Joseph Barker in Whitehaven

I’ve posted before about Joseph Barker, an extraordinary figure who, in the nineteenth century, journeyed from Methodism to Unitarianism to pure unbelief and then back to Methodism again, and who spent time between Newcastle, Blyth, and Gateshead in the early 1830s and early 1840s. My interest in Barker is twofold – firstly because of his incredible (but brief, if must be noted) commitment to Christian anarchism, a commitment that inspired and was inspired by the writings and lectures of William Lloyd Garrison and Henry C. Wright. Secondly and relatedly, because his anarchism and Unitarianism flourished while he was in Newcastle. I’m therefore, from a more local history perspective, interested in what following his life can say about the relations between anarchism, Unitarianism, place, and the peace movement in Newcastle.

And so, I this morning find myself reading a short publication by Barker from around 1846, in which he recounted a trip he took to Ireland. Before he went to Ireland, however, he first went to Whitehaven, where he was due to set sail from. We know from Timothy Larsen’s excellent work on Barker that he was somewhat exuberant, arrogant, and most of all confident – and that these qualities were consistent across his otherwise most inconsistent life and work. Barker’s publication and his account of his brief stay in Whitehaven is yet more evidence of this. Barker recounts how he had planned to visit a Methodist church (presumably to cause mischief, given he was firmly a Unitarian by this point), but was distracted by a preacher on Whitehaven pier. Stopping and listening, Barker realised that the preacher was unacceptably distorting the true (i.e. Barker’s) understanding of Christianity. So, when the preacher finished, Barker asked if he might say a few words in response:

“After stating that I agreed with the preacher as to the necessity of being religious and the like, I proceeded to notice his errors as to the nature of religion and the way of salvation. […] These and other matters I explained at some length, refuting prevailing errors as I passed along, and concluded by exhorting my hearers to embrace this plain and simple religion, and to begin to live to God without delay.”

After this, Barker says, a discussion followed, in which the original preacher was joined by a chap called Burns. Barker notes that the discussion lasted until about eleven o’clock (am or pm he does not say), and although some there agreed with him, “others were violent, and wished to have me thrown down from the pier.” Not only this, Burns was also “violent and very unreasonable” – presumably also wishing for Barker to be thrown headfirst towards the Isle of Man. “It seemed in vain to reason with such a person”, reflects Barker, a sentence which probably summarises how he felt towards most of the people he debated throughout his extraordinary life.

Barker left for Belfast the next day, leaving behind him yet another town rocked by his irresistible personality and debating skill. Although Larsen and others have written about certain aspects of Barker’s life, theology, and pacifism, there is an excellent biography to be surely written here in the future.

Advertisements

One week, eight letters

It’s been one of those weeks. No, not one of those weeks, one of those weeks. I had planned to write some kind of reflection on my viva, which was on Monday 27th November, but in hindsight I’m probably going to need a bit more distance from it before I can write anything remotely approaching meaningful or insightful. Enough to say that it was tough, tougher than I expected, but that I passed, with some small changes to make over the next couple of months. Apparently this means I can now prefix my name with Dr, or alternatively suffix it with the letters P and h and D. Probably not both though – it’s one or the other. Decisions.

As if this wasn’t enough, I had word yesterday that my application (which I’d honestly forgotten all about) to the Higher Education Academy for recognition has been accepted, and that I’m to all intents and purposes now an Associate Fellow of the same. This means I can also suffix my name with the letters A and F and H and E and A.

One week, eight letters. It could have been worse. Now to get the final couple of weeks of term done, and then I’m going to spend a week without any phone signal in a log cabin somewhere in Western Scotland. Can’t bloody wait.

Two weeks to viva

Is there ever a bigger case of imposter syndrome when you’re two weeks before your viva and a) re-reading your thesis, alongside b) re-reading your external examiner’s most recent book?

One is a bit like a late nineteenth century Fabergé Egg, while the other is a bit like the semi-broken plastic toy you get as a reward when you take 10 minutes unwrapping and then eating Kinder’s laughable attempt at a similarly ovate piece of chocolate.

 

Academic feelings

Academic feelings are multiple, contradictory, yet remarkably clear. It’s increasingly clear now, feeling like you aren’t cut out for it. Feeling like you’ve conned everyone who you’ve worked with and worked for, including yourself.

Feeling like your students mock you, laugh at you, look at each other with progressively bewildered glances and increasingly unsuppressable guffaws while you’re trying to teach. Feeling like you’re failing both them and your colleagues, who will be left to pick up the dregs of confusion and puzzlement that you leave sodden and dripping when you conclude an hour’s teaching and leave the room. Feeling like you’re being pitied, or that the quantitative scale has been misunderstood, or that it’s because you say and do just enough to convince them you’re not bad when actually you’re dire – feeling that any reason, up to and including divine intervention, better explains your actually not-too-bad teaching feedback than the most obvious one of them all. Feeling like you’ve spent the whole week preparing and yet still aren’t prepared. Feeling like when you walk into a seminar room or lecture theatre you wouldn’t mind too much if the overhead projector became loose and crashed down onto your head. Feeling like you’ve never taught anyone anything, apart from what not to be – in all senses of the words to be.

Feeling like everything you’ve ever written is a disaster, an illogical and confused glob of disorganised sentences, appearing as Fred Flintstone’s Footmobile would next to a Batmobile when compared to any piece of academic writing you’ve ever read by anyone else. Rereading the same piece of doctoral work that your supervisors declared ready to submit for examination by Professor Writes Amazingly Incisive Books and wondering if they accidentally downloaded and read the wrong file instead of the one you sent them. Remembering one of your publications and thinking about how much rum the journal editors and reviewers must have collectively drank to decide such a malignant and insulting excuse for academic writing was worthy of publication in the first place. Feeling like you’ve snuck through your academic career in a series of increasingly heartpounding sleights of hand and oversights – surely someone should have noticed by now that all you do is sit there all day, thinking about thinking about doing something?

Feeling like you have to leave, but that there isn’t anything else in the world you could possibly do.

All feelings I’ve had – and still have – in the last four years.

But they aren’t true. And neither are they true if you’ve felt them either.

Your students listen to you, respect you, consider you a mixture of friend, coach, and sage. They leave seminars with thoughtfully furrowed brows, dwelling deeply on the very same words that you thought were throwaway and irrelevant. They feel inspired, inquisitive, illuminated, and included. They write nice feedback because it’s often the one chance they get to tell you how much they’ve appreciated your time and advice. They recognise the effort that you put in, even if they don’t know precisely how much effort that has been in your mind. They come to seminars not because they feel it compulsory, but because they want to spend time with their fellow students in an environment where they can learn – and you’re the one who makes that learning possible. You form friendships and relationships that you don’t know you have, and that students are more thankful for than they can possibly tell you.

Your writing is a process – it will never be completed, or finished, or reach a level where it cannot be improved upon anymore. And nor is anyone else’s writing ever finished, not even Professor Writes Amazingly Incisive Books. Your colleagues and supervisors are thorough and diligent, and read the manifestations of your brilliant thinking with lightbulbs popping off after every single sentence, as your words twist and link across their synapses. They read your publications and marvel that something so focused, so expressive, so considered, and so creative could come from the mind of someone they work just down the corridor from. They know that the only rum the journal editor was drinking was a toast to having something so clean published in their pages. They admire you greatly and consider themselves both lucky and privileged to know you, to be able to talk to you about their lives and their work, and have by now lost count of the amount of times you’ve helped them at different turns without you even knowing. They know that your being there is no fluke or fake or phoney – you’re there because you deserve to be there. The one thing they can’t do, maybe, is put into words how much they appreciate you.

Academic feelings deceive you. They try to persuade you of one specific conclusion and propose all kinds of scenarios explaining why the evidence you have in front of you is mistaken, faked, or anecdotal.

But it’s not true. You are cut out for it. You are not a failure or con-artist or imposter. You are a credit to yourself, your colleagues, and wherever you happen to be. And if you weren’t there, so many would shake their heads in lamentation, and feel their lives diminished in more ways than one.

You’re fantastic, and what you do is fantastic. You are where you belong, and you belong where you are.

Picking up the thesis again

Next week is when I plan to open my thesis for the first time since it was handed in. It was around 10.30am on Monday the 4th of September I carted two copies of it over to the King’s Gate building in Newcastle, along with my bloodshot eyes and a digital copy on a CD, enclosed in a paper origami CD case. It took me longer to assemble the CD case from the piece of A4 paper than it did the library to print and bind the thesis copies – a final test, perhaps, before you can submit. Fail the origami challenge and your thesis is rejected, your efforts in vain, and your reputation ruined. This was a perspective shared by the lady behind the service counter who took the copies off me – she was distinctly impressed by the accuracy of my folds, turns, and scores in the paper. Maybe she is the final judgement, and if your origami CD case fails to pass her stringent standards, she clubs you over the head with your own thesis before filing it promptly in the bin. Luckily I didn’t meet such a fate, although The Girlfriend came close to clubbing me over the head herself when I clambered through the front door some 15 hours later, drunk as a skunk, apparently saying something about how I had wanted to buy some bread from Marks and Spencer’s to eat on the bus home but, inexplicably, had found it closed at 11.30pm.

I digress. My point is that since that day I haven’t looked at the thesis once, on the advice of my supervisors, my colleagues, and The long suffering Girlfriend. I did however print and bind myself a copy too, knowing that when it came to viva preparation I would need one to read and stick post-it notes all over. But it’s been nice feeling the thesis fade from the forefront of my brain, as I’ve got on with other bits of stuff and other bits of work. But next week is when I plan to read through it again. The first time I think I’m just going to try and read it quickly, not deeply – a pen in hand, but only to jot down the inevitable typos and errors I come across. The second time, once I’m refreshed, will be the time to go through it more thoughtfully and carefully, assessing the strengths and weaknesses, making more detailed notes, and in general just getting my head back into it. The viva itself is on the 27th of November, another Monday, although hopefully this time The Girlfriend will be with me when I get drunk as a skunk afterwards, meaning she’ll also be a bit wobbly and therefore unable to club me over the head.

This week though, I’ve a few things to finish. Happily, along with a colleague I have finished an abstract for the AAG next year, although unhappily as a member of the lecturing staff he is the only one of us who can actually afford to go and present it. It’s about hydrogen, everyday practices, and decarbonisation – a million billion miles away from the other thing I’ve been working on, which is an exploration of Unitarianism and radical politics in Newcastle in the nineteenth century (see HERE). I’m almost ready to start writing something about that now, which will focus on the presence (or lack of presence, as it turns out) of Unitarians in the peace movement in Newcastle. I originally wanted to focus on four individuals and their ideas: William Turner, James Losh, Joseph Barker, and George Harris. However, the sheer lack of available information on Turner and Harris, both in their letters and personal papers and in records of their sermons, means that the paper will now probably be exclusively on Losh and Barker. This is no bad thing – twice as much detail on both of them, something that I have the material for. It might, maybe, or maybe not, or possibly, be in a state to send to a journal sometime in the winter of 2022.

November, on the other hand, will likely just be viva prep. And a trip to Paris for a conference, of course, in which I shall be trying to present my (98,880 word) thesis in fifteen minutes. I’ve decided, as it’s so close to the viva, I’m going to take my copy of my thesis with me, and if anyone at the conference has anything negative to say I shall simply club them over the head with it. Something, admittedly, that probably won’t go down too well if I do it to my examiners.

A plea for bibliographic assistance (please retweet etc…)

I have a request, my dear universe.

For some time now I’ve been trying to work out the exact publication date of a tract that was published in Newcastle sometime between 1840 and 1845. The tract in question was written by the Revd. Joseph Barker, and was entitled All War Anti-Christian (see the image below – and incidentally not the same as this one here, which was published in 1840 but is not the same as Barker’s).

All War Anti-Christian.jpg

 

There are conflicting messages as to when it was published. Asbury University’s library guide thinks it was ‘c.1843’ (see here, p.24). Peter Brock, in his book Pacifism in Europe to 1914 (p.534) writes that it was “published in Newcastle-upon-Tyne around 1840.” Also, Barker edited and published the works of William Ellery Channing in 6vols in 1844 from his Hood Street base. At it’s end was a list of works published by Barker, including ‘The New Series of Tracts’, the 1st of which was All War Anti-Christian. It was followed by 13 other of his tracts, some of which were also on war and peace (see photo below). This doesn’t tell us anything about when they were first published though…

Barker's new series of tracts.jpg

 

Jstor thinks that one of these other tracts on war and peace by Barker, entitled Other objections to the peace principles answered, was published in 1842. But it doesn’t have any suggestions as to Objections to peace principles answered, which is before Other objections in the photo above. Meanwhile, the usually triumphant Worldcat hasn’t been much help either. All it can say about Objections to peace principles answered is ‘[1840?]’ (see here), and it thinks Other objections might have been 1842 (see here). Finally, it thinks a subsequent one, War and governments, or, Further objections to the peace principles answered, might be from ‘[approximately 1843?] (see here).

Barker, for what it’s worth, was still trying to sell All War Anti-Christian in the 17th [XVII] issue of his periodical The Christian, which was published in 1844. In fact, there are only two indications from Barker as to when it was published. The first is found on p.4 of the tract itself. Writing that “one great cause of war is the love of money”, he then went on to say “The black infernal war with China also, in which the British forces are engaged, is a war for money.” This should mean that he is writing during the First Opium War, which came to an official end on the 29th of August 1842 with the Treaty of Nanking. Thus, it should mean the latest he wrote the tract was, say, the end of the first half of 1842, but it also means he could have written it as far back as 1840.

The second indication is from the tract on the list entitled Non-Resistance, which features two letters exchanged by Barker and Henry Clarke Wright, an American. These letters were both written in late 1842 – Clarke’s first one in November, and then Barker’s reply in December. This means the tract was probably published in early 1843, but certainly no earlier than December 1842, for obvious reasons. Thus, because Non-Resistance is listed as No.3 on Barker’s list of tracts (after All War Anti-Christian and Objections to peace principles answered), we can surely conclude those two were before it. However, and again, this only tells us that All War Anti-Christian was likely published at latest in the first half of 1842, and not if it was published earlier.

I’m at the end of my tether with this now. For reasons that are inescapably boring it’s quite important I ascertain – at minimum – what year this was published. This is therefore a plea for help. If anyone can do one of these three things for me, I’ll Paypal you the entire contents of my piggy bank, or at minimum buy you a book of your choice, or something.

  1. Know, and tell me, when All War Anti-Christian was published.
  2. Check physical copies of All War Anti-Christian for any indication of a publication date. I’ve checked the one held at Newcastle University’s library, but Worldcat tells me the British Library, Glasgow University, and the Bodleian at Oxford University also have copies. This is a long shot, but it’s possible there might be info on the physical copies as to the publication date (a handwritten annotation denoting when that copy was purchased, for example). If you have access to one of those libraries, I’d be enormously grateful for a quick check.
  3. Check another book that might have info on when this was published. This is the mysterious Works, Volume 6 attributed to Barker (see here), and which keeps coming up when I search for the tract online. It looks like a catalogue of Barker’s publications, and it’s publication date is 1840. Given the rubbish dating of Barker’s other works this is probably wrong (or a guess), but it might have All War Anti-Christian and its publication date in.

Any help or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

[EDIT – I have now found an online copy of Works, Volume 6, and what do you know, the dating isn’t correct. It is a list of Barker’s publications compiled what looks like decades later, and whoever has compiled it has written circa 1840 at the top of the page. But, I know some of the publications it speaks of were published as late as 1846. So, it’s wrong. Oh well…]

Unitarianism and Radical Politics in Newcastle, c.1790-1850

The title, hopefully, of an article that may exist soon. It may not, depending on how much time I can spend on it over the next few months, but all things being equal it should. Over the past few months I’ve become interested in Unitarianism in Newcastle, and especially the role that it did (or didn’t) play in the various radical, philanthropic, and reform movements that gestated in the town in the first half of the nineteenth century. Unitarianism is a denomination of Christianity with a complicated heritage – it is defined primarily by its denial of the Holy Trinity, which is a mainstay in other Christian denominations. They reject the belief that God is one being spread across three persons: the Father, the Son (or Jesus), and the Holy Spirit. They believe that Jesus was a human not a manifestation of God – an exceptional, amazing human by all standards – but a human nonetheless. Unitarians are also prominently associated with the ‘Rational Dissent’ of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, and incorporated scientific developments into their theologies to condemn some practices (such as the Trinity) as irrational and with no solid foundation in Scripture. There’s more to them than that, but they emerged in the late eighteenth century as a distinct grouping with a distinct theology, and subsequently established distinct places of worship in the UK – firstly in London in 1774, and then later in other provincial towns (such as Newcastle). In Newcastle, a new meeting house for dissenters was established in 1726, and under the extraordinary Revd. William Turner made the transition from general dissent towards a concrete and definite Unitarian congregation around the turn of the nineteenth century.

My interest in this particular group’s relationship with radical politics comes from their seeming non-involvement in the Newcastle Peace Society, which was formed in 1817 as an Auxiliary to the London Peace Society, and which ceased to be just before the Franco-Prussian War in 1869. From what we know – and the archival record is patchy to say the least – there were no Unitarians among the founder members of the Society: they were all Quakers such as Anthony Clapham and George Richardson. And although I’ve not been into this as thoroughly as I need to yet, it seems they were also very underrepresented in the ranks of the society after it expanded and became more active in the 1830s and 1840s. In their inaugural report to the London Society, which was in 1832, William Turner is listed among the subscribers, and yet there seems to be little evidence that he ever actively took part in the society’s endeavours. The only thing I can find thus far is that he seconded a motion at their 1831 annual meeting, but aside from that there are no tracts, sermons, or mentions of him in the subsequent newspaper reports of the society’s proceedings. Instead, we see references to other denominations: the Congregationalist minister Revd. John Orange, who for a time was secretary of the society; the Revd. Valentine Ward, a Methodist; and a Scotch Presbyterian called Dr. Lockhart whose first name is unknown. As David Saunders writes, “local Nonconformists — especially Quakers, but also Baptists, Primitive Methodists, Congregationalists and Scotch Presbyterians — maintained a local branch of the national Peace Society between October 1817 and April 1869.” But conspicuous by its absence in Saunders’ comment is Unitarians. It begs the question: where were they, and why was Turner seemingly so passive in his involvement in the Society?

This is surprising, and warrants further investigation, for two reasons. Firstly, we know that Unitarians such as Turner were prominent in other radical movements in Newcastle between around 1790 and 1850. Turner, as well as the solicitor James Losh and a handful of others, spurred the anti-slavery meetings in Newcastle in the last decade of the eighteenth century. This work was continued, among others, by the Revd. George Harris, who eventually took over Turner’s ministry in 1845. This is similar to other members of the Newcastle Peace Society: George Richardson, John Finlay, John Fenwick, Valentine Ward, and plenty of other members were prominent in the anti-slavery movement in the 1830s and 1840s; the Richardson family, spurred by Anna and Ellen Richardson, did an abundant amount of good for the cause, as many historians have noted. The causes of anti-slavery and peace were inexorably entwined in Newcastle. It is therefore a surprise that there isn’t more evidence of Unitarian involvement in the peace movement in Newcastle.

Secondly, we also know through the pathbreaking work of Martin Ceadel that Unitarians caused mischief way out of proportion to their numbers in the British peace movement. As he writes,

“the Unitarians, who had been the mainstay of the opposition to the French wars, played a more modest role in the society than their overall numerical decline can explain. Admittedly, they were important in the west country; the Revd Theophilus Browne was treasurer and secretary of the Gloucester auxiliary and so indispensable that it began ‘drooping’ (as John Bevans put it to a local member) when he left the city, and collapsed altogether soon afterwards; and the Revd Lant Carpenter was probably a member of the Bristol auxiliary, like Mary Hughes. But, in Conway’s words, ‘they were certainly not dominant’.”

And yet, those Unitarians who were involved in the peace movement were far from inactive; Ceadel gives a number of examples of prominent Unitarians who interfered in the ‘peace or war’ debate throughout his work. Furthermore, J.E. Cookson, in his study of ‘anti-war liberalism’ in the Napoleonic Wars, shows how the so-called Rational Dissenters, many of whom were Unitarian, were at the forefront of opposing Britain’s and Europe’s more general decent into conflict. Finally, Ceadel has revealed how before the London Peace Society properly established itself it first had to see off a rival organisation, which was the brainchild of one Richard Phillips, a Unitarian. Yet in Newcastle we see plenty mention of the likes of Turner and Losh in the anti-slavery movement during the Napoleonic Wars, but little on whether or not they were involved in peace activism. Furthermore, we see little evidence that Turner or other Unitarians were prominent in the Newcastle society across its lifespan. Other notable Newcastle Unitarians – William Batson, Edward Prowitt, the Doubledays, Thomas Gibson, et al – were not, apparently, involved, although I need to check a couple of others, such as John Bruce and the Hodgson family, properly.

There are therefore questions to be answered about the extent to which Newcastle’s Unitarians were involved in the peace movement in Newcastle, and if they weren’t, a question to be asked as to why. The only hint we have so far is the relationship between the Newcastle Peace Society and the maverick Revd. Joseph Barker in the early 1840s. Barker, an extraordinary individual, moved to Gateshead in 1839 and immediately became an important member of the society: a committee member no less, and a salaried lecturer spreading the principles of peace around the region. We know that the Richardson family, among others, supported him and his family until at least 1842. But in the early 1840s Barker, in one way or another, began to change his views: he not only transitioned slowly to Unitarianism from Methodism, but he also became a disciple of William Lloyd Garrison, and thus began to oppose not only all war and militarism but also the institution of the state itself. In doing so, he became what we would now describe as a Christian anarchist, and a vehement one at that. However, he was to leave the Newcastle society in 1842, and when he moved to Leeds later in the decade, it was the Revd. George Harris who presided over a Unitarian party bidding him farewell, and not the Quakers or other members of the Newcastle society. The reasons for this seem to be because of his increasingly eccentric views on theological matters such as the atonement, and not, interestingly, his anarchism – it seems he published a couple of anti-government tracts before 1842, meaning that the Richardsons must have continued to support him, at least for a time, in full knowledge of his ideas about the state.

Whichever it is, the way the Richardsons removed their support for Barker in light of his increasingly heterodox Unitarianism opens questions as to the relationship between Quakers, Unitarians, and radical politics in Newcastle more generally. Unitarians, as Douglas Stange makes clear in his study of British Unitarians’ involvement in anti-slavery activism, tended to view themselves as marginalised within British Christianity, and constructed a strange but distinct self-identity as what we might now call ‘the underdog’. In Newcastle, however, we don’t know much about this. To put it bluntly: did the Newcastle Peace Society’s core membership of Quakers actively marginalise, or ignore, the efforts of Unitarians towards peace, and did the Unitarians, aware of their status, turn away from the cause towards other avenues of dissent and reform as a result? If Turner was prominent in anti-slavery networks in the 1790s and after, and later joined the Newcastle Peace Society, why is it he was not a founder member? There are all sorts of interesting questions that arise when we consider Unitarianism like this.

What I consequently want to do is reassess the role of Unitarianism and Unitarians in radical politics in Newcastle between 1790 or so, and 1850. I want to re-examine the ways in which they were involved in the peace, anti-slavery, and other reformist movements in Newcastle, and place this within the wider religious and theological context of Newcastle at the time. Simultaneously, I want to ask how and why, not just to what extent: in other words, I want to try and find out why Unitarians were, or weren’t, involved in these movements, and how and why their involvement changed across time. The way I want to do this is by focusing on Turner, Losh, Barker, and Harris (these four at minimum, possibly more if it becomes possible) in what I think of as a structural biographical approach: an approach which uses individual lives as “windows onto the complicated trends, events, [and] crises of their time, providing an entry point for a deeper understanding of a particular historical era” , as Marion Kent puts it in her study of Queen Victoria. The reason for focusing on these four individuals is simply out of necessity: the archival record is patchy on these questions, but all four were prolific speakers and writers, and as such leave behind a diverse range of sermons, pamphlets, speeches, letters, and motions to explore. I will compliment this with a broader investigation into the history of the Unitarian congregation in Newcastle, drawing on the papers stored at the Tyne and Wear Archives, the fabulous British Newspaper Archive, and secondary literatures wherever I can. The nature of archival research is similar to the old dictum ‘one step forwards, two steps back’, in that one particular archive source tends to lead you to at least two more, which both lead you to two more, and so on, in a tree-branch like fashion. I’ve already done a decent scan of the secondary literature and tracked down the majority of the stuff on/by the four individuals I want to focus on, but there’s plenty more work to do.

So, I guess the question now is: can you help? Do you know anything about this, or are able to point me towards some literature or archival sources that might be useful in revealing things about the relationship between Unitarian(i)s(m) and radical politics in Newcastle between c. 1790 and 1850? If so, do get in touch. And if you’ve got anything broader to say – including, I stress, if you think this is all rubbish – do get in touch also. Any information that helps will be rewarded by a batch of homemade cookies, of a flavour and kind of your choice.

[Also, I can’t be bothered to do a bibliography, but if you’d like reference/bibliographic details on anything above do shout, and I’ll be happy to provide].