Updated June 2012
T. E. Lawrence to his family
Another letter - and as usual an absolute blank. I have come to the conclusion that as I do nothing but work, and the work I cannot tell you about, that there is precious little hope of my ever having anything to say. If you could see Mr. Hogarth some day he would be able to tell you what I am at... but short of this there is no obvious means.
I enclose a stamp or two. We have also got out half-piastre values and I hope to get out the ¼ piastre in two days time. I hope to send Arnie a few more later. They may be valuable some day, for I am not printing many, and have taken steps to prevent any dealers purchasing them in bulk. You have no idea what an enormous and profitable affair the stamp trade is. Things in Arabia are not going too well. I hope that they will not go too badly though! The enclosed drawing is very good. I hope Arnie will be able to keep it up. His last letter contained some points of interest.
(a) Lucretius is most of him rather
dull, with insets of marvellous fire or beauty, which look the more
wonderful for their setting.
(b) Lucan no good at all.
(c) [Seven words omitted] Things are not so bad at all.
(d) I have a "good deal" to do with the Balkans!
(e) No maps of Aegean: plenty of the Turkish coast when you get as far as that.
(f) So called Lemnian Athena head is a very poor thing. Egyptian work never touches Greek. I have a very beautiful Athena seal which I will send you some day.
(g) I fear I cannot get home.
(h) Cheque enclosed will buy you 3 Loebs, and please send me the Greek Lyrics. I am just printing a rather interesting map, showing physical relief, and names, in one. It is done by combining wash and hill-shading in colours. A new idea, and I am pleased with the effect obtained.
|Last revised:||2 January 2006|
T. E. Lawrence chronology
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