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Elisina Tyler to Mildred Barnes Bliss and Robert Woods Bliss, May 15, 1953

Ville Pierre LisseThe Ville Pierre Lisse (now better known as the Castel Pierre Lisse), a 1920s house adjacent to Sainte-Claire du Château, both of which Edith Wharton had acquired in 1927 and which Elisina Tyler inherited on Wharton’s death, in 1937. Wharton’s butler, Alfred White, lived in the Ville Pierre Lisse until his death.

Hyères (Var)

May 15, 1953This letter is preserved in the Bliss Papers, HUGFP 76.8, series I, box 39, folder: Tyler, Royall and Elisina 1916, 1940–1953.

Dearest Milrobs,

Your kind letterThe whereabouts of this letter are unknown. and the cheque enclosed has reached me safely this morning. I thank you very warmly for your messages, very gratefully for your help—Miss SchroederMiss Schroeder has not been identified. is coming to see me on Sunday 17. She will take the Byzantine silver boxThis silver box has not been identified. safely back to Paris and I will tell Bill to have it valued by Ratton.Probably Charles Ratton (1895–1986), a Parisian art dealer and gallery owner who specialized in so-called primitive art. He will know no doubt where to find him, and I will communicate with you.

There is an illustration (drawing) of a similar box in D. M. Dalton’s book.Probably O. M. Dalton, Byzantine Art and Archaeology (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1911). It is unclear what silver box she refers to. This one cast of all [illegible] the silver in Damascus—all parts of sacristy vessels. I bought it either from Brummer in the old Boulevard Raspail days or from Demotte, in the early rue de Berri days—I have no copy of Dalton’s book here at Hyères, so I cannot give you the page reference.

I will try to make my writing plainer, but I can’t very well control it yet. I had a bad fall my full height and full weight on a stone step in front of No 55 avenue Foch in November, and the second and worse blow when Royall died have worked concurrently for my undoing. [illegible] “repos absolu”“Absolute rest.” enforced by Dr. Dalsace.Possibly the gynecologist Jean Dalsace (1893–1970). I am not a brilliant specimen yet. I have had a copy of lettersThe whereabouts of these typed letters are unknown. I was writing to you both typed by my faithful Mlle GroslierMiss Groslier has not been identified. in Paris. It will reach you in a few days and give you some idea of the circumstances—Meantime, dear Milrobs, you have eased my mind greatly—all I had to distress me was the fear of tarnishing Royall’s reputation of fairness and exactitude in meeting his obligations.

I hope with all my heart that you are coming to Europe this spring or summer, and that you will come to see me at Antigny. It will do me so much good to talk of Royall with you—I am very [illegible] thrown back on myself here, and thoughts will come upon one when one’s days are [illegible]—

Bless you both and thank you for your understanding kindness—with all my heart

Yours [illegible], and as ever,


Associated Places: Hyères (France)