[Rome—Wednesday, 22 February 1860]

Wednesday. Lovely day. Drove with the Wales on the Campagna. Jamie and I waked up at night to find we had both been dreaming of Dickens. He had been with him to visit a school and Dickens continually made the boys laugh, till at last the teacher was obliged to dismiss them with a prayer wh. Dickens interrupted with the (apparently) convulsing words, Fontana Boreana. I, on the contrary had been forced to pass the evening with Uriah Heep. I turned supplicatingly to ask Jamie how such creatures were allowed to exist in the world? He answered me, They are abortions of Nature, and, like the hen, are the result of long imprisoned misery.


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