1601: Conversation as it was by the Social Fireside in the Time of the Tudors eBook: Page2

Mark Twain (2006)


  June 24, 1880

  My dear Gunn:

  Here it is. It was written by Mark Twain in a serious effort to bringback our literature and philosophy to the sober and chaste Elizabethanstandard. But the taste of the present day is too corrupt for anythingso classic. He has not yet been able even to find a publisher. The Globehas not yet recovered from Downey's inroad, and they won't touch it.

  I send it to you as one of the few lingering relics of that race ofappreciative critics, who know a good thing when they see it.

  Read it with reverence and gratitude and send it back to me; for Mark isimpatient to see once more his wandering offspring.

  Yours,

  Hay.

  In his third letter one can almost hear Hay's chuckle in the certaintythat his diplomatic, if somewhat wicked, suggestion would bear fruit.

  Washington, D. C.July 7, 1880

  My dear Gunn:

  I have your letter, and the proposition which you make to pull a fewproofs of the masterpiece is highly attractive, and of course highlyimmoral. I cannot properly consent to it, and I am afraid the great manywould think I was taking an unfair advantage of his confidence. Pleasesend back the document as soon as you can, and if, in spite of myprohibition, you take these proofs, save me one.

  Very truly yours,

  John Hay.