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“We had a comfortable passage, very smooth sea, none of us were sea sick, but crossing the channel is not pleasant at the best,” Livy wrote her mother the next day from the Brunswick House Hotel on Hanover Square in London. ...

On July 28 they began a long-planned second visit to Condover Hall, Reginald Cholmondeley’s country estate near Shrewsbury, where six years earlier they had stayed for two days. “We remained a week in that house,” Sam recalled, "& learned much. Sometimes there were a dozen guests, sometimes two dozen,” including the painter John Millais. The welcome respite from the bustle of London was, as Paine observes, “one of the happiest chapters of their foreign sojourn,” though it left virtually no record. They left on August 2 for Oxford, where the family parted ways for a few days: Rosina Hay returned with the children to London and Sam and Livy were joined by the English actor Edward Wyndham, who escorted them through the town.  “Oxford is so beautiful the grounds about the colleges are something marvelous,” Livy wrote her mother. “How I do wish you could see them, the old, old stone buildings with the ivy on them and often with our woodbine on them.” The Clemenses returned to London and their children on August 4.”


July 20 Sunday – The Clemens family arrived in London in the morning. Sam wrote in his notebook that the family arrived in London at 8 AM; that it was rainy and cold. They stayed at the Brunswick House Hotel, Hanover Square.

July 26 Saturday – Sam met Lewis Carroll, who later wrote in his diary, “Met Mr. Clemens (Mark Twain), with whom I was pleased and interested” [Green 382].

July 28 Monday – The Clemens family traveled just over 70 miles to spend a week in Condover Hall, in North Shropshire on the west English coast. Paine: “For more than two years they had had an invitation from Reginald Cholmondeley to pay him another visit” [MTB 646]. From Sam’s notebook:

August 3 Sunday – The Clemens family ended their visit at Condover Hall and went to Oxford, arriving at about 6 PM. There they sent the children on to Brunswick House Hotel, London with Rosa and were shown the colleges by Edward Wyndham [MTNJ 2: 337&n93].

August 18 Monday – “Left London at 10.30 AM for Windermere—changed cars all day. Too much variety” [MTNJ 2: 339].

August 19 Tuesday – From Sam’s notebook:

Went up Windermere Lake in the steamer.—Talked with the great Darwin [MTNJ 2: 339]. Note: Charles Robert Darwin (1809-1882). Windermere is over 80 miles north of Liverpool; Condover some 70 miles south of Liverpool.

August 21 Thursday – The Clemens party arrived in Liverpool. An hour later, Sam wrote from the Washington Hotel to Dr. John Brown, a letter of apologies for not being able to make the trip to Edinburgh to see him.

“It is a great disappointment, for we wanted to show you how much ‘Megalopis’ has grown, (she is 7 now) & what a fine creature her sister (aged 5) is, & how prettily they both speak German. There are six persons in my party, & they are as difficult to cart around as nearly any other menagerie would be” [MTLE 4: 86].