Sunday, 22 January 1865

Rain all night. Morning damp: ― gray ― but fine all day.

A disagreable day. Seeing there would be no going out, I yesterday told G. he had better go to church; he didn’t seem to like it ― saying there were so many fine people &c. ― but finally laughed, & said ― Καλὰ.[1] ―So I breakfasted at 8 ― & said ― now you can go, when you like: & he went. I wrote to Mrs. Scrivens, T. Cooper, & Jane Hunt ― & also did somewhat to Mr. Hankey’s 2 drawings. At 1.30, went to Mr. Lyon’s ― & lunched. Adml. Sir Henry Martin there. My first impressions of Mr. L. ― viz. ― that he requires Toadying ― return. ― Came back again, & sent G. to Villa Sassernò with a note. Wrote till 4.30, when Mr. Hankey called, & I walked with him ― & posted my 3 letters ― returning by 6.15. ― Found three windows more or less open ― & G. bouncing about, & frightfully sulky. Asking him if he were unwell, he only said Καλὰ. After dinner, I penned out, & at 8.30 he came with the account book, but would not read ― saying ― “Lasciamo: è Domenica.”[2] So he went out, but presently came in again, & began ― “Ποτὲ[3] ― ποτὲ ― mai mai più ― mi forzate andare in Chiesa ― ne me domandi niente di se stava a chiesa: vi ho forzato mai di andare in una chiesa non vostra?”[4] (Which rage surprised me ― as he only said this morning ― “there were many people, the Empress & others ― but lots of room: but the service was Russian, & I understood nothing: non vado più.”[5] However, he grew more & more angry ― & said he had been taken here & there, & questioned by various men, & finally put up like “un pezzo di legno”[6] ― & looked at all through the funzione.[7] He was so angry that he spoke Gk. & Italian confusedly, & I could not understand him ― & at last was obliged to say ― “non voglio più di queste parole. Basta. Vai a letto.[”][8] ― & he went.

It has since occurred to me, that being a stranger, they may have thought him a Pole, & have pulled him up & examined him, wh. would have enraged him naturally, tho’ he would not comprehend why they did so. “Chiesa mia?[9] δὲν εἶναι ἑκκλήσια μας!”[10] ― &c. &c.

I feel I ought to make every allowance for a man so far from home: ― but he won’t see that I could not know it was a Russian ― but thought it a Greek church generally.

If one weren’t in such a cleft stick, I turn in my mind if it were not better to send poor Giorgio back to Corfû, good & faithful servant as he has been to me: ― &, giving him a year’s wages, break off his service ― & try to set him up in some other line of life. Per me,[11] ― I would go to Rio Janeiro, or Ceylon, or Spain for 2 or 3 years ― & so change the grooves of life.

Anyhow, Nice is hateful: or as Mrs. Deakin says, hit his really han ateful habõde.


[1] All right.

[2] Let us not: it is Sunday.

[3] Never.

[4] Never more force me to go to church ― nor ask me whether I stayed in the church: have I ever forced you to go to a church which is not yours?

[5] I will not go again.

[6] A piece of wood.

[7] Service.

[8] I don’t want to hear such language. Stop it. Go to bed.

[9] My church?

[10] It is not our church!

[11] As for me.

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


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Filed under 1865, Diary Entry

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