Click a Title to View a Manuscript
Note: (in flux) = Not Ready Yet
The Mayor's First Passing
Over the Old Bridge
Iconic Moment No. 7
Age: 15, at Colston's School
George Symes Catcott
Publication of Chatterton's
First Rowlean Work
On the 1st of October 1768
A Mysterious Article Appeared
In Felix Farley's Bristol Journal.
The Mayor's first Passing
over the Old Bridge,
an old Manuscript'
Dunhelmus Bristoliensis *
*One of Chatterton's
The Article Created Quite a Stir
It was to bring
Chatterton, Catcott, & Barrett,
The Main Players in the
Together for the first time.
It was the Catalyst
that would affect their lives
more than they could have imagined.
When they First Met
Chatterton was nearly 16
Barrett was 35, & Catcott was 39
The big question is
How much of a role
Did they individually play
In the creation, development
Of the Rowley phenomenon?
The above is the Start of the Poem
It runs to 38 pages in
Tyrwhitt's 1777 edition of
The Original Manuscript is Missing
Tyrwhitt used the Text from
'A copy made by Barrett
From the Original in
The Parlyamente of Sprytes
Written 1768 - Published 1782, 1789
Age: 15, Colston's School
Plaied bie the
Carmelyte Freeres at
Hys Greete Howse
Before Mastre Canynges
And Byshoppe Carpenterre
On dedicatynge the chyrche of
Oure Ladie of Redclefte, hight.
Wroten bie T. Rowleie and J. Iscam
A Job for a Collaborator
The Manuscript Original
According to Taylor (1971)
Is at the British Museum.
The British Museum reference: f.5.
The Auction, A Poem
Written January / February 1769
Contentious or what!
'The Auction, A Poem'
The Beckford Elegy)
As do Other academics
The Auction, A Poem,
Parts were first printed as
A Familiar Epistle to a Friend
In the February & March 1769
Editions of the London Magazine
The Auction, A Poem,
The first full printing
By Kerslake in 1770.
Ǽlla: A Tragycal Enterlude,
or Discoorseynge Tragedie
Epistle to Mastre Canynge on Ǽlla
Letter to the Dynge Mastre Canynge
Written 1769 - Published 1777
Age: 16, Colston's School
Dr. Fry's Transcript. BPL: B6493
The image above is a snippet from Dr. Fry's transcript of a Catcott transcript of Chatterton's original manuscript of Ǽlla: A Tragycal Enterlude, or Discoorseynge Tragedie.
No complete Ms. of Ǽlla in Chatterton's hand is known to exist, which is strange; it must be out there somewhere (he says hopefully). Even the first printing of it, in 1777, was from a Catcott transcript.
Chatterton's letter to Dodsley, 15th February, 1769, has an extract, 'Part of Ǽlle's Speech to his Soldiers going to give Battle to the Danes.........
It is possible that Dr Fry sometimes used a 'copyist,' to transcribe works for him; so, is this a copy in Dr. Fry's handwriting, or not? What would certainly help is a book once owned by Dr. Fry and complete with his annotations - that would be definitive.
The following article is resting here until I move it to its correct position - in a bit of a rush.
In 1792 was published Bristol: an abstract of the city charter. Containing the institution of mayors, recorders, sheriffs, town clerks, and all other officers whatsoever: as also a common council. To which is added, by way of Appendix, a brief historical account of the antient Lords, Constables, & Wardens of Bristol Castle. (They knew how to write a title in those days).
The 1792 edition contains the statement 'Song to Ella', from the 'justly celebrated Rowley', which is a little strange considering that by this time it was commonly accepted that Chatterton was the author of Rowley. I have seen a copy of the 1792 marked as a second edition, and one assumed to be a first edition because it was unmarked, as well as an edition in 1832, which also contains the 'Song' with Rowley as the author. My assumption is that there was an earlier edition of this supposed 1792 'first edition,' probably printed before the 1777 edition of Chatterton's works.
Click the images below to go to the title page or the Song to Ella.
Here's hoping that a Collaborator will help with the following:
ULC (Cambridge), Add. 6295 (unknown hand), f.55.
Historical Society of Pennsylvania: Letter to Dodsley, 15th February 1769
British Museum: f.36 v.
British Museum: (Barrett and an unknown hand) f.87a