Josephine Butler to 'Dearest Friend' [Miss Forsaith]

Scope and Content

Photocopy of a letter. Written from [Wooler, Northumberland]

Says she is alone 'but content to be so'. Lately she has been devoting herself to records of the Butler family for the benefit of her grandchildren. The pedigree of the Gray family is well known and has been published. The Butler pedigree shows no aristocratic descent, They 'were chiefly and eminently known for goodness and learning'. She knew the children's great grandfather, the Dean of Peterborough, intimately; 'he was a Saint indeed, wonderfully gifted, but deeply humble and spiritual'. She has been alone nearly week so has been glad of an absorbing task especially as she is very anxious about dear Charles [her youngest son in British Columbia]. She is pleased that Mt. Gregory is to have the 'Shield' editorship for a time, and cannot understand the objection of the British Committee to the proposed arrangement. She thinks he will be ready to take any suggestions from her friend and herself.

Asks if her friend has read in Mr Levy's paper [see Note] the letter he asked her to write about Japan. Had she been addressing a Christian editor she could have said more about the Christian character of the Japanese. Recalls the two Buddhist priests whom she and her husband had met when they were first married. The priests had come to consult early Buddhist texts in the Bodleian.

She is looking forward to a visit from her grandson, Bob, at the New Year.

Administrative / Biographical History

Christmas Day 1905

Max Miller wrote a life of him [The Buddha] in a book called 'The Light of Asia'.

A mistake of JB's. The Light of Asia was written by Sir Edwin Arnold.

'Have you read in his paper [JH Levy, manager of Personal Rights Association] the letter he asked me to write about Japan?'

JB took exception to a letter appearing in Mr Levy's paper 'The Individualist' about prostitutes in Japan with quotations from the 'Lancet' JB wrote to Henry Wilson and finally to JH Levy. (See letters of 26 Nov, 1-2 Dec) and he asked to write a letter about Japan for his paper)

Biog: The Very Rev. George Butler; Dean of Peterborough; HM of Harrow; JH Levy