Item 1 - Letter from Elizabeth des Amorie van der Hoeven to R. C. Trevelyan

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TRER/9/1

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Letter from Elizabeth des Amorie van der Hoeven to R. C. Trevelyan

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  • 19 May 1899 (Creation)

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10 Prinsegracht, The Hague. - They have not yet retired to their 'Retraite Edéniencee [ie, at Ede]', as her cousin calls it; does not think they will go before early June. The Grandmonts are still where she left them at Rocca Bella [Taormina, Sicily] at the end of April; they are travelling back with an English friend, stopping only briefly at Florence and Bâle. Was sorry to leave Italy 'like that' but it could not be helped; made her all the more anxious to return another time. Wrote to her cousin [Bramine Hubrecht] and sent her Trevelyan's messages, but does not know whether she will go to England this summer; he does not seem anxious to go and she supposes 'the husband's opinion has great weight in these matters!'. She herself will not be able to; is currently here alone at home with her uncle and aunt [Paul François Hubrecht and his wife Maria] and would not like to leave them when she would have to go 'to fit in with Senior's week at St. Andrews'. Thanks Trevelyan for his letter and the trouble he took with the list of books, though she has not yet got all those he suggested, in part because the library is currently closed. Fortunately the director is a friend of the family and can be persuaded to break the rule forbidding books to be taken or sent into the country, so they sometimes get a good selection sent to Ede; however spring-cleaning is 'a holy business' in this country so she must wait. Asks if Trevelyan could possibly send some of the books he listed: something by Henry James; his father's book; [Robert] Browning's letters; she will get [William?] Morris's "Life" [by J. W. MacKail and his brother's book from the library. Has been reading [Elizabeth Barrett Browning's] "Aurora Leigh" for the first time; asks whether Trevelyan likes it. Will be curious to see Trevelyan's friend [Thomas Sturge Moore]'s poems which he sent to her cousin; wonders whether they will appreciate it; does not think Mrs Grandmont has 'specially classical tastes'. Would be very nice if Trevelyan could come to Ede this summer; unsure still of when exactly would be the best time as she knows nothing of the Grandmonts' plans; thinks probably late August or early September. Is longing to get to fresh air in the country; town seems oppressive after Taormina.

They all feel 'greatly honoured... with all these noble peace delegates' being at the Hague; the Congress was opened yesterday; one of the Dutch members told them 'what a feeble old president Baron de Staal seemed to be' and that 'the first meeting did not promise much'. Is sending some Taormina photographs; the one with Mrs C [Florence Cacciola Trevelyan?] is 'funny but too indistinct'; [Giuseppe] Bruno took the same view which better shows Mrs C. 'like some curious prehistoric Juliet on her balcony'; she has it and will show it to you, or Trevelyan could write to Bruno and ask to see the several pictures he took in her garden of her 'constructions'. Glad Trevelyan has heard some good music in London; she feels out of practice and is looking forward to playing with her sister [Abrahamina Röntgen] again. Knows her aunt is giving her the biography of Joachim by Moser for her birthday. Will also have to 'make special Vondel studies this summer'; feels she knows very little about him.

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