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Brev fra H.C. Andersen til Horace E. Scudder 26. maj 1873

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Dato: 26. maj 1873
Fra: H.C. Andersen   Til: Horace E. Scudder
Sprog: dansk, engelsk.

Schweiz, d. 26. maj 1873.

Kjære fortræffelige Ven!

Det er længe siden De hørte fra mig, altforlænge siden! men det er gaaet langsommeligt med min Bedring; først nu komme Kræfterne tilbage, først nu tør jeg løfte mig lidt ud af den Ro der var og er mig saa nødvendig. J eg er naaet Schweitz, har allerede en Maaned været her og i de sidste tre Uger brugt »Molken-Kur«, det vil sige drukket Valle høit heroppe paa Bjerget; jeg begynder at gaae omkring, kun at stige høiere, falder mig besværligt. Jeg er godt indquarteret i et udmærket Hotel, har een af mine unge Venner fra Danmark med mig; vi have den deiligste Udsigt til de evigt besneede Bjerge og hen over den prægtige Genfersø. Her er sommervarmt, Frugttræerne og Roserne blomstre, Luften er saa mild og let; her maa man faae sin Sundhed igjen. Imidlertid er det dog Lægens og min Bestemmelse at jeg nu forsøger Kuren paa et andet Sted og rimeligviis reiser strax efter Pindsen herfra. Glæder De mig med Brev, da vil det ikke let finde mig i Schweitz, send det derfor hellere til Kjøbenhavn adresseret til Hr Etatsraad E. Collin, Dronningens Tvergade No. 19. Den 14 April forlod jeg Danmark, netop strax efter at have modtaget Deres seneste Skrivelse med Anvisning paa London, der at have det Honorar der forundes mig for det hengaaede Halvaar; hjertelig Tak derfor! jeg har lært at kjende og skatte Deres Omhu for mig og mine Skrifter. Naar hører jeg om de af mine Eventyr De agtede at udgive og hvori De vilde optage Deres Gjengivelse af Lykke-Peer? Alt dette vilde jeg gjerne have sagt og skrevet strax efter at have modtaget Deres Brev, men Lægen ønskede ikke at jeg skrev Breve, jeg trængte aldeles til Ro. J eg har været meget syg, hele 6 Maaneder har jeg maattet blive i min Stue, paa enkelte Kjøretoure nær, i lukket Vogn. Endnu er jeg ikke kommet til Kræfter og har besværligt ved at gaae, som jeg allerede har sagt Dem i Brevet. Det var en lang Prøveisens Tid for mig i denne Vinter, men den har viist mig at jeg har prøvede Venner. Hvilken Omhu har man dog viist mig! og fra den Fattigste op til vort Kongehuus modtog jeg dagligt Beviser paa den største Deeltagelse. Ved Afreisen var jeg imidlertid for svag til at kjøre om til mine Venner og sige Levvel, men til den Kongelige Familie vilde og maatte jeg, det var mit Hjerte en Trang. - Hjerteligt og deeltagende blev jeg modtaget, Kongen, Dronningen, Kronprindsen og Kronprindsessen med deres to smaa Børn, ligesom ogsaa Prinds Valdemar og Prindsesse Thyra modtoge mig og for at jeg ikke skulde stige op af de høie Trapper vare de, vistnok, samlede i Stue-Etagen. Kongen forærede mig ved Afskeden sin egen Reise-Sæk, den han selv havde benyttet forrige Aar, da han besøgte Grækenland. Siden da jeg kom til mit Hjem og ud paa Aftenen stod ved Indpakningen til Reisen næste Formiddag, aabnedes min Dør og Kongen, ledsaget af Prinds Valdmar og sin Broder Prinds Hans, traadte ind, for endnu engang at see mig og sige mig Lev vel. Jeg var rørt til Taarer og jeg troer at Alle maa føle hvor mageløs hjertensgod og ædel Kong Christian den Niende er. Det Kongelige Huus i Danmark er tilvisse det elskeligste og meest velsignede; der er det skjønneste Familieliv, og den Hjertensgodhed det har forundt mig, vil og maa jeg føre med ind i Evigheden. - Afskeden fra selve Kjøbenhavn var ogsaa tung; jeg følte mig stærkt bevæget ved paa Banegaarden at see endnu engang saa mange kjære Venner, Mænd og Qvinder, Unge og Gamle. - I August maaned tænker jeg igjen at være i mit Fædreland, der at nyde en smuk Deel endnu af Sommeren og at Gud forunder mig Sundhed i den kommende Vinter; kalder han mig -? Mit Liv paa Jorden var det deiligste Eventyr og det slutter i Himlen; Gud være mig der naadig og god, ja altfor god her paa J orden. - Bring Deres Familie, ligesom ogsaa mine ærede Forlæggere de bedste Hilsener. Glæd mig snart med Brev, Etatsraad Collin vil altid vide hvor jeg opholder mig og strax afsende Deres mig altid saa kjærkomne Skrivelse; gid den bringe mig glædelige Efterretninger om mine Skrifter i Amerika og om nye Udgaver. Den reviderede Udgave af mit Livs Eventyr længes jeg særdeles efter. Og nu lev hjertelig vel! Gud glæde og velsigne Dem i alt godt. De vil ikke glemme Deres hengivne, tillidsfulde Ven! hvem kan jeg derovere i den nye Verden bedre betro mine Digtninger til end Dem, De gjengiver disse med Kjærlighed!

Hjerteligst

H. C. Andersen.

Hotel Righi Vaudois, Glion, Switzerland, May 26, 1873.

Dear and excellent friend:

It is long since you heard from me, much too long! But my recuperation has been tediously slow. Not until now is my strength returning. Not until now do I dare to break the quiet that was and is so necessary for me. I have reached Switzerland, have already been here a month, and in the last three weeks have taken the Molken-Kur, that is, I have drunk whey up here high on the mountain. I am beginning to walk about; but I find climbing difficult. I am comfortably lodged in an excellent hotel, and have one of my young Danish friends with me. We have the most lovely view of the eternally snow-clad mountains and out over the magnificent Geneva lake. The warmth of summer is here, the fruit trees and roses are in bloom, the air is so mild and light. Here, surely one should recover one's health.

Meantime the doctor and I agree that I should now try the cure some other place, and I shall presumably leave here just after Pentecost. If you are going to give me the pleasure of a letter, it would not easily find me in Switzerland. Better send it to Copenhagen, addressed in care of Councilor of State E. Collin, Dronningens Tvergade 19.

I left Denmark on April 14, immediately after having received your last letter with a draft on London, the honorarium vouchsafed me for the past half year to be cashed there. Hearty thanks for it! I have learned to know and appreciate your consideration for me and my writings. When shall I hear of those fairy tales of mine which you thought of publishing, and with which you were to include your translation of Lucky Peer? I would like to have said and mentioned all this just after receiving your letter, but the physician did not want me to write letters. I needed complete rest.

I have indeed been very ill. For all of six months I have had to stay in my room, except for an occasional drive in a closed carriage. I have not yet recovered my strength, and I find difficulty in walking, as I have already told you in this letter. This winter was long and trying for me, but it showed me that I had true friends. What solicitude, indeed, was shown me! From the very poorest to our royal house, I received proofs daily of the deepest sympathy. When the time for departure came, I was too weak to drive around to my friends and say goodbye. But I felt that I would and must go to the royal family; that lay much upon my heart. I was received with the greatest cordiality and sympathy. The King and Queen, the Crown Prince and Crown Princess with their two little children, as well as Prince Valdemar and Princess Thyra, received me, and probably so that I would not have to climb the long stairs, they had gathered on the first floor. On my leaving, the King presented me with his own knapsack, the one he had used the year before when he visited Greece. After my arrival home, and while I was busy later in the evening with my packing, preparatory to my departure the next forenoon, my door was opened, and the King, accompanied by his brother, Prince Hans,and Prince Valdemar stepped in to see me again and to say goodbye. I was moved to tears, and I think everyone must see how incomparably kind-hearted and noble King Christian IX is. The Danish royal house is certainly the most lovable that can be imagined, and the most blessed! The domestic life there is most beautiful, and the sincere kindness it has shown me is something that I shall and must bring with me into eternity. The departure from Copenhagen itself was tinged with sadness. I was much moved to see once more at the railway station so many dear friends, men and women, young and old.

In August I should be back again in my homeland, there to enjoy a pleasant portion of the summer that remains. And then if only God will grant me health in the approaching winter-will he call me? My life on earth has been the most delightful fairy tale, and its closing chapter will be in heaven. May God be gracious and good to me there; He has been much too good to me here upon earth.

Bring to your family, as well as to my esteemed publishers, the heartiest greetings. Give me the pleasure of a letter soon. Councilor of State Collin will always know where I am staying, and will always send me promptly your welcome letter. May it bring me happy news of my writings in America, and of new editions. I am especially anxious to hear about the revised edition of The Story of My Life. And now a hearty goodbye! May God give you joy and bless you in everything good. You will not forget your devoted and trusting friend! To whom indeed, over there in the New World, could I more confidently entrust my writings than to you, who render them with such love!

Most heartily,

H. C. ANDERSEN

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