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Updated June 2012

T. E. Lawrence to Robert Graves


2, Smith Square
[London]

Wed, night
[16 February 1921]

Dear R.G.

This is a scribble at 11.45 P.M. We sit late at the office, and so I've only just got your note. I'm exceedingly sorry your kids are ill: and hope you'll send me better news of them.

You say you may get to town this week. On Saturday I go to Oxford in the evening, for Sunday. Back on Monday morning. If you can, call at 2 Smith Sq. or ring it up Victoria 5960: or ring me up in the Colonial Office: room 9: and we’ll feed or meet somehow.

We are making a most ambitious design for the Middle East: a new page in the loosening of the Empire tradition: and are working like beavers to end it by Wednesday. This will explain distraction of note.

Yesterday one, but to-day three members of the Colonial Office staff came to the office without hats. It is said that the permanent under-secretary has placed his resignation in the hands of the S. of S.

This change fills me with money: your change will exhaust you. Will you let me know at once if I can be any help to you? I wouldn't have written it, but I'll be leaving so soon.

E.L.

Note: The content shows that this was written on 16 February, a week before the Cairo Conference agenda was completed (for approval on 26 February). Lawrence was already working in the Colonial Office, though not yet formally appointed. The letter precedes that of Saturday [19 February] in B:RG pp.10-11. In the interim, Graves told Lawrence that his shop venture had failed. Afterwards Lawrence and Churchill left England for the Cairo Conference

Source: B:RG 12
Checked: jw/
Last revised: 8 February 2006


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