Item 52 - Letter from Elizabeth des Amorie van der Hoeven to R. C. Trevelyan

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


  • 25 Apr - 26 Apr [1900] (Creation)

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The Hague. - Agrees with Bob that he should not come over till mid-May, and does not think her uncle seriously wishes him to come earlier; does not understand why he is having friends to stay and going visiting again if he wants to get some more work done, but is glad he is going to see them. Thinks there will be plenty of time for business or visiting; they might go to Utrecht, Amsterdam and Rotterdam, and would love to go with him to Heerde in Gelderland where her sister [Henriette] lives; will have to go there to see the children and her husband the doctor before she leaves, though her sister is probably coming to the wedding. Does not know where Bob left the bed catalogue; thinks she remembers seeing it last in Charles's room at Grosvenor Crescent; asks if they can order a softer mattress. Will measure her Dutch pillowcases tomorrow and send him the measurements; further discussion of fittings and furniture, and arrangements for packing and unpacking her things. Bob should ask his mother about what tie he should wear with his frock coat; Dutch husbands always wear white tie with their evening dress; thinks blue or green suit him if he is to choose a coloured tie. If the patent boots he wore to Roger [Fry]'s wedding are still good he can wear them again. Hopes he will soon hear from Mrs Pepper; 'what a name for a honeymoon lady!!'. Spent two nights at Almelo which were enjoyable but so hot she had difficulty sleeping; Jeanne [Salamonson Asser] very kindly tried to 'read her to sleep out of "Pilgrim's Progress"'. Then went to Amsterdam, where she helped Mien [Röntgen] arrange the flowers and table, before they went to the [Joachim] concert which was 'delightful beyond words'; they did a Haydn, Brahms and a Beethoven quartet. Then they returned for the supper party, at which '[Bob's] friend young Harold Joachim, the Oxford fellow' was present; he sat next to her at supper and seems a 'very nice fellow'; they had met once before at St Andrews when she thought him 'a strange odd person & was in great awe of him'. Thinks Harold wants her and Bob to come and see them at Haslemere when 'Uncle Jo' is staying with them; Bessie was at school with his sister. Tomorrow the quartet are in the Hague, and Harold is crossing by night so she has invited him to lunch. When healths were being drunk at the end of the meal and she went up to Joachim to touch glasses, he at once proposed 'Ihr Bräutigam' ['Your bridegroom']; he remembered that Bob's father had once taken him home in his carriage. On Tuesday she went to see her 'socialist sister [Theodora] and her husband [Herman Heijenbrock]' on their farm and enjoyed her day with them more than she had expected to; they are very happy together and she admires their convictions though they do not convince her.

Returns to the letter next day, before going to meet [Alice and Herbert] Jones. Is sure Bob would be 'amused' to meet the socialist couple, but he [Heijenbrock] does not know English so it would be no good. Then went to stay with the aunt who lives nearby; she is not a 'favourite' in their house and they do not see her often, but several of her sisters see her often; the aunt was very friendly but it is never pleasant to be there. Fortunately her daughter, Bessie's cousin, was also there. Found her uncle and aunt fairly well when she returned, but the house is in 'a horrible state' due to the repainting, and they both have a slight cold. Went to the station to meet the Jones and they did not appear; English visitors 'always change their plans at the last minute or miss trains... or don't wire in time' as is the case for the Joneses, who are now coming tomorrow. [Harold] Joachim also cannot come to lunch and is calling in the afternoon. [Joseph] Joachim is staying tonight with Mr [Nicolaas] Pierson, the Finance Minister, and his wife, who has invited Bessie to a select party this evening. Is going to the concert tomorrow night with Alice Jones; the Röntgens may also come. The cellist [Robert] Hausmann is 'a charming person, so refined and artistic'; talked to him the other night and he admired Bob's ring. Bob will get this letter when he comes up to London to see his father. She thinks he should bring any work she has not seen on their honeymoon, as they might not have much quiet time before the wedding. Understands that his 'literary ambition is not connected with [his] love' and thinks this is right. Last half page with pillowcase measurements.

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