Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-99c86f546-45s75 Total loading time: 0.248 Render date: 2021-11-29T00:53:19.312Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "metricsAbstractViews": false, "figures": true, "newCiteModal": false, "newCitedByModal": true, "newEcommerce": true, "newUsageEvents": true }

3 - Profession and Occlusion: Hannah More's ‘Vital Christianity’

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  15 October 2019

Get access

Summary

IN June 1791, a notice appeared in The Gentleman's Magazine as postscript to a contribution by the Anglican clergyman and antiquarian John Elderton:

That great friend to literature, Mrs. Montague, of Portman-square, has lately presented to Miss Hannah More an urn, to the memory of Mr. Locke, to be erected at Wrington, in this county, the place of his nativity. The inscription is very plain, and runs thus:

To JOHN LOCKE,

born in this village,

this memorial is erected

by Mrs. MONTAGU,

and presented to

HANNAH MORE

While it was far from unusual for Montagu's acts of patronage to attract such publicity, this gift and the correspondence surrounding it are particularly revealing. The report was published just a few days after the urn's initial installation in the garden at Cowslip Green, More's home at Wrington, before Montagu had sent payment to the sculptor commissioned for the work. In a subsequent letter, Montagu lightly chides More for allowing news of the gift to spread prematurely: ‘I fear’, she writes, ‘you have made me incur the blame of the artificer, who must think me forgetful of the debts I owe, and the honour and pleasure I receive.’ As Montagu's choice of words suggests, the transaction combined elements of commodity exchange and gift exchange; Montagu's articulation of the ‘honour and pleasure’ she receives in return for her expense highlights the commerciality of her patronage, as well as its affective aspects. The urn's meaning is thus partially determined by its role in solidifying socio-economic ties, but its gifting was also a cultural and political statement. By giving this object, Montagu asserts her authority as a participant in the conservative appropriation of Enlightenment philosophy More was increasingly looking to effect. I argue in this chapter that the project of reforming Locke was central to More's written, embodied and material practices from the early 1790s onwards. The urn marks the start of the struggle of (and increasingly between) women seeking to wrest possession of the liberal Locke from republican hands.

Type
Chapter
Information
Material Enlightenment
Women Writers and the Science of Mind, 1770–1830
, pp. 113 - 160
Publisher: Boydell & Brewer
Print publication year: 2018

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

Send book to Kindle

To send this book to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Available formats
×

Send book to Dropbox

To send content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

Available formats
×

Send book to Google Drive

To send content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

Available formats
×