Dialect in British Fiction: 1800-1836Funded by The Arts and Humanities Research CouncilSupported by The University of Sheffield
Full record including Speech Extracts
Barham, Richard HarrisBaldwin; or, A Miser's Heir. A Serio-Comic Tale. In Two Volumes. By an Old Bachelor.
Author Details
Surname:Barham
First Names:Richard Harris
Gender:Male
Anonymous:No
Publication Details
Publisher:Printed at the Minerva Press for A.K. Newman and Co. Leadenhall-Street.
Place:London
Date:1820
Novel Details
Genre:Courtship; crime; domestic; mystery; satirical
Setting:Coastal town; rectory; country house; prison
Period:Contemporary
Plot
An old local hermit dies suddenly in a local inn, where his body remains until a formal inquest. The old bachelor is reputed to have a fortune hidden, and has died intestate. His son Charles Baldwin, is his only heir, and he becomes the ward of the miser's landlord and friend. Baldwin falls in love with the daughter of the house, but she - unexpectedly - elopes with the local vicar, Trevanion, leaving Charles heartbroken. Following a confrontation between Charles and Trevanion, in which Charles is injured, there is a good deal of ill-feeling. Trevanion is murdered while visiting his father-in-law, and Charles is arrested and, with much circumstantial evidence against him, found guilty and sentenced to death. A last-minute reprieve saves him, when it emerges that Trevanion was murdered by his father-in-law (who then commits suicide).
Overview of the Dialect
Quite a lot of what would seem to be the local dialect, although the setting is never specified other than as Appleton, which is a coastal town. Stephen Whitehead, a ploughman, has non-standard grammar (e.g. 'here be', p.16, and contraction, e.g. 'I ha' p.16). Andrew, another local character, is nonstandard (e.g. 'misgived me' p.33), and Mrs Gruby has a range of features, including v/w transposition, h hyper-correction, and respellings that amount to malapropism (e.g. p.72 and pp.83 - 90. Also p.134). Lady Duddle has similar v/w transposition and non-standard grammar (e.g. p.178; p.184). These representations may be more sociolect than regional.
Displaying 4 characters from this novel    |    Highlight dialect features in each extract    |    Do not highlight dialect features in each extract
Speaker #1:Stephen Whitehead - Ploughman and groom
Individual or Group:Individual
Primary Identity:The ploughman
Gender:Male
Age:Adult - unspecified age
Narrative Voice:3rd person
Role:Minor
Dialect Features:

Social Role
Social Role Description:Ploughman and groom
Social Role Category:Servant
Speaker's Origin
Place of Origin Description:Unspecified, but presumably English
Place of Origin Category:England
Speaker #2:Andrew Robinson - Companion / domestic
Individual or Group:Individual
Primary Identity:Miser's companion
Gender:Male
Age:Adult - middle aged
Narrative Voice:3rd person
Role:Minor
Dialect Features:

Social Role
Social Role Description:Companion / domestic
Social Role Category:Servant
Speaker's Origin
Place of Origin Description:Unspecified, but presumably English
Place of Origin Category:England
Extract #1 dialect features:
Speakers: All , Andrew Robinson
Extract #2 dialect features:
Speakers: All , Andrew Robinson
Speaker #3:Mrs Gruby - Guest at house party (no social role given)
Individual or Group:Individual
Primary Identity:Mrs Gruby
Gender:Female
Age:Adult - unspecified age
Narrative Voice:3rd person
Role:Significant
Dialect Features:

Social Role
Social Role Description:Guest at house party (no social role given)
Social Role Category:Unspecified
Speaker's Origin
Place of Origin Description:Unspecified, but presumably English
Place of Origin Category:England
Extract #1 dialect features:
Extract #2 dialect features:
Extract #3 dialect features:
Speaker #4:Lady Duddle - Socialite; widow of biscuit maker knighted for serving royal household
Individual or Group:Individual
Primary Identity:Widow of biscuit maker
Gender:Female
Age:Adult - middle aged
Narrative Voice:3rd person
Role:Significant
Dialect Features:

Social Role
Social Role Description:Socialite; widow of biscuit maker knighted for serving royal household
Social Role Category:Trade or craft
Speaker's Origin
Place of Origin Description:Unspecified, but presumably English
Place of Origin Category:England
Extract #1 dialect features:
Extract #2 dialect features:
Extract #3 dialect features:
Displaying 4 characters from this novel    |    Highlight dialect features in each extract    |    Do not highlight dialect features in each extract
Version 1.1 (December 2015)Background image reproduced from the Database of Mid Victorian Illustration (DMVI)