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Royall Tyler to Mildred Barnes Bliss, February 6, 1926

Commissariat General of the League of Nations
Budapest, 6 Feb. 26Saturday.

Dearest Mildred,

I was sorry not to be able to ship FettichSee letter of December 31, 1925. to you straight away. But you’ll get him. The Director of the Hungarian Institute in Berlin, where he’s working at present, was here the other day, and promised me he’d send Fettich to Stockholm soon, and I’ve written to Fettich to report to Robert as soon as he gets there.

Fettich is not asleep. He has actually succeeded in getting, from LunacharskyAnatoly Vasilyevich Lunacharsky (1875–1933), a Russian Marxist revolutionary and the first Soviet People’s Commissar of Enlightenment responsible for culture and education. He was active as an art critic and journalist throughout his career. who was recently in Berlin on a visit, a subsidy to permit him to make a long scientific journey in Russia. The Ostjaks,The Ostyaks (or Khanty), an indigenous people living in Yugra (Khanty–Mansi Autonomous Okrug), a region in Russia. who appear to be the Magyars’The Magyars (Hungarians), an indigenous people native to the Carpathian Basin who speak Hungarian. nearest relatives, live on the Eastern slopes of the Ural, and Fettich is going to have a look at them and investigate their music—he is almost as much immersed in music as in Völkerwanderung“Migration Period.” art. So you’d better arrange to catch him both going into Russia and emerging from it—if emerge he does. There are a few surviving Ostjak tribes who still practice some variety of Shamanistic religion, apparently much like the Magyars when they reached Hungary, but most of them have already learned to play the typewriter and to chew gum instead of sacrificing white horses to the sun—so it’s high time the remaining good ones should be investigated.

I took Bill as far as Vienna on his way back to England, and we had a delightful three days there—heavenly music: die Entführung aus dem SérailDie Entführung aus dem Serail (“The Abduction from the Seraglio”), an opera by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. enchanted him. He takes as kindly to Mozart as to the pleasures of the table—truites au bleu chez Sacher“Blue trout at the Sacher.” The Sacher Hotel and Café in Vienna was founded in 1876.—but he confided to me that if he had to choose between losing his appreciation of food and his appreciation of all external beauty (sic), he’d choose to keep appreciation of food.

For a goodish few months to come I shall be pretty well tied here, but I cherish the hope of being able to escape northwards sometime, so do please let me know your plans in advance. It would be a blow if I couldn’t see Stockholm with you, and I mean to have a try.

I hope our troubles with our publishers are at an end—or, if that’s too much to ask, such troubles as have to be endured before the book appears. We’ve passed the final proofs. It’s slight as far as number of words goes, but it has taken us a deuce of a lot of trouble. Love to Robert: please, and to you.

Yrs ever
R. T.

Fettich’s address in Berlin: Dr. N. Fettich
Collegium Hungaricum
Marienstrasse.

 

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