Updated June 2012
T. E. Lawrence to R. V. Buxton
I went to Cape and offered him 125000 words (about 43%) of The Seven Pillars, with as many of the black and white illustrations as he wants (two, I expect, or three) for publication under another title in England and America in the spring of 1927.
He agreed, provisionally, and is working out a contract for my approval. Upon its signature (? a fortnight, since G.B. Shaw and others must see it before I commit myself) he will pay £1500 to my account, and a further £1500 after six months.
This seemed to me enough, so I've cancelled the sale of my books. I'd rather keep them than anything I've ever had. It pours money. A builder of Chingford offers me £3. 17. 6. a foot for 400 feet of my hill. I can put him off now, I think? The value rises year by year.
The R.A.F. are flirting with the idea of my return to them. I hope so. To be settled in May.
G.B.S. writes, offering to guarantee my overdraft!
Don't make any further hard efforts after subscribers. The Cape money will clear the Bank of my liability: and I'll expect to place the balance of 50 copies or so when the first batch have been sent out. Meanwhile any names which roll up will be welcome, of course.
Brough has brought out a new and most wonderful 'bike, which will do 112 m.p.h. so long as the tyres will stand it. I'm going to blow £200 of Cape's on that.
Yes, I know what you will say: - but I like the lovely things, and it's the money well lost.
|Last revised:||8 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