Diary of the Plague Year: Day 26 10 April 2020: Rupert Brooke, Henry Edward Verey



I have two volumes of Rupert Brooke’s poems which I bought when I was 17.

In the first volume, Poems, there is an Ex-Libris bookplate in the name of Henry Edward Verey. On the bookplate in volume two are the names of Henry and Lucy Verey. Volume two had obviously been given to Henry by Lucy as there is an inscription dated May 8th 1915.

It is an unusual name so I wondered what I could find online in a quick search.

I found them on the 1911 census. Henry and Lucy were both Londoners, Henry was born in Pimlico and Lucy in Paddington. By 1911 he was 33 had married Lucy (who was then 26). They had been married for three years and were living with their two children at 8 Talbot Square, Hyde Park. His son, Henry Philip Verey, was two and his daughter, Elizabeth Mary Verey, was aged 11 months.

In 1911 Henry Verey was working as a solicitor. The rest of the household comprised five others, all servants!

Suzanna Bowett – parlourmaid (born Cambridge, town) aged 25
Getrude Annie Partridge – cook (born Suffolk, Great Cornard) aged 34
Annie Ashby – housemaid (born Darlington) aged 25
Edith Emily Pardington – nurse (born London, St Pancras) aged 35
Julia Mary Tabner – nursery maid (born Suffolk, Pebmarsh) aged 17

These women all lived in and were all single  – so curious about their lives .

The house itself comprised sixteen rooms NOT including bathrooms, sculleries or landings.

In the 1891 census Henry Verey is listed as living at Bridge House, Twyford, Berkshire, was aged 13 and described as a scholar. The house still stands.

To be continued …


Diary of the Plague Year: Day 26 10 April 2020: Quotidian Poetry Rupert Brooke (1887-1915)

Rupert Brooke



Down the blue night the unending columns press
In noiseless tumult, break and wave and flow,
Now tread the far South, or lift rounds of snow
Up to the white moon’s hidden loveliness.
Some pause in their grave wandering comradeless,
And turn with profound gesture vague and slow,
As who would pray good for the world, but know
Their benediction empty as they bless.

They say that the Dead die not, but remain
Near to the rich heirs of their grief and mirth.
I think they ride the calm mid-heaven, as these,
In wise majestic melancholy train,
And watch the moon, and the still-raging seas,
And men, coming and going on the earth.

THE PACIFIC October 1913

Sidgwick & Jackson, Limited
3 Adam Street, Adelphi, W.C.     1915


Diary of the Plague Year: Day 25 9 April 2020:

This peculiar situation that we are all does make me think about how we communicate. Paradoxically, I have decided to come off Facebook. I dithered about this decision for a while but the moment I clicked off I felt a massive feeling of relief and release. It was beginning to feel more and more cacophanous and a blessed silence seemed to descend. I can’t help feeling that the people I need to communicate with will keep in touch and the others, well …………