August 2nd 1877
My Darling Eugénie,
I was out last evening playing croquet at the Rawlinsons, and stopped late, so was prevented from writing my letter in the evening as I had intended, I have not much time this morning so you must forgive me if you find this a short or shabby epistle.
I have just cut some pretty rose buds to post to you, one, the last bloom, from your own tree, marked with red string, it is not a good specimen but I thought you would like to have it, you will find a better bloom from another tree, I hope these will travel as well as the last and that my darling will have much pleasure in receiving them, to me it is a happiness to pack and send them to the dear one who has all my fondest love.
I heard from Charlotte a day or two ago, she prefers the full length likeness (the upright one) of you to the vignette, and thinks my English taken ones preferable, still she was very glad to have them, she says Grandma will feel disappointed if she does not receive them soon, so please tell me in your next if you will send them or leave it to me, I have a full length one to spare.
My Mother is going to Dover next week.
I think your last wedding present a very nice one, good pictures always look well on the walls.
So you like “Character”, I am glad of that, it is a favourite book of mine and I like Smiles for drawing Woman as she ought to be, and, thank God, as she often is.
Ah, my love, do I not well remember our lingering on the balcony that Sunday evening, how often I think over the days when we were together and felt, I think both of us, what a sacred happiness true love brings.
Your dear words so full of deep affection filled me with all sweet thoughts, how could it be otherwise, for I feel that my own Eugénie re-echoes back my love and that in her gentle bosom there dwells a heart full of all trusting love for him whom she has blessed with her dear confidence and will doubly bless as the sweet companion of his life!
How pleased I was to write “August” at the head of this letter, next month we may hope to meet, and four months only now to our wedding month, however dark the days may be in December they must seem bright to me.
I keep looking up at your picture as I write, and as I look it always seems to smile at me; several of my friends have seen it and they all like it, they’d have bad taste if they didn’t.
And now I must say good-bye for I have the roses to pack, I have left three kisses on your rose bud for you, dearest, and I never forget one on my name or to take the kiss I know you always send on yours.
God bless you darling Eugénie
Yours ever most affectionately