We use cookies to improve your experience online. By using our website, you agree to the use of cookies as described in our cookies policy.

We’re experiencing issues with membership purchases online; to become a Friend please email friends@royalacademy.org.uk or try again this afternoon. Thank you for your support and sorry for the inconvenience. 

Maria Hadfield, [Florence], to Ozias Humphry, English Coffee House, Rome

RA Collection: Archive

Reference code



Maria Hadfield, [Florence], to Ozias Humphry, English Coffee House, Rome


20 Jan 1776



Extent & medium

2 pieces

Content Description

She apologises for not writing sooner; the opera started on the 26th December with a composition by Zanetti (not well received) and she saw Rubinelli, a wonderful contralto, whose voice is sweeter than that of Milico and Aprile, and somewhat in the manner of Mr. Parson; discusses a ballet she has seen titled Apollo & Daphne; describes a new opera by Traietta which was beautiful; Signora Carrera sang well in parts; the festival of dancing is being held in the Theatre rather than the Palazzo Vecchio, a friend's illness has prevented her from going; Mr. Toully gave a large ball and supper party to cheer himself up after the death of his mother.

She modestly declines to come to Rome, as Humphry suggests, until her talent deserves it; sends a message to Mr. Edwards; Mr. Townley said to Mr. Zoffany that she is a charming girl and if she had a good fortune he would marry her directly! She asks Humphry to tell Mr. Tresham that she expects him to dance with her at the Little Festival of the Pergola; news of Zoffany's work and Townley, and forthcoming dances.