We know through our research that those Georgians were prolific letter writers so we thought we would take a look at communication before the advent of telephones, the internet, computers and the like, back to a time when the quill pen was all the rage and when all letters were either hand delivered or sent by mail.
Quill pens pre-date the Georgian era by some considerable time, made mainly from goose feathers, although high quality ones were made from peacock or even swan feathers by using discarded flight feathers after the bird has moulted.
In 1764, an Act of Parliament was passed that allowed the Postmaster General to set up a local Penny Post in any city or town, similar to the system that already existed in London. In 1784 a new type of postal rate was introduced linking the distance a letter had to travel more important than ever before. The further it had to travel obviously the more expensive it was to send it, not to mention the cost of paper.
Sending two sheets of paper cost twice as much as a single sheet, so those canny Georgians opted for an impressive way of saving money – they adopted a style of writing to fill the entire page, firstly they wrote the way we today, then they turned the paper and wrote in the remaining spaces, commonly referred to as ‘cross hatching’.
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