Charles Dickens

Madeline House and Graham Storey (eds), The British Academy/The Pilgrim Edition of the Letters of Charles Dickens, Vol. 1: 1820–1839

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To MISS MARIA BEADNELL, [19 MAY 1833]

MS Huntington Library. Date: the conciliatory note enclosed in next.

18 Bentinck Street. | Sunday Morning.

Dear Miss Beadnell.

I am anxious to take the earliest opportunity of writing to you again, knowing that the opportunity of addressing you through Kolle—now my only means of communicating with you—will shortly be lost, and having your own permission to write to you—I am most desirous of forwarding a note which had I received such permission earlier, I can assure you you would have received 'ere this. Before proceeding to say a word upon the subject of my present note let me beg you to believe that your request to see Marianne Leigh's answer is rendered quite unnecessary by my previous determination to shew it you, which I shall do immediately on receiving it—that is to say if I receive any at all. If I know anything of her art or disposition however you are mistaken in supposing that her remarks will be directed against yourself. I shall be the mark at which all the anger and spleen will be directed—and I shall take it very quietly, for whatever she may say I shall positively decline to enter into any further controversy with her. I shall have no objection to break a lance paper or otherwise with any champion to whom she may please to entrust her cause but I will have no further correspondence or communication with her personally, or in writing. I have copied the note and done up the parcel which will go off by the first Clapton Coach tomorrow morning.—

And now to the object of my present note. I have considered and reconsidered the matter, and I have come to the unqualified determination that I will allow no feeling of pride no haughty dislike to making a conciliation to prevent my expressing it without reserve.—I will advert to nothing that has passed; I will not again seek to excuse any part I have acted or to justify it by any course you have ever pursued, I will revert to pg 29Editor’s Notenothing that has ever passed between us; I will only openly and at once say that there is nothing I have more at heart, nothing I more sincerely and earnestly desire than to be reconciled to you.—It would be useless for me to repeat here what I have so often said before; it would be equally useless to look forward and state my hopes for the future—all that any one can do to raise himself by his own exertions and unceasing assiduity I have done, and will do. I have no guide by which to ascertain your present feelings and I have God knows no means of influencing them in my favor. I never have loved and I never can love any human creature breathing but yourself. We have had many differences, and we have lately been entirely separated. Absence however has not altered my feelings in the slightest degree, and the Love I now tender you is as pure, and as lasting as at any period of our former correspondence. I have now done all I can to remove our most unfortunate and to me most unhappy misunderstanding—The matter now of course rests solely with you, and you will decide as your own feelings and wishes direct you. I could say much for myself, and I could entreat a favourable consideration in my own behalf but I purposely abstain from doing so because it would be only a repetition of an oft told tale, and because I am sure that nothing I could say would have the effect of influencing your decision in any degree whatever. Need I say that to me it is a matter of vital import and the most intense anxiety?—I fear that the numerous claims which must necessarilly be made on your time and attention next week will prevent your answering this note within anything like the time which my impatience would name. Let me entreat you to consider your determination well whatever it be and let me implore you to communicate it to me as early as possible.—As I am anxious to convey this note into the City in time to get it delivered today I will at once conclude by begging you to believe me

  • Yours sincerely
  •      Charles Dickens

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Editor’s Note
29 line 22 necessarilly fn Thus in MS.
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