From Marie Guérin to Jeanne La Néele - December 21, 1891.

From Marie Guérin to Jeanne La Néele - December 21, 1891.

Dear little Jeanne

I received your kind little letter, it has been a long time since the postman last uttered my name; you can say the same of me but you see to excuse this long silence, we’re going to blame it on the pharmacy. For the whole time that the pharmaceutical perplexities and bother lasted, by writing to you I for one would perhaps have brought you some pleasure, but you had other [1 v°] fish to fry than waste your time reading your little sister’s babble, and then other letters were more impatiently expected. Your little letter was so affectionate that I would like to reply to you in the same way, but you know Marie, she is not a girl able to express herself or make demonstrations, but deep down, there is some good in her. She seems worse than she really is and deep down in her heart there is a big chasm that holds a lot of love for her little Jeanne. You say you have loved me since I was born, I regret I am unable to say as much. I could not reason enough to understand who you were. However, little by little I definitely began to see you as a little baby who was the same age as I was [2 r°]and with whom I had fun. And so it was at that moment that my little tongue loosened and one of my first words was without a doubt Jeanne. It was perhaps a little difficult to pronounce but people understood my baby talk enough to know whom I wanted to name.  

Let’s get back to today!... The babies have become grown women and big young ladies. The big young lady, not the one from Hérouville but the one from Lisieux, has grown not in height but in wisdom and has been charged with many messages for Mrs. La Néele.

First of all, Aunt Clémence must go to Bayeux for Mr. Jourdain’s burial. She probably won’t go via Caen, and in any case she will do no more than change trains [2 v°] and already be gone, whereas she begs Mrs. La Néele to excuse her if she doesn’t stop at your house, even for five minutes, because as Mr. Campion is very sick, she is anxious to pay him a little visit.

I would like to know, if I’m not being nosy, whether you have bought batiste handkerchiefs for Léonie’s New Year’s gift. I bought 2 today, but I took them conditionally. Please would you give me the information as soon as you are able.

Farewell, dear little Jeanne, I send you all my love, Francis included.

Your little sister


I have been asked to convey you an infinite number of kisses from everyone. Mama has kept to her room since last night. She is fairly well at the moment.

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