Stillborn Thrale son - August 1779

  • Posted on: 22 September 2009
  • By: David Thrale

In 1779 Hester Thrale wrote in the Family Book…

I think I am again pregnant.

She had a difficult pregnancy, which she prayed was a son. During most of the pregnancy she was confined to the house.

On 10 August 1779, she was a few days away from being full-term, but problems with the clerks had arisen at the brewery. In Thraliana, she wrote1

Mr Thrale wished me to go, nay insisted on it, but seemed somewhat concerned too, as he was well apprized of the Risque I should run. I went however, & after doing the Business I went to do, beg'd him to make haste home, as I was apprehensive bad Consequences might very quickly arise from the Joulting &c. -- he would not be hurried … no Pain, No Entreaties of mine could make him set out one Moment before the appointed hour -- so I lay along in the Coach all the way from London to Streatham in a State not to be described, nor endured; -- but by me: -- & being carried to my Chamber the Instant I got home, miscarried in the utmost Agony before they could get me into Bed, after fainting five Times.

The stillborn child was a full term, perfectly formed, boy. Henry's inaction seemed to have caused, or contributed to the loss of his last chance to have a male heir.

John Perkins who was present at the scene in the brewery, said that Henry seemed to be…



It is likely that the son was buried in St. Leonard's Church, Streatham and has no monument.

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