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    Sale 7652

    Exploration and Travel

    25 September 2008, London, King Street

  • Lot 116

    THOMAS EDWARD LAWRENCE (1888-1935)

    Price Realised  

    THOMAS EDWARD LAWRENCE (1888-1935)

    Two autograph letters signed ('T.E. Shaw' and 'T.E.S.') to Dr G.C. Ramsay, RAF Cattewater, 29 and 30 July 1929, together 3½ pages, 8vo. Provenance: Sotheby's sale, 8 December 1993, lots 236-7; the Spiro Family Collection.

    Lawrence has 'dug up' an American copy of Seven Pillars for Ramsay: 'I stress the effort in the hope you may excuse its being only the U.S.A. edition. I was too rash in promising copies to the people who did the show with me, and there weren't nearly enough to go round'; he responds robustly to Ramsay's 'puzzlement' at his happiness in the RAF -- 'Much the best life I've ever had. All the time in Arabia I was making up my mind thereto, if I got out fit and alive'; a postscript makes to apologise for his book, 'which isn't a bit modest: rather blatant, indeed. However it gives myself away with both hands'. The letter of the following day revises arrangements, as the book is too heavy to go by book-post ('My fault: it is too long-winded'), and Indian Customs would go over it if it went parcel-post ('Customs are a spawn of hell'); he will be happy to send it to an address in a 'civilised country'. (2)


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