Progress update, 16 to 22 March 2013, and this week’s finds

By Tim Causer, on 22 March 2013

Welcome to the progress update for the period 16 to 22 March, during which time further excellent progress has been made: 19,530 words (including TEI mark-up) have been transcribed during the past seven days.

5,273 manuscripts have now been transcribed or partially-transcribed, which is an increase of 38 on last week’s total. Of these transcripts, 4,999 (94%) are complete – nearly there!

The more detailed state of progress is as follows:

  • Box 2: 394 manuscripts transcribed of 753 (52%)
  • Box 27: 350 of 350 (100%)
  • Box 35: 279 of 439 (63%)
  • Box 50: 135 of 198 (67%)
  • Box 51: 358 of 940 (38%)
  • Box 62: 53 of 565 (9%)
  • Box 70: 257 of 350 (73%)
  • Box 71: 663 of 663 (100%)
  • Box 72: 608 of 664 (91%)
  • Box 73: 151 of 151 (100%)
  • Box 79: 198 of 199 (99%)
  • Box 95: 120 of 147 (81%)
  • Box 96: 526 of 539 (97%)
  • Box 97: 52 of 296 (17%)
  • Box 98: 212 of 499 (42%)
  • Box 100: 146 of 422 (33%)
  • Box107:  93 of 538 (17%)
  • Box 115: 275 of 307 (89%)
  • Box 116: 365 of 864 (42%)
  • Box 139: 38 of 38 (100%)
  • Overall: 59% of the 8,925 manuscripts currently uploaded to the website have been transcribed thus far.

Volunteers have again made a number of interesting finds among the material. Joy Lloyd has transcribed more of the panopticon manuscripts from Box 107: ‘The Sotimion, or Establishment for the preservation of Female delicacy and reputation‘, was situated just down the road from the ‘Nothotrophium, or Asylum for the innocent offspring of clandestine forbidden love’. In the vast panopticon area, Bentham even envisaged a ‘Panopticon-Hill Tavern’, to entertain visitors to both the panopticon penitentiary and the Sotimion. Convicts would maintain the connecting roads and tend to the flower verges, and a ‘fish-pond’  with ‘the water-lily and other beautiful aquatics’ would be another attraction. There would be ‘Fountains of Beer Punch & Wine worked with compressed Air’ for ‘entertainment of the populace’, and Bentham also described how visitors would be admitted to the Sotimion.

In another manuscript transcribed by Joy, it appears that the Sotimion would have had a coffee-room, from which any woman could be black-balled, and the Panopticon complex would have its own burial ground.

Elsewhere, in quite a topical few manuscripts, Peter Hollis transcribed Bentham’s ‘leading principles’ of newspapers. These included ‘Universality, Authenticity, Impartiality, Decency’, and that any newly established daily newspaper should ‘be perfectly independent of all parties, and [be] strictly impartial’, and that ‘all profligacy, personal abuse, and scurrility should be rigorously excluded’. Perhaps Bentham would have made a useful witness for Lord Justice Leveson’s inquiry into press standards…

Lea Stern continues to transcribe nuggets of gold about Bentham’s views on transporting convicts to New South Wales, and Keith Thompson has worked on manuscripts relating to Bentham’s plans for a ‘School of Legislation’.

Thank you, as always, to everyone who has given their time to Transcribe Bentham during the last seven days. It remains greatly appreciated by us all.

 

 

perhaps news to those witnesses who gave evidence to Lord Justice Leveson last year.