08 November 1839

A- got ready to go then began to cry and I at last persuaded her to stay at home.

No, if I did, I should not go – she said that consoled her. Asked after A-, how long she had been with me – five and a half years – had I known her long? All her life. Hinted at her being so unlike me – I said the being like was not necessary, being suitable was a different thing. [Princess] R[adzivill] thought she was very mild – yes, but she orders the house – R- should not have thought her capable of this. Poor A-, I see they wonder at her and at me for having her.

29 November 1839

I praised the elderly beauty and the house of the old Countess all right – asked what we were to do about leaving cards or what – yes, perhaps by and by – perhaps……as if she might invite us again or not – as if she was quite the great personage. Somehow there is a something I do not quite understand – perhaps they are unwilling to consider us among themselves as noblesse and I should be impatient of anything under – there is a something.

Am I beginning to feel not quite at ease to fancy people do not call etc?

25 November 1839

[Countess Kutaisoff] is to have a large plaster on her stomach and take petit lait, four or five cups – one every half hour. Has the piles – all the Russians have them, particularly the women – even the servants. Count Panin, when I observed that our princess looked ill – what could be the matter with her – thought perhaps she had too many doctors and too much physic.

19 November 1839

Poor A- in tears again. She cannot understand and can neither learn herself nor, in fact, let me learn – the idea of her and my learning anything together is too absurd. Oh, that I could be a little more to myself – both of us would gain by it. It is terrible – I cannot be let stir without her. I have not a moment to call really my own nor can I buy a book or a chiffon without her. This cannot last.

Princess really cordial to me tonight – asked me to write something in her album. Gently observed that Mrs V- was of another society – disagreeable to make those acquaintances but she did it to please her mother – the old lady pleased with my admiration of Princess R[adzivill].

The emperor lent him sometime back, on mortgage, seven hundred thousand roubles.

16 November 1839

Well, I am glad our princess is going. I wished I had not gone there this evening for, tho’ she is always ladylike, I believe I was not wanted. At least, I felt this and was gauche and mortified as before. Enough of all this. Take care of such intimacies in future – I will not show my sense of this but take a quiet useful lesson.

15 November 1839

Incurred a cross last night thinking of the princess.

He has sent a friend to inquire for a la Quaid de place at…

She smiled and said – c’est vous – she has a sort of journal that nobody can understand – leaves and flowers and dates.