On 6 October 2001, BBC Television broadcast According to Beryl. Their hour-long account of the family arrangement enjoyed by Samuel Johnson and the Thrale family of Streatham, seen through the eyes of Beryl Bainbridge, author of the book on the same subject, According to Queeney.
We are returned from London & its Environs where I gained little—& lost—my Dear Flo, ’Tis inconceivable how that poor Animal’s Death has lessened the little stock of harmless Pleasure I enjoy'd—but he is dead, left under my Mother’s favourite Tree at Streatham Park; where I deposited her Spaniel Belle many a long Year ago—He took some Tears with him from his good natur’d Master—& from me these Lines.
All this dismal happened in June 1776. as well as I remember; Mr Thrale was gone with little Mr Evans of St Saviour’s to fish for Trout in the River at Rickmansworth, & we were just come from Bath to Streatham, and were gathering our Folks together I see by some old Verses which I wrote just at that Time to Mr Thrale who went on the Wensday to Herts, & returned on the Fryday—so I sent the Verses to meet him at the Borough house on the Fryday Morng. God knows they are silly enough—but they do not smell of the Lamp at least. I wrote them as fast as I now write this Stuff.