Holroyd Chaplin

Holroyd Chaplin

b: 17 MAR 1840
d: 23 DEC 1917
"A prosperous, sturdy, scholarly, bearded Victorian solicitor."
Report on Chaplin (aged 9) from Eagle House:
Month ending: June 9, 1849
Latin and Greek: His progress is very fair, but I think he might do better.
English lessons:
Mathematics:
French:
Place in Class of 15 boys: Week 1, 4th; Week 2, 6th; Week 3, 3rd; Week 4, 4th.
General conduct: Far too noisy; but in other respects, a good boy.
Note: It is particularly requested, that no Boys be invited out, during the half-year, unless the above report be favourable.


1851 Census:

Source: HO107/1615, Tunbridge - Folio 30 page 53 - household schedule number 183 - GSU number 193516.

Holroyd Chaplin Boarder 11 Born Warwickshire, Edgebaston.

There were 43 boarders, all boys, and the head of Tonbridge School was James Ina? Welldon, born abt 1813, at St Mary's, Cambridgeshire.

1861 Census:

RG 9/85 Christchurch, St Marylebone Folio 68 Page 43 (Municipal Ward of Dorset Square and Regent's Park)

35 Blandford Square

Holroyd Chaplin Head Unm 21 Solicitor's Clerk Born Warwickshire, Edgbaston
Julia M Chaplin Sister Unm 24 Born Warwickshire, Edgbaston
Louisa S Chaplin Sister Unm 22 Born Warwickshire, Edgbaston
Ayrton Chaplin Brother Unm 18 Born Warwickshire, Edgbaston
Matilda Chaplin Sister Unm 14 Scholar Born France, Honfleur (British Subject)
Samuel H Feild Uncle Married 31 Incumbent, Hurdsfield Born Nothamptonshire
Ellen S A Feild Cousin Unm 17 Born Middlesex, Camden Town
Apollonia F LorenzoServ Unm 21 Domestic servant Born Prussia, Kirchberg (British Subject)
Charlotte White Serv Unm 21 Cook Domestic Born Sussex, Torrington


An entry in the London Post Office Directory (Law) for 1871? reads: "Chaplin, Holroyd (firm Valpy & Chaplin), 19 Lincoln's inn fields WC; residence, 21 Westbourne park villas W."


1871 Census:

21 Westbourne Park Villas, W, Paddington, London Middlesex:

Holroyd Chaplin Mar 30 Solicitor Born Warwickshire, Edgbaston
Euphemia Isabella Chaplin Mar 23 Born Sussex, Brighton
Selina Evans Servant Unm 21 Cook Devon, Branston


1881 Census:

29 Palace Gardens Terrace, Kensington, London, Middlesex:

Holroyd Chaplin Mar 40 Born Edgbaston, Warwickshire
Euphemia I Chaplin Mar 32 Born Brighton, Sussex
Phyllis Chaplin Unm 1 Born Kensington
Theodorick Chaplin Unm 1m Born Kensington
Jessie McKenzie Unm 30 Born Inverness, Scotland
Eliza Austin (Servant?) Wid 27 Born Wool, Dorset
Fanny Denby (Servant?) Unm 23 Born Bricklehampton, Worcestershire

1891 Census:

29 Palace Gardens Terrace:

Holroyd Chaplin Head Mar [50] Solicitor Born Warwickshire, Edgbaston
Euphemia I Chaplin Wife Mar 44 Born Sussex, Brighton
Allan N Chaplin Son S 19 Articled clerk to solicitor Born London, Paddington
Irene K Chaplin Dau S 18 Scholar do
Phyllis Chaplin Dau 11 do Born London, Kensington
Theodoric Chaplin Son 10 do do
Daphne Chaplin Dau 6 do Born Broadstairs, Kent
Catarina Gogalean Servant S 25 Housemaid Born Wurtenburg, Germany
Flora(?) Humby(?) Servant S 21 Cook Born Wiltshire, Salisbury

1901 Census:

29 Palace Gardens Terrace, church St Mary Abbotts:

Holroyd Chaplin Mar 61 Born Edgbaston, Warwickshire
Euphemia Chaplin Mar 53 Born Brighton
Phyllis Chaplin Dau 21 Born Kensington
Theodore Chaplin Son 20 Born Kensington
Daphne Chaplin Dau 16 Born Broadstairs, Kent
Ellen Saunders Servant 24 Born Buckinghamshire

Letter from John Clarke Chaplin to Acton Ayrton, August 1847:

Holroyd: considered very much like you and Matilda, reserved and very thoughtful and somewhat absent, a quiet and mild boy -- unambitious and not very robust, indeed mainly for his health on Thursday (fifth inst) we left him at boarding school here (Miss Miller's Montpellier Road) preparatory to his going to the Reverend E Wickham's at Hammersmith where there are 130 boys. Mr W. is Brother of my Brother-in-law Revd F. Wickham who is second master at Winchester. Holroyd is rather backward in reading etc but has a good deal of general Information about history etc. -- but as you know he must have the dry rudiments of learning drummed into him.


Letter to his first child, celebrating Nugent's first birthday:
"My dear Nugent,
I wish you many happy returns of to-morrow when you will have completed the first year of what I hope may be a long and a good life. As the child is father to the man, you are already a parent, and, as such, you will I hope behave with becoming gravity and only chortle pleasantly. Some day I will give you a present on your birthday but on this 'oneth' birthday I will only ask dear mama to give you what you like best - a good, moist, dirty crust and you may rub it on the floor and suck it as much as you like. Give a kiss to mama and be very good to her.

Your dear father
Holroyd Chaplin"


Christine Myers, whose godmother and foster mother was Daphne Gould nee Chaplin wrote, October 2001:
"The Chaplins were in Palace Gardens Terrace, which lies between Church St. & Kensington Gdns. I can't remember the house number. Not far from Effie's apartment at Notting Hill Gate. They moved to Holland Villas Road in 1908, when Gonaba (godmother) would have been 24. She remembered keeping guinea pigs at the PGT house, which sounds like a childhood experience, so they must have been there several years. All their married life do you suppose? Why on earth would a couple move to a house the size of 2 Holland Villas Road when their youngest is 24?! Even if she was destined to be the stay-at-home daughter. Beats me!"


Based on information in Effie Irene's scrapbook:
The Queen visited the London (Royal Free Hospital) School of Medicine for Women (a School of the University of London) in Hunter Street Brunswick Square on October 2nd 1916, to open an addition to the hospital, and Holroyd Chaplin was invited (in Block A Row 1!). He was possibly on the Council, but is not named in the press report made the following day. This was only a year before he died aged 77. Dr Garrett Anderson was one of four Council members presented to the Queen. The School was started in a small private house in Handel Street with 14 pupils in 1874 by Dr Sophia Jex-Blake, when there were only two women on the Medical Register (Miss Elizabeth Blackwell and Mrs Garrett Anderson) and no qualifying body would examine women for degrees. The first Royal Free buildings were opened by the then Prince and Princess of Wales (now King Edward and Queen Alexandra) in 1900, and by 1916 there were 1100 women on the Medical Register. Queen Mary's Hospital is associated with the Royal Free for clinical training and by 1916 other hospitals were beginning to open their doors to women (see press cutting from The Times).

From autobiographical notes by Edward Holroyd Pearce (Lord Pearce) 1989:
"Holroyd Chaplin, was a prosperous, sturdy, scholarly, bearded Victorian solicitor practising in Lincoln Inn Fields. He was the godson and nephew of Mr. Justice Holroyd. Another of his uncles was the Right Hon Acton Ayrton who was at one time a member of Gladstone's Government, and who as Minister of Works was largely responsible for the building of the Royal Courts of Justice in the Strand - which at present stands to his aesthetic discredit, but in a century will probably be considered a feather in his cap. As a boy I looked him up enthusiastically in Justin Macarthy's Short History of our Times. To my disappointment I found only one sentence about him; referred to in the index as 'Ayrton, Mr., unpopularity of'"
"Those Christmas holidays [December 1917] should have been delightful. But when we were all gathered for Christmas my grandfather, who had been bed-ridden with a stroke for many months, died. My grandmother collapsed with the reaction. My favourite Uncle was already becoming an invalid, in a fatal illness, though none of us was then aware of that. It was a dismal family reunion. Christmas shopping or any sort of gaiety seemed indecent. Everybody whispered and my sisters and brothers and I seemed perpetually in the way. It was my first funeral and it was very moving. The service was beautifully read by our cousin Nugent Hicks, who was later Bishop of Lincoln."

From The Times, 23 December 1910:

THE LATE MR H SILVER AND THE ROYAL FREE HOSPITAL

.............. your readers may be interested to know that this hospital is indebted to him for ......

I am, yours truly, Holroyd Chaplin,
Chairman ot the Weekly Board, Royal Free Hospital, Gray's Inn-road, Dec 21.

Letter to Holroyd Chaplin from the Royal Free Hospital dated 29 March 1917?:

Dear Mr Chaplin,
At Wednesday's meeting of the Weekly Board you were unanimously elected to be Vice Chairman for the coming year - and the hope was expressed that you would soon have lost the effects of your illness.
The Board will now only meet fortnightly as Bows has been called up for military service and the consequent pressure of work is very heavy upon the Office and mysef
With kindest wishes,
.........


ROYAL FREE HOSPITAL

Gray's Inn Road, London W.C.1

Of the Weekly Board for the Quarter ended 31st December, 1917.
To be submitted to the Committee of Management at a Meeting to be held on
Wednesday January 30th, 1918, at 3.30 p.m.

With feelings of deep regret the Weekly Board report the death, on Sunday 23rd December, 1917, of Mr Holroyd Chaplin, who, as a member of the Committee of Management since 1880, has been intimately associated with the progress and development of the work of the Hospital. Mr Chaplin was appointed to the Weekly Board in 1894. He was elected to be Chairman in 1907, and served in that capacity until 1912: since that year he filled the office of Vice-Chairman of the Weekly Board.
A resolution of condolence has been passed by the Weekly Board with the relatives of the late Mrs Elizabeth Garrett Anderson, MD, President of the Medical Shool, and at the Memorial Service held on 22nd December, 1917, at Christ Church, Endell Street, the Hospital was represented by Members of the Weekly Board and the Hon, Medical Staff.


From Calendar of wills, FRC:

CHAPLIN, Holroyd of 2 Holland Villas Road, Kensington, Middlesex died 23 December 1917 at 72 Edith Rd, West Kensington, Middlesex. Probate London 28 February to Euphemia Isabella Chaplin widow and the Public Trustee. Effects £55,664; Resworn £56,144.


Alan Ray-Jones writes:

I never knew Holroyd Chaplin, since he died long before I was born, but I knew briefly his wife, my grandmother 'Dear' - or perhaps I should say that she knew me, since she was 90 and I, nine. He was known to his grandchildren as Pop-bye. Why, I don't know - my uncle Jack thinks it may have had something to do with good-bye. Or perhaps 'I'll pop by' was a favourite phrase of his. My uncle Edward, in his unpublished autobiography, wrote that: "Holroyd Chaplin was a prosperous, sturdy, scholarly, bearded Victorian solicitor practising in Lincoln Inn Fields." He was friendly with (he patronised, says Uncle Jack) a number of artists, one of whom was Frank Short (later Sir Frank Short), a painter etcher who, as a teacher at the Royal College of Art, was tutor and mentor to my father, Raymond Jones, when he came to the college as a student from Lancashire. Another was Bauerle, who painted a picture of Holroyd's wife, my great grandmother Dear, and their son Nugent Chaplin. The painting is in Uncle Jack's posession, and is hung in his study at Brompton Square.
Email from Allan Life about Mr Valpy, Holroyd Chaplin's partner:

Dear Mr. Ray-Jones:

I am on the faculty of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
I have just accessed your excellent website on your family history.
This is far more inviting and more informative than most genealogical
sites.

I and my wife Page are currently writing a two-part article for the
forthcoming fall and spring issues of "The Journal of Pre-Raphaelite
Studies" on the art collector and solicitor Leonard Rowe Valpy (c.
1824-1884). Since L. R. Valpy was the senior partner of your
great-grandfather Holroyd Chaplin, we were most interested in the
documentation on your "Chaplin" page and especially fascinated by the two excellent photographs of Holroyd Chaplin. We would like to
acknowledge your website in a footnote in our article and in the
bibliography.

We would in addition to what we have learned from your site greatly
appreciate your help with four questions, Mr. Ray-Jones:

1. Have you determined the dates of birth and death of Holroyd Chaplin? (we are trying to include such information about Valpy's associates when we can).

2. Does your collection of family photographs include a photograph of
L. R. Valpy? We have not succeeded in discovering one.

3. Is there any family tradition concerning the religious outlook of
Holroyd Chaplin and his wife? Though he was an ardent collector of
Dante Gabriel Rossetti (as well as Samuel Palmer), L. R. Valpy was a
devout Anglican who was a spokesman in the 1870s for "Low Church," evangelical positions (e.g. he published a Church Association tract opposing "vestments" for Anglican clergy, specifically the chausible). Some of Valpy's friends outside the art world, such as Canon Charles Bell, shared his outlook on matters of Church practice.

4. We are of course always glad to hear of any manuscripts relating to
L. R. Valpy or indeed to the firm he maintained with your
great-grandfather at 19 Lincoln's Inn Fields. Clients of the firm
included John Ruskin, though Valpy's relations with Ruskin are not well documented. Officially, Valpy retired towards the end of 1878, but his connection with the firm continued for some years beyond that. He died of heart disease in Bath in April 1884.

Renewed thanks for making available on your website such excellent
documentation, Mr. Ray-Jones. Any additional help you give us will be
fully acknowledged in our article.

With all best wishes,

Yours sincerely,

Allan Life
Email 2 from Allan Life (1.8.2007):
Dear Alan:

You have anticipated -- and answered -- a followup question I was going to raise. It is very important to us to know that Holroyd Chaplin was an art collector and a friend of Sir Frank Short. He might have been encouraged in his collecting by L. R. Valpy, who began his own art collection in the early 1860's with watercolours by artists like James
Holland and George Price Boyce. In 1863, he established contact with Samuel Palmer, who was then in a creative and personal slump following the death of his elder son in 1861. Valpy commissioned the 8
watercolours by Palmer based on Milton's pastoral poetry that are the
major achievements of Palmer's later years; two of these designs, "The
Lonely Tower" and "The Bellman" are equally well known in etched
versions. These remarkable works resulted from regular consultation
between Valpy and Palmer; their correspondence was voluminous but
unfortunately Palmer's younger son and heir, who disliked Valpy (and a
good many other people), destroyed these letters after publishing
extracts from his father's side of the correspondence. Though Valpy
appears to have paid a fairly modest amount for these watercolours,
their current reputation and his involvement in their creation from
1864-1881 place him among the leading British art collectors of his
time.

Valpy is also known as a collector to specialists in Dante Gabriel
Rossetti (which is really where Page and I come in, though writing
about Palmer in this two-part article is a pleasure). Valpy bought
several important Rossetti drawings (including a portrait -- now
untraced -- by Rossetti of Valpy's wife) and actually was the purchaser
for a time of Rossetti's largest canvas "Dante's Dream" (now in the
Liverpool Art Gallery), though he never took possession of this huge
work. While Rossetti respected Valpy as an honest and informed
solicitor, he was less appreciative than Samuel Palmer of Valpy as a
patron -- in a number of letters he dubs him "Valpy the Vampire"!
Valpy's relations with Rossetti were further complicated by the
scheming of Rossetti's crony and erstwhile art agent Charles Augustus
Howell, with whom Valpy was involved in complicated transactions for
pictures and china.

I am not surprised by what you tell me of your great-grandfather, given
your own father's career as an artist and your brother's work as a
photographer (I have seen some of these photographs but did not realize the artist was British!). Palmer, by the way, was something of a
pioneer in painting subjects on the Cornish coast, and one his closest
friends was the "Cornish" painter J. C. Hook. Even among the holiday
folks at Margate, which he visited regularly for years, Palmer drew
meticulous studies of waves breaking on the beach.

What you tell us about the Liberal parliamentary career of one of
Holroyd Chaplin's relations through marriage is most interesting.
Valpy's own political positions are unclear, but his second elder
brother was a clergyman who fought for the working people of
Nottingham: he is actually cited with approval in Marx's "Capital."

Ruskin's dealings with Valpy are not at all clear, but the two men knew
one another and Valpy did serve as his solicitor (though his firm had
nothing to do with the notorious Ruskin-Whistler lawsuit). It is
highly probable that your great-grandfather encountered Ruskin
personally.

Renewed thanks for this information, Alan. With your permission we
would like to cite some of it in our article, and we would of course
fully acknowledge your help with our research in addition to citing
your website.

All best wishes from Page and

Allan
1911 Census: Holroyd Chaplin, retired solicitor, 71 and his wife Euphemia, 63, and two servants - cook and housemaid.
[Letter from Holroyd Chaplin (13) possibly to JEH Skinner (14). 1853]

My dear Johnny

I thank you for the book you sent me. I have read a little of it and like it very much, I have got the first volume of Cosmos, Julia the second, Agnes the third, and Louy the fourth; will you please thank Mrs Skinner for the Cosmos? I think I shall like it.

Agnes had a kitten as black as a coal and about six inches long which Ayrton brought from London in his pocket, it died suddenly and the verdict was returned of "natural death by a fit". On Friday evening I had to write some suppositious thoughts of the Duke of Wellington when re-visiting the field of Waterloo some years after the battle. I did it in the way which Louy calls very matter of fact.

Yesterday some boys came to spend the afternoon here who were boarders. Have you heard of the River Jug from Senegambia? At the zoological garden with sandy hair and long black ears. They have also set up a fish house.

Good by old fellow
It makes me bellow,
To hear you tell
Of old Maxwell.

Yours truly
Up to the sky
Holroyd Chaplin
And down agin

An extract from one of the boys’ exercise about the Duke's reminiscences.
" This tree he said by this same tree,
My horse was shot from under me
As riding telescope in hand
I viewed a certain hostile band”

This is the end
And you must lend
Your patience here
Á ce que je dire.”


Chatelard, Monday 10th August 1879

My very dear Irene,

Perhaps Nugent has shown you on his maps whereabouts Mr McGill and I are travelling: this little place will not be marked but it is near the corner where France joins Switzerland and Italy.

We got up this morning at half-past four so as to walk a good way before the sun got hot. At about 11 we stopped at an inn to get something to eat: there was no sign or name but we knew it was an inn because a bush was hung up in front of it. It was a funny little place with a cowshed on the ground floor and a ladder up to the door, but the funniest thing was that there was no one at home, so we went in and looked about to see what there was to eat and could only find eggs and ham: so we sat on a stone outside waiting for the landlady to come home.

The landlady presently came with the bundle of sticks to light the fire and made us an onion omelette, and while it was doing I drew a picture of her little girl who was nearly as big as you and gave it to her but she was so shy she would not speak.

While I have been writing this is some guns have been fired and a procession has gone by: each town has a singing club and there has been a meeting of several clubs near here to see which sings the best. This town got the prize and so it's club came back with a grand procession and as they marched singing up the street ladies threw crowns and bouquets are of flowers out to them. A long time ago a then and great many of these clubs came to London and I heard them singing at the Crystal Palace.

[Drawing] this is the policeman of the village: he is very grandly dressed and Nugent would take him for a General at least the first time he saw him. He went away before I could make a picture of him: perhaps he might have said "I see’d yer do it – come along with me” or whatever that may be in French, but I think he was too grand a person to use such language.

Today we had lunch (milk) under a fine tree in front of an inn: there was a fat old sow who rolled in the mud and six little black pigs who grunted under the table and there were some of the funniest little fowls I ever saw. Perhaps they took off their feathers because of the heat.

Your affectionate father

Holroyd Chaplin

Grand Hotel Collet,
Lyons.
5th August 1879

My dearest,

Here we are still on our tedious railway travels: tomorrow I hope we shall start from Grenoble with napsacks and a light heart tho’ much out of training: just now I am suffering from the same sort of attack that I had at Ramsgate.

Nugent will have got my instructive card from Dijon: that is a poor town instead of the interesting old place that I had imagined, and there really was nothing to see except two handsome tombs (much restored) of Dukes of Burgundy. We parted from Bert at the Rail station, he going from Dijon direct to Switzerland.

This is splendid town in the style of Paris -- long straight streets with tall stone houses, busy traffic, and open places planted with trees: it lies at the angle where the Rhone and Saone meet, so there is plenty of air: last night we stood on the bridge and watched the Rhone roaring and rushing along with a seething hissing sound like soda water: it is here about as broad as the Thames at London. There was a sort of fair yesterday evening where we looked in at one of the booths and saw some conjuring etc.

Grenoble

From Lyon we had a very hot journey here and were delighted to see snowy mountains rising before us and to feel that the long and weary rumble of the train was at an end. Crossing France from corner to corner I have been more than ever struck by its wonderful richness of cultivation: we hardly saw a rood of ground in that journey of several hundred miles, which was not carefully cultivated and cropped: and over all was the most glorious rich full sunlight and warmth.

Today has been our first walk which has not been longer than about 20 miles and we were without knapsacks as we returned here to sleep at the inn of the Three Dauphins (who they were I know not) where an inscription in the Salle a Manger states that Napoleon stayed three days on his triumphant return to Paris after escaping from Elba. Tomorrow we take our sacks and make for La Grande Chartreuse. It is a silent and vegetarian order of monks, and they always make a point of placing their convents where there is a fine view. The weather looks very uncertain but we must hope for the best.

I have been dreaming of you nearly every night. With kisses all-round (except Miss W.) Your loving husband, H. C.


Albertville, 11th August 79

My dearest,

I wonder whether you have yet written to me: if so I may get it next Friday, more than a fortnight since you left town. Did you receive safely the cheques I sent you.

We have had a hard day's walk from Chatelard, which was made the longer by our losing ourselves once or twice in some woods. After a steep climb to a height of about 4000 we got a view over the valley of the Isére, in which this town lies, towards the Alps with Mont Blanc like a giant amongst them – a head and shoulders taller than any -- it is a magnificent mass -- not a peak, but rising broadly up with offshoots on every side buttressing it up, and all was covered with snow of dazzling whiteness. It was fortunate that the air was clear and the sun bright for my first view of the monarch of mountains. It was sad to sink down from the heights to the hot hot plain where I now perspire as I write.

We are making now for the Italian frontier which we shall cross on Thursday and it will depend on the heat whether we keep on that side or go to the higher ground of Switzerland.

Tell Nugent that 8 km are equal to five miles and we walked the other day 32 km. How many miles was that?

Please send the enclosed to Mattie . You can read it of course.

Your loving husband

Holroyd Chaplin



Mosset(?), Thursday 10 a.m. 13th August 1879

My dearest,

We had a very hot day yesterday and McG was nearly knocked up: we were both (?) by insufficient food in the middle of the day so we made a long halt at midday yesterday and good meal followed by a nap, after which we went gaily up a lovely narrow valley which suddenly opened out into wide meadows surrounded by snowy peaks and resonant with the bells of cattle.

In a small village of chalets we found a primitive inn, the sitting-room of which opened out on to the refuse of a cowshed, so I made them bring the table out into the meadow and we had a meal under the open sky. Turning into a cottage before dinner I had found an old woman dressing frogs legs: they were caught she said by the reapers. She had the hind legs skinned in a basin of water and was chopping off the claws and then doubling them up like this [drawing]. I gladly accepted the offer of a dozen and found them good though a little tasteless, rather like the white meat of very young chicken.

Happily our bedroom was in a separate house and tho’ rough was clean and sweet. We rose at 4.30 and have had a fine mountain walk during which I culled these flowers for you. At this moment McG is talking to a genial old Swiss who has guessed him as a Professor and me as an "avocat" as a first shot. M’s French does not much improve.


Friday, Cormeyer, Italy

After our breakfast we toiled up the zigzag path to the top of the pass which divides France from Italy here, and the view is splendid as we looked down a valley on the left of which were Mont Blanc and the mountains of that range, with their snow and glaciers: it was a long and rather rough descent on this side of the pass - particularly when we came to the huge moraine or mountain of loose stones that had been formed by a prehistoric glacier here that must have filled the whole valley but is now shrunk up into one of the smaller and higher side valleys. We got in here as the people were in the middle of table d'hote and after a thorough wash sat down to a very different meal to the frogs legs etc. of the previous evening: it is a thoroughly Italian hotel and after dinner the people sat listening to music.

We had walked from six a.m. to 6 p.m. doing 32 miles over mountains, and feel all the better for at this morning: today we are taking things easily. I am a good deal bothered about some matters of business as to which I expected a letter here. This is quite an Italian inn but as Cormeyer is rather a central place we have come across some Englishmen -- the first we have seen for many days. Everyone seems to speak French hereabouts so my small stock of Italian has not yet come into play.

I'm so looking forward to hearing of your safe arrival at Nairn and how you are all getting on. [no sign off]



Cogne, Italy, Sunday 17 August ’79

My dear Nugent,

You see I have been catching butterflies today: these two are of a sort called "Apollo" and they are not found in England. They fly slowly, so Mr McGill and I had no difficulty in knocking them down with our sticks.

What are you about at Nairn? I have been expecting to get a letter from you. Have you caught any whales or other small fish and can you talk Scotch?

From this hotel where I am writing I can see Mont Blanc, the highest mountain in Europe as you know; it is about 25 miles from here but is very plainly seen, being quite white with snow.

The other day I saw an Englishman start to climb up it: he had two guides with him and a porter to help carry the provisions, for they were going to sleep in a hut a long way up the mountain and they would be away for two days. It is not I believe a very difficult mountain to go up, but it costs about £8 or £9 to pay the guides etc and .

Just after we had done our dinner, we heard military music, and looking out of the window were aware of one of the Alpine regiments of the Italian army marching down the village: they drew up in front of the inn and the officer in command gave each man a slip of paper or "billet" as it is called, on which was written the address of the house where he was to sleep. The people of the village are obliged by law to receive them. The officers are billetted here, and are now having their supper.

These Alpine regiments are specially drilled for climbing the mountains: the men are small and active and wear as part of their uniform a white hat this shape [drawing] to keep off the rain.

Give my love and a kiss (mind you give a kiss and not a smudge) to Irene and to Phyllis. I have not seen any baby of the same age as Phyllis who can talk Italian better than she can.

Your affectionate father,

Holroyd Chaplin



Albergo della Croce di Malta
8 La Maria Maggiore
Monday 25 August 1979

My dearest bood,

Italia! Escriva l’Italia! Thank goodness we have shaken off the British crowd and the colourless scenery and prosaic Germanism of Switzerland. For a change we had a wet day at Zermatt and got drenched in a thunderstorm, but the fine effects of cloud and mist were worth the pain. Next day we left our "innocents abroad" and had a good walk to Brieg where we slept the night before last. By the way the Matterhorn -- the great god of Zermatt -- has had his usual tragedies. The day we arrived there an American was buried who had insisted upon not being wrote to the guide and on the way down from the summit he slipped over the precipice. Again a few days after that accident two Swiss gentleman climbed up and one of their guides being taken ill was left in the refuge, but that has been built at a dizzy height on a ledge of the precipice: on their return from the summit they found him dead! The problem then was how to get the body down not only as a matter of esprit de corps amongst the guides but also because it hindered their vocation as no one would care to climb the mountain if they had to spend the night with the corpse on the way up. So whilst we were at Zermatt some of the guides climbed up and putting the body in a sack, threw it to the bottom of the mountain, which is so precipitous that it could not being carried down.

Yesterday was a fine walk over the Simplon Pass -- the road made by the great Napoleon to enable him to take cannon and his army into Italy, as to which Nugent will be able to tell you from his history. At the top of the pass is a sort of branch establishment of the monks of St Bernard, but they have not got any of the big dogs there. As we descended their side of the Alps the road lay through a splendid gorge, but mellowed with the peculiar softness and rich colours of Italy. We slept at a lovely little place called Icelle(?) and dined pleasantly in the society of a French artist and two young Scotch men who were able to enter into the conversation, German being the common language.

McG has just returned from an after dinner stroll and says "remember me to your wife and all that sort of thing." Today as we got further down the valley the heat increased to almost more than we could bear. I saw sugar cane growing in a garden but on the other hand glorious sunlight made the wide valley and the lofty hills covered with foliage look rich indeed: the tints on the hills we thought rather like those of the English lakes. A bathe in a mountain stream was a delicious luxury.

Here we are in a little Italian village quite off the beaten track and with plenty of "local colour": for footbaths -- large copper dishes -- were brought to us, such as you would have coveted. My study of (?) has made travelling here much easier. Tomorrow we shall be up early to escape the sun and walk to the head of Lago Maggiore. So now to bed at 8.30! To sleep – perchance to dream – of bood.

Your loving husband, H.C.


Tuesday

I continue my letter at a little wayside Elsteria whilst the good woman is boiling us some milk: we eat at a stone table under trellis work. A jay without a tail hops about as bold(?) as Jimmy, and take crumbs from my hand: the kitten eat crumbs and milk with avidity. Above us high on the spur of the wooded hills is the little village with its church tower.

Canobbis, Lago Maggiore

A lovely road threading about amongst wooded hills with a stream brawling far below whose pools were crystal has brought us to this village on the borders of the lake. After a dejeuner -- for we were up early and have finished our 20 miles by twelve o'clock, we are sitting in front of the lake watching a storm gathering over the mountains which has robbed as of a much looked for bathe. Boys are playing on the quay of the little miniature harbour, boats are moored in front and the wooded slopes of the mountains opposite are some two miles across the lake. A young lady who I learn is Polish and a student of music at the Milan Academy has been practising at the piano and is now trying her voice all over the house, but the muttering thunder makes her trilling very feeble. Now the head of the lake is inkey black and all the mountains are hidden whilst the lightning vibrates amongst the clouds.

[Drawings]

McG says that the only idea you will derive from the above is that the lake is not worth seeing. Now it is pouring with rain as you will see from this paper. Lucky that I made McG. turn out at 4.30 so that we are now comfortably housed. Many kisses, Yours, H. C.


Gravedona, Lake Como. Friday 29 August 1879

My dearest

I did so enjoy your letter that I received at Bellingona, a picturesque town at the end of the valley that opens out into Lake Maggiore. It has three old castles that used to be garrisoned by three different cantons of Switzerland, and the town still belongs to the Swiss as does a good deal of country between the Alps and the lakes though the people are quite Italian in language and appearance.

Yesterday we had a hard days walk of more than 12 hours - a long rough mountain paths with such views! And such air! Hot and bright but not oppressive or sultry: so hot at having set my compass down on a rock in the sun for a few minutes, it was almost unpleasantly warm to the fingers -- and that was on a mountain 6000 feet high.

We left Bellingona at sunrise and toiled up a long valley, first threading our way through the vineyards and then following the course of the stream: it is in such an excursion that one appreciates the size of these mountains and what a long way it is to the top. Near the top of the pass we were glad to find a chalet where cheese was being made and thoroughly enjoyed some hot skimmed milk. We had been walking eastward -- looking back could see the end of Lago Maggiore and far beyond it ranges of many mountains at the South end of which Monte Rosa showed grandly - and at the other end was the Jungfrau. We rested at the pass and watched a boy in charge of goats: he called to them, from fully half a mile off, with a "joddling" noise and they kept bleating in answer as if he had been their mother and trotted towards him over the rocks.

Generally one is annoyed in a mountain walk by having to dive into the valley directly after crossing a pass and so the view is lost, but yesterday tho’ we lost the view of Monte Rosa etc. the view of Lake Como and snowy mountains to the East was preserved for several hours, the path skirting along the mountain at a great height above the valley until we were just above Gravedona. Como was at its best -- the mountains clear and sharp in the bright sun with their sides of softest green, the water a turquoise green in the sun and dark purple in the shadows of the hills. The descent was by steep zigzags through vineyards and walnut trees which brought us to the village and a little Italian inn managed in an Irish happy-go-lucky style. However they fed us well and beds were clean. The waitress said she knew some French and some English but I did not find that her acquired vocabulary went beyond "oui" and “yes” which she dragged in promiscuously whenever she could.

Today we must perforce be rather (?) as we had to cross the Lake and take a diligence from here up the uninteresting and almost tropical valley of the Valtelline: so we bathed luxuiously at Gravedona had lunch and reach the shore just in time to -- be too late for the steamer. Time is an uncertain matter in these Italian places but as we had allowed about half an hour for accidents we thought the misfortune undeserved. We then hired a boat to take us across at about the same fare as the steamer - enclosed is a picture of the boat and Nugent will see that the men stand up and push against the oars instead of pulling. We were too late for the (?) diligence; rather (?) as there is another one at five p.m. when it should be cooler.

Saturday 30 August

Another bathe in Como and a long look at the "opal" tinted hills at the head of it which looked shadowy and unreal as they glowed in the afternoon sun: then at five p.m. by diligence to Sondrio -- a long rumble of five hours along straight roads with Indian corn on either side standing 10 of 12 feet high and the noise of the grasshoppers mixed with that of the wheels and the driver clacking his whip like the discharge of a pistol. As the sun set behind us the mountains were bathed in pink light and soon a planet shone like a lighthouse from the brow of the hill and the moonlight crept down the mountains sides to the bottom of the valley until it was all nearly as bright as day.

We slept at Sundrico and have had a hot little walk up here: it is the last place up this valley at which we can sleep before crossing the mountains back into Switzerland: so we put up here and have sent for a guide to arrange tomorrow's walk with him. Directly after ordering our collazione (dejeuner) I sallied out with a towel and have had such a douche under a mountain stream: the water fell on my back with as much force nearly as if a man had been thumping me. I cannot get McG. to appreciate this kind of bathing.

Black Bess was Turpin’s mare and, judging from your description of yours steed’s age, I should think you must have got hold of the identical animal. You seem to have made a very good bargain. I should like to see you and the family en route keeping Black Bess up to his pace. I have written Peckham that I shall be at Lincoln's Inn on Wednesday the 10th September. Let me know when I'm to expect you: how glad I shall be when we meet. Today I have been laughing to myself at the "uggy statue" incident at Brussels. Do you remember our room at the Hotel d’Hollande there.

Love and kisses all round including Phyllis.

Your loving husband
Holroyd Chaplin


Sils, Engadine, Monday 1st September /79


My dearest bood,

We have bid farewell to Italy and in two more days shall have ended our walk at Davos. Except that I'm looking forward to seeing you this would make me very sad. At (?), after posting my letter to you, we had an amusing evening. About ten people (Italians) were staying at the inn "en pension," the landlord sat down to dinner with us and in honour of the superintendent of gens d’armes of the province (the Captain Hastings of the district) who was on a round of inspection, had up some very choice wine. Some of the ladies could talk French and after dinner we strolled up the valley in the moonlight (don't be alarmed, they were all married and "très comme il faut".

We had engaged our guide (?) night to take us over the pass into Switzerland and got up in the dark: there were two passes and as one was shorter and commanded a better view we chose it on the guide saying it was "molto facile": at the head of the valley we ate part of our provisions by the side of a bucket of milk furnished from a chalet, and looking up at the steep rocks towering 2000 & 3000 feet above us we wondered how we should be able to make the ascent. To the guide no doubt it was "motto facile" and he walked up and down with our two knapsacks on his back and a bundle of provisions in one hand as easily as if he were going up and downstairs, but to beginners in the art of climbing it was far from pleasant. The guide put me in front and he then followed leading McG by one hand and the ascent had to be made by a series of slopes of snow, turf and rock, with precipices below them, the slopes were at about this angle [drawing] and we had to hold on with hands as well as feet.

When at the top we sat on the narrow summit and enjoyed a meal and a splendid view of snowy peaks with a glacier at our feet, and one or two mountain lakes as bright as emerald far below us. The descent down the slope of the glacier of was easy enough: the guide went on ahead sounding the snow where he feared there might be crevasses and we slid down the snowy slopes at a great pace. I should say that before I got to the top of our climb I began to feel almost at home, and to enjoy the excitement of finding footholds: it is not pleasant however when testing a ledge of rock to see it break off and hear it rolling down the mountain “rickety rock like a pebble in Carisbrook well.”

Here the climate is wonderfully fresh and cold for it is some 5000 feet above the sea, and everything is German Swiss. After talking French and trying to talk Italian for so many days Germans seems very barbarous and unnatural.

Rubric (Here read letter to Julia)

After walking down the Engadine McG had a very bad night with diarrhoea and sickness, so that I came over the pass here alone, he coming in rather later by an easier route. Compared with other places we have seen, Davos is not beautiful but it is said to be wonderfully healthy. The Mc Morlands are Scotch and have invested money in a share in this hotel: he is a clever man, a Presbyterian minister originally but has got too “broad” and gave up one of the best livings in Scotland: he is now decidedly unclerical: age about 40. The wife is ugly as sin but a very shrewd woman and aids the hotel by bringing people together, getting up excursions etc.

[separate sheet, no address or date]

Here I have found your nice long letter of 22nd August about your fellow pensionaires and with notes from Nugent and Irene: the latter has written hers carefully but Nugent might have done better. I think all your letters have come on to me as far as I can judge from the contents. Thank the children for their letters.

I'm writing this early in the morning and have been watching a light autumn mist clearing off the valley: it was golden with the early sun and then tinged with blue as it got thinner and the blue sky was seen through it: now there is not a cloud.

The people here do not seem to get up particularly early and I dare say they find it difficult to kill time. McG is revelling in a separate bedroom where I could not disturb him by early rising. Tomorrow the two McGs and I leave this for Basle: only one more days walk!! Chamois hunting has begun: it is only allowed in September. In yesterday's walk I saw four chamois hanging up by their horns in cottages -- one was still warm. I'm told that as many as 800 were shot in this district only last September.

With very kind regards to Miss W.

Your loving husband
Holroyd Chaplin

[Letter from Agnes N. Ayrton to Holroyd Chaplin, no year given, but could be 15 June 1870 since that was the year of Holroyd’s marriage.]

Near Como, June 15th

Dear Holroyd

I send you the lines you asked for some weeks ago. If I recalled rightly you had a little trouble about the meter in the first two lines of the second part. It has just occurred to me, would not the introduction of "his" (italicized) fit "the" before "deathbed," effect all that is wanting, ie it would accentuate naturally a syllable Nicholliewise as "the" sounds better forced accentuated when followed by such a word as deathbed. Now, with his deathbed. There is something (?) in accentuating his more than the syllable death that follows.

Will you tell me what is the original painting from which this photograph is taken? There is a very lovely fresco in the Brera(?) Gallery at Milan by Bernardino Luinci(?) of the Body of St Catherine carried by three angels to the sepulchre which I should imagine very probably suggested that of which theme the photograph and which it resembles; of the fresco Murray says "a lovely work, reproduced in chromo-lithography by our Arundel Society of London." Perhaps you know it, but it would not fit your nurses(?) as the other does.

June 13th

I want to know if your wedding is fixed for this autumn and if so when? I am sorry to be delayed finishing this but hope it does not matter. I will not delay it longer by (?) now but refer you to my letter to Aunt M. I must (?)impress the necessity of an immediate reply as it is by the (?) these rooms are held open for me.

Be sure you give my love to Effie when you write and with mine to yourself,

Believe me your affectionate cousin

Agnes N. Ayrton.

If Julia wishes to consult anybody about the likelihood of (?) suiting her she had letter go to (?) Weber, 10 (?) Street, Grosvenor Sq

[Overleaf, Holroyd’s poems:]

Where we shall close our eyes and die,
May we be attended by
Faith & Hope & Charity;
May an angel from above
Gently guide those trials of love,
Late we in their upward flight
All the meaner things of earth!
See we with a keener sight
Everything of heavenly worth!

But alas! for the deathbed
Alas, the troubled night,
Whence the three have mourning fled,
Scared by our affright!
Where faith has prayed for years in pain
And hope has hoped for years in vain,
Where charity has fought with scorn
From morn to eve. from eve to morn;
There mercy sheathes her guardian sword
And sheds a sad angelic tear,
She turns, does homage to her Lord,
And leaves the wretch to die in fear.

6th April 1862 H.C.



[Letters from Holroyd Chaplin to his wife, Euphemia Isabella Chaplin (‘Dear’)]

1. Norway, Bjuikam(?) 14 August 1884

My dearest,
I posted my letter of yesterday in haste after I had written to Nugent, and without enclosing a line to you, because as we came to a little river a postman met the boat and it was a convenient opportunity to get rid of the letter. On landing there was a scurry to get beds at the inn and we were successful in getting a room. The hotel accommodation here just now is much too small for the number of travellers.

I feel better: we have had a real square meal at an inn up here that has been started by the Norwegian Tourist Club: the first eatable meal since we left C(?)ama: the attraction of the place is a fine waterfall that I hear thundering though I cannot see it from the balcony where we are drinking our after-dinner coffee with an English-speaking Norwegian.

Whilst looking at the falls an elderly Russian lady yesterday managed to fall down and break her leg: she was carried to the small inn at which we slept last night, and as she will have stay there six weeks I hope she may not die of the bad cooking -- she can only speak Russian and German and the people only Norsk, so that it will not be exactly lively

Holmick
We had walked 15 miles and down the fine waterfall before dinner and then engaged a guide, one Vaur Jorgen for two days for the moderate sum of eleven shillings, he keeping himself and carrying our sacks: another ten miles has brought us to this, a solitary little fishing inn upon the borders of a dreary lake: on an island in it a couple of Englishmen have pitched a tent and are encamped for the sake of fishing: they must find it cold for we are enjoying a fire here. The scenery so far has been rather disappointing and not to be compared in interest with the Alps: it is so far like some of the dreary parts of the Highlands - rock, heather, firs and birches: the mountains are mostly rounded and have not character enough to be recognisable when seen again: all this makes it hardly possible to find our way by mountain tracks without a guide: we're pleased to be off the track here of cariole people, as there is no road to the place. Our evening meal has been trout caught by a Norwegian staying here with his wife: but for this we should have been reduced to bread and butter and milk. There is a white headed boy here called Knut. We make an early start tomorrow so I'm off to bed at 9.30 p.m.

I never saw so many magpies as in this country. If there is any truth in soothsayers there ought to be a large addition to somebody's family.



2. Norway, 15th August

I take up my pen -- as people say -- in a primitive farmhouse where we are having a meal of eggs, coffee, milk and "fladbrod" (a sort of oatcake) previous to crossing a lake which comes in our day’s March. There is a Scotch mist and it is raw and cold so that we sigh for the sunny slopes of the Alps and the exhilarating air of those parts. The people here are primitive, the young woman of the house has lighted up her pipe of very strong tobacco: McGill gallantly offered her a match, but she preferred to take a large ember from the fire and jam it into her pipe. Throughout the day the walk has been up and down over moorland and swamps and amongst birch trees: clouds low down on the mountains, the view intensely dreary. One is a good deal impressed by the scantiness of the population. Two Norwegian students who slept both in one bed in our room last night have walked with us.

Bothen, Loudag, Saturday 16th August

The above was written under the influence of bad nights, "tummy" and a kind of rheumatism which a good night and a seidlitz powder have amended. Lakes are a great feature in the scenery here: on the map anything smaller than Coniston lake is not thought worth naming even. Today we began by being rowed across a lake which stretched several miles, then a rough walk over hills, and then 16 miles of road brought us here. Last night we slept in sumptuous beds in the sitting-room of a sort of farmhouse inn. McGill was much distressed at the ‘pigge’ coming in and out to lay the breakfast whilst he got his clothes on: I told him I would protect him but his modesty was painful and the ‘pigge’ was quite innocent of the embarrassment she caused.

There are two Germans from Thuringia here and we have been having much talk. They cheer us by saying the country we are coming to is equal to the Alps: but I miss the bright sun and the busy life and intelligence of the South: there is no temptation here to loiter by the way and feel that the world is a beautiful place and mere existence is pleasure. I enclose a specimen of “fladbrod”: when fresh it is as brittle as glass, and some say about as edible, but I think that is a libel. I can't help thinking of you sealed at the top of the stairs and wonder how you are getting on: I hope you like the lodgings with the pleasant lookout on the green trees. Since I posted my last I have not come to a Post Office but expect to do so tomorrow. I'm finishing my letter tonight.

Good-bye, my dearest,
Your loving husband,
Holroyd Chaplin.


Note at the beginning - please send these round to Nugent, Ayrton, Allan.
Notepaper is headed S. Y. Argonaut and "World Travel", 5 Endsleigh Gardens, London N.W.

12th April 1907
We got away from Marseille about 3 p.m. (?) being a little delayed by the luggage which had been put in a van at Calais and sealed by the Douane so as to avoid the need of inspection in France; but first I should mention that at a gorgeously painted hall of the Gare de Paris-Lyons et Mediterranee at Paris the Tourist Coy provided us with a nice driver? at their cost to strengthen us for the night journey which passed with less tedium than might have been the case as we three (Ernest, Hillary and self) got a compartment to ourselves, our train being reserved for the Argonauts, and not invaded by the general travellers.

Luckily the sea was very smooth and we all settled down to the ship’s routine. I was relieved when my luggage was brought in to my cabin for there was a false rumour that somebody's luggage had gone astray. Peronnie is good at organising, as Nugent will remember in Norway, and he now has a cheerful and capable wife -- Ernest introduced me to various learned archaeologists and we sat at the table of one of them -- Audrey of Wellington College, who says he remembers Nugent and asked after him -- Peronnie says he remembers us on board the St Ronald but I think it improbable as he must have seen so very many passengers since then.

We kept along some miles from the coast and the entrance to Toulon was pointed out: it is a bold and rocky coast. At dinner most of the men were in evening dress: but some good & true men agreed with me that this was superfluous. I am told we number about 180. The conversation is much about the average. At dinner Peronnie announced that there would be a concert at 9 p.m. but tired with the previous night on the train I turned in at 8.30 and slept soundly for my cabin is in a quiet part and the stewards are well-trained to keep things quiet.

Today (12th) I was up betimes and enjoyed a bath with the chill off. It is a fine day, and I have been studying the changing shades of blue which the sea takes. It has been a bright day but very cool: the passengers busy with all sorts of deck games from cricket to deck quoits at which I look on, carrying about a book but as usual on shipboard find I read but little. All sorts of committees are formed. Ernest is on the Photographic Committee. An interesting talk with Dr Catoe of Liverpool University in the smoking room on discoveries at two temples to AEsculapius and the latest ideas on his worship. Mrs Lucas is a pleasant little woman and of course knows all our Tasmanian friends.

Just after breakfast we passed Xiro’ the (?) of Bonifacio, and the little island of Caprera off the Sardinian coast, where Garibaldi spent the last years of his life. Fine scenery.

13th of April. A rainy day. After lunch we sighted the Lipari islands and as many are mountains of 2000 to 3000 feet we were a long time coming up with them: Stromboli on our left was the most interesting and from the crater a little below the summit smoke streamed down the hillside and then rose into the air: it seemed to come out with more vigour about every ten minutes. There was no (?) but it was fairly clear, so that we had a good view of the Straits of Messina with the rock and town of Scylla and the mountains of Calabria powdered with snow on our left, and the mountains of Sicily on our right. Carybdis is a "tide-race" and reminded me of the Race of (?): the water was swirling and troubled for about a mile, and one could see that it might be very awkward for a small sailing boat. The bow of a wrecked steamer was appropriately in the scene. We could not see Etna owing to clouds, and as night fell we rounded the toe of Italy and steamed due East, which gave us the full benefit of a SW breeze.

14th April Sunday -
‘To all you ladies now on land
We men at sea indite,
But first would have you understand
How hard it is to write (Dorset)

A good deal of motion to lull us to sleep last night, and a very scanty attendance at breakfast in the saloon, where the empty pivot chairs were spinning round in a ghostly way. I forgot to say that last evening we had a short lecture about Athens with lantern slides from Audrey and Bosanquet, Director of the British Archaeological School in Athens, which carries out explanations. It has been raining and blowing all day, and I am closing this after dinner to post it on board this evening for dispatch from Athens tomorrow. We are due at Corinth in time to take train at 8 a.m. for Athens tomorrow morning.

Monday 15th April. When we awoke we were at anchor at the head of the Gulf of Corinth. Rain and wind still pursued us and we could only see a little way up the sides of the hills -- in fact we have not seen the sun for three days, and it is decidedly cold -- the country and the weather remind me of the Highlands of Scotland. About 50 remained on the ship, which was to go through the Canal and meet us at the Phaleron Port of Athens in the evening. The rest of us went ashore in the ship’s boats and had a very muddy walk to the little railway station where a special train was waiting for us. "Special" did not mean speed, for we did not make more than 10 miles an hour, so that it was 1.30pm before we reached Athens, were we were refreshed by a sumptuous lunch at the expense of the ship, which also provided carriages to take us wherever we wished to go. It was still pouring with rain when we got to the Museum, and there we looked in a tantalising and cursory way as time was short at the amazing beautiful statues etc that have been dug up, and the gold and other things found by Schumann at Mycenae -- Ernest taking many photos in the rooms.
Then we drove to the Acropolis, the glories of which could not be quite dimmed even by pouring rain, regardless of which Ernest did much execution with his camera, though he was perpetually telling me that the stomach of his machine had gone wrong and they would all be failures, which I do not believe. It is his way of keeping his spirits up. I expect he is now in the darkroom, developing.

We chanced upon Bosanquet expanding to some of our party, and I joined in and was glad to listen to so great an authority. The ruins are splendid, and I longed for sun, to lighten them up. Previous reading and photos made me feel quite at home. We drove past the theatre of Dionysos and the temple of Theseus to the station, from which it is a few minutes train to Phaleron where we found the ship’s boats, and so, still under umbrellas, we regained the Argonaut. I cannot pretend to have really seen Athens, but we made the most of our time, and saw something to remember.

Tuesday 16th April. A brighter day at last, and we saw the sun again soon after breakfast when we were coming up to Lesbos (now Myteleni): soon after noon we got to the little island of Tenados which as - every schoolboy knows amongst his small stock of learning - is visible from the plain of Troy, between which and the island we steamed to the north of the Hellespont. The lofty isle of (?) was further off, and on the edge of the horizon in the West there was visible the snowclad tip of Mount Athos looking like the upper half of a rising full moon -- if you measure it on a map you will see what a distance it was. From this it may be inferred that we had a clear sky: the wind has got to the north, and it is colder than ever. Going up the Hellespont we passed between two Turkish forts and were boarded and investigated by an official before we could proceed. Then we passed by a Turkish fleet lying dirty and, I am told, immovable, because some necessary parts of the machinery have been taken out and sent to Constantinople to ensure that if there were a mutiny on board, the capital could not be threatened.

From Lesbos to Abydos is certainly a good swim, but no doubt Miss Kellerman could do it as easily as Leander, Byron and Mr Allinson, who was immortalised by crossing with the post. I was forced into a match of cricket between grandfathers and granddaughters: a shameless young creature asked me at point-blank "are you a grandfather"! I don't know why she should have thought it possible. I did my best and added two 0s to our score. Hilary did no better, and we were shamefully beaten. The sun set in glory as we were getting near the sea of Marmara. The (?)-up of today has been a very spirited lecturer from one of the grandfathers -- Mr Thompson, a very learned man, on the history of the Eastern Empire. Tomorrow we shall anchor off Constantinople by sunrise, and take the city by assault with piastres.

The 17th of April 1907
We had been told overnight that the ship would pass in front of Constantinople at sunrise today. Ernest dashed up with his camera whilst I like a sluggard stuck to my berth, and when I got up at my usual hour we were anchored in the Golden Horn with a fine view, on the left, of Seraglio point and the side of the town facing that way, crowned by the Mosque of Sulemein and other mosques and minarets; on the right was the town and tower of Galata with a view of the Bosphorus towards the Black Sea.

For seeing a large town in a short two days, things are well organised on this ship. We formed into parties of about 15, to each of which the dragoman (to use a grand word for a mongrel of very mixed nationality) is allotted. On the quay we find a sufficiency of carriages: you have arranged the route beforehand and the dragoman is the useful man to rush about and marshall the carriages -- all this is covered by what was paid for "land excursions". Of course it would be much pleasanter to wander about and take over ourselves, but the saving of time and labour is enormous.
After stumbling about in deep mud our party started in five carriages in the rain -- for the ship could not organise the weather. We rattled and bumped along through crowds in jerseys, baggy breeches, now and then a turban, and often in picturesque sheepskins and rags. The yellow pariah dogs evaded our wheels unconcernedly -- nobody interferes with them, they are their own masters: look quite happy and independent -- they have a foxy nose and resemble the dingoes and other wild dogs at the zoo -- the puppies are engaging little creatures -- I will not bring one home.
So we jolted across the bridge between Pera (the European quarter) and old Stamboul. A poor bridge enough to look at but one of the most famous in the world -- the variety of race and costume is marvellous. Through mud we drew up to a new building. The Museum, in which there are some fine things. Then St Sophia received us and in capacious slippers we strode the carpeted floor and looked up into the glorious dome. The whole building, though enormously massive, conveys the idea of extraordinary lightness. You might imagine that a delicate cup had been inverted to form the roof. We passed the enclosure where the Jacuzzarias? were killed. The Mosque of Suleiman -- a smaller copy of St Sophia, the tombs & the Sultans -- a poor affair. The Bazaar -- a perfect rabbit warren said to contain 7,000 shops -- with delightful gleams of light and darkness. The weather having cleared, we climbed the Tower of Galata to enjoy a glorious view, and returned with much satisfaction to the quiet of our ship for ? is decidedly a noisy town.

[Next page missing]

Now Ernest and I can say that we have been in all four quarters of the globe.

20th April, Saturday. By about 9 a.m. we were lying off Troy and on getting to shore found houses, mules, donkeys and native carriages awaiting us, with many picturesque natives. I took a hooded carriage, something like a barrel on wheels with a hole in each side through which you creep and then lie nearly at full length -- it has two horses and can be driven over any obstacle - apart from occasional jumps it is quite comfortable. The plain is well watered. Once I saw storks about, and occasionally camels. Four miles brought us to a small hill somewhat bigger than Primrose Hill which has been deeply trenched, disclosing the remains of some 9 towns and villages one over the other, beginning with the Stone Age. Of course the remains are much mixed and most difficult to distinguish. Interest centres on the sixth or Hasmanic? city, and looking at its small size it is difficult to believe in it having been the object of so famous a war. Is it all due to the poet’s imagination and its magnifying effect? I stayed there about an hour, Ernest and other enthusiasts were there much longer. It has been a fresh and bright day and the scenery of a quiet kind enjoyable with distant view over Isla(?) and sea bounded by mountains on mainland and islands. It is about 4 miles from where we landed. I must say "the ship" does these excursions very well -- to arrange for about 170 people in a country like this must require a great deal of organisation. A ship's officer tells me that we are counted as we leave the ship and as we return, so as to ensure nobody being left behind. A discourse this evening by Dr Catoe on the monasteries of Mount Athos.
This evening we passed to north of Imbros and the sun was setting in the sea in great glory as we passed south of Samothrace, whose mountains were lost in the clouds.

21st April, Sunday. Mount Athos. This peninsula is about 50 miles by 10 and it is entirely and solidly inhabited by monks and lay brothers. No women or female animals, dogs, cats, horses etc are allowed to touch the sacred soil. I recommended the ladies on board to hold a suffragette meeting and insist on landing. When I came on deck we were opposite a few houses in the Bay of Daphne with mountains covered with brushwood rising steeply from the sea. We steamed in front of a monastery (that of Simon of the Rock) perched about 200 feet up the mountainside. It towered to many stories with irregular buildings and many galleries. We had a stiff pull up by a zigzag mule track thro’ laurel (Daphne again) and many flowering things?: the monks clanged their bells in welcome and fired salutes. The Bishop received us with ceremony in his room and ordered in monks bearing in 1st, jam and cold water; 2nd, aniseed liqueur; 3rd, a thin wine, and 4th, coffee. He could talk a little French so we conversed. Then he took us round the Church and gave us each a loaf of bread and some other trifles. As we left, the bells clanged again with greater vigour. The monks look merry and happy notwithstanding the unrelieved monotony of their society and their extremely scanty fare. This is the first visit the Argonaut has paid to Athos and I do not think they have been invaded by any large body before. They have only seen a few casual travellers and naval men. The view from the building was glorious, the sea being of the deepest sapphire.
In like manner we visited the Russian monastery, on the seashore further to the north (by the way, we were on the West of the peninsula). It is much larger, 1,300 as against 80 monks, but new and less interesting. After tea we went ashore to the Monastery of (?) which again was better, and we attended a service - in the middle of which numerous relics were produced which were quite worth seeing on account of the beauty of the gold and silver caskets in which they were encased.
About 40 of the men made a whole day's excursion visiting monasteries in the interior on foot and on mule back. Now we are on our way to Salonica.

Monday 22nd of April. Salonica, where we arrived before breakfast. It was cold yesterday but bright. Today is colder and the reverse of bright: we have had rain and the natives keep to their (?). However, as usual, the electric launch towing two boats took us nearly all ashore. The town rises like an amphitheatre encircled with old walls, but is modern like its streets. Some of the mosques, primarily churches, contain interesting mosaics, and one (of the Basilica type) of the fourth century, was very remarkable for its architecture. It was lined with marbles and the columns were evidently taken from still older buildings. The Turks had interfered very little with it and no one had attempted to restore or add to it.
Alas! The mail we were expecting has not arrived, the railway having been washed away somewhere up country by the floods. The ship has waited a little, but now the anchor is being weighed and the letters will have to come on to us to Marseille. We shall not get them until Monday, if then!
I am disappointed not to see any good sized vessels with huge lateen sails: by a natural process of development the front part of the sail has been cut off and replaced by a foresail and jib and the after part is left as a big sail with a high peak.
We have several invalids on board -- Lady Pearson (widow of a Chancery judge) who sat at my table, is down with pneumonia, a French sister engaged at Constantinople being in attendance; a lady has ricked her knee and hops about in sprints; Mrs Lucas has sprained her ankle and hobbles; there are a case of asthma and one of fever caused by a chill. We have Sir Thomas Barlow, the well-known physician on board, besides the ship's doctor.
This evening there is a lecture by Bosanquet on Volos in Thessaly, where we are due tomorrow morning.

Thursday 23rd April. We were entering the golf of Volos, Thessaly, when we got up. A raw cold morning, and there was no sun except for an hour or two at midday. In the evening it was pouring and I had to wear a macintosh over my thick pilot jacket "Oh to be in England now that April's there". However, I had a fine bracing walk among the foothills of Pelion with a party of eight who were all Scotch. ‘Our way was there’ olive yards and the hillside was covered with anemonies and ashphodels; the latter are hardly so pretty as their name -- still they are graceful, growing in a spire (if that is the right term) about 2 foot high, with a pale flower of violet white all up the stem. The top of Pelion is still covered with snow. We got underway about 4.30 and the scenery of mountains and sea was very beautiful in its grandeur, but in the absence of sun there was no colour, and I have told you how cold it was.
Tonight the young people are to have a dance, which may warm them.

Wednesday 24th April. We have spent the day in the channel between Euboea [modern Evvoia or Evia] and the mainland. It has been cold with some heavy rain in the morning. Before lunch we landed at Eretria in Euboea and saw some interesting remains of theatre, temples and baths. We climb to the acropolis and traced the remains of walls of various periods. I was with Dr Bowers, one of the best of our learned men and a very good fellow -- master of a school at Cambridge. Speaks Greek like a native, and told me he would gladly live entirely here. In the afternoon we landed on the mainland at Rhamnus where we had much rough walking and climbing to see the remains of a theatre: many of the party mounted another hill to see what is left of the temple. I was prudent and returned to the ship, whence with a good glass I could see something of it on the skyline: when the building was there it must have been a fine object from the sea. The day has improved and the landscape was beautiful with passing showers, but there was not sun enough to bring out the colour, and it is still cold. Just at sunset we passed Marathon: we could see the mountains behind but it was too dark to see the plain itself, and hard to believe it was there. A very successful day -- a warm salt bath was very refreshing when I came back. Ernest of course was well on the hunt, busy photographing. There are some iron mines at Rhamnus and as our boats were leaving the shore we saw a man connected with the mines photographing us, so the tables were turned.
There is to be a concert this evening which I do not think I shall attend.

Thursday 25th April. All day we have “ploughed the unharvested sea in our black ships". On getting up Cape Matapan with the gigantic mass of Taygetus covered with snow was in view: far the finest mountain we have seen yet. By lunch we had lost sight of land. Now that we have done our sightseeing it has been a cloudless day with a blue sea and the gently swaying motion of the ship. It is still cold - the cricket Oxford and Cambridge match was played and energetic people were busy playing off ties and narrowing down the competitions in all sorts of games, cards, draughts and deck games. I am not in any of them, but shall be pleased to subscribe for prizes: no doubt there will be a collection: for it keeps people from gossip and quarrels. Ernest has been hard at work developing and printing the very numerous views he has taken. The young people are dancing on the quarterdeck to the light of a Gibbons moon.

Friday 26th April. Warm weather at last with a clear sky and the sea a proper blue. At 6 a.m. Etna was sighted at a distance of about 100 miles, for it is nearly 11,000 feet high, and when I came on deck it was well up on the port bow with the mountains of Calabria powdered with snow on the other side. After lunch Etna loomed large with its snowy shoulders, and from the summit a small stream of smoke issued: the lower slopes were indistinct in mist and (?). What a picture Albert Goodwin would have made of it: the mountains might well laugh at the attempts of photographers. The wind - which had been south - freshened and drew down from the north as we enter the straits. Charybdis was not in quite such good form as before, when the wind was strong from the south. The captain obligingly took us close up to Scylla and from the bridge I watched the photographers in the crowd on the bow and could hear them "touching the button" -- like file-firing. When through the Straits, the wind dropped again, and it was a perfect evening. The top of Etna could just be seen above the nearer mountains across the island but it was not lighted up by the setting sun as I had hoped it might be.
The captain very civilly invited Hilary and me to have a drink in his cabin -- quite a dainty little boudoir -- before lunch. Mr Bowers discourses this evening on modern Greek life and folklore amongst the peasants -- very interesting and amusing.

Ernest very busy printing photos etc, scrubbing up a handful of coins which he got for a trifle, after pickling them in lemon juice tempered by a rusty nail. Dr Bosanquet’s recipe. Dr Gow? tells me there was a mention of poor Theodoric’s death in the Western School Mag and promises to send a copy. There is a German father, mother and grown-up son and daughter on board who are annoyed at the way in which the company devote themselves to sports all day and every day. After dark we passed Stromboli: every four or five minutes it showed a dull glow of fire from its summit -- the night was too thick to see the mountain itself.

Saturday 27th April. Steaming from Sicily to the straits of Bonifacio: land not in sight all day. I have arranged with a Mr Mansel of about my age, a former master of Marlborough, to visit some of the towns of Provence which I saw just 45 years ago. It will delay my return about a week, but it seems a pity to miss the opportunity now I am so far out, and I hate the long unbroken rail journey. The day has been devoted to the final contests in the sports and Lady Barnham is to give away the prizes this evening. Some of the games were very amusing to look at, such as the obstacle race, cockfighting (by the way, to see old Audrey in this competition might be said to "beat cockfighting"), two men bestraddling a spar fighting with pillows, each trying to make the other lose his balance, no touching the spar with hands allowed, and of course the feet not touching the ground. The game of "beanbags" is something to watch: I must describe it when we meet.

There is to be a smoking concert and for the young folk a dance. Some of the stewards seem to be selected for their musical talent. They give quite good pieces, equal as it seems to me to the band at an ordinary "at home". We have piano, cornet, violin and double bass.

Sunday 28th April. Gulf of Lyons -- we were so well up to time that Ajaccio was added to the bill of fare and we anchored in the harbour early this morning. You will see it on the west side of Corsica. Sad to say, it was pouring with rain, the mountains hidden in mist, and very cold. Much imagination was needed to divine how beautiful it must be without those drawbacks: the palm trees and orange trees helped a little. The house in which Napoleon was born is the most interesting sight in the town: a good comfortable house with the old furniture, and the sedan chair in which Ma? e Mère was hastily brought from church just in time for the little great man to be born on a sofa at home. We filled in our time looking at some very bad pictures and drinking chocolate so that we might see the papers, for we had see none later than two days after our start. Owing to an error in a telegram received by a passenger at Constantinople we had been rejoicing that three had been taken off there(?): we now gather that this is a delusion. This is about the roughest day we have had; but the passengers are getting seasoned and most of them came to dinner. Very difficult to write.
Finis.



19 Lincoln’s Inn Fields


7 June 1872


My dear Nugent,

I wish you many happy returns of to-morrow when you will have completed the first year of what I hope may be a long and a good life. As the child is father to the man, you are already a parent, and, as such you will I hope behave with becoming gravity and only chortle pleasantly.

Some day I will give you a present on your birthday but on this ‘oneth’ birthday I will only ask dear Mama to give you what you like best – a good, moist, dirty crust and you may rub it on the floor and suck it as much as you like.

Give a kiss to Mama and be very good to her.

Your dear father

Holroyd Chaplin

[Letter from Holroyd Chaplin to his wife about his Will, possibly written 5 January 1913 (the dated extract from Psalm 37,16 was on another paper headed ‘To those I leave’ in the same envelope)]

My dearest,

Most probably you will have seen by your own judgement what I am going to explain; but the idea of any misunderstanding is too painful to contemplate, so I write to tell you that the reference to possible second marriage is inserted in our settlement and in any will, not from any doubt that you would not of yourself do what is right and best for those we love, but to warn off any self-interested people who might pester you with attention. I have in any business met with cases in which it would have been better for the lady had she been thus protected.

By payment of death duties and re-investment of the trust funds at lower rates of interest as time goes on, your income will be lessened somewhat: but I believe it will be if anything more than sufficient to live in the comfort you have been accustomed to and with such additions to your comfort as age (I can hardly connect the word with you!) may require. If the income is more than you want it would be better to give any surplus equally between our children or even to arrange for them to have part of the capital. But I write this with no intention of over-riding your free will and good judgement or altering the terms of any will.

My belief in the Resurrection is so firm that I think the destination of any body of very little moment. As you know I think cremation is the right and unselfish course: but I should hesitate to hurt the feelings of any of those dear to us. Hildenborough churchyard, in or near the tomb of one of my parents seems the most natural resting place of body or ashes, but I do not wish to hamper your judgement.

God bless and keep you for many years and may we meet hereafter

Your loving husband, Holroyd Chaplin

PS: The reason for the Codicil of August 1911 is that I had not sufficiently allowed you the income you will have from the Settlement I made on you and for the devise(?) of the house to you.

To those I leave:

'O tarry thou the Lord's leisure: be strong and he shall comfort thine heart: and put thou thy trust in the Lord'. Psalm 37,16. (HC. 5 January 1913)

Biography
"A prosperous, sturdy, scholarly, bearded Victorian solicitor." Report on Chaplin (aged 9) from Eagle House:
Month ending: June 9, 1849
Latin and Greek: His progress is very fair, but I think he might do better.
English lessons:
Mathematics:
French:
Place in Class of 15 boys: Week 1, 4th; Week 2, 6th; Week 3, 3rd; Week 4, 4th.
General conduct: Far too noisy; but in other respects, a good boy.
Note: It is particularly requested, that no Boys be invited out, during the half-year, unless the above report be favourable.


1851 Census:

Source: HO107/1615, Tunbridge - Folio 30 page 53 - household schedule number 183 - GSU number 193516.

Holroyd Chaplin Boarder 11 Born Warwickshire, Edgebaston.

There were 43 boarders, all boys, and the head of Tonbridge School was James Ina? Welldon, born abt 1813, at St Mary's, Cambridgeshire.

1861 Census:

RG 9/85 Christchurch, St Marylebone Folio 68 Page 43 (Municipal Ward of Dorset Square and Regent's Park)

35 Blandford Square

Holroyd Chaplin Head Unm 21 Solicitor's Clerk Born Warwickshire, Edgbaston
Julia M Chaplin Sister Unm 24 Born Warwickshire, Edgbaston
Louisa S Chaplin Sister Unm 22 Born Warwickshire, Edgbaston
Ayrton Chaplin Brother Unm 18 Born Warwickshire, Edgbaston
Matilda Chaplin Sister Unm 14 Scholar Born France, Honfleur (British Subject)
Samuel H Feild Uncle Married 31 Incumbent, Hurdsfield Born Nothamptonshire
Ellen S A Feild Cousin Unm 17 Born Middlesex, Camden Town
Apollonia F LorenzoServ Unm 21 Domestic servant Born Prussia, Kirchberg (British Subject)
Charlotte White Serv Unm 21 Cook Domestic Born Sussex, Torrington


An entry in the London Post Office Directory (Law) for 1871? reads: "Chaplin, Holroyd (firm Valpy & Chaplin), 19 Lincoln's inn fields WC; residence, 21 Westbourne park villas W."


1871 Census:

21 Westbourne Park Villas, W, Paddington, London Middlesex:

Holroyd Chaplin Mar 30 Solicitor Born Warwickshire, Edgbaston
Euphemia Isabella Chaplin Mar 23 Born Sussex, Brighton
Selina Evans Servant Unm 21 Cook Devon, Branston


1881 Census:

29 Palace Gardens Terrace, Kensington, London, Middlesex:

Holroyd Chaplin Mar 40 Born Edgbaston, Warwickshire
Euphemia I Chaplin Mar 32 Born Brighton, Sussex
Phyllis Chaplin Unm 1 Born Kensington
Theodorick Chaplin Unm 1m Born Kensington
Jessie McKenzie Unm 30 Born Inverness, Scotland
Eliza Austin (Servant?) Wid 27 Born Wool, Dorset
Fanny Denby (Servant?) Unm 23 Born Bricklehampton, Worcestershire

1891 Census:

29 Palace Gardens Terrace:

Holroyd Chaplin Head Mar [50] Solicitor Born Warwickshire, Edgbaston
Euphemia I Chaplin Wife Mar 44 Born Sussex, Brighton
Allan N Chaplin Son S 19 Articled clerk to solicitor Born London, Paddington
Irene K Chaplin Dau S 18 Scholar do
Phyllis Chaplin Dau 11 do Born London, Kensington
Theodoric Chaplin Son 10 do do
Daphne Chaplin Dau 6 do Born Broadstairs, Kent
Catarina Gogalean Servant S 25 Housemaid Born Wurtenburg, Germany
Flora(?) Humby(?) Servant S 21 Cook Born Wiltshire, Salisbury

1901 Census:

29 Palace Gardens Terrace, church St Mary Abbotts:

Holroyd Chaplin Mar 61 Born Edgbaston, Warwickshire
Euphemia Chaplin Mar 53 Born Brighton
Phyllis Chaplin Dau 21 Born Kensington
Theodore Chaplin Son 20 Born Kensington
Daphne Chaplin Dau 16 Born Broadstairs, Kent
Ellen Saunders Servant 24 Born Buckinghamshire

Letter from John Clarke Chaplin to Acton Ayrton, August 1847:

Holroyd: considered very much like you and Matilda, reserved and very thoughtful and somewhat absent, a quiet and mild boy -- unambitious and not very robust, indeed mainly for his health on Thursday (fifth inst) we left him at boarding school here (Miss Miller's Montpellier Road) preparatory to his going to the Reverend E Wickham's at Hammersmith where there are 130 boys. Mr W. is Brother of my Brother-in-law Revd F. Wickham who is second master at Winchester. Holroyd is rather backward in reading etc but has a good deal of general Information about history etc. -- but as you know he must have the dry rudiments of learning drummed into him.


Letter to his first child, celebrating Nugent's first birthday:
"My dear Nugent,
I wish you many happy returns of to-morrow when you will have completed the first year of what I hope may be a long and a good life. As the child is father to the man, you are already a parent, and, as such, you will I hope behave with becoming gravity and only chortle pleasantly. Some day I will give you a present on your birthday but on this 'oneth' birthday I will only ask dear mama to give you what you like best - a good, moist, dirty crust and you may rub it on the floor and suck it as much as you like. Give a kiss to mama and be very good to her.

Your dear father
Holroyd Chaplin"


Christine Myers, whose godmother and foster mother was Daphne Gould nee Chaplin wrote, October 2001:
"The Chaplins were in Palace Gardens Terrace, which lies between Church St. & Kensington Gdns. I can't remember the house number. Not far from Effie's apartment at Notting Hill Gate. They moved to Holland Villas Road in 1908, when Gonaba (godmother) would have been 24. She remembered keeping guinea pigs at the PGT house, which sounds like a childhood experience, so they must have been there several years. All their married life do you suppose? Why on earth would a couple move to a house the size of 2 Holland Villas Road when their youngest is 24?! Even if she was destined to be the stay-at-home daughter. Beats me!"


Based on information in Effie Irene's scrapbook:
The Queen visited the London (Royal Free Hospital) School of Medicine for Women (a School of the University of London) in Hunter Street Brunswick Square on October 2nd 1916, to open an addition to the hospital, and Holroyd Chaplin was invited (in Block A Row 1!). He was possibly on the Council, but is not named in the press report made the following day. This was only a year before he died aged 77. Dr Garrett Anderson was one of four Council members presented to the Queen. The School was started in a small private house in Handel Street with 14 pupils in 1874 by Dr Sophia Jex-Blake, when there were only two women on the Medical Register (Miss Elizabeth Blackwell and Mrs Garrett Anderson) and no qualifying body would examine women for degrees. The first Royal Free buildings were opened by the then Prince and Princess of Wales (now King Edward and Queen Alexandra) in 1900, and by 1916 there were 1100 women on the Medical Register. Queen Mary's Hospital is associated with the Royal Free for clinical training and by 1916 other hospitals were beginning to open their doors to women (see press cutting from The Times).

From autobiographical notes by Edward Holroyd Pearce (Lord Pearce) 1989:
"Holroyd Chaplin, was a prosperous, sturdy, scholarly, bearded Victorian solicitor practising in Lincoln Inn Fields. He was the godson and nephew of Mr. Justice Holroyd. Another of his uncles was the Right Hon Acton Ayrton who was at one time a member of Gladstone's Government, and who as Minister of Works was largely responsible for the building of the Royal Courts of Justice in the Strand - which at present stands to his aesthetic discredit, but in a century will probably be considered a feather in his cap. As a boy I looked him up enthusiastically in Justin Macarthy's Short History of our Times. To my disappointment I found only one sentence about him; referred to in the index as 'Ayrton, Mr., unpopularity of'"
"Those Christmas holidays [December 1917] should have been delightful. But when we were all gathered for Christmas my grandfather, who had been bed-ridden with a stroke for many months, died. My grandmother collapsed with the reaction. My favourite Uncle was already becoming an invalid, in a fatal illness, though none of us was then aware of that. It was a dismal family reunion. Christmas shopping or any sort of gaiety seemed indecent. Everybody whispered and my sisters and brothers and I seemed perpetually in the way. It was my first funeral and it was very moving. The service was beautifully read by our cousin Nugent Hicks, who was later Bishop of Lincoln."

From The Times, 23 December 1910:

THE LATE MR H SILVER AND THE ROYAL FREE HOSPITAL

.............. your readers may be interested to know that this hospital is indebted to him for ......

I am, yours truly, Holroyd Chaplin,
Chairman ot the Weekly Board, Royal Free Hospital, Gray's Inn-road, Dec 21.

Letter to Holroyd Chaplin from the Royal Free Hospital dated 29 March 1917?:

Dear Mr Chaplin,
At Wednesday's meeting of the Weekly Board you were unanimously elected to be Vice Chairman for the coming year - and the hope was expressed that you would soon have lost the effects of your illness.
The Board will now only meet fortnightly as Bows has been called up for military service and the consequent pressure of work is very heavy upon the Office and mysef
With kindest wishes,
.........


ROYAL FREE HOSPITAL

Gray's Inn Road, London W.C.1

Of the Weekly Board for the Quarter ended 31st December, 1917.
To be submitted to the Committee of Management at a Meeting to be held on
Wednesday January 30th, 1918, at 3.30 p.m.

With feelings of deep regret the Weekly Board report the death, on Sunday 23rd December, 1917, of Mr Holroyd Chaplin, who, as a member of the Committee of Management since 1880, has been intimately associated with the progress and development of the work of the Hospital. Mr Chaplin was appointed to the Weekly Board in 1894. He was elected to be Chairman in 1907, and served in that capacity until 1912: since that year he filled the office of Vice-Chairman of the Weekly Board.
A resolution of condolence has been passed by the Weekly Board with the relatives of the late Mrs Elizabeth Garrett Anderson, MD, President of the Medical Shool, and at the Memorial Service held on 22nd December, 1917, at Christ Church, Endell Street, the Hospital was represented by Members of the Weekly Board and the Hon, Medical Staff.


From Calendar of wills, FRC:

CHAPLIN, Holroyd of 2 Holland Villas Road, Kensington, Middlesex died 23 December 1917 at 72 Edith Rd, West Kensington, Middlesex. Probate London 28 February to Euphemia Isabella Chaplin widow and the Public Trustee. Effects £55,664; Resworn £56,144.


Alan Ray-Jones writes:

I never knew Holroyd Chaplin, since he died long before I was born, but I knew briefly his wife, my grandmother 'Dear' - or perhaps I should say that she knew me, since she was 90 and I, nine. He was known to his grandchildren as Pop-bye. Why, I don't know - my uncle Jack thinks it may have had something to do with good-bye. Or perhaps 'I'll pop by' was a favourite phrase of his. My uncle Edward, in his unpublished autobiography, wrote that: "Holroyd Chaplin was a prosperous, sturdy, scholarly, bearded Victorian solicitor practising in Lincoln Inn Fields." He was friendly with (he patronised, says Uncle Jack) a number of artists, one of whom was Frank Short (later Sir Frank Short), a painter etcher who, as a teacher at the Royal College of Art, was tutor and mentor to my father, Raymond Jones, when he came to the college as a student from Lancashire. Another was Bauerle, who painted a picture of Holroyd's wife, my great grandmother Dear, and their son Nugent Chaplin. The painting is in Uncle Jack's posession, and is hung in his study at Brompton Square. Email from Allan Life about Mr Valpy, Holroyd Chaplin's partner:

Dear Mr. Ray-Jones:

I am on the faculty of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
I have just accessed your excellent website on your family history.
This is far more inviting and more informative than most genealogical
sites.

I and my wife Page are currently writing a two-part article for the
forthcoming fall and spring issues of "The Journal of Pre-Raphaelite
Studies" on the art collector and solicitor Leonard Rowe Valpy (c.
1824-1884). Since L. R. Valpy was the senior partner of your
great-grandfather Holroyd Chaplin, we were most interested in the
documentation on your "Chaplin" page and especially fascinated by the two excellent photographs of Holroyd Chaplin. We would like to
acknowledge your website in a footnote in our article and in the
bibliography.

We would in addition to what we have learned from your site greatly
appreciate your help with four questions, Mr. Ray-Jones:

1. Have you determined the dates of birth and death of Holroyd Chaplin? (we are trying to include such information about Valpy's associates when we can).

2. Does your collection of family photographs include a photograph of
L. R. Valpy? We have not succeeded in discovering one.

3. Is there any family tradition concerning the religious outlook of
Holroyd Chaplin and his wife? Though he was an ardent collector of
Dante Gabriel Rossetti (as well as Samuel Palmer), L. R. Valpy was a
devout Anglican who was a spokesman in the 1870s for "Low Church," evangelical positions (e.g. he published a Church Association tract opposing "vestments" for Anglican clergy, specifically the chausible). Some of Valpy's friends outside the art world, such as Canon Charles Bell, shared his outlook on matters of Church practice.

4. We are of course always glad to hear of any manuscripts relating to
L. R. Valpy or indeed to the firm he maintained with your
great-grandfather at 19 Lincoln's Inn Fields. Clients of the firm
included John Ruskin, though Valpy's relations with Ruskin are not well documented. Officially, Valpy retired towards the end of 1878, but his connection with the firm continued for some years beyond that. He died of heart disease in Bath in April 1884.

Renewed thanks for making available on your website such excellent
documentation, Mr. Ray-Jones. Any additional help you give us will be
fully acknowledged in our article.

With all best wishes,

Yours sincerely,

Allan Life Email 2 from Allan Life (1.8.2007):
Dear Alan:

You have anticipated -- and answered -- a followup question I was going to raise. It is very important to us to know that Holroyd Chaplin was an art collector and a friend of Sir Frank Short. He might have been encouraged in his collecting by L. R. Valpy, who began his own art collection in the early 1860's with watercolours by artists like James
Holland and George Price Boyce. In 1863, he established contact with Samuel Palmer, who was then in a creative and personal slump following the death of his elder son in 1861. Valpy commissioned the 8
watercolours by Palmer based on Milton's pastoral poetry that are the
major achievements of Palmer's later years; two of these designs, "The
Lonely Tower" and "The Bellman" are equally well known in etched
versions. These remarkable works resulted from regular consultation
between Valpy and Palmer; their correspondence was voluminous but
unfortunately Palmer's younger son and heir, who disliked Valpy (and a
good many other people), destroyed these letters after publishing
extracts from his father's side of the correspondence. Though Valpy
appears to have paid a fairly modest amount for these watercolours,
their current reputation and his involvement in their creation from
1864-1881 place him among the leading British art collectors of his
time.

Valpy is also known as a collector to specialists in Dante Gabriel
Rossetti (which is really where Page and I come in, though writing
about Palmer in this two-part article is a pleasure). Valpy bought
several important Rossetti drawings (including a portrait -- now
untraced -- by Rossetti of Valpy's wife) and actually was the purchaser
for a time of Rossetti's largest canvas "Dante's Dream" (now in the
Liverpool Art Gallery), though he never took possession of this huge
work. While Rossetti respected Valpy as an honest and informed
solicitor, he was less appreciative than Samuel Palmer of Valpy as a
patron -- in a number of letters he dubs him "Valpy the Vampire"!
Valpy's relations with Rossetti were further complicated by the
scheming of Rossetti's crony and erstwhile art agent Charles Augustus
Howell, with whom Valpy was involved in complicated transactions for
pictures and china.

I am not surprised by what you tell me of your great-grandfather, given
your own father's career as an artist and your brother's work as a
photographer (I have seen some of these photographs but did not realize the artist was British!). Palmer, by the way, was something of a
pioneer in painting subjects on the Cornish coast, and one his closest
friends was the "Cornish" painter J. C. Hook. Even among the holiday
folks at Margate, which he visited regularly for years, Palmer drew
meticulous studies of waves breaking on the beach.

What you tell us about the Liberal parliamentary career of one of
Holroyd Chaplin's relations through marriage is most interesting.
Valpy's own political positions are unclear, but his second elder
brother was a clergyman who fought for the working people of
Nottingham: he is actually cited with approval in Marx's "Capital."

Ruskin's dealings with Valpy are not at all clear, but the two men knew
one another and Valpy did serve as his solicitor (though his firm had
nothing to do with the notorious Ruskin-Whistler lawsuit). It is
highly probable that your great-grandfather encountered Ruskin
personally.

Renewed thanks for this information, Alan. With your permission we
would like to cite some of it in our article, and we would of course
fully acknowledge your help with our research in addition to citing
your website.

All best wishes from Page and

Allan 1911 Census: Holroyd Chaplin, retired solicitor, 71 and his wife Euphemia, 63, and two servants - cook and housemaid. [Letter from Holroyd Chaplin (13) possibly to JEH Skinner (14). 1853]

My dear Johnny

I thank you for the book you sent me. I have read a little of it and like it very much, I have got the first volume of Cosmos, Julia the second, Agnes the third, and Louy the fourth; will you please thank Mrs Skinner for the Cosmos? I think I shall like it.

Agnes had a kitten as black as a coal and about six inches long which Ayrton brought from London in his pocket, it died suddenly and the verdict was returned of "natural death by a fit". On Friday evening I had to write some suppositious thoughts of the Duke of Wellington when re-visiting the field of Waterloo some years after the battle. I did it in the way which Louy calls very matter of fact.

Yesterday some boys came to spend the afternoon here who were boarders. Have you heard of the River Jug from Senegambia? At the zoological garden with sandy hair and long black ears. They have also set up a fish house.

Good by old fellow
It makes me bellow,
To hear you tell
Of old Maxwell.

Yours truly
Up to the sky
Holroyd Chaplin
And down agin

An extract from one of the boys’ exercise about the Duke's reminiscences.
" This tree he said by this same tree,
My horse was shot from under me
As riding telescope in hand
I viewed a certain hostile band”

This is the end
And you must lend
Your patience here
Á ce que je dire.”

Chatelard, Monday 10th August 1879

My very dear Irene,

Perhaps Nugent has shown you on his maps whereabouts Mr McGill and I are travelling: this little place will not be marked but it is near the corner where France joins Switzerland and Italy.

We got up this morning at half-past four so as to walk a good way before the sun got hot. At about 11 we stopped at an inn to get something to eat: there was no sign or name but we knew it was an inn because a bush was hung up in front of it. It was a funny little place with a cowshed on the ground floor and a ladder up to the door, but the funniest thing was that there was no one at home, so we went in and looked about to see what there was to eat and could only find eggs and ham: so we sat on a stone outside waiting for the landlady to come home.

The landlady presently came with the bundle of sticks to light the fire and made us an onion omelette, and while it was doing I drew a picture of her little girl who was nearly as big as you and gave it to her but she was so shy she would not speak.

While I have been writing this is some guns have been fired and a procession has gone by: each town has a singing club and there has been a meeting of several clubs near here to see which sings the best. This town got the prize and so it's club came back with a grand procession and as they marched singing up the street ladies threw crowns and bouquets are of flowers out to them. A long time ago a then and great many of these clubs came to London and I heard them singing at the Crystal Palace.

[Drawing] this is the policeman of the village: he is very grandly dressed and Nugent would take him for a General at least the first time he saw him. He went away before I could make a picture of him: perhaps he might have said "I see’d yer do it – come along with me” or whatever that may be in French, but I think he was too grand a person to use such language.

Today we had lunch (milk) under a fine tree in front of an inn: there was a fat old sow who rolled in the mud and six little black pigs who grunted under the table and there were some of the funniest little fowls I ever saw. Perhaps they took off their feathers because of the heat.

Your affectionate father

Holroyd Chaplin
Grand Hotel Collet,
Lyons.
5th August 1879

My dearest,

Here we are still on our tedious railway travels: tomorrow I hope we shall start from Grenoble with napsacks and a light heart tho’ much out of training: just now I am suffering from the same sort of attack that I had at Ramsgate.

Nugent will have got my instructive card from Dijon: that is a poor town instead of the interesting old place that I had imagined, and there really was nothing to see except two handsome tombs (much restored) of Dukes of Burgundy. We parted from Bert at the Rail station, he going from Dijon direct to Switzerland.

This is splendid town in the style of Paris -- long straight streets with tall stone houses, busy traffic, and open places planted with trees: it lies at the angle where the Rhone and Saone meet, so there is plenty of air: last night we stood on the bridge and watched the Rhone roaring and rushing along with a seething hissing sound like soda water: it is here about as broad as the Thames at London. There was a sort of fair yesterday evening where we looked in at one of the booths and saw some conjuring etc.

Grenoble

From Lyon we had a very hot journey here and were delighted to see snowy mountains rising before us and to feel that the long and weary rumble of the train was at an end. Crossing France from corner to corner I have been more than ever struck by its wonderful richness of cultivation: we hardly saw a rood of ground in that journey of several hundred miles, which was not carefully cultivated and cropped: and over all was the most glorious rich full sunlight and warmth.

Today has been our first walk which has not been longer than about 20 miles and we were without knapsacks as we returned here to sleep at the inn of the Three Dauphins (who they were I know not) where an inscription in the Salle a Manger states that Napoleon stayed three days on his triumphant return to Paris after escaping from Elba. Tomorrow we take our sacks and make for La Grande Chartreuse. It is a silent and vegetarian order of monks, and they always make a point of placing their convents where there is a fine view. The weather looks very uncertain but we must hope for the best.

I have been dreaming of you nearly every night. With kisses all-round (except Miss W.) Your loving husband, H. C.


Albertville, 11th August 79

My dearest,

I wonder whether you have yet written to me: if so I may get it next Friday, more than a fortnight since you left town. Did you receive safely the cheques I sent you.

We have had a hard day's walk from Chatelard, which was made the longer by our losing ourselves once or twice in some woods. After a steep climb to a height of about 4000 we got a view over the valley of the Isére, in which this town lies, towards the Alps with Mont Blanc like a giant amongst them – a head and shoulders taller than any -- it is a magnificent mass -- not a peak, but rising broadly up with offshoots on every side buttressing it up, and all was covered with snow of dazzling whiteness. It was fortunate that the air was clear and the sun bright for my first view of the monarch of mountains. It was sad to sink down from the heights to the hot hot plain where I now perspire as I write.

We are making now for the Italian frontier which we shall cross on Thursday and it will depend on the heat whether we keep on that side or go to the higher ground of Switzerland.

Tell Nugent that 8 km are equal to five miles and we walked the other day 32 km. How many miles was that?

Please send the enclosed to Mattie . You can read it of course.

Your loving husband

Holroyd Chaplin



Mosset(?), Thursday 10 a.m. 13th August 1879

My dearest,

We had a very hot day yesterday and McG was nearly knocked up: we were both (?) by insufficient food in the middle of the day so we made a long halt at midday yesterday and good meal followed by a nap, after which we went gaily up a lovely narrow valley which suddenly opened out into wide meadows surrounded by snowy peaks and resonant with the bells of cattle.

In a small village of chalets we found a primitive inn, the sitting-room of which opened out on to the refuse of a cowshed, so I made them bring the table out into the meadow and we had a meal under the open sky. Turning into a cottage before dinner I had found an old woman dressing frogs legs: they were caught she said by the reapers. She had the hind legs skinned in a basin of water and was chopping off the claws and then doubling them up like this [drawing]. I gladly accepted the offer of a dozen and found them good though a little tasteless, rather like the white meat of very young chicken.

Happily our bedroom was in a separate house and tho’ rough was clean and sweet. We rose at 4.30 and have had a fine mountain walk during which I culled these flowers for you. At this moment McG is talking to a genial old Swiss who has guessed him as a Professor and me as an "avocat" as a first shot. M’s French does not much improve.


Friday, Cormeyer, Italy

After our breakfast we toiled up the zigzag path to the top of the pass which divides France from Italy here, and the view is splendid as we looked down a valley on the left of which were Mont Blanc and the mountains of that range, with their snow and glaciers: it was a long and rather rough descent on this side of the pass - particularly when we came to the huge moraine or mountain of loose stones that had been formed by a prehistoric glacier here that must have filled the whole valley but is now shrunk up into one of the smaller and higher side valleys. We got in here as the people were in the middle of table d'hote and after a thorough wash sat down to a very different meal to the frogs legs etc. of the previous evening: it is a thoroughly Italian hotel and after dinner the people sat listening to music.

We had walked from six a.m. to 6 p.m. doing 32 miles over mountains, and feel all the better for at this morning: today we are taking things easily. I am a good deal bothered about some matters of business as to which I expected a letter here. This is quite an Italian inn but as Cormeyer is rather a central place we have come across some Englishmen -- the first we have seen for many days. Everyone seems to speak French hereabouts so my small stock of Italian has not yet come into play.

I'm so looking forward to hearing of your safe arrival at Nairn and how you are all getting on. [no sign off]



Cogne, Italy, Sunday 17 August ’79

My dear Nugent,

You see I have been catching butterflies today: these two are of a sort called "Apollo" and they are not found in England. They fly slowly, so Mr McGill and I had no difficulty in knocking them down with our sticks.

What are you about at Nairn? I have been expecting to get a letter from you. Have you caught any whales or other small fish and can you talk Scotch?

From this hotel where I am writing I can see Mont Blanc, the highest mountain in Europe as you know; it is about 25 miles from here but is very plainly seen, being quite white with snow.

The other day I saw an Englishman start to climb up it: he had two guides with him and a porter to help carry the provisions, for they were going to sleep in a hut a long way up the mountain and they would be away for two days. It is not I believe a very difficult mountain to go up, but it costs about £8 or £9 to pay the guides etc and .

Just after we had done our dinner, we heard military music, and looking out of the window were aware of one of the Alpine regiments of the Italian army marching down the village: they drew up in front of the inn and the officer in command gave each man a slip of paper or "billet" as it is called, on which was written the address of the house where he was to sleep. The people of the village are obliged by law to receive them. The officers are billetted here, and are now having their supper.

These Alpine regiments are specially drilled for climbing the mountains: the men are small and active and wear as part of their uniform a white hat this shape [drawing] to keep off the rain.

Give my love and a kiss (mind you give a kiss and not a smudge) to Irene and to Phyllis. I have not seen any baby of the same age as Phyllis who can talk Italian better than she can.

Your affectionate father,

Holroyd Chaplin



Albergo della Croce di Malta
8 La Maria Maggiore
Monday 25 August 1979

My dearest bood,

Italia! Escriva l’Italia! Thank goodness we have shaken off the British crowd and the colourless scenery and prosaic Germanism of Switzerland. For a change we had a wet day at Zermatt and got drenched in a thunderstorm, but the fine effects of cloud and mist were worth the pain. Next day we left our "innocents abroad" and had a good walk to Brieg where we slept the night before last. By the way the Matterhorn -- the great god of Zermatt -- has had his usual tragedies. The day we arrived there an American was buried who had insisted upon not being wrote to the guide and on the way down from the summit he slipped over the precipice. Again a few days after that accident two Swiss gentleman climbed up and one of their guides being taken ill was left in the refuge, but that has been built at a dizzy height on a ledge of the precipice: on their return from the summit they found him dead! The problem then was how to get the body down not only as a matter of esprit de corps amongst the guides but also because it hindered their vocation as no one would care to climb the mountain if they had to spend the night with the corpse on the way up. So whilst we were at Zermatt some of the guides climbed up and putting the body in a sack, threw it to the bottom of the mountain, which is so precipitous that it could not being carried down.

Yesterday was a fine walk over the Simplon Pass -- the road made by the great Napoleon to enable him to take cannon and his army into Italy, as to which Nugent will be able to tell you from his history. At the top of the pass is a sort of branch establishment of the monks of St Bernard, but they have not got any of the big dogs there. As we descended their side of the Alps the road lay through a splendid gorge, but mellowed with the peculiar softness and rich colours of Italy. We slept at a lovely little place called Icelle(?) and dined pleasantly in the society of a French artist and two young Scotch men who were able to enter into the conversation, German being the common language.

McG has just returned from an after dinner stroll and says "remember me to your wife and all that sort of thing." Today as we got further down the valley the heat increased to almost more than we could bear. I saw sugar cane growing in a garden but on the other hand glorious sunlight made the wide valley and the lofty hills covered with foliage look rich indeed: the tints on the hills we thought rather like those of the English lakes. A bathe in a mountain stream was a delicious luxury.

Here we are in a little Italian village quite off the beaten track and with plenty of "local colour": for footbaths -- large copper dishes -- were brought to us, such as you would have coveted. My study of (?) has made travelling here much easier. Tomorrow we shall be up early to escape the sun and walk to the head of Lago Maggiore. So now to bed at 8.30! To sleep – perchance to dream – of bood.

Your loving husband, H.C.


Tuesday

I continue my letter at a little wayside Elsteria whilst the good woman is boiling us some milk: we eat at a stone table under trellis work. A jay without a tail hops about as bold(?) as Jimmy, and take crumbs from my hand: the kitten eat crumbs and milk with avidity. Above us high on the spur of the wooded hills is the little village with its church tower.

Canobbis, Lago Maggiore

A lovely road threading about amongst wooded hills with a stream brawling far below whose pools were crystal has brought us to this village on the borders of the lake. After a dejeuner -- for we were up early and have finished our 20 miles by twelve o'clock, we are sitting in front of the lake watching a storm gathering over the mountains which has robbed as of a much looked for bathe. Boys are playing on the quay of the little miniature harbour, boats are moored in front and the wooded slopes of the mountains opposite are some two miles across the lake. A young lady who I learn is Polish and a student of music at the Milan Academy has been practising at the piano and is now trying her voice all over the house, but the muttering thunder makes her trilling very feeble. Now the head of the lake is inkey black and all the mountains are hidden whilst the lightning vibrates amongst the clouds.

[Drawings]

McG says that the only idea you will derive from the above is that the lake is not worth seeing. Now it is pouring with rain as you will see from this paper. Lucky that I made McG. turn out at 4.30 so that we are now comfortably housed. Many kisses, Yours, H. C.


Gravedona, Lake Como. Friday 29 August 1879

My dearest

I did so enjoy your letter that I received at Bellingona, a picturesque town at the end of the valley that opens out into Lake Maggiore. It has three old castles that used to be garrisoned by three different cantons of Switzerland, and the town still belongs to the Swiss as does a good deal of country between the Alps and the lakes though the people are quite Italian in language and appearance.

Yesterday we had a hard days walk of more than 12 hours - a long rough mountain paths with such views! And such air! Hot and bright but not oppressive or sultry: so hot at having set my compass down on a rock in the sun for a few minutes, it was almost unpleasantly warm to the fingers -- and that was on a mountain 6000 feet high.

We left Bellingona at sunrise and toiled up a long valley, first threading our way through the vineyards and then following the course of the stream: it is in such an excursion that one appreciates the size of these mountains and what a long way it is to the top. Near the top of the pass we were glad to find a chalet where cheese was being made and thoroughly enjoyed some hot skimmed milk. We had been walking eastward -- looking back could see the end of Lago Maggiore and far beyond it ranges of many mountains at the South end of which Monte Rosa showed grandly - and at the other end was the Jungfrau. We rested at the pass and watched a boy in charge of goats: he called to them, from fully half a mile off, with a "joddling" noise and they kept bleating in answer as if he had been their mother and trotted towards him over the rocks.

Generally one is annoyed in a mountain walk by having to dive into the valley directly after crossing a pass and so the view is lost, but yesterday tho’ we lost the view of Monte Rosa etc. the view of Lake Como and snowy mountains to the East was preserved for several hours, the path skirting along the mountain at a great height above the valley until we were just above Gravedona. Como was at its best -- the mountains clear and sharp in the bright sun with their sides of softest green, the water a turquoise green in the sun and dark purple in the shadows of the hills. The descent was by steep zigzags through vineyards and walnut trees which brought us to the village and a little Italian inn managed in an Irish happy-go-lucky style. However they fed us well and beds were clean. The waitress said she knew some French and some English but I did not find that her acquired vocabulary went beyond "oui" and “yes” which she dragged in promiscuously whenever she could.

Today we must perforce be rather (?) as we had to cross the Lake and take a diligence from here up the uninteresting and almost tropical valley of the Valtelline: so we bathed luxuiously at Gravedona had lunch and reach the shore just in time to -- be too late for the steamer. Time is an uncertain matter in these Italian places but as we had allowed about half an hour for accidents we thought the misfortune undeserved. We then hired a boat to take us across at about the same fare as the steamer - enclosed is a picture of the boat and Nugent will see that the men stand up and push against the oars instead of pulling. We were too late for the (?) diligence; rather (?) as there is another one at five p.m. when it should be cooler.

Saturday 30 August

Another bathe in Como and a long look at the "opal" tinted hills at the head of it which looked shadowy and unreal as they glowed in the afternoon sun: then at five p.m. by diligence to Sondrio -- a long rumble of five hours along straight roads with Indian corn on either side standing 10 of 12 feet high and the noise of the grasshoppers mixed with that of the wheels and the driver clacking his whip like the discharge of a pistol. As the sun set behind us the mountains were bathed in pink light and soon a planet shone like a lighthouse from the brow of the hill and the moonlight crept down the mountains sides to the bottom of the valley until it was all nearly as bright as day.

We slept at Sundrico and have had a hot little walk up here: it is the last place up this valley at which we can sleep before crossing the mountains back into Switzerland: so we put up here and have sent for a guide to arrange tomorrow's walk with him. Directly after ordering our collazione (dejeuner) I sallied out with a towel and have had such a douche under a mountain stream: the water fell on my back with as much force nearly as if a man had been thumping me. I cannot get McG. to appreciate this kind of bathing.

Black Bess was Turpin’s mare and, judging from your description of yours steed’s age, I should think you must have got hold of the identical animal. You seem to have made a very good bargain. I should like to see you and the family en route keeping Black Bess up to his pace. I have written Peckham that I shall be at Lincoln's Inn on Wednesday the 10th September. Let me know when I'm to expect you: how glad I shall be when we meet. Today I have been laughing to myself at the "uggy statue" incident at Brussels. Do you remember our room at the Hotel d’Hollande there.

Love and kisses all round including Phyllis.

Your loving husband
Holroyd Chaplin


Sils, Engadine, Monday 1st September /79


My dearest bood,

We have bid farewell to Italy and in two more days shall have ended our walk at Davos. Except that I'm looking forward to seeing you this would make me very sad. At (?), after posting my letter to you, we had an amusing evening. About ten people (Italians) were staying at the inn "en pension," the landlord sat down to dinner with us and in honour of the superintendent of gens d’armes of the province (the Captain Hastings of the district) who was on a round of inspection, had up some very choice wine. Some of the ladies could talk French and after dinner we strolled up the valley in the moonlight (don't be alarmed, they were all married and "très comme il faut".

We had engaged our guide (?) night to take us over the pass into Switzerland and got up in the dark: there were two passes and as one was shorter and commanded a better view we chose it on the guide saying it was "molto facile": at the head of the valley we ate part of our provisions by the side of a bucket of milk furnished from a chalet, and looking up at the steep rocks towering 2000 & 3000 feet above us we wondered how we should be able to make the ascent. To the guide no doubt it was "motto facile" and he walked up and down with our two knapsacks on his back and a bundle of provisions in one hand as easily as if he were going up and downstairs, but to beginners in the art of climbing it was far from pleasant. The guide put me in front and he then followed leading McG by one hand and the ascent had to be made by a series of slopes of snow, turf and rock, with precipices below them, the slopes were at about this angle [drawing] and we had to hold on with hands as well as feet.

When at the top we sat on the narrow summit and enjoyed a meal and a splendid view of snowy peaks with a glacier at our feet, and one or two mountain lakes as bright as emerald far below us. The descent down the slope of the glacier of was easy enough: the guide went on ahead sounding the snow where he feared there might be crevasses and we slid down the snowy slopes at a great pace. I should say that before I got to the top of our climb I began to feel almost at home, and to enjoy the excitement of finding footholds: it is not pleasant however when testing a ledge of rock to see it break off and hear it rolling down the mountain “rickety rock like a pebble in Carisbrook well.”

Here the climate is wonderfully fresh and cold for it is some 5000 feet above the sea, and everything is German Swiss. After talking French and trying to talk Italian for so many days Germans seems very barbarous and unnatural.

Rubric (Here read letter to Julia)

After walking down the Engadine McG had a very bad night with diarrhoea and sickness, so that I came over the pass here alone, he coming in rather later by an easier route. Compared with other places we have seen, Davos is not beautiful but it is said to be wonderfully healthy. The Mc Morlands are Scotch and have invested money in a share in this hotel: he is a clever man, a Presbyterian minister originally but has got too “broad” and gave up one of the best livings in Scotland: he is now decidedly unclerical: age about 40. The wife is ugly as sin but a very shrewd woman and aids the hotel by bringing people together, getting up excursions etc.

[separate sheet, no address or date]

Here I have found your nice long letter of 22nd August about your fellow pensionaires and with notes from Nugent and Irene: the latter has written hers carefully but Nugent might have done better. I think all your letters have come on to me as far as I can judge from the contents. Thank the children for their letters.

I'm writing this early in the morning and have been watching a light autumn mist clearing off the valley: it was golden with the early sun and then tinged with blue as it got thinner and the blue sky was seen through it: now there is not a cloud.

The people here do not seem to get up particularly early and I dare say they find it difficult to kill time. McG is revelling in a separate bedroom where I could not disturb him by early rising. Tomorrow the two McGs and I leave this for Basle: only one more days walk!! Chamois hunting has begun: it is only allowed in September. In yesterday's walk I saw four chamois hanging up by their horns in cottages -- one was still warm. I'm told that as many as 800 were shot in this district only last September.

With very kind regards to Miss W.

Your loving husband
Holroyd Chaplin
[Letter from Agnes N. Ayrton to Holroyd Chaplin, no year given, but could be 15 June 1870 since that was the year of Holroyd’s marriage.]

Near Como, June 15th

Dear Holroyd

I send you the lines you asked for some weeks ago. If I recalled rightly you had a little trouble about the meter in the first two lines of the second part. It has just occurred to me, would not the introduction of "his" (italicized) fit "the" before "deathbed," effect all that is wanting, ie it would accentuate naturally a syllable Nicholliewise as "the" sounds better forced accentuated when followed by such a word as deathbed. Now, with his deathbed. There is something (?) in accentuating his more than the syllable death that follows.

Will you tell me what is the original painting from which this photograph is taken? There is a very lovely fresco in the Brera(?) Gallery at Milan by Bernardino Luinci(?) of the Body of St Catherine carried by three angels to the sepulchre which I should imagine very probably suggested that of which theme the photograph and which it resembles; of the fresco Murray says "a lovely work, reproduced in chromo-lithography by our Arundel Society of London." Perhaps you know it, but it would not fit your nurses(?) as the other does.

June 13th

I want to know if your wedding is fixed for this autumn and if so when? I am sorry to be delayed finishing this but hope it does not matter. I will not delay it longer by (?) now but refer you to my letter to Aunt M. I must (?)impress the necessity of an immediate reply as it is by the (?) these rooms are held open for me.

Be sure you give my love to Effie when you write and with mine to yourself,

Believe me your affectionate cousin

Agnes N. Ayrton.

If Julia wishes to consult anybody about the likelihood of (?) suiting her she had letter go to (?) Weber, 10 (?) Street, Grosvenor Sq

[Overleaf, Holroyd’s poems:]

Where we shall close our eyes and die,
May we be attended by
Faith & Hope & Charity;
May an angel from above
Gently guide those trials of love,
Late we in their upward flight
All the meaner things of earth!
See we with a keener sight
Everything of heavenly worth!

But alas! for the deathbed
Alas, the troubled night,
Whence the three have mourning fled,
Scared by our affright!
Where faith has prayed for years in pain
And hope has hoped for years in vain,
Where charity has fought with scorn
From morn to eve. from eve to morn;
There mercy sheathes her guardian sword
And sheds a sad angelic tear,
She turns, does homage to her Lord,
And leaves the wretch to die in fear.

6th April 1862 H.C.


[Letters from Holroyd Chaplin to his wife, Euphemia Isabella Chaplin (‘Dear’)]

1. Norway, Bjuikam(?) 14 August 1884

My dearest,
I posted my letter of yesterday in haste after I had written to Nugent, and without enclosing a line to you, because as we came to a little river a postman met the boat and it was a convenient opportunity to get rid of the letter. On landing there was a scurry to get beds at the inn and we were successful in getting a room. The hotel accommodation here just now is much too small for the number of travellers.

I feel better: we have had a real square meal at an inn up here that has been started by the Norwegian Tourist Club: the first eatable meal since we left C(?)ama: the attraction of the place is a fine waterfall that I hear thundering though I cannot see it from the balcony where we are drinking our after-dinner coffee with an English-speaking Norwegian.

Whilst looking at the falls an elderly Russian lady yesterday managed to fall down and break her leg: she was carried to the small inn at which we slept last night, and as she will have stay there six weeks I hope she may not die of the bad cooking -- she can only speak Russian and German and the people only Norsk, so that it will not be exactly lively

Holmick
We had walked 15 miles and down the fine waterfall before dinner and then engaged a guide, one Vaur Jorgen for two days for the moderate sum of eleven shillings, he keeping himself and carrying our sacks: another ten miles has brought us to this, a solitary little fishing inn upon the borders of a dreary lake: on an island in it a couple of Englishmen have pitched a tent and are encamped for the sake of fishing: they must find it cold for we are enjoying a fire here. The scenery so far has been rather disappointing and not to be compared in interest with the Alps: it is so far like some of the dreary parts of the Highlands - rock, heather, firs and birches: the mountains are mostly rounded and have not character enough to be recognisable when seen again: all this makes it hardly possible to find our way by mountain tracks without a guide: we're pleased to be off the track here of cariole people, as there is no road to the place. Our evening meal has been trout caught by a Norwegian staying here with his wife: but for this we should have been reduced to bread and butter and milk. There is a white headed boy here called Knut. We make an early start tomorrow so I'm off to bed at 9.30 p.m.

I never saw so many magpies as in this country. If there is any truth in soothsayers there ought to be a large addition to somebody's family.



2. Norway, 15th August

I take up my pen -- as people say -- in a primitive farmhouse where we are having a meal of eggs, coffee, milk and "fladbrod" (a sort of oatcake) previous to crossing a lake which comes in our day’s March. There is a Scotch mist and it is raw and cold so that we sigh for the sunny slopes of the Alps and the exhilarating air of those parts. The people here are primitive, the young woman of the house has lighted up her pipe of very strong tobacco: McGill gallantly offered her a match, but she preferred to take a large ember from the fire and jam it into her pipe. Throughout the day the walk has been up and down over moorland and swamps and amongst birch trees: clouds low down on the mountains, the view intensely dreary. One is a good deal impressed by the scantiness of the population. Two Norwegian students who slept both in one bed in our room last night have walked with us.

Bothen, Loudag, Saturday 16th August

The above was written under the influence of bad nights, "tummy" and a kind of rheumatism which a good night and a seidlitz powder have amended. Lakes are a great feature in the scenery here: on the map anything smaller than Coniston lake is not thought worth naming even. Today we began by being rowed across a lake which stretched several miles, then a rough walk over hills, and then 16 miles of road brought us here. Last night we slept in sumptuous beds in the sitting-room of a sort of farmhouse inn. McGill was much distressed at the ‘pigge’ coming in and out to lay the breakfast whilst he got his clothes on: I told him I would protect him but his modesty was painful and the ‘pigge’ was quite innocent of the embarrassment she caused.

There are two Germans from Thuringia here and we have been having much talk. They cheer us by saying the country we are coming to is equal to the Alps: but I miss the bright sun and the busy life and intelligence of the South: there is no temptation here to loiter by the way and feel that the world is a beautiful place and mere existence is pleasure. I enclose a specimen of “fladbrod”: when fresh it is as brittle as glass, and some say about as edible, but I think that is a libel. I can't help thinking of you sealed at the top of the stairs and wonder how you are getting on: I hope you like the lodgings with the pleasant lookout on the green trees. Since I posted my last I have not come to a Post Office but expect to do so tomorrow. I'm finishing my letter tonight.

Good-bye, my dearest,
Your loving husband,
Holroyd Chaplin.

Note at the beginning - please send these round to Nugent, Ayrton, Allan.
Notepaper is headed S. Y. Argonaut and "World Travel", 5 Endsleigh Gardens, London N.W.

12th April 1907
We got away from Marseille about 3 p.m. (?) being a little delayed by the luggage which had been put in a van at Calais and sealed by the Douane so as to avoid the need of inspection in France; but first I should mention that at a gorgeously painted hall of the Gare de Paris-Lyons et Mediterranee at Paris the Tourist Coy provided us with a nice driver? at their cost to strengthen us for the night journey which passed with less tedium than might have been the case as we three (Ernest, Hillary and self) got a compartment to ourselves, our train being reserved for the Argonauts, and not invaded by the general travellers.

Luckily the sea was very smooth and we all settled down to the ship’s routine. I was relieved when my luggage was brought in to my cabin for there was a false rumour that somebody's luggage had gone astray. Peronnie is good at organising, as Nugent will remember in Norway, and he now has a cheerful and capable wife -- Ernest introduced me to various learned archaeologists and we sat at the table of one of them -- Audrey of Wellington College, who says he remembers Nugent and asked after him -- Peronnie says he remembers us on board the St Ronald but I think it improbable as he must have seen so very many passengers since then.

We kept along some miles from the coast and the entrance to Toulon was pointed out: it is a bold and rocky coast. At dinner most of the men were in evening dress: but some good & true men agreed with me that this was superfluous. I am told we number about 180. The conversation is much about the average. At dinner Peronnie announced that there would be a concert at 9 p.m. but tired with the previous night on the train I turned in at 8.30 and slept soundly for my cabin is in a quiet part and the stewards are well-trained to keep things quiet.

Today (12th) I was up betimes and enjoyed a bath with the chill off. It is a fine day, and I have been studying the changing shades of blue which the sea takes. It has been a bright day but very cool: the passengers busy with all sorts of deck games from cricket to deck quoits at which I look on, carrying about a book but as usual on shipboard find I read but little. All sorts of committees are formed. Ernest is on the Photographic Committee. An interesting talk with Dr Catoe of Liverpool University in the smoking room on discoveries at two temples to AEsculapius and the latest ideas on his worship. Mrs Lucas is a pleasant little woman and of course knows all our Tasmanian friends.

Just after breakfast we passed Xiro’ the (?) of Bonifacio, and the little island of Caprera off the Sardinian coast, where Garibaldi spent the last years of his life. Fine scenery.

13th of April. A rainy day. After lunch we sighted the Lipari islands and as many are mountains of 2000 to 3000 feet we were a long time coming up with them: Stromboli on our left was the most interesting and from the crater a little below the summit smoke streamed down the hillside and then rose into the air: it seemed to come out with more vigour about every ten minutes. There was no (?) but it was fairly clear, so that we had a good view of the Straits of Messina with the rock and town of Scylla and the mountains of Calabria powdered with snow on our left, and the mountains of Sicily on our right. Carybdis is a "tide-race" and reminded me of the Race of (?): the water was swirling and troubled for about a mile, and one could see that it might be very awkward for a small sailing boat. The bow of a wrecked steamer was appropriately in the scene. We could not see Etna owing to clouds, and as night fell we rounded the toe of Italy and steamed due East, which gave us the full benefit of a SW breeze.

14th April Sunday -
‘To all you ladies now on land
We men at sea indite,
But first would have you understand
How hard it is to write (Dorset)

A good deal of motion to lull us to sleep last night, and a very scanty attendance at breakfast in the saloon, where the empty pivot chairs were spinning round in a ghostly way. I forgot to say that last evening we had a short lecture about Athens with lantern slides from Audrey and Bosanquet, Director of the British Archaeological School in Athens, which carries out explanations. It has been raining and blowing all day, and I am closing this after dinner to post it on board this evening for dispatch from Athens tomorrow. We are due at Corinth in time to take train at 8 a.m. for Athens tomorrow morning.

Monday 15th April. When we awoke we were at anchor at the head of the Gulf of Corinth. Rain and wind still pursued us and we could only see a little way up the sides of the hills -- in fact we have not seen the sun for three days, and it is decidedly cold -- the country and the weather remind me of the Highlands of Scotland. About 50 remained on the ship, which was to go through the Canal and meet us at the Phaleron Port of Athens in the evening. The rest of us went ashore in the ship’s boats and had a very muddy walk to the little railway station where a special train was waiting for us. "Special" did not mean speed, for we did not make more than 10 miles an hour, so that it was 1.30pm before we reached Athens, were we were refreshed by a sumptuous lunch at the expense of the ship, which also provided carriages to take us wherever we wished to go. It was still pouring with rain when we got to the Museum, and there we looked in a tantalising and cursory way as time was short at the amazing beautiful statues etc that have been dug up, and the gold and other things found by Schumann at Mycenae -- Ernest taking many photos in the rooms.
Then we drove to the Acropolis, the glories of which could not be quite dimmed even by pouring rain, regardless of which Ernest did much execution with his camera, though he was perpetually telling me that the stomach of his machine had gone wrong and they would all be failures, which I do not believe. It is his way of keeping his spirits up. I expect he is now in the darkroom, developing.

We chanced upon Bosanquet expanding to some of our party, and I joined in and was glad to listen to so great an authority. The ruins are splendid, and I longed for sun, to lighten them up. Previous reading and photos made me feel quite at home. We drove past the theatre of Dionysos and the temple of Theseus to the station, from which it is a few minutes train to Phaleron where we found the ship’s boats, and so, still under umbrellas, we regained the Argonaut. I cannot pretend to have really seen Athens, but we made the most of our time, and saw something to remember.

Tuesday 16th April. A brighter day at last, and we saw the sun again soon after breakfast when we were coming up to Lesbos (now Myteleni): soon after noon we got to the little island of Tenados which as - every schoolboy knows amongst his small stock of learning - is visible from the plain of Troy, between which and the island we steamed to the north of the Hellespont. The lofty isle of (?) was further off, and on the edge of the horizon in the West there was visible the snowclad tip of Mount Athos looking like the upper half of a rising full moon -- if you measure it on a map you will see what a distance it was. From this it may be inferred that we had a clear sky: the wind has got to the north, and it is colder than ever. Going up the Hellespont we passed between two Turkish forts and were boarded and investigated by an official before we could proceed. Then we passed by a Turkish fleet lying dirty and, I am told, immovable, because some necessary parts of the machinery have been taken out and sent to Constantinople to ensure that if there were a mutiny on board, the capital could not be threatened.

From Lesbos to Abydos is certainly a good swim, but no doubt Miss Kellerman could do it as easily as Leander, Byron and Mr Allinson, who was immortalised by crossing with the post. I was forced into a match of cricket between grandfathers and granddaughters: a shameless young creature asked me at point-blank "are you a grandfather"! I don't know why she should have thought it possible. I did my best and added two 0s to our score. Hilary did no better, and we were shamefully beaten. The sun set in glory as we were getting near the sea of Marmara. The (?)-up of today has been a very spirited lecturer from one of the grandfathers -- Mr Thompson, a very learned man, on the history of the Eastern Empire. Tomorrow we shall anchor off Constantinople by sunrise, and take the city by assault with piastres.

The 17th of April 1907
We had been told overnight that the ship would pass in front of Constantinople at sunrise today. Ernest dashed up with his camera whilst I like a sluggard stuck to my berth, and when I got up at my usual hour we were anchored in the Golden Horn with a fine view, on the left, of Seraglio point and the side of the town facing that way, crowned by the Mosque of Sulemein and other mosques and minarets; on the right was the town and tower of Galata with a view of the Bosphorus towards the Black Sea.

For seeing a large town in a short two days, things are well organised on this ship. We formed into parties of about 15, to each of which the dragoman (to use a grand word for a mongrel of very mixed nationality) is allotted. On the quay we find a sufficiency of carriages: you have arranged the route beforehand and the dragoman is the useful man to rush about and marshall the carriages -- all this is covered by what was paid for "land excursions". Of course it would be much pleasanter to wander about and take over ourselves, but the saving of time and labour is enormous.
After stumbling about in deep mud our party started in five carriages in the rain -- for the ship could not organise the weather. We rattled and bumped along through crowds in jerseys, baggy breeches, now and then a turban, and often in picturesque sheepskins and rags. The yellow pariah dogs evaded our wheels unconcernedly -- nobody interferes with them, they are their own masters: look quite happy and independent -- they have a foxy nose and resemble the dingoes and other wild dogs at the zoo -- the puppies are engaging little creatures -- I will not bring one home.
So we jolted across the bridge between Pera (the European quarter) and old Stamboul. A poor bridge enough to look at but one of the most famous in the world -- the variety of race and costume is marvellous. Through mud we drew up to a new building. The Museum, in which there are some fine things. Then St Sophia received us and in capacious slippers we strode the carpeted floor and looked up into the glorious dome. The whole building, though enormously massive, conveys the idea of extraordinary lightness. You might imagine that a delicate cup had been inverted to form the roof. We passed the enclosure where the Jacuzzarias? were killed. The Mosque of Suleiman -- a smaller copy of St Sophia, the tombs & the Sultans -- a poor affair. The Bazaar -- a perfect rabbit warren said to contain 7,000 shops -- with delightful gleams of light and darkness. The weather having cleared, we climbed the Tower of Galata to enjoy a glorious view, and returned with much satisfaction to the quiet of our ship for ? is decidedly a noisy town.

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Now Ernest and I can say that we have been in all four quarters of the globe.

20th April, Saturday. By about 9 a.m. we were lying off Troy and on getting to shore found houses, mules, donkeys and native carriages awaiting us, with many picturesque natives. I took a hooded carriage, something like a barrel on wheels with a hole in each side through which you creep and then lie nearly at full length -- it has two horses and can be driven over any obstacle - apart from occasional jumps it is quite comfortable. The plain is well watered. Once I saw storks about, and occasionally camels. Four miles brought us to a small hill somewhat bigger than Primrose Hill which has been deeply trenched, disclosing the remains of some 9 towns and villages one over the other, beginning with the Stone Age. Of course the remains are much mixed and most difficult to distinguish. Interest centres on the sixth or Hasmanic? city, and looking at its small size it is difficult to believe in it having been the object of so famous a war. Is it all due to the poet’s imagination and its magnifying effect? I stayed there about an hour, Ernest and other enthusiasts were there much longer. It has been a fresh and bright day and the scenery of a quiet kind enjoyable with distant view over Isla(?) and sea bounded by mountains on mainland and islands. It is about 4 miles from where we landed. I must say "the ship" does these excursions very well -- to arrange for about 170 people in a country like this must require a great deal of organisation. A ship's officer tells me that we are counted as we leave the ship and as we return, so as to ensure nobody being left behind. A discourse this evening by Dr Catoe on the monasteries of Mount Athos.
This evening we passed to north of Imbros and the sun was setting in the sea in great glory as we passed south of Samothrace, whose mountains were lost in the clouds.

21st April, Sunday. Mount Athos. This peninsula is about 50 miles by 10 and it is entirely and solidly inhabited by monks and lay brothers. No women or female animals, dogs, cats, horses etc are allowed to touch the sacred soil. I recommended the ladies on board to hold a suffragette meeting and insist on landing. When I came on deck we were opposite a few houses in the Bay of Daphne with mountains covered with brushwood rising steeply from the sea. We steamed in front of a monastery (that of Simon of the Rock) perched about 200 feet up the mountainside. It towered to many stories with irregular buildings and many galleries. We had a stiff pull up by a zigzag mule track thro’ laurel (Daphne again) and many flowering things?: the monks clanged their bells in welcome and fired salutes. The Bishop received us with ceremony in his room and ordered in monks bearing in 1st, jam and cold water; 2nd, aniseed liqueur; 3rd, a thin wine, and 4th, coffee. He could talk a little French so we conversed. Then he took us round the Church and gave us each a loaf of bread and some other trifles. As we left, the bells clanged again with greater vigour. The monks look merry and happy notwithstanding the unrelieved monotony of their society and their extremely scanty fare. This is the first visit the Argonaut has paid to Athos and I do not think they have been invaded by any large body before. They have only seen a few casual travellers and naval men. The view from the building was glorious, the sea being of the deepest sapphire.
In like manner we visited the Russian monastery, on the seashore further to the north (by the way, we were on the West of the peninsula). It is much larger, 1,300 as against 80 monks, but new and less interesting. After tea we went ashore to the Monastery of (?) which again was better, and we attended a service - in the middle of which numerous relics were produced which were quite worth seeing on account of the beauty of the gold and silver caskets in which they were encased.
About 40 of the men made a whole day's excursion visiting monasteries in the interior on foot and on mule back. Now we are on our way to Salonica.

Monday 22nd of April. Salonica, where we arrived before breakfast. It was cold yesterday but bright. Today is colder and the reverse of bright: we have had rain and the natives keep to their (?). However, as usual, the electric launch towing two boats took us nearly all ashore. The town rises like an amphitheatre encircled with old walls, but is modern like its streets. Some of the mosques, primarily churches, contain interesting mosaics, and one (of the Basilica type) of the fourth century, was very remarkable for its architecture. It was lined with marbles and the columns were evidently taken from still older buildings. The Turks had interfered very little with it and no one had attempted to restore or add to it.
Alas! The mail we were expecting has not arrived, the railway having been washed away somewhere up country by the floods. The ship has waited a little, but now the anchor is being weighed and the letters will have to come on to us to Marseille. We shall not get them until Monday, if then!
I am disappointed not to see any good sized vessels with huge lateen sails: by a natural process of development the front part of the sail has been cut off and replaced by a foresail and jib and the after part is left as a big sail with a high peak.
We have several invalids on board -- Lady Pearson (widow of a Chancery judge) who sat at my table, is down with pneumonia, a French sister engaged at Constantinople being in attendance; a lady has ricked her knee and hops about in sprints; Mrs Lucas has sprained her ankle and hobbles; there are a case of asthma and one of fever caused by a chill. We have Sir Thomas Barlow, the well-known physician on board, besides the ship's doctor.
This evening there is a lecture by Bosanquet on Volos in Thessaly, where we are due tomorrow morning.

Thursday 23rd April. We were entering the golf of Volos, Thessaly, when we got up. A raw cold morning, and there was no sun except for an hour or two at midday. In the evening it was pouring and I had to wear a macintosh over my thick pilot jacket "Oh to be in England now that April's there". However, I had a fine bracing walk among the foothills of Pelion with a party of eight who were all Scotch. ‘Our way was there’ olive yards and the hillside was covered with anemonies and ashphodels; the latter are hardly so pretty as their name -- still they are graceful, growing in a spire (if that is the right term) about 2 foot high, with a pale flower of violet white all up the stem. The top of Pelion is still covered with snow. We got underway about 4.30 and the scenery of mountains and sea was very beautiful in its grandeur, but in the absence of sun there was no colour, and I have told you how cold it was.
Tonight the young people are to have a dance, which may warm them.

Wednesday 24th April. We have spent the day in the channel between Euboea [modern Evvoia or Evia] and the mainland. It has been cold with some heavy rain in the morning. Before lunch we landed at Eretria in Euboea and saw some interesting remains of theatre, temples and baths. We climb to the acropolis and traced the remains of walls of various periods. I was with Dr Bowers, one of the best of our learned men and a very good fellow -- master of a school at Cambridge. Speaks Greek like a native, and told me he would gladly live entirely here. In the afternoon we landed on the mainland at Rhamnus where we had much rough walking and climbing to see the remains of a theatre: many of the party mounted another hill to see what is left of the temple. I was prudent and returned to the ship, whence with a good glass I could see something of it on the skyline: when the building was there it must have been a fine object from the sea. The day has improved and the landscape was beautiful with passing showers, but there was not sun enough to bring out the colour, and it is still cold. Just at sunset we passed Marathon: we could see the mountains behind but it was too dark to see the plain itself, and hard to believe it was there. A very successful day -- a warm salt bath was very refreshing when I came back. Ernest of course was well on the hunt, busy photographing. There are some iron mines at Rhamnus and as our boats were leaving the shore we saw a man connected with the mines photographing us, so the tables were turned.
There is to be a concert this evening which I do not think I shall attend.

Thursday 25th April. All day we have “ploughed the unharvested sea in our black ships". On getting up Cape Matapan with the gigantic mass of Taygetus covered with snow was in view: far the finest mountain we have seen yet. By lunch we had lost sight of land. Now that we have done our sightseeing it has been a cloudless day with a blue sea and the gently swaying motion of the ship. It is still cold - the cricket Oxford and Cambridge match was played and energetic people were busy playing off ties and narrowing down the competitions in all sorts of games, cards, draughts and deck games. I am not in any of them, but shall be pleased to subscribe for prizes: no doubt there will be a collection: for it keeps people from gossip and quarrels. Ernest has been hard at work developing and printing the very numerous views he has taken. The young people are dancing on the quarterdeck to the light of a Gibbons moon.

Friday 26th April. Warm weather at last with a clear sky and the sea a proper blue. At 6 a.m. Etna was sighted at a distance of about 100 miles, for it is nearly 11,000 feet high, and when I came on deck it was well up on the port bow with the mountains of Calabria powdered with snow on the other side. After lunch Etna loomed large with its snowy shoulders, and from the summit a small stream of smoke issued: the lower slopes were indistinct in mist and (?). What a picture Albert Goodwin would have made of it: the mountains might well laugh at the attempts of photographers. The wind - which had been south - freshened and drew down from the north as we enter the straits. Charybdis was not in quite such good form as before, when the wind was strong from the south. The captain obligingly took us close up to Scylla and from the bridge I watched the photographers in the crowd on the bow and could hear them "touching the button" -- like file-firing. When through the Straits, the wind dropped again, and it was a perfect evening. The top of Etna could just be seen above the nearer mountains across the island but it was not lighted up by the setting sun as I had hoped it might be.
The captain very civilly invited Hilary and me to have a drink in his cabin -- quite a dainty little boudoir -- before lunch. Mr Bowers discourses this evening on modern Greek life and folklore amongst the peasants -- very interesting and amusing.

Ernest very busy printing photos etc, scrubbing up a handful of coins which he got for a trifle, after pickling them in lemon juice tempered by a rusty nail. Dr Bosanquet’s recipe. Dr Gow? tells me there was a mention of poor Theodoric’s death in the Western School Mag and promises to send a copy. There is a German father, mother and grown-up son and daughter on board who are annoyed at the way in which the company devote themselves to sports all day and every day. After dark we passed Stromboli: every four or five minutes it showed a dull glow of fire from its summit -- the night was too thick to see the mountain itself.

Saturday 27th April. Steaming from Sicily to the straits of Bonifacio: land not in sight all day. I have arranged with a Mr Mansel of about my age, a former master of Marlborough, to visit some of the towns of Provence which I saw just 45 years ago. It will delay my return about a week, but it seems a pity to miss the opportunity now I am so far out, and I hate the long unbroken rail journey. The day has been devoted to the final contests in the sports and Lady Barnham is to give away the prizes this evening. Some of the games were very amusing to look at, such as the obstacle race, cockfighting (by the way, to see old Audrey in this competition might be said to "beat cockfighting"), two men bestraddling a spar fighting with pillows, each trying to make the other lose his balance, no touching the spar with hands allowed, and of course the feet not touching the ground. The game of "beanbags" is something to watch: I must describe it when we meet.

There is to be a smoking concert and for the young folk a dance. Some of the stewards seem to be selected for their musical talent. They give quite good pieces, equal as it seems to me to the band at an ordinary "at home". We have piano, cornet, violin and double bass.

Sunday 28th April. Gulf of Lyons -- we were so well up to time that Ajaccio was added to the bill of fare and we anchored in the harbour early this morning. You will see it on the west side of Corsica. Sad to say, it was pouring with rain, the mountains hidden in mist, and very cold. Much imagination was needed to divine how beautiful it must be without those drawbacks: the palm trees and orange trees helped a little. The house in which Napoleon was born is the most interesting sight in the town: a good comfortable house with the old furniture, and the sedan chair in which Ma? e Mère was hastily brought from church just in time for the little great man to be born on a sofa at home. We filled in our time looking at some very bad pictures and drinking chocolate so that we might see the papers, for we had see none later than two days after our start. Owing to an error in a telegram received by a passenger at Constantinople we had been rejoicing that three had been taken off there(?): we now gather that this is a delusion. This is about the roughest day we have had; but the passengers are getting seasoned and most of them came to dinner. Very difficult to write.
Finis.


19 Lincoln’s Inn Fields


7 June 1872


My dear Nugent,

I wish you many happy returns of to-morrow when you will have completed the first year of what I hope may be a long and a good life. As the child is father to the man, you are already a parent, and, as such you will I hope behave with becoming gravity and only chortle pleasantly.

Some day I will give you a present on your birthday but on this ‘oneth’ birthday I will only ask dear Mama to give you what you like best – a good, moist, dirty crust and you may rub it on the floor and suck it as much as you like.

Give a kiss to Mama and be very good to her.

Your dear father

Holroyd Chaplin
[Letter from Holroyd Chaplin to his wife about his Will, possibly written 5 January 1913 (the dated extract from Psalm 37,16 was on another paper headed ‘To those I leave’ in the same envelope)]

My dearest,

Most probably you will have seen by your own judgement what I am going to explain; but the idea of any misunderstanding is too painful to contemplate, so I write to tell you that the reference to possible second marriage is inserted in our settlement and in any will, not from any doubt that you would not of yourself do what is right and best for those we love, but to warn off any self-interested people who might pester you with attention. I have in any business met with cases in which it would have been better for the lady had she been thus protected.

By payment of death duties and re-investment of the trust funds at lower rates of interest as time goes on, your income will be lessened somewhat: but I believe it will be if anything more than sufficient to live in the comfort you have been accustomed to and with such additions to your comfort as age (I can hardly connect the word with you!) may require. If the income is more than you want it would be better to give any surplus equally between our children or even to arrange for them to have part of the capital. But I write this with no intention of over-riding your free will and good judgement or altering the terms of any will.

My belief in the Resurrection is so firm that I think the destination of any body of very little moment. As you know I think cremation is the right and unselfish course: but I should hesitate to hurt the feelings of any of those dear to us. Hildenborough churchyard, in or near the tomb of one of my parents seems the most natural resting place of body or ashes, but I do not wish to hamper your judgement.

God bless and keep you for many years and may we meet hereafter

Your loving husband, Holroyd Chaplin

PS: The reason for the Codicil of August 1911 is that I had not sufficiently allowed you the income you will have from the Settlement I made on you and for the devise(?) of the house to you.

To those I leave:

'O tarry thou the Lord's leisure: be strong and he shall comfort thine heart: and put thou thy trust in the Lord'. Psalm 37,16. (HC. 5 January 1913)

Facts
  • 17 MAR 1840 - Birth - ; Edgbaston, Warwickshire, England (1881 Census) on St Patrick's Day
  • 23 DEC 1917 - Death - ; 72 Edith Road, West Kensington, Middlesex
  • 1 OCT 1897 - Retirement -
  • 1871 - Residence - ; Paddington (?), London
  • FROM 1873 TO 1908 - Residence - ; Kensington, London
  • 1908 - Residence - ; Kensington, London
  • FROM 1880 TO 1890 - Directorships - ; London
  • 1894 - Directorships -
  • 24 FEB 1899 - Fact -
  • FROM 1902 TO 1917 - Directorships - ; Birmingham
  • FROM 1907 TO 1912 - Directorships - ; London
  • ABT 1910 - Societies -
  • 5 MAR 1917 - Medical -
  • FROM 1851 TO 1856 - Education - Tonbridge School
  • 1862 - Education - Admitted solicitor
  • 1869 - Occupation - Solicitor
  • 1871 - Residence - ; Paddington (?), London
  • FROM 1873 TO 1908 - Residence - ; Kensington, London
  • 1908 - Residence - ; Kensington, London
Ancestors
   
Edward Chaplin , MA, Rev.
7 JUL 1771 - 14 NOV 1858
 
 
John Clarke Chaplin
25 AUG 1806 - 2 JUN 1856
  
  
  
Margaret Clarke Theodorick
4 JAN 1771 - 29 NOV 1827
 
Holroyd Chaplin
17 MAR 1840 - 23 DEC 1917
  
 
  
Frederick Ayrton
1780 - 24 NOV 1824
 
 
Matilda Adriana Ayrton
1 JUN 1813 - 26 JAN 1899
  
  
  
 
Family Group Sheet - Child
PARENT (M) John Clarke Chaplin
Birth25 AUG 1806Watlington, Norfolk about 2 o'clock in the afternoon, privately baptized 26th by his father and recd into church by Rev
Death2 JUN 1856 Tonbridge, Kent, England
Marriage6 APR 1835to Matilda Adriana Ayrton at Marylebone, London (New Church)
FatherEdward Chaplin , MA, Rev.
MotherMargaret Clarke Theodorick
PARENT (F) Matilda Adriana Ayrton
Birth1 JUN 1813Chelsea, London (baptised Richmond according to Andi Smith)
Death26 JAN 1899 98 Palace Gardens Terrace, Kensington, London.
Marriage6 APR 1835to John Clarke Chaplin at Marylebone, London (New Church)
FatherFrederick Ayrton
MotherJuliana Caroline Rebecca Adriana Nugent
CHILDREN
MHolroyd Chaplin
Birth17 MAR 1840Edgbaston, Warwickshire, England (1881 Census) on St Patrick's Day
Death23 DEC 191772 Edith Road, West Kensington, Middlesex
Marriage16 AUG 1870to Euphemia Isabella Skinner at Bickington or Newton Abbott? in South Devon, see Matilda Adriana Chaplin's diary for Tuesday 16 August 1870.
MAllan Chaplin , Col
Birth20 JUN 1844Christened St Peter, Brighton, Sussex on 18 Sept 1844 - IGI
Death19 AUG 1910
Marriage20 DEC 1871to Maud Elizabeth Skinner at Bridgend, Glamorgan
FLouisa Sarah Chaplin
Birth23 APR 1838Baptized St Thomas in Birmingham 1838 according to Andi Smith)
Death9 JUL 1897Allevard-Les-Bains, Isere, France
Marriage30 APR 1864to John Edwin Hilary Skinner at Christ Church, Marylebone, London
MAyrton Chaplin , Rev
Birth19 OCT 1842Edgbaston, Warwickshire, England (1881 Census)
Death1930
Marriage2 JAN 1868to Edith Elizabeth Pyne
FMatilda Charlotte Chaplin , M.D.
Birth20 JUN 1846Honfleur, Normandy, France (Baptized Sprowston Norfolk in 1847 according to Andi Smith)
Death19 JUL 1883her residence, 68 Sloane Street, London
Marriage21 DEC 1871to William Edward Ayrton , F.R.S. F.R.S. at Saint Matthew, Bayswater, Kensington.
FJulia Margaret Nugent Chaplin
Birth23 JAN 1837Baptized St Thomas in Birmingham 1837 according to Andi Smith)
Death
Marriage2 MAR 1886to James Edward Nugent
Family Group Sheet - Spouse
PARENT (M) Holroyd Chaplin
Birth17 MAR 1840Edgbaston, Warwickshire, England (1881 Census) on St Patrick's Day
Death23 DEC 1917 72 Edith Road, West Kensington, Middlesex
Marriage16 AUG 1870to Euphemia Isabella Skinner at Bickington or Newton Abbott? in South Devon, see Matilda Adriana Chaplin's diary for Tuesday 16 August 1870.
FatherJohn Clarke Chaplin
MotherMatilda Adriana Ayrton
PARENT (F) Euphemia Isabella Skinner
Birth7 JUN 1847Brighton, Sussex, England (1881 Census)
Death10 SEP 1939 Sunnyside, Ralph's Ride, Bracknell, Berkshire
Marriage16 AUG 1870to Holroyd Chaplin at Bickington or Newton Abbott? in South Devon, see Matilda Adriana Chaplin's diary for Tuesday 16 August 1870.
FatherAllan Maclean Skinner , Q.C.
MotherCaroline Emily Harding
CHILDREN
FIrene Kate Chaplin
Birth1 MAR 1873Westbourne Park Villas, Paddington, London, England
Death22 JUN 1962Hampstead, London, England
Marriage16 APR 1898to John William Ernest Pearce at St. Annes? (corner of Church St & Kensington High St.)
MAllan Nugent Chaplin
Birth8 JUN 1871London, Middlesex, England (1881 Census)
Death1917London
Marriage27 NOV 1897to Mildred Hall
FMatilda Effie Chaplin
Birth20 JUN 1874Kensington, London (probably)
Death20 DEC 1874Kensington, London (probably)
FPhyllis Chaplin
Birth7 JUN 1879Kensington, London (1881 Census)
Death27 JUL 1924
Marriage24 JUN 1901to Philip Herbert Cowell
MTheodoric Chaplin
Birth14 FEB 1881Kensington, London (1881 Census)
Death29 OCT 1906Kingston near Hobart, Tasmania, Australia, by falling off a cliff.
FDaphne Grace Chaplin
Birth6 SEP 1884Broadstairs, Kent
Death16 FEB 1964
Marriageto Daphne Grace Chaplin
Marriage13 APR 1916to Cecil Arbuthnot Gould at St Barnabas Church, Kensington, London - witnesses E I Chaplin and Holroyd Chaplin - to get marriage certificate see ind
Picture Gallery
 
 
 
 
 
 
Evidence
[S12758] Ann Gregory (Mendell)'s copy of 'A short account of the Families of Chaplin and Skinner........' with annotations by Ayrton Chaplin & others
[S16298] Calendar of wills 1858-1943
[S24099] 1871 Census
[S17180] 1881 Census
Descendancy Chart
Holroyd Chaplin b: 17 MAR 1840 d: 23 DEC 1917
Euphemia Isabella Skinner b: 7 JUN 1847 d: 10 SEP 1939
Irene Kate Chaplin b: 1 MAR 1873 d: 22 JUN 1962
John William Ernest Pearce b: 4 APR 1864 d: 25 JAN 1951
Edward Holroyd Pearce , Lord b: 9 FEB 1901 d: 27 NOV 1990
Erica Priestman b: 1906 d: DEC 1985
Richard Bruce Holroyd Pearce b: 12 MAY 1930 d: 1987
James Edward Holroyd Pearce b: 18 MAR 1934 d: 11 JUN 1985
Phyllis Margaret Pearce b: 8 FEB 1910 d: 6 JUN 1973
Edward Douglas Eade b: 7 FEB 1911 d: 24 DEC 1984
John Allan Chaplin Pearce b: 21 OCT 1912 d: 15 SEP 2006
Helen Nugent Pearce b: 22 NOV 1917 d: 6 APR 1920
Effie Irene Pearce b: 18 AUG 1899 d: 26 JAN 1996
Raymond Ray-Jones R.E., A.R.C.A. b: 31 AUG 1886 d: 26 FEB 1942
Holroyd Anthony Ray-Jones b: 7 JUN 1941 d: 13 MAR 1972
Allan Nugent Chaplin b: 8 JUN 1871 d: 1917
Son Chaplin b: 29 NOV 1900 d: ABT 29 NOV 1900
Matilda Effie Chaplin b: 20 JUN 1874 d: 20 DEC 1874
Phyllis Chaplin b: 7 JUN 1879 d: 27 JUL 1924
Philip Herbert Cowell b: 1870 d: 1949
Theodoric Chaplin b: 14 FEB 1881 d: 29 OCT 1906
Daphne Grace Chaplin b: 6 SEP 1884 d: 16 FEB 1964
Daphne Grace Chaplin b: 6 SEP 1884 d: 16 FEB 1964
Cecil Arbuthnot Gould b: 1883 d: 1917