The Brownings’ Correspondence, Volume 30

Item# BC30


December 1861–December 1863, Letters 4994–5307

As volume 30 opens, RB, now five months a widower, continues to reside at 1 Chichester Road in London with his son Pen, for whom he engages several tutors, including George Gillespie for Latin, Greek, and Mathematics in the hope of preparing him for university. In March 1863, Pen is entered for residence at Balliol College, Oxford, Michaelmas Term, 1867. Meanwhile, EBB’s Last Poems, silently edited by RB, is issued on 20 March 1862. Later that year, a memorial tablet honoring her is placed above the front entrance to Casa Guidi. A monument for her grave in the Protestant Cemetery in Florence is being designed by Frederic Leighton, based on RB’s ideas. Many of the poet’s letters reflect his anxiety over this project. The Greek Christian Poets and the English Poets, drawn from EBB’s essays published 21 years before in The Athenæum, is published. RB’s Selections from the Poetical Works (1863), silently edited by John Forster and Bryan Waller Procter appears, in December 1862; and Poetical Works (3 vols., 1863), the following summer. The combination of these two publications, their favorable critical and public reception, and RB’s very visible presence in London (he dines out frequently with the great and near great) marks a turning point in his career. In October 1862, he writes to Isa Blagden of his intention “to make a regular poem of” a 17th-century Italian murder case, which will become The Ring and the Book (1868–69). For summer holidays in 1862 and 1863, RB and his family travel to Ste. Marie, near Pornic, Brittany, where in the latter year he composes a poem of “120 lines” (probably “Gold Hair”).

  • Published 2024
  • ISBN 978-0-911459-47-0
  • LC 84-5287
  • 6 x 9 inches, hardback, xvi + 432 pages
  • 28 illustrations
  • Approximate weight: 2.00 lbs.