Gilbert's Letter to The Times of 2 February 1886
Issue 31672, pg. 8 col B

International Copyright

Sir,--The following instance of munificence on the part of Messrs. Harper and Brothers, the wealthy New York publishers, exhibits a sympathy with distressed British authors which deserves recognition. I have not, however, felt justified in taking advantage of their liberality, for reasons which my reply will make clear.

Your obedient servant,

Savoy Theatre, Jan. 31


"Harper and Brothers, Franklin-square, New York, Jan. 15

"Dear Sir,--We enclose herewith draft on Mr. Sampson Low, at one day's sight, for £10 in acknowledgment for reprinting "Original Comic Operas" in our Franklin-square Library. Please to advise us of the receipt of the draft.

"We send you by mail a few copies of our edition of the book.

"Respectfully yours,


"W.S. Gilbert, Esq."
"39, Harrington-gardens, South Kensington, Jan. 31.

"Gentlemen,--You have been good enough to forward me a donation of £10. Notwithstanding that for many years I have been pillaged, right and left, by such of your countrymen as are engaged in publishing and theatrical ventures, I am not yet reduced to such a state of absolute penury as would justify me in taking advantage of the charitable impulse which prompted your gift. But the Victoria Hospital for Children stands sorely in needs of funds, and I have therefore taken the liberty of handing your cheque to the secretary of that institution.

"You are quite at liberty to make any public use of this letter.

"Your obedient servant,

"Messrs. Harper and Brothers, New York." Previous letter Next letter

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