niedziela, 11 marca 2018

Newly discovered documents concerning Daniel Tolkien (1794)

This is probably the house where Daniel G. Tolkien lived in the 1780s and 1790s.
27 Bedford Street, Covent Garden, London
About the first address of Mr. Daniel Gottlieb Tolkien in London – 27 Bedford St, Covent Garden (27 New Street) – read here. About Daniel Tolkien's Act of Naturalization (1794) read here. For The National Archives see here.

HO 42/28/114
Folios 291-293.

Minutes of the House of Lords including the third reading and passage of a Bill for naturalizing Mr Hullman, and the first reading of a Bill for naturalizing Mr Tolkien. Bills for the naturalizing of Mr Benjoin and Mr Heintz were brought from the Commons and read a first time. Enclosed is a statement that a Bill for naturalizing Daniel Tolkien, son of Christian Tolkien, born at Danzig, was presented this day and read a first time.

Date: 1794 Feb 14

Held by: The National Archives, Kew

HO 42/28 - HO 42. Letters and papers
Folio 232.

Certificate signed by the minister, churchwardens, overseers of the poor, and... This record has been digitised as part of the larger record: HO 42/28/97

Description: Folio 232. Certificate signed by the minister, churchwardens, overseers of the poor, and 7 other inhabitants of the parish of St Paul, Covent Garden, Middlesex, that Daniel Tolkien of Bedford Street, intending to apply for an Act of Naturalization, has resided in the parish for a number of years, is believed to be an honest respectable man, a good and loyal subject of this realm, and in every way deserving of naturalization.

Date: 1794 Feb 10

Held by: The National Archives, Kew

How the London Tolkiens' houses looked like?

There is a wonderful website London Street Views where a mysterious author, Mr. Baldwin Hamey using John Tallis' street views produced in 1838-1847 describes lost houses, shops and workshops of the eighteenth and nineteenth century London. John Tallis produced 88 street views in small oblong booklets between 1838 and 1840, with an additional 18 revised and enlarged several years later.

Mr. Hamey sent me these pictures of John Benjamin Tolkien's workshop and house at 145 Saint John Street (about this place today read here; see that the lower part of this house seems to be the same today!) and Daniel Gottlieb Tolkien's furrier shop at 60 Cheapside (about this place you can read here):

Here John Benjamin Tolkien, the Professor's grandfather was born
About today's view of this part of London read here
60 Cheapside with Daniel Gottlieb Tolkien's
Skinner and Furrier shop and his house

About Daniel Tolkien's address at 60 Cheapside I have written in 2017:

Michael Flowers from the Tolkien Society has provided me today with this interesting entry from the Evening Mail from 15 November 1820:
We never saw this wealthy neighbourhood more generally or more splendidly lighted up. The inhabitants seemed emulously to vie with each other in giving the best and most brilliant effect to the illumination. Paynter and Co. displayed a transparency of the Queen, drawn by four white coursers, in a triumphal car. In her hand she bore a scroll, with the words: "God defend my rights." The front of Saddlers'-hall presented the letters "C.R." beneath a triumphal arch in brilliant yellow lamps. The house of Mr. Tolkien was ornamented with a transparency representing the Thistle, the national emblem of Scotland; and, on a tablet near it was the inscription– "Scotia, the land of Wallace, Bruce, and Knox" – "Nemo me impune lacessit."
All this was on the occasion of the coronation of Caroline (Caroline of Brunswick), Queen of the United Kingdom as the wife of King George IV (she reigned from 29 January 1820 until her death in 1821). Michael Flowers described the events at Cheapside as "the sycophantic preparations". This is of course something many individuals and businesses did at the time.

"Mr Tolkien" was probably Charles Tolkien (born 1789), son of Daniel Tolkien (born 1746 in Gdańsk). His house was probably 60 Cheapside where Master Daniel Tolkien had his "Skinner and Furrier" shop.

I have also gathered these London addresses of J. R. R. Tolkien's male ancestors:

John Benjamin Tolkien (1752–1819)
his churches: German Lutheran Chapel, Savoy, London; Spa Fields Chapel, London
  • 1777 – area of St James's, Clerkenwell
  • 1779 – area of St Andrew's Holborn
  • 1793 – 49 St John Street, Clerkenwell (William Gravell and John Benjamin Tolkien, Clock and Watchmakers
  • 1799 – White Lion, Clerkenwell (Watchmaker)
  • 1807 – 145 St John Street, Clerkenwell (Dancer and Tolkien, Toolmakers)
  • 1809 – 111 Guildford Street (Dealer in China and Glass)
  • 1814 – 21 Skinner Street, Snow Hill (China and Glass Man, with son)
George Tolkien (1784–1840)
baptism: German Lutheran Chapel, Savoy
marriage: St Bartholomew the Great, Holborn
death: St Pancras district
  • 1808–1810 – 145 St John Street, Clerkenwell (Ironmonger, Toolmaker) 
  • 1814 – 21 Skinner Street, Snow Hill (China and Glass Man, with father)
  • 1830 – 3 Bidborough Street, Burton Crescent (Gent)
John Benjamin Tolkien (1807–1896)
  • born 1807 – 145 St John Street, Clerkenwell

sobota, 10 marca 2018

The Tolkiens' House found!
145 St. John Street, London

From a London address book from 1808
Analysis of the maps and help of the British History Online (BHO) website – and here it is! I have found the exact place where John Benjamin Tolkien (1752–1819) and his son George Tolkien (1784–1840) lived and where J.R.R. Tolkien's grandfather, John Benjamin Tolkien was born. I mean 145 Saint John Street, Clerkenwell, London. The house was demolished and new one was built on its place. But first let us see a map of London from 1821 and let us compare our information with the BHO:

1821 plan of the parish of St. Sepulchre by B.H. Gardner;
see 49 and 145 St John Street
As we can see on the right of the building at 145 Saint John Street there is a passage to Mitre Court. If so this house must have lied on the same place as today's 78 Saint John Street. The BHO describes it as follows:
No. 78 was erected in 1891–2 by Alfred Allard, builder, of Pentonville, for William George Bodecker or Boedecker, presumably as a speculation. Bodecker, who briefly appears in the Post Office Directory as a 'builder' with an office in Queen Victoria Street, had acquired the ground as a cleared site. (fn. 27) The architect responsible for the design is not known. The new building was evidently used at one time by the printers Perry Gardner & Co., whose letterhead in the late 1890s carried an engraving showing both No. 78 and—rebuilt to match—No. 80, as 'warehouse and stock rooms'. (No. 80 was not in fact rebuilt.) (fn. 28) Palmer & Co., tyre manufacturers, took up occupation about 1903. (fn. 29) The façade, with a Gothic-style opening spanning three floors, is faced in red wire-cut brick. The ground-floor incorporates the entrance to Mitre Court (Ill. 306).
Ill. 306. On this place there was the Tolkien family house!

What is most interesting, to the left of this Gothic-style house there is a block of houses from the Tolkiens' times! The BHO describes them as follows:
The five houses at Nos 80–88 make up the most substantial Georgian remnant of lower St John Street (Ill. 307). Not all can be dated with much accuracy.

No. 80, though described as 'new erected' in a deed of 1786, seems to be a rebuilding carried out in the early 1770s of a house bought in 1753 by John Watson, distiller. The long plot provided space for stills and stores behind the house. After Watson's death in 1763, his widow Alice and son John carried on the business here in partnership, and about 1772 Mrs Watson appears to have taken up residence in the house adjoining (on the site of No. 78). (fn. 30) Both houses were probably rebuilt at this time as a pair: Tallis, in the late 1830s, shows the next-door house to have been similarly proportioned, though by that date embellished with pilasters and perhaps stuccoed (Ill. 257).
A fragment of blue-and-white trellis-patterned flock wallpaper, dating from the second half of the eighteenth century, was recovered from the first floor in 1992. (fn. 31)
Nos 82 and 84. These two houses are closely matched in style and probably erected at or about the same time. No. 82 was certainly built in the mid-1750s, replacing half a dozen small buildings comprising 'Marriott's tenements' or Rising Sun Alley. (fn. 32) From about 1768 the house, with a rear workshop and warehouse, was occupied by Edward Jones and Samuel Ware, leather merchants. Ware and his son Richard Cumberlege Ware remained in business here for many years, taking over the present No. 84 and enlarging the workshops and warehousing in Hat & Mitre Court.
The two houses were still occupied by leather-workers in the 1950s. R. C. Ware was the father of the architect Samuel Ware, who trained under James Carr of Clerkenwell.
Though documentary evidence is lacking, it is likely that No. 84 (on the site of an inn called the Goat and Harp) was also rebuilt (or at least modernized and refronted) in the 1750s. Both houses retain wooden chimneypieces, with lugged surrounds and ornamented with fret patterns, and other internal details characteristic of the period (Ill. 309). Externally, the smaller house, No. 84, is distinguished by brickwork laid almost entirely in header bond, in contrast to the conventional Flemish bond of No. 82.

No. 86.
Surviving internal features suggest a 1720s or 30s date, but there is no documentary evidence to support this, and the house has probably been refronted.

No. 88
(formerly 88 and 88a) is an asymmetrical pair of houses, probably built about 1837 when after a rapid succession of tenants, including at least one absconder, both houses (then numbered 150 and 151) were taken by Coats & Brockmer, linen-drapers and silk mercers, John Coats staying for several years. (fn. 33) In 1878 a Home for Working Girls was established here, with 37 beds for girls 'anxious for the comfort and cleanliness of the home'; this had closed by 1886 and the houses reverted to commercial occupancy. (fn. 34) In the early 1900s rear warehousing was erected on the site of old cottages in Hat and Mitre Court for the latest tenants, Gedge & Co., polishers and lacquerers, who were based here until the 1960s. No. 88 was refurbished in 1998 as a bar-restaurant, with a singlestorey glazed rear extension (by Karen Byford of Design Solution, architects), which overlooks the Tudor outer wall of the Charterhouse. (fn. 35)
307. Nos 80–92 St John Street in 2004
So here it is! The puzzle is resolved and we can be sure that the Tolkiens lived at today's 78 St. John Street (old numeration 145 St. John St)!

Tolkiens' Saint John Street, London (18th–19th c.)

What important we could see at St. John Street in the Tolkiens' times? According to Lockie's Topography of London (see here):

Golden Lion Inn, behind 111 St. John St, on the east side
Gun Court, at 161 St. John St
Hat and Mitre Court, at 150 St. John St
Jerusalem Court, six doors north of Albemarle St
St John's Lane, at 68 St. John St
Mitre Court, at 143 St. John St
Pardon Court and Parton Passage, a few yards on the right of 163 St. John St
Red Lion Court, at 160 St. John St
Rose and Crown Yard, at 126 St. John St
Sander's Court, at the north end of St. John St

Few photos from my visit to Saint John Street, London (7 March, 2018):

My plan was to visit St. John Street in Clerkenwell, London and to find the house No. 145
Houses from the 18th c. were two-storey buildings

St John Street seemed very nice to my eyes

Maybe this house remembers the times of the Tolkiens?

After I bought Horwood's maps of London (1813) I realized that today's numeration
is different from that of the Tolkiens' times

My two important boughts

Daniel Gottlieb Tolkien's Amsterdam (1766–1770)

Old Lutheran Church in Amsterdam by the Singel Chanel.
It might have been the German chuch where Lutheran Tolkien attended

From The Methodist Magazine for the year 1813, p. 949–950:
"[Daniel G. Tolkien, 1746–1813] coming [from Danzig/Gdańsk] to Amsterdam, at the age of twenty, he was providentially placed in a religious family, in which, by the instrumentality of social prayer and religious conversation, he was awakened to a sense of his guilt and danger. So painful were his convictions for sin, and so strongly was he tempted to despair of mercy, that he was ready to wish he had never been born. In this state of despondency he remained, until he opened his mind to a religous friend, whose conversations and prayers the Lord blessed to his profit. Coming to London in 1770, he attended on the ministry of Mr. Burgman, then minister of the Lutheran church in Savoy (...)"

Furrier Johannen's house is very close (300 m)
to the Old Lutheran Church and Begijnhof
with its English Church
My theory is that Daniel Gottlieb Tolkien in the years 1766-1770 lived at Kalverstraat 100, Amsterdam (Johan Godliep Johannen's house, a furrier; another furrier of that time was George Benjamin Kreitzig from St.-Luciensteeg 5) and he had only 300 m to the Old Lutheran Church by the Singel Channel. Kalverstraat is "Calf Street", after the cattle market that was held here from 1486 until 1629. Daniel could meet the religious friends in the English Reformed Church at Begijnhof, about 150 m from the Johannen's furrier workshop. He left Holland for London in 1770 and immediately joined the Pietist London Lutherans and then John Wesley.

I was to Amsterdam on the very frosty day of March 1, 2018. The chanels were to my wonder completely frozen. The Beast from the East – as the English say. I could walk to Kalverstraat which is the main street in the center of Amsterdam. I also visited the famous Begijnhof, the centre of religious piety and the place where Daniel could meet English Proto-Methodists in its English Reformed Church. I also visited the Amsterdam Museum where I saw many traces of the eighteenth century life. I was also to the famous Rijksmuseum. My most favourite Dutch painter is of course Vermeer. Below I present few photographs from my Amsterdam walk:

Amsterdam furriers in the 18th c. (see here)

Ice on the Amsterdam chanels
100 Kalverstraat, Amsterdam. Daniel Tolkien lived here?
English Reformed Church in Begijnhof
Jesus from Begijnhof
About the English church
Begijnhof, the Christian centre of Amsterdam
Amsterdam has some similarities to Gdańsk.
Or Gdańsk to Amsterdam
Tolkien's Amsterdam could look like Vermeer's paintings
(from Rijksmuseum)

Tolkiens' houses in London found (?)

St John Street today and the area where number 145 was located.
Some houses may come from the Regency times. We should check it!

Thanks to my last stay in London (March 2018) I could visit The Museum of London and I went to see Saint John Street. Thanks to the Museum I could buy the Horwood's Plan of London from 1813. Thanks to my walk along Saint John Street I could see places connected with the early Tolkiens in the capital of the UK, connected with J.R.R. Tolkien's ancestors. Thanks to Horwood's Plan of London I realized that today's numbers of Saint John Street differ from the numbers from the beginning of the nineteenth century.

From early documents and address books we know that John Benjamin Tolkien (b. 1752 in Gdańsk/Danzig, d. 1819 in London) lived in an ancient parish Clerkenwell (see map below). His adresses were: White Lion Street (1799) and 145 Saint John Street (1808). We also know that his business "Gravel & Tolkien" (clock- and watchmakers) was at 49 Saint John Street.

A plan of Clerkenwell in London by James Tyrer, 1805
Clerkenwell has historically been associated with radicalism, from the Lollards in the 16th century, the Chartists in the 19th century and communists in the early 20th century. John Benjamin Tolkien ("The Older") belonged to the radical Christian movement called Countess of Huntingdon Connection (see here). There was also a Freemasonic temple there (and I suppose that the Tolkiens were not only Christian non-conformists, but also the Freemasons).

Looking at Horwood's map I realized that today's numeration is different from that of the 1800s. And new hope emerged that the house where J. R. R. Tolkien's grandfather was born still existed. I have found these two localizations (see also the lower map with the non-comformist Spa Fields Chapel where the Tolkiens attended the services and St James Anglican church where they had to baptize children and marry their wives):

Two addresses of John Benjamin Tolkien (1752 Gdańsk – 1819 London)
At 145 Saint John Street his grandson, John Benjamin Tolkien (1807–1896) was born 
Places important to J. B. Tolkien: (1) Spa Fields Chapel, (2) St James Church,
(3) 49 St John Street, (4) 145 St John Street
I wonder which numbers from Horwood's map belonged to which existing house – if one of them (for instance the one on the right signed yellow) was 145 Saint John Street? Maybe you can help me? Maybe you know a book or a website with old and new numeration? It would be great to find the house where three generations of J. R. R. Tolkien's ancestors lived in London. Please, send me your comments and guesses.

For whole Horwood's map see here.

czwartek, 22 lutego 2018

Language of the mediaeval Tolkiens

One of the earliest texts of the earliest Tolkiens! This is Middle High German from Prussia in the 16th century. And the author of this letter was bishop Fabian von Lossainen, a great-great-grandson of Matthias von Markelingerode, a tolk ('negotiator, translator') of the Theutonic Order in Prussia. In spite this line of the Tolks/Tolkiens did not use the family name Tolkyn/Tolkien ('a descendant of Tolk'), we can call Fabian and early Tolkien... Linguistics, linguistics everywhere in the Tolkien Ancestry! 

In the 1990s an American artist and linguist, Patrick Wynne has created this splendid artwork:

»Sihe halpbruder, diss ist scherpffer dann dein zung«. This artwork is entitled: 'Woodcut from a 15th century German edition of "The Silmarillion": Das Silmarillion. Die geschicht von den elbischen staynen silmarilli genant, printed by Peter Wagner, Nuremberg, 1493.' The artwork illustrates the tale from The Silmarillion on pp. 69-70.

Copernicus, a friend of an early Tolkien!

Niklas Koppernigk or Nicolaus Copernicus (1473–1543)

Fabian von Lossainen
(ca. 1470–1523)
J. R. R. Tolkien's ancestors were most probably the noble Tolks vel Tolkiens from the goods in Tolko (German Tolks) and Tołkiny (German Tolksdorf) in Prussia (today in the Masuria region in Poland). One of these early Tolkiens was a famous bishop of Warmia (German Ermland), Fabian von Lossainen (Polish Fabian Luzjański). He was born ca. 1470 being a son of Martin von Lossainen, commandant of the castle and city of Reszel (Warmia/Ermland) and Elżbieta Kościelecka from the Polish nobility. As a child he was taken hostage by the Teutonic Knights in revenge for his father's defense of Reszel. His last name is also listed as von Lossainen, von Lusian, de Lusian, de Lossainen, from Łęźany, and Tetinger de Lossainensis (see the Tolk/Tolkien family tree below).

Fabian "Tolkien" first studied probably in Koenigsberg (Polish Królewiec), Prussia. Later  he studied in Cologne (from 1486), at the University of Bologna (from 1490, doctorate in canon law in 1500) and in Ferrara (in 1491). He was a canon of the cathedral chapter of Warmia/Ermland (1490); in the chapter he was a colleague of Niklas Koppernigk (Nicolaus Copernicus or Mikołaj Kopernik), famous astronomer (with whom he studied in Bologna). Luzjański was also a legal counselor of Bishop Łukasz Watzenrode of Ermland. He was elected bishop of Ermland by its cathedral chapter on 5 April 1512. Shortly after his election, he was ordained a priest. This most famous early Tolkien (or descendant of Matthias Tolk von Markelingerode) died on 30 January 1523 in Lidzbark Warmiński. Buried in the cathedral in Frombork.
I have found a letter from bishop Fabian "Tolkien" to Nicolaus Copernicus and his colleague Heinrich Snellenberg (whole collection of Copernicus' letters can be found here). Maybe one of my readers wants to help me to translate this letter from Latin (or German) into English?