MY DEAR LADY HAMILTON,
Your friend’s godson arrived safe yesterday afternoon; and I shall, you know, always feel too happy in obeying your commands: for, you never ask favours, but for your friends.
In short, in every point of view, from Ambassatrice to the duties of domestic life, I never saw your equal!
That elegance of manners; accomplishments; and, above all, your goodness of heart, is unparalleled: and only believe, for ever, and beyond it, your faithful and devoted
NELSON & BRONTE.
Victory, August 24th, 1803.
[N.B. The Mysterious Letter appears to have been inclosed in this Packet.]
August 26th, 1803.
Wrote several days past.
MY DEAREST EMMA,
By the Canopus, Admiral Campbell, I have received all your truly kind and affectionate letters, from May 20th to July 3d; with the exception of one, dated May 31st, sent to Naples.
This is the first communication I have had with England since we sailed.
All your letters, my dear letters, are so entertaining! and which paint so clearly what you are after, that they give me either the greatest pleasure or pain. It is the next best thing, to being with you.
I only desire, my dearest Emma, that you will always believe, that Nelson’s your own; Nelson’s Alpha and Omega is Emma! I cannot alter; my affection and love is beyond even this world! Nothing can shake it, but yourself; and that, I will not allow myself to think, for a moment, is possible.
I feel, that you are the real friend of my bosom, and dearer to me than life; and, that I am the same to you. But, I will neither have P.’s nor Q.’s come near you! No; not the slice of Single Gloster! But, if I was to go on, it would argue that want of confidence which would be injurious to your honour.
I rejoice that you have had so pleasant a trip into Norfolk; and I hope, one day, to carry you there by a nearer tie in law, but not in love and affection, than at present.
I wish, you would never mention that person’s name! It works up your anger, for no useful purpose. Her good or bad character, of me or thee, no one cares about.
This letter will find you at dear Merton; where we shall one day meet, and be truly happy.
I do not think it can be a long war; and, I believe, it will be much shorter than people expect: and I shall hope to find the new room built; the grounds laid out, neatly but not expensively; new Piccadilly gates; kitchen garden; &c. Only let us have a plan, and then all will go on well. It will be a great source of amusement to you; and Horatia shall plant a tree. I dare say, she will be very busy. Mrs. Nelson, or Mrs. Bolton, &c. will be with you; and time will pass away, till I have the inexpressible happiness of arriving at Merton. Even the thought of it vibrates through my nerves; for, my love for you is as unbounded as the ocean!