Since it’s the second of "my" days, I decided to share a response from a question I’d posed in an earlier blog. All the WordWenches blogs remain available on-line, and they can be accessed either in order, or by individual Wench (just click on a name at the end of an entry, and you’ll get them all.) Readers also continue to post replies, sometimes days or even months after the blog first appeared.
Last fall, I wrote a blog called "Whither Bagnigge?" I’d recently written a scene (included in the blog) for The King’s Favorite, which was set in a rural town called Bagnigge Wells, located on a branch of the Thames. As is sadly often the case, the rural resort of 1670 where Charles II went swimming with Nell Gwyn was soon after absorbed by London’s sprawling growth, with even the river covered over and forgotten. I’d found plenty of references to the place in the past, but it was so long gone that it no longer appeared on any modern (or even 19th century) maps. I asked readers two questions: if they knew exactly where Bagnigge Wells might have been, and also, exactly how it would have been pronounced.
And now, some months later, I’ve heard from an English gentleman named Robert Mitchell who answered both questions, plus added a family photograph as well. His reply: "If you search for "gwynne place" on wikimedia commons [here’s the link] you will find a photograph that I have posted that might interest you. Bagnigge is pronounced "Bagg-nidge". The girl on the steps is probably my mum, though we’ll never know for sure." Mr. Mitchell’s great-grandfather was the landlord of the Bagnigge Wells public house, from whose window the photograph was taken in the early 1920s.
Thank you so much for sharing, Mr. Mitchell! And ain’t the great wide world of the internet grand? *G*