Correspondence

1933.  EBB to RB

As published in The Brownings’ Correspondence, 10, 247–248.

[London]

Friday morning. [Postmark: 30 May 1845]

Just one word to say that if saturday, tomorrow, shd be fine—because in the case of its raining I shall not expect you,—you will find me at three oclock–

Yes—the circumstances of the costume were mentioned in the letter,—Mr Rogers’s bagwig & the rest, & David Wilkie’s sword!—& also that the Laureate, so equipped, fell down upon both knees in the superfluity of etiquette, & had to be picked up by two lords in waiting.[1] It is a large exaggeration I do not doubt—and then I never sympathized with the sighing kept up by people about that acceptance of the Laureateship which drew the bagwig as a corollary after it. Not that the Laureateship honored him, but that he honored it; & that, so honoring it, he preserves a symbol instructive to the masses, who are children & to be taught by symbols now as formerly. Is’nt it true? or at least may it not be true? And wont the court laurel (such as it is) be all the worthier of you for Wordsworth’s having worn it first?

And in the meantime I shall see you tomorrow perhaps? or if it shd rain, on monday at the same hour?

Ever yours my dear friend

EBB–

Address: Robert Browning Esqre / New Cross / Hatcham / Surrey.

Postmark: 8NT8 MY30 1845.

Dockets, in RB’s hand: 18.; + Saturday May 31. / 3–5 p.m. [2]; + Thursday June 5. / 3–4½. [3].

Publication: RB-EBB, p. 84.

Manuscript: Wellesley College.

1. See letter 1930.

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