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To Henry W. Longfellow.

Vienna, Nov. 10, 1839.
dear Henry,—. . . I shall soon be with you; and I now begin to think of hard work, of long days filled with uninteresting toil and humble gains. I sometimes have a moment of misgiving, when I think of the certainties which I abandoned for travel and of the uncertainties to which I return. But this is momentary; for I am thoroughly content with what I have done. If clients fail me; if the favorable opinion of those on whom professional reputation depends leaves me; if I find myself poor and solitary,—still I shall be rich in the recollection of what I have seen, and will make companions of the great minds of these countries I have visited. But it is to my friends that I look with unabated interest, and in their warm greeting and renewed confidence I hope to find ample compensation, even for lost Europe. Then will I work gladly, and look with trust to what may fall from the ample folds of the future,—

‘Veggo, pur troppo
     Che favola é la vita
E la favola mia non é compita.’

I hope people will not say that I have forgotten my profession, and that I cannot live contented at home. Both of these things are untrue; I know my profession better now than when I left Boston, and I can live content at home. . . . You alone are left to me, dear Henry. All my friends, save you, are now engaged or married. And now, Good-night,

And believe me, as ever,

Affectionately yours,

To George S. Hillard.

Berlin, Dec. 25, 1839.
dear Hillard,—A happy Christmas to you, and all my friends! If this sheet is fortunate in reaching the steamship, you will receive it before my arrival; otherwise, it may be doubtful which will first see Boston. Your last is of Oct. 14, and gives me the afflicting intelligence of the death of Alvord.1

Dead ere his prime,
Young Lycidas, and hath not left his peer.

The loss is great for all; but greater for us, his friends. I can hardly realize that my circle of friends is to be drawn closer by this departure; and yet this is the course of life: one by one we shall be summoned, till this circle entirely disappears. I shall break away from Berlin soon,—though, I confess, with great reluctance. I fain would rest here all the winter, pursuing my studies, and mingling in this learned and gay world. I know everybody, and

1 James C. Alvord, ante, Vol. I. pp. 91, 163.

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