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Document number: 9686
Date: 14 Aug 1870
Recipient: TALBOT William Henry Fox
Author: TALBOT Rosamond Constance
Collection: British Library, London, Manuscripts - Fox Talbot Collection
Last updated: 1st September 2003

Hotel Riche-Mont

Lausanne. Aug 14 1870

My dear Papa,

Another letter from you (of the 11th) has just been forwarded from Ouchy, by which we learn that our telegram was actually 40 hours in reaching you, although the official promised that it should be immediately forwarded! I dated it myself – the 9th 5. P.M. but no doubt the excessive pressure of telegraphic business just now is the excuse. Our letters also seem to have been behind time, although all yours have arrived with perfect exactness; but there has certainly been some confusion in the outgoing mails, as even at the general Post office they could not tell us the exact time of departure, but said it depended upon circumstances. Tomorrow however it is announced, by a new regulation, that all English letters must be posted before one o’clock, so I hope such delays will no longer occur. This is the list of those I have written – as in my last to Mama I made some confusion about them – since we crossed the Simplon, where the floods caused a delay to ourselves, and a gap in our correspondence. From Vevey to Mama on the 7th: dto also to Mama, I think, on the 8th from here to you on the 10th again to Mama on the 12th so that this is the fifth letter I have written to Lacock since we have been in Switzerland. I have also written today to Tilly – Mamie from Vevey on the 8th and I from Brieg on the 5th three times.

It is extraordinary what a pause there is in the news – nothing of importance again today – what does the lull forbode.

I am not at all satisfied with your prophesies, for they always come after! you always say “that is just what I expected,” when the news has come!! but you should tell us beforehand what will be the denouement of all this, and in what way peace will be made. I think we literally live upon the newspapers; seeing the Times and the Daily telegraph: as well as Galignani every day: they take all these in the Hotel. We also purchase daily the Journal de Genève and Gazette de Lausanne, both containing the latest telegrams, and the former sometimes very good articles; so you see we are well furnished; and it would be amusing were it not so serious to hear the different reports of the new arrivals in the Hotel, and their different conjectures as to what is going to happen, each one so sure of his own opinion being the only right one. We have also got a good large map of the theatre of War pinned up against the wall for constant reference, for which however we paid the large sum of 1 franc 50C. So you see, dear Papa, we need not trouble you to send anything by post.

The most annoying thing is about money, for the Bankers here choose to be so extremely agitated on account of the establishment of cours force in France, that they positively refuse to receive any French Bank notes, (luckily we have none) and have again raised the price of gold on English letters of Credit. Except this circumstance we are perfectly comfortable here; the house, although kept by the same proprietors as l’hotel Gibbon, is very nice, clear and pretty, and there are not too many people in it. However you must believe, that although well satisfied here, and enjoying extremely fine weather again after the storms, we would give anything to be at home, at Lacock with you all! Mamie has not been quite well these two days; but I think it is nothing but a passing indisposition caused by the sudden change of weather, and also a little anxiety. We wrote yesterday to M. Stuttel of the Hotel d’Orient Paris, where our boxes have been awaiting us these two months, to send them by Messageries Imperiales to their correspondents in London, B.W. & H. Horne, 4 Moorgate Stret. City. There are two boxes, and a portmanteau full of books. they will be addressed to Lacock Abbey, and each box has it’s key fastened to it for the Custom house. Perhaps Goodwin will have to write to London for them in a few days.

I should very much like to know whether Mr & Mrs Knox and Annie Craig, got safely home. They must have found themselves in no little embarrassment if they really, as intended tried to go through Bâle.

You say nothing of the Vicar’s application for the Lunatic Asylum Chaplaincy: I do wish he had got it, it would just suit him! I cannot help feeling angry with his Uncle Mr M. Talbot, who if it be true that he does not blame his nephew’s conduct, might at least have helped to bear the burden and losses consequent upon it, instead of allowing them to fall on those to whom it is of so much greater consequence than to him.

Goodbye now, dear Papa, Mamie sends much love to everybody. As for Charles tell him that I should be in great danger of forgetting his existence, did you and Mama not mention him occasionally!

Your affectionate


I am afraid this will be too late for the post today.

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