Letter of Mary Somerville to John Murray, 28 March 1857

Somerville liked to pass on gossip, like the recent marriage of scientist which she writes about in this letter: 'David Brewster 76 years old [he was actually 75] was married a few days ago to Miss Parnell aged 26' [she was actually 30].


Copyright National Library of Scotland

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of Mrs Murray and the children from medical
friends and always hear of them and you with
pleasure — we have all been well during the severe
winter, unusually severe for Tuscany and even yet
the weather is cold. Mr Somerville has never had a
complaint till ten days ago when he caught cold and
had a troublesome cough but I am happy to say it is
nearly gone and he is well again. —

I have just heard news that has surprised us not a little
Sir David Brewster 76 years old was married a few days
ago to Miss Parnell aged 26 a grocers daughter. Sir
David and his daughter have been living at Cannes
which he left a few days before the wedding without
saying a word to his daughter of his engagement but left
her with the Duchess Dow. of Argyle who had to tell her of
it. They were married at Nice and are going to
Rome so we shall have a visit of the sposi on their
way either going or coming. —

I was delighted to hear that Woronzow's leg is quite
well again but I fear he is too busy to take the
exercise he requires — We all join in very kind
remembrance to Mrs Murray and believe me

ever sincerely yours

Mary Somerville