Scope and content
Trinity College, Cambridge. - Is very glad for Bob's happiness. Had felt that he was 'restless & unsatisfied' about his work or something else, and sometimes thought it 'would be the best thing possible' for him to marry, but did not think this would happen as he thought Bob was 'not that kind of person'. Very glad that he is, and that he will now feel 'life is quite magnificent' and be able to write his poetry and 'not feel lonely'. Regarding the lady Bob has spoken of to him [Lina Duff Gordon: see e.g. 9/96], thinks Bob should 'write to her at one as an intimate friend saying that she will no doubt be interested' to hear about his engagement, 'making no reference to the possibility that she might have cared about [him]', as if she is in love with him she should hear as soon as possible that it is 'hopeless', and he thinks it would be 'nicer for her' to hear directly from Bob, not as gossip; tells him to 'write nicely'. If she does not care for him, it will still be 'polite', and help them to stay friends; understands he 'values her friendship'. He will tell people in the [Apostles] Society this evening. Asks him to pass on congratulations to Miss Van der Hoeven and tell her he thinks she is 'very fortunate' and that he is 'really rather cross with her' as now he will not see so much of Bob, and feels he will miss him 'dreadfully'. Does not think Bob's descriptions are 'enthusiastic' enough; perhaps he thought Sanger might 'scoff' if he 'rave[d] too much'; in fact he rather 'shocked' him by 'being able to write so reasonably'. Has been 'fighting the damned clerical [?]' all afternoon, and there was a 'good moral victory' as they 'only just missed the necessary 2/3 majority''. Realises now how 'very terrible' the [Second Boer] war must be for Bob, and hopes he has not said anything to 'really hurt' him.