This section is from the book "The Fruit Manual: Containing The Descriptions And Synonyms Of The Fruits And Fruit Trees Of Great Britain", by Robert Hogg. Also available from Amazon: The Fruit Manual.
There is, perhaps, no pear about which there have been so many surmises and which has excited so much curiosity as the Beurré Spence, and, notwithstanding all the efforts that have been made to ascertain what this variety is, nothing definite has yet been obtained respecting its identity. Many varieties are in cultivation under this name, of which B. Capiaumont, B. Diel, and B. de Mons are the most general. The name of Beurré Spence originated with Dr. Van Mons, who describes it thus : - M Fruit, shape and size of the Brown Beurré. Skin, green, handsomely streaked and marked with reddish brown and reddish purple. Flesh, tender, juicy, sugary, and perfumed. It ripens about the last of September."
Fruit, medium sized, two inches and three-quarters wide, and two inches and a half high; turbinate, handsome, even in its outline. Skin, smooth, of a fine bright grass-green colour on the shaded side, and dull red on the side next the sun, marked with traces of russet. Eye, open, with short, erect, rigid segments, set in a wide, shallow basin. Stalk, three-quarters of an inch long, set in a small round cavity. Flesh, white, with a greenish tinge, very melting, buttery, and juicy, rich, sugary, and vinous, with a fine aroma.
A first-rate dessert pear; ripe during January and February. The tree is an abundant bearer, succeeds admirably on the quince, and forms a handsome pyramid.
It was raised at Louvain by M. Sterckmans, and was first brought into notice by Dr. Van Mons.
Fruit, above medium size, three inches wide and a little more high; obovate or turbinate, somewhat uneven and bossed on its surface. Skin, thin, considerably covered with patches of cinnamon-coloured russet; on the shaded side the ground colour is greenish yellow, which becomes lemon-yellow at maturity, and covered with small patches and veins of russet. Eye, very small and closed, with stiff, incurved, tooth-like segments, set in a deep, round, and uneven basin. Stalk, over an inch long, fleshy at the base; and united to the fruit by fleshy folds. Flesh, yellowish white, finegrained, buttery, and melting, very juicy, brisk, and sweet, with a delicate and agreeable perfume.
This is one of the finest pears in cultivation. It ripens in September and October, according to the locality; and further north my friend, the Rev. W. Kingsley, of South Kilvington, near Thirsk, and my brother at Hope Park, Coldstream, have it in perfection at Christmas. Mr. R. D. Blackmore says, "It is one of the best, most beautiful, and fertile of all pears."
It was raised at Angers by M. Goubault in 1837, and it first bore fruit in 1844.
This a large, coarse pear, of a long obovate shape, five to six inches long, and four or five broad. The flesh is somewhat tender and juicy, but without any aroma, and very soon becomes mealy.
Ripe in November and December: not worth growing.