October 10, 1890.

MS location unknown. Printed in Coleridge, Life 321

My dear Florence
I am very glad to hear of you again, and I hope the touch of frost will not be felt at Bournemouth; it has spared all our flowers as yet. I waited to write because Christabel was coming to make up our plans for the new volume. We will try to put in ‘Purification’ poem for February, but I am afraid poems do not get much payment. I wish I could put more work in her way. 1 I forget whether you know Miss Hill, who stays with the Jones Batemans sometimes; she is lame from old hip complaint, but gets about on her crutches. She is sister to Mr. Rowland Hill. I am afraid the Newbery Magazine is a tardy affair, as all magazines are, unless they begin by being hard-hearted and summary. I don’t much like what I have seen of it. Christabel asks to be remembered to you. She is my original old Gosling, and she and I have been going over our old brood, and what a remarkable set they have been, for good, and alas! sometimes for the reverse, but there are a good many that I am proud of.2

I am hurried and must finish.

Your affectionate
C. M. Yonge

1Her correspondent’s sister Emma Wilford (b. 1832/3), as appears from the next letter to Florence Wilford (18 October 1890). They lived together in Bournemouth. A poem ‘The Treasures of the Snow: Feast of the Purification’, signed ‘W.’ appeared in MP (February 1891). The feast of the Purification is 2 February, and this may well be Emma Wilford’s poem.
2The Goslings who had been remarkable for the reverse were probably Mary Arnold and Mildred Coleridge. The former had, as Mrs Humphry Ward, become the author of the notorious novel Robert Elsmere (1888), about an Anglican clergyman's loss of faith; the latter, who was a cousin of CMY's, fell in love with the unsuitable Charles Warren Adams, and after a series of acrimonious libel suits brought by him against her father and brother, married him in 1885 in a blaze of publicity, causing a family quarrel which was never made up. Another backslider was probably Katie Johns, who seems to have parted from her husband and become a theosophist.

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/3164/to-florence-wilford-6

Leave a comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.