Updated June 2012
T. E. Lawrence to his family
Got a letter of August 9 from you, which shows you never got a letter I sent you some time in July (12th I think) telling you what had happened on the way to Akaba. As a matter of fact it was a poor sort of letter, because I was rather doubtful how much to say. Either I said too much, or the ship sank.
I'm now off for a trip inland, lasting for about 3 weeks I expect, so this is the end of letters for the time being: indeed it's only as camels are late that I can write this anyhow. Since July 10, when I got to Egypt from Akaba I have been to Wejh, Jidda, Yenbo, Akaba, up country, back to Egypt, to Alexandria, up to Akaba again, up country, back, and am now going up again - So you see it is a mobile sort of life, this.
Tell Mother they asked for that twopenny thing she likes, but fortunately didn't get it. All these letters and things are so many nuisances afterwards, and I'll never wear or use any of them. Please don't, either. My address is simply T.E.L., no titles please.
In reply to Father's query, yes, I have boils, lots of them. They began in March, and will go on till I have time to get to Egypt and be inoculated. Only I am usually too rushed in Cairo to get anything of my own done. Am very fit and cheerful enough when things are not too hectic. Going up country is always a relief, because then there is only one thing at a time to do. Is Elsie Hutchins married? I have had a letter signed Elsie, and think it must be from her. Will you get me Janet's address again, I've lost it. Cheque enclosed for £300. Will you ask Father to invest it for me? I can't do anything out here: Ask him to put it in the most obvious thing, without troubling himself - or keep it, if you want money.
Am off now.
|Last revised:||9 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