Dear Madam, Carriages to Cambridge are in such request, owing to the Installation, that we have found it impossible to procure a conveyance for Emma before Wednesday, on which day between the hours of 3 and 4 in the afternoon you will see your little friend, with her bloom somewhat impaired by late hours and dissipation, but her gait, gesture, and general manners (I flatter myself) considerably improved by—somebody that shall be nameless. My sister joins me in love to all true Trumpingtonians, not specifying any, to avoid envy; and begs me to assure you that Emma has been a very good girl, which, with certain limitations, I must myself subscribe to. I wish I could cure her of making dog’s ears in books, and pinching them on poor Pompey, who, for one, I dare say, will heartily rejoyce at her departure.
[Addressed to “Miss Humphreys, with Mrs. Paris, Trumpington Street, Cambridge.” Franked by J. Rickman.
This letter contains the first reference in the correspondence to Emma Isola, daughter of Charles Isola, Esquire Bedell of Cambridge University, and granddaughter of Agostino Isola, the Italian critic and teacher, of Cambridge, among whose pupils had been Wordsworth. Miss Humphreys was Emma Isola’s aunt. Emma seems to have been brought to London by Mrs. Paris and left with the Lambs.
Pompey seems to have been the Lamb’s first dog. Later, as we shall see, they adopted Dash.]
CHARLES LAMB TO MRS. WILLIAM AYRTON
[Dated at end: March 15, 1821.]
Dear Madam, We are out of town of necessity till Wednesday next, when we hope to see one of you at least to a rubber. On some future Saturday we shall most gladly accept your kind offer. When I read your delicate little note, I am ashamed of my great staring letters.
Yours most truly
Dalston near Hackney
15 Mar. 1821.
[In my large edition I give a facsimile of this letter.]
CHARLES LAMB TO THOMAS ALLSOP
30 March, 1821.
My dear Sir—If you can come next Sunday we shall be equally glad to see you, but do not trust to any of Martin’s appointments, except on business, in future. He is notoriously faithless in that point, and we did wrong not to have warned you. Leg of Lamb, as before; hot at 4. And the heart of Lamb ever.
Yours truly, C.L.
CHARLES LAMB TO LEIGH HUNT
Indifferent Wednesday [April 18], 1821.
Dear Hunt,—There was a sort of side talk at Mr. Novello’s about our spending Good Friday at Hampstead, but my sister has got so bad a cold, and we both want rest so much, that you shall excuse our putting off the visit some little time longer. Perhaps, after all, you know nothing of it.—