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Updated July 2012

T. E. Lawrence to his mother


Jan. 10 1911

Your letter just come: Dec. 22... will write to the Canon... later. Arnie shall have coins. I have collected some half dozen already. Some duplicates will come: for Πενων. If Cristoid films are out of date, or making, you must choose another sort, but get Cristoids if possible: flat films, cut, ¼ plate, in any case not Kodoid. Arnie's jackal may be difficult: there are heaps of them howling round the house every night, but they seem to cling to the bushy part of their tails: however I will ask Abdullah about it. Arnie will enjoy Greek. I enclose Will two or three inscriptions; the seal is curious. I would be glad if he would ask Leeds about it and let me know: the man wants to sell it. I have bought, for 3/1 an Arabic prayer book of 1145 A.D. small, but very well written. I want it as a model to learn writing from. The modern hands are unsatisfactory.

About money: I have enough for the present purposes (I don't know how much, and it would involve a search to find out). So it doesn't much matter. I enclose Cook's paper: put in what amount you please; if it is equally convenient send me enough, at a lump, for my July-September wandering (£8-0-0) and my return (about £16-0-0) for expenses must be past paying for now. Miss Holmes is perfectly suited with a cheque, for her bank takes all such and settles them as in Europe. I am returning Cook's paper filled up: I don't know what you will do with it, if anything: but it seems fairly safe to send it back. I have no pen at all which is readable. Time out here is quiet: get up about sunrise, (6) and bed soon after 12 or 1. It is a little chilly in the evenings, too much so as to sit up late. Fine weather the last fortnight. I do little beyond Arabic, photographs, and receive visits from antiquity-mongers. But the manuscripts are the best things. Of modern books I have only a Koran and an Antar: neither to be understanded yet.  I have learnt how leben is made: it will all come on to you next letter when I have time. Mr. New's little drawing is very lovely: I'll send him a line to say so. About Arnie's Greek: let him bear in mind that it is a living language, and that nothing in it is without significance: above all it is the antithesis of everything 'natural', the most artificial of all things in art and life, and literature: artificial in a neutral sense. Will please explain these utterances. I am, according to Miss Holmes, eating well, and sleeping well: she sends you this for your material comfort. If it is so wet and cold in England you and Father are no doubt in distress: please emphasize on him the desirable climate further South: then as soon as Arnie is grown up you will get away. We get The Times here so I am up to date. Take care of yourselves: England is an unrestful country, and the risks of life and health very much greater than here: I wonder if Winckworth will come out? Only six weeks off now.


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