Travelling in style

I have written before about Macintosh’s desire to travel in comfort whilst at sea and this trait is exemplified in a long shopping list Macintosh sent to his friend Anthony Richardson on 1 March 1772. “Friendship”, Mackintosh noted, “is pleasing, but it exposes one to trouble”. This was, indeed, true for Richardson who was required, at Macintosh’s behest, to hunt down a wide range of goods: everything from “2 Guernsey Shirts, the largest sizes from Waller hosier, nearly opposite to St. Katherine Street” to “a Machine for examining the Qualities of Soil, without the labour of digging up it will penetrate into the Earth & when taken out may be opened, & each Strata of Mold is discovered within the Machine”. Macintosh’s request for a travelling case is, however, particularly interesting for what it reveals about his personal preferences and quotidian activities (especially as they relate to eating and drinking).

To bring him out, a neat & strong Travelling Case, on which Mr. R must prove his fancy, to contain a sizeable Tea Pot, a small Coffee Pot, A Milk Pot, 6 ½ Pint Cups and Saucers, 2 Pint Basons & Saucers, 6 Shallow, & 6 Soap Plates, 3 small Dishes, all of China; A Tea Bottle with a wide Mouth, a Sugar Bottle with Do., 6 pint decanters, engraved one for Syrop [sic], two for Liquor, two for Madeira & one for Claret, a Mustard, Vinegar, Pepper & oil Cruets engraved also, all with ground Stoppers; A Salt Seller contrived with a Top to preserve the Salt at Sea; 6 neat short Wine Glasses & 1 Do. wine & water Glasses, 6 Table & Tea spoons, with his Crest engraved on them; 6 Ivory handled Knives and Forks; a Pint Bottle for Bitters, with a ground Stopper, & Bitters engraved on it; several spare appartments [sic] for Towels, Medicines & fishing apparatus; two razors, & shaving utensils Combs, if a neat small Tureen of any figure could be stow’d away in it, it would be pleasing, and in that case a small Tureen silver Ladle. A small drawer to contain Ink, Sand, Wafers, Pens, and a quire of 4t Paper.—

Bibliothèque municipale d’Avignon, MS.1297, Macintosh to Anthony Richardson, 1 March 1772, fo. 233

Leave a Reply