Updated June 2012
T. E. Lawrence to C. M. Doughty
5. 1. 20.
Dear Mr. Doughty,
I fear you will have thought me remiss in not answering you before, but I have been away, and when I got back at last decided that it was so old now, that I had better read Mansoul before replying.
I finished it today, in London, and I think I like it better than Adam and next to Arabia Deserta, of your books. Of course nothing can replace Arabia, to me, but Mansoul is very nearly doing so, in parts, though not as a whole. The Arabia is a complete picture of the life of the best sort of Arabs in the desert, and in the markets about the desert, and no picture of one people, by a stranger, has ever been painted like it, in my experience of books.
Did I ever tell you of our lunch with Mr. Balfour when the table voted on the best books of travel... five for you, and two for Marco Polo?
There are some things about Mansoul which I want to ask you about, but I will keep them till I see you. I want to contest one point... perhaps because I'm 30 and you 70!
Did I tell you about Augustus John? He has to go to Paris at the moment, but will be free perhaps at the end of the month, and will then write to you and try to arrange a date to come down and have a sitting. That is unless something unexpected happens: and it generally does, with John.
No news from Cairo yet, of course.
Please give my best wishes for the New Year to Mrs. Doughty.
T E Lawrence
|Last revised:||24 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