On This Day: 7 April 1704

Today in 1704, Bowrey paid his Grinder, Richard Blackburn, £10/4/0 in settlement of his account. Comparison with yesterday’s letters demonstrates the different standards of literacy at the time. Despite being a rough mariner like Bowrey, Robert Masfen had a good hand and was clearly highly literate. Whereas, Blackburn’s bill reads:

Japand for Captin Bowery

fore groces of sisores at

five Shilines a duson

and ten groces of sisores at

fore Shilines a duson

and the receipted reverse reads:

aprill 7 Recevied of Captin Bowery

the Sume of Six tene pound

fore Shilines in foll for Sisors

and all a Counts by me

Richard Blackburn

This may explain why so many receipts in Bowrey’s papers are in his own hand.

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