Sent by Alfred Russel Wallace, Parkstone, Dorset to Violet Isabel Wallace [address not recorded] on 8 March 1899.
Re. possibility of teaching posts for her in Cardiff or Oxted and school visits in Jena (Germany); sending her a copies of the 'Humanitarian', an Anglo-Russian paper and a German psychical paper; writing an article on an Irish cooperative farm to illustrate socialism and an article for the 'Fortnightly'; 'Wonderful Century' not yet in German; comparison of the 'Maha Bharata' and the 'Iliad'; unidentifiable beetle; English tea.
A typical letter handwritten by author in English and signed by author.
An original MS
Pages with text: 4
Transcriber: Murphy, Will
Transcription date: July 8, 2011
Scrutiny: 15/01/2013 - Catchpole, Caroline;
Signed off: no
March 8th. 1899
My dear Violet
I sent you a P. card yesterday which crossed your letter just received. You will see I agreed with you that the Oxted post will suit you better than the Cardiff one, so now the only thing is to decide whether you will give that up and go on till autumn at Jena or elsewhere. Of course I know nothing of the particulars of this place at Oxtend, whether it is a Kindergarten only, or part of a highschool, or who managed by, or how the salary is to be paid, or of if likely to last and salary to advance, or anything! So you must decide my yourself. But as the salary you said I think was £. 100, I should say that is better than £ 120 in a place like Liverpool -- and then there are the great advantages of being quite in a very beautiful and healthy country [] and having friends about, you know & like. This is a chance that may not occur again, and it would be a pity to lose it on the chance of being obliged, in the Autumn, to take a place in a big smoky town at perhaps a lower salary, or perhaps even get nothing. I think it probable that at Oxtend you might get boarded in some nice farmhouse with unlimited milk, butter, eggs, chickens & bacon, for £1. a week, or even in some cottage & keep yourself, for about the same. Then in your autumn holidays every year you could now go to Jena again if you like the people, & do the School town, or to any part of the German-speaking countries. The German lessons are moderate and I hope will be useful. I sent you a German psychical paper the other day also a "Humanitarian" & now I send [] an Anglo-Russian paper which seems very clever.
Dora is coming after Easter as her present Missis[?] is ill now, so perhaps you may be here when she comes, or rather she may be able to come when you are here. So let us know as soon as things are fixed exactly what date you will come. I see you wrote Luthers so badly at first that I read it Sutter & directed your letters, cards, papers &c. accordingly. I have been very busy writing an article about an old Irish Cooperative farm, & showing how it illustrates Socialism. Bye-the-bye- my "Wonderful Century" is not yet translated into German. I have sent my article to the N "Fortnightly" -- but I am not sure they will have it. I have now finished reading the "Maha Bharata", -- which is on the whole very fine -- finer, I think, than the Iliad. I have read a good deal of [] it twice, & it will bear reading many times. It corresponds pretty nearly in date with the Iliad, -- the scenes it described being supposed ot be about 1500 before Christ, and it was first written down about 600 before Christ. Many of the ideas and moral teachings are beautiful; equal to the best teaching and far superior to the general practice of today. I have made a lot of [1 word illeg.] and suggestions, which I am going to send to the translator, as the proofs have evidently not been carefully read by any English literary man.
Your new beetle quite took me in. I could not make out what species it was! We will send you some tea, & you can show them how to make "English tea" -- but not English tea as you will find it described in the Anglo-Russian paper!
Adieu! | from your affectionate Pa | Alfred R. Wallace [signature]
NB. Brains pumped dry! No more letters for a fortnight!
Please note that work on this transcript is not yet complete. Users are advised to study electronic image(s) of this document, if available.