[As usual, for correct and critical edition of this letter, see Mehew 5, 1567.]
To F.W.H. Myers [Colvin 1912, pp. 212-213]
Skerryvore, Bournemouth, March 1st, 1886
My dear Sir,
I know not how to thank you: this is as handsome as it is clever.
With almost every word I agree – much of it I even knew before – much of it, I must confess, would never have been, if I had been able to do what I like, and lay the thing by for the matter of a year.
But the wheels of Byles the Butcher drive exceeding swiftly, and Jekyll was conceived, written, re-written, re-rewritten, and printed inside ten weeks.
Nothing but this white-hot haste would explain the gross error of Hyde’s speech at Lanyon’s.
Your point about the specialised fiend is more subtle, but not less just: I had not seen it.
– About the picture, I rather meant that Hyde had brought it himself; and Utterson’s hypothesis of the gift (p. 42) an error.
– The tidiness of the room, I thought, but I dare say my psychology is here too ingenious to be sound, was due to the dread weariness and horror of the imprisonment. Something has to be done: he would tidy the room. But I dare say it is false.
I shall keep your paper; and if ever my works come to be collected, I will put my back into these suggestions. In the meanwhile, I do truly lack words in which to express my sense of gratitude for the trouble you have taken. The receipt of such a paper is more than a reward for my labours. I have read it with pleasure, and as I say, I hope to use it with profit. – Believe me, your most obliged,
Robert Louis Stevenson