From Marie Martin to her sister Pauline - May 22, 1873.

From Marie Martin to her sister Pauline - May 22, 1873.

Alençon Thursday 22nd May 1873

Dear little Pauline

I am happy to be able to write you a little letter today because I know you will be very glad. I can tell you I have recovered I’m not sorry I can assure you because I was very bored in bed. This morning I got up earlier than on the other days because I went to eight o’clock Mass. I would very much have liked to go to the Pavilion (the little property that Mr. Martin acquired as early as 1857, in Rue des Lavoirs, to the south of the town) but Mama thought it too far, so I didn’t go. I can’t wait till your holidays, if only you knew how much I’m looking forward to seeing you! We’ll have lots of fun too we'll go to Thérèse’s wet-nurse in the carriage, we’ll pick big daisies and cornflowers we’ll enjoy ourselves so much won’t we my petit paulin1! In ten days there’s going to be a big festival in Alençon (for an exhibition) that will last a whole week, we will see the torchlight procession, and on Sunday at the showground there will be a beautiful firework display and at that precise moment you will be here in Alençon and you will have lots of fun. There will also be a balloon in the square and we'll go to see it.

I went to bed for a while after dinner today, I had eaten some lettuce and Mama feared it would do me harm, but it hasn’t at all. The garden is very pretty apart from the circle where there are only a few geranium cuttings but in the middle there is a beautiful rosebush in flower it is magnificent. There are also 2 other small rosebushes in the side-beds, but they are still only in bud and will blossom soon I hope. Louise (Louise Marais, the maid, who showed clear favouritism to Céline) curls little Céline’s hair every Sunday, she is dressed all in white with pretty yellow leather boots that Mama recently bought her. If you saw her I am sure [1v°] you would think she looked good enough to eat.

Little Pauline please give my love to dear Aunt, tell her I love her with all my heart and that I haven’t forgotten her. If I’d have been able to I would have written to her today, but you see I’m already really tired from writing your letter, when you come to Alençon I will write to her as well as to my Sister M. Paula (born Albertine Cayez (8/2/1833 - 5/10/1911), a school mistress who became Head Mistress of the boarding school from 1865 to 1875). Please tell her that I thank her for the allowances she made me for my honorary ribbon I am very happy to have it and I will try to keep it safe. Thank all my dear teachers and my friends for the prayers they have said for me and for the interest they have shown, I am really grateful I assure you. Whatever you do don’t forget to tell Aunt to thank Our Mother for all the blessings she sent me. Tell Edith (Edith de la Porte de Ste Gemme, later Mrs. de Mesmay (1860‑1927) was Marie’s schoolmate. Pauline took her first Communion with Edith’s sister, Geneviève de la Porte) and Renée (?) that I send my love to them as well as to Berthe Chauvin (later Mrs. Fillion), thank Edith for me for the lovely emblem she sent me and tell her that it brought me great pleasure, as did her and Renée’s little letters. I will write to them as soon as I can in a fortnight at most.


Also tell M. Morel (Marie-Louise Morel-Bignon) that I received her letter and her picture which is very nice, I will write to her at the same time as Edith. You must know all those who have sent me tokens if I had to name them it would take too long please thank them for me.

Farewell petit Paulin whom I love so much, until the day we see each other again, I send you all my love! And you know how much that is!

Your little sister

M. Martin.

Thursday, May 22nd, 1873.

I am writing this at half past four I am sitting at my desk I'd like to go for a walk because today is Ascension Day but I know very well that I can't because it would tire me out.


1 Term of endearment

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