Sent by Alfred Russel Wallace, Parkstone, Dorset to Violet Isabel Wallace [address not recorded] on 29 October 1894.
Re. recovery from damage to his eyesight, unable to read or write for previous month; Ma (Annie Wallace) reading papers to him, learning Poe's "Farewell to Earth" by heart to pass the time; visit of Miss Heaton from Natal with a trap-door spider for Violet, can supply a chameleon if wanted; "Clementina" [Clement Reid] has left for Corfe; rearrangement of furniture in study (sketch plan included).
A typical letter handwritten by author in English and signed by author.
An original MS
Pages with text: 4
Transcriber: O'Hanlon, Alice
Transcription date: February 15, 2012
Scrutiny: 15/01/2013 - Catchpole, Caroline;
Signed off: no
Oct[obe]r 29th. 1894
My dear Violet
I use the first returning eyesight to send you a few lines. On Saturday Miss Heaton from Natal called & brought you a fine trap-door spider & trap, and asked if you would like another Chameleon. Of course I said yes! & she said she hoped to receive some in about a month & I told her it would be better to send it here as you would be home at Xmas.
The only other news is that [] "Clementina" -- as I hear you cruelly call him -- has left for Corfe, so we shall have his evening visits no more.
During my month’s abstinence from reading & writing -- Ma has been very good in reading the paper to me every day & the "Clarion" on Sunday. Between whiles, when not in the garden or out walking -- which I had to perform with one eye tied up & two pairs of spectacles! -- I amused myself learning Poe’s "Farewell to Earth", just peeping at a line now & then when I couldn’t remember [] & also going over it every night in bed, so that now I know it all through without missing a word, I think, -- & I admire it more than ever so that I think I shall now give a lecture on it one day.
We have also rearranged the Study & greatly improved it: this -- [a sketch of the study appears at the bottom of the page] [] It makes the room look bigger and is much more convenient.
We have had a week’s continuous gale, with rain in torrents & sunshine in between.
Your affectionate Pa | Alfred R. Wallace [signature]
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