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T. E. Lawrence to Bruce Rogers


24/V/29

Dear B. R

This is going to be a fine thing, this book - all except the inadequate translation, of course!

I think that Gods should not have too much life about them. Men cannot have too much life. Athene admittedly is a difficulty: she keeps on dodging in and out of bodies, doesn't she ? I like '2' best of the three pencil drawings. The crossed arms please me, and the stiff yet vigorous pose of Athene. I think the lord of the thunderbolt might be a half-head taller yet. I'd make him larger than any other God or Man.

I hope you will not scrap '4'. 1 like those three figures very much. They are really funny, in their regard for one another.

The only figure 1 do not greatly love is the Zeus in '3' and also the Athene who faces him. They are a little too 'social' to please me. Their excess of movement makes the drawing more an illustration than a decoration: and while I like decorated books, I do not like illustrated books. Some formalism; great dignity; and a rich line. Those are the things which would go well with the Odyssey, I fancy. The simplicity of 1; the vigour of 2; and the humour of 4: I approve of all those. But poor 3 does not seem to be happy.

As for the postal service of Cattewater - there isn't any. We collect our own letters from Plymouth by a RAF postman, daily!

Yours

T E Shaw

The gold drawing is rich, isn't it? It will be a splendid book (a.e.t.i.t.)

Surely the Athene of 3 is the type of woman who would cackle?

Source: BR1 [37-8]
Checked: jw/
Last revised: 6 July 2006


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