The recipient of the letter, Oscar Wilde, wit and dramatist (1854-1900) was a contemporary of Rodd's at Oxford. In 1881 Rodd published a book of verse, Songs in the South. Wilde had this book republished in the United States in 1882, when he was visiting there, by J.M. Stoddart & Co., of Philadelphia. The title was changed to Rose Leaf and Apple Leaf and Wilde wrote an introduction, "L'Envoi". The letter makes no reference to the book but was written to Wilde in the United States.