain that End.  Your Father with all is little knowledge ought not to point the Man, that Choice I therefore leave to Your Dear Self, earnestly praying to God it may answer the End.  If then Mr M be the Man You prefer as a Husband, to all others, with a sincere & honest Resolution to Love Honor & Obey Him as such, I can see no good end it would answer either in Prudence or Delicacy to say otherwise to Him when next he has an opportunity of speaking to you alone, for Deceipt in Word or Deed will ever I hope be far from You, but Prudence & Delicacy much ever attend your Declaration on this occasion, as well as on every future, & You ought to be guarded neither to say nor do too much.  This is a very serious business, & I wish I had more time to write You, but as you will expect my present Scrawl on Wednesday, & I would be sorry to disappoint you, it may not be improper, if you think well of it, to consult Miss Dove, & between you alter or amend with her Advise where you find me wrong.  Your Uncle Alexander [Cuthbert] too has I am sure Good Advice every much at, Your Service.

I am truly glad your Dear Sister is in so fair a way to gain Health & Strength, pray present my Love to Her, & best Compliments to all of your Party, & tell the two Gentlemen I will write them tomorrow or as soon s I can.  Believe me my Dearest Amelia ever

Your Affectionate Father

Arthur Cuthbert.

  1. All of the Family here are in perfect Health, thanks to God.  AC.




Letter from Arthur Cuthbert to his daughter Amelia.


Navy Office the 17th August 1785

My Dear Amelia

I thank you very much for your long & obliging Letter of the 13th, & give you my entire approbation of all you have done respecting Your Man [William Marsh].  I not only hope, but expect, you will be happy in your choice, it was perfectly consistent with your usual prudence not to promise to answer His Letters, however there is no harm in now & then acknowledging the receipt of them, anything more, if said, must be guarded, & have no Rapsody in it, as Love Letters too often have.

My business does not abate in the least, nor have I any hopes of getting through it before next Spring, if therefore I do get to Weymouth, it can only be for a day or two at most.  My complaints in my thighs have been less troublesome these two days past, but they are still with me, & the cold & wet weather always increases them.

Your grandmother & all the Family are in Town this week, some of the Rooms at Woodcott are painting, & your Brother & Cousins came from School for the Vacation on Monday, so that the Berners Street House is full.  I have from time to time mentioned to your Grandmother & Col Hopkins the progress of the affair with Mr M.  As they know they could not prevent your wishes, they wisely gave into them, but not gracefully, for I find nor you, nor Mr M, would have found favour in their sight, but that is not of much consequence.  I saw a letter from your Grand Mother to You, not over civil I must confess, however I expect to see a very civil Answer on your part to it, & that soon.  It will add to my present happiness to know Your Dear Sister continues to mend in Health & Strength.

All the family here are well, & the same in the North, enclosed with this you will receive a Letter from that quarter.

Be pleased to give my Love to your Uncle & Sister, & best Compliments to Miss Dove, & be assured I am ever

Your Affectionate Father

Arthur Cuthbert

Mr M is well.





Note from Miss Starke to Miss Amelia Cuthbert, undated, but before 27 October 1785 (when she married William Marsh).


Miss Cuthbert

Miss Starke returns Compliments to Miss Cuthbert, is much obliged to her for reminding her of the Note, & will esteem it a favour if she will permit the enclosed, to be sent as directed, whenever it is most convenient to Mrs Hopkins.  The cement with which the Card House is covered, is made as follows.

An Ouncer of Isingglass dissolved in 8 Table Spoonfull of boiling water, put to it 8 spoonfulls of spirit of Wine, & mix it up with Rock Lime, or Tarrass, just before you want to use it, for the Lime dries in an Instant & must not be mixed up twice.

The above Cement before the Lime is put to it may possibly set hard, & then it must be heated on the fire with some small Beer put to it, for it must always be poured upon the Lime when hot.

Epsom, Wednesday Morning.

[note added in a different hand] Mr Jones, No 85 Gracechurch Street.




An entry in George Marsh's diary records the wedding of his son William Marsh to  Amelia Cuthbert.


27th October 1785.  My dear son William was married this day Thursday to Miss Amelia Cuthbert at St. Mary L'bone Chapel.

Present.  Her father, sister, her uncles Alexander Cuthbert at Colonel Hopkins, Miss Dove [The Governess] and myself. Her father gave her �40,000 of which �10,000 he desired might be settled upon her, but my son desired to make it �15,000 which he settled upon her accordingly. At this time his fortune and income were equal to hers, so that if riches will produce happiness they have a very large share to begin the world with, and the greatest prospect of it.

We returned to Mr Cuthbert's house in Berner Street where we met Mrs Hopkins Mr Cuthbert's mother-in-law, my son George, Mr John Marsh and his wife, and proceeded from thence to Mr Cuthbert's house called Woodcott Park near Epsom and spent several day together.




Undated letter from Arthur Cuthbert to his daughter Amelia Marsh.


Berner's Street Sunday Noon.

My Dear Amelia

I am this moment come from my Dear Brother [Alexander Cuthbert], & thrice happy to tell you He is much better, although not entirely out of Danger.  I trust in God he will be returned to Health, his Family, & Friends.

I would wish, if you please, that you would defer your journey to Town till the 24th of this Month, that we may see how my Brother is, & I may have lime to recover myself a little from the terrible state my poor Brother's danger has thrown me into.  You will show this to my Dear Friend Mr Marsh, present my love to Him, my Dear Sally, & little Bob, poor fellow he little knows what Evils threatened him.  Pray remember me kindly to my Worthy Friend Miss Dove.  I feel sensibly for the happy turn Mr Harrison seems at present to have given my Dear Sally's Disorder, & remain ever

My Dear Amelia

Your Affectionate Father 

Arthur Cuthbert

  1. Your Grand Mother & the Colonel desire to present their Love.  Their Conduct on this trying occasion has been perfectly consistent, which is much to say, but really is so.




Letter from Arthur Cuthbert to his daughter Amelia Marsh.  Her first child had been born two months earlier, 18 July.


Bath the 30th September 1786

My Dear Amelia

I have long owed you a letter, & now pay you when I am able, by informing you how happy I am to know that your Dear Self, as well as Good Man, & Son, Our Sally & Miss Dove are in perfect Health & good Spirits, may God long continue these, & every blessing, to you all.

I am just returned from the Duke of Kingston's on Abbey Hot Bath for the first time, & am quite delighted with the Comfort & Cleaness of Bathing & Pumping there.  This is the fifth day of my drinking the Waters, which perfectly agree with me, what benefit I shall receive from them I cannot tell, but I am of the opinion the Hot Bathing & Pumping must be of great Service to my Knees & Arm, & thanks to God I am perfectly well in every other part of my Body.

Be pleased to tell my Dear Friends your Good Man I have today received His kind Letter of the 28th, & I thank him for it, & pray say to all of your Party They must not expect daily Letters from me for my avocations here are many, & some of them I dare day you will allow are of great consequence.  I have to Eat, Drink, Sleep, Dress, Undress, Bath, be Pumped upon, drink Hot Water, & last of all to look out for a Pretty Mamma for you, pray will you & my Dear Sally settle between you, & let my know what Colour of Eye Brows you would like in your Mamma that is to be, & be assured I will abide by your choice.

Be so kind to tell your Good Man also that the Spinny Mr Hicks is here, with his Little Wife, & pretty Daughter.  They all desired to be kindly remembered to Him, & their other Friends of His Party.

Mr Farquhar will continue with me a few days longer, but his presence is unnecessary as I am a perfect Guide to all that is Medical or Medicated at Bath.  The jolly Colonel I hear leaves Town & Mammy on Monday to join me here, then how happy I shall be! With such good company!  Give my love to Mr Marsh, Our Sarah, & young Arthur & best Respects to Miss Dove, & be assured of the sincere Regard & Goodwill of

Your Affectionate Father

Arthur Cuthbert

  1. Please tell your Good Man I shall dearly advise Mr Davies of the intended Position, which will last Him & Mrs Davies . . . years to come unless they drink hard.




Letter from Alexander Cuthbert to Amelia Marsh (nee Cuthbert).  Not dated but presumably written just before 21 January 1788, when Arthur Cuthbert died aged 54.


Milsom Ct, Tuesday Afternoon 3 Oclock

Dear Madam

I have this forenoon received the honor of Your letter and with the utmost satisfaction acquaint You that Your Dear Father has recovered from an attack of inflammation & pain in his right knee the most severe that any mind can possibly imagine.  About 6 Yesterday evening with out any previous symptoms except the swelling which had been high for these last 7 or 8 days, An inflammation came upon the knee so strong & accompanied with such violet pain that the Gentleman of the Faculty had seen nothing equal to it, & were at a loss what to prescribe.  They after much consideration determined on Fomentations, & they producing very little relief, a Blister was applied at 10 oclock last night.

At 2 oclock morning the blister produced the desired effect, the pain before intolerable, was removed, and at 4 morning, Your Father was equally miraculously relaxed, as attacked, & began to get to sleep.  At 8 this morning he was so much recovered as to sit up out of Bed & dress as much as he desired.

The Doctors were with him at noon today and all speak very favourably of his present state & recovery.

I have . . . these particulars to You because in the distraction of my own situation last night at 8 oclock, I dispatched an express to Mr Marsh acquainting him of Your Fathers then dangerous situation & . . . him to come here.  It is probable he is now on the road & that you may have taken some alarm, if he set out suddenly; but I entreat you will quiet your mind, for I assure you I am incapable of a misrepresentation to you, & I affirm to You, Your Father is in no immediate danger, on the contrary he feels himself infinitely relieved, & as before mentioned, every individual of the Gentlemen who attend him consider what has happened as tending to his recovery.

Your Father desires me to present his Love to You & Miss Cuthbert, & best respects to Miss Dove, and to acquaint Miss Cuthbert that it is his request to Her to order the Carriage to be repaired in the compleatest manner.  I beg you will have no hesitation in offering my letters to Mr Marsh for though he is the first person I would intrust a secret to yet you will find none.

My best respects wait on you & the Family & . . .

Dear Madam

Your Affectionate & most Obedient

Humble Servant

Alexander Cuthbert

I will do myself the honor of writing You to morrow, & doubt not the intelligence will give You much pleasure.




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(Will of Arthur Cuthbert) (Portrait) (memorial stone)