Research and discussion
Page updated May 2012
Outline chronology: 1926
Lawrence begins to abridge Seven Pillars for publication by Jonathan Cape.
By 8 March Lawrence has finished his final corrections to the subscribers' Seven Pillars - just in time, for ten days later he breaks his arm while cranking a car. The accident leaves him without the full use of his right hand for the rest of his life. He makes a fair-copy of the Cape abridgement with the help of friends, and submits the text on 30 March.
Lawrence learns that he is to be posted to India at the end of the year.
The Daily Telegraph offers £2,000 for the serial rights to Revolt in the Desert (the Cape abridgement), which should substantially reduce Lawrence's Seven Pillars overdraft.
Lawrence gets a month's leave before going to India. In this short time, he sends the Seven Pillars sheets off for binding, manages a brief visit to Clouds Hill and to the Hardys, sits for Eric Kennington, who produces a remarkable bust, and sells his motorbike. He also makes over the copyright of Revolt in the Desert to a charitable trust. After repaying his overdraft, much of the income will be donated to an RAF charity.
On 8 December Lawrence sails for India on the troopship Derbyshire. He dislikes the voyage, which is cramped and uncomfortable. At Port Said he briefly visits Stewart Newcombe. He arrives in India early in January 1927.
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