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Knox, Henry (1750-1806) to Lucy Knox

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Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC02437.00125 Author/Creator: Knox, Henry (1750-1806) Place Written: Boston, Massachusetts Type: Manuscript letter Date: 1773 and 7 March 1774 Pagination: 3p. ; 22.8 x 18.6 cm.

Summary of Content: Later copy of two love letters from Henry Knox to Lucy Flucker (Knox) written during their courtship. In the first, Knox complains of not receiving a message from Lucy, expresses his affection, and attempts to solidify plans for a meeting at a coffee house the following day. The second is an even more impassioned love letter in which he longs to see Lucy, asks if she has spoken with her father about their relationship, expresses anxiety over the unknown, and urges Lucy to never distrust his love. Refers to Lucy as Speria and himself as Fidelio. Henry and Lucy wed in June 1774.

Full Transcript: [In another hand]
Copies -
Two letters H.K. to L.F. 1773 & 1774

These two letters were among the submerged papers. The originals I send to Capt Thatcher, as they are ...more proper for a g.son, than the Maine Hist Soc.
I am uncertain who letter is from: perhaps the one signed by K with his own name is the second.
"Have you spoken to your father" &c in the letter of March 7 - does it refer to his current [illegible] engagement, or to the time of marriage?

I have been upon the utmost rack of expectation for above two hours past, expecting some message from you. I almost (torn out) for the (torn out) yours (torn out) is there any thing I can say or do that will affect it. If there is command it and shall be done. If my assurance of the most perfect disinterested [struck: of] love that ever filled the breast of an youth, - if the most sacred promises of the continuation of that love with interest, as time increases upon it will tend to raise your Spirits you have them, and God Almighty is witness that if all the riches of the world were in my possession they should back my asseverations. My tooth by the help of two or three jerks of the Doctor's is past giving me pain.
To the Coffee house tomorrow evening? Do you ask me? Or is it only like the [struck: burthen] [inserted: banter] affixed at the head of your letter? N- N- N- No: but let that matter - (torn out) [2] that will give you or me pain. (torn out) expect tomorrow afternoon with as much anxiety as this; but let me hear from or see you. I could write a volume to you, but I write so much in a hurry as your woman is waiting, that you could not read. God have you in his kind protection is the desire of your Harry Knox.
P.S. I forgot. I send the Gentle Shepherd.
March 7 74
Were I writing to a lady who was indifferent to me, and to whom I thought myself indifferent, possibly imagination might expand herself and endevor at a feeble sparkle. Prompted by ambition and an expectation of approbations every reservoir of the brain would be put to the most exquisite torture to produce one seeming brilliant thought. But how opposite to this, my dearest Speria, when I am writing to thee! Every particle of heat seems to be eradicated from the head, or else entirely absorbed in the widely raging fire emitted from the heart. - Although I have no opportunity of [struck: of] sending this, yet I write under the perfect confidence of some one turning up. [3] How much I long to hear from you I might with difficulty say; but to tell you how much I long to see you would be impossible. So my good girl, let me hear from you some way or other -
I wish the medium of our correspondence settled; in order to which I must endevor to see you when we will settle it.
What news? Have you spoken to your father, or he to you upon the subject? What appearance has this (torn) grand affair at your house at present? Do you go to the ball tomorrow evening? I am in a state of anxiety heretofore unknown. My only consolation is in you, and in order it should be well grounded permit me to beg two things of you with the greatest ardency - never distrust my affection for you without the most rational and convincing proof - if you do not hear from me in a reasonable time do not lay it to my want of love, but want of opportunity; and do not, in consequence of such distrust, omit writing to me as often as possible.
My love is, as it were, in its infancy. It will increase to youth - it will arrive at the most perfect manhood - it will grow with such a steady brightness that if the youth of both sexes do not esteem it their chiefest glory to come and light their tapers at it, want of discernment must be the reason. Pho! Pho! profound nonsense. No, no; Speria no. But if it is thank yourself; but don't [inserted: distrust] the sincerity of your Fidelio.
Monday evening March 7 74
See More

People: Knox, Henry, 1750-1806
Knox, Lucy Flucker, 1756-1824

Historical Era: American Revolution, 1763-1783

Subjects: Love LettersWomen's History

Sub Era: Road to Revolution

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