William Orpen writes to his lover Evelyn St. George and sketches himself painting in the snow.

“All the country people here know several words of English now – sometimes they are very funny – one morning in Cassel, freezing cold and snowing, I was going to see the doctor and I passed a very pretty girl who hailed me with “Bloody cold this morning Major isn’t it?” You would have knocked me down. I stopped to speak to her but that was the only English she had”.


From a collection of letters donated to the National Gallery Ireland by Vivian Graves – the daughter of Evelyn St George and William Orpen.

Prior to donating the collection, many of the letters had been edited with a scissors – as is the case with this letter.


Post by Dominic Lee.