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J M Barrie to Sylvia Llewelyn Davies - 1907

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Letter from Barrie to Sylvia, sent from Dublin, 1 April 1907


Shelbourne Hotel,
Monday [1 April 1907]

Dearest Jocelyn,
I was glad to have your telegram and to hear Arthur is getting on all right. I fear we won’t be back till Wednesday as Mr Frohman has business with the Irish theatre people that prevents his getting away tomorrow. I wish it could have been tomorrow for with the seas between I seem as far away in time as in distance. The sea behaved very well to us coming and was as smooth as the billiard board.
We have had two drives to Phoenix Park and Bray, and the play is doing excellently. Mary wired to Leinster Corner & I got it there. She has started off well. Madge seems to be pretty right for the present, but no doubt she is worrying in her mind over the operation in front of her.
I wish I could say to you that now I am going up to Arthur, it is the only thing I seem to want to do nowadays. He lies there like a wounded soldier and is the gallantest figure any of us is ever likely to see. I always had a passion for simplicity, and I feel sure now that there can be nothing very heroic or lovable without it. I hope you are taking your medicine and making faces at it, and I know your dear heart beats brave as ever.
On Wednesday evening sometime you will see me minus my waistcoat and probably not well brushed.
Ever your loving

[AB: This letter must have been in the haul Cynthia Asquith took away from Barrie’s flat after his death in 1937 since it doesn’t appear in the Morgue. The visit with Frohman was prompted by the opening of Peter Pan in Dublin, with Pauline Chase and Hilda Trevelyan as Peter and Wendy.
Madge = Barrie’s niece, Madge Murray, who was understudying Irene Rooke as Mrs Darling and was to take over the role in the 1907/08 revival. Peter described her elsewhere in the Morgue as "nice Madge Murray, J.M.B.’s niece, then in her very early 20s, the most normal and human member of the Barrie family, who sang songs at the piano and I think must have introduced a welcome note of natural gaiety ...]


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