A Portion of the Journal Kept by Thomas Raikes, Esq., from 1831–1847
Diarist Thomas Raikes (1777-1848) was an Old Etonian whose social world included some of the most influential people of his day. Raikes was no politician - he had an established reputation as a 'dandy' - and he spent much of his time in gentlemen's clubs in London, especially the Carlton and White's. He was ostensibly employed by his father, a merchant and later governor of the Bank of England, and was married with four children. His reputation as a man about town was confirmed by the posthumous publication of these diary extracts, in four volumes from 1856 to 1857; they focus on his time abroad, mostly in Paris. Volume 1 covers the period from January 1832 to autumn 1834, a time of dramatic events in Britain and elsewhere, including the adoption of the Reform Act, uncertainty in Europe over Belgium and the abolition of slavery in the West Indies.