Letter to William Dobie, Geneva, Switzerland, June, 1828
This letter was purchased on Ebay, November, 2018. It was mailed on June 30, 1828 in Edinburgh, Scotland,
and is addressed to "Monsieur William Dobie, poste restante, a Geneve". Only the single sheet of paper has survived, showing the second last and the last
pages of the letter, as well as the address portion. As was common in those days, there is no actual envelope, but the letter itself was folded into
an envelope shape and the address written in the blank area, then sealed with wax.
I walked out from Paisley about two o'clock and my arrival as you may imagine was at that hour quite unlooked for.
It was a strangely wild and poetic sort of day & the feelings I had during my walk were in accordance. As I
passed up by the Howood & the (Dent?), saw hallowing hills with the long line of smoke from the Howood(?)
lime works, the clouds resting on (foothill?), the Regholm hill, the steeple and at last the cottage among the
trees -- egad! I was more moved than I could have given myself credit for. There was all the quiet little valley,
the well remembered accents(?) the homely (fires?) and even the very same feelings of comparative deference
to the land etc. to which I had had when I was a boy. But alas! Time had not winged away without
conveying with him something which was dear (to) me. The old cat was dead : all his purrings at rest,
sleeping in a sunny nook under the cherry tree : and the affections of (Trew?) so estranged, although he
recollected me, that at the sound of my foot on the stair he sneaks below the bed -- The other inmates I found
all much as I left them, our dear mother looking well, although she has been of late occasionally indisposed.
Old Crawford dead. I was at the Kirk, heard the learned clergyman (???) on the 4th Chapter of the Epistle to
the Romans in the forenoon, & smoked a pipe in my new library in the afternoon : which room by the way
I have been highly pleased with.
And now my dear fellow I must stop. I shall not sleep quietly (till) I hear from you & I shall write you in course
of two days to (Basle?). Address to (Frangvale?).
My dear Willy. Your most aff't Br(other), [signed] Wilson