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ment of a cheerful character. You may melt it into iron that can be
wrought. Ever your affectionate J. RUSKIN.



To Sir JOHN LUBBOCK, Bart., F.R.S.

BRANTWOOD, 14th June, '87.

DEAR SIR JOHN, And will you really come ? It's so wonderful to
think you can forgive me all the ill-tempered things I've said about
insects and evolution and everything nearly that you've been most
interested in and will see the Lake Country first from my terrace
where, however, Darwin has walked also. And it is a terrace a mere
nook of turf above a nest of garden but commanding such a piece
of lake and hill as can only be seen in England.

I shall be here all the year, and whenever you can prevail on Lady
Lubbock to seclude herself from the world (there is not a house
south of us on either side the lake for four miles) and on Miss
Lubbock to take up her quarrel where we broke off irreconcilable
you will find Brantwood gate wide on its furthest hinges to you.

1 [See " The Cathedral Close " at the end of Canto i. :

"And some one in the Study play'd
The Wedding-March of Mendelssohn."]



1887] THE FOUNTAIN AT FULKING 591

You will have to put up with cottage fare and perhaps with a
couple of days 1 rain; I have only a country cook and when it rains
here, it does not know how to stop. For the rest, if you come when
the roses are yet in bloom and the heather in the bud, you will not be
disappointed in Wordsworth's land. Ever affectionately yours,

JOHN RUSKIN.



To HENRY WILLETT

BRANTWOOD, IQth June, '87.

DEAR MR. WILLETT, Sincere thanks for your kind note and the
messages from Dr. Wendell Holmes, but I am too sad and weary just
now to see anything; and I was grieved by your inscription on the
fountain, 1 for it made my name far too conspicuous, nor did I feel
that the slightest honour was owing to me in the matter. And for
photographs and the like regarding myself and my people, I have no
care; all my life has been given to obtain records of glorious work
not of personalities ; and my house is full of drawings and descrip-
tions of things which I fain would set in some order before I die, but
the shadow on the dial seems lengthening fast for me. All that any
who care for me can do, may be after my death. Ever faithfully and
gratefully yours, J. RUSKIN.

To ALBERT FLEMING

BRANTWOOD, 20th June, '87.

DEAREST ALBERT, I send you the first notes for preface and title-
page of Hortiis. Had I even been in my usual health, it would have
passed all my power to describe Susie as you and I both know her,
but at present I am so broken-hearted that no effort needing joy to
support it is maintainable for an instant; besides, I think it well
that you should take the entire editing of this book, and give your
own description of Susie and of your relations to us both saying as
little of me as possible, and getting the letters into mere chronological
order so far as they can be placed by the Fors parallel entries. Mrs.
Firth can help you from very private diaries. You have carte-blanche
to do what you would if I were gone, only without such praise as
you would then allow. You must delete all the notes of admiration of
particular letters, etc. 2

1 [See Vol. XXXIV. p. 719.1

* [That is, pencil notes by Miss Beever and Mr. Fleming.]



592 LETTERS OF RUSKIN VOL. II [1887

/ don't know either how I am or how I ought to be just now
the reaction after the great strain must be borne as thoughtlessly as
possible. There is, under closest examination by Dr. Kendall, neither
heart disease nor any traceable sign of nervous danger. Ever your
lovingest and you must surely know how grateful

JOHN RUSKIN.

To LADY MOUNT-TEMPLE l

BRANTWOOD, 23rd July, '87.

SWEETEST ISOLA, Is there no Isola indeed where we can find refuge
and give it? I have never yet been so hopeless of doing anything
more in this wide-wasting and wasted earth unless we seize and fortify
with love a new Atlantis. Ever your devoted ST. C.



To Mrs. ARTHUR SEVERN

[FOLKESTONE, Aug. 27, '87.]

Fm ever so well, thank God; it was the luckiest chance in the
world you sent me here and there's some blessed rain to-day. . . .
It was quite frightful to see the children out of an excursion train,
who had been used to play in gutters, dabbing in the calm fringe of
sea which was six feet deep within nine of the beach. It was no more
to them than an amusing and fidgety gutter, they never looked at
the ships, or seaward ; the mothers gossiped without looking even
at the children as if it was as safe as a duckpond. . . . This will
interest Arfie. A big steamer has gone down Channel with foam from
her bows, as if there were a big sea on, and yet two of ArfiVs
Rochester Redsails are standing on the sea as if they were pinned to
it. Another of them is moored, to the quay here, and is, I think, the
most puzzling piece of rig and rope I ever saw in any country.



To Mrs. ARTHUR SEVERN

SANDGATE, Zlst Oct., '87.

... I send two extremely pretty passages of life they're not
stories by the Booties' Baby man, 2 whom I like best of any one now

1 [Printed by W. G. Collingwood in his paper " Raskin's ' Isola'" (Good Words,
February 1902, p. 80), and reprinted in his Ruskin Relics, p. 225.]

2 ["John Strange Winter" (Mrs. Stannard) : see the next letter.]



1887] LIGHT READING 593

in the trade. I have read Lord Fauntleroy 1 and liked it but don't
feel as if I should care to read it again, though I've forgotten what
it was about. I've just ordered Garrison Gossip* from Wilson, and
have a dimly interesting imitation of Gaboriau on hand Le Secret
de Berthe? which I picked up in London. Every French bookseller
every seller of French books, I mean whom I tried, had their counters
full of Tartarin de Tarascon all recommending it as the most amus-
ing book that could be Trente Troisieme Mille on the cover, so
I bought one, and it's the worst pennyworth I ever bought in all
my life pictures and text alike the quintessence of Incomprehensible
stupidity. The hero shoots an ass instead of a lion in Algeria, and
the ass's proprietor demands his beast again " a tous les echos de
Mustapha? Arthur has been in Algeria; can he tell me what joke
underlies this?



To JOHN STRANGE WINTER (Mrs. ARTHUR STANNARD)*

[SANDGATE, 1887.]

Of all pretty coincidences that ever happened to me, this of your
writing and sending me your books at the moment when I was writing
to my Joanie that yours were the only books I now cared to read, is
quite the prettiest, and it makes me feel as if things were going to come
right again for me for a while, after having been torturingly wrong
all this year. And the knowledge that I have been helpful to you, as
you tell me, is daintily good for me at a time when I am extremely
displeased with everything I have tried to do; all the same, although
the lesson was a good one, the real goodness was in the pupil, for I
have given it to thousands without its being of the least use to them.
And the essential quality of your work is of course its own. ... I had
not the least thought of your being a woman. I ought to have had,
for really women do everything now that's best, and they know more
about soldiers than soldiers know of themselves. But it had never

1 [Little Lord Fauntleroy, by Mrs. Hodgson Burnett.]

8 Garrison Gossip, gathered in Blankhumpton, by John Strange Winter, 2 vols.,
1887.

3 By F. Du Boisgobey, 2 vols., 1884]

4 From Notable Women at Home, No. 1, November 1890, edited by James R.
Morgan. The writer of an account of " John Strange Winter " there says : " Sensible
of her debt of gratitude to him, she was persuaded to tell him of it by letter after
her success was confirmed, at the same time sending him two of her books, That
Imp and Mignon's Secret. He was ill, and away from home, but Mrs. Arthur Severn
acquainted him with their receipt, on the very day he was sending her the same
two books" (see the preceding letter).]

xxxvii. 2 P



594 LETTERS OF RUSKIN VOL. II [1887

come into my head, and Pm a little sorry that the good soldier I had
fancied is lost to me, for I have many delightful women friends, but no
cavalry officers . . . and I am ever your grateful J. RUSKIN.



To Miss CONSTANCE OLDHAM

5th Nov., '87.

. . . This is really the dearest little coffee-set I've ever had !
and I like it so for being from Thun. It came perfectly no chip
anywhere with the letters this morning an entirely bright, sunny
5th Nov. I had no notion such things were possible. The sea
Jooks as if God had made it for a children's playmate all the world
round.

What I said of music was that both with Mozart and Rossini
it was assumed that every note, however rapid or however emotional,
would be given in perfection by the singer, with the consummate
power of a trained voice, never with effort, hurry, or flaw. He or
she were never permitted, in their discipline (M. and R.'s), to be
hoarse with rage, or shrill with grief, or to give any passage
without perfectly melodious and deliberate utterance of every note
in it. Rapidity that slurs, or even does not to the full enjoy, and
let the audience enjoy, the sweetness of every note, is no skill for
them. First of all, the note every note is to be music, the most
musical and beautiful note the singer can give. That secured, it
may be accented in the delicatest way for expression and the action
of body and expression of feature are to enforce the meaning of the
melody; but for the expression of that, the composer is answerable,
not the executant. And all the roaring, whining, screaming, screech-
ing, and miauling which form the staple of modern dramatic sound,
would have been thought of, by those two masters (a fortiori by the
pure Italian schools that preceded them), as the drama and music of
beasts, not men.

But to deliver a passage of Rossini in its proper time and sweet-
ness, recurrent as it often is through lengths of cadence, required such
training in the singer as no executant now would dream of, much less
submit to. Mozart's is more possible, but requires a fine personality
and I can safely and deliberately say that since Persiani's death, 1 which
I think was before you were born, I have never heard an attempt even
to sing a Mozart passage rightly.

1 [Fanny Persian! (nee Tacchinardi) ; 1812-1867; operatic "star," 1837-1848.]



1888] GOOD INTENTIONS 595

To Miss GRACE ALLEN



MY DEAR GRACIE, Those are lovely lines of Whittier's, 1 but they're
not a whit true, and I wish you would give up reading Yankee verses.
When Frederick lost Kolin and Kunersdorf, 2 he didn't get any worker's
pay; but lost virtually f of his life for ever and had to repair his
ruined Prussia in the fag-end of it. And most people, whether good
or bad, lose, not -f- nor ^, but -f of their lives, in good intentions
pave the upper world with asphalt, and the under one with their own
souls gone as black.

And so, I beg of you, help me in the end of this battle of life
not by quoting poetry, but by wearing sensible bonnets, and in general,
not " protesting too much " ! . . .

I shall be, I hope, within reach of you all this spring, but you are
always to think of me as of a Sand Eel, and not try to dig me out.
Ever affectly. yrs., J. RUSKIN.



[During the early part of 1888 Ruskin remained at Sandgate, paying occa-
sional visits to London : see Vol. XXXV. pp. xxix.-xxx., where a few other letters
will be found. He was unable for much literary work, and was subject to alternate
moods of excitement and depression. In June he went to France with Mr. Arthur
Severn, and afterwards, with Mr. Detmar Blow, to Switzerland and Italy. Letters
written thence are given in Vol. XXXV. pp. xxxi.-xxxiii. The letters here added
stop in November, when Ruskin on his way home was taken suddenly ill.]

To GEORGE ALLEN

SANDGATE, 1st January, 1888.

DEAR ALLEN, I have indeed much to thank you for, in the past
and in many past years, and am very thankful that you are so well
yourself after the anxieties I have caused you in this one. It is a

1 [Miss Allen had sent Ruskin a Christmas card with the following lines from
Whittier's poem, " The Voices " :

" Yet do thy work ; it shall succeed
In thine or in another's day ;
And if denied the victor's meed,
Thou shall not lack the toiler's pay.

Faith shares the future's promise, Love's
Self-offering is a triumph won ;
And each good thought or action moves
The dark world nearer to the Sun."]

2 [For other references to this battle, see Vol. XXXI. r>. 479, Vol. XXXIV.
p. 328 ; for Kolin, see Carlyle's Friedrich, Book xviii. ch. iv.j



596 LETTERS OF RUSKIN VOL. II [isss

very great relief to my mind at present to know that the various
reports about me have not interfered with your business. Would you
please tell me what those were to which you alluded in America? I
have never seen any of them ; but the most entirely foolish . . . thing
I have ever seen written about me is by the Boston man, Stillman, in
the Century for last month. 1

I am quieter and stronger in mind, so far as I can judge, than
for years though much physically troubled since the cold weather
came and I am re-reading the Bible of Amiens, with view to proceed
in what I have already half done, connected with it. Please do not
reprint any of the numbers without my corrections. I am amazed at
the quantity that needs completion in it but is capable of no good
completion.

Those blessed Lectures 2 will, I hope, be finished by Wedderburn as
soon as the New Year bustle is past. Sincere love and thanks to you
all. Ever your faithful and affecte. JOHN RUSKIN.

To Miss KATE GREENAWAY 3

[SANDGATE] 5th Jan. [1888].

I am most thankful for all your letters, though I have no strength
to answer a very little writing or thinking tires me. But I have been
oppressed by the cold, like you.

I am entirely glad you like Donatello; but Donatello would have
liked Kate Greenaway. You would do things far more beautiful if
you would only submit to laws of Shade and measures of form.

But you are hurried on by the crowd of your own new thoughts,
and cannot yet realise any.

To Miss KATE GREENAWAY*

[SANDGATE] 21th Jan., '88.

You cannot conceive how in my present state I envy that is to
say, only, in the strongest way, long for the least vestige of imagina-
tion such as yours, when nothing shows itself to me, all day long,
but the dull room or the wild sea; and I think what it must be to

1 ["John Ruskin/' by W. J. Stillman, in the Century Magazine for January
1888 (issued in the preceding month).]

1 [The new and revised edition of the Oxford Lectures on Art, issued in February
1888; the Preface is dated "10th January": Vol. XX. p. 16.]

3 [Referred to in Kate Greenaway, p. 170.]

4 [No. 105 in Kate Greenaway, pp. 170-171 (see below, p. 658).]



1888] THE GIFT OF IMAGINATION 597

you to have far sight into dreamlands of truth and to be able to see
such scenes of the most exquisite grace and life and quaint vivacity.
Whether you draw them or not, what a blessing to have them there
at your call.

And there I stopped, and have been lying back in my chair the
last quarter of an hour, thinking

If I could only let Katie feel for only a quarter of an hour what
it is to have no imagination no power of calling up lovely things
no guidance of pencil point along the visionary line Oh, how thank-
ful she would be to find her Katie's mind again.

And what lovely work she has spent where no one will ever see
it but her poor Dime 1 on the lightest of her messages. Do you
remember the invitation sent by the girl holding the muffin high on
her toasting fork ? 2 You never did a more careful or perfect profile.
And the clusters of beauty in those festival or farewell ones!

Well, I had joy out of them such as you meant and more than
ever I could tell you, nor do I ever cease to rejoice and wonder at
them but with such sorrow that they are not all in a great lovely
book, for all the world's New Year's and Easter days.

You might do a book of Festas one of these days with such
processions ! 3

To Miss KATIE MACDONALD*

9th Feb., '88.

DEAREST KATIE, I cannot tell you how sweet I think it of you and
Puck and Freda still to call me Papa and to send me those pretty
cards, when I have given you no sign of affection for so long, and left
your two lovely long letters without word of thanks but I was so ill
then that I could not read nor think, and although this year has begun
a little more happily for me, I cannot yet send you any account of
its days that you would care to read, except that I have really added
much to the happiness of a grey cat called "Jim." ... I have really
been rather good-natured to a little dog called "Bets" who is not
pretty and always wants, whatever side of the room door she is on,
to be directly at the other.

1 [A name by which Ruskin often signed himself to Miss Greenaway, explaining
it as H corruption of "Demonic": see the Introduction, Vol. XXXVI. p. civ.]

2 [See above, p. 470.]

3 [By " processions " are meant the long drawings of girls, into which Miss
(Jreeiiaway put some of her most careful work : one of them is referred to above,
p. 474.]

4 [No. 27 in "The Friends of Living Creatures and John Ruskin," in the
Fortnightly Review, October 1907, p. 608.]



598 LETTERS OF RUSKIN VOL. II

I meant to have taken some pains at Brantwood with the education
of a seagull but was discouraged by observing that when I brought
him an oyster for a treat with his lunch, he would not help himself
to it out of the shell as I held it politely to him but would snap at
the whole shell pull it out of my hand, drop it upside down on the
floor, and then look at it in a bewildered and irritable state of mind,
not knowing in the least how to get it right side up again.

I should be very glad now to hear of any pets of the Society that
have been found deserving its care and feel myself I am sorry to
say more fit to be one of its pitied pets than its papa. Ever, dear
Katie, your lovingest J. RUSKIN.

To Miss KATIE MACDONALD!

Wth Feb., '88.

DARLING KATIE, I am so glad my poor little letter was any joy
to you when you were in bed with a cold for sometimes that is very
dismal, though not quite so bad as being out of bed with a cold.
I'm so ashamed always of being seen about the house with a red nose
and heard sneezing fifteen or sixteen times at once. But were you
really "cross," Katie? I can't fancy you ever being cross! Were you
only cross with the cold or with anybody else ? or with the weather ?
or with the bread and butter? I do like everything so nice and
hot when IVe a cold and when I have got to stay in bed, I'm very
cross if the toast isn't buttered all over the crust and then afterwards
I'm very cross with the crumbs. . . .

"Jim" put me to great shame the other day. Usually he comes
at the fish course, and has the tail of a whiting, or the head of a
sole and then doesn't ask for anything else but sits on my knee, or
in the armchair beside me, all the rest of dinner-time. . . . We had
got to the game course, and Jim was sitting on my knee, and I was
explaining how good he was to be content with sitting there, and not
asking for anything, when, just as I had got the words out of my
mouth, Jim put his paw on the table-cloth looked to see what was
on the table then quietly helped himself to the breast of ptarmigan
that was on my plate, and jumped down to make himself comfortable
with it on the rug.

And the same evening Betsy got into my room and made herself
comfortable just in the very middle of my bed. It's all very well
being a friend to Living Creatures, but I think the Living Creatures
might find better ways of being friendly to me.

1 [No. 28 in "The Friends of Living Creatures and John Ruskin," in the
Fortnightly Review, October 1907, p. 608.]



1888] VALENTINE'S DAY .599

The little valentine is very pretty, only I'm not quite sure what
sort of tree it represents and oughtn't Valentines always to have
something about hearts and arrows in them? I've got a pretty letter
from a whole girls' school, written on the 14th, but there's nothing
about hearts and arrows in it and I don't know if I'm to take it
for a Valentine or not. And I don't quite know, either, how many
Valentines one's allowed to have. Dear love to Puck and Freda, and
I'm ever your lovingest PAPA R., F.L.C.

To Miss KATE GREENAWAY 1

[SANDGATE] llth Feb., '88.

It's just as bad here as everywhere else there are no birds but
seagulls and sparrows there is snow everywhere and north-east wind
on the hills but none on the sea, which is as dull as the Regent's
Canal. But I was very glad of the Flower letter yesterday, and the
chicken broth one to-day, only I can't remember that cat whom I
had to teach to like cream. I believe it is an acquired taste, and
that most cats can conceive nothing better than milk. I am puzzled
by Jim's inattention to drops left on the table-cloth; he cleans his
saucer scrupulously, but I've never seen him lap up, or touch up, a spilt
drop. He is an extremely graceful grey striped fat cushion of a cat,
with extremely winning ways of lying on his back on my knee, with
his head anywhere and his paws everywhere. But he hasn't much con-
versation, and our best times are, I believe, when we both fall asleep.



To Mrs. ,. ALLEN

SANDGATE, 19th February, '88.

Yes, if I could send you a long letter, saying I was well, wouldn't
I just ! but now, when I can only send you short lines saying I'm ill,
what is the use ? Not that I'm ill in any grave way that I know of.
But I'm very sad. It's a perfectly grey day, snowing wet snow all
over sea and land all day, and threatening for all night. Fve had
nothing to do since morning, and I don't know what to do till tea.

I'm alone in a room about the size of a railway carriage. I can't
walk about in it (and wouldn't care to, if I could). I've no books that
I care to read (or even would, if I cared to). I'm tired of pictures,

1 [No. 106 in Kate (Jreenaway, p. 171.]

2 [From " Raskin in the 'Eighties," in the Outlook, October 21, 1899 ; reprinted
in Scribner't Magazine, November 1906, p. 571.]



600 LETTERS OF RUSKIN Voi, II [isss

and minerals, and the sky, and the sea. There's three o'clock, and I
wish it was thirty and I could go to bed for the next thirty.

But every morning I get some little love-letter from a Joanie or
a Mousie which makes me think I had better try and keep awake a
little longer.

To Miss KATE GREENAWAY 1

[SANDGATE] Sunday, 19th [Feb., 1888].

This is the dismallest day I've seen at Sandgate, but I'm cheering
it up by trying to fancy the tea at Frognal yesterday, and remember-
ing the teas of old times. But I can't remember that cat! You
know our Tootles at Brantwood rather fills up the place of all cats
in my mind, she has been such a principal figure there for so long.

I fancy " Jim " here will be a principal figure in remembrance of
Sandgate-^-lying on his back wedged between my knees, with his head
hanging down and his paws in the air; but he very rarely does any-
thing deserving historical notice. He swept down half a game of
chess yesterday with his tail and rolled one of the pieces into an
inaccessible corner but he's been on best Sunday behaviour all this
morning.

I've begun a course of circulating library here but find it very
hard. The stupider I am, myself, the stupider I think books, and
modern novels are so tiresome in the way they jump about to different
places and people in every chapter till I can't recollect where I am,
nor who anybody is. When am I to see some Pipers? 2

It's one o'clock. I've ate as much sandwich as I can for lunch,
and now it's five hours to tea-time snowing hard with the sky the
colour of an H. lead-pencil and I don't know what in the world to
do with myself for those five hours.



To Miss KATE GiiEENAWAY 3

[SANDGATE] 22nd [February].

Yes, I think it would have been a little better if you had been
there, than waiting five hours all alone for dinner. If only the spring
would ever come, I'd think about it! What a fuss there'd be in the
Sandgate papers !

1 [Referred to in Kate Greenaway, p. 170.]

a [Tfie Pied Piper of Hamelin, by Robert Browning, with 35 Illustrations by
Kate Greenaway. Engraved and printed in colours by Edmund Evans.]
3 [Summarised in Kate Greenaway, p. 170.]



1888] THE PIED PIPER 601

Yes, please send me the proofs of Piper without colour I'm very
impatient for them. And so many thanks for names of books I find
the books for young girls sometimes nice but there's such a rage
now for breaking children's backs, it began with Misunderstood l that
one never knows what's going to happen whenever they go out walking.

What is Kidnapped about ?



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