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[p. 75]

Instead of the picture Postal.

Mt Vesuvius, Feby 9, 1834
Dear M. Ann.
Will you receive a note from the top of this Mt? I have just put my stick into the burning current. I am almost suffocated with the sulphurous smoke.

I am at this moment in the tomb of Virgil. Sacred to genius is this spot. It stands on a hill overlooking the beautiful bay of Naples.

I finish my letter from Herculaneum, where I now am. I have descended sixty feet into the midst of the Theatre, & the rattling of carriages over the pavement above makes this dark tomb resound as with thunder.

Feby 21st 1834 Yr Br
C. Brooks.

Rome March 4, 1834.
I have come to the “Pantheon” or “Temple of all the gods,” now converted into “All Saints Church” , & here I am writing in the midst of this vast Rotunda, hoping that these lines may not be less acceptable from being indicted [sic] under such a dome.

Here & everywhere I am yrs most sincerely

Rome March 5, 1834
My dear M. Ann,
I have carried this letter in my pocket throa the ruins of Pompeii, & throa the Roman Forum, & fearing that you might think I had forgotten my promise, I send it, only because it may have some value with you from the circumstance of having been a traveller with me in each memorial place. I shall write you soon. With warmest wishes for yr best good I am yrs ever

Charles B.

Note. The above is written upon two pages of a sheet of note paper and the address is: Miss Mary Ann N. Williams, care of Mrs. C. W. Brooks, Hingham, Mass. The postmark shows the date of receipt, New York, May 12, and that it was a ‘Ship’ letter, that is, one on which the postage was to be collected in this country. It also [p. 76] bears a stamp ‘Forwarded by Yr. Ob. Serv.t Welles & Co., Paris.’

The handwriting is far from being in Mr. Brooks' usual style, which was clear and precise, and this goes to show that the various items were indeed written as stated. Mr. Brooks made good his promise to ‘write soon,’ for he sent a long letter within a few days.

Miss Williams was his wife's sister, who was with Mrs. Brooks during her husband's absence. There was clearly need of some one, for when Mr. Brooks sailed for Europe, November 8, 1833, he had left at home an infant less than six weeks old.

During his pastorate in Hingham, Mr. Brooks lived in a house, burned many years ago, which stood on the lot adjoining the land of the First Church, ‘The Old Ship,’ directly south.

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