Tamburini, Antonio. (1800–1876)
"Would you please permit an ex-artist to submit himself under your protection." - Autograph Letter Signed
Autograph letter, the body probably in a secretarial hand, from the great Italian baritone to Madame la Comtesse de Keller. 2p. of embossed bifolium, no date or place. In French. In part: "Would you please permit an ex-artist, who is so used to favors from the high aristocracy ... to submit himself under your protection, Madame, to pass my enclosed letter on to His Imperial Highness." Signed "A. Tamburini". Together with envelope addressed to "Madame la Comtesse / Comtesse de Keller /Hotel Windsor" in the same hand; inscribed "From Mr. Tamburini" on back. The correspondent is not identified in the letter itself.
Antonio Tamburini was one of the most famous and sought-after baritones of his time. He participated in a large number of first performances of operas by Bellini, Donizetti, Mercadante and others. His correspondent is possibly identical with the "Comtesse de Keller" portrayed in the well-known 1873 painting by Alexandre Cabanel.
"His Imperial Highness (Son Altesse Impériale)", to whom the letter (not preserved) attached to the present one was addressed, was the official style of Napoleon III (1808–1873) before he crowned himself emperor in 1852, and of his son Louis-Napoléon Bonaparte (1856–1879) throughout his life. If the reference is to the future emperor, which is likely, this would allow to date the letter to before 1852.