[Venice—Saturday, 23 November 1889]

Too thick a fog for Lido.

Dr Bird, whom Mrs. Eden brought to hear me read at your house– I remembered him fifty years ago. I used to see him first at—Chapel (Fulham) but we did not know each other– He became one of my ‘admirers’– Mr Browning yesty talked of the treatment wh. he had met from Mr James T. Fields, of which he has spoken before. He wished to print an edition of Mrs. Browning’s works, for which right he offered to pay—and Mr. B. assented. A previous edition of Aurora Leigh was preceded by an acknowledget of remuneration sufficient. Mr. Fields printed Aurora Leigh and all her works—preceding the whole by a copy of this acknowledgment (as if it applied to the whole)[.] And when an agent of Fields called on R.B. who mentioned that they had paid him nothing, the agent referred him to the acknowledgt that a sufficient remuneration had been received by him!—And Mr Browning never got any payment whatever from Fields for Mrs. B’s poems.

A newspaper Editor, however, offered £100 if Mr B. wd approve his printg in his paper, and did so. Gave to a subs for the French in 1871.

When Browning arrived in Florence, Mr Kirkup said ‘You are a bold man.’ Why? ‘The climate of Florence is the worst in Italy.’—Philipson, the banker, was an honest man. Horatio Greenough was very angry because Philipson would not travel for two years thro’ the United States, exhibiting a statue of a family attacked by Indians.

Mrs Browning—at Rome—V. Bocca di Leone—always to bed 8.30. Came Ld Odo Russell—must speak with her—and thro’ crack told that Grand Duke was cacciato from Florence. (Ferdinando—to whom shown the portraits of Mr & Mrs B. in the new Eds—He does not find them like–)

Mrs Browning wrote her last poem for Hans Anderson, who wrote for her a poem in Danish, wh. RB gave to the Princess of Wales thro’ Lady de Grey. A child’s party at Pal. Barberini, Anderson read ‘The Ugly Duckling.’ RB read the Pied Piper of Hamelin, whom Story personated, followed by all the children.–

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