Anthony Trollope: Barchester Towers


Mr Slope, as we have said, left the palace with a feeling of considerable triumph. Not that he thought that his difficulties were over; he did not so deceive himself; but he felt that he had played his first move well, as well as the pieces on the board would allow; and that he had nothing with which to reproach himself. He first of all posted the letter to the archbishop, and having made that sure he proceeded to push the advantage which he had gained. Had Mrs Bold been at home, he would have called on her; but he knew that she was at Plumstead, as he wrote the following note. It was the beginning of what, he trusted, might be a long and tender series of epistles.

'My dear Mrs Bold,--You will understand perfectly that I cannot at present correspond with your father. I heartily wish that I could, and hope the day may be not long distant, when mists shall have cleared away, and we may know each other. But I cannot preclude myself from the pleasure of sending you these few lines to say that Mr Q. has to-day, in my presence, resigned any title that he ever had to the wardenship of the hospital, and that the bishop has assured me that it is his intention to offer it to your esteemed father.

'Will you, with my respectful compliments, ask him, who I believe is a fellow visitor with you, to call on the bishop either on Wednesday or Thursday, between ten and one. This is by the bishop's desire. If you will so far oblige me as to let me have a line naming either day, and the hour which will suit Mr Harding, I will take care that the servants shall have orders to show him in without delay. Perhaps I should say no more,--but still I wish you could make your father understand that no subject will be mooted between his lordship and him, which will refer at all to the method in which he may choose to perform his duty. I for one, am persuaded that no clergyman could perform it more satisfactorily than he did, or than he will do again.

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