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Asquith, Herbert Henry (1852-1928), 1st Earl of Oxford and Asquith, Prime Minister
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Letter from R. C. Trevelyan to Caroline Trevelyan

Trinity:- Hopes his mother is 'satisfied with the political outlook': they do not know much of what is going on here. The last thing he heard was 'that [H. H.] Asquith was engaged to Dodo [Margot Tennant, given the name of E. F. Benson's character said to be based on her]' but does not know if that is true; hope 'she will not treat him as badly as she treated Lord Chesterford [also in Benson's Dodo]'.

Asks if his father is well; supposes he is 'not put out by the fate of his bill' but rather looks on it as 'a grievance', which is 'always acceptable, especially when it can be well-turned to account'. George is 'quite well and happy'; Robert went for a walk with him and 'his erratic friend Baring' this afternoon. Baring's 'last performance' was sending a 'telegram to his patron Edmund Goss[e], purporting to be from his tutor Boughey, saying - "Poor Baring passed away quietly this afternoon Boughey"'. Boughey does 'not seem to have resented the trick' when he discovered it from Gosse's 'anxious enquiries'. Is going to tea with the Sidgwicks tomorrow 'at their new house'.

Asks how Charlie is, and whether he 'has begun to make any close and more personal acquaintance with his constituents yet'.

Letter from R. C. Trevelyan to Sir George Trevelyan

Trinity:- Is glad that his father's 'Committee has not miscarried', and hopes it 'will not be unproductive and without issue'. Has not had time to 'follow political developments closely', but read Asquith's speech 'with great interest and approval'. Harry [Yates] Thompson and Dolly were at Trinity yesterday to stay with the Master. Thompson 'turned up' in Robert's room at 10 a.m. as he 'was dressing for a late Sunday breakfast', and found him 'covered by just that amount of clothing in which Nelson's sailors fought at the Nile and Trafalgar'.

Robert also saw Thompson at [Henry?] Jackson's after hall. There was discussion of the [Apostle's?] dinner, which will be on 20 June: they are 'for obvious reasons, very anxious to get a good attendance this time' and will try to get infrequent participants to come. Asks his father to 'use [his] powers of persuasion' if he meets anyone in the House of Commons or elsewhere 'who might perhaps come without it'. They are 'anxious to know [C. H.] Tawney's address'; asks his father to send it to him if he knows it, or 'tell [James] Parker Smith, the president'. Welldon has been asked, and Robert hopes he will 'turn up'. Asks whether Lord Carlisle every comes. The 'Chancellor [of the Exchequer] is for various reasons we fear impossible'.

Asks whether all is well at home. Chanced to see 'an energetic counter-attack of C[harles] upon [Edward?] Stanley', but has not 'seen the provocation'; supposes Charles will keep it so Robert will be able to see it in London. Is staying inside all today with 'a cold in the head of the kind that makes one very stupid', but is otherwise well. George is speaking tomorrow 'on Disestablishment'; he 'must speak at least once a term, as he is now on the committee'; he is well, and 'thoroughly engrossed in his work'. Robert sends his love to his mother, whom he proposes to call 'Matuschka' in future. Harry Thompson says the Master 'ate something that did not agree with him at the Saturday dinner, and has to keep to his bed all Sunday from indigestion'.

Letter from R. C. Trevelyan to Sir George Trevelyan

c/o A. Waterfield, La Fortezza, Aulla, Lunigiana. - Thanks his father for his 'very kind letter' [12/93], and for the 'most generous arrangement on making good the income tax' on his allowance, which the previous arrangement was enough to cover; he and Bessie wish to thank his parents 'for this and other constant kindnesses of the same kind'. Wonders whether the Chancellor [Asquith] will 'introduce a graduated tax of some kind': the debate would 'give Charles an opportunity, as it is one of his subjects'. Thinks Theodore [Llewelyn Davies] 'was in favour of graduation in principle, though admitting the practical difficulties'; it is at times like this that he will be much missed. Robert used to get him to 'discuss politics at great length' about once a year, usually at their Cambridge Easter parties.

There has been 'thick snow' which has kept them in for several days, but it is beginning to disappear today and they are all going out: Robert by himself, the others [Bessie and the Waterfields] visiting the country villa of the Admiral who is 'the head of the arsenals at Spezzia [La Spezia]'. Last week they went to Lerici and saw Shelley's villa; the outside has recently been 'spoiled with hideous decorations' but the interior is 'very interesting and even beautiful'; some of the furniture is quite old and might well be from Shelley's time.

Today news has come in the Italian newspapers that Balfour has '"surprised the world by surrendering himself con armi e bagagli to his great amico nemico [friend enemy] Chamberlain'". It is a pretty end to the whole story'. Hopes a few of the 'late Balfourians will have the courage to stand out and... form the nucleus of a Conservative free-trade party'. Discusses the Pervergilium Veneris, a 'curious poem' for which he has 'always had a weakness'.

Letter from Sir George Trevelyan to R. C. Trevelyan

Welcombe, Stratford on Avon. - Glad to hear they are all well; Caroline sends love; a 'cuckoo for ever calling here' makes him think of 'the dear little boy' [Paul] and of 'Will Shakespeare'. They have just finished Hogg [his life of Shelley], and thinks more of Hogg 'in his queer way' than ever; has been reading a Macmillan edition of Shelley: 'What a poet!'. Has read [Roger] Fry's article in the Burlington Magazine, and paid a second visit to the illuminated manuscripts [exhibition at the Burlington Fine Arts Club] yesterday before leaving London; has also looked through the British Museum facsimiles here and at Grosvenor Crescent. Hopes Fry's wife will 'go on satisfactorily'. The 'Doctorate business' [his forthcoming honorary degree at Cambridge] is 'very plain sailing': Lord Halsbury, Lord Rayleigh, and Sir James Ramsey will also be staying at [Trinity College] Lodge; they lunch at [Gonville &] Caius, whose Master [Ernest Roberts] is Vice Chancellor. Others receiving honorary degrees are: the Duke of Northumberland; Admiral Sir John Fisher; Charles Parsons; Sir James Ramsay; Sir W[illiam] Crookes; Professor Lamb; Professor Marshall; Asquith; Lord Halsbury; Sir Hubert Herkomer; Sir Andrew Noble; Rudyard Kipling; Professor Living; they will 'advance on the Senate House...like the English at Trafalgar'. in two columns. Is looking forward to dinner in the hall at Trinity. Went to Harrow on Tuesday and will tell Robert about it and about the 'Cacciola affair'.

Letter from H. H. Asquith

Accompanied by a copy of the Grant of the Dignity of a Member of the Order of Merit to Professor Henry Jackson, D. Litt. with a stamp in the bottom left corner Certified True Copy dated 26 Aug. 1948.

Letter from Sir George Trevelyan to R. C. Trevelyan

Wallington, Cambo, Morpeth (corrected from printed Northumberland'). - Has finished "Sisyphus" more quickly than he meant to, as it 'drew [him] on', but still read it carefully; liked the second act very much, and a large part of the third. As with 'all pieces of fancy', the difficulties come with the 'finishing up'; this is 'very marked' in [Dryden's] "Absalom and Achitophel" and many of [W. S.] Gilbert's pieces, and Sir George himself 'found it absolutely impossible' to continue the 'story [emphasised]' of his "Ladies in Parliament" and 'turned it off into political declamation'. Expects the last part of Sisyphus 'would do in a musical comedy'. They [he and Caroline] were much delighted by the photographs of 'dear little Paul' which Elizabeth has sent. Is glad is 'going in against the Lords', who 'began kicking us' three years before Sir George was born and 'have gone on with it ever since'. Agrees with Robert that the Lords are 'very likely to amend the budget, or to throw it out'.

Letter from Edwin Montagu to Venetia Stanley

India Office, London.—Thanks her for her congratulations [on his appointment as Under-Secretary of State for India]. There is plenty of work for him to do, but he feels he has deserted the Prime Minister. Discusses Violet’s state of mind.

Letter from Venetia Stanley to Edwin Montagu

18 Mansfield Street, Portland Place, W.—Is unable to see him for tea tomorrow, but suggests other arrangements. She and Violet had a useful morning, thanks to the loan of Montagu’s motor-car.

(Dated Monday.)

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Transcript

18 Mansfield Street, Portland Place, W.
Monday

I stupidly forgot when I said I would be in to tea tomorrow after seeing Olive off, that I had already arranged to play tennis with Cynthia from 4 till 5, and at 5.30 I’ve got the Gnome. Could you come either Wednesday 6.30 or Thursday at 6? Let me know which, if either, of these fit in with your other many and complicated plans.

Violet and I had a very useful morning, owing to the invaluable assistance that was given us by the motor. Thank you so much.

Yrs
Venetia Stanley

Letter from Venetia Stanley to Edwin Montagu

18 Mansfield Street, Portland Place, W.—Invites him to Penrhôs for Whitsuntide. Is about to leave London. She and the Prime were the only ones who enjoyed bridge last night.

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Transcript

18 Mansfield Street, Portland Place, W.

Dear Mr Montagu

Its a very long way ahead, but will you come to Penrhôs for Whitsuntide? {1} I expect you wont be able to answer this as it depends on so many things, but you can leave it open and come if you can.

I shall be in London till Wednesday & then away for ages.

I believe the Prime & I are the only people who enjoyed Bridge {2} last night.

Yrs v sincerely {3}
Venetia Stanley

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{1} Venetia was at Penrhôs at Whitsuntide in 1911. Cf. MONT II A1/11.

{2} Probable reading. A hole has been punched through the word.

{3} ‘v sincerely’ indistinct.

Letter from Venetia Stanley to Edwin Montagu

18 Mansfield Street, Portland Place, W.—Invites him to Penrhôs, to attend the Investiture of the Prince of Wales.

(Dated Saturday.)

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Transcript

18 Mansfield Street, Portland Place, W.
Saturday

My dear Mr Montagu

Could you come and stay at Penrhos on Friday July 14th, or could you get away on Wednesday and come for the Prince of Wales’ Investiture at Carnarvon.

The Prime {1} and Violet are coming and Violet is going to stay over Sunday {2}. Its very easy to get to, and if you feel scruples about leaving the India Office for so long you can come by a night train Friday and if you are really conscientious you can go back Sunday night.

I know its fearfully far for such a short time, but it would be very nice if you would come.

I hope the outer Hebrides are proving a success.

Yrs
Venetia Stanley

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Black-edged paper. Marked ‘1911’ in pencil.

{1} This word has been struck through and ‘PRIME’ has been written above it, beside an asterisk. On the back of the letter is written, beside an asterisk: ‘It looked like Prince before.’

{2} ‘Lord and Lady Sheffield’s guests at Penrhôs, Holyhead [during Investiture week], will include the Prime Minister, Mrs. and Miss Asquith, Lord and Lady Boston, the Hon. Geoffrey Howard, the Hon. Edwin Montagu, Mr. William Phillips, the Hon. Mrs. Anthony Henley, the Hon. Blanche Stanley, and Captain the Hon. Oliver Stanley’ (The Times, 12 July 1911, p. 8).

Letter from Edwin Montagu to Venetia Stanley

India Office, London.—Accepts her invitation to Alderley. The Government have decided to break up Parliament early, and he is uncertain what to in the interval before the day on which he had expected his holidays to begin. Is satisfied with his Budget speech. Everything is going well [with the Parliament Bill], though Balfour is to move a vote of censure on Monday.

Letter from R. C. Trevelyan to Sir George Trevelyan

The Shiffolds, Holmbury St. Mary, Dorking. - The hot weather has returned, here the thermometer reads over 80 [degrees Fahrenheit] in the shade; hopes it is less hot for his parents. Was in London on Wednesday, which he thinks was the worst day, and saw at a distance 'the column of smoke from the Carlton Hotel' as he was on the way to see Fanny's First Play [by George Bernard Shaw]. Afterwards he went to see what was happening, but only saw a 'moderate crowd', and at least ten fire-engines preparing to leave. The fire did not seem to have done any external damage, but more may be visible by day. The 'Revolution [the passing of the Parliament Act] seems to have accomplished itself very quietly', and everyone now seems 'very grateful to Asquith for his management of affairs'.

Julian and Bessie are well. Tovey is at the Shiffolds, working on the score of the opera [The Bride of Dionysus]. Saw Charles on Monday, and had lunch with him 'just before the Censure Debate'; he 'gave a good account of Molly, and seemed quite cheerful'. Robert and Bessie are looking forward to their visit to Wallington in September.

Encloses, as a present for his mother, a poem from a 'young friend [Lascelles Abercrombie]... a descendant of Sir Ralph Abercromby, though he spells himself differently'. Thinks he has 'some real genius' and 'will do finer things before long'.

Letter from Sir George Trevelyan to R. C. Trevelyan

Wallington, Cambo, Morpeth. - Has given the poem to Caroline. Glad to hear that Julian is all right. Thinks the garden here is currently 'as splendid as any garden [he has] ever seen'; Keith 'takes an artist's pleasure in it'. Will not be able to send game for a while, as Sir George can only manage two or three hours grouse shooting now and Charles will not be here this week. Asquith has 'done magnificently'. Future dangers are 'national bankruptcy and disorder'. He and Lord Kinross once got through a long coal strike in the West of Scotland without one breach of order, though it drove the Chief Constable to suicide. Disorder should 'never be allowed'.

Letter from Venetia Stanley to Edwin Montagu

Alderley Park, Chelford, Cheshire.—Is sorry she missed him at Archerfield. Refers to his forthcoming visit to Alderley. The Prime is on good form.

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Transcript

Alderley Park, Chelford, Cheshire
Sunday Dec 24th 1911

My dear Mr Montagu

I should have answered your letter sooner {1}, but I thought I should certainly see you at Archerfield as I was told you were coming there on Friday. It was very sad just missing you. I left with deep regret last night and am still rather somnolent after a night journey which landed me here at 6 this morning.

It is very nice of you to have wanted to give me any present at all, I am sorry that it caused you such an unpleasant and unprofitable morning. You must have a very high standard I think of niceness and suitability, because I always find my great difficulty is to stop buying things.

I cant bear to think of you all having such fun and not being there, but its nice being at home too. We had a lot of chess at Archerfield, my great triumph was mating the P.M. twice and that old walnut Elwes {2} once.

Do you come here straight from Archerfield on Monday {3} or have you got to go to London first, Bongie is coming too from there.

Dont you think the Prime is in very good form, he was wonderful all the time I was there.

You’ll just miss Jonah here, but catch Bluey.

Yrs
Venetia Stanley

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{1} This is a reply to MONT II B1/26.

{2} Probably Gervase Henry Elwes, a singer.

{3} 1 January.

Letter from Edwin Montagu to Venetia Stanley

Archerfield House, Dirleton.—Is disappointed that he just missed her and wishes she were there, though it is a good party. Is concerned by the dangers that women’s suffrage presents for the Prime Minister. Discusses his planned movements.

Letter from Venetia Stanley to Edwin Montagu

Hôtel Monopole & Metropole, Lucerne.—Is waiting for Violet, whose departure (from England) has been delayed by illness. They will join them (Montagu and Asquith) in Sicily on Thursday.

(Dated Sunday.)

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Transcript

Hôtel Monopole & Metropole, Luzern
Sunday

I suppose Violet has wired to her father that she cant start till tomorrow so we shall be with you Thursday morning. I felt rather crushed and damped on arriving here after a dreary journey to find a letter saying she was ill. I nearly turned and fled home. However I’ve resisted that impulse and am awaiting her here in a very dismal hotel. The thought of Sicily and oranges is very delicious but horribly distant.

I hope your journey was successfully accomplished with the aid of chess, piquet and Lady Miriam Chrichton† Stuart. I dont know why I write as we shall see you almost before it reaches, but I’m very bored and desoeuvrée† {1}.

Yrs
Venetia Stanley

All my luggage has gone on to Rome!

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{1} Idle.

† Sic.

Letter from Edwin Montagu to Venetia Stanley

Maid’s Head Hotel, Norwich.—Beb and Bongie have arrived. Refers to the the news from Belfast [of Churchill’s speech there], and reflects on his own oratorical skills. Praises Churchill’s demeanour. The Home Rule Bill will, he thinks, be ‘all right’, but it may cause trouble in Ulster. He enjoyed their lunch together yesterday.

Letter from Venetia Stanley to Edwin Montagu

18 Mansfield Street, Portland Place, W.—Asks him to lend his Baedeker for Sicily to her father. Is sorry he was unhappy about his speech; everyone else thought it good. Invites him to lunch or tea.

(Dated Tuesday.)

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Transcript

18 Mansfield Street, Portland Place, W.
Tuesday

I wonder whether you still have in your possession your Sicilian Baedeker! If you have will you lend it to my father who is going there soonish. He is of an economical turn of mind and doesnt like the idea of getting a new one. Strange old fellow.

I am so sorry you were unhappy about your speech. Because everyone else really did think it good. The P.M. Margot etc, but of course if you were not satisfied about it, the fact that other people thought it good is not much comfort.

Do come here one day, tea lateish Friday, I mean about 6 or if you’d rather, lunch, not Thursday. I hate lunch, but possibly its your easiest moment. How wonderful the Prime was

Yrs
Venetia Stanley

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Black-edged paper.

Letter from Venetia Stanley to Edwin Montagu

18 Mansfield Street, Portland Place, W.—Repays a gambling debt. Would like to see him when he gets back from his ‘tour in the West’ .

(Dated Tuesday.)

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Transcript

18 Mansfield Street, Portland Place, W.
Tuesday

My dear Tante

I’ve never paid you the vast sum I lost to you when we were abroad. I cant remember exactly how much it was and the P.M. tells me he has destroyed the paper, but it was either £12 or £13. so will you fill up this cheque and pay yourself.

Come and see me when you get back from your little tour in the West. I hope its being a success. If you dont go to the Cuckoo’s Nest this Sunday {1} and are in London perhaps we might do something on Sunday afternoon.

The Nest is quite nice, but the weather was vile.

Yrs
Venetia Stanley

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Black-edged paper.

{1} 3 March.

Letter from Venetia Stanley to Edwin Montagu

Penrhôs, Holyhead.—Repays a gambling debt. Is sorry he can’t come to Penrhôs. Hopes his Budget dinner was not ruined by the absence of the Prime Minister, who seems tired. Thanks him for the use of his motor-car.

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Transcript

Penrhôs, Holyhead
April 3rd 1912

My dear Tante I never seem to be able to remember to discharge my debts to you. Here is now the 7/ lost at Littlestone {1}, and sent in the most disgusting and unnegotiable form possible: a postal order. I came here yesterday, it took me 8½ hours of tightly wedged travelling in the most awful atmosphere of cheap tobacco, but anything would have been worth while to get here. Its at its very best, blue sea and masses of flowers, and birds and all the indispensable properties of the country. The only blot is no verbena yet. I wish you could have come over one of the Sundays we are here, it is a bore that its so far from London. I hope you’ll have a peaceful delicious time with your family, its fun for you all having an extra day. Your friend Mrs Tyrrell is not coming here so you arent missing so much.

I hope your Budget dinner {2} was fun and not ruined by the absence of the P.M. I am afraid he is now beginning to feel really tired.

I owe you a Collins for your motor all last week and Thank you so much for 3 delicious drives. I am sure White must think you are terribly put upon by all your friends and must faint when he sees us all packing in.

Yours
Venetia Stanley

I’ve seen 10 oyster catchers, 2 sheldrake a heron, a cormorant, & several jackdaws. Does it make your mouth water?

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Written in pencil.

{1} Littlestone-on-Sea, a coastal village in Kent, on the edge of Romney Marsh. Bartholomew’s Survey Gazetteer of the British Isles (1914) describes it as ‘a rising and fashionable watering-place, with marine parade and good hotels. There are excellent golf links.’

{2} The Budget was introduced the previous day, and Montagu’s dinner took place in the evening. See H. H. Asquith: Letters to Venetia Stanley, No. 2.

Letter from Venetia Stanley to Edwin Montagu

Penrhôs, Holyhead.—Invites him to Alderley next Sunday, and praises Asquith’s speech on Home Rule.

(Dated Saturday.)

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Transcript

Penrhôs, Holyhead
Saturday

My dear Mr Montagu

If you are doing nothing next Sunday will you come to Alderley. I have suddenly, after 4 days loneliness here, been seized with a burning desire for society and the thought of another empty Sunday at the end of next week doesnt commend itself to me. You will, if you come, I warn you, find no one but Mother, Blanche[,] me and possibly Arthur. But do come if you are free. We go there Wednesday. I should rather stay here where it is really still too heavenly. Are you happy about Home Rule? I thought his speech {1} quite wonderful and would have given the world to have heard it.

I hope Ewelme is fun.

Yrs
Venetia Stanley

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Written in pencil. Marked in a later hand, or hands, ‘Jan ’13’ (struck through), ‘Home Rule’, ‘HHA’s speech’, the first two inscriptions in blue biro, the third in pencil.

{1} Asquith’s speech in the Commons the previous day, introducing the Home Rule Bill.

Letter from Edwin Montagu to Venetia Stanley

Ewelme Down, Wallingford.—Is sorry he couldn't go to Penrhôs. Refers to his companions at Ewelme. Discusses Asquith’s speech on Home Rule, as well as the general political climate, and asks for Venetia’s views. Sends her a present.

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Transcript

Ewelme Down, Wallingford
April 14th 1912

My dear Venetia

I was so sorry that I could not come to Penrhos this week. It was most kind of your mother to ask me and even though I was engaged here, I believe I should have rushed to Wales if I had not had to be in London yesterday.

I like this place tremendously but I am not calling this a very good weekend. The Prime is not in the best of form yet, I’m afraid and it makes poor Margot just a little —. Violet has Cys and Bongie and I want to talk to you. So beware of next time we meet.

Home Rule (I wish you’d been there) was a great day. The Prime expounded with great vigour and often with a first class phrase a really good bill. It was delightful to find his voice was very strong and that he lasted without visible effort for two hours.

I dont think he was quite appealing enough, if I may make criticism.

It was not merely a licensing bill or a budget it was a transcendent constitutional reform, great than the Parliament Bill because irrevocable and final. It had been attacked in the abstract by a large number of people whose alternative was nothing, so it wanted commending not only in its provisions but in its principles. I suspect because he did not want to speak too long, and also because he was determined not to try to bend the bow of Ulysses he was determined in his conciseness. And of course of its kind it was wonderful, never faltering in its strength, never lacking in its courage and above all never flickering in its dignity.

And there was the usual display of Conservative littleness, of meanness, of caddishness and rather a poor performance of Carsons. Both Redmund and Macdonald were good and so in his sincere stupid way was Capt. Craig.

For myself I feel that Home Rule is the most unarguable proposition in politics. For Imperial and for Irish reasons its not only inevitable but its opposition cannot be based on logic. Nevertheless in application like so many other unarguable axioms its very very difficult and all sorts of criticisms will be levelled at the workmanship.

So that what with an overloaded programme and no signs of House of Lords reform, the political horizon is by no means rosy. Edward Grey is very gloomily prophesying opposition before the end of the year because he predicts more strikes.

Dear Venetia, if you will do me the great favour of answering them, I should like you to tell me what you think about these things. You have a wonderful faculty of producing from me frank expression of views without qualification. You have a power even at this most damnable distance of convincing me of clear vision and and† thought. But you are most frighteningly reserved about yourself. All self contained people are and the greater they are the more frightening it is. And asking isnt much good but I sometimes feel rather mournful when I reflect that the inner you is as hidden from me (except at moments oh so rare) as it was a year ago.

And now do you remember that I could not find a Xmas present for you and you were generous enough to say that I might give you one when I found one.

Well I couldnt so I had one made and its rather a failure in colour and weight. Nevertheless in principle it fulfilled all the conditions I postulated and if its not turned out as I had imagined it, its there and will reach you—together with the drawing from which it was designed tomorrow.

Yrs ever
Edwin S. Montagu

Please forgive this letter being hypercritical, boring and I fear a little impertinent.

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† Sic.

Letter from Venetia Stanley to Edwin Montagu

18 Mansfield Street, Portland Place, W.—Is celebrating Blanche’s engagement with her family. Tomorrow she is going to Littlestone with Violet and the Prime Minister for one night, before going to stay with Conrad. Will invite Montagu to lunch if she does not go to Littlestone.

(Dated Thursday. This is a reply to B1/38.)

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Transcript

18 Mansfield Street, Portland Place, W.
Thursday

There is no vestige of floater {1}, but I’ve got my days terribly filled up. I’m just back from the Opera and am going to miss the 2nd Act and dine at home for a family beanfeast to celebrate Blanches engagement (Isnt it a joke!) {2} Tomorrow morning I am going to Littlestone with Violet and the P.M. in the motor, for one night, Saturday I go and stay with Conrad till Monday. Monday and Tuesday I have dreary things to do all day which brings us to Wednesday. If I dont go to Littlestone, which is quite possible, I will telephone to you and you might come to lunch if you liked.

This tiresome time table of my life shows you how stuffed up its getting.

I’m sorry I didnt get your letter in time to telephone to you.

Yrs
Venetia {3}

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{1} i.e. a faux pas on Montagu’s part.

{2} Blanche’s engagement to Eric Pearce-Serocold was announced in The Times on the 27th (p. 13).

{3} This appears to be the first time Venetia signed a letter to Montagu using only her Christian name.

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