T. E. Lawrence to Lionel Curtis
0 prophet, A raven told me of your troubles in Gayfere St. I was so sorry that I wouldn't add to them with a letter: they tell me that my letters aren’t gay things. That’s surprising, isn’t it? You’d expect Bovington’s slough to breed its opposite. However 'Completely recovered' is your last word. I'm very glad: but such suffering leaves a mark on the mind.
'Xmas? at Kidlington?' Well, you know, very wisely I deny myself holidays from camp: and I'm useful especially at festive seasons, since my habits enable me to take other people's duties while they enjoy. I told you about the others, last year: but perhaps not that I had done rations and coal-yard to set them free for their orgy. They will hope for my help again this time: and Xmas means something to them. My pernickety mind discovers an incompatibility between their joint professions of soldier and christian: is it that I attach a deeper meaning to either term?
Ave: . . .
I've written to Hartington too. Subscribers roll in for my book, which lately has been praised by H. G. Wells. Will you ever speak to me again?
|Last revised:||? February 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