Letters of Maria Celeste:
9 March 1631
Most Beloved Lord Father
Because I am absolutely certain that by now you must have received my last letter, Sire, which I wrote many days ago, I will not repeat its content, except to assure you again of my well-being, and the good health of all my friends, by the grace of God. It is quite true that all these retreats and quarantines give, or rather have given, my imagination too much play, while they prevented me from receiving frequent news of you, Sire. However, I do believe that any day now they shall have to come to an end, and as a result we will soon be able to see you again. Meanwhile I want to know if you are well, because that is what matters to me above all else, and also if you have word of Vincenzio and my sister-in-law.
I am returning two empty flasks, and I send you these little spiced cakes which I think you will enjoy, provided they are not, as I doubt, cooked still longer than that other one, which your teeth may still recall.
The rainy weather of late has kept me from making you any of the rosemary flower jam, which I have been meaning to do, but the moment I am able to dry the flowers, I will prepare some and send it to you.
For now I offer you loving greetings together with Suor Arcangela and the usual friends. I pray Our Lord to keep you in His holy grace, and I want you to give yet another kiss to little Galileino with my love.
From San Matteo, the 9th day of March 1630.*
Most affectionate daughter,
*On the Florentione calendar the new yead began on 25 March
©1995 Al Van Helden