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Gerald du Maurier to Sylvia Llewelyn Davies - 1890

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Letter from Gerald du Maurier to his sister Sylvia, 30 March 1890


The Grove, Harrow.
Sunday [30th March 1890]

My darling Sylvia,
I am so sorry I haven't written to congratulate you, but I was "struck up all of a 'eap!" But I do congratulate you, fearfully, though I have never seen the charmer, I'm sorry to say.
I thought there was some sort of emotion tearing your heart by the way in which you wrote, so 'boulverse'.
Thanks very much your letter, riddle, and promise of a tie-pin, which I should like to be a plain Scotch pearl. I dare say you know the sort:
I hope I get home in time to wish you goodbye to the heather of Bonnie Westmorland. I am glad he is a "barrister", because then he won't "bar-sister," - O Lord.
I must now leave off, as I go to school Wednesday, Friday, cock-a-doodle-do, Ra 'phe.
I remain, your loving brother,
Gerald du Maurier

Peter's comment:

Gerald was just 17 when he wrote this inimitable affair - the promised tie-pin, of which he made a sketch, being no doubt for his birthday on March 26th - and nearing the end of his time at Harrow. I am baffled by "Ra'phe". Was it a du Maurier catch word, or a Harrow slogan, or what?
Regrettably, no other du Maurier letters exist, except the one which follows shortly from Emma du Maurier. May, of course, was at home. I don't know where Trixie was living; perhaps too near for writing. No doubt Guy wrote and probably Gyggy and Isabel, but their letters have not survived.


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