Charles Dickens

Madeline House and Graham Storey (eds), The British Academy/The Pilgrim Edition of the Letters of Charles Dickens, Vol. 2: 1840–1841

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To MISS BURDETT COUTTS, 18 DECEMBER [1840]

MS Morgan Library. Date: 18 Dec was Friday in 1840; handwriting supports that year. Address: Miss Coutts.

Devonshire Terrace | Friday Eighteenth December

Dear Miss Coutts.

I cannot thank you sufficiently for your great kindness, and am most happy to avail myself of it.

I have kept the order for this Evening,1 and beg to return you the other.

I beg my compliments to Miss Meredith,2 and assure you that I am always with great sincerity

  •                                    Faithfully Yours
  • Miss Coutts.                                   Charles Dickens

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Editor’s Note
1 Perhaps for Miss Coutts's box at Covent Garden (see To Miss Coutts, 24 Nov 41), where The Merry Wives of Windsor was played that night, with The Critic.
Editor’s Note
2 Hannah Meredith (d. 1878), later Mrs William Brown, Miss Coutts's former governess (since 1821) and lifelong companion and friend. A Summary Account of Prizes for Common ThingsAwarded by Miss Burdett Coutts … , [1856], contains (p. 10) a letter from Miss Coutts, acknowledging indebtedness to her "not only for whatever information I may possess, but for my first interest in [philanthropic] subjects". She was the "one of [CD's] lady friends, very familiar to him indeed" on whom he based Rosa Dartle's "peculiarity of never saying anything outright, but hinting it merely, and making more of it that way" (F, vi, vii, 556); also her argumentativeness. See Margaret Cardwell, "Rosa Dartle and Mrs. Brown", D, lvi (1960), 29–33.
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