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PETH/6/157 · Unidad documental simple · 9-10 Apr. 1946
Parte de Pethick-Lawrence Papers

Office of Cabinet Delegation (as 6/153).—They are interviewing many interesting people. He and Alexander hope to visit the Taj on Sunday, and the mission have now received the required formal invitation to go Kashmir at Easter.

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Transcript

Office of Cabinet Delegation, The Viceroy’s House, New Delhi
April 9 (To be Posted 10th)

Dearest One

It is a refreshment to sit down before dinner & commune with you after the heat of midday & the burden of the interviews & talks. And I have just had a letter from you dated April 5 from Fways saying you have had my letters of Mch 28 & 30. I have an earlier letter (April 3) from you also to acknowledge & an enclosure from Lydia for which please give her my love & thanks. You ask whether you shall address me to 2 Willingdon Crescent or wht; it doesnt matter at all. So long as the letter comes out in the official bag it will be delivered to me by Turnbull to wherever I am. Equally I presume when I write a letter to you & send it to the India Office tht they will send it to 11 O S or to Fourways according to wht E K tells them.

We are seeing a great many interesting people both formally & informally but it is sometimes rather drowsy work listening to their soft & droning voices. Sir C P Ramaswami Aiyar (who was in the cartoon I sent you yesterday “Sir C P”) was an exception with his vigorous & determined voice, & Joshi whom we saw this afternoon was most interesting. I am sending you the latest programme. You will see we are to meet 2 women on Thursday.

We shall very soon have to be thinking in earnest about our method of tackling the main problem or problems. But of course this has in a sense been going on all the time.

I had a swim in the swimming pool yesterday evening & again tonight. It is quite a large bath & it takes the heat out of one’s body. Alexander & I hope to go to see The Taj Sunday morning. The Cashmir trip at Easter awaits an invitation from the Ruler about which there appears to be some hitch. (now resolved 10. iv. 46)

I have had nice letters from Mrs Subbarayan & also from Mrs Hamid Ali whom I think you know.

I send you an early picture of me taken at Karachi which you may nt yet have seen.

I am most interested in your Fways news & your a/c of your amazing hot weather. I do hope there are no more frosts. Here it continues to get hotter & there is a haze about all the time which makes it somewhat humid. (102º yesterday 9th)

My dear I think of you with such love.

Your own
Boy

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There are a few characteristically abbreviated words, including ‘wht’ for ‘what’.

{1} PETH 6/151–2. Lady Pethick-Lawrence’s letter of 5 April does not survive.

{2} ‘April 3’ interlined. The brackets have been supplied. This letter does not survive.

PETH/6/177 · Unidad documental simple · 2 June 1946
Parte de Pethick-Lawrence Papers

Office of Cabinet Delegation, The Viceroy’s House, New Delhi.—Proposes the idea that an equilibrium is ordained in the world between good and evil. The work of the mission is likely to reach a crisis in the next few days.

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Transcript

Office of Cabinet Delegation, The Viceroy’s House, New Delhi
June 2. 46

My dear One.

Here is an idea which came to me a few days ago tht seems to me interesting & possibly new though you may have come across it before. It appears to me to be the case that in this world of ours in which we live there is ordained an equilibrium between the forces of good & evil. Just as in the astronomical world the planets are held in their courses by the balance between the centripetal force of gravitation & the centrifugal tendency created by their own motion, & in the atomic world the protons continue to whizz round the nucleus for similar reasons & positive & negative electricity are equal & opposite {1}, & in the human being spirit & matter balance one another, so I suggest in the moral world an unexpected equilibrium of good & evil, & it may be tht this is, strange as it may seem, a law of life. This is something like a saying tht you once quoted to me to the effect tht the devil was the fourth side of the square of the divine. If it is true, it would account for the fact tht the moment anything good appears an element of evil springs up to destroy it & vice versa. It may also be the reason why in this world a rise & fall must occur on the wheel of existence. The equilibrium must not be confused with stagnation. A river is constantly flowing down to the sea and yet year in and year out rain & evaporation keep a fairly constant volume of water in it. A school has roughly the same proportion of scholars in its classes from year to year & yet each child is progressing through the curriculum.

Of course like all other macrocosmic laws there is nothing in this as a guide of conduct for the microcosm whose duty must always be to pursue the highest tht he can see at any one time.

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It is a relaxation for me to think on such things & to be able to write to you about them. I have talked about them to Melicent† Shepherd. She is a little puzzled as to how they fit in to her Christology, but she is such a dear & so broadminded that it will do her no harm & she does not resent it.

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My labours here continue unabated. The days tht lie immediately ahead are likely to be days of crisis & anything may come out of them. I hope to be able to leave about June 15 but it is all quite problematical. I enjoy getting your letters. I love you passionately. I slept all night after spending hours preparing a document. It is very hot. I had a little drive yesterday & visited some sights. I do hope I shall be back before the end of June at any rate. They threaten to cut off our bathes if the water people go on strike.

All my love my darling
Boy

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The abbreviation ‘tht’ for ‘that’ occurs a few times.

{1} ‘& positive . . . opposite’ interlined.

† Sic.

PETH/6/179 · Unidad documental simple · 6 June 1946
Parte de Pethick-Lawrence Papers

Office of Cabinet Delegation, The Viceroy’s House, New Delhi.—It is very hot. He has allowed the probable date of their departure to leak out in order to help the parties take definite decisions. A possible date for election to the constituent assembly is being canvassed in some provinces.

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Transcript

Office of Cabinet Delegation, The Viceroy’s House, New Delhi
June 6. 46

My dear.

It is certainly very hot. 112º maximum in the day is bad enough but 93º minimum in the night is worse, in spite of air conditioning & fan. Last night, almost for the first time, I was a little rest-less & about 4 o’c I went into my bathroom & got into a bath of wht does duty for cold water (a few degrees below blood heat) & lay down in it. I dozed off & dreamt tht you & I were driving down from Mascot to Dorking Station in a horse-drawn fly of Bucklands. We agreed tht at our age (our present age) there was something to be said for this placid method of progression. This pleasant little dream so soothed me tht when I got back into bed I slept peacefully till I was called for at 6.30.

I have no fresh news to give you about our plans. I have purposely allowed our intention of leaving about June 15 to leak out as I think it may help the parties to take definite decisions. A possible date for election to the Constituent Assembly is being canvassed in some of the provinces, & no objected has been xpressed. By the time you receive this letter which can hardly be before Tuesday 11th, you may be able to glean from the papers the likely course of events. As soon as anything specific has been decided no doubt the India Office will learn it & will communicate with Esther.

Apart from being homesick I confess to being a little weary but I can certainly stick it another 10 days or fortnight or even a little longer if really necessary. But my feeling is tht there is no real advantage to be gained by being willing to prolong our stay beyond a certain point & I still hope to be able to get off on 15th, & I am making all my preliminary preparations on this assumption.

My dear I love you so & I long to be with you again.

Your own loving
Boy.

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This letter includes the abbreviated forms ‘tht’ for ‘that’, ‘wht’ for ‘what’, and ‘xpressed’ for ‘expressed’.

PETH/6/180 · Unidad documental simple · 8 June 1946
Parte de Pethick-Lawrence Papers

Office of Cabinet Delegation, The Viceroy’s House, New Delhi.—The weather is cooler. The Muslim League have accepted the plan for constitution-making, and Congress may do so, but there may be a dispute about the interim Government. Discusses their date of departure and related arrangements.

PETH/6/189 · Unidad documental simple · 24 June 1946
Parte de Pethick-Lawrence Papers

Office of Cabinet Delegation, The Viceroy’s House, New Delhi.—Congress will probably reject the plans for an interim Government, though it is doubtful what they will do about the constituent assembly. The date of his departure is likely to be deferred again. Lady Cripps has been recalled to England because her daughter is ill.

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Transcript

Office of Cabinet Delegation, The Viceroy’s House, New Delhi
June 24. 46

My dearly Beloved.

I have your letter of June 19 {1} before me as I write. It is indeed for both of us a trial of pa-tience. These people talk & deliberate with a sense of all eternity in front of them. Their promise of a decision are postponed from day to day & the chance of a satisfactory one ebbs & ebbs. It is now as certain as anything can be in this uncertain land tht Congress will reject the plans for an interim Governt. What they will do about the Constituent Assembly is at the moment of writing still in doubt. But my hopes are not very high. Some time I will tell you much about it. But people start coming to interview us at 7 AM, & the last doesnt leave much before midnight. And nothing whatever comes of it! And the heat is stifling.

In my last letter to EK I told her tht I expected to be leaving here on Thursday or Friday. But delays & delays & delays make this now unlikely. Nevertheless I still hope to get away within a few days from now. But it may be again a case of hope deferred.

Lady Cripps having been called out here to a sick husband is being recalled to a still more sick daughter. So her case is far far worse than ours. I am terribly sorry for her.

I am glad tht Doty continues to go from triumph to triumph. It is good tht life contains these days of exuberant satisfaction.

I kiss you my beloved. I love you & adore you.

Your very own
Boy.

You may care to see the enclosed from Lord Halifax to whom I wrote about his OM. Keep it among my letters to you.

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The abbreviation ‘tht’ for ‘that’ occurs a few times.

{1} PETH 8/85.

PETH/6/190 · Unidad documental simple · 25 June 1946
Parte de Pethick-Lawrence Papers

Office of Cabinet Delegation, The Viceroy’s House, New Delhi.—Congress has rejected the plan for an interim Government but accepted a long-term plan for constitution-making. They plan to leave on Friday.

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Transcript

Office of Cabinet Delegation, The Viceroy’s House, New Delhi
June 25. 46

My darling.

Congress today turned down the plan for interim Govt but accepted a long-term plan for Constitution Making.

The result though nt as good as at one time seemed possible is a considerable achievement for which I am profoundly thankful.

Our present idea is to start from here on Friday & if tht is adhered to we should be in London on Monday Afternoon July 1. In tht case this will probably be the last letter tht I shall write to you before I start.

If it all works out as I have said, my joy at the prospect of seeing you again is overwhelming.

Kisses & love

From your very own
Boy.

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This letter includes the abbreviated forms ‘tht’ for ‘that’ and ‘nt’ for ‘not’.

PETH/6/212 · Unidad documental simple · 4 Sept 1948
Parte de Pethick-Lawrence Papers

Fourways, Gomshall, Surrey.—Hopes she had a good crossing (of the Channel) and sends his love to Madeleine Doty. The Begum Hamid Ali has been prevented from visiting by a knee injury. Refers to the progress of his autobiography.