Letter from Adeline Vaughan Williams to Gustav Holst

Letter No.: 
Jan 8th. [1901]

Leith Hill Place

Dear Mr  Von Holst

Your Scotch present arrived on the same day as we returned to London - we had it for our first tea. I am so glad you did not succeed in sending us Scotch weather instead - this was so far nicer - and please do not think me ungrateful for not writing before - the chief reason being that Ralph thought you wd not value a letter of thanks unaccompanied by criticism (not of the shortbread however - for that was above criticism).1
Another reason was that we were only 3 days in London & had much to do - a bicycle to be sent to be repaired, the tyres having burst at Bournemouth,  & the Ysaye 4tet to be heard.
I had no need of restoratives or of poisons after listening to yr  tune. It has a haunting quality in it that I like - Ralph has come to the conclusion he was not made to write opera - & I think so too - but I hope you will. Nicholas2 spoke with great enthusiasm of the Indian outline you showed him.3
When do you come back to London? We shall be there at the end of the week & beginning of the next.
Yours very sincerely

Adeline Vaughan Williams

Ralph went to Chappells to inquire about the Ballet prize - it has not been awarded yet on account of the lamented death of Sir Arthur Sullivan!4

1.  Holst was at this time second trombonist with the Scottish Orchestra based in Glasgow.
2.  Probably Nicholas Gatty
3.  This passage probably refers to the opera Sita which Holst was beginning to work on at this time and may have sent sketches to VW for comment.
4.  On 22 November 1900.


Location of original letter:

Shelfmark of original letter: 
MS Mus. 158, ff.32-33
Original database number: