Page:Life of Octavia Hill as told in her letters.djvu/120

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100
chap.
LIFE OF OCTAVIA HILL

three little shields. I think you will quite understand about them from the drawing I send you. It is the window Ruskin refers to (thirteenth century, Oakham Castle). I could not resist doing a little towards beginning to shade it; but, in spite of that, I think you'll understand it. I leave it entirely to you to apply the suggestion, if practicable. Tell Mr. Durrant I admire the arrangement of large square panes very much. I think I even prefer it to the quarries. I am very glad indeed to have influenced, in the least degree, his wish to have Gothic windows. I'll make a finished drawing, or clear tracing of this window, if you want it; but yours will be so simple that this will not be of any use, I think, except to explain the plan, which my rough sketch will do.

I have seen Ruskin's manager to-day, and had a long talk about Ruskin, which I enjoyed much. …

P.S.—There is not the smallest necessity for the aperture of the window being of a pointed shape. Make the uppermost arch pointed only, and make the top of the window square, filling the interval with a stone shield, and you may have a perfect school of architecture, not only consistent with, but eminently conducive to every comfort of your daily life. The window in Oakham Castle is an example of such a form actually employed in the thirteenth century.


4, Russell Place, W., 
September 22nd, 1857.

Mrs. Hill to Emily.

Amelia[1] has taken the toys, and in a rather different spirit from Mr. P. She said to Miranda,

  1. Formerly nurse to Octavia and her elder sisters at Wisbeach, then married to a tailor in London.