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Fry, Roger Eliot (1866-1934) painter and art critic
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Letter from Roger Fry to R. C. Trevelyan

22 Lungarno Acciajuoli, Florence. - Is glad Trevelyan is coming out to Italy: they must meet. Trevelyan must not be discouraged by his current difficulties. When B.B. and he were discussing Moore's book [Thomas Sturge Moore's "The Vinedresser and Other Poems"?], Berenson said he found 'far more poetry... and sense of beauty' in Trevelyan's. Has had letter from Binyon: hopes Trevelyan will see him before he comes abroad, as the 'whole business' [the quarrel over the publication of Fry's book on Bellini, see 4/28] must end soon. The 'Frullinites' are being 'chary': it's best to visit them rather than stay; has met Loeser whose personality makes Berenson's attitude understandable.

Letter from Roger Fry to R. C. Trevelyan

Ivy Holt, Dorking. - Is writing to Trevelyan instead of working on his lectures on the Byzantines. Has just read [Stephen] Philips "P&F" ["Paolo and Francesca"] and shares Trevelyan's conclusions: it is very English and there is no real poetry in it. Trevelyan, Binyon and Moore are far superior, but it is Philips whom the critics praise. Has had an irritating letter from Mrs Grandmont. Yes, Moretto was a Brescian. Describes the Frys' journey back from Italy. Has been to Westcott and thinks the house will do very well: will get to work with the friezes soon. Helen says they will be delighted to have Amica [Elizabeth van der Hoeven] any time in February; hopes he will have some time free from lecturing to show her around Dorking. His arch at the New English [Art Club] looks 'abominable'. Hopes Trevelyan and Berenson will sort things out. Sends love to Ravello.

Letter from Roger Fry to R. C. Trevelyan

Ivy Holt, Dorking. - Was good to get the Trevelyans' letter and hear good news of everyone at Ravello. Has done the composition but not yet the drawing [for another frieze at the Trevelyans' house or the illustrations for Trevelyan's "Polyphemus and Other Poems?"]. Has lots of writing to do: another "Monthly Review" article is just coming out. Is becoming 'quite Berensonian': his lectures have been plagiarised by Julia Cartwright Ady in her book ["The Painters of Florence from the thirteenth to the sixteenth century"] but it is useless to make a fuss. Is glad Lina D. G. [Duff Gordon, later Waterfield] has been praised so highly [for "The Story of Assisi"?]; his review will soon be published. He and Daniel have written about [Herbert] Cook's book on Giorgone; Maccoll has blessed the book. Has had a disagreement with Tom Moore over Fry's qualified praise of [Charles] Shannon. The baby [Julian Fry] is in no hurry to appear; Helen is well but bored with a quiet life.

Letter from Roger Fry to R. C. Trevelyan

Ivy Holt, Dorking. - News of the birth of the Frys' son; Helen is doing very well. Went riding at Cambridge with Goldie [Dickinson], was thrown and hurt his calf, only just returned in time for the birth and is still hobbling around. Saw a great deal of George [Trevelyan?] at Cambridge: has just finished reading his book ["England in the Age of Wycliffe, 1368-1520"] which is 'capital' except for the split infinitives. Hopes Bessie is well again. Asks for Trevelyan's opinion, 'as a euphonist', on whether the baby should be called Sebastian Edward or Julian Edward.

Letter from Roger Fry to R. C. Trevelyan

Leeds. - Definitely thinks that [Johnson] is acting unfairly over the publication of the book [Trevelyan's "Polyphemus and Other Poems", with illustrations by Roger Fry]. Will go and see him on his return; meanwhile Trevelyan could have the contract seen by the Authors' Society. Glasgow very full [for the Glasgow International Exhibition] - Fry ended up sleeping at a 'coffee room' - but extremely interesting: the Municipal Gallery [Kelvingrove] is fine; Fry does not believe it's a Giorgione. Also saw Newbattle [Abbey] though due to a storm he could only see the Piero di Cosimo ["Vulcan and Aeolus"] by gas light. Goes tomorrow to Liverpool, then to Gloucester to take B.B. [Berenson] to Sir H[ubert] Parry's house before returning to Dorking. Is sorry to have been unsympathetic about Trevelyan's 'Indian play' ["The Pearl-Tree"?].

Letter from Roger Fry to R. C. Trevelyan

Saxifield, Filey Road, Scarborough. - Saw Johnson on Tuesday: he wants to press on with the book [Trevelyan's "Polyphemus and Other Poems", with illustrations by Roger Fry] and needs a title to go in his catalogue. Johnson says the expense will be around £50 with a fee of £5 to Fry for the twelve drawings: Fry thinks this is not quite possible but he and Trevelyan can discuss when they meet. Wet and cold in Scarborough, but Daniel has taken him for a ride which he enjoyed after some nerves due to his last experience [a fall when riding with Goldie Dickinson, see 4/36]

Letter from Roger Fry to R. C. Trevelyan

Hotel du Luxembourg, Avignon. - There is still time for Trevelyan to send his letters of introduction to Marseilles, as Fry and his wife have 'loafed about a great deal' on the journey south on their honeymoon. Impressions of Avignon. Has begun to draw 'in a lazy sort of way'. Encloses a cheque for wedding costs, and expresses gratitude; it was good of Trevelyan to see them off: unorthodox, but emblematic of the fact that they don't intend to isolate themselves in marriage. Has been reading Theocritus, mostly in translation; would be 'absolutely happy' if he knew Greek and Latin well, but he never will. Trevelyan should not scoff: he does not know what a drunken man's liver looks like and Fry does.

Letter from Roger Fry to R. C. Trevelyan

Ivy Holt, Dorking. - Went to see the Duchess [portrait of Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire, exhibited for sale at Agnews] and came to the same conclusion as Trevelyan [that it was not by Gainsborough: see "Athenaeum", Nov 23 1901, p.766]. Trevelyan is also quite right about the Chigi picture: has written to Binyon about it for the "Northern Chronicle". Is sorry 'it's been such a long & weary business for Bessie' and hopes it's over. Has begun on [the restoration of] Cook's altarpiece.

Letter from Roger Fry to R. C. Trevelyan

Ivy Holt, Dorking. - The book [Trevelyan's "Polyphemus and Other Poems"] is 'disgusting' and Johnson is to blame for the poor quality reproduction of Fry's illustrations: vows to cut the blocks and oversee the printing himself next time. Helen has taken Julian to Failand and he is staying on a few days to finish a Band of Hope banner for the Hodgkins [his relatives] at Lowick; thinks this is the best thing he's ever done and wishes he could get more work 'on this level of fine decoration' as he loves working within the limits imposed. His watercolours have been successful: three other people tried to buy the Chantilly after Trevelyan. Wishes Trevelyan a happy Christmas and envies him being out of England for it: perhaps they should all spend a winter at Ravello together.

Letter from Roger Fry to R. C. Trevelyan

Ivy Holt, Dorking. - He and Helen much distressed to hear of Ida Cresswell's marital difficulties: her husband's affair seems insane, but she is brave and will pull through. Is leaning towards beech trees for Trevelyan's picture; will send some ideas of composition soon: thinks he has the pose of the figures. Has finished the second volume of the "Arabian Nights". Has finished Horne's and Mrs Gibson's pictures. The family is well though Julian is upset not to be able to dig outside because of the weather. They have met a 'very nice curate'. They go to Failand on the 27th and then on to Bruge. Saw Entiknapp [Enticknap].

Letter from Roger Fry to R. C. Trevelyan

Florence. - Asks if he can borrow about £250 to buy two pictures he has found in Venice and believes to be two of Jacopo Bellini's lost pieces for the Scuola [Grande di San Giovanni Evangelista], which he wants to secure for the National Gallery. Cannot expect Poynter to buy them. Horne has seen photographs and agrees they are worth the money; if Fry cannot sell them at cost price to the National Gallery Trevelyan will share in any profit. Postscript notes that he has found two more Jacopos in a gallery.

Letter from Roger Fry to R. C. Trevelyan

Failand House, Failand, Nr Bristol. - Trevelyan should not show that he is hurt to Mariechen [Mary Berenson: see also 4/49 and 4/51] and everything will 'fizzle out'. Thursday will probably be too early to meet:they will have just returned with the children and Helen will be busy with the new nurse from Failand. Suggest they meet on Friday in London: Fry is going to Carfax's to see the Sargent pictures.

Letter from Roger Fry to R. C. Trevelyan

Dorking. - Asks why Trevelyan thought he might have died: did he see the death of Fry the bookmaker in an Italian paper? Was in fact not at all well yesterday. The children have had measles and the weather is dreadful: is determined not to spend another winter in Britain. They have taken the house at Hampstead [22 Willow Road] but the landlord is making difficulties about allowing alterations. The Piero di Cosimo scheme has fallen though.

Letter from Roger Fry to R. C. Trevelyan

Dorking. - Is well again now: it was noble of Bessie not to tell Trevelyan. Helen was a little troubled by the wire and letter. The measles is passing: Julian is almost well, but his sister who came to help nurse has come down with it now. The new landlord [for 22 Willow Road, Hampstead] is still making difficulties. Envies Trevelyan for being in Ravello: he wishes he had the courage to 'chuck England' and live cheaply in Italy: 'sunshine is more important than society'. Loathes art criticism more and more and longs to create. Has nearly done Cook's picture, then will turn to Trevelyan's Claude. He and Helen are reading slowly through [Henry James's] "The Wings of the Dove". Their regards to all at the Palumbo.

Letter from Roger Fry to R. C. Trevelyan

22 Willow Road, Hampstead. - Is glad Trevelyan is back: the Frys will be at the Carfax Gallery around 2.30 but it will be best for him to come round to dinner to see the house. Hopes he will be able to see Fry's show [at the Carfax]: Marsh and Lytton [Strachey, or Sir Neville Bulwer-Lytton?] have bought many things; hopes his friends do not think the show is 'a polite form of passing round the hat'. Greets Bessie. Is sad not to be near the Trevelyans: perhaps the Frys will persuade them to move to Hampstead.

Letter from Roger Fry to R. C. Trevelyan

22 Willow Road, Hampstead. - Apologises for the rebuke Trevelyan has received from Mariechen [Mary Berenson; see also 4/45 and 4/51]: Trevelyan was indiscreet, but only 'delightfully and charmingly', and Fry should not have told Mary he knew B.B's attitude towards him. '[T]hese people' pretend not to mind anything and then 'change the rules of the game'. What Trevelyan told Fry about the Jacopo Bellini's did no harm as he knew it already. He and Helen had a good time in France despite the weather; they particularly enjoyed Laon: the view reminds him of something by Pater on Kominck [?]. They go to Failand on Monday to collect the children and return on Thursday.

Letter from Roger Fry to R. C. Trevelyan

Hotel de la Place, Veules, Seine Inférieure. - Asks about Trevelyan's new home: Roundhurst sounds 'almost baronial', and Fry does not think it is time for 'another Abbotsbury & mediaeval revival', though a mail coat 'like Mr Chainmail' [in Thomas Love Peacock's "Crotchet Castle"] would suit him. He and Helen are both very happy; they are reading [Flaubert's] "Bouvard & Pécuchet" together and he is reading Wilhelm Meister in French translation. They drank a bottle of wine last night in honour of Trevelyan's letter (cider is their usual drink) and Helen vowed to dive headfirst into the sea if the weather was calm: she did this today to much admiration. It was very hot in Italy, and hard to travel; they have come to France to 'get fat'. Describes their time in Venice, where they both did much work; they then stopped at Padua, Vicenza, Verona, Brescia, Bergamo, and Saronno; Fry got to know the Verona and Vicenza artists. Has done a lot of studies, and has started to think about Trevelyan's fan [?]. Is delighted Trevelyan wants to buy his picture ["The Valley of the Seine"] which he thinks the best thing he has done so far. Does not agree about [Thomas Sturge] Moore's "Woodstock Maze". Asks about Pan in Trevelyan's 'fan poem', with a sketch of the god. Is sorry Cyclops has 'escaped' Trevelyan [a reference to Trevelyan's "Polyphemus"?]. Is not sure whether he can take up the invitation to Wallington: may go to Newton [Newton Hall, home of the Widdrington family] to alter some of his portraits there and give some lectures in Newcastle but his plans are vague: depends on how quickly they find a house. Trevelyan must visit them after his trip to Bayreuth.

A paragraph written and signed by Helen Fry in the middle of the letter thanks Trevelyan for his letter and assures him that she and Roger are happy and 'just the same'; she is glad he likes Roger's picture.

Letter from Roger Fry to R. C. Trevelyan

22 Willow Road, Hampstead, N.W. - The Frys have had to give up the idea of coming to Guildford due to Pamela's ill health; Helen is very low as it seems the children will never be well. Invites Trevelyan to visit when next in town. Is much enjoying [Gregorio] Leti's life of Sixtus V. The 'little fracas' with the Berensons is happily settled [see also 4/45 and 4/49].

Letter from Roger Fry to R. C. Trevelyan

Madeira Cottage, Lyme Regis. - Has had liver trouble: apologising for not writing sooner to thank Trevelyan for his letter and Moore's poem. Change of scene has not been as effective as he hoped so far and Helen has been rather silent, but he thinks the last few days have been better. Wishes for some sunlight. Thinks Bertie [Russell's] article in the "Independent Review" ["Free Man's Worship"] is very kind though cannot match his resignation: clings to 'a cowardly "hope"'. Margery hopes to put on a masque for the opening of the new Library at Somerville College: asks if Trevelyan could write something

Letter from Roger Fry to R. C. Trevelyan

Madeira Cottage, Lyme Regis. - Still more or less an invalid and can write while Helen is taking walks with Margery and the nurse. Helen is certainly in a better and more stable condition. The masque [for the opening of the new library at Somerville College, see 4/55] would be put on in June so he supposes Trevelyan will not be able to manage it, but it would be a pity. They want a mythological subject, the Triumph of Athene over Aphrodite and Juno, and Margery could send details. Asks where the Trevelyans are planning to go abroad. Stresses that he does like Bertie's article [Russell's "Free Man's Worship"].

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