Notes to "Cast out from respectability a while:' Anne Murray Halkett's Life in the Manuscripts"
1Alan Bennett, "A Common Assault," Untold Stories (London: Faber and Faber, 2005): 577. See also 568-69: This happened is the most that one can say; to get into why it happened, why it should not have happened, or how one did nothing to make it happen, implies that there is an alternative story that could be sketched out, the denial itself conferring some authenticity on the alternative. I see now how women who had been attacked find themselves incriminated, and how, in classic fashion, by simply recounting the circumstances of an assault, the victim becomes the culprit ..."
2S. C. (?). The Life of the Lady Halket. [The dedication signed: S. C.] Edinburgh: Andrew Symson, Henry Knox, 1701, hereafter cited in the text as Couper (the name is in the records also spelt Cowper or Coupar). The writing of biography changed with the publication of the books by Lytton Strachey and other of the Bloomsbury group (e.g., Geoffrey Scott on Isabelle de Charriere) and their essays on the art of biography (Virginia Woolf's group). See Virginia Woolf's Moments of Being, ed Jeanne Schulkind (NY: HBJ, 1976). Loftis and Stevenson had not known who Anne's biographer was, and demurred even from suggesting whether the writer was a man or woman. However, from the online records and Trill's study of the manuscripts, it is now known that the biographer was Simon Couper, a local Episcopalian minister with Jacobite leanings. See Trill, "Lady Anne Halkett," The Literary Encyclopedia. 15 Nov. 2004 (p. 3); see also General Register for Scotland (old Parish registers): "15th July 1690, Dunfermline: "'The 12th day bout nine hours in the morning being a Saturday, John Christie [Chrystie] precentor had ane manchild born to him of his wife [Jean] Finlay, baptised ye 15th instant by Mr Simon Cowper and called James The godfryes was James, King of Great Britain, France and Ireland defender of ye Faith and James Finley grandfather to the child.'" and Annals of Dumferline: "MR. SIMON COUPAR, who had been deposed by the Presbyteries of Dunfermline and Kirkcaldy, in December, 1693, and the deposition ratified by the Synod of Fife, 9th May, 1694, continued to officiate as Minister of the First Charge of Dunfermline Church till this year (June, 1696)." As in the preface and dedication to Anne's step-daugher-in-law, the widow of the oldest son of Anne's husband by his first wife, S.C. uses the masculine pronoun too; for example, "It's reasonable to expect, that the Publisher [by which S.C. means himself] should give account, what warrand, he can avouch for his Narrative: It will abundantly, he thinks, Satisfie the Reader, to know, That ..." (Preface). To my ears the tone of the dedication also suggests a man talking to a woman and about women as when he talks about "Heroick Vertues . . . of both Sexes" (Dedication). I am indebted to John Loftis, ed. The Memoirs of Anne, Lady Halkett, and Ann, Lady Fanshawe, ed. John Loftis. (Oxford University Press, 1979), hereinafter cited in my text and referred to as Loftis; see David Stevenson, "A Lady and Her Lovers: Anne, Lady Halkett," King or Covenant: Voices from the Civil War. (Melksham, Wiltshire: Cromwell Press, 1996):189-207.
3I quote and am also indebted to a thorough and detailed description of the manuscripts and "stitched books" in the British Library by Margaret J. M. Ezell, "Ann Halkett's Morning Devotions: Posthumous Publication and the Culture of Writing in Late Seventeenth- Century Britain," Prints, Manuscript & Performance: The Changing Relations of the Media in Early Modern England, edd. Arthur F. Marotti and Michael D. Bristol. Columbus: Ohio State U, 2000): 215-34; her important book on the realities of publication in seventeenth-century London, Edinburgh and the provinces, Margaret J. M. Ezell, Social Authorship and the Advent of Print. (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins, 1999); and the long overdue rehabitory account of Joseph Bampfield's character and book, Colonel Bampfield's Apology edd. Paul H. Hardacre and John Loftis, together with Bampfield's Later Career: a Biographical Supplement by John Loftis. (Lewisburg: Bucknell UP, 1993), hereinafter called Bampfield's Apology and Loftis's Supplement. I have been also able to read and begin to study what I found in the Folger Shakespeare Library and what I was able to order in xerox form from the few meditations that were published in 1701 and 1702: [Anne Murray Halkett], Meditations on the twentieth and fifth Psalm ... . (Edinburgh : printed for Mr. Andrew Symson and Mr. Henry Knox, 1701); [Anne Murray Halkett], Instructions for Youth: For the Use of those young Noblemen and Gentleman, whose Education was committed to her Care. (Edinburgh: Printed, and sold by Mr Andew Symson, 1701); [Anne Murray Halkett], Meditations and Prayers, Upon the First Week, with Observations on each Day's Creation: and Considerations on the Seven Capital Vices, To be oppos'd: and their opposit Vertues To be Studied and Practiced. (Edinburgh. Printed, and sold by Mr Andrew Symson, 1701); and Anne Murray Halkett, Meditations upon the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit, mentioned Isaiah XI. 2, 3. As also, meditations upon Jabez his request, ... Together with sacramental meditations on the Lords Supper; and prayers, pious reflections and observations. (Edinburgh : printed by Mr. Andrew Symson, and are to be sold by him and Mr. Henry Knox, 1702).
It's not often commented that Ballard's book is based on a compilation actually put
together by the 18th century scholar and linguist, Elizabeth Elstob (1683-1756); see George
Ballard, "Lady Halket," Memoirs of Several Ladies of Great Britain, ed., introd. Ruth
Perry. (1752; rpt. Detroit: Wayne State UP, 1985): 328-31); Sylvia Harcstark Myers, The
Bluestocking Circle: Women, Friendship, and the Life of the Mind in the Eighteenth Century
(Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1990):129-30.
4 5 6 7 8 9
4Honorable and important exceptions include Ezell (above), "Ann Halkett's Morning Devotions"; Anne Murray, Lady Halkett, The Autobiography, ed. John Gough Nicols and Samuel Rawson Gardiner (Westminster Camden Society), New Series, No. 13, 1875, hereinafter cited in the text as Nichols; Loftis; Stevenson, "A Lady and Her Lovers: Anne, Lady Halkett." A number of the more recent essayists on Anne's life and autobiography quote Couper's book in their bibliography or notes, but from another source (Loftis or the ODNB). Historians of the calibre of Gardiner have mined Halkett's autobiography, but it's also rare for them to read Couper's biography.
5Introspection in Biography: The Biographer's Quest for Self- Awareness, edd. Samuel H. Baron and Carl Pletsch (London: Analytical Press, 1985) is the best discussion of modern biographical art as it's understood today I know of. Boswell figures heavily in it. An example of the genuine biographical impulse which makes the same point about biographical art I do is Richard Holmes, Footsteps: Confessions of a Romantic Biographer (NY: Viking,1985):66-68, 135. Simon Couper is already dealing with a "powerfully received image" of Halkett: in 1701 it seems to have been of an adventuress (not a positive word at the time) who lived a life that left her badly in debt. See Bampfield's Apology and Loftis's Supplement everywhere, but especially 14. See further below.
6See Estelle C. Jelinek, in her "Introduction: Women's Autobiography and the Male Tradition," Women's Autobiography: Essays in Criticism, ed. introd. Estelle Jelinek (Bloomington: Indiana UP, 1980), 18-19. A contemporary instance of the multiform autobiography is Anne Clifford's; when studied this way it becomes a masterly life-writing; see, e.g., B. G. MacCarthy's study in The Female Pen: Women Writers and Novelists, 1621- 1818, prefaced by Janet Todd (1946; rpt NY: NY University Press, 1994):56-66; Sharon Seelig, Autobiography and Gender in Early Modern Literature: Reading Women's Lives, 1600-1680 (Cambridge UP, 2006), 34-35. Two instances of the form which may be familiar to my English-reading audience where the editor has been faithful (in both instances the editor was a close friend, correspondent and lived with the autobiographer) are the autobiographies of Margaret Wilson Oliphant as published and "arranged" by her second cousin, Annie L. Walker Coghill; Harriet Martineau's Autobiography, as published and "concluded" by her close friend and correspondent, Maria Weston Chapman. The Autobiography and Letters of Mrs. M. W. W. Oliphant, arranged and edited by Mrs Harry Coghill (New York: Dodd, Mead, 1899); Harriet Martineau's Autobiography, 3 volumes edited and completed by memorials by Maria Weston Chapman, introd. Gaby Weiner (1877; rpt. in 2 vols. London: Virago, 1983). For two 17th century examples, see Joanna Moody, ed. The Private Life of An Elizabethan Lady: The Diary of Margaret Hoby, 1599-1605. (Stroud: Alan Sutton, 1998); Lady Anne Clifford, The Diary of Anne Clifford, 1616-1619: a critical edition, ed. Katherine O. Acheson. (New York: Garland, 1995); Clifford, D. J. H., ed. The Diaries of Lady Anne Clifford. (Gloucester: Alan Sutton, 1992). But see Domna T. Stanton, "Autogynography," The Female Autograph (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1987):9-13, where she argues this is stereotypical thinking and points to male autobiographies which are discontinuous, fragmented, evasive and female autobiographies which are linear and present a public life.
7I have compared most of the original date and days in the Anne's manuscript narrative and those Couper copied out from her early and late diaries to dates and days in modern computed-generated calendars and for the years in question Anne has been on almost all occasions accurate. We can see from her extant manuscript she had available to her a number of letters which she saved and chose not to print but could have. It's long been recognized that the kind of detail we find in the memoirs presupposes a preternatural memory. While it's true that many of the phrases put in the protagonists' mouths cannot have actually been said (Bampfield is given stilted lines appropriate to a hero in a long French romance, "I must conclude my selfe the most unfortunate of men," Loftis 28-29), the accuracy of the dates and precision of detail are astonishing unless we concede Anne kept journal entries. Too often this is brushed aside as "just the sort of thing that lingers in the mind of the average woman"; see Margaret Bottrall, "'A kind of picture left behind me ...'", Everyman a Phoenix: Studies in Seventeenth-Century Autobiography (London: Murray, 1958):151-52.
8See Ezell, "Ann Halkett's Morning Devotions," 218-25.
9In a culture (such as ours) where the polished and well-shaped narrative is still the reigning standard for publication grave problems are presented by women's fragmented works which characteristically end abruptly, manifest sudden startling transformations, where coherent modes of "interior discourse" and candid self-discovery suddenly turn disingenuous or become bare recordings of dates and unelaborated daily acts. Some editors have published an accurate framing drawn from the woman's autobiographical materials (of whatever kind they are), and in uncensored forms, but most have not and instead reframed the text and abridged or rewritten it in accordance with agendas and norms of their own, the subject's near relatives or friends, or what the publisher feels will be acceptable to an imagined conventional audience. Even in recent scholarly feminist anthologies, the importance of the mother-daughter relationship in women's autobiographies is erased through abridgement.
The most important figure in Margaret Cavendish's very short life of herself is her mother, and after the mother her husband and her husband's scholarly and frail or crippled and short-lived brother. Cavendish's long passages about her mother and the shorter but passionately devoted ones about her brother-in-law have been cut and thus the excerpt is wholly unrepresentative of the original document in Her Own Life: Autobiographical Writings by Seventeenth-Century Englishwomen, edd. Elspeth Graham, and Elaine Hoby, ed. (London: Routledge, 1989):89-99. See Marianne Hirsh, "Mothers and Daughters: Review-Essay," Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society, 7:1 (1981):200-221; and Margaret Cavendish, Duchess of Newcastle, The Life of William Cavendish, Duke of Newcastle, to which is added "A True Relation of my Birth, Breeding and Life (London: Everyman, 1915), 182-213 (this includes the original introductory epistle). For the opening pages and reversions to her mother, see, 188-98); for the importance of her scholarly brother-in-law's inironic and empathetic support to her, 204-5). An essay which covers the importance of the mother-daughter bond in 17th century women autobiographers is Mary Beth Rose's "Gender, Genre, and History: Seventeenth-Century English Women and the Art of Autobiography," Women in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance: Literary and Historical Perspectives, ed. Mary Beth Rose (Syracuse UP 1986):267-69.
Two useful perceptive essays on Anne Halkett's autobiography which attempt to place
her amid other 17th century women autobiographers and various contemporary genres are
Seelig, Autobiography and Gender in Early Modern Literature, 112-30; Gabriele
Rippl's 'The conflict betwixt love and honor' - the autobiography of Anne, Lady Halkett,"
Feminist contributions to the literary canon: setting standards of taste, ed. Susanne
Fendler (Lewiston, NY; Lampeter: Mellen Press, 1997):17-29. While Anne Murray Halkett was a
fervent Royalist, like Joseph Bampfield (a Presbyterian Royalist), she was strongly influenced by
Puritan high-minded educational currents. No one has written adequately on how the two
apparently diverse strains (strong Bible-based ethical behavior and equally strong loyalty to a
social arrangement ordered hierarchically beginning with a king, lords, and bishops) influenced
people at the time. Sheila Ottway does attempt a general such contextualization in
Designing Disencumbrance: The Representation of Self in Autobiographical Writings by
Seventeenth-Century English Women (University of Groningen, 1988).
10Mason puts it this way, women autobiographers repeatedly write their lives in ways that "ground their]identity in a relationship with a chosen other (or others)." See Mary G. Mason's "The Other Voice: Autobiographies of Women Writers," Autobiography: Essays Theoretical and Critical, ed. James Olney (Princeton: Princeton UP, 1980):207-35, especially 209-10. Mason's essay has been influential because she is basically correct about women's autobiographies. For another 19th century example, compare "Diary 1879" and "Diary 1880" to all the others in The Journals of George Eliot, edd. Margaret Harris and Judith Johnston (Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1998), 149-214. Mason would say that when Oliphant's sons had all died, when Eliot's beloved partner had died, this two women seems to have lost their ability "to write openly about themselves." I would put it that they lost the imagined audience they cared about as well as the social justification of their existence, their place in imagined social communities.
For comparable French and Italian situations where the unpublished autobiography
was a single narrative surrounded by fragmented, interrupted and formless materials which were
then added to, censored and reshaped according to the criteria of the editor or publisher who
wanted to alter the life to suit a stereotype or agenda of his or her own or a later era, see Nancy
Miller's "Writing Fictions: Women's Autobiographies in France," Subject to Change:
Reading Feminist Criticism (NY: Columbia UP, 1988), 102-23 (e.g. what was done to Daniel
Stern or Marie D'Aoult's journals) and Elisabetta Marchetti, "Le lettere di Teresa di Gesu. Prime
traduzioni et edizioni italiane," Per lettera: Le scrittura epistolare femminile tra archivio e
tipografia secoli XV - XVII, a cura di Gabriella Zarri. (Roma: Viella, Libreria editrice, 1999):
263-86. The recent Broadview edition of Oliphant's autobiography (ed. Elisabeth Jay, 1988) has
dropped the last 2/3s of the original and replaced it with an apparatus of "contemporary
materials," which in effect erases much that is important about's Oliphant life which she wrote
about in her letters. The new book is much shorter than Coghill's edition, even with the new
apparatus. For the situation for modern biographers, see Ian Hamilton's Keepers of the
Flame: Literary Estates and the Rise of Modern Biography (London: Pimlico. 1993).
11We see beyond the chosen other, how circumspect attention, prudence, and forethought over money attached to the woman was (and remains) important to a woman's self- respect and identity when Anne spends a spent a year and 7 months in London trying to get rid of her debts before marrying Halkett (Iest he or a family member after him be made responsible), and is arrested for debt twice (Loftis 81, 85); also in the many passages by Couper where he points out that Anne continually struggled against her indebtedness and also brought a legacy of virtue in place of money and rank e.g., Couper 30-31 (the period of well over a year the Halketts lived in London while Anne attempted to wrest an inheritance back), 50-53 (the harassed close of her life). One of the final anecdotes in Couper's biography: Anne Halkett finally answers a friend's repeated demand she stop her charities because she is so much in debt that
the true case was, that she could easily command less or more to relieve the poor or serve the Sick, and while she had it, she could not deny it: Whereas it required greater Summs to pay off Debts, which she could not command [whereupon] She wrote to a Friend, concerning some proposals, which, if they took effect might contribute to her ease; By his return she found that no relief could be expected that way (Couper 51)
The issue is made explicit in Lady Elizabeth Delaval's autobiographical meditations; see Helen
Wilox, "Her Own Life, Her Own Living? Text and Materiality in Seventeenth-Century
Englishwomen's Autobiographical Writings," Betraying Ourselves: Forms of Self-
Representation in Early Modern English Texts, edd. Henk Dragstra, Sheila Ottway, and
Helen Wilcox. (NY: St Martins Press, 2000):105-19.
12Freud's analysis of the power and function of the virginity taboo in later 19th century Europe is applicable to Anne Murray Bampfield Halkett (to give her all her names for once) since Christian religious doctrines functioned in the 17th century in ways analogous to that of the 19th. The woman is made to feel she is the wife or belongs to the man whom she has first had sexual intercourse with. Halkett considered Bampfield to have been her first husband: she writes after she has been argued and reasoned with by a clergyman at length against this conviction that "I could nott thinke itt lawfull for mee to marry another", and "yett I was nott fully convinced butt that itt might bee a sin in mee to marry" (Loftis 76-77). From her earliest extant to her latest meditations, in the diary entries copied out by Couper in the latter part of his biography, and in the narrative manuscript there is repeated evidence that Anne Murray Halkett never forgot nor was allowed to forget that she had been "shamed," been a target of "reproach," and is experiencing "perpetuall disquiet" (Loftis 76). "Disquiet" and "misfortune" are Anne's words, the first repeated in her autobiography, meditations and copied out by Couper in his biography (e.g. Couper 44; Loftis 76: "what would be a perpetuall disquiet to mee", 76. For a concise explanation of the forms marriage could take as well as the confused state they were in during the interregnum due to well-meaning attempts at reform and consistent regulation, see Chris Durston, "'Unhallowed Wedlocks:' The Regulation of Marriage during the English Revolution," The Historical Journal, 31:1 (1988):45-59. See Sigmund Freud, "The Taboo of Virginity," Sexuality and the Psychology of Love, trans. James Strachey, ed., introd. Philip Rieff (NY: Collier, 1963):70-86. See [Anne Murray Halkett], Meditations upon Jabez his request, p 83. The last part of this book contains a series of secular meditations which recall those of 17th century writers upon ethics, p. 83. It's not surprize to find Anne Halkett meditating "Of retirement," 76, "Of marriage and widowhood," 77-78; "Of the burden of Debt," 79, but there are some surprises, like "A Prayer on a long Continued Storm of Frost and Snow, January 24, 1684, 72. At the opening of the book too there are revealing passage, e.g., "The occasion she was detained somewhere" and decides to "fill time" writing about it. Nonetheless, she wrote to soothe, calm, compose and cheer herself.
There are a number of striking parallels between the way Anne Murray Halkett presents herself and Bampfield's excuses for keeping their marriage private and the way Henrietta Palmer Stannard presents a heroine who in another unusually candid and sympathetic protrayal of a woman who discovers herself to have married a man married to another and who does not leave him. See Henrietta Palmer Stanndard's A Blameless Woman (London, 1897). Stannard wrote the book using a pseudonym, so unacceptable was it still at the time for write openly of such a situation. In most treatments until the 20th century (when divorce became widespread), the woman is presented as a Machiavellian femme fatale who is herself the bigamous culprit or who has lured a man away from his legitimate wife.
The stigma supporting marriage still operates in scholarship today: in a 1981 review
in Modern Philology, a scholar described Anne Murray's decision to adhere to
Bampfield as adultery; see Mark Kishlansky, "Review," Loftis, John, ed. Memoirs of Anne,
Lady Halkett, and Ann, Lady Fanshawe. Oxford University Press, 1979, Modern
Philology, 78:4 (1981):431. A number of the recent sympathetic essays on Halkett evade
the issue by turning what happened to Anne into a romance.
13 14 15 16 16 18 19
13On Anne and Joseph's shared ability to leave an impression different from the truth without lying, see Bampfield's Apology and Loftis's Supplement, 245-47. One can see an equivocation equal to Anne's when Bampfield excusing himself for having told her his wife was dead, says: "nor had noe designe butt what I thought justifiable" (Loftis 28-29): his design was well-meaning; his wife was ill and would soon die and they would be in Holland together safely. See Seelig on Anne's equivocation, 128, 188n33. Couper consistently says Anne's oldest brother was named Charles and her second oldest Henry. According to Loftis, Henry was the oldest and Charles the second oldest brother. . Her father, Thomas Murray, is renamed Robert too. The details of indebtedness found in Couper's biography are scatted in Loftis's notes to his edition.
14Holmes, Footsteps, 135.
15See Sara Heller Mendelson, "Stuart women's diaries and occasional memoirs," Women in English Society, 1500-1880, ed. Mary Prior (London & NY: Metheun, 1985):184-86.
16One Scottish historian has suggested that the opening two pages included remarks on Anne's rank through her Scots lineage; four scholars, two of them historians, who have used Couper's biography that the original manuscript narrative's ending is not representative and went on to deal with Anne's marriage. She begins to describe actual politicians and their wives in Cromwellian Scotland. See David Stevenson, "A Lady and Her Lovers," 205 ("perhaps the marriage was dealt with originally"); Loftis suggests this, and Nicholls and Gardener feel "there is some danger of assuming that what survives [of Anne Murray, Lady Halkett's manuscript] is representative of what was written." Some reviewers also suggest that the book went on to cover Anne's later life; see Mark A. Kishlansky, a review of "The Memoirs ...", 431. The idea that the original manuscript must've ended very quickly after the happy marriage derives from the paradigm that this memoir is in effect a romance novel, and it has repeatedly been treated as superior because it is; see Rose, "Gender, Genre, and History," 271 ("marriage is constructed as the destiny which the female hero struggles through romantic conflict to achieve"); the idea is taken to an apothesis in Donna Landry's "Eroticizing the Subject, or Royals in Drag: Reading the Memoirs of Anne, Lady Halkett," The Intersections of the Public and Private Spheres in Early Modern England, edd. Paula Backscheider and Timothy Dystal (London, Portland, Ore: Frank Cass, 1996): 134-49.
16See Caroline Breashears, "Scandalous Categories: Classifying the Memoirs of Unconventional Women," Philological Quarterly, 82 (2003):187-200; and "The Female Appeal in Great Britain, 1676-126". Paper given at panel, "Womens Autobiography in the Long Eighteenth Century," Montreal ASECS, 30 March 2006; Seelig, Autobiography and Gender, 33-40; Elizabeth Goldmith, "Publishing the Lives of Hortense and Marie Mancini," Going Public: Women and Pubilshing in Early Modern France, edd. Elizabeth Goldsmith and Dena Goodman, edd. (Ithaca: Cornell UP, 1995):31-45. Anne's contemporaries who wrote autobiographies were doing the same: Lucy Hutchinson, Ann Fanshawe, Anne Clifford wanted to be recognized and remembered and the only way to do this was write down what they had done, however marginalizing the perspective put on their deeds. I think it also important to remember that as with with many other autobiographies and biographies too, by men and women, Halkett and Simon Couper expect us to read their texts as only fully explained by what is also not in the text, by what happened in real life and has appeared in other texts.Umberto Eco, Six Walks in the Fictional Woods (Harvard UP, 1994):1-25, 75-96, and my own "Trollope's An Autobiography," Trollope on the Net(London: Hambledon Press, 2001):182-84.
18Delany, Paul. "Female Autobiographers," British Autobiography in the Seventeenth Century (London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1969):162-63. He also says Anne's narrative here shows "neurotic oversensitivity." In the episode Sir Charles attempts to seduce Anne in the most casual of ways; Mr Nichols' flattery is meant to see how far he can go sexually with her. She is being sexually harassed by powerful men in the household. In her perceptive article, Kearns, Judith.: "Fashioning innocence: rhetorical construction of character in the Memoirs of Anne, Lady Halkett," Texas Studies in Literature and Language (46:3) 2004, 340-62, Judith Kearns devotes a great deal of space to refuting Delany by thematic analysis. She seems herself to forget Anne Murray was now broke, homeless, and married to a bigamous stigmatized spy. Who would take her in?
19My reading of Bampfield's behavior is as follows: On the evening of the visit of the solicitor from Cornwall to announce CB's wife death (Loftis dates this November/December 1648 while CB hiding in London, Bampfield's Apology and Loftis' Supplement, 245), Bampfield put on mourning but told tells Anne he will not make it public "lest the fortune hee had by his wife and shee injoyed while shee lived should bee sequestred" (Loftis 27) She says he was not grief- striken. I suggest he was told his wife was ill, possibly dying, and like Jane Austen's Tom Bertram who assuaged his conscience when his behavior led Sir Thomas Bertram to sell his younger brother, Edmund's patrimony, Bampfield hoped and thought it was reasonable the obstacle (in Bertram's case a new clergyman) would "pop off." He kept hoping and so did Anne. Then on the day of Bampfield's "extraordinary melancholy" (Loftis dates this after January and the king's death but early in 1649, Bampfield's Apology and Loftis' supplement, 245) and where he tells her he has reason to believe his wife alive (Loftis 27), and puts her on the other side of the room, he has decided he needs to leave staying in hiding; he must go from her; he knows his wife is not yet dead even if very sick, so he confesses in order to get away. He has got to make a living and is ambitious. He could hope his wife would die soon, and in the meantime Anne go into the country to live with her friend, Anne Howard. He'll trust to his luck. But seeing her go distraught and genuinely loving her, he says he's sending a man to the area to see what's what (Ned B). Like her he's good at statements where he tells literal truth (de facto) but not truth in spirit: "God is my wittnese I am nott guilty of the contrivance of the report of her beeing dead, nor had noe designe butt what I thought justifiable." He may not have been guilty of that contrivance, and he thought what he was doing was justifiable or at any rate he would not be found out and he and Anne would be man and wife and no one look into a discrepancy between their bethrothal time and his wife's death. Finding Anne so distraught he felt he could not tell her his wife alive so now he does lie: he says servant discovered she was dead and saw the grave. Reference to "sequestration" comes up here as he again reminded her of why they couldn't tell (original lie) and hoped that no one might know about their bethrothal. He reckons without her brother-in-law. See Loftis 27-29. The thinking Bampfield and Anne manifest is found in closely comparable arguments in the couple who chose to live on together in Stannard's A Blameless Woman.
Anne Murray may, like Bampfield (and apparently Catherine Sydenham's mother too)
have hoped that the very ill, unfortunate woman would die. On the unfortunate Catherine
Sydenham's mother's possible pretense her daughter was dead to secure some property, see
Bampfield's Apology and Loftis's Supplement, 245-46. One of her powerful male
relatives was so fanatic against Parliamentarians he shot people on sight. She was early on a
20I summarize Anne's episodes of illness here. In this case the pagination is taken from Nicholls's edition which I have put on the Net as an etext edition, and accompanied with notes The Autobiography of Anne Murray, Lady Halkett. Anne became distraught when in London in very early 1649 Bampfield first tried to tell her his wife might be alive (p. 27), but the genuine sickness come on at Naworth in December 1649/January 1650 (this the first of her illnesses and there is no sign of malaria before this or "weakness", pp. 32-33): she can't speak to others, is out of it ("My distemper increased, and I grew so weake I could hardly speake.." "Aprehending the aproach of death," p 32). She is really hysterical and it is to be understood as the reaction of a woman who has lived with a man for 17 months as his wife [?], but then why didn't she get pregnant?"' this first time she recovered quickly when advised by Mrs Cullcheth. Again during this time she had her first experience of "the effects of melancholy vapours" (p. 36) and told Mr Nicholls the truth about her past. She is 26 and he 27. He makes the second of his great escapes (the first was in 1643; see Bampfield's Apology, 39, 99, 251).
Again in late October 1650 at Fyvie when Bampfield comes to visit her (p. 65), "betwixt both I was brought into so great a distemper that I expected now an end to all my misfortunes .." (p. 65). Again this does not read like malaria or a physiologically caused illness; it is no less real. It should be said he does seem innocent at times, really believes wife dead, "whose sattisfaction in seeing mee was much abated to find mee so weake, and for seeming so douptfull of the reports concerning him" (p. 66)
May 1653: Here she collapses upon being confronted with evidence she felt she could not dispute with Bampfield gone: this is just after she is after helping Balcarres and his wife: "violentt bloudy fluxe," "none saw mee that expected life for mee"( p. 87), terrible pain: "I beged some releefe from the violentt paine I had, which was in that extreamitty that I never felt any thing exceed itt", she is at "the gates of death" (p. 88).
Spring 1564: She collapses once last time during this memoir when Halkett was strongly pressuring her to marry him in 1654 and 1655: "fell into a feaverish distemper, p 94, "some people to say that I fell sicke with heartbreake" (p. 94)
During these repeated episodes she seems to have run a high fever ("feaverish distemper"). The last times it seems to me she has some other sickness to, and my guess is malaria. Symptoms: She suffered bad headeaches (the "brain fever" from thwarted and traumatic love experiences found in Victorian novels from Gaskell's Cousin Phillis to Trollope's Small House at Allington and The Duke's Children). It's possible she had malaria which was worsened at intervals when she was under high stress. Her weakened health probably led to giving her birth to weak neonates too. In Simon Couper's 1701 Life, he refers several times to her "weak constitution." Couper is discreet and only records the illnesses that occurred after her marriage to Halkett. He characterizes her as in bad health and of a weak constitution throughout so I suspect she may have had malaria. This would help explain why three of her children died so young. She, alas, probably saw this as God's judgement on her, as a punishment; see Couper 30, 32. Her terror of God can be seen in her writing The Mother's Will to the unborn Child while waiting to give birth.
It's appropriate to bring in here the times the memoir slips over and were probably the
periods (around 23 months out of 4 and 1/2 years) Anne cohabited with Bampfield as this act on
behalf of Balcarres is one last act (that we know of) on behalf of Balcarres, Bampfield's supporter:
1) late spring into summer 1648 to January 1649. She is 25-26. Anne Murray and Joseph
Bampfield married and lived together, perhaps in Holland. 9 months; 2) January 1649-September
1649, another clandestine cohabitation in London. 9 months; 3) Fall 1652 to February 1653, love
affair resumed (he quietly comes into her room at night), in Edinburgh. 5 more months. In
addition, the brief encounters: two meetings where they come together emotionally and perhaps
physically, one hysterical which she deals with by getting very sick: in late October 1650 -- last
week is 26th-31st October, Saturday through Thursday, Fyvie, 2 days and 2 nights; September
1652, Bampfield intercepts Anne at Floors; the adieu, Sunday night, the 10th of December 1654,
London, 1 night.
21 22 23
21Put another way, Anne Murray was not not seeking a mate because however outside the loop of respectability and safety Bampfield was (due to Charles II's intense dislike of Bampfield and Cromwell's justified distrust of him and his poverty), she felt he was her husband. Loftis tends to agree with Bampfield that Charles II's detested him because he made public Charles's own failure to rescue his father from imprisonment and therefore death; I suggest that later incident (19 November 1653) where Bampfield publicly defied Charles and spoke (as they say) "truth to power" and said he must turn to Charles's enemies in order to survive, and Bampfield's connections with the Scots Presbyterian royalists who had so humiliated Charles also made Bampfield (and Bampfield's close associate Lord Balcarres) convenient scapegoats. Charles could not take out his rage on genuinely wealthy and powerful people.
22I agree with Mary Beth Rose when she argues that Halkett's autobiography is powerful because Anne centers on her relationship to her mother, Jane Drummond Murray, governess (as Anne tells us) to two of Charles II's children (Loftis 20), and "refrains from idealizing her." Seelig says (more frankly) that Halkett presents her mother as "harsh and vindictive," 116; see also Rose, "Gender, Genre, and History," 268-69. Rose argues that Anne's autobiography is so superior to those by Margaret Cavendish, Ann Fanshawe and Alice Thornton because (among other traits) alone among 17th century women autobiographers Anne does not idealize or sentimentalize her mother. This is not quite true, as readers of Lucy Hutchinson's brief memoir will recall. Lucy Hutchinson, "The Life of Mrs Hutchinson, written by herself, a Fragment," in Memoirs of Colonel Hutchinson, ed., introd. (London: Everyman, 1995):15. Hutchinson does break off when she begins to write of her mother -- or her text was destroyed. Hutchinson's presentation of her mother's love life and her mother's dislike of her daughter's intelligence and power of self-determination were noted in another paper given at the panel, "Womens Autobiography in the Long Eighteenth Century," Montreal ASECS, 30 March 2006: Robert Mayer's "Lucy Hutchinson's Autobiographical Career."
23The development of Anne Murray's personality has not quite adequately dealt with because none of the revealing childhood anecdotes Simon Couper retells have been reprinted. Two disclose one of the traits Couper calls a fault: her "passion" or quick willingness to show anger and justified suspicion. He later tells us her hot-temper caused some strains in her marriage to Halkett (Couper 29). We also see how she was tended to melancholy, self-dramatization, was susceptible to persuasion through manipulation based on religious doctrine, and herself quick- witted and alertly intuitive enough to recognize unacknowledged sexual tactics and teasing:
In one of her Childish play's being anger'd by her Sister, in her passion she bit her Sisters hand; but upon her Sisters gentle Reproof, saying only look here what you have done! she retired and Wept most bitterly; aggravating the Offense to all the hight she could, to make herself the most sensible of the fault; and from that time never did the like, nor ever after used these Childish Play's which had occasioned it.
24For Bampfield's close association with the Scots Presbyterians and particularly Balcarres, see Bampfield's Apology and Loftis's supplement, 76-80, 132-34, 165, 168, 238-39, 249; Robertson, Moray, 86; and Eva Scott, The King in Exile: The Wanderings of Charles II from June 1646 to July 1654. (NY: Dutton, 1905). 296-97, 395-96, and David Stevenson, Revolution and Counter Revolution in Scotland, 1644-51 (Edinburgh: John Donald, 2003):122-79.
25These books were a prize possession of the Lindsay clan; in the mid-19th century a descendent was still praising their original collector, Lord Balcarres's grandfather, and printed letters by Lady Anna Mackenzie about how much she and her son valued them. See Alexander Crawford Lindsay, Lives of the Lindsays; or, A Memoir of the houses of Crawford and Balcarres. 3 Vols. (London: Murray, 1849):2:1-3, 12-13; and Lord Alexander Lindsay, Master of Crawford and Balcarres, A Memoir of Lady Anna Mackenzie, Countess of Balcarres and Afterwards of Argyll (1621-1706) (Edinburgh: Edmonston and Douglas, 1868):52.
26There have been a number of studies lately of the self-esteem and power conferred on royalist and gentry women due to their rank and Anglican beliefs; viz., Carol Barash, English Women's Poetry, 1649-1714: Politics, Community and Linguistic Authority (Oxford: Oxford UP, 1999), and Hero Chalmers, Royalist Women Writers: 1650-1689 (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 2004); but the older view of the era itself turning over to women of all types and ranks a space in which to find roles outside that of wife, mother, and daughter, seem to me the more central one. See Keith Thomas "Women and the Civil War Sects," Past and Present, 13 (1958):42-62; Margaret George, Women in the First Capitalist Society: Experiences in Seventeenth Century England (Urbana: Illinois UP, 1988); and Stevie Davies, Unbridled Spirits: Women of the English Revolution, 1640-1660 (The Woman's Press, 1998). Although she continually denied her desire to function publicly and record her participation in history, Lucy Hutchinson was clearly similarly motivated.
27See Mendellson, "Stuart Women's Diaries," 195; In the later 1640s, perhaps while or after Bampfield was imprisoned, she uses the word "shame" in her paraphrases and comments repeated, e.g., "My God, I trust in thee, let me not be ashamed," and prays for Bampfield: "I will not intercede only for myself, but for those also who are part of me, as being thine, even those that wait on thee ... Many prisoners and Captives, oppressed and persecuted wait on thee .." See Mendelson 195, and [Anne Murray Halkett], Meditations on the twentieth and fifth Psalm ... (Edinburgh : printed for Mr. Andrew Symson and Mr. Henry Knox, 1701), 7, 9, 10; see also [Anne Murray Halkett] Meditations upon Jabez his request, ... Together with sacramental meditations on the Lords Supper; and prayers, pious reflections and observations (Edinburgh : printed by Mr. Andrew Symson, and are to be sold by him and Mr. Henry Knox, 1702), 78-79. Although Anne avoids using the word "shame" in her narrative, it comes up quickly in her early meditations; Simon Couper is continually anxious to show how she tried to settle her debts, obtain her inheritance and was aware that unlike Halkett's first wife (the niece of an Earl, the powerful Argyle), she originally (before marriage) had a humble (and sullied) status.
28Anne tells of her agony when in October 1650 Bampfield visits her in Fyvie, and she struggles to keep him at a distance, while repeating how all around her supported the story that his wife was indeed dead (Loftis 56-58, also 68). She tells us that in Edinburgh in fall 1652 after nightfall Bampfield would regularly join the conspirators, how she was made uncomfortable by the mean teasing of the women servants, Crew and Jane Hambledon: "several times ... shee had observed a gentleman come privately to my chamber and sayd she knew that I and severalls looked upon him as one I intended to marry, but hee should never bee my husband (Loftis 69-70). She also writes of her sense of deep loss and anxiety when Bampfield had to leave: "Itt is not to bee imagined butt my trouble was great to part with him considering the hazards he was exposed to" (Loftis 70). Through Couper's biography we can glimpse her in 1672 watching Bampfield's career from afar when she mourns the death of Bampfield's second powerful and faithful patron, the Dutch republican leader, John de Witt (Couper 38),
29The five pages of Couper's book which cover Anne's fourteen year marriage suggest the matter that was torn away included the history of Anne's pregnancies, childbirths and deaths of three of her children at a young age, and her writings at the time; a futile trip to London with Halkett and his two sons, and litigation to retrieve her estate; and some embittering financial and social betrayals: "none fail[ed] her more, than they who had made greatest Professions of Kindness, and none proving more real Friends (though to little purpose) than they from whom she least expected it" (Couper 30-35, 31). The last fourteen pages provides much evidence of Anne's hysteria upon the loss of this kind man: she vows to live and does live in ways that show her depriving herself of joy and flagellating herself emotionally continually. We see Halkett's oldest son did not adequately provide for his father's widow because he was never reconciled to the second marriage and resented his father's choice of a woman without title or property, with a history of shame, continued unconventional behavior (her charities and surrounding herself with poor people, apparently allowing them to eat with her, are not approved of) and inconvenient intensely pro-Stuart loyalties (e.g., Couper 46-47; Loftis 201n60, 206n86.).
30Ezell, "Ann Halkett's Morning Devotions," 227-28
31In the first scene of John Fletcher's The Humorous Lieutenant (c. 1619), at King Antigonous' court, Celia is treated disrespectfully and rebuffed at court (she has no right to be there), until the prince kisses her in public. Then she is fawned upon. Celia then comments ironically on the abrupt change of behavior of the others at court. See Fletcher, John. A Critical Edition of John Fletcher's The Humorous Lieutenant, ed. Philip Oxley. The Renaissance Imagination, Volume 24. NY: Garland, 1987):I:i: 227-33:
My servants, and my state:
Anne not only works to vindicate her brother's reputation, she wants to have recognition from
Charles herself. Among the deeds she wanted respect for which I've omitted are her litigation in
London shortly after her marriage, her charities, and her attempts to establish her son in a niche
for an educated gentleman. She clearly also wanted to influence people's devotional behavior.
32 33 34
32Halkett, Meditations upon Jabez his request, 83. Josephine Donovan, "Toward a Women's Poetics," Signs: Studies in Women's Literature, 3:1-2 (1984):99-110, 101. In Donovan's terms, we see in this fable Anne's "psychic alienation" from herself. Margaret Anne Doody argues in "Sensuousness in the Poetry of Eighteenth-Century Women Poets," Womens Poetry in the Enlightenment: The Making of the Canon, 1730- 1820, edd. Isobel Armstrong and Virginia Blain ( NY:St Martins Press, 1999):3-32 Doody argues that women identify with the creatures, project an intense bodily libido towards them, and use the metaphors and imagery that result as ways of making statements about themselves as well as larger issues like injustice, cruelty, self-ownership, the relationship of creatures to one another (see 17-25).
33That women went to other women may be seen in how very late in life as widow she travelled twice, once to Aberdeen and once to Edinburgh; in both cases, she visits a women, in the first case (1672) the then Duchess of Lauderdale for help with her son. The Duchess showed "great civilities" but "she could not do anything for him" (Couper 38, 40).
34Part Two of my paper will discuss the criticism which has wrongly aligned Halkett's book: I'll show how the paradigms change over decades as romantic and conventionally religious ideas for women change. Then I'll provide a genuinely enlightening alignment, and analysis of Halkett's character as quietly bold and individualistic.