Monthly Archives: December 2015

Art is a virtue; and if I were the man I should be, my art would rise in the proportion of my life

[As usual, dots between square brackets indicate cuts made by Sidney Colvin. For full, correct and critical edition of this letter, see Mehew 4, 1172.] To Will H. Low [Colvin 1911, 2, pp. 170-172] La Solitude, Hyères [Postmark 27 October … Continue reading

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We were all in a buck basket about halfway between the swing and the gate

RLS’s cousin, Henrietta Traquair (1850-1902), had been reading Penny Whistles (‘family’ edition of “A Child’s Garden of Verses”) and recognised herself and her brother Willie in the poem ‘A Pirate Story’. Henrietta lived in Colinton Road, Edinburgh, and had married … Continue reading

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We are here not to make, but to tread predestined pathways; we are the foam of a wave

[As usual, dots between square brackets indicate cuts made by Sidney Colvin. For full, correct and critical edition of this letter, see Mehew 4, 1159.] To his father [Colvin 1911, 2, pp. 175-177] La Solitude, Hyères, 12th October 1883 My … Continue reading

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A great variety of small ships launched or still upon the stocks

Of the ‘small ships’ here mentioned, A Misadventure in France was probably a draft of the Epilogue to an Inland Voyage, not published till five years later in Scribner’s for Aug 1888, while The Travelling Companion (of which Colvin remembered … Continue reading

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There is but one art — to omit! O if I knew how to omit, I would ask no other knowledge

[As usual, dots between square brackets indicate cuts made by Sidney Colvin. For full, correct and critical edition of this letter, see Mehew 4,1148.] To Bob Stevenson [Colvin 1911, 2, pp. 172-175] La Sotitude, Hyères [? 30 October 1883] My … Continue reading

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Our little lives are moments in the wake of the eternal silence: but how crowded while they last

In memory of one of the oldest and most intimate of his friends of Edinburgh days, James Walter Ferrier, who died of alcoholism three weeks before, at the same age as RLS, 33. The reference to a Mrs. Leslie is … Continue reading

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A certain warmth (tepid enough) and a certain dash of the picturesque are my poor essential qualities

[As usual, dots between square brackets indicate cuts made by Sidney Colvin. For full, correct and critical edition of this letter, see Mehew 4, 1143.] To Edmund Gosse [Colvin 1911, 2, pp. 161-162] La Solitude, Hyères, 26th September 1883 My … Continue reading

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