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Charles Dickens

Madeline House and Graham Storey (eds), The British Academy/The Pilgrim Edition of the Letters of Charles Dickens, Vol. 1: 1820–1839

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pg 38To H. W. KOLLE, [APRIL 1834]

MS Comtesse de Suzannet. Date: CD's sketch, "The Boarding House", Part 1, was published 1 May 34.

Bentinck Street. | Monday Evening.

My dear Kolle.

As neither you or yours have the most remote connexion with the Boarding House of which I am the Proprietor, I cannot have the least objection to (indeed I shall feel flattered by) your perusing it; it is however at present in the hands of the Publishers. When they return it to me, you shall have it.

I am much obliged to you for purchasing the Lottery Ticket. I shall call for an hour very soon, when I will kill two Birds with one stone, and pay you for the "wentur" besides bringing the "O'Thello".1

I think if we win we had better sacrifice the discount and take ready money—unless indeed you prefer gold bars. I see by the announcements in the different Lottery Office Windows that the lucky Purchaser of a ticket may have the value "in money or freehold houses". Suppose we have £10 worth of freehold houses. Of course this will afford a small street. I'll have one side of the way, and you shall have the other. I shall improve my property by the erection of brass knockers, and patent Water Closets.

Give my love to Mrs K and Believe me

  •                                             My dear Kolle
  •                                                   Sincerely Yours
  • Henry Kolle Esqre.                                    Charles Dickens

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Editor’s Note
1 An unpublished operatic burlesque by CD. Several MS pages have survived; facsimiles of three are given in D, xxvi (1930), 9–11. One is endorsed by John Dickens: "This Page is from an unpublished Travestie written by Mr. Charles Dickens for private performance in his own family (1833), and is in his own handwriting. The 'Great Unpaid" was your humble Servant John Dickens | Alphington | 6 June 1842." Another is the opening of Act i, sc. iii with Chorus, to a tune from Robert le Diable, sung by Desdemona, Iago, Cassio and "G U"—plainly the "Great Unpaid". (Cf. production of Othello in CD's sketch "Mrs Joseph Porter 'Over the Way'" in the Monthly Magazine, Jan 34.)
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