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Extra resources for A Henry Fielding Companion

Sample text

Third of the six sons of General Edmund Fielding and his second wife, Anne Rapha, John was born on 16 September 1721 and baptized at St. James’s Church, Piccadilly. Suffering from weakness of vision, he was rendered completely blind in his nineteenth year through the incompetence of the eminent surgeon James Wilkie, a jury awarding damages of £500. HF and “Jack,” as he called him, were extremely close, and after 1750, with the founding of the Universal Register Office, an ingenious business venture that HF devised and John managed, they began cooperating professionally.

He remained in lodgings within the “Rules” of the prison until, eight months after his confinement, he died on 18 June 1741 in his sixty-first year—but not before marrying a fourth time: Elizabeth Sparrye, a spinster in her thirties who is said to have been his servant. She declared that he had died without having made a will and that his effects were not worth more than £5. His debts presumably must have been settled in time, for his widow lived on comfortably for nearly thirty years. Edmund’s carelessness with money ensured that HF received nothing.

FIELDING, George Colonel (d. 1738), HF’s favorite uncle. A lieutenant colonel in the Royal Horse Guards and groom of the Bedchamber to Queen Anne and George I, he was fond of HF and of his brother Edmund’s other children by his first marriage and meant to behave generously toward them by the terms of his will (Life:250–51). George Fielding, who lived at Windsor, may well be the patriotic “old Gentleman in Berkshire” with whom “Will Lovemeal” has dined in HF’s essay “On Eating” (1736). ) FIELDING, Henry’s siblings.

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