Item 6 - Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

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Add. MS c/99/6


Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother


  • [19 Jul 1860] (Creation)

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[Sent from London]:- Reports that he has been unexpectedly detained in England, due to Patterson having delayed his arrival in London for two days. Has decided not to go to Heidelberg until the Autumn, and has decided on Berlin as the place of his residence. Announces that Edward Benson has given him introductions to professors there. Reports that he has not heard from Mrs [A ], but he may yet, as his letters from Cambridge have not yet been forwarded on to him. Expresses his wish to visit Heidelberg 'and enjoy the wonderful beauty of the castle', but does not intend to stay there as long as he had at first intended. Hopes that his mother received his parcel 'and found the philosophy soothing and elevating'; and also hopes that she continues with her walking.

Reports that he is now staying with his friend Cowell, 'who is living here now en garçon, as his family are gone to Norway'. Claims to be enjoying himself a good deal. Reports that he went to see Holman Hunt [Hunt's picture, The Finding of Christ in the Temple] again, and maintains that the picture improves every time he goes. Announces that that night he is going 'to witness some spirit rapping'. In relation to poetry, states that he has 'no "[afflatus]" ', and can't write any. Reports that at Cambridge he is considered 'irretrievably donnish.' Reports that there is another book lately published by the ' "[ ] etc" ' Praises the Saturday Review, and predicts that he will miss it in Berlin. Sends his love to William. Asks her to send Arthur's address to him in Berlin.

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Part transcription in Sidgwick, Arthur, and Sidgwick, E. M, 'Henry Sidgwick'. London: Macmillan, 1906, p 53.

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