W.T. Stead Journal Entry (July 8, 1877)

Quoted in J. W. Robertson Scott, The Life and Death of a Newspaper (1952) pp. 106-107

My twenty-eighth birthday passed. I am too heavily pressed by work to live. Life is not healthy when it is consumed by a ceaseless round of exacting toil. Leisure is essential to life and I have no leisure. The hay, the garden, the expectancy of a third child, hope deferred day after day, week after week, Emma needing attention, myself losing sleep, and a useless girl downstairs, exhaust my vitality and leave me nothing at all but a treadmill round. I must change this at any cost. I must have leisure to train my children, to attend to my wife, to study. If I could have two hours a day more! The need of nine hours' sleep cuts my day short. Neither wife nor self good disciplinarians. Cannot dragoon a household into order. We sigh in vain for the ideal servant, intelligent, cultivated, hard-working. My social circle grows slowly. My Sundays are execrable. Worship is more and more of a form. I enjoy Sunday but it is only as a rest. I must stop that. Punctuality, precision, etc., are impossible while domestic routine is chaos. It is a terrible waste of a day waiting hour after hour for papers. The essential untrustworthiness of girls of all kinds to go four miles in less than two hours and even sometimes in three is painfully impressed upon my mind. I have had no holiday and need one.


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Owen Mulpetre, BA (Hons) MPhil