in a street not very far from our own. It being dusk, I could not see the exterior, which, if I remember, Browning has celebrated in song; at all events,

Mrs. Browning has called one of her poems. Casa Guidi Windows.' “ The street is a narrow one ; but on entering the palace we found a spacious stair

case and ample accommodations of vestibule and hall, the latter opening on a balcony, where we could hear the chanting of priests in a church close by. Browning told us that this was the first church where an oratorio had ever been performed. He came into the ante-room to greet us, as did his little boy [then 94] Robert, whom they call . Pennini' [later, ‘Pen '] for fondness. The latter cognomen is a diminutive of Apennino, which was bestowed upon him at his first advent into the world because he was so very small, there being a statue in Florence of colossal size called 'Apennino.', He was born in Florence, and prides himself on being a Florentine, and is indeed as un-English a production

as if he were native of another planet. “Mrs. Browning met us at the door of the drawing-room, and greeted us most

kindly--a pale, small person, scarcely embodiel at all ; at any rate, only (p. 12] substantial enough to put forth her slender fingers to be grasped, and to speak with a shrill, yet sweet, tenuity of voice. Really, I do not see how Mr. Browning can suppose that he has an earthly wife any more than an earthly child ; both are of the elfin race, and will flit away from him some day when he least thinks of it. She is a good and kind fairy, however, and sweetly disposed towards the human race, though only remotely akin to it. It is wonderful to see how small she is, how pale her cheek, how bright and dark her eyes. There is not such another figure in the world ; and her black ringlets cluster down into her neck, and make her face look the whiter by their sable profusion. I could not form any judgment about her age [49] ; it may range anywhere within the limits of human life or elfin life. When I met her at London at Lord Houghton's breakfast-table she did not impress me so singularly ; for the morning light is more prosaic than the dim illumination of their great tapestried drawirg-room ; and besides, sitting next to her, she did not have occasion to raise her voice in speaking, and I was not sensible what a slender voice she has. It is marvellous to see how so extraordinary, so acute, so sensitive a creature can impress us, as she does [p. 13), with the certainty of her benevolence. It seems to me there were a million chances to one that she would have been a miracle of acidity and bitterness.

not the only guests. .. Mr. Browning was very efficient in keeping up conversation with everybody, and seemed to be in all parts of the room, and in every group at the same moment; a most vivid and quick-thoughted person - logical and common-sensible, as, presume, poets generally are in their daily

talk. We had soine tea and strawberries, and passed a pleasant evening. There was no

very noteworthy conversation ; the most interesting topic (p. 14) being that disagreeable and now wearisome one of spiritual communications, as regards which, Mrs. Browning is a believer, and her husband an infidel... Browning and his wife had both been present at a spiritual session held by Mr. Hume, and had seen and felt the unearthly hands, one of which had placed a laurel wreath on Mrs. Browning's head. Browning, however, avowed his belief that those hands were affixed to the feet of Mr. Hume, who lay extended in his chair, with his legs far under the table. marvellousness of the fact, as I have read of it, and heard it from other eye-witnesses, melted strangely away in his hearty gripe, and at the sharp touch of his logic (cp. Mr. Sludge the Medium]; while his wife, ever and anon, put in a little gentle word of expostulation. I am rather surprised that Browning's conversation should be so clear, and so much to the purpose at the moment, since his poetry can seldom proceed far

without running into the high grass of latent meanings and obscure allusions. “Mrs. Browning's health does not permit late hours, so we began to take leave

about ten o'clock. (p. 15). “Little Pennini, during the evening, sometimes helped the guests to cake

and strawberries ; joined in the conversation, when he had anything to say, or sat down upon a couch to enjoy his own meditations. He has long curling hair, and has not yet emerged from his frock and short hose. It is funny to

" We wer


think (p. 16) of putting him into trousers. His likeness to his mother is strange

to behold." ii. 365. 1860. London, May 17th (from a Letter). . . "To-day I met at break

fast Mr. Field Talfourd, who promises (p. 366) to send you the photograph of

his portrait of Mr. Browning.' June 27 ... (p. 66). Last evening we went to pass the evening with Miss

Blagdden (p. 111 above, 1873] who inhabits a villa at Bellosguardo, about a mile outside the walls (p. 67). By-and-by came Mr. Browning, Mr.

Trollope .. Browning was very genial and full of life, as usual, but his conversation has

the effervescent aroma which you cannot catch even if you get the very words that seem to be imbued with it. He spoke most rapturously of a portrait of Mrs. Browning, which an Italian artist is painting for the wife of an American gentleman, as a present from her husband. The success was already perfect, although there had been only two sittings as yet, and both on the same day; and in this relation, Mr. Browning remarked that P-- the American artist, had had no less than seventy-three sittings of him for a portrait. In the result, every hair and speck of him was represented ; yet, as I inferred from what he did not say, this accumulation of minute truths did not, after all, amount to

the true whole. I do not remember much else that Br. said, except a playful abuse of a little

King Charles spaniel, named Frolic, Miss Blagden's lap-dog, whose venerable age (he is eleven years old) ought to have pleaded in his behalf. Browning's nonsense is of very genuine and excellent quality, the true babble and effervescence of a bright and powerful mind; and he lets it play among his friends with the faith and simplicity of a child. He must be an amiable man. I should like him much, and should make him like me, if opportunities were

favourable. p. 97., July 8th. On the 6th we went to the church of the Annunziata,

which stands in the piazza of the same name. On the corner of the Via dei Servi is the palace which I suppose to be the one that Browning makes the scene of his poem The Statue and the Bust [no. 73), and the statue of Duke Ferdinand sits stately on horseback, with his face turned towards the window, where the lady ought to appear. Neither she nor the bust, however, was

visible, at least not to my eyes. [The Bust was Browning's invention.] 1866. Kate Field, in the 'Atlantic Monthly,' May, 1866, vol. 17, ‘Last Days of

Walter Savage Landor,' has 3 notices of Browning :

p. 543. At the time a subscription was opened in Florence to aid Garibaldi's Sicilian expedition, Landor, [poor, but] anxious to lay an offering at the feet (p. 544) of his heart's hero, pulled out his watch, the only article of value about him, and begged Mr. Browning to present it to the fund. Mr. Browning took it; but knowing how lost the old man would be without his timepiece, kept it for a few days; and then, seizing a favourable moment when Landor was missing his watch greatly, though without murmuring, Mr. B. persuaded him to retain it. This he did, with reluctance, after being assured of the fund's prosperous condition.

p. 693. Landor had an inherent objection to having his likeness taken either by man or the sun. Not long before the artist's visit, Mr. Browning had persuaded him to sit for his photograph ; but no less a person could have induced the old man to mount the numberless steps which seem to be a necessary condition of photography. This sitting was most satisfactory: and to Mr. Browning's zealous friendship is due the likeness by which the octogenarian (p. 694) Landor will probably be known to the world.

p. 695. Apropos of old songs, Landor has laid his offering upon their neg. lected altar. " I shall not forget that evening at Casa Guidi--- I can forget no evening passed there---when, just as the tea was being placed upon the table, Robert Browning turned to Landor, who was that night's honored guest, grace

fully thanked him for his defence of old songs, and opening the · Last Fruit' 1 After the wife's death, the husband sent the picture to Browning, and it now hangs in his dining-room.



[one of his latest works), read in his clear manly voice the following passages
from the Idyls of Theocritus : “We often hear that such and such a thing ‘is
not worth an old song.' Alas! how very few things are! What precious recol-
lections do some of them awaken! what pleasurable tears do they excite!”.
“Ah, you are kind,” replied the gratified author. “You always find out the
best bits in my books.' I have never seen anything of its kind so chivalric as
the deference paid by Robert Browning to Walter Savage Landor. It was loyal
homage rendered by a poet in all the glow of power and impulsive magnetism

to an “old master.” (Mr. J. Dykes Campbell kindly gave me the references.) 1867. March 1. Bp. Thirlwall, in ‘Letters to a friend,' 1881, ii. p. 98-9.

of the persons I met last night was the poet Browning. I was amused to find that he has a pet owl, who is inseparable from him. He gave a very entertaining description of his struggles to reach his own house after dining out on the night when every street in London was a sheet of the smoothest ice, and only

four cabs, as the drivers asserted, in circulation.” 1881. 'Landor,' by Sidney Colvin, M.A. Macmillan and Co., (one of Jn. Morley's

'English Men of Letters.') p. vi. “To Mr. Robert Browning in particular my thanks are due for his great kindness in allowing me to make use of the collection of books and manuscripts left him by Landor, including Landor's own annotated copies of some of his rarest writings, and a considerable body of his occasional jottings and correspondence.” See too p. 4, p. 187-8, p. 209, foi how Landor, when he left his family, went to Browning, and how the latter got him an allowance from his brothers and cared for him : “To Mr. Br.'s respectful and judicious guidance, Landor showed himself docile from the first’

* The death of Mrs. Br. in 1861, and her husband's consequent departure for England, took away from him (L.) his best friends of all.” p. 214, 216.

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p. 211.

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p. 24; no. 16, p. 45. Mr. Alfred Domett tells me that he recollects this picture well. He says that it represented the ‘Bridge of Sighs,' with a deep-blue sky backing the white arch, and that Browning's lines were printed in the Catalog of the Gallery where the picture appeard.

As to the sizes of Br.'s books,-Strafford appeard in 1837 in demy 8vo., as noted on p. 41.

p. 25. Mr. James Thomson would put Men and Women into Browning's Third Period. I still can't, tho no doubt Br. culminated in characterization in that Second-Period work, as Shakspere did in his Second-Period Henry IV. But Dramatis Persona and the Ring and the Book are greater than Men and Women, as Hamlet is greater than Henry IV.

It is Br.'s early Fourth-Period books that have set so many folk unreazonably against him : Schwangau, Fifine, Red Cotton, Inn Album, and Pacchiarotto ; while Aristophanes' Apology has fail'd to hold some of those whom Balaustion won.

To the E. B. B. poems add the Prolog and Epilog to (154) 'The two Poets of Croisic.'

p. 37. (2) Pauline was surely written under the influence of Keats, who came after Byron, in Br.'s reading. See Mr. Gosse's article in Scribner's Century, Dec. 1881, p. 148 abuv.

p. 38. Paracelsus. Mr. F. D. Matthew_sends me the inscription on his tomb :Conditur hic Philippus Theophrastus Insignis Medecine Doctor Qui Dira illa Vulnera, Lepram, Podagram, Hydroposim, aliaque insanabilia corporis contagia mirifica arte sustulit ac bona sua in pauperes distribuenda collocandaque honeravit Anno MDXXXXI Die XXIIII Septembris vitam cum morte mutavit [Coat of Arms] Pax vivis Requies eterna sepultis. (The honeravit is for honoravit. Honorare. -In honorem seu feudum concedere ; donner en fief. (A.D. 1261.) --Muneribus seu beneficiis prosequi ; combler de présents ou de bienfaits." (A.D. 1228.)”—D'Arnis.)

P. 31.

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* And now ...

p. 42. (6) Sordello. The story illustrates what Br. so often enforces elsewhere, that by failures a man gains. Sordello's throwing away his laureateship was a step forward in his soul's growth ; and his trampling under foot the imperial badge, made his death more glorious for his spirit than a triumphant career as an earthly ruler could have let his life be. Mr. Conway's Discourse on this poem was excellent.

p. 43. (7) In the reprint of Pippa Passes, the 8th line of Pippa's Hymn in the Proem has a wrong than for a right that in it. Readers should correct the mistake in their books, and have “ Costs it more pain that this ...” Mr. Lowell says there are many more misprints throughout B.'s works. The American edition is still worse : see Mr. F. May Holland's prose story of Sordello, 1880.

p. 45 (no. 13). Note the splendidly vivid picture of Gismond dashing his fist into his liar-opponent's mouth.

p. 45 (no. 18). “What's become of Waring ?” Why, he “'s become” a VicePresident and Member of the Browning Society.

p. 45. (20) Cristina. This was meant for a young man who fell in love with Queen Cristina of Spain, and went mad. Powell's assertion in the Notes, p. 114, abuv, as to Queen Victoria, is false.

p. 45, 113. (22) The Pied Piper. I believe the earliest English authority for the story of the Pied Piper is Richard Verstegan, in his Restitution of Decayed Intelligence (1605). On pp. 85-87 he tells how the Emperor Charles the Great had "great & trooblesome warres with the Saxons," and transported a great number of them into Transylvania, where they kept their Saxon language, and were vnto this day called by the name of Sassons.”

beeing by reason of speaking of these Saxons of Transiluania put in mynd of a most true & maruelous strange accedent that hapned in Saxonie not many ages past, I cannot omit, for the strangenes thereof, briefly heer by the way to set it down. There came into the town of Hamel in the countrey of Brunswyc an od kynd of compagnion, who for the fantastical cote which hee wore, beeing wrought with sundry colours, was called the pyed pyper; for a pyper The pyed hee was, besydes his other qualities. This fellow forsooth offred the towns- Pyper. men for a certain somme of mony to rid the town of all the rattes that were in it (for at that tyme the burgers were with that vermin greatly annoyed). The accord in fyne beeing made; the pyed pyper with a shril pype went pyping through the streets, and foorth with the rattes came all running out of the howses in great numbers after him ; all which hee led vnto the riuer of Weaser, and therein drowned them. This donne, and no one rat more perceaued to bee left in the town; he afterward came to demaund his reward according to his bargain, but beeing told that the bargain was not made with him in good earnest, to wit, with an opinion that euer hee could bee able to do such a fcat : they cared not what they accorded vnto, when they imagyned it could neuer bee deserued, and so neuer to bee demaunded : but neuerthelesse seeing hee had donne such an vnlykely thing in deed, they were content to giue him a good reward ; & so offred him far lesse then hee lookt for : but hee therewith discontented, said he would haue his ful recompence (p. 86) according to his bargain ; but they vtterly denying to giue it him, hee threatened them with reuenge; they bad him do his wurst; wherevpon he betakes him again to his pype, & going through the streets as before, was followed of a number of boyes out at one of the gates of the citie ; and coming to a litle hil, there opened in the syde thereof a wyde hole, into the which himself and all the children, beeing in number one hundreth & thirty, did enter; and transporting beeing entred, the hil closed vp again, and became as before. A boy away, of 130 that beeing lame & came somwhat lagging behynd the rest, seeing this that hapned, returned presently back & told what hee had seen; foorthwith began great lamentation among the parents for their children, and men were sent out with all dilligence, both by land & hy water to enquyre yf ought could bee heard of them, but with all the enquyrie they could possibly vse, nothing more then is aforesaid could of them bec vnderstood. In memorie whereof it was then ordayned, that from thencefoorth no drum, pype, or other instrument, should bee sounded in the street leading to the gate through which they passed ; nor no osterie to bee there holden. And it was also established, that from that tyme forward, in all publyke wrytings that should bee made in that town, after the date therein set down of the

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yeare of our Lord, the date of the yeare of the going foorth of their children should bee added, the which they haue accordingly euer since continued. And this great wonder hapned on the 22. day of July, in the yeare of our Lord one thowsand three hundreth seauentie, and six.

“The occasion now why this matter came vnto [p. 87] my remembrance in speaking of Transiluania, was, for that some do reporte that there are diuers found among the Saxons in Transiluania that haue lyke surnames ynto divers of the burgers of Hamel, and wil seem thereby to inferr, that this iugler or pyed pyper, might by negromancie haue transported them thether ; but this carieth litle apparence of truthe ; because it would haue bin almost as great a wonder vnto the Saxons of Transiluania to haue had so many strange children brought among them, they knew not how, as it was to those of Hamel to lose them : & they could not but haue kept memorie of so strange a thing, yf in deed any such thing had there hapned.”

Verstegan, then, is nearer Browning's story than Howel, tho the poet had never seen V. before his poem was written. He got the story from North Wanley's Wonders of the Little World (fol. 1678) and the authorities there cited. In the new edition of Wanley, 1774, the tale is told shortly at p. 632, col. 2, and the authorities quoted, are Wier. de prestig. Dæmon. li. 1, c. 16, p. 47: Schot. phys. curios. li. 3, c. 24, p. 519 : Howel's Ep. vol. 1, § 6, epist. 59, p. 241. The brothers Grimm, in their Deutsche Sagen (1816, i. 330-33), tell the tale, and.give nine authorities for it besides Verstegan. They date it—as the town inscription does—1284, and say that Seyfried (Medulla, p. 476) states the day is June 22, not July 26, in the town book. They also give the inscription on the Rath-baus (isn't Rath spelt Rat now ?) and on the new gate, and say that in 1572 the story was painted on the church windows, with an inscription underneath that had since become illegible. Friends tell me that the story is also in Heylin's Microcosmos—from Verstegan-in Thorpe's Northern Mythology, iii. 119, 120, and in Chambers's Book of Days, and that in the 1876 edition of Burton's Anatomy of Melancholy (p. 128) the sad event is said to have happened on 20 June 1484.” Such is history!

The story-rats being turned into mice—is notist by Addison in his paper on the Opera, 'Spectator,' No. 5, March 6, 1711, p. 13, col. 1, ed. Morley (W. G. Stone); and a like tale is told of Newtown, Isle of Wight, in 'Legends of the Isle of Wight,' illustrated by G. Cruikshank (A. J. Munby, author of the delightful poem 'Dorothy ').

p. 45-6 (no. 23, 24). As instances of Browning's quickness in work I may say that he wrote The Return of the Druses in 5 days—an act a day—as well as The Blot in the 'Scutcheon in a like time; and that he wrote (55) Love among the Ruins, (90) Women and Roses, and (70) Childe Roland in three successive days, 1, 2 & 3, January 1852.

There is no historic foundation for (50) Luria, or (25) Colombe's Birthday, or (23) the Druses, except that Druses do live in Lebanon, and have initiated and uninitiated folk, and that among them was a Mansur, as Browning found out after he had written the play. Note that Pippa, The Blot, Colombe, In a Balcony, Luria, and the Druses observe the classical unity of time: the events of each happen in one day.

p. 48. (32) The Tomb that the Bishop orderd at St. Praxed's was of course an imaginary one, as well as the Bishop himself; but an American visitor lately at the Church, having given a special tip to be shown this Bishop's tomb, it was forthwith pointed out to him by the attendant. (This fact illustrates the many identifications of sites &c., in Jerusalem and the Holy Land.)

p. 50. (46) Note the admirable sea- and land- scape of it. p. 53. (60) The picture that Fra Lippo was to paint, with the “sweet angelic slip of a thing” &c., lines 347-377, is in the Academia delle Belle Arti at Florence. There is babe ” in the picture. On the Prior's niece,' l. 387, compare W. S.

See also Notes and Queries, Series III. 2. Two copies of the fotograf of it will be sent to every Member of the Society. A riband with Iste perfecit Opis (1. 377 of the poem) runs from the Angel within the bar, to Fra Lippo without.

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