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Sidgwick, Mary (d 1879) mother of Henry Sidgwick
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Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

Explains that he did not hear of the birth of Mary's baby [E.F./Fred Benson] until some days after the event. Sends his love to her. Does not expect that [J.W.?] Hales will have time to see him. Reports that he has had Arthur to breakfast that morning. Relates that he seems 'lively enough', that he is staying with Symonds, but not in his house, and that he goes to the Lakes on Thursday morning.

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

Writes to say that he cannot come the following day due to his hayfever. States that he will probably 'leave town' for about a week - the second week in July - for the seaside, if he manages to shake it off entirely. Undertakes to write again when he knows where he shall be when she passes [London], so that she may write and tell him the exact time she will be there. States that he has decided not to go to Tawney, because of his hayfever. Reports that he has been spending most of his time seeing friends, and that there are more to see. Asks her to tell Arthur that a cousin of E.E. Bowen's - Reverend C. Bowen - will probably [be calling on him].

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

Explains that he had just heard from [Roden?] Noel that he intends to come on 19 [December], when he received his mother's letter [apparently informing him of an outbreak of measles in the area]. Does not believe that there would be a danger of contagion, but intends to write to Noel, alluding to 'the fact of measles', but not suggesting that they should not come. Advises her to expect him on 18 or 19 [December] if she does not hear from him.

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

Announces that he has promised to go to Oxford on 13 [May], and can be back on 15 [May], but warns that [Cambridge] 'will be rather empty, as the undergraduates will all be gone. States that the exam is from 8 to 13 [May], and that the most festive week is 23 to 30 [May]. States that he is free on 6 [June], and explains that he goes to town for the night of 3 [June], as a part of his work ends on 2 [June]. Tells her to come when she likes. Explains that Mrs Peile lives one and a half miles out of Cambridge, 'so it would perhaps be hard to ask her to get lodgings.'

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

Tells her to inform him whether she will not come on 6 [June], and states that Trinity Sunday 'ought not to be missed'. Asks her about the type of accommodation she would like, and anticipates no difficulty in finding somewhere for her.

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

Announces that he intends to come to see her on Tuesday, and that he will be staying with C[harles] Bernard at Hampstead. Refers to the possibility of his mother going abroad, and hopes that she will avail of the opportunity. Thanks her for her offer of hospitality to Bernard and undertakes to bring her his answer. Declares that Mary has not written, but he 'take[s] the will for the deeds.' States that the present age 'is too busy a one for epistolary communion...' Declares that this is his last examination.

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

Thanks her for the books, and tells her that he still has two pots of marmalade. Asks her not to send just yet the 'John Baptist', which he is thinking of having framed. States that if he can find time he shall go down to Rugby 'in the course of the term.' Reports that the Provost of King's [College: Richard Okes] asked him to dine 'to meet the Moul[ ]s. Refers to a conversation he had with 'the Rector', who 'talked about old Cambridge - Macaulay, Praed etc'. Asks her to tell Arthur that 'the book on the bible is Exegetisches Handbuch zum Alten Testament', which is in 'innumerable parts by different authors'. Announces that Cambridge 'is getting lively', and that they are to have a University Gazette 'and become very vocal.'

Letter from Janet Catherine Symonds to Henry Sidgwick

Suggests that he come to visit them about 28 December for four or five days. Explains that Johnnie could not go away before that. Sympathises with him about photographing. Reports that Johnnie is better than he has been for weeks. Expresses her sympathies in relation to the 'revolution' at Rugby [the departure of the headmaster Frederick Temple?]. Sends her love to Sidgwick's mother, and asks him to tell her how sorry she is for her. Reports that they have had Mr Myers with them a good deal during the autumn. She 'cannot help wondering always if he will "last"...in Mr [Conington]'s sense of the word.' Reports that Dr Symonds is ill again, but hopes that it is just a temporary relapse.

Symonds, Janet Catherine North (1837-1913) author

Letter from G.O. Trevelyan to Nora Sidgwick

Greatly values Henry Sidgwick: A Memoir: it is 'exactly the right size and shape and perfectly got up in the medium between want of elegance and that sort of external and decorative pretension which alienates the true reader.' Expresses his admiration of the portraits, and calls the one of Henry's mother' a revelation of the past'. Wishes that there was one of Nora. Reports that he has read again all round the allusions to himself, and declares himself to be very proud of being there. Looks forward to a very careful reading 'with the recollection of the ships in mind.'

Trevelyan, Sir George Otto (1838-1928) 2nd Baronet, statesman and historian

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

Reports that he arrived safe [in Cambridge] the previous night. States that the Windermere Hotel was very good. Refers to his journey to Bowness and Rugby. Reports that many people are still up in Cambridge, and that he has begun work. Thanks her for sending him a book and letters. Reports that the previous day was 'splendid', and hopes that William and his uncle 'are having it fine' that day.

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

Reports that he arrived an hour late [at Kegan Paul's house, Bailie, Wimborne], 'but in good time for dinner, after a most delightful journey.' Describes the weather and scenery, and declares that if he had gone on Friday, he should not have got beyond Temple-combe, 'as the Somerset and Dorset line is dreadfully demoralized'. Hopes that she is better for the change of weather. Reports that he missed [J.B?] Payne, [A. G. Vernon?] Harcourt and [J.?] Conington. Adds that Miss Ritchie, who is engaged to his friend [Francis Cornish], 'is not the one [he] mark[s] highest.'

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to Mary "Minnie" Benson

Suggests that he had better pay the visit to which he looks forward, having ascertained from [Henry Weston] Eve 'that Edward had attained the desire of his laziness, and extolled Easter Holidays from an unwilling Committee...' Asks whether she intends to go to Rugby for the vacation. Informs her that the only time he can go to them is 'the Monday week after Easter to stay till the Saturday: or two or three days at the beginning of Passion week...' Explains that he has asked a friend [G. O. Trevelyan] to stay with them at Rugby for the week after Easter, and that he intends to go down to examine at Harrow at the end of March. Refers to a poem entitled 'Wander, o wander', which he wrote for her, and which now appears in 'McMillan's magazine'. Reports that he told their mother, and that she wrote him 'a reproachful criticism for being so unfeeling towards the young lady!' Asks if she has seen [Nathaniel] Hawthorne's [The] Scarlet Letter, which he judges to be 'a wonderful work'. Reports that he is just getting to the end of his hard work, as the Littlego begins the following Monday. Refers to an enclosed poem of [E.E.] Bowen's, [not included], about the Rifle-Corps. Tells her to show it to Donne, if he has not seen it.

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

[Sent from Liverpool]:- Hopes that Arthur 'settled about the bill all right.' Writes to inform her of his travel plans. Goes to the Isle of Man that day to examine there for a week, and in about a fortnight intends to go to Marlborough for another examination. In the meantime intends to call at Wellington College. Asks if they [Edward and Minnie Benson] can take him in, and if not he will go on to Eton after seeing her. When he shall come depends on his hayfever. Anxious to hear about her plans for the summer. Announces that he is going abroad after the Marlborough exam and will come home earlier than he otherwise would if she has a house. Reports that he has not heard from Rugby in a long time. Is not looking forward to a long sea voyage. Wishes now that he hadn't taken the examination. Refers to the Cambridge prizes and to the fact that Arthur won the prize for the composition of a Greek ode. Claims to be very glad that James Rhoades got the English verse, and believes that the disappointment 'will do Myers a great deal of good.' Asks her to tell Minnie that he got the papers all right. Hopes they are all well. Has ordered 'parcels and things' to be sent to Wellington College. Reports that he has been researching the Isle of Man. Asks her when she is going to see the Exhibition, which 'is only like a big shop-window', and claims that the day he spent there with Graham Dakyns he was more bored than he has been for a long time. Asks her to write to him in the Isle of Man.

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

Remarks on how strange it is 'to have a New Year opening on [him] with a prospect of quite unclouded happiness.' He is too old to expect life to be perfect, but cannot imagine that anything but happiness can ever come to him through NS. [Incomplete?].

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

[Sent from Roden Noel's]:- Asks her, on receipt of the letter, to send off the box he left, 'corded...by Parcel delivery.' Announces that he shall be in Cambridge on Saturday night and that he should like to have it by Monday. Refers to his having had 'a complete holiday for a month', something he has 'not had for some time'; supposes holidays 'do one good' but always feels as if he should not be taking them. Still, has enjoyed himself, and declares that he 'had some good talk at Bailie.' Indicates his desire to invite Paul to come to Rugby. Reports that he saw Dr Rowland Williams [at Bailie/Rugby?], and believes that he is 'quite sincere in thinking that he is one of the very few orthodox clergymen in England now.' Reports that he found Cowell looking much better than he expected, and trusts now that the disease of the heart 'will not prove rapidly fatal'; does not know whether there is any hope of his 'ultimate recovery'. Announces that he himself is not well, 'owing to the sea-air having proved too strong a tonic as it always does with [him]'. States that he is pleased to hear that his pupil has [left] Cambridge for a term and gone to Jamaica, so that he shall be responsible for his being '[plucked] in [ ].'

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

Undertakes to write to Trevelyan about F. Horton [probably Frank Horton; possibly his brother Fred]. Is unsure whether any more nominations will be given by patronage, 'as the Government is going to throw them open to competition.' Encloses their list bulletin [not included], and asks her if she can get any subscriptions to their exhibition fund. Announces that, if she wishes it, he will send his Westminsterto Mrs Penny when he gets it back. Does not believe that the latter would sympathise with the ideas in his article, or such a subject. Asks her to thank her for 'her kind message.' Claims that he remembers her very well, and should be glad to meet her again.

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

Regrets that Symonds is too ill to come to Rugby; Henry would like his mother to have met Mrs Symonds, of whom he is very fond. Is unsure when he shall come to visit his mother, but mentions some time in Passion Week, if she has room for him. Is glad to hear that she had a pleasant visit at Oxford. Refers to William and his health problems, and to the probable benefits to him of 'the change of scene and work.' Remarks that the Universities are full of change and restlessness, and that 'there is very little prospect of [ ] for most people who stay on there at present.' Refers to Trevelyan and his regret at not being able to assist their 'young friend' [Horton]. Does not know what to do for the latter now, but promises that if he sees his way 'to earwigging any other eminent statesman', he will. Asks if she has read Patterson's book, which he may review 'in the Academy.'

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

Writes to ask her to inform William of certain developments; that 'W.A. Wright [new member of the Ad Eundem] cannot come'; that he himself will come if his hayfever is not too bad; and that he has not yet heard from the other new member. States that he is glad to hear that he [William?] is going on so well. Expresses his regret at the news of 'the calamity', involving Dr Meyer. States that he has never met the latter, but that he has heard a good deal from Mary about a Miss Meyer. Reports that [in Cambridge] they are all 'quiet and prosperous', and that he is 'rather hard at work with a variety of teachings.' Asks whether she has got any subscriptions for him for the ladies' lectures. Reports that he has read the greater part of Disraeli's novel [Lothair?], and does not think it equal to the best of his earlier ones, but states that 'it is very light and amusing reading.' Does not think that he has read anything else lately except Rossetti's poems, some of which he judges to be 'splendid', but he would not recommend the whole book.

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

Discusses the withdrawal of Temple of his essay in Essays and Reviews; is not satisfied with Temple's explanation of his step, as was one of those who had 'rejoiced' at Temple's elevation [as Bishop of Exeter], because of his belief in his convictions. Refers to the question raised by Wilson and Jowett, and to the bishop's speech in Convocation, which he describes as 'very courageous'. Declares that Temple 'has said for his collaborators in E[ssays and R[eviews]. what none of his friends dared to say when the question of his appointment was being discussed: and what is hardly reconcilable with the Apologia that some of them - e.g. E. W. B[enson] - made for him.' Regrets to say that most liberals that he has met speak more strongly against the bishop than he has written here, and that he 'almost always find[s himself] defending him'. At the same time, does not think the controversy very important in relation to other controversies and changes 'impending over the Church of England' at that time. Asks her to remember him very kindly to Miss [J], and hopes that the weather has improved. States that he is very busy working on the ladies lecture, and doing secretarial work.

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

Thanks her for her letter, and undertakes to write soon. Remarks that Mr Boyd's letter 'is very kind in tone', and wishes that something could be done for the youth [Frank Horton?]. Informs her that he has not been able to decide on the plan he proposed to her. Regrets to tell her that he shall not be coming to see her in July, as he intends to go to Germany for the Long Vacation, starting in June. States that he wants to work at German philosophy 'and also to renew old associations.' Claims that 'there is not much advice to give [Miss Horton] except to tell her that Stone's short or long are the things that pay.' Asks if she is in Brighton, and says that he may go there on his way to the continent.

Reports that Mr Boyd has not exactly taken his view. Feels that his disapproval of Mr Love's views might prevent his asking a favour for himself or a relation of his.

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

Reports that he cannot, after all, go to Brighton, as he shall be delayed in England and London for longer than he expected, and also explains that Brighton is a bad place for hayfever. On reflection does not think that he could do Miss Horton much good by anything he could say 'in a [ ] of conversation.' He would be glad to do anything he could, and undertakes to go and see his aunt [Henrietta?] when he returns in October, 'if she is still there and it is convenient.' Announces that he is very busy at the moment, and that he hopes to leave London on Thursday or Friday for Ostend. Regrets that he cannot come to visit her. Remarks on the Civil Service being thrown open to competition. Thinks that the best thing that they can do for 'young [Frank?] Horton is to assist him in preparing himself for the examination.' Undertakes to try and enquire about this in town, and to write to her again on the matter. Reports that he is extremely well, and that he takes exercise on cloudy and rainy days.

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

Writes from 'a really very comfortable apartment' which he is renting for twenty francs a week. Reports that his hayfever is keeping itself 'at a respectful distance.' Describes Ostend as 'the dullest and unloveliest of resorts', but declares that it has 'a fine spacious promenade along the sea', and that the air is good. Reports that he stayed a day or two at Dover, 'but found it not so good.' States that he has 'just been up to the "Digue" and watched the moonlight on the breaking waves.' Asks her to send the enclosed [not included] on. States that he has asked the Porter to forward his letters to her, and asks her to open them, keep bills and circulars and to forward the letters to Ostend, or to Berlin, to which he intends going towards the end of the month. Asks her to tell Arthur 'to see "Home" at the Haymarket instead of "M.P.". Declares the latter to be 'almost too ridiculous.' Would like to know where he will be in August.

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

Thanks her for her letter. Claims to be divided between staying in Ostend for the quality of the air, and a desire to get to Berlin, which he wishes to see again as the capital of a united Germany: 'partially united, that is, "in shpots," as Hans Breitmann [in comic works by Leland] says". Thinks he shall start on Monday, and will travel from Cologne to Berlin by night. Thanks her for the information about Switzerland, and hopes that she will come. Intends to stay in Germany until the end of September. Reports that he is reading German books, and has an idea of making 'a sort of tour of the universities.' Intends to go to Heidelberg from Switzerland. Regrets to hear that Arthur is not well. Hopes that 'the remarkable unity of feeling among the masters...will make up to Rugby for the dullness or worse of the head [Hayman]'.

In relation to the young Horton, reports that he tried to find out about the civil service appointments, 'but have not yet made anything out', and states that the arrangements for giving them away by examination are probably to be published in the near future. Declares that his original plan of having him at Cambridge would not be suitable, but predicts that 'it may possibly be revived in a new form in connection with this examination - if nothing better suggests itself.'

Expects that his mother will get some dividends for him, and if so, asks her to keep them until she gets his addresss in Berlin and send them in a registered letter. Also asks her to ask his uncle John Sidgwick to pay his [Henry's] share into Mortlock and Co.'s Bank, Cambridge. Asks her to forward the enclosed [not included] to his uncle Albert.

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

Informs her that he is settled in at an address in Berlin. States that he left Ostend on 'the 7th' for Cologne, and proceeded on Tuesday to Berlin, but had an attack of hay fever. Claims that he has now recovered. Asks her to send him his Great Indian Peninsula Dividends and Great Eastern Debenture Interest if they have arrived. States that he is very glad to hear about Christopher Benson, and says of the woman he loves that he does not see why, 'having once come to love him, she should not be just as happy as if he had more in the way of legs.' Reports that the friend he had hoped to see [in Berlin] 'is unfortunately absent'. Thinks of going to Halle and Gottingen, and perhaps to Heidelberg too, after Berlin. Also plans to go to Switzerland, but is unsure. Asks her to inform him of her plans anyway.

Of Hayman [new headmaster of Rugby], states that the idea he got about him when last at Rugby was 'that the line he had planned for himself was a very good one - conciliation and [firmness] combined - only that he wanted the moral and aesthetic culture necessary for carrying out his conception...', and in relation to his speech, states that, from what he can gather from his mother's report, he appears to be sticking to his plan. Reports on the heat in Berlin, and to the drainage difficulties. Remarks on the fact that the prices have been increased since Berlin 'became the metropolis of North Germany', and complains that he is spending a lot of money.

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

[Sent from Lucerne]:- Expresses his appreciation at receiving her letter. Is sorry to hear that she has still all her troubles [with moving house?] before her. Announces that he shall not be going home until the end of September due to health reasons. Does not want to shorten his German visit, as he shall be in the company of some old schoolfriends from Rugby. He, Graham Dakyns, Green and Rutson set off the following day on their tour. They intend to spend twelve days in the Bernese Oberland, and then Henry goes off to Dresden. Reports that he and Dakyns enjoyed their stay in Paris, despite the fact that Bury Dakyns, who joined them there to improve his French, 'was the most awful bore.' Reports that he fell ill and had to stay some days at Lucerne, and that Dakyns is pretty well. Remarks on the heat on the continent, which is more dead and stifling than than in England. Relates that they met the [William?] Boyds in Paris. Tells her mother to write to him during the next week. Sends his love to his aunt and cousins.

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to Mary "Minnie" Benson

Remarks on the length of time it has been since they have been in contact 'except casually'. Claims that he has been waiting anxiously for the other Initial paper.' Urges her not to be lazy, and to write [it], and assures her that she will be glad of it afterwards. Mentions that he heard from their mother about the problems with the drainage, and hopes that 'the Prince is all right now: and that Edward has "repaired the semestrial losses". ' Refers to the fact that he has been offered a mastership at Rugby, and had at first accepted it. Announces that he has now refused it. Admits that he has behaved very badly, but claims that it has cost him much mental struggle to break his word. Thought it better 'not to prolong the error of a day into the mistake of a life.' States that he is going abroad to shake the whole thing off his mind.

Lists some of the reasons why he had accepted the offer in the first place, including the fact that their mother wanting to go there, his wish to live with her and his liking for Rugby, his having such an admiration for Dr Temple, his liking [A.G.] Butler so much, and explains that they all made him neglect the fact that he knows that his vocation in life 'to be not teaching, but study.' States that Edward will understand better than she, and asks her to show him the letter. States that he wishes him to know the truth of the matter, since he will probably hear of it from elsewhere.

Tells her not to send the next paper to him, but to Miss [Annette?] Kitchener in Newmarket, and that if she has anything to say to him, to address any correspondence to Post Restante Paris. Supposes that she has heard from their mother since he left her. States that she 'was quite well then at the Raikes, but she is now at Leeds.' Admits that part of the regret he feels in relation to his conduct is due to the predicted reaction of his mother to it.

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

Refers to Dr Andrew Clark, and his failure to adequately treat Mary's complaint; hopes soon to have a better account of the matter. Cannot persuade Nora to give an exact date for their wedding: her eldest brother [Arthur Balfour], who will have to entertain their friends, is expected home in a few days, and she wishes to wait for him to come home before making a final decision. The wedding will definitely be in the week before Passion Week, and most probably on the Tuesday of that week; hopes that this will suit his mother. Suggests that it would probably most comfortable for her to accept 'Lucy's invitation' [to stay with her]. Encloses a list of the presents that they have already received [not included]. Claims that he cannot think 'of anything that remains ungiven except breakfast, dinner and dessert services, spoons, knives and forks etc.', but presumes that she will think of other things.

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

Asks her to forward [James?] Stuart's address. Reports that he has obtained permission to read in the library in Berlin, and intends to stay some days, after which he plans to go to Halle or Göttingen. Claims that he is reading no English, and that 'the immersion in a different set of words and ideas is entertaining enough', but that the main object of his visit will not be realised. Asks if people are afraid of war in England, and reports that they 'are taking it very coolly' in Berlin, and that the papers 'affect to be amused [with] the French.' Transcribes an advertisement from a German newspaper. Asks her not to read the letters addressed to him, as 'the writers might not like it always', and asks her to just send on all but bills and printed circulars. States that there is a word in Stuart's address that he cannot read, and suggests that perhaps Arthur knows it.

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

Reports that he is 'still lingering' in Berlin, and that he goes to Halle on Friday. Complains that nobody there wants to talk philosophy, and states that 'the atmosphere is too exciting to read much. Claims that the [Franco-German] war is 'a disgrace to civilisation', and that his only comfort is that Napoleon, 'when he sees that every month of war is doing more to unite Germany than ten years of peace, will make it as short as he can.' Believes that if he wins the first battle he will propose to stop, 'taking Luxembourg and glory, and leaving Germany alone.' Reports that his friends believe Prussia would not take this. Asks her to forward the enclosures [not included].

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

Acknowledges receipt of the money she sent to him. Refers to his pleasant existence in Berlin, and states that he intends to go soon to Halle, then to Göttingen, and on to Heidelberg, and hopes to meet up with her in Switzerland about the middle of August. Discusses the war; believes that it might have been prevented 'if more trouble had been taken to prevent real misunderstanding on the French side'. States that, while not regarding him as a statesman, he believes in Ollivier's honesty. Does not believe that Benedetti's last request was intended as a provocation, and contends that the king of Prussia could have rejected it courteously. Claims that the 'guilt of the war rests with France', who 'claim supremacy in Europe: every other civilised nation claims only equal rights.' Hopes that the Prince of Hohenzollern 'will now retract his retraction', but thinks this unlikely. Refers to his mother's question as to 'the "good" of such a poem as [Rossetti's] "Jenny" ', and claims to not understand her meaning. Believes it to be 'a perfectly truthful delineation of common-place fact', and explains that 'the pathetic effect of the poem is intended to spring from it's [sic] fidelity to commonplace...' States that if her objection were on the grounds that the subject is too disagreeable, he would argue that the range of tragedy would be limited a good deal 'if one excluded all disagreeable subjects.' Is sorry to hear about Arthur, and asks if ' "this tyranny" throw[s] more work on the assistant masters'. With regard to his personal letters, states that there is perhaps one in a hundred of them that he would not like to be read by anyone else, because of the nature of the subject matter. Hopes that she does not mind sending them on to him.

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