Omegna, Piedmont, Italy
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"Landing at Genoa, we lost no time in proceeding to the poste for Milan. Leaving Milan in the evening, we proceeded by train to Como where we slept and next morning started by steamer for the upper end of the lake. The best situation on the lake is Bellagio, built on a tongue of land dividing the two arms of Lecco and Como".
This is a page from a unique leather-bound volume of Robert Elwes’ travelogue 'A Sketcher's Tour Round the World', first published 1854, (see page 406 for corresponding passage).
The book contains the printed text of the manuscript but remarkably, the monochrome wash illustrations are hand painted by Elwes. The book bears a handwritten inscription ‘Mary F Elwes from her affect. husband Robert Elwes Jan 25 1878’, dated after Robert Elwes became ill at Congham, his Norfolk home. On 28th January 1878 , their youngest daughter Violet noted in her diary: “Papa much worse”. Less than three months later, Robert Elwes died on 17th April aged 58.