To W. H. Prescott.
London, July 17, 1856.my dear William,—You have heard, I dare say, of our safe arrival, and perhaps something more; for though I have had time to write only one letter,—it was to William Dexter,—enough has been written by the party to tell all that anybody can desire to know about us. When the cars stopped, the first thing I saw was Lady Lyells charming face on the platform, to welcome us, and during the eighteen days that have followed since, we have had nothing but kindness and hospitality. Our old friends, adding to them those with whom I have had intercourse without personally knowing them, have filled up our whole time. Five invitations were waiting for us when we arrived.1 Lord Stanhope came the next morning, immediately after breakfast, and I gave him your letter.2 Stirling came in the afternoon, and so it has gone on ever since. After to-morrow I have declined all invitations, and begin to make my arrangements for Brussels, for which we shall set out as soon as we can get ready. Your friends here are generally well, and remember you with sincere and affectionate interest, asking constantly whether you will not come again soon, to which I always answer in such a way as to put the burthen upon Susan, who, I suppose, will bear it contentedly rather than lose you. I delivered all your letters; most of them, however, I could not find time to deliver until after I had filled up my days with engagements, which we did in about four or five days after our arrival. . . . . The Ellesmeres, the Laboucheres,3 and Ford have been very kind, and invited us to dine, but we could not accept. I dined at the Duke of Argyll's, with a very brilliant party, and we talked much of you; but Anna was in Kent, on a visit to the Mild