Updated June 2012
T. E. Lawrence to Lord Carlow
All work and no play here. I hope not so your end. If it is really snowing, you should be able to ski universally, and rumble about promiscuously - when it stops of course. Don't sit under one of your avalanches!
Boats are going well. All armour has been returned, modified from Hadfields, and we are keen on keeping our promised finishing date of March; for all boats. Into the water, that is; not necessarily finished tests. I might leave here (and the R.A.F., alas) immediately after.
Sometimes one is lucky with a bale of stored and shop-soiled knowledge... like yesterday, when I was able to take a solemn party over York Minster, and detail its glass and distinguished Nottingham alabaster... and to-day, when we sketched out an oil-hydraulic lifting gadget for the armoured hatches. But mostly one's learning is a bundle one keeps on carrying aimlessly about. A man who only stocked serviceable knowledge of current items would be fortunate until he got into strange waters. To acquire more and more knowledge becomes a craving, like drink: with the same hopeless end, for one can no more learn everything than drink Rheims dry.
That little Whitby motor-ship was built at Middlesborough only two years ago. The old fellow runs her more as a hobby than a business!
Other news? I have an Aesop's Fables for you, a duplicate that came my way: well printed and amusing. A private book.
There is not going to be a film of me. Korda proved most reasonable and decent, upon acquaintance.
John (Augustus) painted a small head of me last month. It is very good. He also drew me (in R.A.F. togs) ¾ length in charcoal. Also good. And he gave me the drawing, which is also good: very good indeed, in fact. John is a great man.
My regards to P. Beg her to avoid avalanches, also, please.
|Last revised:||15 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