The Diary of Thomas Turner, 1754-1765
Thomas Turner (1729-1793) was a hard-working and ingenious village shopkeeper. He occupied a key position in East Hoathly, Sussex, where he was grocer, mercer, draper, undertaker, schoolmaster, surveyor, tax-gatherer, writer of wills and accounts, distributor of charity, churchwarden, overseer of the poor, and much else besides. In the eleven years of his diary, he rarely left the village for more than the occasional night: he stayed at home and recorded the minutiae of everyday village life in pre-industrial England. This edition contains about a third of the massive whole of the diary, but allows Turner to take his rightful place alongside Pepys, Evelyn, and Woodforde as an indispensable English diarist.