[London—Friday, 1 July 1859]

Friday July 1st Jamie went away with Hawthorne and Bennoch to an antiquarian dinner at Sir Charles Moon’s a magnificent affair. They examined an old castle in Kent and dined; met “en privee” as the French have it but “on crowned heads” as I would phrase it. Just after Jamie went I had a long long visit perhaps an hour & a half long from Charles Reade. He is most interesting a man of true genius & as much power of self excitement as any body I ever saw indeed I sometimes fear it is too strong in him. It is a most rare failing. We talked much about America and all I said seemed so eagerly swallowed by him each new fact being enough to him for the corner stone of a romance, rather I should say a more correct rendering of truth. Pre-Raphaelitism succeeds eminently in literature & is the glory of this age whatever it may do in painting. Surely it is not given to all to see the hidden glories of our daily life giving joy to him whom Heaven allows to read it clear. Reade seems a man ready to feel and interpret the good that is in the world. We both like him already.

Dined at home after a long 4 hours scamper through the city in a brougham leaving cards & seeing no one but Una Hawthorne. I thought that enough indeed for one afternoon she was so pure and lovely.

Read Tennyson poem “Idylls of the King” filled with intense happiness till J. came.


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