Alice Bemis Taylor Collection: Elizabeth Barrett Browning transcription
Letter from Elizabeth Barrett Browning (1806-1861) to Jessie Meriton White (1832-1906)
Transcription by Simonette Berbeglia, December 2009. Berbeglia notes that the likeliest date for the letter is August 28th, 1856. The Brownings were in Ventnor from August 23 to September 6 (not 8, as in the accompanying letter to Ellsworth Mason), and the 28th of August was a Thursday that year.
My dearest Fiamma,
I have your note, and I have been thinking .. & we have both been thinking. Here we are at Ventnor, but it is not fixed yet when exactly we shall be at Cowes― and, when we get there, .. from letters lately arrived .. we shall find out our poor friend so very unwell that we must devote ourselves to him, & perhaps shall be sent away after a day or two. Under these circumstances, we think it would not be worth while for you to come .. unless you have objects independent of us. I write to say so, out of justice & love to you. Dear, let us see you .. flash on us & spend your light on us in London, when we return, that I may say ‘it is not all darkness here.’
I hear that Victor Hugo & all his family have gone over to the spirits, to a fanatical point.
Penini is overjoyed at the sight of the sea, & wears himself out with raptures.
Your ever affectionate