August-December 1842

The Collected Letters, Volume 15


JWC TO ANNA BROWNELL JAMESON ; 7 October 1842; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18421007-JWC-ABJ-01; CL 15: 118-120


Friday 7th [October 1842]

My dear Mrs Jameson

The five pounds has been more adventurous than we thought—it is off to Nuova Scotia in quest of Marrioti!1 left London on the 13 of August on what one may call a fool's errand! Mariotti huffed at Gambardella's want of Pylades-like2 empressment in writing to him had instructed Count Pepoli to get from the said Gambardella—“every paper for him which should find itself in G's possession and forward them to his new address”— Of course Gambardella gave him Lady Byron's letter3 containing the five pounds, suggesting however that perhaps it were more rational to send it back to Lady Byron direct, than via nuova scotia— But Pepoli, as his wife phrases it, “rides on the rigging”—which means—in case you do not know—would do every thing perfectly and a little more than perfectly—and so he insisted on adhereing literally to Mariotti's directions— All the sense his wife could put into his head about it, was that he should send money thro' a Banker's order that in case of its being no more heard of he might not be suspected of having been trying his hand at a little swindling!

All this was communicated to me this morning before I was out of bed!—to be sure I did not rise till one oclock having got a heavy cold— Gambardella who was here by half after nine (!) to answer in person a note I had sent him last night, did not exactly penetrate to my bedroom, but left a message with my cousin, and Madame Pepoli came soon after to tell me that G. had been there at half after eight, to make Pepoli give him a receipt for the money, to give to me, to give to you, to give to lady Byron!—indeed the whole transaction has gone on thro' out very much on the principle of the house that Jack built!

I am glad however that Gambardella whom I really think well of is exonerated of the charge of—unpunctuality—to speak mildly— The thing wore a very awkward appearance to me, and I take credit to myself for having cleared it up for him without giving any offence—or at least very little—to his pride which is equal to Lucifer's— The Italian school4 at all events may heave a sigh!— Five pounds would have been such a godsend to it struggling as it is at this moment with that horrid thing a deficit! I shall keep the receipt till I see you or am surer of your address5— Perhaps by this time you are sitting beside Harriet at Tynemouth6—tanto meglio per voi [so much the better for you]!

Ever affectionately yours

Jane Carlyle