[London—Tuesday, 22 May 1860]

Tuesday 22d Went to the Chrystal Palace with Mr and Mrs Bennett. Two or three hours faded before we were aware among the lovely flowers, the music and fascinating wares of all descriptions best suited to attract unwary strangers. The day was warm as July and the green grass and blossoms never looked to me so lovely as when we sat at the open window of the refreshment hall enjoying a lunch after our wanderings. Our lunch being finished we took a fly for Dulwich stopping by the way for Mrs John Bennett at a pretty flowery cottage by the way. The gallery seemed to me a perfect harbor for the lovely works of Art contained in it. The trees were waving their blossoming branches about the windows, wandering foot-falls fell gently on the soft grass and every sound was full of peace that reached the monumental tomb of these two great men one of whom collected the pictures while the other bequeathed them to the town both desiring to be buried within sight of what they loved so well. Here is Sir Joshua Reynolds great picture of Mrs Siddons as the tragic muse, and Guido’s St. Sebastian also some of Murillo’s finest gems and Mrs Sheridan by Gainsborough not to speak of a Molière which Alice thought looked liked [sic] me and many lovely landscapes. Presently we strolled about the garden snuffing and stealing sweet-briar and afterward we walked gently forward through quiet pretty roads to the house where we saw little Alice in spite of the doctor’s precautions eagerly scampering out to meet us. Then we sat down to have such a nice chat and cosy tea and after a little Mr Bennett came home when we had music and supper when we started for a long walk to the train among the delicious odors of a sweet May night.


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