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Elisina Tyler to Mildred Barnes Bliss, August 5, 1913

Chât. de Genay, Côte d’Or

August 5th 1913.Tuesday.

Dearest Mildred

I must come to you about something that is wringing my heart at intervals since this morning. I have received a letter from a womanMrs. Curtis. See also letters of August 8, 1913, and August 14, 1913. Elisina Tyler provides Mrs. Curtis's name in her letter of April 21, 1914.—a gentlewoman, whom I knew very well once and who by a long series of misplaced trustfulness and untimely mistrustfulness has reduced herself to the point where there is only a typewriter and—Christian science! between her and physical want. She has a son, a sickly clerk in the north of England. He has been “poorly” for some time and at last fell down quite a fortnight ago. He was nursed by people who hadn’t enough for themselves, and who sent him back to her as soon as he could be sure to hold together during the journey.

The times are slack for typewriting: the lady herself has been “low.”—I am only too much afraid that I can interpret that word correctly—there is some rent owing, and the gas.

Now I suppose twenty five pounds would do it all, and patch up the son. I can only manage five pounds myself at present. Will you help a little towards the rest?

I know her, Mildred. There is an extraordinary grandeur in her humble acceptance of the visitations of God—but aren’t the gods cruel in their sport! It was this sort of thing going on all round that made me nearly ruin my health on the Englishwoman.Elisina Tyler founded and edited The Englishwoman, a feminist monthly journal, in 1909, the only year that she was involved with the periodical. The Englishwoman was published in forty-nine volumes from 1909 to 1921. The first number, “February 1909,” was printed on January 27, 1909. Volumes one to four (the first twelve months) were published by “Grant Richards.” It was then published by Sidgwick and Jackson (to 1913); Evans Brothers (to 1916), and finally by “The Englishwoman” (to 1921).

She says “Of course I don’t despair, I have too much faith in—Christian science! It used once to be my typewriter and Christian science.” But that was in the boastful days when the wretched clerk could be made to stand up.

I can’t write about anything else.

Ever yours


My best love to Robert.

Associated Places: Semur-en-Auxois (France)