Rossetti Archive Textual Transcription

Document Title: Notebook Pages (Notebook I, Duke Library)
Author: Dante Gabriel Rossetti
Date of Composition: 1863-1869
Scribe: DGR

The full Rossetti Archive record for this transcribed document is available.

page: [0]
Rossetti, Dante Gabriel

Writings: XXV. Note Book I
Image of page [1] page: [1]
Manuscript Addition: 98
Editorial Description: WMR's notation
Manuscript Addition: 24
Editorial Description: The number is written in a circle by WMR
Note: The notes on this page, all by WMR, gloss his editorial involvement with the notebook in 1898-1899.



fit to mount
Taken out &

kept with



Also personal memoranda

& a few verses
Begins June/63

but page given to Helen [Agresti]

for autographs

contains this date

Done with 3/12/99
Image of page [2] page: [2]
Note: This is a series of three brief sketches for the spiral brooch that DGR designed.
Image of page [3] page: [3]
Note: Perhaps the reference is to Mrs. Maria Spartali Stillman
Mem: to send flowers to the

vases on M's birthday, & find out

what day it is in April ? 27

Note: DGR's projected painting to illustrate Dante's Beatricean sonnet (whose first line DGR's quotes). This was one of Dante's minor poems that DGR did not translate.
Subject:— “Di donne io vidi una

gentile schiera” treated something

like the Beloved with Love in

the foreground

Minister.— Glass £4-10/- Corner

Cupboard £3 Chair £1 Carved

oak bed foot £1
Image of page [4] page: [4]
Note: A small leaf is pasted on a half sheet of notebook paper. The second of the two prose translations is written on the half sheet vertically next to the pasted down leaf; the handwriting may belong to Swinburne.
Note: DGR's copy of the original Greek epigram with a free verse translation and two prose translations, the second subsequent to the first.
  • So by clowns heels the wild hyacinth lies lower
  • And trampled into earth the purple flower.
Like the hyacinth that the shepherds on the

mountains trample with their feet—and its

purple flower upon the ground:—
Like as the hyacinth in the mountains

shepherds mar with their feet tread down

& on the ground the purple flower.
Image of page [5] page: [5]
Note: A small sheet pasted on the notebook page carries Shelley's translation of the passage from Goethe and the original German text. DGR's verse translation is scripted on the notebook page to the right and runs vertically.
F. Who is that yonder?

M. Mark her well. It is


F. Who?

M. Lilith, the first wife of Adam.

Beware of her fair hair, for she excels

All women in the magic of her locks:

And, when she winds them around a

young man's neck,

She will not ever set him free again.

Wer ist denn das?

Betrachte sie genau:

Lilith ist das.


Adam's erste Frau.

Nimm dicht in Archt vor ihren schönen


Vor diesem Schmuck, mit dem sie einzig


Wenn sie damait den jungen Mann


So läszt sie ihn sobald nicht wieder fahren.
  • Hold thou thy heart against her shining hair,
  • If by thy fate she spread it once for thee.
  • For when she nets a young man in that snare,
  • So twines she him he never may be free
Image of page [6] page: [6]
Note: This is DGR's projected picture to illustrate Dante's sestina “Al poco giorno” . DGR quotes lines 9-10.
Note: This is DGR's initial note for the painting he projected in the following note.
Deleted Text

Subject — Figure holding glass globe

reflecting landscape

Subject — Pietra degli Scrovigni

among ricks seated on a stone — holding glass globe

reflecting fertile hilly landscape. “Che non

la muove se non come pietra Lo

dolce tempo che riscalda i colli.”

Housemaid came 20 April

Deleted Text

Green £50 Oct 22. (bill

dated 4th May for 6 months & 15 days after date)

with 3 days grace.

Lent Smetham Brown Indian

dressing gown & green smock frock.


Whose glorious beauty is a fading flower

Isaiah (cf Ephraim)

Note: The notebook entry refers in some way to DGR's verse translation of the two Sappho epigrams.
For “Sappho's Apple“—Pearls lying in

a glass casket in an open cupboard

Image of page [7] page: [7]
Note: DGR's dietary instructions from his doctor, John Marshall.
(from John Marshall)

Eat Meat, Poultry, Game, Fish, Oysters,

Kidneys, Green vegetables, stewed

fruit, Ripe Fruit

Small quantity of Toast or Rusk

Very few potatoes
Drink Thin wines or Cyder

(Summer) Claret or Chablis

with equal parts cold water

(winter)D o with half as much

hot water

& nutmeg

very little tea or coffee

Avoid or Reduce

much Bread, Potatoes,

Sugar, Beer, Spirits,

Cocoa, Chocolate, Olive Oil,

Eggs, Bacon—

Deleted Text

Nov 7 (Smith 73-153 £61 — 1st May

30 (Ludlow 40 - 13 - 11 — 1st April

£31-10(?) (Terry 36 - 15 - 4 Feb 17

Feb (£30 Porter Feb 17

(£33 Walker 1st April


Image of page [8] page: [8]
Marble dealer—Smith

Street Westminster

Wills — Gt St Andrews St (or

Little) Seven Dials. Sets up

animals to paint from

Sara Howes

D r [Merrion?]

[Normanton Cottage?]

North End [?]. [Fulham?]

£14 wages

Note: The subject for a burlesque drawing.
Hymen & Cupid. Door of marriage

chamber hung with garlands. Hymen

standing sentinel & preventing Cupid

from peeping in at keyhole.
Deleted Text

Feb 21 £30 Porter

Feb 21 £31 to Terry

April 1 £33 Walker

Image of page [9] page: [9]
Note: Three small leaves cut from the same notebook.
The “Cratur” of the Irish Volcano

—a whiskey bottle with little Irishmen

swarming up it & taking fire at the

Byfield House—about 3 miles

South of Weybridge—over railway

bridge to the on the left side of

the railway
B's prices. Bust 30 g s in Plaster, 35

in Terra Cotta, 90 in marble & 80 in bronze

Statuettes 25 in terra cotta, 40 in bronze.

Deleted Text

Arthur. £50. 20th Oct.

Wareham £22-5-6. 21 July

L's head. 16 1/8 — 12 inches

Note: Subject for an unexecuted picture.
For Dante to match Beatrice — background

—Love in black — & Beatrice in white walking away

back view
Image of page [10] page: [10]
Note: Versos of the three small leaves cut from the notebook.
Winchelsea — Northram House

—Tenterden, Kent about 10 miles

[?], good inn kept by Tabrett, within

a drive of Rye. Cranbrooke, Dutch

[weaving?] town.

Ask J P S. to dinner & T J & Traer.
Nov. Lent Brown peacock fan.
Grocer. £26-6-11 Feb. (for 8th)

2 months bill
Deleted TextGreen grocer. £25. 18 March (for 15)

3 months bill
To give photos of my designs to

Smetham, Johnson (& get framed) , Shields, Taylor

Rev d Blunt, Howell, Miller, Burton

Craven Mackinnon
Title for Comic Journal— Gas, of the

London Luminary. Cover, a large

gaslamp with the title on it and

dark view of London street behind.
Image of page [11] page: [11]
Note: Another notebook page must have originally come at this point with the drawing that illustrates the following picture notes.
Note: Three separate notes describing the details in the picture.
M. S.'s mistress standing by the girl with a cup

of magic wine ready, & looking at her with pity.

Deer-hound with his head up howling at the spell,—women

trying to stop him—or perhaps old woman frowning & railing

at him from corner.

Michael lying along the front of the picture

at the girl's feet.

Death's head moth fluttering round the burning lock of hair.

Perhaps two opening above the side seats with a

number of girls watching—M. S's harem.

Raven picking up scraps in old woman's lap, while she

cuts a silver cross from the girl's girdle. Michael

Scott might be seated upright with his head against the

wall watching the burning of the hair & perhaps slipping a

magic ring on the girl's finger.
Image of page [11] page: [11]
Note: The page is a mass of notations for paying various household bills.
Transcription Gap: page of text (information in digital image)
Image of page [12] page: [12]
Note: The page is a mass of notations for paying various household bills.
Transcription Gap: page of text (information in digital image)
Image of page [13] page: [13]
Note: The page is a mass of notations for paying various household bills. It is particularly important for establishing the chronology of the notebook: entires here show that DGR was writing in the book between December 1868 and June 1869.
Transcription Gap: all of the page of text except the last entry (information in digital image)
Size of Lilith 38 x 33
Image of page [14] page: [14]
Sight of Tibullus

22 3/4 x 18 3/4
Transcription Gap: all of the page of text except the first entry (marginal information about expenses; see digital image)
Image of page [15] page: [15]
Lent Solomon bit

of blue & silver brocade

(Wareham) & Purple


N.B. £5 for Ellis

Miss L. Wilson

Stage Door


p er favor of Mr Howell

introduced by A. Glover Esq

Lent Brown velvet cote hardie

kirtle with separate [?]

and angel's dress. Also Green Kirtle.
Image of page [16] page: [16]
Note: A drawing of woman with her head tilted slightly to the right, and apparently seated facing forward, is faintly visible beneath the page's texts.
Transcription Gap: first half of the page of text (marginal information about daily expenses; see digital image)
  • With golden mantle, rings, & necklace fair,
  • It likes her best to wear
  • Only a rose within her golden hair.
Note: DGR has marked “Stet” beside the tercet in the left margin
  • Con Ha manto d'oro, collana ed anelli,
  • Le piace Ma vuole aver con quelli
  • Non altro che una rosa ai suoi capelli.
Image of page [17] page: [17]
N.B. Kate Howell has bracelet

of emeralds — thus

[design inserted by DGR]

Mem: Send photos: to

Mrs Blackmore
Subject: Last scene in the

Cruel Sister— The spirit

standing by the harper with

her hands on his as he plays the harp which plays alone,

and looking at the lover or the sister . All

the personages watching the

harp in astonishment without

seeing the Spirit; except the Cruel

sister, who sits upright looking

at her—

N B Eatwell keeps French

stick charcoal.
Image of page [18] page: [18]
Mem: Quando l'aquarella delle

Tre Rose sarà avanguta, far

produce a C. una piccola aquarella

per cento lire, accio che ci sia più

da ricevere sulle Tre Rose

June 5. Lent Brown

yellow & silver cloak, & fragment

of Blue & silver brocade with birds

got from Wareham

  • Robe d'or, mais rien ne veut
  • Qu'une rose à ses cheveux.
  • A golden robe, yet will she wear
  • Added TextGolden-robed, she yet will wear
  • Only a rose in her golden hair.
Image of page [19] page: [19]
Note: The page, torn at the top, is a mass of notations for paying various household bills.
Mrs. Proctor, Mrs Cooper, Matthews

Lawrence, 6 Wells St. Millais

Ch[?], 28 London St—£20-10-0

Mantell [?] Middle[?]
Deleted Text

M Moses, 189 Oxford St W. £4-70

Moorehead & Glaa[?] 152 Strand £7-12-9

W. B. Verity 2 Charles St. West, Woburn

Terrace West, £5-18-9

Steam Bleaching Compy £4-1-2

F. S. Ellis, 33 King St £9-19 (Lat. Dict,

to deduct)

E. Parsons, 45 Brompton Rd £2-9

G[?] Cailvetti 39 Cranbourne St £15-4-0

K. Keating [?] Frairs £4-4-6

J Charles 9 Arabella Row SW £20-6-5

Bartlin[?] & Co 18 Bl[?] St £5-12-6

Mrs Cohen 12 Charles St Soho £2-5-0

J. S. Phillips £0-16-0

J Stanton 22 Davies St [?]Sq £4-0-2

S B Faller 61 Pall Mall £2-1

Howell & Co 32 K.William St. £16-2-6

Image of page [19v] page: [19v]
Note: This page continues the notations for household bills, and is not transcribed.
Image of page [20] page: [20]
Note: Hidden behind the text is the full-length sketch of a nude woman, perhaps at her bath.
Sir J. Soane's Museum

open Thursdays & Fridays

in April May & June—

some other day during the rest

of the week

Motto:— Non si sa

E. J. P. to Maclennan

photos to Paton
Image of page [21] page: [21]
Housemaid came 15 Jany /67

Mrs. D. Basil W. [?] Proctor

Here followeth a maid, well apparelled

that shall sing a song of the birth

of Christ 's birth to the tune of Balulalow

Jesus Christus hodie

Natu est de Virgine

For plain scarlet try laying ground

with Venetian or Indian red &

white to the full depth of the

glazing with orange vermilion

Feb. 22 /67 Lent Saffi

Poeti del Primo Secolo 1 vol

Nannucci Manuale 2 vols

Trucchi Poesie Italiane

ined 4 vols—Barberino

Dac: d'Amore 1 vol Reggiamente &c 1 vol.

Fraticelli 3 vols.
Image of page [22] page: [22]
Note: blank page except for a pasted strip of paper with some odd line marks
Image of page [23] page: [23]
Deleted Text

To Bower £18-0-9

Nov 15th (for 12th)

Deleted Text

To Mr Keeling £22-7-6

payable 1st April 1866

Andrews: Latin English Lexicon—

Sampson Low 47 Ludgate Hill 1863 price 18/-

Lent to Chapman 23 Sept/65

1 green kirtle 1 white surcoat

1 white & yellow cote hardie with

kirtle to match

  • Remember me whom am La Pia. Me
  • Siena, me, Maremma, made, unmade.
  • Added TextOr: In Siena & Maremma born & dead
  • He knows this well whose wife I was,—even he
  • Who with one/his ring betrothed me & wed
  • Added TextWith whose one gemmed ring I was betrothed & wed.
  • Added Textfair jewel I was ringed & wed

Put charcoal in water to keep

plants for painting. 2 tablespoon

fuls for a tumbler or so
Image of page [24] page: [24]
Thurs 19 October 1865 Housemaid came

Mem: To get Johnson's photos

of Magdalene and Hest. Ros. framed

same size for him

H. P. £5 payable every 14th Feby

& 14th Aug.

Mem: Write to Hes: Dixon &

Mrs Proctor & Mrs Dalrymple & Bowyer when Beloved is done

Gambart £100 /19 March

Address about silver plate

—spoons forks &.c

Signor Marchetti

Apsley House


Green £50 payable Aug 31
Image of page [25] page: [25]
Subject— Death of Lady Macbeth

Lady M. nearly dead on pillow, but still

rubbing her hands. Women facing back

from bed ? or asleep. Doctor kneeling watching by

her. M's army seen through windows marching out

seen transparent against window (perhaps) witches

Dec 28 /64. Lent Scott, Palm branch

Japanese brown robe, Indian blue

& white scarf, & orange drapery

belonging to Sandys.

Deleted Text

To receive from Rae £50 on

12 Feb. & £50 on 15 March

Mem: To paint screen for M's


Marks, £100. 3rd (for 1st) Aug May

29 January. Lent Solomon

gold Indian bracelet

30 Jan. Sunday fortnight to go

to Anthony's
Image of page [26] page: [26]
Mem: To ask Ruskin about

Lizzie's “Sister Helen” — also about

reviewing B. in A.S.
Transcription Gap: remainder of page (incidental memoranda that can be viewed on digital image)
Image of page [27] page: [27]
  • Ding dong for Bow-man
  • Poor Bowman's dead & gone
  • Left seven sons alive
  • Mickerly, Mackerly
  • Richard & Shackerly
  • James, John & Thomas—
  • Bring me in ding dong church
  • By the side of my dear mother
  • Make my grave long and deep
  • 10Strew it with flowers sweet
  • Where I may lie & sleep
  • Now and for ever.
Subject: Fair Rosamund fastening

skein to branch of tree
Transcription Gap: remainder of page (incidental memoranda that can be viewed on digital image)
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Transcription Gap: remainder of page (incidental memoranda that can be viewed on digital image)
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Transcription Gap: remainder of page (incidental memoranda that can be viewed on digital image)
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Manuscript Addition: By Gabriel / c. 1868 / La Pia
Editorial Description: WMR's note in box at upper left of the drawing
Note: The page is an early sketch for the oil painting DGR began in 1868 but did not complete until 1880. DGR's translation of the relevant passsage in the Purgatorio is copied vertically along the right side of the drawing.
Note: The title of the picture is inscribed on a cartouche in the lower center of the drawing.
  • Ah! where on earth thy voice again is heard
  • And thou from the long road hast rested thee,
  • (After the second spirit said the third)
  • Remember me whom am La Pia: Me
  • Siena, me Maremma, made, unmade.
  • He knoweth this thing in his heart,—even he
  • With whose fair jewel I was ringed & wed.
Image of page [31] page: [31]
Transcription Gap: remainder of page (incidental memoranda that can be viewed on digital image)
Image of page [32] page: [32]
Transcription Gap: remainder of page (incidental memoranda that can be viewed on digital image)
Electronic Archive Edition: 1
Source File: nb0002.duke.rad.xml
Copyright: Digital images used with permission of the Duke University Rare Book, Manuscript, and Special Collections Library.