Saturday, 22 August 1863

Rose at 6. Cloudy & gray. ― Wrote Cerigo journals till 8.30 ― very cold at breakfast time.

Letters from P. Williams, & a very nice one from Mrs. Clive. Wrote to both later ― & at 12 ― retreat to room to journalize again. It has been raining more or less ― but duwnstairs, I enjoyed the quiet of the lawn & trees ― tho’ the drawing-room & all that part of the house are odious to me ― as indeed all funished houses are. Wrote till 12.20. ― Strolled in the park by the beautiful avenue ― wh. the F.s don’t seem to care for ― being all day at those wretched Ponds. Lunch ― unavailing to bring one into lively spirits. After which ― as they planned “fishing” & a late drive, ― I set off to walk μοναχῶς.[1] ― through the lovely beech wood above Duncton & onto the down. ― What recollections of every spot below! ― forty “years ago” Bignor, Rackham, Westburton ― Parham ― Amberley ― &c. &c. &c.!!! ―

――― And yet the wiser mind

Grieves less for what Time takes away, than that he leaves behind.[2]

― And there is not very much left behind methinks, for I feel very old. ― I came down to Lavington & back to Burton by 4.30. The afternoon has been sultry & gloomy ― with gleams of sun early, but latterly none. Wrote journals again from 5 to 6.15.

At 6.30 ― went out ― as the F.s had come in, & walked a bit with F. & little Flo ― to the Pond or Lake &c. &c. &c. &c.

Dinner ― 7.30. More lively & agreable ― tho’ it must be owned Mr. Murray is an awful bore. His discussions are frightful.

Played somewhat afterwards ― & sang a little. & sate with T. & W.F. till 11.15.

Wealthy is the conversation of these diggings. They talk of 20 pipes of wine ― investing 25,000 here or there &c. &c. &c.


[1] Alone.

[2] Wordsworth, “The Fountain” (1799).

[Transcribed by Marco Graziosi from Houghton Library, Harvard University, MS Eng. 797.3. Image.]


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