[Julia Maria Hallam, wife of historian Henry Hallam.] Autograph Letter Signed ('J M Hallam') to Lady Elizabeth Palgrave, wife of Sir Francis Palgrave, reporting in affectionate terms on her son's health at Eton College.

Julia Maria Hallam (1783-1840), wife of historian Henry Hallam (1777-1859), sister of poet Sir Charles Abraham Elton (1778-1853) [Lady Elizabeth Palgrave [née Turner] (1799-1852)]
Publication details: 
'Eton Friday Eveng.' [With postmark dated 29 July 1837.]
SKU: 21514

2pp, 4to. On first leaf of bifolium, the second leaf carrying the address to 'Lady Palgrave | Hampstead Green', with four postmarks, one dated 29 July 1837. In fair condition, on aged, worn and creased paper. Lady Elizabeth Palgrave was the wife of the archivist and historian Sir Francis Palgrave (1788-1861, né Cohen), and daughter of the banker, naturalist and bibliophile Dawson Turner (1775-1858) of Yarmouth. Their son Francis Turner Palgrave (1824-1897), remembered for his anthology 'The Golden Treasury', was a friend of Tennyson, and the writer of this letter was the mother of Tennyson's friend Arthur Henry Hallam (1811-1833), subject of perhaps his finest poem, 'In Memorian'. A contemporary pencil note states that the letter relates to Julia Hallam's son Henry Fitzmaurice Hallam (1824-1850), who was at Eton in 1837. Considering that – as Henry Hallam's entry in the Oxford DNB states – he and Julia 'had eleven children, but only four of their progeny reached adulthood and only one outlived Hallam himself', Julia Hallam writes with understandable anxiety; 'My dear Friends will rejoice with us that we found our darling Boy better – thank God it has been a slight attack, proceeding apparently from accidental derangement – indigestion - & we hope either to take him back with us tomorrow – or if the medical man thinks this too soon, that he will go up in a chaise with another boy, whom he knows, to town on Monday - & there Boosey [i.e. a servant of the Elton family] will receive him & take him on.' She does not regret that they came to Eton, 'as the motion saved my poor nervous husband a day's misery - & was one both rewarded & cheered by finding the dear child better than we expected'. She concludes warmly: 'Pray write to me, my dear kind friend, wherever you go - & God bless & prosper you & your's – the sight of you was very soothing to me.' In a postscript she expresses her wish that 'you could all be comforted with this good news at Sevenoaks!', adding that she hopes Lady Palgrave 'will make out my Scrawl', and ending the postscript: 'Your parasol was put into our carriage by mistake. I will endeavour to send it to the Chapter House'.