The following is a love letter I found in a book titled Love Letters: An Anthology of Passion by Michelle Lovric. It is a really neat book with facsimiles of real letters and quotations from lovers' correspondence throughout the ages. If you are a romantic, you might want to check out a copy of this book. I have tried to copy the letter to the best of my ability. I hope you enjoy it.
January 10th, 1845
New Cross, Hatcham, Surrey
I love your verses with all my heart, dear Miss Barrett, -- and this is no off-hand complimentary letter that I shall write, --whatever else, no prompt matter-of-course recognition of your genius and there a graceful and natural end of the thing: since the day last week when I first read your poems, I quite laugh to remember how I have been turning again in my mind what I should be able to tell you of their effect upon me -- for in the first flush of delight I though I would this once get out of my habit of purely passive enjoyment, when I do really enjoy, and thoroughly justify my admiration -- perhaps even, as a loyal fellow-craftsman should, try and find fault and do you some little good to be proud of herafter! -- but nothing comes of it
all -- so into me has it gone, and part of me has it become, this great living poetry of yours, not a flower of which but took root and grew ... oh, how different that is from lying to be dried and pressed flat and prized highly and put in a book with a proper account at bottom, and shut up and put away ... and the book called a 'Flora', besides! After all, I need not give up the thought of doing that, too, in time; because even now, talking with whoever is worthy, I can give reason for my faith in one and another excellence, the fresh strange music, the affluent language, the exquisite pathos and true new brave thought -- but in this addressing myself to you, your
own self, and for the first time, my feeling rises altogher. I do, as I say, love these Books with all my heart -- and I love you too: do you know I was once seeing you? Mr. Kenyon said to me one morning "would you like to see Miss Barrett?" -- then he went to announce me, -- then he returned ... you were too unwell -- and now it is years ago -- and I feel as at some untorward passage in my travels -- as if I had been close, so close, to some world's-wonder in chapel
on crypt, ... only a screen to push and I might have entered -- but there was some slight ... so it now seems ... slight and just-sufficient bar to admission, and the half-opened door shut, and I went home my thousands of miles, and the sight was never to be!Well, these Poems were to be -- and this true thankful joy and pride with which I feel myself.
Yours ever faithfully
Also, the author of the book notes: "The next day, Barrett wrote to a friend that Browning's letter 'threw me into ecstasies'." Now that is romantic!!
Also, the author notes of the letter seals used by Elizabeth and Robert. Robert used a signet ring bearing a seal of the Browning crest and motto, a lion rampant upon a shield above the word "Virtue.' Elizabeth's seal contained her 'pet' name, 'Ba.'
Here is the actual letter that came with the book. They are big (bulky) files
so it may take a while to load, and they may not fit onto the screen