1 page, 8vo, Gad's Hill Place stationery, mourning paper." />
4 December 2009
DICKENS, Charles. Autograph letter signed ("Wilmot"), to Peter [Fraser?], Gad's Hill Place, Kent, 5 December 1863. 1 page, 8vo, Gad's Hill Place stationery, mourning paper.
"GOD BLESS US ALL THIS COMING CHRISTMAS, AND GIVE US CHRISTMAS THOUGHTS!"
Dickens echoes his famous creation Tiny Tim in this jovial Christmas letter, signed with the name of a character Dickens once played in a charitable theatrical. "I am delighted," he writes, "to get the hearty letter of my old Wile's Coffee House friend Le Trimmer; and again the shade of your dear Middlesex crosses me, saying , 'Here's Peter-won't come on. You know!' Then in a ghostly manner, raps gold snuff box, and fades into the other world. Of course Mrs Lucifer lived on the Eastside up the Street (how did you know it?) but not so far down as you suppose. On the Northern side of Monarch Street. God bless us all this coming Christmas, and give us Christmas thoughts! of which your letter is full, and so most welcome. My love to your good wife and to you." "Lord Wilmot" was a comic dandy whom Dickens very much enjoyed bringing to life in Bulwer Lytton's "Not So Bad as We Seem," a play staged before the Queen and Consort in 1850, then taken on tour to Bath and other towns. (See lot 104 for an invitation to the performance.) Performances benefited the Guild of Literature and Art, a relief fund for indigent and elderly writers and artists founded by Dickens and Lord Lytton in 1850.
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