letters from dickinson to elizabeth holland

Thomas Johnson's Note on Letter 806

MANUSCRIPT: HCL (H 78). Pencil.


Two items had been received since the preceding letter. The "Birds" evidently was the picture of the Holland girls, showing them with their heads tilted together which, ED having sent back, was returned to her attention the correct spelling of Van Wagenen. Annie and her husband John Howe were about to sail for Europe. A portion of the first draft of this letter also survives (AC):

The Birds preceded the reprimand, which modified its chastening - by some divine contingency that strayed to Austin's Box (and till fortified by Birds we) which deferred its rancor till flanked by the Birds we had grown impervious - Orthography always baffled me, and to (for) Ns I had a peculiar aversion, they seeming to me imperfect M's - Will Dear Mrs Van Wagenen excuse me for taking her portentous name in vain - I heard a Clergyman

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Commentary copyright 1998 by Martha Nell Smith, all rights reserved
Maintained by Lara Vetter <lv26@umail.umd.edu>
Last updated on January 17, 1999