July 30, 1882.
DEAR WILLIAM, — . . . You do not know what a lovely Sunday this is here. The sea breeze is blowing, the palaces are shining, the people are chattering, the sky is a delicious blue, and you, if you were only here, would add another picture to your gallery which would be worth keeping all your life. Since last Sunday we have strolled through southern France, seen Provence with its wealth of old Roman remains, and sailed, with the loveliest passage, across from Marseilles to this delightful town. Tomorrow, we start by steamer for Leghorn, Pisa, and Florence. Northern Italy will have the next three weeks, — until James leaves us for home, and the whole party goes to pieces. We have had some hot weather, but no-thing oppressive, — nothing like what I fear you have had at home.
We are evidently going to have a troubled year in Europe, and just at present it cannot be nice to go to India. It seems most doubtful what will be the end, especially if, as now seems likely, the religious question gets mixed up with it, and a Mohammedan sacred war is proclaimed. England is sure to come out strong. Her action in Egypt must certainly be for the advantage of civilization and the world.