Letters of Maria Celeste:
26 April 1624
Most Illustrious and Beloved Lord Father
What great happiness was delivered here, Sire, along with the news (via the letter that you ordered sent to Master Benedetto [Landucci]) of the safe progress of your journey as far as Acquasparta, and for all of this we offer thanks to God, Master of all. We are also delighted to learn of the favors you received from Prince Cesi, and we hope to have even greater occasion for rejoicing when we hear tell of your arrival in Rome, Sire, where persons of grand stature most eagerly await you, even though I know that your joy must be tainted with considerable sorrow, on account of the sudden death of Signor Don Virginio Cesarini, so esteemed and so loved by you. I, too, have been saddened by his passing, thinking only of the grief that you must endure, Sire, for the loss of such a dear friend, just when you stood on the verge of soon seeing him again; surely this event gives us occasion to reflect on the falsity and vanity of all hopes tied to this wretched world.
But, because I would not have you think, Sire, that I want to sermonize by letter, I will say no more, except to let you know how we fare, for I can tell you that everyone here is very well indeed, and all the nuns send you their loving regards. As for myself, I pray that our Lord grant you the fulfillment of your every just desire.
From San Matteo, the 26th day of April 1624.
Most affectionate daughter,
©1995 Al Van Helden