Updated June 2012
T. E. Lawrence to Edward Garnett
It wasn't Nino Diabolo: it was The Piebald Horse, in the first edn. of The Purple Land, transferred geographically to the Banda Oriental; whereas it was written of the pampas, and is so returned in the El Ombu volume, with its place-names corrected back to truth.
The book filled a gap and gave me three evenings very great pleasure. There is something in Swedish stuff which gives me satisfaction. (Sorry for the prose, but I'm writing, a single hod-carrier on Babel, and no one with ears could write straight). It's an odd penance to have set oneself, to live amongst animals for seven years. Nebuchadnezzar did it, I suppose: the feel of tanks is so utterly unlike the R.A.F. and everything here disgusts me. My motor-bike is called into use when I find myself on parade facing an unconscious sergeant with my fists hard clenched. A hundred fast miles seem to make camp feel less confined afterwards.
Do you think Neb. made himself animal, like his companions? I thought of trying to write about him: a psychological study of the Frederic Manning manner....
When if you write again will you send me the London Mercury Office address?
Must stop writing: head gone to pap.
|Last revised:||28 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