Research and discussion
Page updated May 2012
Post-War Diplomacy and Enlistment, 1918-22
Select a year:
1918 Returns to London, argues the Arab case with the British Government.
1919 Attends the Paris Peace Conference, begins drafting Seven Pillars, visits Cairo, takes up an All Souls fellowship; Lowell Thomas lectures in London; the first draft of Seven Pillars is stolen when almost complete.
1920 Hurriedly rewrites Seven Pillars, begins a political campaign against the Middle East settlement, begins but then abandons a popular abridgement of Seven Pillars for publication in the US; begins work on a corrected and polished third draft of the full text.
1921 Joins the Colonial Office under Winston Churchill as adviser on Arab Affairs; orchestrates the Cairo Conference; assists Churchill with a settlement in TransJordan, attempts to negotiate a treaty with the Hedjaz.
1922 Leaves the Colonial Office, completes Seven
Pillars and has eight proof-copies printed; begins to
circulate the book in this form to critics; accepts a
proposal for a popular abridgement; enlists in the RAF as
'J.H. Ross' and is posted for basic training to the
recruits' depot at Uxbridge, and thence to the School of
Photography at Farnborough; his secret enlistment is
revealed in the press.
T.E. Lawrence 1888-1935
1888 16 August: born at Tremadoc, Wales
1896-1907: City of Oxford High School for Boys
1907-9: Jesus College, Oxford, B.A., 1st Class Hons, 1909
1910-14: Magdalen College, Oxford (Senior Demy), while working at the British Museum's excavations at Carchemish
1915-16: Military Intelligence Dept, Cairo
1916-18: Liaison Officer with the Arab Revolt
1919: Attended the Paris Peace Conference
1919-22: wrote Seven Pillars of Wisdom
1921-2: Adviser on Arab Affairs to Winston Churchill at the Colonial Office
1922 August: Enlisted in the Ranks of the RAF
1923 January: discharged from the RAF
1923 March: enlisted in the Tank Corps
1923: translated a French novel, The Forest Giant
1924-6: prepared the subscribers' abridgement of Seven Pillars of Wisdom
1927-8: stationed at Karachi, then Miranshah
1927 March: Revolt in the Desert, an abridgement of Seven Pillars, published
1928: completed The Mint, began translating Homer's Odyssey
1929-33: stationed at Plymouth
1931: started working on RAF boats
1932: his translation of the Odyssey published
1933-5: attached to MAEE, Felixstowe
1935 February: retired from the RAF
1935 19 May: died from injuries received in a motor-cycle crash on 13 May
1935 21 May: buried at Moreton, Dorset