Page:Life of Octavia Hill as told in her letters.djvu/53

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INFLUENCE OF RUSKIN AND F. D. MAURICE

September 17th, 1854.

To Miranda.
 (In the Lake Country.)

I have spent three happy evenings with Miss Rogers. I have had a very interesting conversation on religion with Charlie Bennett, Harry and Mr. Rogers. … You cannot think what pleasure your notes have been, telling us, as they do, of a life of rest and beauty. One doesn't seem to know much about that sort of thing, and yet they seem to speak of home to you, as not many things do. One thing will be that you will be able to understand Ruskin infinitely better than you would have done. I imagine that some of the descriptions, that appear to us bright images of things almost vague at times (they are so far off), will remind you of actual beauties that you have really seen, memories connected with life. Ruskin has done something to rescue many things from vagueness. He has embodied them in words which will convey these impressions they gave you, as nobody else ever has, I believe. …

I have been to Westminster Abbey with Miss Cons, have I ever spoken about her to you? It seems to me that she is capable of a very great deal. She said something the other day about Mr. Maurice and Walter Cooper that made me very angry. I told her I would never tell her anything again; however, instead of that, I told her a great deal more than I ever did before. I told her that it was he who had led me to the Church, who had shown me a life in the creeds, the services and the Bible; who had interpreted for me much that was dark and puzzling in life; how the belief in a Father, a Son and a Holy Ghost might be the most real