Elgar portrait -
from a painting belonging to Arthur Reynolds

ELGAR
an Elgar Timeline
- - -
Events of 100 Years Ago


1905

January

1
Britain's tennis team wins the Davis Cup, defeating the USA 5-0

8
The U.S. Senate reluctantly approves Roosevelt's choice of a Negro man as head of south Carolina customs service, the most senior official U.S. post ever held by a Negro.

9
Birth of the composer Michael Tippett.

17
Fifty-nine die at Bergen when a rock-fall into fjord causes 20-foot waves.

21
In Russia, 140,000 workers and peasants march on the Czar's Winter Palace in St. Petersburg.

21
Birth of French fashion designer Christian Dior.

January
1 Rosa Burley remembers: "Early in 1905 I spent a few days at Plas Gwyn, having received a charmingly worded invitation in which my Christian name had been neatly worked into the initial letter of my surname. So much had happened or was in prospect that the recent success of The Apostles seemed forgotten. A new work was on the stocks; a visit was to be paid to Yale University in America; there was the question of the lectures to be given in connection with the University Chair at Birmingham; and the delightful discovery had been made that one could reach a Catholic chapel by taking a boat across the Wye at the foot of Eign Hill."
2 "E. & Miss Burley left at 9.45 train"
3 Elgar writes to an ailing Jager: "I - we are truly distressed to receive your sad-toned letter & trust things are shaping to make your peremptory journey possible &, as far as may be, comfortable. I feel sure the firm will do all possible for you."
4 Alfred Littleton writes to Elgar, offering 25 guineas for the orchestrations of The Snow and Fly Singing Bird.
5 Elgar stays at home while Alice shops in Hereford.
6 "E. rather a cold &c. "
7 An article in the Musical Standard notes that "Also of interest is the fact that the composer is engaged on a work of quite a new order. it is a pantomime-ballet-divertissement on the subject of Rabelais's 'Gargantua et Pantagruel'."
8 Jaeger writes to Elgar: "I hope to be able to leave on Wednesday - shall be away for months. So I just scribble a line (I am fearfully busy clearing up affairs & getting ready) to say Goodbye & Auf Wiedersehen under Happier circumstances ... I worry over your muse, for I fear greatly we shall get less & less out of you. This is the danger of success artistic & social! (especially social, of course)."
9 "Mr. Talbot Hughes arrived about 3 to paint portrait of E. arranged drawing room for Studio &c - "
10 "T. Hughes began E.'s portrait, E. & he for walk in aftn. "
11 Elgar writes to Alfred Littleton: "We have been very much distressed to hear of Jaeger's illness & his enforced absence abroad for a time. It has brought to mind a proposition I intended making some time ago & if you think well of it, it might give him something more or less interesting to do at odd times & he might feel he was not quite out of things. The proposition is to let him make analyses of some of the old things which have never been adequately done. 'King Olaf' was done by Joseph Bennett in a great hurry & many themes are left out. 'Caractacus' I don't remember but I think Thompson did it more or less sketchily."
12 "E. & Mr. T. Hughes for walk in aftn. Cold wind -"
13 "T. Hughes going on with portrait."
14 Ivor Atkins visited Plas Gwyn. Wulstan Atkins writes: "Atkins was anxious to have him on the 1905 Worcester festival committee, or if possible, on the executive committee. Elgar was delighted to go on the main committee, but a little doubtful about the executive committee because of its more frequent meetings."
15 A quiet Sunday - Percy Hull comes to supper.
16 Canon Gorton writes from Morecambe: "I hear that Madame Sadler Fogg has suggested invading your quiet with her voice - Please do not be bothered with her - She is not good enough."
17 Elgar writes to Prof. Fiedler at Birmingham: "Am I appointed to the post yet? That is, am I officially recognised & may I assume the honour and responsibility in answering questions etc. connected with the University."
18 "Very cold but sunny. E. & C. for long walk over the Ham to Lugwardine A. & May into town."
19 Parry writes, offering and hon D. Mus at Oxford.
20 Elgar, accepting Parry's offer, writes: "The only honour I ever coveted, & which I ‘arranged’ with my mother (when I was fifteen) to obtain, is the Honorary Doctorate of Civil Law."
21 Elgar send a postcard to Jaeger: "Here we are in the depth of winter, ground covered with frozen snow; fog abounding & frost very severe: my balcony is alive with countless birds of all sorts. Carice & my niece feed them too well perhaps. I have no news, musical or otherwise. We all send our love & hope to write soon with accounts of anything interesting - if anything interesting ever turns up again, which I doubt."
22 Elgar starts work on the Introduction and Allegro.
23 "E. busy with letters & String Orch piece. After lunch to sale The Field."
24 Elgar writes to Alfred Littleton: "The new String Orchestra thing I will send to you as soon as possible - it will be rather a rush to get the parts out but I will send the score in 'pieces' commencing in a few days I hope."
25 Elgar writes to Ivor Atkins about the Worcester Festival: "I have heard (scribendiously) from S Southall saying I am on the Xecutive Committee; is this right and what you wish? I have said I will 'ack' thereon."
26 Another postcard to Jaeger: "Dear Moss: I'm doing that string thing in time for the Sym: orch: concert. Intro: & Allegro - no working out part but a devil of a fugue instead. G major & the sd. divvel in G minor with all sorts of japes & counterpoint. I will write soon."
27 Granville Bantock and Earnest Newman come to lunch.
28 The Fiedlers come to lunch, and Talbot Hughes arrives for more work on his portrait of Elgar.
29 Sunday at Plas Gwyn: "E. A. C. & May to Church in town. C. & May & Mr. T. Hughes for a walk. Dr. Sinclair to tea."
30 "E. & Mr. Hughes for walk in afternoon."
31 Wulstan Atkins again: "Elgar attended the next meeting of the executive committee on 31 January. At this Atkins was asked to write a sacred work for the festival, and as he knew Elgar’s skill in drawing up a libretto, he turned to him for help. It was immediately forthcoming."

February

5
In Chicago a polar bear freezes to death in the zoo after three nights of -15 F.

10
The US state of Wisconsin passes a tax on bachelors over 30.

11
Two Frenchmen land in a balloon at London's Crystal Palace after crossing the English Channel.

12
With support of Russian nobility, The Czar orders an investigation into living conditions of the working class.

21
In Manchuria, 300,000 Russian troops face the Japanese as the Battle of Mukden begins.

27
The Japanese push the Russians back in Manchuria, and cross the Sha River.

February
1 "Mr. Hughes painting"
2 "Mr. Hughes finishing for the time, E.'s portrait."
3 "E. very busy with his String Orch. piece, & happy over it."
4 "E. working very hard at his String Orch. piece - Only out a little"
5 "E. worked all day & till 11 P.M - nearly finished his work"
6 Elgar writes to Novellos: "By this post regd I send pp 1-90 incl. full score Op 47 for the Sym Orch Concert. There will be about 20 pages more which will reach you this week: please get on with the parts as soon as possible"
7 Elgar receives an Hon. D. Mus. at Oxford, where Parry is Professor of Music.
8 Parry hires the LSO for a concert in Oxford - Elgar conducts the Enigma Variations at this, his first meeting with the LSO, and is asked at rehearsal to conduct them on a tour of the North in the autumn.
9 The Elgars have been staying at Oxford with William Spooner, Warden of New College. From there they "went up to 117 Banbury Rd. to lunch with the Townshends. [RBT of the Enigma] Very nice. Home by 3.8 train. Spooners delightful & most appreciative of E."
10 "E. very busy with his Introductn & Allegro."
11 While Elgar continues work on the Introduction and Allegro, Alice goes to a concert of the Malvern Concert Club which includes Elgar's Romance and La Capricieuse. Winifred Norbury notes in her diary: "played very charmingly".
12 "E. vesy badsley headache. Went to Church, but had to leave - "
13 Elgar writes to Frank Schuster: "It was very 'nice' at Oxford and the orch. was really fine. The new 'Pomp & C.' is a devil & the string thing most brilliant with a real tune in it however. I have millions of proofs."
14 "E. heard from Prof. Sanford, inviting us to America -"
15 "Mr. Austin here by 1st train playing through parts of ‘Pomp & Circumstance' No. 3. A. played drum part of March on brass tray with E.'s Spectacle Case - muss paised."
16 Elgar writes to Jaeger: "I have finished the string thing & its all right; of course it will take you sometime to get used to it, but it will sound really wholesome - bring out much tone from the Strings. There are all sorts of wild ideas afloat as to my conducting but at present all is sub rosa."
17 Ivor Atkins visits Plas Gwyn. Wulstan Atkins writes: "Elgar had also had some thoughts about the Hymn of Faith libretto, which they discussed, and he hoped to send the first draft of this within the next few days." Atkins had asked Elgar to write a libretto for a Worcester Festival commission.
18 "E. did not go to W. Philc. Meeting but for long ride with May to Marcle &c - Strong wind -" The Worcester Philharmonic Society was wound up shortly afterwards.
19 Elgar writes to the conductor Hans Richter: "… the Symphony does not come."
20 Elgar writes to Littleton confirming terms for his forthcoming tour with the LSO: "Yes: I agreed to the terms 26 guis a day and Rly expenses (not Hotel) if the whole tour is gone through."
21 Elgar sends the first draft of his libretto to Ivor Atkins: "Here is the 'Faith' Hymn. If you don't use it be sure do not let anyone else have it. I want it myself. All good luck to you."
22 Atkins writes to Elgar: "Your libretto is simply fine. You are a Prince of the craft you really are a brilliant man: the best intellect I know - apart from the Art. I'm in a glow over it and only hope I may do partial justice to it. You see I don't expect to by any means do what should be done to it."
23 Elgar writes to Prof. Fiedler: "I am now 'through' the arduous work which has held me tight & for a few days I can look round. I should like to 'look round' the University & shd want a cicerone. Would you have any free time net week Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday?"
24 "Mr. Austin here to try String work parts. All came this morning, & revise of Pomp & Circumstance No. 3 - & German translatn of Bavarian Highlands. Very grey & cold -"
25 "Preparing for London. E. very on edge & not well."
26 Elgar writes to Atkins about the proposed programme for the Worcester Festival: "Many thanks for programme. Will find ye a ticket for Mar 8 [the first performance of the Introduction and Allegro and the 3rd Pomp and Circumstance March] an ye be there wot ye well. Programme A1."
27 Elgar writes to Troyte Griffith: "I have a 'set' of oilcolours & traps & paint (!) wildly but not too well. I wish you wd. try the greasy medium. it is a game! If you are in town on the 8th. do come & hear the new string piece - I can give you a ticket, in course. It is too bad of you not to come here. I am dying of dullness! We have had three or four decent bike rides but the weather for the past week has been vile, as you know."
28 "Aftn. Concert. A. & C. walked down. May [Grafton] played in Orch - Mr. Ettling to dinner. E. went to meet him."

March

3
In Russia the Czar agrees to create an elected assembly.

8
The Russian peasant's revolt spreads to Georgia.

11
The Parisian underground railway is opened.

14
In Great Britain the House of Commons cites the need to compete with
German naval strength.

26
In San Francisco an aircraft built by Prof. John Montgomery flies for
30 minutes on its first test run.

March
1 "E to Birmingham to look over University in advance of his first lecture."
2 "Preparing for London -"
3 The Elgars travel to London for the first performance of the Introduction and Allegro and the third Pomp and Circumstance March: "E. & A. to 22 Old Qn. St. Frank had had our rooms redecorated, fresh books, flowers &c - We all 3 to dine with Mrs. Leggatt Bruton St. Huge party. E. took in Lady C. Beresford, Claude P. took A. Music party afterwards."
4 The solo quartet from the LSO (Arthur Payne, W H Eayres, Alfred Hobday and Bertie Patterson) rehearsed the Introduction and Allegro in Schuster’s music room.
5 "E. still very porsley but got up in time for rehearsal at Queen's Hall - Beautiful rehearsal, & then to Bechstein Hall where conducted his String Serenade - Back to lunch & dinner party, E. able to be down. Huge Evening music party."
6 "E. a shade better. To rehearsal at 2 - at Queen's Hall - Splendid"
7 "Wm. Green came to sing through the 'Apostles' with E. Dr. Ashe came - E. to hear Mrs. Wood sing at 6 -"
8 First performance of Pomp and Circumstance March No. 3 and the Introduction & Allegro for Strings by the LSO conducted by Elgar, in Queen’s Hall, at an afternoon concert. The programme also includes In the South, Grania and Diarmid, Sea Pictures with Ada Crossley, Cockaigne and the Enigma Variations. Alice writes to Jaeger: "The Orch. is gorgeous & play splendidly for E. Grania was more than beautiful & poetic, the Variations delightful & the new String piece quite fascinating. Many people think it the finest thing he has written, the 4t. comes in with so beautiful an effect, the peroration toward the end is fine. The new March is thrilling - the most pacific friends were ready to fight! The critics, some of them, of course were frightened at it, but happily the audiences judge for themselves."
9 The Elgars dine with the Stuart Wortleys, and Elgar inscribes "Windflower’s" copy of the Enigma "and to my friend mentioned below - Mrs. Stuart Wortley"
10 An under the weather Elgar at Frank Schuster's.
11 "E. raser better but vesy on edge - in aftn. walked to Brixton. E. & A. to Peter Pan - lovely."
12 "E. & A. to Cathedral 10.30 - Stormy. Percy Anderson painted E. all morning." arty Suttons, Sargent. Lundi (illegible)
13 E. rather porsley. Mr. Percy Anderson to lunch & paint E. then E. & Frank motored to Ham House & to tea with Lady Charles Coombe Lodge - Quiet Evening."
14 "A. in bed all day shocking cold. E. to Athenaeum then to tailor & Sloan Museum & Colvins to tea - then he & Frank to dine with C. Phillips Mrs. J. R. Green, Clayton Miss Collier &c -"
15 "E. better. busy with Shorthand writer - having address typed" (the first Birmingham lecture). He also writes to his father, and to Carice.
16 The Elgars travel to Birmingham for the first lecture. "Frightfully hot train - lunched in it. Mr. Peyton met us. Frank & A. Kalisch with us - tea & great crowd. E. looked most beautiful in gown & hood. then to lecture - Organ played his tunes crowded hall. E. lectured most splendidly, held his audience breathless. Then to the Peytons with the Peytons & Fiedlers - Lodge & Lady to dinner - 16 in all -"
17 Granville Bantock writes to Elgar: "You have done a fine thing for our English Musical Art. Your address was a noble effort and a notable achievement. Putting aside personal gratitude - which I am not likely to forget - I must thank you for all the kind encouraging words you spoke. The future is hopeful indeed. We are all proud of you & are likely to write to support you."
18 The Elgars dine at Buckingham Palace - but Edward VII is ill and the Prince of Wales stands in for him.
19 Elgar conducts his second LSO concert, including Schumann Symphony No. 2 and the second performance of the Introduction & Allegro. "E. dreffully badly. A. stayed to nurse him up. Went from bed to Queen's Hall, A. with bag of restoratives - Conducted splendidly. Back straight to bed -"
20 While the Elgars return to Plas Gwyn, Parry notes in his diary: "Stanford in a great rage about Elgar’s inaugural address at Birmingham."
21 E. vesy porsley. Sent for Dr. Collens - E. in bed all day -"
22 "E. a shade better. Dr. Collens came"
23 "E. a shade better -"
24 "E. somewhat better. Dr. Collens came"
25 Alice writes to Canon Gorton" Very many thanks for your note & kind enquiries &c for Edward. I trust he is somewhat better, but still very far from well & it is very sad to see him so wretchedly."
26 "E. raser better. A. & C. & May to Church at 11 -"
27 Elgar writes to Littleton about a proposed American tour: "I will not go for less that Weingartner who has £2,500 (not dollars) for sixteen concerts: they can either take me or leave me."
28 Elgar write to Professor Fiedler: "I have been extremely unwell & am only just able to creep about." but Alice notes: "E. better. Hard at work all day at new rockery."
29 "Busy in garden - E. & A. at 2.30 to Hanley - lovely day & journey. Deputation met us at station then dinner. Havergal Brian came & sat with us. Then drove us to Rehearsal - Very good - Henry Wood sat with me & returned with us -" They are in Hanley for a performance of The Apostles.
30 "Glorious performance, immense audience, marvellous scene of enthusiasm - E. conducted superbly -"
31 "H. Brian to breakfast. E. looked at his Scores. Then the Chairman came & Mr. Whewall &c &c met us at station - All kindness & delight - Lovely journey home."

April

2
The Simplon railway tunnel through the Alps is officially opened.

7
In Russia the Workers' Soviet Congress demands a democratic constitution.

19
In Indiana an anti-smoking law is enforced: a youth pays $35 for possession of rolling papers.

29
Aston Villa beat League champions Newcastle United 2-0 in the F.A. Cup Final at Crystal Palace.

April
1 "E. & May & Hilda for lovely ride to Hoarwithy &c."
2 "E. & May & Hilda M. to Belmont, very windy, Dr. Sinclair to supper. Mr. Hull to fetch him."
3 Elgar writes to Professor Fiedler about the University Music Library: "I am very glad to hear of the £500, I think we should buy the Deakin library - on the report of Bantock and Newman but I have no idea what it contains."
4 "E. raser headache"
5 "Expected Mr. Kalisch prevented from coming by a cold"
6 "E. very busy with pipes for the fountain out nearly all day."
7 "E. busy with work for the fountain in the garden"
8 "E. & A. to Leeds ... Lovely journey to Crewe - Rather slow & trying afterwards ... Mr. Embleton came & took us to good rehearsal"
9 George Hookham writes to Elgar: "I enclose my cheque for a 100 guineas as a donation for your Musical Library; & ask you to accept it as a mark of my appreciation of the views so admirably set forth in your inaugural lecture here."
10 "Very cold & wet. E. & A. to York"
11 At York. E. went out for long walk ... Back to Leeds about 4 ... E to rehearsal after dinner. A. did not go. E. to Mr. Embleton’s little supper"
12 "Mr. Embleton came & took us on a train to Kirkstall Abbey ... Then to Rehearsal of 'Gerontius'. E. much upset as Mr. Coates seemed too ill to sing. Mr. Embleton had a dinner for us & Woods &c. ... Beautiful performance like a Fest. Coates sang"
13 Elgar writes to Birmingham University from "Ye Olde Boke Shoppe” in Leeds: "Kindly order from this establishment a copy of British Violin Makers 4/6 for the Library. They are keeping a copy for you."
14 "E. & A. left Leeds at 10.55 train"
15 "C. & May brought up lovely white "Peter rabbit", E. had made him a nice house - played about with Peter all the aftn. everybody!"
16 "E. & May to Belmont [Abbey]. A. & C. to town Church ... Dr. Sinclair to tea"
17 Ivor Atkins goes to Plas Gwyn, to play over his "Hymn of Faith", which he was writing to Elgar's libretto. He leaves the manuscript with Elgar.
18 "E. badsley headache."
19 Elgar writes to Atkins with further alterations to his libretto: "I have had another bad ‘turn’ or I should have promptly retd your stuff with the addition."
20 Troyte Griffith arrives by bike to stay at Plas Gwyn
21 Troyte Griffith remembers: "We bicycled from Hereford to see a 14th Century building attached to a farm house. When we came out the daughter of the house asked us to come in for tea. Rather to my surprise Elgar accepted the invitation. After tea he offered a cigarette to our hostess with the words ‘I know you smoke’. When we got outside I said to him ‘You have never seen that girl before, why did you say you knew she smoked?’ ‘That’s all you know about it,’ said Elgar. ‘She was at Miss ---‘s school at Malvern and all the girls there smoked.’"
22 "A. & C. into town. E. & Troyte for long day out"
23 "Dr. Sinclair & Max Mossel to lunch - all 4 rode afterwards"
24 "Very cold wind. E. & Troyte to Weobley &c"
25 "Troyte returned by train - E. & C. into town for Peter's sake - buying oats &c"
26 "Still wet but warmer."
27 "Wet & dull weather."
28 Elgar goes to London, staying at the Langham Hotel "To private view Royal Academy - with Kalisch Then with him to Mermaid Socy. Play, The Critic."
29 "E. in London - Went to Novello - dined at Royal Academy Banquet in Evening Delightful Evening. The Prince of Wales invited him to see the pictures with him & took him off thru’ 2 or 3 rooms & discussed the pictures & talked"
30 Elgar writes to Carice from London.

May

1
In New York, radium tested as acure for cancer

13
Mata-Hari is acclaimed in Paris

16
Birth of actor Henry Fonda

23
Shaw's 'Man and Superman' opens at the Court Theatre, London

25
The first powered flight in Europe takes place in France

26
Death of the French banker and philanthropist Alphonse de Rothschild

May
1 "E. busy in London. Long interview with Mr. Littleton in aftn re Harrison tour America &c - To Mr. Fagge's rehearsal of Gerontius in Evening."
2 Dorabella visits Plas Gwyn: "I went to Hereford for a short visit ... E.E. was in London and was expected home that evening. The Lady and I were in the study together after tea and I remember seeing a copy of the Introduction and Allegro for Strings on the table. Turning the pages over eagerly, I wanted to know all about it. 'I missed hearing this the other day, what is it like?' I asked. 'Oh! it's very wonderful, dear Dora! He wrote most of it when we were in Wales.'"
3 Elgar tells Dorabella: "That's good stuff. Nothing better for strings has ever been done"
4 Rosa Burley and May Grafton join Elgar for a bike ride.
5 Elgar travels to London.
6 "E. in London - Went to photographers - Home safes D.G."
7 "E. badsley cold - not up till late."
8 Ivor Atkins visits Plas Gwyn to go over his 'Hymn of Faith'.
9 "Very lovely & hot. Garden full of nests - E. badsley cold in bed all day -"
10 "Very warm & lovely - Cuckoos - & birds all singing."
11 " E. was going to London ... but had so bad a cold had to give it up. Dr. Collens came."
12 Nicholas Kilburn writes to Elgar: "But I care for you, nay, in its loftiest sense, love you both, so can bear perhaps even to be not understood. I hope your work goes on, & that you are yourself not allowing yourself to become what Emerson called a man of affairs - too much. Not that I, for one, fear that you are entangled in the higher mesh, from which the Gods will allow no escape!"
13 The Elgars go to Ridgehurst, in Hertfordshire, to stay with the Speyers: "E. quite badly again nearly gave up going at last minute ... Arrived at Ridgehurst 5.52 train - Found the party, Joachim, Hausmann Wirth & Halir Miss Wilde Alma Tadema & Anna A.T - Tovey. Mrs. & Miss Joachim. They played after dinner." Edward Speyer recalls that "On the many occasions when Joachim and his colleagues came to England, they always spent a week-end at Ridgehurst. Glorious memories remain of these visits, when we always had large house-parties."
14 "Very gray & cold. E. not the worse for journey thankful to say. Delightful playing in music room. Mrs. Bruce, Prof. & Mrs. Kennedy came - 18 to dinner - Mr. Speyer's birthday."
15 "Great party left in the morning. E. & A. only guests left there. Lovely warm day, out in garden &c Dined Early & went up to Joachim 4t. Concert Bechstein Hall & returned afterwards Fine playing."
16 "Came up from Ridgehurst just caught train, to Langham. E. to Opera but did not stay long. Before that went to see Lord Howe re Copyright Bill."
17 The Elgar travel to Morecambe for the Festival, staying at the Grand Hotel, but spending much time with Gortons.
18 "E. to Hall about 11 - He & A. lunched at the Rectory. Then back to Hall. Concert in Evening. Muriel Foster &c. Lovely day & views." The Lancashire Daily Post comments: "The glorious weather so far has had a somewhat detrimental effect on the attendance, some preferring the fresh air and unaccustomed sunshine to the mustiness and gloom of the Winter Gardens."
19 The famouse choral conductor and trainer, Henry Coward, writes in his diary: "Morecambe Festival performance of Elgar’s King Olaf and Parry’s Blest Pair. Self conducted. Conducted morning rehearsal with Sir Edward Elgar, Dr. McNaught, Dr. Sinclair, Canon Gorton, Mr. Howson, and others present. Singing was splendid. Sinclair told me it was a revelation to him, and said, “You have taught me much.” I was going to stop after the Wrath of Odin, as all difficulties were then over, when Sir Edward shouted out, “Will you finish it for us?” After this request we went of to the end of the last chorus. Concert a brilliant success. Sir Edward and Lady Elgar most glowing of praise of what they had heard. Called for, and got fine reception by audience and performers."
20 Alice's and Coward's diaries tell contrasting takes: "E. to Hall Early A. later & lunched at Rectory Wonderful singing. Judges very late, hurried dinner & back to Hall. Great excitement - Hanley won Challenge shield - E. made beautiful speech - A. gave away prizes. Supper with party afterwards." "Stayed in Morecambe. Had a day off. Felt quite nice to have a free day after six months’ hard continuous work. Took part in closing function with all the adjudicators, Gorton, etc."
21 "A. badsley cold in bed. E. to church For a walk with Canon Gorton called on Mr. Howson. E. & Mr. Coates & Dr. Sinclair to supper at Rectory."
22 Back at Plas Gwyn, Elgar writes to Professor Fielder about books for Birmingham University: "I am returning the Index slip of Liepmannsohn’s to the Librarian: enclosed I send to you the only books I have selected. I waited a long time in hope of receiving the catalogue of the Deakin Library but it has not reached me. We must have the 'Bach Socy Edition' of J.S.B. of course. But I hope to come over one day soon to talk things over with you. Bach & Beethoven (complete edn.) are both in this catalogue - but they wd require binding. & of this question & various subscriptions to editions now publishing (e.g. Purcell socy) we must decide."
23 Elgar writes to Troyte Griffith: "I see that the Hanley Cauldron Choral Society have been giving (most of) a concert in Manchester. They were prizewinners at Morecombe & wd. be a great catch for the Concert Club if you could get them. I can’t write & you must not mention my name except as Chairman as I have been judge & it wd. look like putting ‘em above the other societies. You might write and ask what they wd. take to come & give 1½ hours of their best part songs: it wd. be a revelation to most & wonderfully enjoyable. They did Cornelius, Brahms & the difficult things chosen by Morecambe including those of the subscriber to this epistle. I am trying to find a garden-seat."
24 Canon Gorton writes to Elgar from Morecambe: "First business. I enclose cheque for 35 guineas for fee & travelling ­ and believe me we are only afraid we are taking advantage of your kindness in not sending it for a more satisfactory figure ... It is not needful for me to add that we cannot thank you enough for all you have done for us - and you looked so splendidly well when I left you that I feel less scrupulous in making this inroad on your time."
25 "Madeline Martin rode over. E. met her & rode back with her."
26 "E. raser worried. After lunch rode part of way with M. Martin to Ludlow."
27 "A. let come down stairs. 9pin [Troyte Griffith] came - E. & May rode & met him."
28 "A. not out ... E. May met 9pin & rode round with him. E. & 9pin for another ride in Evening."
29 Preparing for their forthcoming visit to the USA, Alice writes to Jaeger: "We are very busy preparing for the departure, all being well, next week - & I trust it will do E. an immense amount of good. He is looking much better I am thankful to say. We are, D.V. to be away between 5 & 6 weeks, & shall hope to see you again on our return very much restored, & strong. We are to go in the 'Deutschland' from Dover on the 9th. & shall hope to write & tell you about the new country & experiences & our kindest of hosts above all - We had a nice time at Morecambe, the Fest. was more wonderful than ever, & the singing more truly unimaginably beautiful. It is of no use trying to describe it, it must be heard. It wd. have done you good to have heard 'King Olaf' with such a chorus. Plas Gwyn is looking very sweet & nice, flowering shrubs all out & all so green & today sunny - The garden is full of young birds who give E. much anxiety, & he tries to assist the parents in saving them from dangers. Carice has been looking so well & very much grown, She is very devoted to the garden here, & some dear bunny rabbits & doves -"
30 "Mr. Ramsden came about 2 - Sat out in garden &c - 9pin left 9 or 10 o'clock rode to station -"
31 "E. drefful badsley headache more or less prostrate all day -"

June

10
Japan and Russia agree to peace talks; proclaimed a diplomatic triumph for President Roosevelt.

13
The Greek premier Delyannis is assassinated outside Parliament in Athens.

16
French officers on leave are ordered to return to barracks as situation with Germany worsens.

18
In St. Petersburg anti-government riots occur in several regions.

21
Birth of the French writer Jean-Paul Sartre.

28
The red flag of revolution is hoisted over the Potemkin at Odessa, the Russians' most powerful battleship in the Black Sea.

June
1 "Lovely day - E. raser better - Mr. Ramsden left at 10-45."
2 Elgar presents Ivor Atkins with a signed full score of Pomp and Circumstance March No. 3.
3 "E. to Meeting at 2. For a ride with May afterwards -"
4 "E. & May to Belmont. A. & C. to Church in town. Most perfect day. Dr. Sinclair & Mr. Wilson to tea - very pleasant visit. Lovely Evening."
5 Now the Elgars start getting ready for their visit to the States where Elgar is to receive a Doctorate from Yale: "Very busy packing &c. Then Mr. Harrison & Mr. Sharpe to see E. about conducting Tour -"
6 "Wet gray day - E. to Worcester 2.25 - Returned terribly depressed - A. in the morning drove plate chest to Lloyd's Bank -"
7 Elgar goes ahead to London, staying with Frank Schuster, leaving Alice to finish preparations.
8 "A. by corridor [train] C. & May to see her off. Both in tears dear things. E. & Frank met A. & drove to Victoria, had tea there & Frank saw us off - nearly tearfully. Arrived Dover in pouring rain, had to wait & went in Omnibus before it started to Hotel - irritating E. walked about."
9 Lord Warden Hotel started us off at 9.30 - Had to wait on pier in rain & luggage in it too till about 11.30 then in a wretched tender to the Deutschland - on board at last. Arranged cabin. After Cherbourg they let us have a Cabin de luxe. Changed all our things. E. rather badsley. headache &c - Dreadful vibration & noise. E. very mis." But Elgar still find time to send a postcard to Carice: "At sea. All well. much love Faser" to which Alice adds: "Sea smooth, huge ship, hardly any motion. Thursday D.V. in New York. Thinking of you both & our love. Should arrive D.V. on Thursday."
10 ". still badsley. A. down to breakfast alone. Invited to Captn’s table. E. better by dinner time pleasant people at table Dr. Ayre, Commodore Tod, Mr F. Musey, Dixons - deplorable looking Italian Marchese & Chicago wife."
11 ". better, pleasant day, thought of Cöln & Die Apostel this day year -"
12 "Saw more of acquaintance enjoyed the Sea - Saw Mr. Courtland Palmer, Claude’s friend Mr. Kent Sanders & soon Mrs. Worthington & Mr. Johnson -" Julia Worthington was to become a close friend of the Elgars. Yeats decribed her as "... a sort of Duchess"
13 Pleasant day.
14 "Nice day at Sea. Watched sea & sky all day. E. flittering about with no hat on - A curious decorated dinner & Concert in Evening."
15 "Fresh lovely morning. Arr. N. York about 3.30. Mr. Sanford met us - & after some delay got through Custom House &c - & he took us to the Manhattan Hotel, nice little suite of rooms high up. Very hot. Went for drive round Park - then dined at Lafayette Restaurant - Much impressed with N. York - & Harbour & magnificent river - Sorry to leave Ship & friends."
16 Alice writes to Mrs Jaeger: "We arrived here about 12 today & think you & Mr Jaeger will like to hear we have arrived all well. The voyage was most delightful. E. was rather ill & miserable for the first day but after that enjoyed it & looked so much the better for it. Our kindest of hosts met us at N. York where we stayed the night Saturday & came on this morning. It is a charming house & there are great Social & Yale functions going on this next week. The harbour of N. York & river scenery are magnificent."
17 "Very hot & steamy. In afternoon E. & A. to East Rock in Victoria. Very nice drive."
18 "E. & A. to Church at 9 - very near. Walked. After breakfast E. vesy porsley & in bed all day - Dr. Sanford to see him."
19 "E. vesy porsley. Dr. Sanford came to see him - Just well enough to come down to dinner - large party, beautiful gold plate &c. Returned when dinner was over Change in weather - suddenly cooler."
20 "E. raser better. cooler After dinner Mr. Sanford took A. a drive round by the Sea. fireflies very pretty."
21 Meanwhile, negotiations were going on with Novello to bring Elgar to the USA to conduct in 1906. Mr van der Stucken writes to August Littleton: "After many delays and discussions, I received a cablegram from Cincinnati, authorising me to engage Sir Elgar’s services for the sum of one thousand pounds. I never believed that it would come to this, for never has such a price been paid for a composer before this."
22 And Elgar's old friend Doctor Charles Buck writes from Settle: "It seems a very long time since I heard from you and don’t know whose fault it is so I will take it all & drop a screed in the hopes that I may hear what you are doing & how wags the world with you & yours - I was sorry I could not get to Morecambe but as I am without an assistant I find it difficult to get away even for half a day"
23 Back in the USA: "Very hot - Mr. Palmer came with E.'s gorgeous robe after breakfast. Then had lovely Motor drive to Cheshire. Sweet place. After lunch for another drive, Wallingford &c. Dinner party in Eveng. Judge & Mrs. Townshend &c - very pleasant, E. well & brilliant."
24 Canon Gorton writes from Morecambe about the conductor, and manager of the Morecambe Festival, George Howson: "The blow which for 2 years I have dreaded has fallen and my dear friend Howson has been taken - When I was sitting by Lady Elgar at the Festival and saw him sitting below to hear his choir sing (for the last time) it came upon me that he was a dying man - He never left his bed since you and I were with him and after a discipline of pain which made us welcome the end he passed away on Thursday morning - His body was taken to St. Laurence's church where we held the Eucharist this morning at 7."
25 The diarry continues to chart their visit: "At Sea Acre. New London - Lovely day - Sat in Piazza - A. for drive (Motor) to Gale Ferry with Mr. Sanford & Mrs. Sheffield. E. strolled to sea shore & was much amused."
26 "Left New London about 10.30 Lovely day, hot - Had a splendid drive the bad piece of road crossed safely, D.G. Road better. Dined at the Townshends Met Mr. Secretary Taff &c after dinner strolled out to Memorial Hall & heard part of Students' Concert, mandolines & singing. Lovely night."
27 "E. drefful headache. on the bed all day. Tried everythg. but cd. not go to College dinner in Evening."
28 The day of the Yale Doctorate. Arthur Hadley, President of Yale, says: "A composer of musical creations of the highest merit honoured for his genius and his achievements as a master of the oratorio, wherever excellence in music is appreciated; gifted and distinguished for leadership in an art that gives noble expression to that which is uplifting and inspiring in human feeling and that voices the profoundest spirited emotions and the deepest longings of the heart; marked in his home-land by ample scholastic recognition and by the appreciation of his sovereign; and commanding the homage of the musicians of Germany, of France and of America, he is heartily welcomed among us. We felicitate ourselves on his presence with us at the anniversary of this venerable university, and see in it fresh evidence of the union in sympathy and mutual recognition that is knitting together by bonds of ever-increasing closeness the two great English-speaking nations. We would ask that Yale do her part to express the admiration of America for his talents and service by conferring upon Sir Edward Elgar the degree of Doctor of Music, already his by gift of the English Universities, and thus do herself the honour of enrolling him among her graduates."
29 Elgar writes to Littleton: "This climate is too much for me & I have been knocked over twice by the heat & had the doctor. Sanford is more than kind & we have been to the Sea which was refreshing. The degree business went off well & was an imposing sight. I really have no brains left. & have only felt well one day: it's very sad. Mr Maxwell of Cincinnati is coming to see me on Friday & we may settle something - my feelings are dead against coming here again but my pocket gapes aloud."
30 "E. still porsley. Very hot. Mr. Maxwell came over from Cincinnati & arranged with E. that he wd. go & conduct at the Festival in 1906. D.V." The fee agreed in the end was £1,500.

July

5
The world record for one mile in a steam-powered car is cut to 48.8 secs in New York.

10
The British Government's proposed redistribution of parliamentary seats would mean 22 fewer MPs for Ireland.

11
The discovery of documents in Milan reveal the identity of the original Othello.

19
In New York a heatwave has killed 96 so far.

27
In Liverpool 23 die in the crash of an electric train.

July
1 "Very hot. For Motor drive after tea to Milford - along sea shore - Had to wait while Arthur repaired motor in road pretty flowery spot in shade -"
2 "All lunched at the Townshends very pleasant - E. not vesy well. A. to Church at 9. Fearfully stuffy & hot. Prof. Sanford. E. & A. to Boston in afternoon. State room, electric fans &c Hotel Touraine - Dinner late after arriving"
3 Elgar writes to Professor Fiedler: "I ran over to Birmingham on my way here: I am sorry I missed you. We return soon - I have been to Yale & have been going through the music department there & may have found some useful ideas."
4 "Frightful noises - Too hot to go out. Arrived N. Haven to lunch -"
5 "Very hot - not out."
6 Canon Gorton writes to Elgar about the 1906 Morecambe Festival: "We are of course most anxious to know what you can do for us ­- whether we can have Makers of Music - This with the whole of Bavarian Highlands, might form nucleus of our concert on Friday - the London Symphony Orchestra 70 strong would cost us £220. I do not know whether we dare risk this We might have fine programme -"
7 "Suffocating heat Prof. S. E. & A. drove (hired carriage) to West Rock after tea. Very lovely."
8 Elgar writes to Augustus Littleton: "This climate has been awful & I have been really well only about two clear days - don’t tell anyone this! but it has been quite seriously trying & the doctor continually hovering about me: the intense humidity is intolerable, the heat actually not very great but we sit in pyjamas bathed in perspiration from morning till night."
9 H. Reece writes to Elgar asking him to write a preface to a volume of articles contributed to the Manchester Guardian by the critic Arthur Johnstone, who had recently died. Elgar notes on the letter: "Mem: I sketched the preface & withdrew it when I saw that among the collected criticisms were some words, or passages ‘against’ Parry. I cd. not give my name to them."
10 Elgar sends Frank Schuster a post-card: "Starting tomorrow -"
11 "Left Manhattan Hotel at 8.30. Long time waiting on pier in a queue to get on to ferry - Reached Ship at last. Prof. Sanford changed our cabin. Ship started fairly punctually at 11 am - On way home. D.G."
12 "Lovely calm sunny warm day - Sea lovely, watched flying fish from Boat deck where Mr. & Mrs. Sheffield had their cabin. Mr. Irving there & 2 more men - Saw porpoises but not jumping."
13 "Lovely day. rather windier -"
14 Ashworth P. Burke, of Burke's Peerage, writes to Elgar: "May I ask you to be good enough to fill in the enclosed form, so that a correct account of yourself and your services may be given in the new editions of “The Peerage and Baronetage”? An early return of the enclosed will much oblige."
15 "Lovely day. Saw porpoises - dear things. In afternoon saw the American Paul Jones Squadron signalled to our ship."
16 "Lovely day - began packing -"
17 "Up early - finished packing. Sauntered about with Prof. Sanford & Sheffields till time to leave ship. Very sorry to leave them & it - Lovely day Got into. tender & up beautiful harbour Customs &c Started in train about 11 - Lovely journey all the way - Through Severn tunnel - Home at 4.30. Found C. & May & all well D.G. for all -"
18 Elgar writes to Jaeger: "One line to say we arrived safely yesterday & are both well: this is to bring you all our love & good wishes: I was laid up with the heat too much to be pleasant but our kindest of hosts made everything lovely"
19 "Lovely day. E. to Malvern in A.M. Lunched at the Mount. Home at 5.30 - much more satisfied in mind -"
20 Alice writes to Dorabella: "We had a most interesting time, the voyage was lovely, I feel quite ready to start again! I have some Yale notices for you. You must see H.E.'s gorgeous robes!" (Dorabella referred to Elgar as "His Excellency".)
21 Wulstan Atkins notes: "Atkins went over to Plas Gwyn, and Elgar helped him with the orchestration of the Hymn of Faith, which was now otherwise complete."
22 "E. for a little ride."
23 Elgar writes again to Jaeger: "Many thanks for your letter: so glad to hear all about you. I have no moment to spare to say anything coherent. There is a trunk full of letters accumulated during the six weeks we were away."
24 Working on the "trunk full"!
25 "E. with Dr. Sinclair to Ludlow. 9.20 train - rode down to station. lovely day. Enjoyed his souse, Rode from Leominster to Ludlow seeing Richard's Castle &c."
26 Sidney Colvin writes to Elgar: "We were both of us delighted and touched by your letter. I always think it is worth being a little - or even a good deal - ill, for the sake of the two great comforters, Walter Scott and R.L.S. whom one turns to at such times. That R.L.S. should have turned your thoughts from the sickbed to us and to the monument is another debt added to the pile, always growing, which we owe to his memory. The newspaper accounts of the heat in New York both before & after you wrote were frightening. How glad you must have been to escape on board ship, & find yourself on a reasonably temperate and occasionally drizzly island."
27 "E. & C. & May to Woolhope Field Club Meeting left at 10 for Ross. Dragon - Rather showery day - Home at 7.25. Enjoyed the Forest."
28 "Ivor Atkins to be helped with his Orchn. E. worked for him all day. After dinner or just before we finished two young men from Yale arrived Mr. Tyler & Mr. (blank) & spent evening."
29 "E. & A. in Connolly motor to Eardisley & Madley ... E. & A. dined at Dr. Sinclair’s, Dr. Ash there."
30 "To Bullingham at 10.30. sweet peaceful place - Dr. Ash to tea & Mr. Hull."
31 "E. & May rode in P.M. to Eardisland & Weobley. A. took C. to stay at the Benhams, called on Mrs. Pelley & Berkeleys, home at about 8."

August

2
The birth of Karl Amadeus Hartmann, German composer.

16
Kaiser Wilhelm II and King Edward VII meet in Bad Ischl, Germany.

20
Earl of Minto replaces George Curzon as Viceroy of India.

24
French bicyclist Lucien Petit-Breton breaks a world record,
covering 25 miles in one hour.

30
Scientists assemble in North Africa to watch an eclipse of the sun.

August
1 Ivor Atkins visits Plas Gwyn for help with the orchestration of his 'Hymn of Faith'. He is roped in to other activitie: "He & E. worked at filling cask, mending gate post &c -"
2 Wulstan Atkins writes: "The orchestration of the Hymn of Faith was completed. After tea Atkins rode back to Worcester, with Elgar and May Grafton riding part of the way with him. The habit of riding out to meet your guest and of going part of the way back with him when he left was a ritual which had originated with Sinclair some years before E took up cycling."
3 Elgar writes to Carice: "My dearest chuck: The animals are all well & not likely to remain so I fear, as everyone who goes by their house gives them something: I find the following extras were offered & devoured - May. 4 Chicory leaves each: Mother. 2 large Carrots: Father: pea-pods (full) - this happened in the evening: both Peter & Mopsy are lively & well after the treatment."
4 "very wet & violent storms -"
5 Troyte Griffith arrives for a visit: "E. to Malvern - 9pin came in P.M."
6 Oliver Elton writes to Elgar: "I am delighted to hear through Mr Reece that you are to help our book with a note on the critic Arthur Johnstone who had died recently. We are just correcting the proofs of the reprints, and have finished our short memoir which precedes them. We are pressing the whole through quickly in order to be ready for the opening of the Manchester musical year in early autumn."
7 William Elgar writes: "Dear Ted, Many thanks for Box received on Saturday morning. They are nice little smokes - I suppose you have had the same sort of weather as we have High wind blowing every thing down and plenty of rain - the moon changes this evening - my almanack says fine weather next week - I am not well suppose getting old - and always thinking about somebody that is gone hope I shall get more straight soon -"
8 "9pin left after tea. E. vesy porsley &c A. vesy mis about him. E. rode some way with the 9pin."
9 "E. raser better. Kitty & Fred Parker to tea. Nice talk of old days."
10 Elgar's childhood friend Hubert Leicester comes to tea and talks about the granting to Elgar of the Freedom of the City of Worcester.
11 Elgar writes to Tertius Noble, organist of Norwich Cathedral: "Now about coming to you. I fear this is impossible next season, I have too much to do before Xmas in this country & I go again to America next year for a little time; dates at present unfixed: I am very sorry but must hope for the future."
12 "Mr. Littleton & Mr. Pierson came - E. out riding. E. & A. to see them after dinner, drove down - back over Castle Green in moonlight"
13 E. to Belmont. A. & C. to town Mr. & Mrs. A. Littleton Mr. & Mrs. Pierson to tea late.
14 E. A. & C. by 12.33 train to Pandy. Walked on Black Mountain - back at 7.30 - stray cab. Lovely day - heather, moths lovely butterflies - E. vesy tired.
15 Dr. Grindrod came about 9.30 - E. very tired. A. & C. out at 9 - not after. E. & Dr. Grindrod rode out quietly Dr. G. home by last train.
16 Elgar writes to Alice Stuart-Wortley: "It was very sad that you cannot come to Worcester but you must not think that we are peevish over it: true it is that I was awfully angry when I found that fate had altered your plans - angry with fate I mean - & I went to the Sundial - this is the lowest & most abject thing I can do, because the Sundial is so quiet & peaceful."
17 "Lovely day - E. wrote beautiful melodic passage for Empedocles, He rode in P.M. to Callow -"
18 "E. for walk with C. by brick fields to look for plants."
19 "E. & C. to Ashperton walked to & from station - Walked along old Canal, very gloomy & strange -"
20 Elgar writes to Littleton: "This is only to say that I have recd a letter from Gorlitz about some American scheme wh. sounds colossal: there seems to be a chance of my seeing him on his tour so I thought it best to fit in with this plan: I have always turned things of the sort over to you & if this should get so far as to require terms to be arranged, I will do so again. but at present the thing is vague: so we will talk it over & if you are in the mind to be bothered I will refer G. to you."
21 "E. writing part Song with Coventry Patmore's words." (Evening Scene)
22 E. to Chester at 11.36 to meet Görlitz about an American scheme. Staying the night."
23 Jaeger writes to Elgar: "I saw my Dr (Schofield) last night; He says I have done splendidly at Davos, but that the left lung is not yet quite right, & I ought to return to D. next November. Dr Buol at Davos told me the same thing, but the Professor Demieville (Lung Specialist) at Lausanne said I was quite fit to return to England to work. Needless to say I am fearfully depressed over Dr S's (a very capable & honest friend) finding & yet I know that to get ever quite well & safe from that terrible disease, that 'damned spot' (between the 3rd-4th Rib) must be healed up. I haven't dared to tell anybody here yet."
24 ... and Elgar replies: "Glad to hear from you: keep up your spirits, you old dear, & all will be well. Thanks for telling me about yourself. Look here: Can't you come to Worcester for a day or two - they are going to give me the 'freedom of the city' on Wedy - then there's the String piece & Apostles &c. &c. We can find you a bed. & the fare won't cost you anything I'll see. You will receive - the firm will - a new part-song - my best bit of landscape so far in that line. You won't make anything of it on the PF. - Morecambe is the place to hear it."
25 Elgar writes to Canon Gorton: "I have written - or rather completed a part song in memory of our friend Howson."
26 "E. thinking of theme -"
27 "E. & A. & C. & May to Belmont - Walked back -"
28 "Expecting Prof - next day."
29 "Prof. Sanford arrived from Oxford - Dick Whittier & Dr. Arnold with him. They stayed at Dragon -" (the Green Dragon Hotel)
30 "Nice day - both young men to lunch then they returned to London -"
31 "Long Motor drive for Gaffer (Sanford)to see Country. E. & A. & he." Wulstan Atkins writes: "Sanford hired a car and brought the Elgars over to Worcester for the full chorus rehearsal in the cathedral."

September

8
An earthquake in Italy kills thousands and destroys 25 villages.

12
A new Anglo-Japanese treaty provides for Japan to help safeguard India.

14
Plans made to connect the Far East and the U.S.A. by submarine telegraph lines.

18
Birth of Swedish actress Greta Garbo.

27
Lord Londonderry says it is a parental duty to feed children and that school meals are unnecessary.

September
1 "Gaffer & A & May & C. motored to Kynastone Aramstone &c - then lunch & then E. took him to Hampton Ct. had tea there & so home -"
2 Professor Sanford left Plas Gwyn.
3 "E. vesy porsley -"
4 "E. better. finished his proofs of new part Song &c."
5 The Minutes of Worcester City Council record: "It was moved by the Mayor, seconded by the High Sheriff, and resolved unanimously:- That pursuant to the Honorary Freedom of Boroughs Act, 1885, the Honorary Freedom of the City of Worcester, be conferred upon Sir Edward William Elgar, Musc. Doc., LL.D/; in recognition of the eminent position which he, a Citizen of the Faithful City, has attained in the Musical World; and that he be admitted as an Honorary Freeman accordingly."
6 Elgar is in London for Three Choirs Festival rehearsals. Rosa Burley remembers: "... Jaeger was present. He was back from Switzerland and a cure which had all too obviously failed. It was on this occasion that he begged me to try and separate Edward from some of his newer friends."
7 Rosa Burley continues: "Professor Sanford gave a luncheon in Edward's honour at Pagani's. The Professor was a witty and delightful host who knew how to keep a large number of people entertained without apparent effort and I soon understood why the American visit had been so happy. The party stands out in my mind for one of those surprising remarks with which Edward liked to administer shock-therapy to his friends. Introducing me to Professor Sanford, he said, 'Without her I could not have written Gerontius'. Dr Sanford, who was too well-bred to show surprise, bowed and said he could believe it. But I, knowing Edward, guessed that something more would follow. 'You see,' Edward added, 'she took Carice off our hands while I was writing it.'"
8 Alice writes to Jaeger: "So many thanks for your sweet letter, I am so glad you can come (to stay during the Festival), it is good of Mrs. Jaeger to spare you -"
9 The composer Havergal Brian was also at the Festival: "I never forget it for in 1st week of Sept 1905, Elgar invited me to Worcester for the Festival to be his guest. He introduced me to all his friends - found me rooms, and when I reached them I found tickets for all performances, including an invitation to lunch and the banquet when he was made Freeman of the City of Worcester."
10 The Elgars with Hubert Leicester (now Mayor of Worcester) and the Corporation go to a service in St. George’s Catholic Church in Worcester, where Elgar and his father had been organist, and Hubert Leicester choir-master.
11 Alice's diary: "Settling house &c - & to Rehearsal &c - F. (Frank Schuster) took M. Foster for little drive - At dinner F. told us of his invitation for the Cruise - After dinner to Rehearsal to hear E’s String piece. Mrs. Gandy & Canon Gorton arrived & Mr. Jaeger -" 'The Cruise' was to be a Mediterranean cruise with the Royal Navy at the invitation of Admiral Charles Beresford.
12 Billy Reed: "The Worcester Festival began the next day and I saw the procession making its way from the Guildhall to the Cathedral with the Mayor, the High Sheriff and all the aldermen in their civic robes and Elgar walking solemnly in their midst, clothed in a strange gown which puzzled most of the onlookers. Upon inquiry this turned out to be the Yale University gown and hood which Elgar hastened to wear on the very first occasion that a Doctor of Music’s robes were needed at any of his public engagements. Remaining in the memory is another thing in connection with this procession and civic honour, and that is that Elgar turned as he passed a certain house in the High Street on his way to the cathedral and saluted an old gentleman whose face could just be seen looking out of an upper window. It was his father, who was watching the honour being paid to his son by the city of his birth. Being very old and growing feeble, he was unable to leave his room; but what must his feelings have been on looking out of that window and seeing before his very eyes the fulfilment of his wildest dreams!" Gerontius followed the ceremony, conducted by Atkins, and then the Mayor’s luncheon for Elgar. Atkins "Hymn of Faith" for which Elgar had written the libretto, was in the afternoon.
13 Elgar conducted the Introduction & Allegro at the evening concert. Canon Gorton wrote to his wife: "Elgar was full of reminiscences of the place where he spent his boyhood. The house we are now in, he used to visit as a small boy and here improvise to two old ladies. I am up before breakfast in glorious sunshine, and must before a full day write a line. This house is a school house in the close just opposite the Cathedral. Worcester is a fine old city. The Cathedral I have never seen before; it looks as if it had just been built."
14 On his father's birthday, Elgar conducted Apostles in the morning. The composer Thomas Dunhill, one of whose pieces was being performed at the festival, wrote in his diary: "He was most adorable to me. His praise of my song pleased me more than I could express. He has asked me again tomorrow." He later remembered: "He was staying in some school-house which he had taken for the period of the festival. A long table occupied the whole length of the large dining-hall. Elgar sat at the head of this, and a place was reserved for me immediately on his right. "Remember," he said with emphasis, "this is your place every morning you are here." To a young musician, only just free from the shackles of student life, this was a thrilling privilege for which I was quite unprepared, for Elgar was then at the summit of his career and was entertaining a large house-party of close friends and ardent admirers."
15 Indecision about the Mediterranean cruise! "Frank started about 7.30. I saw him & sd. E. sd. he cd. not go. After E had showerbath. he sd. he should! Dear nice time over breakfast. Then E to Cathedral. After settling house A. went out & got things for E & a box & suit case had his initials painted on box & packed. May fetched things from Herefd. E. went 2.45 train A. in cab with him - E. much touched by all the week & success of works & love shown him. Suddenly all the house party appeared to see him off. E. & F started at 9 - Mrs. Gandy left after tea Canon Gorton at 10 P.M." Elgar kept a journal of his trip: "Left Worcester 2.45. Arrd. Paddn. - drove to Old Queen St. Bought cigarettes (Grécque), gum for labels, sent telegram to Alice. Dined at Pall Mall restaurant with Frank then to Charing Cross. P. & O. Indian Mail Boat. Hopeless confusion: left at 9. good crossing to Calais - then boarded the P & O Mail. I had a berth with a young Greek. bouillon & then to bed: did not attempt to undress. Slept fitfully."
16 Canon Gorton writes again to Mrs Gorton: "Elgar started yesterday afternoon with Schuster to join the Fleet - he is going on flagship for Constantinople - & isles of Greece - Lady Elgar went with him to the station - I suggested that we should follow Mrs. Worthington Mrs. Gandy, Carice & Miss Grafton their niece ­ We just raced down the platform in time to see him & had great fun ­ I met coming back Muriel Foster, and had a long walk & talk with her - about Elgar & his future -"
17 "Rose at 7.30. Tea. Glorious day. Found we were beyond Bologna. Travelled all day through varied country - olives; desert appallingly gloomy - stopped at many stations apparently without cause: arrd. at Brindisi at 8 instead of 6. Wild scramble for luggage - at last drove to the ship: found that no Austrian Lloyd ship sailed - so had to go in a small Italian steamer (Scilla, Palermo). Very small cabins. Started about midnight. Slept fairly"
18 "Woke about eight arrived at Corfu about 9. Lovely looking fortification - like in Böcklin picture, square stone buildings on hills with cypresses - went ashore in small boats - very wobbly - landed & drove to hotel S. Georges. Bath & dejeuner - too hot to walk about - remained ashore until 3.30. Sea rough & small boats more wobbly than before - sailed about five. Glorious evening - wonderful sea, sky & mountains. Then gorgeous sunset. Dined (14) on deck - a wonderful experience - to bed at 10."
19 Lady Maud Warrender was also on the trip: "Unfortunately the weather broke on our way to Patras. H.M.S. Surprise had a most uncomfortable way of behaving in a rough sea, quite unlike any other craft I have ever been in, a sort of corkscrew motion which, good sailor though I am, completely defeated me. Lady Charlie (Beresford) was the only one who did not succumb. She even managed to sit on a surging music stool and play "The Ride of the Valkyries," and the "Fire Music" at the height of the storm, when everyone else was prone, and utterly miserable. At Patras, where we were to leave the yacht, there was a big sea running in the harbour. Unless we caught the little steamer to Fiume which only tan once a week, it meant staying in a very bad hotel in a very dull place. Mrs. Craigie and myself hated the idea of this, so we made up our minds to make a dash in a small boat for the steamer, leaving "Frankie Schu" and Edward Elgar quivering on the quay, not daring to face the risk of getting alongside in a horrible sea. We just made it, but we went through a hideously uncomfortable and hot time in this fig cargo boat before reaching Fiume. There were so many figs on board that the sides of our cabins were a moving mass of white maggots, racing each other up the walls. That procession has made me doubtful about Smyrna figs ever since."
20 Wednesday, arose about 9. much better owing to Dr. Fraser's doses. Breakfast alone. Then on deck: glorious view Athens - Acropolis &c &c & the fleet (17) all around us. Admiral to lunch. Then ashore with party - Lady C. Frank & I drove to Acropolis - walked round (saw kitten) - then drove thro Athens tea at Hotel then to hotel on the shore. Massed bands of the fleet playing in Casino. Admiral's party sat aloft on Hotel balcony - huge crowd below - Minister there & Greek military & Naval representatives. The Minister (Sir Francis Elliott) came on board the Surprise to dinner, to bed at eleven."
21 Maud Warrender again: "Lady Charlie and Mrs. Craigie had a somewhat flamboyant taste in clothes and floating veils. Their appearance on the quay was such an astonishment to the Greeks that they would be surrounded by a mob, and Frankie Schuster, Bogie Harris and I found it less disconcerting to land at another time."
22 "Fleet began to prepare to move about 6 - Sailed off one by one about 7. Seemed quite lonely. Last despatch for shore from Surprise announced about 9. At eleven anchor raised & we started, taking a long, long look, for the last time, at Athens & the Parthenon. Then began a lovely voyage: round Cape Colonna - thro Doro Channel to Lemnos, during the day we passed the fleet in singles and twos - much firing at targets &c. The most gorgeous sunset we have yet seen. Our party seemed small at dinner - 6 including Capt Bruen. To bed at eleven. Discovered to our horror that the port holes are always closed during the voyage. Frank & I cd. not face being below, so I lay in the saloon, did not sleep much on acct of noise. Frank had a slung bed on the poop."
23 Arrived off Lemnos about six o'c & went on deck: entered a landlocked bay. Maine already arrived, & a yacht at anchor. As soon as we had anchored portholes opened & to bed for an hour. Expect a telegram here. Telegram arrived. Deo gratias came from Kistro, eight miles on a donkey. Fleet arrived, very grand sight, solemn procession & grand noise anchoring. Admiral to lunch. in afternoon Frank & I ashore. All Turks - poor dried up little village, quite eastern: dogs about. We walked thro the village & out to open country. Heard a pretty shepherd boy playing on a pipe quite beautiful - gorgeous sunset back to ship with the Warrenders & changed into Surprise boat, which we met, en route. Admiral to dinner, very sleepy after the all night manoeuvres without lights Decisive news that the fleet nor Lady Charlie may not go near Constantinople on acct of tension. Frank decided that I must go - so to bed."
24 Back in England, Alice's diary takes up the story: "A. C. & May to Church at 11 - A busy with letters later - Had dear letter in the morning or was it Saturday? from Corfu - good news - Deo Gratias."
25 Alice had been invited to stay with the Speyers at the country home in Hertfordshire: "left home by 8 o'clock train. May flew down to station with precious letter with good news of E just before train started. On to S-Pancras & at Ridgehurst about 6.15 - So strange without E. Kind welcome." While in the train she wrote to Carice: "A line darling to tell zu that Faser was going by train from Patras to Athens sorry to leave nice Italn. ship. Everyone knew they were ‘going to join the Fleet’ so Faser was made to steer leaving the Ship. He did & woke things up, nothing makes him feel sea sick now - The most happy letter thank God - written Thursday a.m. when he had sent the telegram."
26 "No headache, up at 8.30 glorious weather: providence is kinder to Moslems than to Xtians! To S. Sofia - very large & grand but uninspiring & ugly. Women were admitted to a railed off portion today, it being some special feast. At the high Altar, or where it wd. be in a church, saw one woman in pure white, one in purple & a child in pink, beautiful effect of colour. The lavatories in the church: most striking. Then to the bazaar: where we had lunch, which was wretched - again through bazaar & then to drive round the old walls. Lady M. & Frank struck after a couple of miles, but Mrs. Craigie & I went on & Sir G. & Mr. Harris followed, wonderful gigantic. We ascended a tower & saw the so called prisons & the well, road outside the walls horribly bad. Cemeteries Greek, Armenian, & Turkish - entered Stamboul by one of the gates & drove thro' the Turkish quarter: all out in 100000 being a fest, minarets illuminated - many priests out fearing a row, & secret police, so the (Embassy) dragoman said. Dinner altogether & to bed early."
27 "In the night the most fearful noise by the dogs - a sound I never dreamt possible - like 40,000 dogs - they were just under the window - this terrible noise came on about 1.30. Rose about 8.30. At 10 drove to the Seraglio - special permit, received by an Attaché (?) somebody important anyway - the 'Minister of the Treasury’ was present - much undoing of doors, presenting arms, saluting us &c &c. Treasury very dull, then to Library & the two other kiosks overlooking the sea. In the last we were entertained: We all sat round the gorgeous room, many Turkish servants - one superior - first, one carried round a stand, with a raised centre, on which stood a glass jar of rose leaf jam. Tumblers of iced water surrounded it - you took a teaspoon & ate the jam, & drank the water - this left a beautiful, delicate taste of roses all down your throat & round your mouth. Next the servants brought in cigarettes & placed tables (very poor ones) with brass ash trays on them. Next a man in uniform: very gorgeous carried in a large round tray covered with a fine piece of embroidery another man followed with a sort of censer in which swung the coffee pot. The tray was uncovered & the coffee cups disclosed. We drank this - (it was brought round solemnly & poured out to each one) & the function was over. We rose & (with) much saluting & banging of muskets on the marble we retired. Walked thro' gardens & found the carriages - then to Bazaar, more 'engaging' than ever, bought a few things - pipe mouthpiece & an eikon. Then drove to the Club (near the Hotel) to lunch with Capt & Mrs. Bruen. Then grand squaring up of bills!"
28 "Rose at 8. Steamers continually calling. Lovely views - a straight line of view up to Black Sea. Walked into Embassy Gardens. Monument erected 1847, commemorating presentation of the land to B. Govt. by the Sultan. To lunch at the Embassy. All luggage in blue boat - we left in Ambassador's barge great confusion as to passports. All got off safely. Mauritius steamer 'Yangtse' - very large & roomy, but not clean. Last view of Stamboul - wonderful. To bed early & slept well."
29 "At sea, rose at 8, party all well & cheerful. The same views later - pink mountains, blue sea & sky, & little ships. Great heaps of salt (Govt. monopoly) all down the eastern coast - looked like ranges of huge white tents. Fair dejeuner at 10.30 - arrived at Smyrna about 2. No fleet arrived. As the Yangtse did not sail until next day we remained on board. Then came in the Carnarvon (Sir G. W's ship) & a boat came off. We all went over to the C. to tea - Sir G. & Lady M. & Mr Harris went ashore but Frank Mrs Craigie, & I remained on Carnarvon till 7. The Surprise came in & anchored & we went, with very thankful hearts to be home, on board & found Lady C. very radiant & welcoming. Gave Lady C. the onyx chibouk for stick handle. At last had some letters - eight had accumulated & I read them all at once." Alice, meanwhile: "Left Ridgehurst with Mrs. Speyer at 10.15? She took luggage to Paddington for A. A. to Stores & dentist. Then to lunch at Club, then to Liberty's then tea with Mrs. Worthington & then to Oxford. Mr. Townshend met her. Warm welcome."
30 "Good news of E. D.G. Went with Mr. T. & Miss Fleming to University Galleries, saw Turner sketches - lovely, & called on Mrs. Spooner (wife of William Spooner, or Spoonerism fame). At 3. somethg. left for home - found all well." Elgar: Rose early - glorious day. Frank. Lady M & I ashore went to the bazaar, much finer sight than Constantinople. Colour movement & camels - 100s - led by a donkey through the bazaar. Lady M. gave me a silver camel lamp in remembrance of my first eastern camel. Back to Surprise to lunch, Admiral came, rested through the heat & then all including Capt Bruen ashore: drove thro' the town right up to the fortifications - tomb of S. Polycarp - tremendous view, last part on foot to the watch tower. descended & made detour round the 'Camel bridge' Mrs Craigie & I drove together: wonderful gorges with remains of ancient aqueducts. we were in the last carriage harness broke - repaired with string & then wild gallop irrespective of rough road to catch the others, one horse fell - more broken harness - yells & excitement. Drove all thro' the narrow streets to quay. This was my first touch with Asia, & I was quite overcome. the endless camels made the scene more real than in Stamboul, the extraordinary colour & movement, light & shade were intoxicating."

October

4
Orville Wright performs the first flight of 30 minutes duration.

7
Great Britain offers to mobilise its fleet to help France against the Germans.

18
King Edward VII opens Kingsway and Aldwych, two new roads to ease congestion between Holborn and the Strand.

28
A general strike paralyses Russia.

30
The Czar issues October Manifesto granting constitution, legislative powers to Duma, ending the general strike.

October
1 "Rose late. Very, very hot & sirocco blowing - Peculiar feeling of intense heat & wind. Frank to Bulwark for service. Early lunch & then (at 2 o.c.) ashore & drove to the Mosque of dancing dervishes. Party -"
2 "Bad headache: Went for a short trip in the steam launch round the fleet. Beautiful views of a most beautiful place."
3 Maud Warrender remembers: "Unfortunately the weather broke on our way to Patras. HMS Surprise had a most uncomfortable way of behaving in a rough sea, quite unlike any other craft I have ever been in, a sort of corkscrew motion which, good sailor though I am, completely defeated me. Lady Charlie was the only one who did not succumb. She even managed to sit on a surging music stool and play 'The Ride of the Valkyries' at the height of the storm, when everyone else was prone and utterly miserable."
4 "Frank & I really too ill to attempt to go on - but no steamer possible until Saturday."
5 "For my tea the waiter ran out into the street as the goats were coming in. One was caught & milked into my jug, on the tram lines."
6 "Bought a dagger from the man who made it."
7 Kreisler is quoted in the Hereford Times: "If you want to know whom I consider to be the greatest living composer, I say without hesitation, Elgar. I place him on an equal footing with my idols, Beethoven and Brahms. I wish Elgar would write something for the violin. He could do so, and it would be certainly something effective."
8 Elgar sends a post-card to his father: "On my way home: starting off here. Goodbye to Greece. Love Edward"
9 "Arrived at Brindisi about five a.m. Deo gratias. Pouring with rain. Found telegram from Alice. To Hôtel to sleep & wash. Have to wait until five this evening (twelve hours!) for a train: Saw ships come in & much wine. After a long sleep walked round the dreadfully dreary town."
10 Alice notes in herdiary: "E. parted very sad from Frank at Bologna - & came on toward Milan. Frank to Venice."
11 "Arrived Calais at 2. Found Mrs. Craigie on the steamer rough crossing."
12 "Arrived Dover at four o.c. Train at once to Charing X. Arrd. Langham at 6.30; rested. Went to East End & tried to get Eastern food, dried fruits &c - then back to this dreary civilization."
13 "E. at Norwich staying with Mr. O. Taylor arr. there from Langham about 6.15. Had a good rehearsal & delighted the Chorus. A. in bed with severe cold trying to be well to see E. home next day."
14 "Back to London & on by corridor to Hereford & found my dear ones all well & safe."
15 Elgar writes to Professor Fiedler at Birmingham: "I arrived home last night (in Norwich for rehearsal) & hasten to thank you for your letters to my wife. Now as to dates: will Monday Oct 30th do for the next address or lecture & Nov 6th (also Monday) for the next and (possibly) the 13th for the fourth: if these days are impossible please let me hear."
16 "Miss Thomas & Mrs. Underwood came up in the morning & heard about travels. Very cold & frost. E. for a walk with Dr. Sinclair."
17 "Worried thinking of Birm."
18 Elgar writes to Ivor Atkins: "There be dogges a-mange in Stamboul. Bugges also. Likewise Ratons & Cokeroaches. Cattes but few; but I suspect ye pies."
19 "E. to London. via Birm. 9-50 train Dragon - Stayed at Langham."
20 "E. at Rehearsal at R. Academy for Norwich - Brilliant Rehearsal Rested & changed & home, safe, D.G. at 8.25"
21 "E. & May rode to Fownhope Church. Caught in heavy rain. C. & May to tea at Duchess' & stayed to go with them to Nelson Celebration E. Dragon joined them at Drill Hall - & brought them home."
22 Alice later noted "Very precious Sketch of Violin Concerto 22 Oct. 1905. Rediscovered 26 Oct. 1910 after Completion of Concerto."
23 "Busy packing for Norwich - E. & A. by corridor - Corridor late, met Omnibus at Padn. & started for Liverpool St. but missed 1st train just caught next 5.15 arr. an hour later at Carrow Abbey. Such a nice reception felt congenial atmosphere at once -"
24 "Carrow Abbey beautiful & delightful. Inhabitants charming. E. into town & then to Rehearsal - A. &c to beautiful rehearsal after luncheon -"
25 Elgar met Kreisler again at the Norwich Festival - and heard him play the Bach E major Concerto: "Sat through (Stanford's) Te Deum & enjoyed hearing Kreisler -"
26 "E. & A. to Festival. Beautiful performance of Apostles - Rapt, mystic, deep impressive. people seemed awed - Soloists wonderful - The whole day a marvel - High Sheriff to lunch - Then in Evening to Concert E. conducted Intron. & Allegro - much enthusiasm Huge at home in afternoon."
27 Alice writes to Alice Stuart-Wortley: "I wish you both could have been here yesterday: the performance was most beautiful, one of the most touching & impressive I have ever heard. It was good to see Edward look so serenely happy when not too overcome himself -"
28 "Left Carrow Abbey 8.30. Mr. Hansell had found Cousins, a man servant for E. for his tour - A. went on to Paddington & E. to Novello Then home by Corridor - All safe - D.G."
29 Elgar writes to Schuster: "I passed thro' town yesterday & saw poor dear Jaeger. He has told no one yet but he must return to Davos at once. Now the doctor tells him to bring a fur coat to lie out of doors in. It does not matter how old or shabby it is as he doesn't want it to show off (poor dear) but only to slumber in out of doors when he is in Davos. Don't trouble at all but perhaps amongst your many motoring sort of people there might be such a thing. If not - and you must on no account worry about it - I will manage somehow, but send me a line soon about this." Schuster sent his own fur coat.
30 "Reginald Symonds to tea to talk over the Mayoralty to be offered to E. Very nice. E. May to town bought chemicals, spoons &c. Carice in with a cold, or somethg."
31 Alice writes to Hubert Leicester" "I only trust & hope he will accept it as I feel sure it wd. be the very best thing for him, he wd. like it so much & I feel convinced it wd. be the best chance for the next part of the ‘Apostles’ as coming in contact about things with men, always interests him & does him good."

November

3
In London, Joseph Chamberlain attacks the concept of universal old age pensions.

19
One hundred drown in the English Channel as the steamer "Hilda" sinks.

22
In St. Petersburg, the Czar promises universal suffrage.

22
The great powers out on a show of naval strength at Mytilene to push the Turkish Sultan Hamid into reforms in Macedonia.

26
In Russia, Sailors mutiny at Sevastopol, and prepare for siege.

28
Sinn Fein, the Irish nationalist movement founded in 1899, declares itself a political party.

November
1 Elgar travels to Birmingham, where he gives his next lecture at the University - "English composers", stopping of in Worcester to talk to Hubert Leicester about the idea of Elgar becoming Mayor of Hereford.
2 Elgar writes to the Mayor of Hereford: "I have carefully thought over the proposition so kindly made to me, but I find for many reasons I must decline the honour."
3 Stanford writes to The Times: "If Sir Edward Elgar is correctly reported as saying from the professorial chair at Birmingham that 'English music is held in no respect abroad - that was to say, the serious compositions which up to the present time had been turned out' - he is stating what a little investigation at such musical centres as Berlin, Vienna, Leipzig, Hamburg, Amsterdam and the Rhineland will prove to be an undeserved aspersion upon the taste, judgement and perspicacity of foreigners and an unjust disparagement of the influence which has long been exerted by the music of his own country."
4 Elgar chairs a meeting in the Guildhall, Worcester, about the proposed formation of a Worcestershire Orchestral Society.
5 "Lawrence Houseman & his Mother Dr. Sinclair & Mr. Hull to tea - 9pin here - E. & L. Houseman long talk -"
6 Parry writes to Elgar: "It must be very interesting getting together a Library; and such a nice little lump sum to do it with too. Of course I shall be proud to present some full scores. There aren’t many! And to send you a book or two."
7 The diary records: "In the afternoon Frank Capper came to tea & Canon Dolman. E. talked long time -" Dolman was priest of the Catholic church in Herefor, which is described in a 1902 Directory of Herefordshire: "In Broad Street, on the site of an ancient nunnery dedicated to St. Catherine is the Roman Catholic Church, built in the Grecian style of architecture, and Abdicated to St. Francis Xavier. At the sides of the entrance are massive fluted columns similar to those of the Shire hall, surmounted by a pediment and cross. The interior is superbly decorated. The altar is of coloured marbles, and is a fac-simile of the Blessed Sacrament Altar in St. Paul’s at Rome: on each side are two stone candlesticks ... Accommodation is provided for about 500 persons."
8 Another Birmingham Lecture: the subject is Brahms' 3rd Symphony, a composition dear to Elgar's heart.
9 The Elgars travel to London: "Delightful Evening at Old Q. St. (Schuster's house) the Stuart Wortleys came, E. played new tunes of Apostles (The Kingdom - still thought of at this time as Part 3 of The Apostles) to them & Frank Quite beautiful -"
10 Elgar rehearses with the LSO for a provincial tour. W R Reed remembers: "These tours were run annually by Percy Harrison, a Birmingham impresario, who was a bit of a character. Elgar was very fond of him and he many times spoke in terms of affection of Harrison and his doings."
11 "Cheltenham Ready to start at 9 - No cab E. fled off in hansom. A. started but missed train. Left Padn. at 11. Found E. just going to Concert & thought Brahms Sym. might be in boxes - Unpacked - looked in vain. E. found it at Hall Frank had sent it on - Splendid Concert. Gorgeous orch - had tea with Packers & caught 6.20 train (back to Hereford)
12 Admiral Charles Beresford writes to Elgar: "Many thanks for your charming letter, I am so delighted to know that you enjoyed yourself so much during your very rough time in “Surprise” a noisy ship, a bad cabin, an execrable cook, and other discomforts too numerous to mention, but you will have realised with your usual good nature that I had only just taken her over and had not been able to get her right in the time. If you honour me by coming again you will I hope find more comfort and rest. My bandmaster is several inches higher since your kind notice of him. May all good luck attend you."
13 LSO concert in Birmingham. A review says: "Sir Edward Elgar, the conductor of the concert, had a great reception when he appeared upon the platform. Hitherto his reputation lm been greater as a composer than as a conductor. We do not wish his star to wane in the first of these capacities, but we must record his advance in the second. He had his forces well in hand throughout, and though sparing in gesture, and entirely without fussiness, he obtained every shade of tone he wished, and every variety of expression. He certainly had magnificent material to deal with, but tone and animation do not always imply artistry; it was this last feature that was so conspicuous in all the performances."
14 Elgar and the LSO move on to Liverpool, while Alice finds herself in the public eye: "A. C. & May to Exhn. A. had to make speech & open it -" The posters announce: "The Shire Hall Hereford, A grand artificial Flower Exhibition and Sale, To be opened on Tuesday November 14th 1905 at 3 pm. by Lady Elgar. A contingent of Crippled Girls will be present each day making flowers.
15 "E. went from Liverpool to Manchester. Glorious concert in Eving. Brodsky came in weeping saying Oh if Brahms cd. have heard yr. rendering, there cd. be nothing more poetic" The reviews don't quite agree: "This visit of the London Symphony Orchestra to Manchester for the first time was an event of uncommon interest and it was anticipated that this "invasion" would draw together as great an audience as had been met with on the previous day at Birmingham and Liverpool, but hopes wore not fully realised and there was only a moderate audience not over enthusiastic either. Various reasons contributed to this lukewarm reception both of Elgar and his music which predominated. The programme was not altogether well chosen. It was too advanced for the generality of the listeners, and nothing found place therein sufficiently strong enough to display the varied qualities of the excellent body of instrumentalists engaged. Sir Edward Elgar as a conductor does not inspire his players with enthusiasm, and this absence of magnetic power dwarfed some of the beauties of the Brahms Symphony."
16 An LSO concert in Sheffield.
17 On to Glasgow.
18 Still in Glasgow.
19 And today - Edinburgh.
20 "E. at Newcastle. Splendid performance & most appreciative right understanding audience -"
21 "E. at Bradford - Splendid performance in Evening."
22 The toure over, Elgar goes to Birmingham for the Jubilee Celebrations of the Midland Institute. Hall Caine writes to Elgar: "I have the Queen’s authority to publish, on behalf of Her Majesty’s fund for the relief of the Unemployed, a beautiful book, to be called “The Queen’s Christmas Carol”, and having submitted your name to Her Majesty as a possible contributor to the volume, I am writing in great haste to ask if you can kindly send something (however brief it may be) for this purpose." Elgar agrees - the result is the piano piece "In Smyrna", remembering his Mediterranean cruise.
23 Dorabella in at Hereford: "I also heard sketches and finished parts of The Kingdom at Hereford in 1905, and heard, with Lady Elgar after hours of patient waiting, “The Sun Goeth Down" played on the piano for the first time at about 2 a.m."
24 But all is not as well as Dorobella remembered: "Dreadfully worried. A. & Dorabella to call at Sufton Ct. & Mdrsfd. Rectory."
25 "E. cold still. Dr. East came. Long talk over E. & his work. Much worried."
26 "Much worried - Fate of 'Apostles' for Festival trembling in the balance."
27 "Chilly day, E. started to walk with May but soon returned, worried &c -"
28 Elgar writes to Alfred Littleton: "My cold is better but not well & I am a poor thing. I got frightfully sick of the tour although I found Mr Harrison a pleasant & amusing companion - but it was cold."
29 Another Birmingham lecture: English Executants. "E. frantically busy with Lecture, A. & May frantically writing it out till time to start. Worked all the way in train."
30 "to Theatre to see David Garrick - Very poorly given."

December

5
The Liberal leader Henry Campbell-Bannerman becomes prime mininster upon the resignation of Arthur Balfour.

14
Trades unions call for universal suffrage, old age pensions, and an eight-hour day.

19
The London County Council announces plans for the first motorised ambulances.

December
1 "Mr. Buckley to write an interview re storm raised by misleading quotations from E's Lecture -" the interviewer reported that Elgar was "genial, cheery, at peace with the world, and discovering the joys of chemistry in a laboratory which he had fitted out in the basement."
2 Elgar writes to Frank Schuster about the lectures: "I am afraid poor Alice is terrified at the thought that I shall be assassinated."
3 Algernon Ashton writes to Elgar: "I cannot tell you how interested I am to hear that you were one of the first violins in the orchestra when an Overture of mine was performed at the North Staffordshire Festival on October 11th, 1888. I thus feel immensely proud hat the greatest English composer should have participated in the performance of one of my works."
4 "E. to Malvern for Concert Club Meeting ... home at 8."
5 "E. rather better. Storm going on - over his Lectures. Very busy all day over his Lectures."
6 Another Birmingham lecture, on 'English Critics': "Anything ungenerous, ungentlemanly, illiberal, mean & contemptible comes happily out from our journalistic quarter."
7 "Lovely day. After lunch E. & C. for walk found old Bridge in Lugg meadows." This was Mordiford Bridge, which was frequently to be visited by Elgar during the Hereford years.
8 In Smyrna is published in 'The Queen’s Christmas Carol', an anthology of poems, stories, essays, drawings and music by British authors, artists and composers. The book was published by the Daily Mail on behalf of the Queen’s Fund for the Unemployed, and was edited by Hall Caine. Charlotte Knollys wrotes to Hall Caine from Sandringham: "... Her Majesty is most grateful to you and to the Publishers, Authors, Artists and Composers who have given their own time and work and are making such kind efforts to further her scheme on behalf of the Unemployed."
9 "After lunch E. A. C. & May for walk to see the Bridge in the Lugg meadows ... Nice telegram from J. Bennett re Storm raised by E.'s Lectures being wrongly or misleadingly reported."
10 "After lunch E. to Bridge in the Lugg meadows with Dr. Sinclair. Busy with his Lecture in the Evening."
11 Elgar writes to Professor Fiedler: "Lord Howe has sent me a special donation to pay for a complete edition of Schubert. Enclosed is his cheque: I am asking the Librarian to order the set."
12 The University Librarian was W.H.Cope, and Elgar wrotes to him: "Please enter the University as a member of the Purcell Society via Mr. W. Barclay-Squire, British Museum & get all the volumes which are ready."
13 The final lecture of the current series at Birmingham: a "Retrospect".
14 Alice writes to Jaeger: "This has been a very busy time as E. has had the Lectures crowded into such a short space of time. I wish you cd. have heard them, you wd. have enjoyed them. They have been so dreadfully misquoted in such a misleading way, what he says is far over the reporters' heads, they cannot follow him in the least, & all the beautiful parts are left out. Yesterday was perfectly delightful, the audience did thoroughly enjoy it & were in a suppressed state of clapping all the time. The reports give no idea of what his Lectures are. Now he is turning to Music again which is a great joy -"
15 "Prize giving School of Art. Town Hall - C. had a prize."
16 Elgar writes to his friend Charles Buck: "A friend, a young one - Alban Claughton, son of Canon Claughton of Worcester Cathedral has, I hear, obtained the organistship at Giggleswick Hostel. I hope you will soon know him: I am telling him of you."
17 "To Belmont (a local Catholic monastery) in Motor E. A. C. & May. Walked back -"
18 "E. going on with his work -"
19 Elgar writes to Alfred Littleton: "I am very much red-hot in my work."
20 The artist William Rothenstein writes to Elgar: "A movement was set on foot some months ago in Germany with the object of doing everything possible to allay the feeling of mistrust which has lately grown up between England and Germany. To this end the most distinguished representatives of art, literature and science prepared a letter which they have signed and which they desire to print in the English press, with the hope that a letter written in a similarly friendly spirit by their British confreres may be published simultaneously. I enclose a copy of the English reply which has been prepared to be printed with the signatures of forty of the most distinguished men of letters and science, musicians and artists, in this country, among which I sincerely hope you will allow your name to appear."
21 Julia Worthington, 'Pippa', writes to Elgar from New York: "Santa Claus had a stocking to go to Hereford. I hope there is snow and his reindeer are out!"
22 Mina Beresford, wife of Admiral Charles Beresford, writes to Elgar from Admiralty House, Malta: "... I am dying to see the new book (The Queen's Christmas Carol) which so far I’ve not got but I am hoping for it! Please write something for me in remembrance of the Greek Islands I shd cherish it much. The Bandmaster here is playing away all your nice things - & it reminds us of you. We all cherish the hope that you will come out again soon – why not?"
23 "Mr. Kenyon from the Musical World came at 2 - had lunch, then for a walk with E. Very nice man." Writing under the names of Gerald Cumberland, he reports: "So to Hereford I went and talked music and chemistry. It was Christmas week, and within ten minutes of my arrival Lady Elgar was giving me hot dishes, wine and her views on the political situation. The country was in the throes of a General Election, and while I ate and drank I heard how the Empire was, as Dr Kendrick Pyne used to say, 'rushing headlong to the bow-wows.' Lady Elgar did not seem to wish to know to what particular party (if any) I belonged, but I quickly discovered that to confess myself a Radical would be to arouse feelings of hostility in her bosom. Radicals were the Unspeakable People. There was not one, I gathered, in Hereford. They appeared to infest Lancashire, and some had been heard of in Wales. Also, there were people called Nonconformists. Many persons were Radicals, many Nonconformists; but some were both. The Radicals had won several seats. What was the country coming to? Where was the country going?"
24 "E. A. & May & C. to town Church. Mr. Hansell to Cathedral." Walter Hansell was a Norwich solicitor (and the firm exists to this day) who met the Elgars through his connection with the Norwich Festival. He was spending Christmas at Plas Gwyn.
25 "E. A. & C. & Mr. Hansell in Motor to Belmont. ½ hour too Early walked in the sunshine. Belmont beautiful - Walked back. E. & Mr. H. walked to the Lugg meadows Bridge - Lovely walk - Mr. Hull to tea - After dinner E. played Apostles music & end of 1st part of 2nd part to us & Mr. Hansell -"
26 "Misty chilly day. E. & Mr. Hansell into town. Mr. Hansell left for 12-45 train ... E. went on with his work - A. & C. to Waifs & Strays Dance ... Mrs. Worthington's box came Christmas present to E."
27 Alice writes to Troyte Griffith: "Will you come for next Sunday? Do, if you can, E. is pining to talk, he is working hard at the ‘Apostles’, I am thankful to say. It will be very nice if you will come & be here for N. Year’s Eve –"
28 "E. very hard at work Introduction to 2nd part of the 'Apostles'. Most beautiful - A. & C. busy getting through letters &c."
29 "E. working hard recreating his souse with Chemistry."
30 Elgar writes to Ivor Atkins: "I am seedy or should have sent for you to cheer me up on Friday. Belike I am now beyond cheer. The work (The Kingdom) goes on & must be seen & heard. When will you come? I have not much presentable yet."
31 Alice sums up the year: "A year of great blessings & journeys. America - & for E. the Mediterranean - & happy safe returns & finding C. & all well, on home coming. Much worry in some ways. E. oppressed with the Birmingham Profs.ship & worried & quite unable to write music. Very unwell over Inaugural Lecture, & again over Winter Lectures, but did them splendidly & made a great mark, so can look back with clear content on his 1st year's work there. Deo Gratias ended the year with a splendid beginning of the 2nd part of the 'Apostles' - May God give him strength & grace to finish it & bless & keep us & C. & all dear ones in N. Year."

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