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[149] expressions of friendship, but none more sincere than those of

Your old friend — I mean Your young friend, W. W. Story. Rome, Palazzo Barberini, May 10, 1889.

From James Russell Lowell

68 Beacon Street, 13th May, 1889.
Dear Mrs. Howe,
I should n't have suspected it, but if you say so, I am bound to believe this improbability, as absurd as Leporello's Catalogue for its numerals. If it be so — I beg pardon — since it is so, I am glad that you are going to take it cheerfully as who should say to Time, “Another turn of the glass, please, my young friend, I'm writing.” But alas, I can't be there to take a glass with you. You say, “if there be no obstacle.” No less than a couple of thousand miles of water, harder to get over than the years themselves, which indeed get behind more swiftly than they ought. I can at least wish you many happy returns of the day and will drink to your health on the 27th. I sail on the 18th.

Pray accept my thanks and regrets and make them acceptable to your children.

Faithfully yours, James Russell Lowell.

The Journal thus notes the occasion.

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