The Hans Christian Andersen Center

Dato: 27. marts 1874
Fra: H.C. Andersen   Til: Horace E. Scudder
Sprog: dansk, engelsk.

Copenhagen, March 27, 1874.

Dear and excellent friend:

I have already received two letters from you this year, both so sincere and so precious. The one I got in the beginning of February; the other came with a draft for the semiannual honorarium, for which I thank you and my esteemed publishers. But not until now do yon get a letter and thanks from me. For a long time I have not been in a mood to write. My convalescence has proceeded but slowly. I have a liver ailment, and cannot regain my strength; I cannot, as before, disport myself in sociallife, visit the theaters, and-what is most disheartening of all- I do not feellike undertaking any kind of literary composition. All this has its effect on my disposition, and as age now lies before me, and not youth, I become despondent. Next week, on April 2, as you know, I shall complete my sixty-ninth year. When this [year] is closed, I shall have fulfilled the Biblical span and attained the highest age for man. Up to a year and a haH ago, before my ilIness, I felt no physical burden or weight of years. When Iwas with young people, I felt like one of them; and now I sit suffering in my small rooms while life is throbbing outside. You are now in your best years of vigor, and as I see from your letter of February, a married man. You have got yourself a home, a loving wife, and you are happy! God bless you and her! At one time I too dreamt of such a happiness, but it was not to be granted me. Happiness came to me in another form, came as my muse that gave me a wealth of adventure and songs. I have no right to complain; I wish indeed that I might live in good health and spirits for days and years. Should this happen, I should still scarcely get to America, which I have often wished to visit, that I might see all my friends there, talk with you, with Longfellow, Hurd and Houghton.

The little book Good Wishes for Children, I have received; and I send my greetings and thanks to the two young "ladies." I am sending herewith two photographs of myself, very good likenesses, which I shall ask you kindly to give to each of them.

I am very anxious to see the new edition of The Story of My Life. Y ou wrote me long ago that such an edition was to be published. When this has been done, I would like to receive a few copies. There was also some mention at one time of a new edition of Lucky Peer. The new monthly, Atlantic Monthly, I have received and wish to thank you for it. God grant that I may soon be in a condition to send a worthy contribution to it. The comedy of which you ask, and which you had read in a paper that I had recently written, I know nothing about.lt was perhaps one of my earlier fairy tale-comedies, which are often presented in the Casino theatre.= One of these has celebrated its one hundredth presentation. On the other hand, I sent you at one time a drama, When the Spaniards Were Here, which I believe may be read with interest. An edition of eighteen of my fairy tales and stories has now at last appeared in France, well translated by M. Gregoire, and most attractively gotten up. The illustrations are true to nature and well done. All the French papers have bestowed high praise upon the book, and it was reported to me that the book was sold out in the course of three weeks. A new edition is necessary.

Will you now greet your wife most heartily, as well as the dear and greatly admired Longfellow? Will you convey to Messrs. Hurd and Houghton my greetings and thanks for their kindly interest in me and my writings? Give me the pleasure of a letter before very long. May I hear that you and yours are in the best of health, and that you, as always, keep in sympathetic remembrance

your sincerely devoted friend,

H. C. ANDERSEN

Tekst fra: Se tilknyttede bibliografiposter

Kbenhavn, den 27. marts 1874.

Kjre, fortrffelige Ven! Allerede har jeg iaar modtaget to Breve fra Dem, begge saa hjertelige og kjrkomne, det ene fik jeg i Begyndelsen af Februar, det andet, ledsaget af en Anvisning paa det halvaarIige Honorar, hvorfor jeg takker Dem og mine rede Forlggere, men ikke fr nu faaer De Brev og Tak fra mig. Jeg har lnge ikke vret i Stemning til at skrive, det gaaer kun langsomt frem med min Bedring, jeg er syg i Leveren og kan ikke komme til Krfter, kan ikke som tidligere tumle mig i Selskabslivet, besge Theatrene og hvad der er det Tungeste, jeg fler mig ikke oplagt til nogen Slags Digtning, Alt dette virker paa Humeuret, og da jeg nu har Alderdommen for mig og ikke Ungdommen, bliver jeg let modls. I nste Uge, den 2den April fylder jeg, som De veed mit 69 Aar, naar det er sluttet har jeg jo fyldt Bibelens Ord, leved den hieste Menneskealder i endnu for halvandet Aar siden, fr min Sygdom, kjendte jeg ikke til Legems Tryk, ikke til Alderens Byrder, jeg var ung mellem de Unge og nu sidder jeg lidende i mine smaa Stuer, medens Livet rrer sig udenfor. De er nu i Deres Mandoms bedste Aar, og som jeg seer af Deres Brev, det jeg modtog i Februar, gtemand, har skabt Dem et Hjem, har en elskvrdig Hustru, og er lykkelig! Gud glde og velsigne Dem og hende! Engang drmte jeg ogsaa om en saadan Lykke, men den skulde nu ikke forundes mig, Lykken kom i en anden Skikkelse, kom som min Musa der gav mig en Rigdom af Eventyr og Sange.

Jeg tr ikke klage, jeg nsker endogsaa at jeg maa leve, med Sundhed og Aandsfriskhed Aar og Dage; om dette skeer, kom jeg dog neppe til Amerika, det jeg tidt har nsket at besge, see alle mine Venner der, tale med Dem, med Longfellow, Hord & Houghton. Den lille Bog Good wishes for Children, har jeg modtaget og sender min Hilsen og Tak til de to unge "Ladies", jeg sender to gode, meget lignende Portrtter af mig, vil De vre saa venlig at overrkke dem hver eet af disse. Meget lnges jeg efter at see den ny Udgave af mit Livs Eventyr De skrev mig forlnge siden til at en saadan vi1de udkomme, jeg nsker, naar det skeer, da at erholde nogle Exemplarer. Der var ogsaa engang Tale om Lykke Peer, at den vilde udkomme paa ny. Det nye Maanedskrift Atlantic Monthly har jeg modtaget og takker Dem herfor! give Gud jeg snart maatte see mig istand til at sende et vrdigt Bidrag til samme. Den Comedie De sprger om, som De i en Avis har lst jeg nyeligt har skrevet, kjender jeg ikke; det har vist vret een af mine tidligere Eventyr-Comedier, som ofte ere givne i Casino Theater, een af disse har feiret sin 100de Forestilling. Derimod sendte jeg Dem en Gang et Drama: Da, Spanierne vare her, dette troer jeg kan lses med Interresse. I Frankerige er nu endelig udkommet en Udgave af 18 af mine Eventyr og Historier, godt oversat af Mr. Gregoire, og glimrende udstyret. Illustrationerne er naturlige og dygtige. Alle franske Blade har, srdeles rosende omtalt Bogen, og den blev, som man mlder mig, udsolgt i Lbet af 3 Uger, et nyt Oplag, er ndvendigt. Vil De nu hilse paa det hjerteligste Deres Hustru, ligesom ogsaa den kjre hit, beundrede Longfellow; vil De bringe de Herrer, Hurd et Houghton min Hilsen og Tak for Deres venlige Interesse for mig og mine Skrifter. Gld mig, om ikke lnge, men en Skrivelse. Gid at jeg hre at De og Deres ere i bedste Velbefindende og at De, som altid, har i deeltagende Tanke Deres

hjerteligt, hengivne Ven

H. C. Andersen

Til Hr. Horace E. Scudder Esq.

Tekst fra: Solveig Brunholm