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“ [239] kindness and devotion to me, and so is Jack, but I have Rome en grippe; nothing in it pleases me.”

December 6. Something, perhaps it is the bright weather, moves me to activity so strongly that I hasten to take up my pen, hoping not to lapse into the mood of passive depression which has possessed me ever since my arrival in Rome.”

December 7. We visited the [William J.] Stillmans -S. and I had not met in thirty years, not since '67 in Athens. Went to afternoon tea at Miss Leigh Smith's. She is a cousin of Florence Nightingale, whom she resembles in appearance. Mme. Helbig was there, overflowing as ever with geniality and kindness.”

Mr. Stillman was then the Roman correspondent of the London Times, a position only second in importance to that of the British Ambassador. His tall, lean figure, stooping shoulders,--where a pet squirrel often perched,--his long grey beard and keen eyes were familiar to the Romans of that day. His house was a meeting-place for artists and litterati. Mrs. Stillman our mother had formerly known as the beautiful Marie Spartali, the friend of Rossetti and Du Maurier, the idol of literary and artistic London. A warm friendship grew up between them. Together they frequented the antiquaries, gleaning small treasures of ancient lace and peasant jewels.

“I bought this by the Muse Stillman's advice” : this explanation guaranteed the wisdom of purchasing the small rose diamond ring set in black enamel.

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