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|The Royal Naval Dockyard, Portsmouth
Written by StewartMcI
(3/14/2003 5:53 p.m.)
in consequence of the missive, And the Answer Is, penned by Jack Cerf
] HM Dockyard in Portsmouth, where Mr. Price drags Susan, Fanny and Henry Crawford in Ch. 41 of MP. Henry is less concerned with the activities of the dockyard than with the fact that "A quick-looking girl of Susan's age was the very worst third in the world: totally different from Lady Bertram, all eyes and ears . . . "
Thanks, Jack, and good to know someone is on board with real history.
The Royal Dockyard at Portsmouth was easily the largest and most concentrated industrial site in the World in this period.
The dockyard built ships for the navy, so the actual ship-building stocks and dry docks, backed up by massive timber and carpentry works, foundry and casting works in iron and bronze, copper sheeting, nail and bolt manufacturing, rope works and sail lofts, as well as all the business of actually equipping and supplying ships for and in commission, with tar and oakum, salt beef, biscuit, rum and beer, and last but not least the manufacture, assembly and calibration of long guns and carronades and the storage and provision of powder and shot.
In MP Jane cleverly leaves Mr. Price and his crony to go into the detail of the dockyard activities, and elides as usual to the personal relationships central to her story, but clearly she had taken the tour and was proud to be complimented on the credibility of her Portsmouth scenes, and not just in the High Street.
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