Selections from Anne Cator Steele's Diary: 1758-60

[Friday] 17 February 1758

O that God may hear and answer those earnest prayers for our poor kingdom and our Allies.

[Monday] 26 June 1758

Mr Kent brought that for a proof namely I have no great joy than to know that my children walk in the truth 3 John 4, the same that my father mentioned to my sister and me just as we were going to speak our experience and this caused it to come to my mind thro which I was much affected the glory is due alone to God for it is His mercy that I can look back on my fathers pious example what I mentiond was in the year 1706 and God has preservd me in life in that same walk to this time blessed be His Holy Name.

[Tuesday] 27 November 1759

Mr Wakeford and his wife came he spoke very highly in commendation of Nany Steeles Books of Poetry that came from London last Saturday.

[Thursday] 3 January 1760

I read the last three months of my diary for the past year where I see admire and have cause to praise God for quite dispelling all our fears of a French invasion with which we have so long been threatened.

[Wednesday] 25 June 1760

Nany is very ill and I am thoughtful about her. I want to be in a more spiritual frame, but I can make no progress in the ways and things of God and yet sometimes I can hope I am a child of God.

[Thursday] 26 June 1760

We sheared our sheep the day past, yet I have very little concern with worldly business.

[Friday] 27 June 1760

My weakness and depravity is exceeding great and my whole dependance is on the merits and righteousness of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Text: Anne Cator Steele's diary consists of three extant manuscript volumes: vol. 2 (13 July 1730-36), STE 2/1/1; vol. 5 (1749-52), STE 2/1/2; and vol. 6 (1753-27 June 60), STE 2/1/3. For a more complete accounting of ACS’s diary, including numerous selections, see John Broome, A Bruised Reed: The Life and Times of Anne Steele (Harpenden, Hertfordshire: Gospel Standard Trust Publications, 2007). The entry above for 27 June 1760 was ACS’s final entry in her diary; she died the next day, 28 June 1760, aged 71. See Anne Steele’s poems, ‘To Amira on her Mother’s Illness’ and ‘To Amira on the Sudden Death of Her Mother’, in Nonconformist Women Writers, Volume 2, poems 247 and 253.