Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Gustav Holst

Letter No.: 
VWL232
[?Late1898 (or early 1899)]

5 Cowley St
Westminster

Dear V.H.

We are both most awfully glad about F. Thompson1 and your songs - it was brought about by a certain Miss Noel2 whom we had told about it - she knew the Meynells3 very well who take care of F.T. (He has D.T. and is in a home) and she laid your case before them and they managed it.4
I will go and get your suite - thanks awfully for letting me have it; and for all the directions - will any of it do for performance in church.5  I played the Reubke6 the other day.
Tristan - Glasgow!!!7
Yrs always
R. Vaughan Williams


1. Francis Thompson, the poet.
2. Name is unclear on original. 
3. Wilfrid and Alice Meynell, literary editor and poet.
4. Holst had set a poem by Francis Thompson (To Sylvia, see Short, Gustav Holst: The Man and his Music, p.37) but apparently had difficulty in obtaining the poet’s permission to publish it.
5. Holst’s Suite in G minor for string orchestra, H41. See Short, Gustav Holst: The Man and his Music, p.39.
6. Julius Reubke, Sonata on the 94th Psalm for organ, an established classic of the organ repertoire.
7. Presumably the exclamation refers to a proposed performance in Glasgow of Wagner’s Tristan by the Carl Rosa Opera Company, in whose orchestra  Holst played the trombone.

Location of original letter:

Shelfmark of original letter: 
MS Mus. 158, f.29

Location of copy:

Shelfmark of copy: 
MS Mus. 158, f.24
General notes: 

Typescript copy.
Not included in Heirs and Rebels.

Format: 
Letter
Original database number: 
98xxxe