From the 19th to the 28th (19th to 27th of April 1874)

Cosima Wagner Diaries

All the exertions of moving, during which I receive a terrible blow with the news of Marie Muchanoff’s mortal illness and awful pain . . .

Many treasures from the rich contents of mind and heart are now lost to this book for ever, since, numbed by the shock and in any case over worked, I only take up my pen again in the new house (the final happiness) on 29th. 

But isolated details I can still note down. R. packs his books away, and we keep out only Shakespeare, the Indian proverbs, and Schopenhauer. The last of these was the only one to which I could listen on the day I received the news that my friend was dying. 

Then we read Julius Caesar, which always impresses me as the most tragic of all tragedies: from the very beginning all is lost, and the people seem like ghosts; curious how Sh. here so closely reflects the impressions of people and things that one received from Plutarch in one’s youth. —

Within the last few days R. had a strange dream about Mendelssohn, who did not wish to write something for Schroder-Devrient, since she had not sung at his funeral! Then again and again the old dream about Minna, who was still alive, and R. kept asking himself, “My God, what is going to happen with Cosima? Well, she can’t live forever”—and with these words he wakes up. — 

The last letters I receive in the old house are from my mother[1] and E.O.[2]; the former cannot send me my 40,000 francs, and the latter will not return my jewellery (left with my sister Blandine)! — 

[1] Marie d’Agoult (1805–1876): German-french author, mother of Blandine, Cosima and Daniel Liszt.
[2] Emile Olivier (1825 – 1913): French statesman, husband of Cosimas’ sister Blandine (1835 – 1862), who dies 2 monthes after the birth of her son at the age of 26.

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