Elderfield, Otterbourne, Winchester.
May 17th 1871

MS Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford.

My dear Miss Wordsworth,
Sometimes one meets with a thing like an echo to one’s own thought (only that one’s thought did not set it going) and your Versailles poem strikes me just in that way. I saw the place on a bright August day in 1869, and it was quite an oppression to me. Those two Trianons both built to escape from the horrible dreary pomp when royalty had made it unbearable told so much, and when I wrote my last book it came before me how cruel its grandeur must have looked to the mob that came howling down it famished.1 It seemed to me that it ought to have been made a place of national repentance if that were possible instead of national self glorification and Sunday dissipation. And how wonderful the retribution has been! I like all your poems greatly. The photograph incident put me in mind of a photo that was sent me from America the fellow to which – of three baby children- was found in the hand of a dead soldier after one of the first battles His name was traced through its means. I shall be very glad to have them all in the M P. I shall be at New College for a few days the week after next, and remember our pleasant meeting there.2 I have thought of it so often since and of our many pleasant talks – I shall take them up again in the same places.

With thanks to the Bishop, and all your party for their kind message.
Yours sincerely
C M Yonge

1Perhaps A Parallel History of France and England.
2They had met there in June 1870, while CMY was the guest of the Warden of New College, the Rev. James Edwards Sewell (1810-1903), and his sister Janetta.

Cite this letter

The Letters of Charlotte Mary Yonge(1823-1901) edited by Charlotte Mitchell, Ellen Jordan and Helen Schinske.

URL to this Letter is: https://c21ch.newcastle.edu.au/yonge/2408/to-elizabeth-wordsworth-2

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