15 Aug. 38.
My dear Talbot,
A short absence from home is my apology for not having sooner answered your very kind note, and thankfully acknowledged the receipt of your Hermes, No 1. <1> It is, indeed, a very learned & most ingenious production, and I am happy to see, that your powerful mind finds leisure for such profound researches. In truth I am quite astonished at the wide range of learning, the multum in parvo, <2> comprised within the <narrow?> limits of 95 pages.
I am expecting tomorrow the arrival of an Uncle of Mrs Butler, Henry Lewis Esq. a friend of Champollion, <3> &c. who has travelled much in Egypt & various parts of the <East?>, and has been many years resident upon the continent. Your elegant present is, therefore, most fortunately timed. It will be to him a source of much interesting study, & will afford us topics of profitable discussion. Macte Esto: <4> I hope No 2 will shortly appear.
I know not, whether you are aware, that, in order to secure to a publication that attention to wh it is entitled, it is found advisable (in these degenerate days) to have it duly noticed in the Reviews. This ought to be looked-to. You must have friends connected with the Quarterly & Edinburgh, who would gladly review such a captivating work; & they ought to be immediately applied to.
As a trifling return for so valuable a work, (χαλκεα χρϒσ ειων), I take the liberty of forwarding to you the Harrow Prolusiones, <5> containing, inter alia, <6> my Son George’s successful translation into Greek Iambics: you will agree with me in thinking the passage as difficult as it is unquestionably beautiful, and in tracing some promise of Scholarship in the successful version: to the Writer of the best Porson prize poem, that has yet appeared from the Cambridge press, such an offering of friendship is at least appropriate. George goes to Trinity <7> in Octr. I beg my most respectful compts to Mrs Talbot, <8> and am Ever
Yours faithfully & affectly
1. Hermes: or Classical and Antiquarian Researches, No. 1. (London: Longman, Orme, Green, Brown & Longman, 1838).
2. Much in little.
3. Jean-François Champollion (1790–1832) accomplished complete decipherment of Egyptian hieroglyphic writing in 1822 after long years of intensive work and many setbacks.
4. Bravo, well done.
6. Among other things.
7. Trinity College, Cambridge.
8. Constance Talbot, née Mundy (1811–1880), WHFT’s wife.