50 Greatest Letters brings to you letters sent throughout history that have proven to be enduring
symbols of love, sincerity, anger or of intense historical value. The love letters by Henry VIII,
Beethoven, John Keats, Emily Dickinson, Edgar Allen Poe and more impress upon us the longing
and the desperation of these love-stricken people in the throes of desire. The innocence of children,
such as Grace Bedell’s childish suggestion that ended up creating one of the most iconic American
images, of the young Helen Keller’s determination and optimism in trying to achieve what others
thought was impossible, of the twelve-year-old Fidel Castro’s cheeky letter to Roosevelt asking for
ten dollars or of little Phyllis’s innocent question of whether scientists prayed to God.
All these and more are present in this volume to give you a flavour of the time, and the mood the
authors of these letters were living in. It also becomes an exercise in looking at the economy of
words and information that these people of the past employed, something that we in our present
moment can afford to learn.