By Kris Grint, on 11 April 2014
Welcome to the progress update for the period 5 April to 11 April 2014. It’s a real pleasure to report that the numbers in this week’s report feature some of the highest stats ever recorded for Transcribe Bentham. Overall, a colossal 35,971 words of Bentham text were transcribed, along with a further 9,685 words of TEI XML.
7,645 manuscripts have now been transcribed or partially-transcribed, which is an increase of 180 on this time last week. 7,309 of these transcripts have now been locked, up a remarkable 186 on the last progress update. We would like to congratulate all our volunteers who have not just surpassed, but completely obliterated, the record for the number of transcripts produced in one week. 2014’s rate of transcription shows no sign of slowing down, and is now at an average of 68 transcripts per week.
The more detailed state of progress is as follows:
|Box||No. of manuscripts worked on||No. of manuscripts in box||Completion|
|Add MSS 537||109||744||14%|
|Add MSS 538||97||858||11%|
|Add MSS 539||26||948||2%|
The British Library’s Bentham papers, which contain thousands of letters between various members of the Bentham family, continue to be of great interest to our transcribers. Not only is Jeremiah, Jeremy’s father, continuing to write love-letters to his wife Alicia, but he even records a touching scene involving little Jeremy (or ‘Jerry’ as he was then called):
Your Sweet obliging Answer gave me a pleasure far beyond any
I have or cod have enjoyed since your Absence — and your little Jerry —
Boy I asure you seem’d to take a part in it with his Papa upon my telling him it was a Letter from his dear Mama — he cryed Kish,
Kish — and Kiss’d it several times and when I ask’d him what it was — he cryed Pape (for Paper) Mama
Unfortunately tragedy would soon strike the Bentham family, and in 1759 Alicia Bentham died. George Darling wrote to Jeremiah expressing his commiserations:
I was extremely surpris’d… & greatly affected,
at hearing of that Dear, Sweet Innocent
leaving this world & going to a better — I do assume You, Dear Sir, that I most heartily
sympathise with you in your truly great loss,
Many thanks to Diane Jonker for transcribing these letters, which have been the cause of one or two tears here at the Bentham Project.
In 1760, Jeremy went up to Oxford University at the tender age of twelve. He was reputedly the smallest boy at the University, and according to John Lind, writing to Jeremiah:
He has stood the
Stare of the whole University as his Youth
& the littleness of his Size naturally attract
the eyes of every one.
It’s been a tough old week for Jeremy! Our thanks to Iris van der Zwaag for transcribing that one.
Thank you, as always, to everyone who has contributed to Transcribe Bentham during the last seven days. The consistent progress made by our volunteers in transcribing the collections continues to amaze and inspire all of us here at UCL.