Dr Neil Stanley Independent Sleep Expert
BACK [Thomas Wright],  The Journeymen Engineer, The Great Unwashed (London, 1868) here 199; At an hour when those who have to turn out early in the morning are already in their first sleep, the streets are still in a state of comparative bustle with the passing to and fro of the audiences discharged from the theatres and other places of amusement.” Despite what Ekirch contends passage makes no mention of “labourers” being “forced” to do anything. Also note that this is another of Ekirch’s partial quotes that he uses to imply something different from what is actually then written. The full passage makes it clear that the “comparative bustle” is due to the the audiences discharged from the theatres and other places of amusement.” Given that we can assume this to be somewhere between 10pm and 11pm and that they are “already in their first sleep” there is no indication that they are adhering “to their ancestor’s agenda by retiring early” See also ‘The World of London: Part IV’, Blackwood’s Edinburgh Magazine (Aug. 1841), 204;  here  The labour of London life is not only carried on by day and all hours of the day, but by night and all hours of the night : — " Nocturno versaotur mann, versantur dinrno. " Let us glance, superficially and cursorily, at the industry of a London twenty-four hours. Towards midnight, and by the time you have attained the luxurious oblivion of your first sleep, your breakfast — nay, your dinner and supper, of the coming day are being prepared; two or three hours before, thousands of your fellow creatures have been snatching hours from rest, to cart and pack the vegetables that will form a portion of your principal meal ; This is a description of night-time work and does not refer to “retiring early” and so is of no relevance to the point that Ekirch is trying to make James Mullin, The Story of a Toiler’s Life, ed. Patrick Maume (Dublin, 2000), 31; He had made a lot of money as a linen bleacher on a large scale and took advantage of the Encumbered Estates Act to buy up the greater part of our town and all the available land around it, on which he employed a large number of labourers. He was the very beau ideal of a slave-driver. Every Blessed morning,summer and winter, he would be up and about at six a.m. to see that his hands had duly arrived and to escort them to the scene of the days labour later on page 31 he writes During the two and a half years I worked for him I never had a single days rest, and had to be in the yard every morning at six a.m. Throughout the winter months this was long before daylight, and as we had neither clock nor watch I would usually get up after the first sleep, between three and four a.m., and sit reading until I heard the horn awaken the mill workers blown through the street at 5 a.m., which would give me an idea of the time to set off for work. This habit of early rising stuck on me many, many years, and it is during such hours that I did the greater part of my reading. All through the years of work I felt too tired at the end of the day to sit up late, so I always made up for early retiring by early rising. It was , indeed, remarked by our townspeople that no one amongst them could rise early enough to find young Mullin’s window without a light in it; the said light being emitted from a tin lamp filled with paraffin oil, and shaped like a teapot with the wick coming up through the spout, on the same principle as terracotta lamps of the most remote antiquity. It is strange that Ekirch does not use this reference more fully given that not only does it mention being a labourer  and starting work at 6a.m. thus supporting the point that he is making at this juncture but it also mentions ‘first sleep’ and ‘early rising’ although preach the reason is that neither phrase is used in a way that supports Ekirch’s description of them. J. Foster Fraser, ‘Life in a Lancashire Cotton Mill’, Windsor Magazine (June 1899), 45 The morning will hardly have got aired when you are awakened out of your second sleep by the noise like the rattle of musketry under you bedroom window. This passage does not refer to “retiring early” or starting work at 6 a.m. and so is of no relevance to the point that Ekirch is trying to make  N. Bishop Harman, ‘London: the Triumph of Medicine. Presidential Address Delivered before the Metropolitan Counties Branch’, British Medical Journal, 1 July 1922, 3; here  We are awakened from our first sleep by the cacophony of motor horns, whilst our last doze is cut short by the scream of half a dozen factory sirens or the roar and earthquake of the five-ton lorry. This passage does not refer to “retiring early” or starting work at 6 a.m. and so is of no relevance to the point that Ekirch is trying to make. BACK
© Dr. Neil Stanley 2013-2018