London, South Kensington
13 November 2008
RUSKIN, John (1819-1900). Autograph letter signed ('J. Ruskin') to Miss Leadbeater [n.p., n.d.], 3 pages, 8vo (a few faint spots, very small tear at fold in upper margin).
'MOST INEXPRESSIBLE FEELINGS APPEAR TO ME MORE LIKE BUBBLES WHICH YOU CAN'T CATCH -- OR BREAK IN CATCHING': Ruskin discusses the expression of the 'unfathomable', following a close reading of some verses sent to him by his friend Miss Leadbeater. Comparing feelings to a sea of thought, he disagrees that it should be fathomless, regarding it instead as being able to be charted and sounded, 'on the whole, what can't be expressed -- needn't be, -- which is a great comfort'. However he does admit his own inability to accurately express his feelings, 'I have an uncomfortable sense under those circumstances of being more like a dog or a horse than a human being. There really is an "unfathomable" look about my bulldog's eyes'.
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