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May 25, 1953

Dear Mr. Delaisse:

Do have my very best thanks for your letter of May 19th which pleased me, particularly in view of its encouraging character. I realize fully the difficulties we might encounter on account of some of the selling prices indicated by His Highness, but contrary to your belief may I say that I found the Duc d'Arenberg most understanding and I would not be surprised were he to give us every possible help to have such great works of art return to Brussels, whence they came originally. I shall try to have global prices when I call on you.

However, even though a global purchase might be too great a hurdle I definitely feel, as you do, that some of these Mss. should go to your Library and, I assure you, I shall spare no efforts in order to achieve this knowing fully the importance for Belgium of such exceptional documents. I believe that you will find some of them quite reasonably priced and this due particularly to the efforts I have already made in convincing the Duc of reducing some of the figures first quoted.

I am pleased to enclose herewith photographs referring to Mss. #20, #68 and #69, as per your request.

Of #20, because of the importance of the binding, I am sending you a back cover from which you will also be able to notice that the spine was remade at a later date.

Of #68, though you already have some of these reproductions in the catalogue I thought that its importance called for sending you better reproductions and I am also sending you a considerably enlarged photograph of the lovely personage bearing a lance and a chalice, for I noted the stress you lay on borders and the latter reproduction will give you a good idea of them.

I noticed that you left out Mss. #26, #28 and #67, whereas, as I wrote to you previously, I would have thought they would have been of especial interest to you. In view of the limited reproductions connected with these I am sending you two pages of Ms. 28, containing a small "portrait", of which there are several that I find particularly striking because of their great character.

Similarly, I am sending you a photograph from Ms. 78, also a charming Book of Hours.

TP
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