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THE   BRONTES                    133
brother's infatuation at the Robinsons, when they
were together as tutor and governess., could no
doubt have written an account of wrhat happened:
she was observant, fair-minded and had a quiet
humour ; but she was as reticent about this as
about everything else. She had been secretly in
love with Willie Weightman : he was dead : life
for her wras very empty and sad : she suffered from
religious fears and she was consumptive.
BranwelPs health failed fast during this summer
but his death on September 24th was unexpected.
Charlotte, writing to Mary Taylor in New Zea-
land at the beginning of September, does not
mention Branwell ; her long letter is entirely
given up to an account of the visit which she and
Anne had made to London, on the spur of the
moment, in July, to see their publishers and to
dispose, once and for all, of the story that Wild/ell
Hall, recently published, was written, as well as
Wuthering Heights and Agnes Grey., by the author of
Jane Eyre. Charlotte's impressions, of the inter-
view at Smith & Elder's, of the Opera House
where they were taken, of her awful headache in
consequence of so much excitement, of the
Smiths' house in Bayswrater where they dined,
were as vivid in Sepiember as upon her return to
Haworth on July i ith. Branwell was nowhere in
her mind then : she had become indifferent to the
trouble of his existence. cú He is the same as
ever " - she writes, rather heartlessly, to Ellen,
later on in the same month - " But has not every
house its trial ? "
Two   months  later,  Branwell died suddenly.