My dear Henry
I have been a long time answering your letter <1> but am not the less obliged to you for all that – The one I received here the very day after I arrived, put me quite in an ecstacy [sic] for it cleared up a gt many doubts abt a number of flowers I had found on the road – & having no foreign botanic book I was quite at a loss. – I have as you may suppose quietly made acquaintance with M. Risso <2> & he declares I was lucky for I had found a number of things in france [sic], particularly the Smilax mauritanica at the Pont du Gard & several other nice things. – I have not yet seen the plant of the of the Coris[illegible] but Risso promises to get you seeds of it. I am going to send Jane <3> a list of all I have found. – I never take a walk without finding something quite new to me – the place itself is beautiful tho’ I have not been much beyond the immediate environs yet. – Corsica I have twice seen – once from the Turin & again from the Genoa road.<4> I went one day to Gueroud[sic] with M. de Chateauneuf <5> & shd not desire better than to inhabit it for a term of years. – My smattering of botany, conchology & other bits of ologies has been of very great use to us here, for a place so completely without resources I never saw – not one bookseller in such a Town as this & if it was not for M. de Cessolles & M. Avigdor<6> I know not what we should do. – We intend going one day to the Col de Tende just to see what we can of it – as we have fully determined on going to Genoa by the Corniche in the Spring. – I had a letter from John <7> the other day from Naples where he seems to have established himself for the winter. – Henry Frampton <8> left us a fortnight ago for Florence – he writes in great dudgeon with the Hotel de Londres at Genoa – which do you recommend? – Will the Convolvulus cantabrica live in England – or the Psoralea or the Scolymus Hispanicus or the ononis minutissima – they are all so pretty I want to introduce them there. – so like the Tragus racemosus & the Globularia – I shall send Harriot Frampton <9> seeds of a great many. – I beg you will write to me & pray remember yr letters give me infinite pleasure –
Yrs in a hurry
Monr H. Talbot
Hotel de la Terrasse
Rue de Rivoli
1. Letter not located.
2. Antonio Risso (1777–1845), author of Ichthyologie de Nice, ou Histoire naturelle des poissons du département des Alpes Maritimes (Paris: F. Schoell, 1810).
3. Jane Harriot Nicholl, née Talbot (1796–1874).
4. Corsica is 100 miles from Nice and not ordinarily visible, unless by mirage or light diffraction.
5. M. de Chateauneuf was a relative of Comte Hilarion Spitalieri de Cessole,whose wife was born Sophie Marie T. P. P. de Chateauneuf. Gueroud is Sir Charles’s rendering of Gairaut, near Nice, where the de Chateauneuf family had and still have property. Comte H S de C’s son became Marquis de Chateauneuf and died at Gairaut.
6. The wealthy Jewish banking and trading family of Avigdor owned the Palais Avigdor at Nice, with Isaac Samuel Avigdor (1775-1845) as the senior member in 1824. De Cessole was another prominent family at Nice, and Uncle Charles may have relied upon Comte Hilarion Spitalieri de Cessole (1776-1845), later President of the Senate at Nice, or one of his family.
7. John George Charles Fox Strangways (1803–1859), MP.
8. Henry Frampton (1804-1879).
9. Harriot Georgiana Mundy, née Frampton (1806-1886), WHFT’s cousin & sister-in-law; Henry Frampton's sister; married William Mundy (1801-1877) in 1830.