Rev Francis Kilvert - DBH1 The Web Site 2021

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Rev Francis Kilvert

He was a curate at Clyro in Radnorshire and later vicar of Bredwardine on the Wye. His Diary (1870-79), giving a vivid picture of rural life in the Welsh marches, was discovered in 1937 and published in three volumes (1938-40).

Christmas Day 1870

As I lay awake praying in the early morning I thought I heard a sound of distant bells. It was an intense frost. I sat down in my bath upon a sheet of thick ice which broke in the middle into large pieces whilst sharp points and jagged edges stuck all round the sides of the tub like chevaux de frise, not particularly comforting to the naked thighs and loins, for the keen ice cut like broken glass. The ice water stung and scorched like fire. I had to collect the floating pieces of ice and pile them on a chair before I could use the sponge and then I had to thaw the sponge in my hands for it was a mass of ice. The morning was most brilliant. Walked to the Sunday School and the road sparkled with millions of rainbows, the seven colours gleaming in every glittering point of hoar frost. The Church was very cold in spite of two roaring stove fir

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