My dear Henry,
We are very much obliged to you for your letter & advice but as is usual on such occasions, I believe we shall not follow it, the fact is that we shall return by the Perugia road as far Foglino [sic] in the way to Ancona or indeed it is not improbable we may return here so that either way we shall se the most beautiful part of the road & I rather wish to see Siena. I believe we shall go by the Post but I do not agree with you exactly in liking it better than by Voiture[s?] for if I see a plant I want I have to hollow [sic] for half an hour before they will stop the trouble of which stops my botanic ardour amazingly –I was excessively sorry that you had left Florence before we arrived for I expected to have been so much fêted & petted, as it is even fair Florence herself looks grim at us, we have had quite London weather since we came, incessant rain & whilst we were at Genoa I could hardly believe it was Novr it was really too hot to bear – Genoa is the spot in the world the most suited to my taste were it but free but under the present Government beautiful as it is I cd not live there for six months. – We went to Pisa by the new road which is not entirely finished for 6 or 7 miles we went along the bed of the river & how we got over it without breaking the Carriage & our own Bones I do not know but I am very glad we came that way for it is beautiful the whole way particularly the Gulf of Spezzia – We shall be very much obliged to you or Mr Fielding <1> [sic] to take lodgings for us at Rome we shall arrive on the 21st of Decr – we shall want two sitting rooms for ourselves one with a fireplace & to the south one bed room for ourselves, two servants bed rooms & a sitting room with fireplace for them Linen to be found us & our dinner from a restaurateur; We do not want them large or expensive but shd prefer them to be all on the same floor, except the Man Servant’s which we do not care about. – We do not mind being on the second floor I travel with my own bed so we shall only want one in our bedroom – this is all I can think of excepting that you may take it from 21st of Decr to 21st of Jany – at which time we shall go to Naples which information you may send to William <2> as he is so anxious to hear of us. Pray tell Aunt Lily <3> I expect to see a great deal of the live world at Rome by her help & of the dead world with yours.
I have very good accounts of all at Penrice <4> Charlotte <5> much better & Mama <6> very well – How I have written so far with such horrible ink I do not know but I am quite tired of it & so are you so adieu
Jane H Nicholl
Monsieur W. H. Talbot
1. Rear Admiral Charles Feilding (1780–1837), Royal Navy; WHFT’s step-father.
2. William Thomas Horner Fox Strangways, 4th Earl of Ilchester (1795–1865), botanist, art collector & diplomat.
3. Lady Elisabeth Theresa Feilding, née Fox Strangways, first m Talbot (1773–1846), WHFT’s mother.
4. Penrice Castle and Penrice House, Gower, Glamorgan, 10 mi SW of Swansea: home of Christopher Rice Mansel Talbot.
5. Charlotte Louisa 'Charry' Traherne, née Talbot (1800–1880), WHFT’s cousin.
6. Lady Mary Lucy Cole, née Strangways, first m. Talbot (1776–1855), WHFT’s aunt.