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Updated June 2012

T. E. Lawrence to Clare Sydney Smith

13, Birmingham Street,


Indeed indeed I should have written earlier, if unable to call: and I am utterly unable to call. My last visit to London was on business and it lasted just four hours. Not even a night in a friendly place. But then, my pocket is empty - and London is no use for careful non-spenders.

The evacuation of Manston must have been hard work: and in a few months will come the evacuation of England. Things, things, things - what fools we are to let them hang on to our affections. I lost a lot of books lately - and felt sorry instead of glad. Measure by that how short of Gandhi I fall in wisdom.

Please remember me to Sydney. I hope he is leaving England in good trim and according to schedule and inventory. The work at Singapore should be wide enough to occupy him wholly. Find an interest for yourself, do. I do not think you can fence out there: and there will be no boats. However, life is wide.

Mr. Breakey is at Calshot, doing the course. I saw him for five minutes. He expects Mrs. Breakey, and then I am to tea with them. Singapore has not made him old or dry or nervous, overmuch. I do hope you come back thence well, both of you.

A new control job hobbles me to the Power Yard. If it ever finishes, I will be able to get a night in London. Warning later!


The rug decorates my cottage. I am very glad of the inspiration that made us snaffle it suddenly. They are good rugs.

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Source: GR 224-5
Checked: jw/
Last revised: 4 July 2006


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