To the marchesa bellissima di Bexbury
Dear Lady Bexbury
How entire infinite was my gratitude for your letter condoling upon the sad loss of my dear zia. She ever expressed a fondness profound towards you. Indeed my own sorrow is immense.
I am of a most particular regret that she died before I could make known to her my wife. For I have married in Boston a young lady of the most excellent, Priscilla Purdew, that is of what the commonalty refer to as Quakers, but call themselves Friends. She is entire after the heart of my zia, passionate against tyranny.
She has turned me quite aside from that notion of Herr Paffenrath’s, arguing with an eloquence admirable that 'twould be a thing entirely wrong to turn one’s back upon the evils of society, in particular that evil that she will describe as a foul stain upon her nation, slavery. Can I do aught but join with her in this struggle? No, no, I cannot, 'twould be the entire act of a coward to turn away from it.
Herr Paffenrath himself has lately been in Boston, but preaches no more that gospel of his concerning a simple community in nature. Has undergone some great change and argues that business and commerce are the foundations of society. My carissima sposa, that is most exceeding charitable towards all, arguing that even slave-holders may yet be led to the Light, takes him in exceeding dislike.
Mr Swann, that I apprehend you are acquainted with, gets on exceedingly in society here. Has lately lectured publicly upon the poets of the modern day to audiences most enthusiastic. 'Tis supposed he will shortly be offered a post at Harvard University, that is of some antiquity as that counts in this land.
Dearest marchesa, have you opportunity I should be exceeding obliged for the conveyance of my news to a certain lady, assuring her that my heart ever holds a most especial place for her, and that I honour her maternal dedication.
Believe me, esteemed marchesa, ever your humble and devoted
Reynaldo di Serrante