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Full text of "LAST LETTERS TO A FRIEND 1952-1958"

Last Letters to a Friend 

is the fascinating and moving account of the intense 
spiritual and intellectual kinship between one of 
England's most distinguished women, novelists and 
an Anglican priest in America, Father Hamilton 
Johnson was Rose Macaulay's mentor in her return 
to the religious faith from which she had been sep 
arated for thirty years. The story of this reunion, so 
brilliantly begun in the first volume of this corre 
spondence, Letters to a Friend, is deepened and en 
riched in this book, which concludes with her death 
in 1958. 

The universal curiosity of this amazing woman and 
her profound learning and thralldom with all aspects 
of literature, .turn her growing knowledge of her 
faith into an intellectual adventure; while her spir 
itual reaffirmation, with reflections on the long years 
of her lapse, is a poignant personal story. Equally 
absorbing is the secular drama of Miss Macaulay's 
life in this period, in which disaster is mingled with 
triumph: on the one hand, for example, the death 
of a beloved sister, fire, burglary, assault, illness, 
disillusionment; on the other, the company of good 
friends, a touching relationship with two young 
nieces, an exciting trip to the Near East, the appre 
ciative reception of several books, and the honor 
of Dameship. 

These remarkable letters, kindled by Dame Rose's 
honesty, warmed by her humility, and lifted by her 
lively wit, form an indispensable part of the legacy 
of a very great lady. 

Jacket design: Janet Halverson 



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63-18060 
63-18060 



J.C AQ 

Macauiay ?> u .^-nfl 
last letters to a friend 

1952-1958 




BOOKS BY 

Rose Macaulay 

LAST LETTERS TO A FRIEND (editor, Constance Babington-Smith) 1963 
LETTERS TO A FRIEND (editor, Constance Babington-Smith) 1962 

THE TOWERS OF TREBIZOND 1957 

FABLED SHORE 1 95 1 
THE WORLD MY WILDERNESS 1950 

AND NO MAN'S WIT 1940 

THE WRITINGS OF E. M. FORSTER 1938 

I WOULD BE PRIVATE 1937 

PERSONAL PLEASURES 1935 

THE MINOR PLEASURES OF LIFE (editor) 1935 

JOHN MILTON 1935 

GOING ABROAD 1934 

THEY WERE DEFEATED (American title, THE SHADOW FLIES) 1932 

CAROLINE 1932 

SOME RELIGIOUS ELEMENTS IN ENGLISH LITERATURE 1 93 1 
STAYING WITH RELATIONS 1930 

DAISY AND DAPHNE 1928 
A CASUAL COMMENTARY (essays) 1926 

CREWE TRAIN 1926 

ORPHAN ISLAND 1925 

TOLD BY AN IDIOT 1924 

MYSTERY AT GENEVA 1923 

DANGEROUS AGES 1 92 1 

POTTERISM 1920 

THREE DAYS (poetry) 1920 

LEE SHORE 1913 
VIEWS AND VAGABONDS 1912 



BOOKS BY 

Constance Babington-Smith 

LAST LETTERS TO A FRIEND (editor) 1963 

LETTERS TO A FRIEND (editor) 1962 

TESTING TIME 1961 

The Story of British Test Pilots and Their Aircraft 

AIR SPY 1957 
The Story of Photo Intelligence in World War II 



Rose Macaulay 



LAST LETTERS TO A FRIEND 
1952-1958 




Rose Mcicaulay in Venice; photographed by RobffBeny in 1957 



Rose Macaulay 

LAST 
LETTERS TO A FRIEND 

1952-1958 

Edited by Constance Babington-Smith 



Atheneum : New York 
1963 



Copyright iptf? by Constance Babington Smith 

All rights reserved 
Library of Congress catalog card number 63-7792 

Printed in the United States of America by 

The Murray Printing Company, Forge Village, Massachusetts 

Bound by H. Wolff, New York 

First American Edition 



Contents 



PREFACE 
page 9 

INTRODUCTION 

page 13 

THE LETTERS 
page 29 

INDEX 

page 2,71 



B31 806O 



Preface 



These letters were written by Dame Rose Macaulay to her 
cousin, the Rev. John Hamilton Cowper Johnson, of the 
Society of St John the Evangelist (commonly known as the 
Cowley Fathers) between 1952 and her death in 1958. They 
are a continuation of the series which has already been published 
in Letters to a Friend. The entire correspondence began in 1950 
when Father Johnson, who had not seen Rose Macaulay since 
he left England for America in 1916, wrote to congratulate her 
on her book They Were Defeated. The letters of the first two 
years, 1950 to 1952, covered the time of her return to the 
Anglican Church, helped by his guidance, after a lapse of thirty 
years: those of the next six show the renewed spiritual vigour 
and the many activities of the final period of her life. 

After Dame Rose's death Father Johnson was anxious that 
the letters he had received from her should be put into safe 
keeping. He believed that if they could be published (after 
careful editing) they would be of help to many. He had met 
me once, through the introduction of Dame Rose, who was 
my third cousin, when I was in America in 1956, and it was 
this personal link which led him to arrange for the letters 
to be dispatched to England early in 1959 and entrusted to 
me. 

No literary executors had been appointed, and the copyright 
of the letters had devolved upon Miss Jean Macaulay, Dame 
Rose's sister the only surviving member of this branch of the 
Macaulay family. Miss Macaulay was therefore consulted, as 
well as others concerned, and it was decided that the letters 



should be prepared for publication without delay. One of the 
main reasons for this was that Dame Rose's religious position, 
in the context of her whole life, had been widely misunder 
stood; her letters to Father Johnson would clarify the situation 
with unique authoritativeness. I was asked to undertake the 
editing, and when I accepted this responsibility Miss Macaulay 
decided to transfer the copyright to me. Since then I have 
frequently discussed the project with her and she has given it 
her whole-hearted approval. She has also recently completed 
the sorting of the many letters from Dame Rose to herself. 
These letters, forming an important record of the loving 
friendship between the two sisters, and showing the variety of 
their common interests, are to be published in a later volume. 

For over a year I corresponded with Father Johnson, and he 
gave me much helpful advice before his health failed, during 
the year preceding his death in March 1961. (His superior, the 
Rev. G. Mercer Williams, S.S.J.E., was kept informed of the 
planning as it progressed.) Throughout this time his enthusiasm 
was a continual encouragement to me, and his belief in my 
abilities a continual surprise. Discussing the editing of the 
letters he wrote: " I think you are the only person in whom 
I should feel confidence for a safe choosing and pruning and 
presenting of them. You knew her real mind, and about the 
extreme seriousness and centrality of her religion, and you 
perfectly understand the nature of the intimacy between her 
and me, what it was, and what it wasn't." 

No question arose of publishing the "other half" of the 
correspondence, namely the replies from Father Johnson, 
because they had been among the vast quantities of private 
letters addressed to Dame Rose which were destroyed a few 
weeks after her death, according to informal written instruc 
tions she had left with her sister as to the disposal of the 
belongings in her flat. Miss Macaulay had promised her sister 
she would carry out these instructions, and with much regret 
she personally burnt all the private letters concerned. Dame 



10 



Rose did not, however, leave instructions of any kind banning 
the publication of letters written by herself. 

The Introduction to this book is intended to give such back 
ground as is needed for an understanding of the letters. A more 
detailed account of Rose Macaulay's life and further bio 
graphical facts concerning Father Johnson have been given in 
the Introduction to Letters to a Friend. A genealogy of Rose 
Macaulay and a diagram showing the family relationship 
between her and Father Johnson are also included in the earlier 
book. 

In editing the letters I have omitted passages which might 
cause embarrassment to living persons; the only other omis 
sions are passages which appear to be unintentionally repetitive. 
In order to distinguish such omissions from ambiguous cases 
where ". . . " appears in the original I have added [sic] in 
these latter instances. As in Letters to a Friend I have identified 
the letters which were air-mailed by the symbol j placed 
alongside the date. 

Some of the original letters are typed but many are hand 
written, and in the deciphering of these I was ably assisted by 
Miss M. F. McKnight. In the hand-written letters there are 
frequent contractions; as in Letters to a Friend I have extended 
most of these, and I have also corrected occasional typing 
errors, apparently unintentional mis-spellings, and punctuation 
which might be misleading. In general, however, I have not 
amended quotations, book titles, etc., where they are written 
incorrectly or in contracted form. 

My deepest debt of gratitude is to Miss Jean Macaulay for 
her warm co-operation, and for the lively interest she has taken 
in every aspect of the work on the letters. I am also greatly 
indebted to several of Dame Rose's friends, and of my own, 
whose understanding and support have counted for more thant 
I can say, and to those members of the Society of St John the 
Evangelist who have repeatedly given me their help and 
encouragement. I am again extremely grateful to Miss 

II 



Dorothea Conybeare, Dame Rose's first cousin, for her 
invaluable advice on matters of family history, as well as to 
Mr A. F. Scholfield, who has helped me in translating the 
Latin quotations, besides advising on many other points, as he 
did in the case of Letters to a Friend. I would also like to thank 
Professor Bruce Dickins for his continued interest, and Dr F. 
J. E. Raby, whom I again consulted about some of the foot 
notes. I discussed quite a number of passages and footnotes 
with Mr Christopher Hollis, and many others with Miss 
Doreen Berry; this was most helpful and I am very grateful to 
both of them. I would also like to express my thanks to all 
those who kindly assisted me in various other editing matters 
(mainly in supplying information for footnotes), especially to 
the following: Mr James Babington Smith, the Rev. Michael 
Dean, the Rt. Rev. S. A. Eley, Mr Eric Gillett, Miss M. E. A. 
Hancock, the Rev. Gerard Irvine, Mr Julian Jebb, Miss Mary 
Barham Johnson, Lord Kinross, Dr R. D. Ladborough, 
Fr Lothian, S.S.F., Mrs Frank C. Paine, Miss Emily Smith, 
and the Rev. Cyril Tomkinson. To Mr T. S. Eliot I am 
indebted for permission to quote from Ash Wednesday and 
I would like to thank Mr RolofF Beny for permission to 
reproduce his photograph of Dame Rose at Venice. 

Constance Babington-Smith 
Cambridge, 1962 



12 



Introduction 



The last years of Rose Macaulay's life were extremely active. 
In March 1955, when she was nearly seventy-four, she 
wrote to her sister Jean, " I have an intuition that I shall die in 
three years, Le. in 1958, so I must bustle about and do a lot of 
things in the time." A month later she was immersed in The 
Towers of Trebizond. Her last novel, with its light-hearted 
blend of satire and fantasy, was entirely characteristic of Rose, 
as she was then and as she had always been. Its serious theme 
the conflict between the torments and the joys of a guilty love 
reflected the tragic secret in her own past (many guessed this 
when they read die book). But its underlying message the 
living hell of not really wanting to journey towards the City 
of God, in spite of an unforgettable longing for it was not 
(as some believed it to be) a representation of her own state of 
mind at the time she wrote it. For by then, thanks in the first 
place to her correspondence with Father Johnson, she had 
already found the way out of her "wilderness" and had attained 
to serenity of heart and spirit. 

In those last six years before her death in 1958 Rose was at 
her gayest. But it was a new kind of gaiety, with roots in 
renewed Christian faith: spiritually she had come home. 
Home to the grace of Divine forgiveness within the Anglican 
Church she had always loved, to a closer intimacy than ever 
before within her own family, to the revivified enjoyment of 
her friendships, her writing, her travels, her reading, her 
multitudinous doings and interests. 

In her earlier letters to Father Johnson those in Letters to a 

13 



Friend Rose told him much about her family and a certain 
amount about her own personal life. The following account 
is therefore given to elucidate various references, some direct 
and some implicit, in the letters which are now published. 

On both sides of Rose's ancestry there were innumerable con 
nections with the Church. Her Macaulay grandfather and 
great-grandfather were both Anglican parsons, and before that 
several of the line had been Presbyterian ministers. On her 
mother's side a great many of the Conybeares, including her 
grandfather, had been parsons, and one of them (in the 
eighteenth century) a Bishop. She was also connected with 
other ecclesiastical clans, notably the Roses, after whom 
she herself was named. It was through the Roses that she and 
Father Johnson were related; a chance mention of the reason 
for her name led to the discovery of their cousinship. Both 
sides of Rose's ancestry also included eminent scholars. Lord 
Macaulay was her grandfather's first cousin, and the Macaulays 
were related to the Trevelyans, while among the Conybeares 
were distinguished scientists, linguists, and writers. The 
tradition of scholarship first touched Rose's life through her 
father George Macaulay. A classic at Eton and Cambridge, he 
later specialised in English studies, and in the course of a steady 
but unspectacular career gained a lasting reputation as a trans 
lator and editor. His logical mind and scholarly thoroughness, as 
well as his gentleness and reticence, were beloved ideals of 
Rose's youth. Temperamentally her mother was a great con 
trast to her father. Grace Conybeare, the lovely younger cousin 
whom George Macaulay had married, was imaginative, 
emotionally volatile, and guided by intuition rather than 
reason. 

For the first nine years of their marriage they lived at 
Rugby, where George Macaulay was an assistant master. Rose 
(or rather Emilie Rose) their second daughter, was born there 
on ist August 1881. Their eldest child Margaret and four 

14 



younger children, Jean, Aulay, Will, and Eleanor, were also 
born while they were at Rugby. Here too began the friend 
ship between the Macaulays and the family of Rupert Brooke; 
his father, like George Macaulay, was a Rugby master. 

When Rose was six years old the family moved to Italy, in 
the interests of her mother's health, and they took a house at 
Varazze on the Ligurian coast. George Macaulay worked at 
translations but could barely scrape a living, so the family had 
to live very simply. The children were taught mostly by their 
parents, but for a short time the three elder girls went to a local 
convent school. Rose's memories of this school were lastingly 
unfavourable. On walks when men were encountered the 
little girls were ordered by the nuns to lower their eyes, the 
"little heretics" were not allowed to pray with the other 
children, and the religious instruction, compared with their 
mother's " Sunday school " teaching, seemed inferior indeed. 
Grace Macaulay was a gifted story-teller; her renderings 
of the Bible stories made an indelible impression, and her 
teaching based on the Collects was equally inspiring. To the 
Macaulay children, however, especially to the eldest five who 
were inseparable, the eight years at Varazze were chiefly 
memorable for the joyful freedom of their outdoor playtime. 
Rose's lifelong passion for bathing dated from the amphibious 
adventures of the Varazze shore. 

The family's next move was back to England in 1894. They 
lived for a time in Oxford, where Margaret, Rose, and Jean 
were sent to the High School. Desperately shy, the Macaulay 
girls made a pact to stick together as much as possible so as to 
avoid painful contacts with strangers. Rose was the prettiest 
of the three as well as the gayest, and a tomboy in her tastes 
and ways. She was not, as a girl, particularly inclined to 
religion; at fourteen she submitted to confirmation merely to 
avoid making a fuss. Then when she was nineteen a mag 
nanimous godfather, her uncle Regi Macaulay, gave her the 
unexpected chance of going to the university. The Macaulays 

15 



were a Cambridge family (Rose was enchanted when later in 
life she was awarded a Cambridge doctorate) but they were 
still living in Oxford, and it was decided she should go to 
Somerville. There she read History and lost her heart to the 
seventeenth century. She also found her feet socially and her 
shyness fell away. The intellectual company at Somerville was 
very congenial, and she missed it greatly when afterwards she 
lived at home near Aberystwyth, where her father was then 
teaching. But she soon found consolation in writing. Ever 
since childhood she had delighted in writing poetry; now she 
also tried her hand at novels; her first, Abbots Verney, was 
published in 1906. Originally it ended unhappily, but Rose's 
publisher demanded "a gleam of light" in the form of an 
engagement, so with set teeth she manufactured one. 

In 1906 Rose's father was appointed to a Lectureship in 
English at Cambridge, and the family moved once more. They 
sctdcd at Great Shelford, within easy reach (by bicycle) of the 
Brookes at Grantchester and the Conybeare cousins in Cam 
bridge. It was while the Macaulays were at Great Shelford, in 
February 1909, that they all received a severe shock which for 
Rose was to have far-reaching repercussions. Her brother 
Aulay, who had joined the Royal Engineers and gone to India, 
was murdered by native thieves on the North-West Frontier. 
For the first time Rose found herself impelled towards religious 
faith and towards the High Church practice in which her 
mother had been brought up. Meanwhile she was being con 
siderably influenced by the brilliant preaching of Father 
Waggett, the Cowley Father, who was then in Cambridge. 
Soon she began making her confessions regularly at the Cowley 
Fathers' House in Westminster. Just before the first war she 
was often in London; already she was being recognised as a 
promising novelist, and to her great delight was meeting some 
of the leading writers of the day. 

It was shortly after this, at the beginning of the first war, 
that Rose came into touch with Father Hamilton Johnson. Her 

16 



confessor, Father Lucius Gary, often had to be absent from 
London, and when he was away Father Johnson deputised for 
him. He was then thirty-seven, having taken holy orders 
ten years previously (following the tradition of his family he 
was one of the Norfolk Johnsons, for generations a well-known 
family of clergy) and had already been a Cowley Father for 
five years. He heard Rose's confessions about half a dozen 
times, and she attended one Retreat conducted by him. Their 
only meetings were these "professional" ones, and the only 
letters they exchanged were notes to arrange appointments. 
Then in November 1916 he was transferred to the Cowley 
Fathers' community in Boston, Massachusetts, and he and Rose 
never met again. 

The year 1917, Rose's thirty-sixth year, was a crucial one for 
her. Before this, though she prized her independence, her 
family had been the axis of her life. But after her father's death 
early in the war she took a job at the War Office and soon 
came to regard London as her home. And in wartime London 
she fell deeply in love with a man who, she later learnt, was 
already married. For some years she struggled to combine their 
friendship with her now habitual religious practice. In the 
early twenties, however, their secret attachment deepened and 
eventually she broke away from the sacramental life of the 
Church. Her attachment became known to her sisters and to 
her mother (who died in 1925) and among her intimate friends 
in London it was tacitly accepted, but otherwise nothing was 
known of it. 

The novels with which Rose is most often identified 
Potterism, Dangerous Ages, Told by an Idiot, Orphan Island, Crewe 
Train, Keeping up Appearances were written during the 
twenties. These gaily satirical novels, in which she skated 
with such zest and finesse over the surface of contemporary life, 
won for her an adoring public and a high place in the literary 
world. Her lightly mocking commentary upon the hypocrisy 
and lack of logic of her fellow-men was delightfully refreshing 

17 



during the years between the wars. Many of her novels were 
also published in America and Father Johnson often read them. 
He specially enjoyed the references to religion that Rose so 
often introduced. 

As Rose reached her fifties her work acquired a new 
maturity and she wrote fewer novels. Some Religious Elements 
in English Literature was followed by They Were Defeated, the 
historical novel of seventeenth-century Cambridge and Devon 
shire which she herself regarded as the best of her books. After 
this came her short life of Milton, her book of essays Personal 
Pleasures, and her study of the writings of E. M. Forster. During 
the second world war and for several years after it, she wrote 
no novels at all. Death and disaster came close to her and 
numbed her. The man she loved fell fatally ill; her sister 
Margaret died a painful death; when her flat was bombed she 
lost most of her library. She herself was ill for a time, then for 
some years suffered periods of acute depression. In sombre 
mood she wrote The World my Wilderness, the book which in 
Father Johnson's view (so he later told me) betrayed her "long 
ing to be back." Still obsessed by the theme of disintegration 
she then buried herself in research for her massive history of 
ruins. At this point, in August 1950, she received the sudden 
letter from Father Johnson, in praise of They Were Defeated, 
which was to spark off their momentous correspondence. 

The earlier part of their exchange of letters, of which Rose's 
side has been published as Letters to a Friend, was the providential 
means towards escape from her spiritual "ruins." It was also 
the beginning of an intimate friendship between two people 
with a remarkable coincidence of tastes. Obscure Latin collects, 
the latest novels and biographies, fine points of semantics, 
intricacies of ecclesiastical history Rose and Father Johnson 
bodi enormously enjoyed discussing topics such as these, as well 
as the doings of their numerous friends and relations (among 
them his cousin John Cowper Powys). Their transatlantic 

18 



dialogue continued steadily, despite illnesses and other contre 
temps, at a rate of about a letter a week in each direction for 
more than two years. And for Rose, along with the light- 
hearted exchange of learning and gossip, went the seeking and 
the finding that was gradually to lead her through the door that 
for thirty years she had not approached. 

By mid-1952, however, she was reaching a new stage of 
spiritual development. She no longer depended upon Father 
Johnson's guidance as she had during the first stage of their 
letter-writing, when he was giving her what he described as 
"the little push back to where she belonged, inside the church 
door, instead of standing in the porch." When they first 
corresponded Father Johnson could hardly keep up with Rose's 
letters and she eagerly awaited his replies; later on she often 
found herself replying to several at once. Nevertheless she 
still attached great importance to his opinions, her gratitude 
for his help was profound and lasting, and their fourth 
cousinship, which they had discovered with such joy early 
in 1952, provided a continuing bond of affection. The 
demands of work and play encroached more and more on 
Rose's letter-writing, but she still loved to keep closely in 
touch with "dear Hamilton," commenting in detail on his 
news and views and regaling him with her own. 

At the time when she was writing the first of the letters in 
this book the Grosvenor Chapel in South Audley Street held 
a central place in Rose's religious life. It was conveniently 
accessible from her flat in Hinde Street, offManchester Square, 
and every morning just before eight-fifteen she sped there in 
her small car. Her attachment to "my chapel," as she called 
it, was heartfelt. The restrained elegance of its architecture and 
the "dignity without fuss" of its liturgy seemed to provide the 
perfect setting for her worship. Rose's devotional life was 
centred on the Eucharist, and she was a daily communicant. 
For her the Feast of Corpus Christi was one of the highlights 
of the Church's year. And in her private devotions the 

19 



recurrent theme was the Divine Light, "the Light that lighteth 
every man." The prayers and texts some in Latin, some in 
English which she inscribed in her Preces Privatae echoed this 
again and again. O Sapientia, the Advent invocation to the 
Holy Wisdom that illumines both mind and heart, was one of 
her constant favourites. 

Just as regular and as unobtrusive as her daily worship were her 
weekly visits to her sister Jean at Romford. One afternoon and 
evening every week Rose kept jealously free from engagements 
so that she could be with her "darling twin" (they had been 
born within a year). Jean was the only person in the world 
with whom Rose, in her seventies, could share mutual 
memories of the Macaulay family life. After their sister 
Eleanor, who was a missionary, died in India in 1952, they were 
the only ones left out of the family of seven. And there was 
no younger generation at all not one of the brothers or sisters 
had married. Both their parents had been dead for many years, 
and their uncles and aunts were all dead too, except for one, 
Mary Macaulay, who in her old age was sadly incapable. 

Rose's return to the Church, which "Jeanie" had never left, 
brought the sisters very closely together. During the time of 
Rose's estrangement they were never entirely at one. They had 
always corresponded, however, and met as often as possible, 
though Jean's work as a nurse had tended to cut her off from 
the family. She was one of the pioneers of District Nursing, 
and was awarded the M.B.E. for her fine record when she 
retired. Jean's last nursing appointment brought her to 
Romford in 1939. After her retirement in 1956 she stayed on 
there, sharing a small house with her lifelong friend Nancy 
Willetts, also a District Nurse. The three of them spent several 
holidays together on the Isle of Wight, and Rose made a great 
point of being with them for Christmas. 

Even after Jean settled at Romford, and Rose was seeing her 
every week, they were continually exchanging letters. Like 



20 



many of the Conybeare family they both doted on lively 
debates, particularly on questions of moral theology; they also 
relished discussions about books, broadcasts, friends, and family 
matters, as well as the general news of the day. Another 
interest they shared was in the practices of the various Christian 
churches and sects. Rose was an enthusiast for inter 
communion, and although the austerity of Nonconformist 
places of worship did not appeal to her, she made a point, on 
principle, of attending their services occasionally as a com 
municant. Until her death, however, she clung stubbornly to 
her prejudices against Roman Catholicism. 

In September 1952, when the earliest letters in this book 
were written, Rose was suffering from persistent attacks of 
undulant fever and at the same time striving to finish her book 
Pleasure of Ruins. Her health was remarkably good for her age 
but it was a worry to her sister, as well as to her friends, that she 
lived alone and insisted on "looking after herself." During 
serious illnesses such as the undulant fever, Jean and Nancy 
Willetts used to come up every day in turn from Romford to 
look after her. This is never mentioned or even hinted at in the 
letters to Father Johnson, and Jean comments that Rose 
cherished the illusion that she could look after herself when ill. 
Another such illusion well known to many of her friends 
was that she was a good driver, and that people were not 
nervous when she gave them lifts in her "darling car." 

By the spring of 1953 she had delivered her manuscript, 
thrown off her illness, and was enjoying a blissful holiday in 
Cyprus, Syria, and Israel. The following summer too she 
went abroad, to Turkey the trip that foreshadowed The 
Towers of Trebizond. That summer of 1954 was also the time 
when there came a new development in her church-going. 
She had always been attracted by good preaching, even during 
the time of her thirty-year lapse, and it was pardy because she 
had heard warmly favourable reports of the preaching at St 

21 



Paul's, Knightsbridge, where Jock Henderson was vicar, that 
she started going there occasionally. Gradually she became 
more and more fond of St Paul's "it is beautiful, rather dark, 
very ungarish" and towards the end of her life she divided 
her regular attendance almost equally between Knightsbridge 
and Grosvenor Chapel. (My own "religious companionship" 
with Rose, as Father Johnson called it, began when we dis 
covered that we were both in the habit of attending St Paul's. 
Thereafter we often went there together, and also to Grosvenor 
Chapel. Although she and I were cousins we had never got 
to know one another before this.) 

For some time the cpanouissement of Rose's inner life had 
been bringing her to share her faith with others. She began, 
for example, to think seriously about her responsibilities as a 
godmother, and this led her to start taking one of her god 
daughters to children's services at St Mary Abbots; she also 
corresponded regularly with another god-daughter in America. 
She loved the company of Anglicans of her own "high but 
broad" persuasion, and each autumn during her final years she 
attended a Retreat at Pleshey in Essex. She also enjoyed the 
personal friendship of quite a number of clergy. And one of 
the companionships she valued most was with Susan Lister, 
a fellow-worshipper at Grosvenor Chapel, to whom she 
dedicated The Towers of Trebizond. 

The publication of The Towers ofTrebizotiJ Dominated 1956. 
Beforehand she wrote to Father Johnson to prepare him for 
some of her jokes about the Church; but Father Johnson was 
not at all shocked, at least not by the jokes. The thing that did 
shock him, later on, was the way in which some people missed 
the point of the book. " Oh yes, The Towers has been greatly 
misunderstood," he wrote to me after Rose's death. " The 
amusing beginning about Fr Chantry-Pigg and his church, 
which is only a clever and good-natured caricature of a state 
of affairs which we all deplore but are unable to cure, is thought 
to be a repudiation of all that Rose actually held most dear. 

22 



And then the Reviewer in The Times Lit. Sup. (of all papers!) 
writes of: 'on the one hand a cheerful and courageous accept 
ance of life's possibilities as well as its problems, and on the 
other a deep, often moving, and apparently ineradicable 
spiritual anguish' ! Why the whole book is to show that it is 
not ineradicable, but that it is eradicable only by those 'who 
desire to enter that strange bright city on the hill more 
strongly than they desire all other cities/ Do the people who 
are amused by Fr Hugh Chantry-Pigg and think him merely 
absurd, do they think he was absurd, or that Rose meant him 
to be thought absurd, in Chapter 7, when he spoke the word 
of God to Laurie on that Whit Sunday morning on the Black 
Sea?" 

But even if The Toivers was misunderstood it was an 
extremely successful book, both in England and in America. 
It brought Rose the best press she had ever had, as well as some 
touching private appreciations which moved her profoundly. 
When she showed these tributes to her sister she told her that 
never in her life had she been so happy. It was Rose's greatest 
desire to help others by means of her own most poignant 
experience. 

The last of the letters to Father Johnson was written on 
I2th June 1958. Rose had not written to him for more than 
six months and had much to tell him. In February she had gone 
to Buckingham Palace to be "darned" (in the New Year's 
Honours list she had been created a Dame Commander of the 
British Empire) but she was far from well at the time so she 
went afterwards to Dorset to convalesce. After her return she 
had a fall and broke a hip and a wrist, and was in hospital for 
six weeks. Now she was back at home desperately trying to 
catch up and planning to go on a cruise to the Black Sea in 
August. 

Venice, the Greek Islands, Istanbul, her dear Trebizond. . . 
In October she was in London again with her usual busy round. 

23 



She was looking forward to the peace of a Retreat at Pleshey 
in November. The opening chapter of her new novel was on 
paper : Venice, the city she loved perhaps more than any other, 
was to be the setting for part of her story. She was toying with 
ideas for a tide: Venice Besieged, perhaps, or Venice Regained. 
During the last week of October an attack of bronchitis began 
to give her trouble and her doctor advised her to stay in bed 
for a couple of days. She stayed in bed for one day, then was 
up and about once more, shopping and party-going and writing 
letters. On the morning of 3Oth October there was a sudden 
relapse and she suffered a coronary thrombosis. Death came 
with merciful swiftness. 

A week later, at a Requiem Mass at Grosvenor Chapel, 
George Herbert's soaring hymn of praise was sung. 

King of Glory, King of Peace, 

I will love thee; 
And that love may never cease 

I will move thee. 

Thou hast granted my request 

Thou hast heard me; 
Thou didst note my working breast 

Thou hast spared me. 

Wherefore with my utmost art 

I will sing thee 
And the cream of all my heart, 

I will bring thee. 

Though my sins against me cried, 

Thou didst clear me; 
And alone, when they replied, 

Thou didst hear me. 



24 



Seven whole days, not one in seven, 

I will praise thee; 
In my heart, though not in heaven 

I can raise thee. 

Small it is, in this poor sort, 

To enrol thee; 
E'en eternity's too short 

To extol thee. 

The poetry of Rose Macaulay's beloved seventeenth 
century provided for her a fitting epitaph. 

Constance Babington-Smith 



1952 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.I 
i6th September, 1952! 

My dear Hamilton, 

Thank you for two air papers (posted 8th and nth), one 
of which I got just before going off [to Oxford] ... on 
Thursday, the other last night on my return. ... I drove home 
yesterday by devious ways, through the lovely Oxfordshire 
country Godstow, Witham, Hinksey, Abingdon, Dor 
chester, Warborough where I called on my old cousin W. 
J. Conybeare and his delightful wife. James had my fever some 
years ago, and lay in bed for six months, and for some 2 years 
afterwards had these come-backs that I get. 1 However, he is 
now quite over it; and digs gaily in his garden, in corduroy 
trousers, at the age of nearly 80. He was Provost of Southwell 
but now only does some helping in the churches round 
Warborough. He said he brought my sister Eleanor into a 
sermon the other day I think he preached about lives of 
devoted service. 2 

I read in the C[hurch] Times about your great Convention. 8 
It sounds most impressive. I'm glad too much burden and toil 
doesn't fall on you from your guests. 

1 am glad Letters to a Layman is to have a new edition. 4 I 
expect The Words of the Missal will come my way in Duckett's 
good time; I hope so. 5 It mmt be an illuminating companion 

1 R. M. had been suffering from recurrent attacks of undulant fever. 

2 Eleanor Macaulay, who died on yth August, 1952, had been a missionary 
in India. 

3 A General Convention of the Episcopal Church in America. 
4 Dom Gregory Dix, The Question of Anglican Orders (1944); usually 

known by the sub-title Letters to a Layman. 

5 R.M. had ordered C. C. Martindale's The Words of the Missal (1932) 
from the bookseller Duckett. 

29 



to the Missal. I looked up that Paschal Prophecy you quoted. 
What a service that must be! I must go to it (All Saints', 
I think) next Easter. With only one priest, such affairs are 
beyond the scope of Grosvenor. 1 The Exultet, sung round the 
candle, must be very splendid, 2 "Ut qui me, non meis mentis, 
intra Levitarum numerum dignatus est aggregate; luminis sui 
claritatem infundens. . . ." 3 I wonder why a candle is so much 
better than an electric light, for religious purposes. Old 
association, no doubt. 

The Church in the Markets I am noting that to read. 4 And 
the Holy Week Book. What a lot of good literature you point 
out to me; books, and bits of Breviary and Missal. I am now, 
I hope, about to get from the library Evelyn Waugh's Men at 
Arms, and Harold Nicolsons George Vl expect both have 
already been published over your side of the trough. How do 
you get on with Noughts and Crosses by the way? 5 . . . 

"Justification by Faith "I have never grasped it. What 
can they mean? [Justification] by Works one can understand 
(see St James). 6 But what a lot the other has meant to people 
ever since Augustine! My sister's Requiem Mass is on Thurs 
day. I shall of course go to it, well or not so well. But I shall 

be well. 

Much love, 

R.M. 



1 Although the Grosvenor Chapel in South Audley Street was R. M.'s 
regular place of worship, she liked to go to All Saints', Margaret Street, 
on certain feast days. 

2 In the Western liturgy the Exultet or " Paschal Praise " is sung at the 
blessing of the Paschal Candle on Holy Saturday. 

3 ". . . infundens (cerei hujus laudem implere perfidat)" "That he, who 
hath been pleased, for no merit of mine, to admit me into the number of 
his Levites, may pour on me the brightness of his light, and make me meet 
to proclaim the praises of this candle." 

*B. Ifor Evans, The Church in the Markets (1948). 

6 J. Hichens, Noughts and Crosses (1952). 

8 James 2. 14-26. 

30 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
2$th September, 1952! 

My dear Hamilton, 

Your letter posted 22nd followed quickly your apr] pfaper] 
of 20th; one came yesterday, the other to-day. What a lot of 
interesting things in both (the 2nd particularly rich in them). 
Too many to answer in an a.p., though it is less than moral of 
me to write a longer letter, pressed about as I am with work 
not done still, for once I will fall. When I wrote to you last, 
I was in undulationibus', that was Tuesday. By Thursday 
morning (thank you for remembering the day) I was able 
to go to Tufton St. for the Requiem Mass. 1 I was very glad, 
for it was a v.g. service, and after it we had breakfast, and 
I talked to several people who knew Eleanor in India, includ 
ing an extremely pleasant Father Davey 2 , who was a great 
friend of hers. It was all very consoling and good. I wish the 
Bp of Chota Nagpur 3 could have been there; but I shall 
see him before long. 

Translated prayers oh yes, they are not satisfactory, on the 
whole. Of course English can't be so brief, being an uninflected 
language and requiring therefore so many prepositions, besides 
all the the's and as (though this does prevent the confusion one 
sometimes finds in one's understanding of Latin, between the 
and a) and other words. That prayer "Adjuva [nos Deus salutaris 
noster]," in 17 words. In English I can't do it (can you ?) in less 
than 24 [sic]: " Help us, God of our Salvation, and let us come 
rejoicing to the recolenda (reflection ?? consideration?) of the 
kindnesses by which thou hast deigned to redeem us." 4 But 

1 The service for R. M/s sister Eleanor was held in the chapel of the 
Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Tufton Street, Westminster. 
Eleanor Macaulay had worked as a missionary for the S.P.G. 

2 Rev. L. W. Davey. 

3 Rt Rev. G. N. L. Hall (1891-1962). 

4 See the Roman Missal, Oratio super populum (" Prayer over the 
people"), post-communion prayer for Monday in Holy Week. 

31 



that "praises of this column" is awful ! I like your interpretation 
or could one translate novimus "renew " ? " Now we renew 
the proclaiming (setting forth) of this column, which that 
shining fire lights to the honour of God/' 1 I have now trans- 
scribed the prayer "ut qui me . . . intra Viatorum numerum . . ." 2 
Yes, that Jewish-Christian continuity is a wonderful thought. 
So, though more obscurely, is the non-Jewish and Christian 
continuity the Lux Vera quae illuminat omnem hominem 
venientem in hunc mundum? The Covenant there is with the 
spirit and conscience of man, that it shan't be left in darkness 
ever, and that the light of reason shall lead it. The progressive 
lighting of conscience; as you say, we shall be given the desire 
and will and power to follow it, and how much better that 
is than living by rules handed out. (By the way, you say " if 
they can't afford children, I know what they ought to do, and 
if they ask me I can tell them." What should they do ? Birth 
control, or abstain from intercourse but this would be no real 
marriage and could come to no good, I suppose or just have 
the children and trust to God to see to them ? What would you 
advise them, if they asked you?) This leads to Noughts and 
Crosses. I'm so glad you like it. You ask about the author. 
She is about 35 now, I think; a very nice, gay, bright young 
woman; nether own heroine, she says ... I liked her outbreak 
against the un-Christianity of refusing to join with other 
Christians in worship; I always feel that myself. . . If I was 
reviewing the book, I would say it was amusing, full of real 
people, poses a problem clearly and solves it well. I think it 
was rather well reviewed (tho' I am sure not in the Tablet]). 
The dialogue is very true to life, I think. Yes, I'm sure the 
social relationships of men and women have changed a lot. Not 

1 " This column " means the Paschal Candle (see above p. son), and the 
context is quoted from the Exultet: " Sed jam columnae hujus praeconia 
novimus, quam in honorem Dei rutilans ignis accendit." 

2 " Since thou (hast admitted) me into the number of Travellers." 

3 " The true light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the 
world." John i. 9. 

32 



that I and my sisters didn't go about quite freely with young 
men on walking tours, bicycling, bathing together, days out, 
games (hockey and tennis), river, etc., etc. (I think Norfolk 
must have been more sparsely peopled with young people than 
the University towns I resided in.) Yes, we certainly did go 
about together; and stayed with our young men friends in 
their homes, and went expeditions alone with them, or with 
other friends. (For that matter I believe my mother did this 
too, though less). But there is probably more of it now. You 
must find that your younger American friends do it all the 
time. And "neck" too, and "pet", as they call it. Oh what 
social joys ! I used to go bathing at Grantchester with Rupert 
Brooke (a family friend from our childhoods). So, I mean, 
friendships and outings with young men were common form. 
What has increased out of all knowledge is the further inti 
macies, which we (in my generation and class) never even 
conceived of, so far as I know. We should have thought such 
a notion excessively "low". There is a refreshing absence of 
these in this novel. . . . The author was at Downe [House] 
school (of which I knew many ex-pupils) and (I believe) 
Oxford (L. M. H.) 1 . She occasionally turns up at the Grosvenor 
[Chapel], though she lives outside London. 

Sept. 26th. Good news from Duckett this morning they have 
got me The Words of the Missal, which I narrowly missed before. 
A second-hand copy, 5/-. I will collect it this afternoon. I 
looked up the prayers you mentioned in The Mind* . . . [sic] 
but haven't so far identified our Prayer for the whole Church, 
which the American P. jB. (Shepherd) 3 says Cranmer " newly 
composed," though " the sequence of the petitions follows the 
traditional pattern of the intercessions in the Daily Offices, the 
Bidding Prayer, and the Litany." 

1 Somerville College, not Lady Margaret Hall. 

2 C. C. Martindale, The Mind of the Missal (1929). 

3 Massey H. Shepherd, Jr., The Oxfor d American Prayer Book Commentary 
(2nd printing, 1951). 

33 



But everywhere one finds in the P.B. echoes of older 
prayers, which is partly what makes the liturgical prayers so 
fascinating to read. . . . 

How very disingenuous the R.C. church is about many 
things, including St Mary Magdalene. I see that it was Gregory 
the Great who first confused her with (a) the woman who was 
a sinner (b) Mary of Bethany: the Greek Fathers, and every 
good modern commentary, including Gore's, 1 say there is no 
evidence whatever for identification and all the internal 
evidence seems against it but the Latin Fathers (guided by 
Gregory the Great) came along and confused all three women, 
and now they are hopelessly entangled in Church commemora 
tions, and the Catholic Encyclopaedia upholds this (it has to) 
and says how "probable" it is. But how improbable that the 
people at supper at Bethany would have said "Can he know 
what kind of woman it is that is anointing his feet? " if it was 
the well-known Bethany Mary, a friend of Our Lord's, and 
highly respected in the town what nonsense. As to Mary of 
Magdala, all she had, so far as we know, was "seven devils," 
probably fits of some kind and infirmities, of which she was 
healed. However, I suppose now that she has for over 1,000 
years been the great type of penitence, she will never be 
extricated; all the Homes for Fallen Women would have to 
be re-named. 

I have now been to Duckett and got my Words oj 
Missal, which I am delighted to have. By the way, thank you 
so much for those magazines (packet androU) most interesting. 
Too interesting actually, as if I am tempted to read more than 
a little of them yet, I shall be completely sunk. I wish you 
knew how deplorable is my state, how minus my time, and 
how I could do with a 48-hour day, and still not get done. 
And soon those tiresome BBC "Critics," on which I am for 6 

*A New Commentary on Holy Scripture, edited by C. Gore, H. L. 
Goudge and A. Guillaume (1928). 

34 



weeks, will start; I promised to join them in the summer, 
when I thought my book 1 would be finished before now. And 
lo, it is far from finished, and how much time I do waste. 
Or a pro me. I need it. And now (7.30 p.m.) must set to work, 
leaving you my love and thanks. Have you read Simone 
Weil? She is good. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.I 
6th October, 1952 j 

My dear Hamilton, 

To hand, your splendid long letter of Sept. 27-9, and (to 
day) air paper, also splendid but less long, of 30th. The 
trouble is, they inspire so much to say, but there is no time for 
more than an a,p., so I will do what I can in that. I am 
interested in what you say about the place of Rfoman] 
C[atholic]ism in your parts. I suppose it is because of the great 
number of immigrants, Irish and European. Someone (I think 
Archbp Mathew) was saying to me the other day that the 
Church in [the] U.S. had suffered detriment, he thought, from 
the great infusion of Irish, with their rather puritanical and 
philistine version of the faith (we were both comparing the 
present Irish Church with its glorious early past). All the same, 
these American R.C. magazines do seem excellent; Common 
weal in particular. I found a lot that interested me in those you 
sent. I am also reading with much interest The Words of 
the Missal ... I have looked up his transflation] of 
veneranda commercia (pp. 82 and 133) but can't think why he 
has to say "transaction" (or you "commercial transactions*') 
for what I should have thought better translated as "inter 
course," or "commerce" in its old sense (now not quite 
1 R. M/s Pleasure of Ruins. 

35 



obsolete, surely?) of intercourse or converse. 1 In the i6th, 
lyth, and even i8th centuries, it was very common, and 
often used for converse with heaven. "The commerce 
between God and us" (Hooker). "A commerce of letters", 
"the commerce of wits", "in commerce with the muses", 
and, in the Penseroso, " With looks commercing with the 
skies, Thy rapt soul sitting in thine eyes", etc., etc. Looking 
up commerdum in Cassell, I see it does give "intercourse" as one 
meaning. "Commerce" in English also had a special meaning 
of intercourse between the sexes. But very commonly with 
God, or the saints. So why not translate the collect, "God, who 
by the honourable" (see Te Deum for this use of it) 2 "commerce 
of this sacrifice dost make us partakers", etc. Wouldn't this do ? 
I like it better than bringing in the idea of barter, tho' of course 
it could mean that, and it is a kind of barter "here we offer 
and present", etc. Well, I don't know. If one calls it "com 
merce" it can bear either sense, according to one's feeling at 
the moment. Yes, I suppose Coleridge's phrase "partaker of" 
would shock the Evangelicals of his day, and Lamb, who was a 
Unitarian, too. 3 Also he [Lamb] disliked mysticism, and 
thought C. quite too off the earth. He [Coleridge] was a rather 
sublime preacher; he preached so well and so mystically that 
people couldn't afterwards quote anything he had said, but just 
had felt transported into heaven, commercing with the skies. 
I have got the Revised Standard Bible (American), just pub 
lished here. It seems very good, and wanted doing. I've only 
looked up a few bits so far. I see it puts " Behold a young 
woman " instead of " virgin " (Isaiah) which is accurate, isn't 

1 See The Words of the Missal, p. 82: "O God . . . who through the most 
worshipful transaction of this Sacrifice has caused 'us to be participators in 
one supreme Divinity . . ." (Secreta for 4th Sunday after Easter). 

2 " Thine honourable, true, and only Son/* 

3 In 1796 Coleridge wrote to Lamb, in a letter of condolence: " You 
are a temporary sharer in human misery, that you may be an eternal 
partaker of the Divine nature." See E. K. Chambers' Samuel Taylor 
Coleridge (1938). 

3<5 



it? The word is amala, I think. 1 I am also reading a small 
book on the Fathers of the Western Church 2 . . . which 
gives very lively pictures of them. How very disagreeable 
Jerome was ! As Milman wrote, he had "an almost unrivalled 
faculty of awakening hatred". 3 And how he hated marriage, 
and the continuance (therefore) of the human race. What you 
say about marriage interests me. I am sure you are right that 
celibacy need be no hardship; abstinence within marriage is 
different, of course. Take a couple who had had already (say) 
three or four children, and felt they could not rightly afford 
more; they might be still quite young, and to ask them not 
to live together normally would be asking a frustration (any 
how to the man; women do feel differently about it, I think) 
which might starve and poison their relations together. That 
act of love eases intercourse, heals quarrels, fulfils affection; I 
don't think it should be given up except for some very weighty 
reason. Of course there are the so-called "safe" periods; but 
they are not really safe. If they are not to exercise some kind 
of birth control, they will either be swamped with children (too 
many) or starved of normal marriage. I can never quite see 
why birth control is wrong, as the Catholic church holds it to 
be. On C. S. Lewis's "other planet" married abstinence is all 
right because the people are less sense-bound (I haven't read 
that book, 4 but shall) but here, as human nature is ... [sic] 
However, I do agree that many people have gone to the other 
extreme in their theories about the huge part sex must play in 
life. The psycho-analysts have encouraged this, unfortunately, 
and it needed no encouragement. I feel sure that anything you 
said to people consulting you would help them to a sane view 
of it all, and to a higher view of what they could achieve, 
whatever they decided to do. You see, you would be learned 

1 Hebrew 'almah (a marriageable young woman). See Isa. 7. 14. 

2 Robert Payne, The Fathers of the Western Church (1952). 

3 See H. H. Milman's History of Christianity from the Birth of Christ to 
the Abolition of Paganism in the Roman Empire (1840), Vol. in. 

4 C. S. Lewis, Out of the Silent Planet (1938). 

37 



and witty; and without any assistance from any Doctor of 
Letters. Of course that Prior found you so, and I'm glad he 
appreciated it. To escape from the bedlam of prelates and find 
you to talk to would indeed be refreshing. Talking of prelates, 
the Bishop of Chota Nagpur came to tea the other day; he 
was my sister's bishop in Ranchi, and very fond of her. I like 
him very much; a spare, lean, perambulating bishop, covering 
vast miles of diocese on foot, and very enthusiastic. We dis 
cussed the expenditure of the legacy she left me, which I am 
giving to the mission, as they are badly in need of funds. 
Eleanor will be terribly missed there; they all valued her so 
much, and loved her. After reading all the letters about her, I 
feel she was far more than we knew, tho' we knew she was 
doing admirable work. 

That verb seems to be undo ; hodie non undo* nor yesterday, 
nor, I hope, to-morrow. If I only do it for a day or two about 
once a month, I shan't complain; and it should get less as the 
months go by. The last time was 5 days ago, when I had to 
cancel a lunch, but was able to receive Archbp Mathew for 
tea. Sometimes it makes me very sick; sometimes only 
feverish. And always quite stupid. A queer illness. 

Vakdico, and much love, 
R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
12th October, 1952! 

My dear Hamilton, 

Thank you so much for a[ir] p[aper] posted Oct. 5th. 
To pursue the subject of Mary Magdalene, what Gore's 
Commentary says is " In no case is there the least ground for 
accepting Gregory the Great's identification of the woman who 
was a sinner, or Mary of Bethany, with Mary of Magdala. 
1 " To-day I do not undulate," i.e. suffer from undulant fever. 

38 



Plainly Luke does not identify them. They appear to be three 
distinct women. Gregory's view has been rejected by many 
later R.C. scholars, especially in France". St John, of course, 
relates how Mary of Bethany anointed Our Lord at supper, 
and how the disciples said the money should have been given 
to the poor instead of wasting precious ointment like that. 
It was, apparently, a common Eastern greeting. When the 
woman of the town who was a sinner did it they said "if this 
man were a prophet he would know what kind of woman is 
touching him" 1 surely an impossible remark if the woman had 
been Mary of Bethany, already known to be, with her brother 
and sister, a friend of His, and no doubt known to everyone 
in Bethany. There really seems no identification of the sinning 
woman with either Mary. Gregory the Great was, it seems, 
the first to identify them, and the Church adopted the theory 
and has held it since (the Roman Church, I mean). What Fr 
Williams 2 said about Protestant criticism of it is in the Catholic 
Encyclopaedia, which is obviously trying to make a case for 
the tradition, and I think makes a very weak one, since the 
rejection of the theory is purely on the evidence in the Gospels, 
and I am sure has nothing to do with any Protestant angle on 
sin. I think Protestants would prefer Gregory's idea, it is more 
interesting than having just an anonymous woman as a type of 
the forgiven sinner. After all, they dropped out many other 
saints from the 1552 Pjrayer] B[ook] too. I have seen the 
identification denied in all commentaries I have come across, 
except the R.C. Encyclopaedia], and I dare say even that may 
climb down presently, in fresh editions, for that Church does 
seem to be becoming a little more scholarly and critical in its 
approach. I see that St John doesn't relate the story about the 
woman who was a sinner at all, only that of Mary of Bethany 
and the spikenard. R. A. K[nox] in his notes makes no 
identifying comment. 3 

1 John 12. 3-8. 2 Rev. G. Mercer Williams, S.S.J.E. 

3 R. A. Knox, The New Testament: A New Translation (1945). 

39 



. I am in bed this morning with what feels more like a 
feverish cold than U[ndulant] F[ever], so will finish this in my 
best copperplate. Apropos "partakers in the Divine Nature" 
(which so shocked Lamb) it is the chief thesis in William Law's 
spiritual writings. You know how much I get from him, and 
it occurs to me to send you the Pocket edition 1 , which I possess 
as well as a larger and fuller one. 2 Of course there is some skip, 
and some views we no longer hold; but most of it is excellent 
and inspiring stuff, and especially when he gets on to God's 
nature in us, growing like a seed, our only cause of response to 
God outside us. Lamb should have read it. Anyhow, if I can 
get a copy I will send it you. And for myself I will order from 
the library C. S. Lewis and Karl Stern. 3 ... I have . . . lent 
[a friend of mine] ... a delightful book I have been reviewing, 
Period Piece: A Cambridge Childhood, by Gwen Raverat, who 
was a Darwin. It is really charming : so are her illustrations to 
it. Do get it if you can, when it is out in your parts. The Dar- 
wins are the salt of the earth. She is very funny about them, 
and about those who have "inadvertently married Darwins." 
The drawings are charming. I think her American mother was 
rather behind the times as regards children's clothes and up 
bringing. There were much more comfortable fashions than 
those which Gwen and her sister had to endure. Mrs Darwin 
didn't share the usual Cambridge dowdiness and indifference 
about clothes. We were dressed comfortably both as children 
and grown-up girls, as were most girls I knew. Also, they had 
governesses, whereas most Cambridge children went to the 
Perse School; my Conybeare cousins 4 did. We, of course, were 
not living in Cambridge till later. 

... [A Roman Catholic friend] ... to whom I gave 
Noughts and Crosses writes "a very natural account of the 

1 The Pocket William Law, edited by A, W. Hopkinson 1950. 

2 Selected Mystical Writings of William Law, edited by S. Hobhouse (1938). 

3 Probably Karl Stern s The Pillar of Fire (1951). 

4 Alison and Dorothea Conybeare. 

40 



reactions of someone who approaches the Church prematurely, 
and not for the primary reason/' I suppose the primary reason 
is that one believes it to be God's wish that everyone should 
join it, and that He deplores all the other churches. A strange 
point of view, but no doubt it obtains . . . 

Much love and no more room, 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde Street, W.i 

24th October, I952f 
Feast of Raphael & Tobias & his Dog 

My dear Hamilton, 

I am ashamed to say that I have three air papers from you 
since I wrote last; the fact is that I have been, and am, almost 
too busy to do anything. What with the BBC Critics (which 
entails seeing a play, a film, an art exhibition, read a book, and 
hear a radio programme each week, besides actual recording, 
which takes a whole afternoon), and what with having to do 
two longish reviews (one is of Dr Joad's new book, The 
Recovery of Faith* the other Period Piece . . .) and what with 
Ruins . . . [sic] I might add, what with a bad cold, which 
I had when last I wrote, and still have a little, but nearly 
well now. Yes, I much liked The Man on a Donkey, which 
I read when I was ill in the summer; an excellent bed book 
except physically; it is heavy to hold. I liked the early part 
best; I, and others, found it dragged a little later on. I 
think it is a great achievement, that huge canvas and 
sweep, and the characters emerge very vividly, and the period. 2 
She doesn't, of course, attempt the language; but manages 

1 C. E. M. Joad, The Recovery of Belief: a Restatement of Christian 
Philosophy (1952). 

2 H. F. M. Prescott's The Man on a Donkey (1952) is a long historical 
novel of i6th century England, in the form of a chronicle, which tells the 
story of the Pilgrimage of Grace. 

41 



without being aggressively modern; one just doesn't notice 
the speech, only its content. I wonder what you will think of 
the Pilgrimage of Grace, later on. She is a very able Oxford 
woman (Lady Margaret Hall) of, I suppose, about 50, and 
has written other novels, but this is the best. What a work it 
must have been! She is not R.C., by the way. I like what 
you say about "the primary reason." Of course it is true. The 
Ch[urch] Times printed today the first chapter of Why I am not 
a Rom[an] Cath[olic], by Fr Ross of All Saints'. It is an interesting 
piece; I expect you see the Ch[urch] T[imes], and will possibly 
see the book except that America is sometimes frightened of 
publishing anything their Romans might not like. He is very 
courteous; but says " We have so long been a target for R.C. 
abuse . . ." He seemed to me to put it very lucidly and firmly. 
I shall read the book when it appears. Dr Joad's book is 
interesting, though the philosophical parts are rather stiff going 
they will use such jargon. But mostly it is lucid; he relates 
the intellectual reasons which have led him to the Church, 
from a life of almost militant anti-religion, as well as of a 
good deal of moral error. Poor man, I am afraid he is 
dying, within the year, of cancer. He chose the C. of E. rather 
than the R.C. because he liked it; he likes the country churches, 
the liturgy, the tolerance, the beauty. Yes ; how much nicer 
we are than they are. I agree with Sir Leoline Jenkins about 
that. 1 Anyhow, I imagine Dr Joad has too rational a mind to 
swallow the R.C. myths; though he says he thinks that our 
greater modernity of outlook probably loses us some popularity 
compared with Rome; I wonder if he is right. I think he 
meant among rather simple people, who like to be told firmly 
what to think, and don't mind its being improbable. Oh how 
good our Church is ! I love it more and more, as I get more 

1 Sir Leoline Jenkins (1623-1685), High Church lawyer, wrote of the 
Anglican liturgy, " Neither Rome nor Muscovy . . . have anything in the 
public services that can enter into comparison with it." See Letters to a 
Friend, p. 249. 

42 



deeply dug in well in, as you say. And being free to use any 
prayers from any other Pfrayer] B[ook] when we like; the 
R.C.s can't do that, poor things. We can honour the venerandum 
commerdum in two languages. 1 I like these brief prayers you 
insert into your letters. You seem to have been so clever about 
binding that poetry of mine, that I don't in the least understand, 
for all your detailed account, what you have done. It does 
sound good a convex ball! I feel you forve missed your 
vocation, and should have been a professional binder; I keep 
wanting books re-bound, and can never get them done. It is 
really medieval, isn't it, for Religious to practise handicrafts. 
All the self-bound booklets you have sent me are admirable, and 
very charming. At Mass this morning was Noel Chota 
Nagpur, celebrating. . . . After Mass, when [I] left, he followed 
me to the church door and wished me goodbye, for he sails for 
India again next week. I am glad to have seen him. I have 
handed over Eleanor's legacy to me to the Ranchi mission, for 
their hospital, schools, and whatever other needs they like. 
They need money badly. They have offered to name a bed 
after her in the hospital, with an inscription in Hindi and 
English. She would have liked that. I apologise to many 
million Americans for calling them "immigrants**, but I 
suppose they were. Many of them have families in Italy 
(especially Sicily) to whom they return; and the Irish still talk 
of "the ould country". As you say, we arc all immigrants ; but 
those of Norman blood have been here 900 years, which is 
enough to dig themselves well in. We Macaulays are im 
migrants from Denmark (Olaf, who came over to the Scotch 
islands about 900), the Oliviers (who married into Conybeares) 
were French Huguenot refugees, like your Livii. So far as I 
know, the Roses and the Conybeares were indigenous. Yes, 
I know the " Micks " police the U.S. cities; and I fear also 
have made politics the corrupt business they are. I like the 
Irish, but they are certainly rather immoral. The Irish quarter 
x See above p. 35. 
43 



of Liverpool is a criminal byword; so are the Glasgow 
Irish. ... I shall certainly get hold of that Planet book in the 
end. 1 Also of the Pocket Law for you, as I'd like to know what 
you think of it. You won't like it as I do, I think, quite; Law 
is my very particular cup of tea. J. C. Powys is right about 
Cambs. But Oxon is better country, much; I think almost the 
loveliest county that part round Hinksey and Godstow and 
on to Abingdofi. I have to go to Oxford on Nov. I2th to 
address the University Literary Society on Men's women and 
Women's men, in literature. Not an un-fruitful subject. 
Against the niminy-piminy Amelia, and Scott's heroines, set 
Rochester in Jane Eyre, etc. Which are worse ? And so to bed. 

Much love, 
R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 

All Hallows, 1952 1 
[Postmark: i Nov., 1952] 

My dear Hamilton, 

Your letter posted 2yth was very nice, as usual. I'm glad 
you got mine of 25th (which seems miraculous) in time to 
reply on Surface 5. 2 And now here we are in Hallow-tide. This 
morning Mass was very glorious and moving (to me) one 
somehow felt the dim, candled chapel was full of the hallows, 
listening and joining. I do so love that introit "Rejoice we all 
in the Lord, keeping holy-day in honour of all the hallows, in 
whose solemnity the angels rejoice, and glorify the Son of 
God." 3 I like it better, really, than in Latin perhaps because 

1 Probably Out of the Silent Planet. 

2 Father Johnson habitually numbered the five "writing surfaces" of his 
"air papers." 

3 Introit for the Feast of All Saints. 

44 



of that lovely old English word "hallows," which comes with 
its associations of poetry and ancient prose: "the blessed 
company of hallows", "Christ shall come, with all his hallows". 
I even like the oath "by all the hallows". A pity it is gone out, 
except in All Hallows, Hallow E'en, Hallow-tide, etc. I think 
I shall swear "by the Hallows" occasionally. Did you know 
that "halibut" means "holy flat-fish", because eaten on holy 
days ("butt" = flat-fish)? Well, anyhow, I like our version of 
that introit even better than the Latin "sanctorum omnium" 1 , 
though here you won't agree, I fancy. If we met, it would be 
interesting to go through a great number of the ancient Latin 
prayers and English translations, comparing the merits of each 
one. I think honours are about even; but I know you don't, 
being a more inveterate Latinist, and possibly less devoted to 
the i6th and iyth [century] vagaries and beauties of English? 
I don't mean you're not only that I believe I have a very 
special doting on our language and its old modes, as you on 
Latin. But I give you the Latin often. I like your " Tui nos . . . 
transire consortium' 2 better than our English. And "Per signum 
crucis de inimicis . . ." 3 which, at your suggestion, I often use. 
We are fortunate to have all these lovely choices. And, thanks 
to you, fresh Latin prayers continually come into my ken, and 
get adopted by me among my sacrosancta commercial. Oh yes, 
how they build up, as you say, into one whole "a whole 
world of truth and light." 

I'm glad poor Dr Joad has groped his way into it; from 
nothing. Did I tell you I have just been reviewing his book 
The Recovery of Belief Tor to-morrow's Sunday Times. It is an 
interesting book, with perhaps too much (for the ordinary 
person) about the various philosophies he weighed and 

1 "Of all the saints [or 'hallows'}." 

2 These few words do not show the meaning of the quotation. 

3 " By the sign of the Cross, (deliver us) from our enemies ..." See 
the Roman Missal, Mass for May 3rd (Feast of the Finding of the Holy 
Cross). 

4 "Sacred exchanges" i.e. her private devotions. 

45 



examined (he is a lecturer in philosophy) 1 before opting for 
a) Theism, b) Christianity, c) Anglicanism, I'm delighted to say. 
The same Sunday Times is, it seems, referring to the BBC 
"Critics", on which I have been (as Radio Critic) for the last 
few weeks (it is a weekly programme, where jive people 
discuss a play, a film, a book, an art exhibition, and a radio 
programme). Last week I selected "Six Talks on the 7 Deadly 
Sins" for us to criticize 2 the editor of the Sunday Times 
thought this a good topic for the little Sunday sermon they 
print ... [It discusses] the Critics' (and others') attitude towards 
Sin, which I myself thought rather negative and odd, all except 
mine and those of a Papist, Desmond FitzGerald. The Anglican 
and the Papist believed in the validity, to-day, of those 7 
sins: the others, being heathen creatures (as Piers Plowman 
puts it) apparently didn't. Seems odd to me. What do they 
make of Sloth, Anger, Envy, Lust, etc. ? Surely they must 
own them wrong. Perhaps I'll send you . . . [the] sermon- 
ette! . . . 

How much I require you in this flatl It is littered with 
defective fountain pens, effete Biros, broken-backed books, 
paper that would make note-books in your hands. A week's 
work from you, and I should be well set up with such com 
modities and my room would be integrated, restored, made 
coherent and seemly; then, when you had done all this, you 
would run through my Roman Missal and Breviaries, marking 
all the prayers I might profitably use, filling in the gaps in our 
epistolary commercium gratum? 

If you dont see the Ch[urch] Times, tell me, and I'll send 
you the 2nd of Fr Ross's articles on why he is not R.C. This 
one deals with the dogmatizing of the Assumption, and is very 
learned, good and thorough. (What, I wonder, is the R.C. 

1 A Reader in Philosophy at London University. 

2 A BBC series of seven talks on The Seven Deadly Sins and the Con 
temporary World. 

3 "Pleasant intercourse." 



answer to such evidence ?) I would like you to read it, and say 
what you think of it, so let me know if you don't see it. The 
Ch. T[imes] is not, on the whole, much worth while. Have 
you got on with Man on Donkey, I wonder ? It does weigh too 
much, doesn't it. Now I go out to visit the sick my friend 
Raymond Mortimer in a Nursing Home after an operation, 
my aunt 1 in Westbourne Grove (85). I must hurry, if I'm to 
get in both. 

My love to my best cousin and only pen-maker. 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde Street, W.i 
8th November, 1952 

My dear Hamilton, 

Behold an ocean letter, to enclose (a) my S[unday] T[imes] 
review of Dr Joad, (b) . . . little piece about the Critics on 
the 7 Deadlies, (c) an infuriate R.C. letter to me abusing me 
for upholding our Liturgy (of course the words he takes 
exception to, "our incomparable liturgy", are not mine, but 
such a familiar iyth c. quotation that you would think even 
an infuriate R.C. would know it; 2 but their fury that an 
eminent philosopher should have turned to Anglicanism upsets 
their balance), and(d) Fr Ross's " Why I am not R.C.", (no. 2), 
in case you didn't see it. 

Well, very many thanks for a[ir] p[aper] of All Hallows, 
posted (on 3rd) before you had got mine of the same Hallows. 
I am very sorry indeed about the sad Paine news. 3 Yes, how 

1 Mary Macaulay. 

2 In R. M.'s Sunday Times review of The Recovery of Belief she quotes 
from Sir Leoline Jenkins (see above p. 42^) and then comments "to have 
arrived at the incomparable liturgy in the village church from atheism is 
to have travelled far." 

3 The death of Frank C. Paine, husband of Virginia Paine (friend and 
former penitent of Fr Johnson). 

47 



wonderful of Frankie 1 to fly back and forth, baby in arms, like 
that ! I hope it wasn't bad for her, and that she'll be able to stay 
a while with her mother. Surely Mrs P. will "stay in the C. of 
E." ? You told me it meant so much to her and in bereave 
ment I suppose one would cling still more to it. Or did you 
mean she might be moved to turn elsewhere ? I hope not. I 
expect by now you'll have seen her. 

Thank you for remembering my sister on All Souls. We 
had a most lovely Requiem Mass at 8.15, also at 7.30. . . . 

Here we (most of my friends and I) are vexed about the 
U.S. election. Surely the good Ike is very unsuitable for any 
thing but guiding armies, whereas Stevenson is a liberal, 
cultured, apparently very educated man, far-seeing and 
^intelligent. But our Tories are pleased, so is an American lady 
I met at lunch (well, moderately pleased: she is on the whole 
Republican, but no bigot, and likes Stevenson). What do the 
people round you feel about it, I wonder? This sea letter 
throws our commercia all skewy; I must write an a.p. soon. 

Meanwhile, my love, 
R.M. 



[Postmark: London, W.i] 
loth November, 1952! 

My dear Hamilton, 

Yours of the 6th came to-day, thank you so much. I sent 

you a sea letter the other day, to enclose my review of Dr Joad 

and ... [a] little piece about the Critics and Sin, from the 

Sunday Times, and a furious letter I had from an irate R.C., 

who objected to my having quoted in my review (from Sir 

Leoline Jenkins, C.iy) praise of the Pfrayer] B[ook] Liturgy, 

which, my correspondent bitterly complained, we had stolen 

from the Roman missal and breviaries, as we had stolen their 

1 The Paines* daughter. 

48 



cathedrals, churches and schools. I never answer these angry 
letters, though I do answer the courteous ones. When you will 
get my sea letter, I don't know. I have also bidden Mowbray 
to send you the Pocket William Law, which I like so much. It 
is very much concerned with the inward light, Christ dwelling 
in us I suppose rather Quakerish in some ways, though he is 
also an ardent and devoted sacramentalist. I like what he says 
about salvation that, though we all think we want Christ for 
our Saviour, we don't always remember that the only mode of 
salvation is letting Him save us from our sins, and this we by 
no means always want. There is some skip in the book, but I 
like it nearly all, and find it full of "the riches of eternity" (his 
phrase). I wish someone would write a detailed history of those 
Non-Jurors; they are very interesting. Many of them must 
be among the Hallows. 

Oh yes, I am happy, and pretty well. I was not being sly 
and crafty in my All Hallows letter ; I do often write, not type. 
Sometimes, when one feels tired or lazy, sitting up at the table 
to type a letter seems the last straw; one can write it in one's 
lolling-chair; but I know this is hard on those who have to 
read it. Yes indeed: two years ago I didn't feel jolly; I was 
in a state of darkness and tension and struggle. But you 
stepped in with the remedy for that; and now I am jolly, even 
though much too busy, sometimes too tired, and sometimes 
undulant. And how often immersed in "the vanity of time", 
and forgetful of the state to which I am called. But there it is 
all the time, and I am in it whether or no, and can't always 
quite believe my good fortune. 

Did you see Fr Martindale's translation] of that Advent 3 

Secreta ? " May the Sacrifice of our devotion not only carry 

through the Holy Mystery as ordained, but marvellously 

produce in us Thy Salvation" (Words of Missal, p. 106). It 

seems rather abbreviated, and omits "jugiter" 1 . But he obviously 

takes it, as you do, as the Sacrifice, with capital S. That little 

1 "Continually." 

49 



book is very good and elucidating, and I like to have it by me. 
nth. (Beatus vir, sanctus Martinus, urbis Turonis Episcopus)* 
A nice bright day, but cool: I dare say it was pretty cold that 
day in Tours when St Martin cut his cloak in two. I always 
thought it would have been a still nicer deed to have given the 
whole cloak; but there was perhaps something in the sym 
bolism of sharing. 

You ask about my Oxford visit. It is tomorrow, and I am 
only going for one day; in the evening I give an address to 
the University Litferary] Society on the creation of men by 
. women, women by men, in fiction, drama and poetry. I think 
both sexes have tended to make their heroes and heroines rather 
their ideals of what they would like a man or a woman to be, 
whereas their own sex they often draw more from within, and 
achieve more realism. Not, of course, always. Anyhow, I shall, 
I suppose, be able to cough up something, when the time 
arrives. Enough to set them talking, I hope. I am glad to say 
my sessions with the BBC Critics are ending after this week, 
so I shall get more time to finish Ruins] I have had to neglect 
them shamefully this last month. They (BBC) have asked me 
to give a New Year's Eve talk on "Changing Manners (or 
Morals, or both)" from the earliest time on to now, which 
would have been amusing, and rather my cup (if you know 
that phrase), but I had to say no, as I simply shan't have the 
time to prepare it; I must stick to my Ruins now till done. I 
was surprised at the last Critics discussion, by the way, that my 
4 colleagues all agreed that Browning is no more read to-day, 
either by young or old. I was the only dissentient; "a forth 
right minority" again, as on Sin. In fact, the others never seem 
to have read him much at all. I was brought up on him, and 
read him still. He seems due for rediscovery. How odd these 
fashions are. Poets go down out of sight, and after some years 
up again (sometimes, that is; some founder for good). I have 
this morning a note of agreement with me from Fr Patrick 
1 "That blessed man, Saint Martin, Bishop of the City of Tours." 

50 



McLaughlin, vicar of St Thomas's, Regent Street, where 
Gerard Irvine also ministers; he says " How can ANY observant 
critic of to-day suppose that Browning is at the bottom of the 
trough of post-mortem obscurity ! My own circumscribed 
observation has convinced me that Browning is now engaging 
more and more interest, and is being recognized as a precursor 
of the complex writers of to-day." He is an intelligent, 
civilized priest, much addicted to Basilican rites; but, since the 
St Thomasian services clash with the Grosvenor, I don't see 
much of them, tho' I sometimes go to discussion meetings, 
etc., at St Anne's House, 1 whereof Patrick Mclaughlin is a 
warden; I like them all there. Dear me, what a number of 
talkable-to clergy I know in these days ; two years ago, how 
few! In fact, actually none, well (except a few relations). . . . 
I think the Catholic Mind 2 is right about modern historians, 
on the whole. In spite of Hugh Ross Williamson (Anglican 
near-Roman priest) who said in a BBC discussion lately that 
Jesuits all deplored the Gunpowder Plot at the time. He should 
read some of their contemporary reactions and see Consul Hugh 
Lee's letters from Lisbon on Fr Floyd's reactions to the Great 
Powder Action there were others too ; but no more space, as 
you see ! 

My love, 
R.M. 



1 St Anne's House, Soho; "a kind of centre of discussions, lectures, etc., 
connected with St Thomas's church and run by the clergy there." (See 
Letters to a Friend, p. 161.) 

2 Roman Catholic journal published in New York. 

51 



[Postmark: London, W.i] 
20th November, 1952! 

My dear Hamilton, 

Thank you so much for a[ir] pfaper] of isth-iyth, which 
arrived this morning. I am not writing supine, as you 
counselled, but seated erect on my sofa and tapping away with 
energy, if not precision. Outside my windows it is a drizzling, 
snow-like, dark day; November at its worst. I like your scraps 
of liturgy that broke into it this morning and also our lit 
reserved chapel, 1 to which I drove Canon Hood for the 8.15 
(which sounds like a train, but isn't). . . . 

1 like "ponder on reasonable things", (though "ever" may 
be excessive for such an exercise). O Sapiential "Spiritual" 
seems quite off it. But what a good prayer. We none of us 
ponder enough on rationabilia. I have been pondering on 
Philfippians] 2 (did I raise this before ?), whether we are to bow 
at or in the name. 2 Greek en, Latin in nomine, Knox "before", 
Gore's Commentary "in". I prefer "in" myself; it is wider 
and less mechanical than the idea of bowing "at" the name. 
What do you think ? Did you see or shall you see a sermon 
by the Bishop of Monmouth in the Church Times, about the 
Coronation Oath ? 3 Tell me what you think of it. He asserts, 
I suppose truly, that the word " Protestant " is nowhere used 
in any C. of E. formularies, Prayer-Book or other, and there 
fore should not be in the Oath, which promises to maintain 
the Protestant Reformed Church as established in the United 
Kingdom, covering thus both England and Scotland, whose 
churches are not in communion. He also gives a rather 
partisan account of the Reformation, leaving out Henry VIII 
altogether, saying that the Church merely decided to improve 

1 R. M. means the Lady Chapel at Grosvenor Chapel (then lighted up), 
where the Holy Sacrament is reserved. 

2 " That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow," Phil. 2. 10. 

3 A sermon preached in Westminster Abbey by Rt. Rev. A. E. Morris, 
and reported in the Church Times of 2ist November, 1952. 



itself, as Roman errors had grown up ; and have, he adds, now 
increased a lot in the past century. What with " Roman 
errors " and " Nonconformist defects", I should think the 
sermon would give some offence ; but I have seen no reactions 
so far. Well, I hope the C. of E. will go on keeping its variety, 
and provide something for all minds, as it now does. Next 
Tuesday Gerard Irvine from St Thomas's is taking our 
Mass. ... I think he will be careful. I went to his birthday 
lunch the other day; I am really very fond of this gay and 
extreme young man, and it is quite fun to know him. . . . 

You ask about Oxford. I went there by train, to give 
myself a chance to make a few notes of what to say, as I hadn't 
had really time to prepare a speech. They were a nice lively 
audience, full of comments and questions after I had finished. 
I left them at it and caught the last train home, as I had to 
get back that night. I am glad that engagement is now cleared 
out of the way. I am now settling again to Ruins, and work 
at them as much as I can. I have refused an invitation from 
the BBC to give a talk at the end of the year on "Changes in 
Morals and Manners", so they now say will I give one on 
Morals later, when I have time, and someone else is doing 
Manners on New Year's Eve. The interesting changes in 
morals have been among people who mean well, of course. 
The disappearance of the practices of slavery, torture, various 
kinds of barbarous punishments which were universally thought 
right, etc. Then there is sex morality, the treatment of women, 
of children all kinds of things. Whether I shall ever really 
give this talk, I don't know, I am feeling at the moment that 
I shall never have time, or be free from my load of work; I 
wish I could be. Now I think I must go to bed, in order to 
rise early (earlier than usual) and fetch Canon Hood to Mass. 

22nd. Actually Stir-up Sunday 1 to-morrow I wasn't expecting 

1 25th Sunday after Trinity. 
53 



it so soon. I read the collect at Mass to myself; then looked 
it up in the Latin. Our translation is certainly rather poor; not 
accurate, and .not nearly so good. 1 I don't like the substitution 
of "reward" for "remedies"; nor the rendering of exsequentes 
by "bringing forth". Should it not be "following after the 
fruits of thy divine working" ? (Or perhaps "seeking" ?) And 
could it be translated "the more willingly they pursue the 
fruits of thy divine works/ the more they may, by thy mercy, 
receive thy remedies (or healing)"? I mean, could it be a 
dependent clause like that ? (I don't think dependent is the right 
grammatical term here, but you know what I mean.) Anyhow, 
the P.B. version seems weak. But I prefer "stir up" to excita. 
I see it ends with our old friend perdpiant. 2 Well, anyhow, 
Advent is, in all senses, coming. One could do with a longer 
year so much to do, so little done, alas. 

Much love, 
R.M. 

Tell me when you "perceive" the little Wm Law from 
Mowbrays. 

$th December, I952f 
Train from Romford 

My dear Hamilton, 

Cold fog envelops me, as I sit in this evening train back to 
Bond Street from Romford, my first visit there for nearly a 
month 3 ; first I had a long cold (or flue) then my sister did and 
all the time she was too terribly overworked to take any half- 
days (she is entitled to two a week, but seldom now gets one, 
as they are so understaffed in her district, and half the time she 
is doing another nurse's work besides her own. So then I don't 

1 " Stir up, we beseech thee, O Lord, the wilk of thy faithful people; 
that they, plenteously bringing forth the fruit of good works, may of thee 
be plenteously rewarded . . ." 

2 Literally "that they may receive." See Letters to a Friend, p. 147. 

8 R. M. usually visited her sister Jean at Romford once a week. 

54 



go there). This afternoon was foggy in London thick and 
bad for travelling. 

6th. (St Nicholas) I got home latish, and to-day drove 
out at 8 into a fog that grew so dense round Grosvenor 
Square that I left my car (lights on) in the square, and searched 
on foot for the Chapel in S[outh] Audley Street, which 
eventually I found, and was able to honour St Nicholas by 
attendance at the post-Gospel part of his Mass. Fog has 
continued all day, getting thicker. Fortunately this evening 
I am at home and haven't got to brave the indecipherable roads 
and the fog which totally comprehends all lights. 

Thank you for two good letters, 22nd and 26th. 

I think I must get The Man on Donkey from the library 
again, and read it now I am stronger in body and mind than I 
was in the summer. I was interested in it then, but not really 
feeling much up to close and attentive reading of so large and 
copious and many-threaded a book. I'm sure I should get more 
from it now. I am glad the best American papers were 
appreciative; anyhow the R.C. ones. I feel it may be among 
the scriptures written for our learning that we pray to-morrow 
to mark and inwardly digest. 1 I never confine this prayer 
wholly to the Bible having been told as a child that it included 
all profitable literature. Oh dear, how can Ronald Rnox 
publish such cheap, sneering stuff as this new book I see 
reviewed in yesterday's Church Times'? The bits quoted are 
really vulgar and insolent as that it will be no use arriving for 
Judgment without "R.C." on one's identity disc, even if one 
may get a little good from a Buchmanite meeting or early 
services at Pusey House; and other rude sneers at Protestants. 2 
Those who know him now say he has ceased to think, which 

1 See Collect for 2nd Sunday in Advent. 

2 See R. A. Knox's The Hidden Stream (1952), p. 132. This collection of 
addresses to Roman Catholic undergraduates at Oxford was reviewed in 
the Church Times of 5th December, 1952, under the heading "Unworthy 
of Monsignor Knox." 

55 



seems tragic for his influence in his own Church and will surely 
put off possible converts who read and hear him, besides all 
Anglicans and probably all Dominicans! I can imagine the 
dislike the brothers Mathew must feel for his latest utterances. 
(By the way, should not one new cardinal have been chosen 
from England?) I was taken over Lambeth Palace the other 
day. ... I hadn't been there since long before it was bombed 
and the chapel so badly ... It is a haunted place; I felt the 
spirits of all that line of archbishops whispering about, mutter 
ing comments on the actions of the Church to-day a cloud 
of probably rather critical, but interested and friendly, witnesses. 
No doubt all pleased by the coronation service and its cere 
monies; though its expense must seem to them wildly 
excessive, as indeed it does to me, when money is so badly 
needed for our old and only barely subsisting poor people, and 
so many other things. It's all wrong, and humanity is not sane 
or just on this matter of expenditure. Surely they must know 
it more important that almost destitute people, here and in 
other lands, should have some relief than that the Queen's 
coronation robe should be w r oven from the best velvet, costing 
about a hundred pounds an inch. Oh dear, what a crazy race 
human beings are. What a chance for a strong-minded and 
right-minded young queen to take a more thoughtful and 
intelligent line, and how it would increase her popularity ! . . . 
And how could there be an Advent (apart from incursions into 
individual souls) into a world such as we make it? What a 
shock it would be, to us so sunk in the vanity of time, so remote 
from the riches of eternity. . . . Under 3 weeks to Christmas. 
For me, the second Xmas in which I have joined. I shall stay 
here for the midnight Mass, and go to Romford on Xmas 
morning. . . . Tell me how you are. You say too little of this. 
I am well. 

Much love, 
R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
i$th December, 1952 j 

My dear Hamilton, 

I have just done up my Christmas card to send you by 
surface mail, but I fear too late to reach you by 25th. This 
a[ir] p[aper] is, on the other hand, too early, but it brings my 
love for Christmas; I am beginning it now, while staying 
indoors on this dark cold afternoon and trying to get some of 
the chores of the season done lists, etc. and this letter is a 
break in this dreary labour. Thank you so much for yours 
posted 5th ? with account of your day at Way land, 1 mention 
of Understanding Europe* (which I will get from the Lfondon] 
L[ibrary]) acknowledgment of William Law, on which I shall 
hope sometime to hear your views, and other interesting 
matters. I am at present awaiting Dr R. W. Chapman, of the 
Oxford [University] Press, who is looking [in] for a drink. I 
shall like to see him; he is so very bibliophile and erudite, as 
well as very pleasant. 

I met another nice person the other day the Rev. Ulrich 
Simon, a clever young Austrian refugee Jew, who lectures on 
Hebrew and Theology in King's Coll[ege], London, and has 
now taken Anglican orders and has the cure of some Bedford 
shire village. 3 I had him to lunch to meet Victor Gollancz, 
which pleased and stimulated him greatly. He wrote to me 
afterwards of [how] much he had enjoyed it, adding, " I am in 
no sense a Liberal, and don't often come across, theologically, 
the liberal point of view, which I feel that both you and V. G. 
so well represent; I like to hear what I don't altogether agree 
with well expressed". I don't quite know what he was 

1 The Paine family home: Greenways, Wayland, Mass. 

2 Christopher Dawson, Understanding Europe (1952). 

3 Dr Ulrich Simon came from Germany in 1933, was ordained priest 
in 1939 and is the author of several books. 

57 



referring to ; I don't think we discussed theology, but V. G. of 
course does represent a quite individual point of view; he was 
brought up in strict orthodox Judaism, from which he broke 
completely away (tho* even now his stomach can't take to 
oysters or pig), thought at one time of being baptized, but 
receded from that, and is now a very religious-minded, God- 
believing crusader for all good causes, without adopting any 
church belief. A very generous-minded courageous man, so 
egotistical that he shocks some people, so unreticent in what 
he prints about himself that he embarrasses others; and so 
entertaining as company that he makes any gathering a roaring 
success. A unique character; I am very fond of him. He 
charmed Ulrich Simon completely. 

I am glad you had that afternoon at Mrs Paine's, and saw 

also B and son. And how good that she is happy (the girl, 

I mean) after all the beginning part of it. How well it has 
worked out. Poor Mrs Paine; I hope she will be happy after 
the first shock and loneliness. If ever it comes in unobtrusively, 
do give her my sympathy ; or perhaps I asked you to do that 
before. 

More and more, I can't imagine any other church one 
could belong to with content besides ours. Certainly not the 
Roman; certainly no form of Protestantism but ours; in fact, 
certainly nothing. I think all these very Romanizing churches 
make a great mistake, throwing away the specific Anglican 
beauty and distinction for something a little artificial and 
tawdry. Still, it does seem to suit some minds. We kept Dec. 
8th at Mass calling it the Feast of the Conception of the 
B.V.M. (as I suppose our Missal 1 does) ; at St Thomas's Regent 
Street they kept the Feast of the Immaculate Conception], as 
no doubt whatever missal they use there does. To me this 
seems so superfluous. What do we gain by such a theory ? No 
warrant in Scripture, Gerard Irvine admits (I drove him this 
1 The Altar Missal at Grosvenor Chapel, 

53 



morning up to Hampstead to communicate Dr Joad) 1 , but to 
him it seems to have a certain logic. To me, none. Not that 
it matters one way or another; except that to pile miracle on 
miracle makes unreason and unreality and more stumbling- 
blocks. Anyhow, are we to believe that any human being has 
ever been perfect? 

[We had] . . . such a good Advent sermon [at Grosvenor 
Chapel] about our personal relation to the coming of Christ, 
and what it might mean to us as a re-creating process (I mean 
the second coming). How badly we shall need that! The hell 
we make for ourselves, the heaven we so little make no 
struggling can ever make enough heaven in our minds to make 
us heaven-worthy. I get nightmares in which I seem to hear 
Him say, " Depart, I don't know you", and then an end of all 
prayer, all communion, all being guided and cared for by 
Him, only darkness and aloneness, and a door shut for ever 
because we wouldn't open it while we could. Timor mortis 
conturbat me? However, there is, we hope, purgation-time; 
only the " Depart " is, I suppose, uttered after all that, if we 
haven't even then made the grade. Can you really believe it 
could happen, that we could be shut, or allowed to shut our 
selves, right out of God's love for ever? I don't really believe 
it could. The Romans think it is a formal and technical thing 
either you die in Grace or you don't. Those mechanical 
views seem to me ridiculous as well as immoral; but they must 
bring a certain relief and peace to those who hold them. I 
suppose what they picture as being said is, " Depart, you died 
not in grace", with no reference to character or conduct. 
Beautifully easy. Or else terribly distressing, for those who die 
outside the means of grace. Well, we will not brood on these 
sad matters I don't know how I got on to them. Advent 

1 This was during Dr. Joad's fatal illness; see foreword to his Folly 

*7'4he 4 fear of death confoundeth me," the refrain in William Dunbar's 
Lament for the Makers. See Letters to a Friend, p. 47- 

59 



Thoughts, I suppose, as the little books at Mowbrays call them. 
Yes: what a happy come-back of Religious Orders in 
Britain. Were there really none before Fr Benson made the 
S.SJ.E. P 1 It seems odd that the High Churchmen of the iyth 
and 1 8th centuries never thought of it or anyhow did it 
(apart from Little Gidding, a faint shadow of it). Law would 
have approved; so would Jeremy Taylor, I think. And Dr 
Cosin; and, surely, Laud? (Only he was too near the Dis 
solution and Reformation; the others had got right away.) 
My Yule love: I may write again, nearer the Day. 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
i6th December, 1952! 

My dear Hamilton, 

I want to send another word to catch Christmas, which this, 
posted early to-morrow, should about do, with the tardy 
Christmas posts. I hope you won't mind handwriting I have 
had such a day of shopping and chores, and feel dead to the 
world. 

Your letters of loth and nth came together yesterday; 
thank you so much for them bright beams in the mist of 
Christmas cards and letters that assault one and must be coped 
with. I have been coping most of to-day, despatching my 
private card, a few others to those who wouldn't understand 
my card (I sent it to you by surface, and no doubt you'll get it 
sometime), and slopping about in the slushy snow trying to 
shop. Odd weather: alternate frost and snow and thaw and 
rain. I fetched Canon Hood this morning and we glissaded 
gently down melting snow streets. But oh yes, I am living well 

x The Society of St John the Evangelist (the "Cowley Fathers"), 
founded in 1865 by R. M. Benson, is the oldest Anglican society for men 
religious. 

60 



within my strength and velocity. Jeanie isn't, alas, but 1 am. 
A nice warm flat, nice sedentary work, a nice car and, what 
do you think, now two sweet little stoves in chapel, one on 
either side of the altar, giving a perceptible warmth, tho' no 
torrid heat. 

I'm afraid Royal Extravagance is an impregnable mountain 
to assault. I don't think it ever dawns on royal minds not to 
practise it. William IV tried, but was brought into line. The 
only hope would be in an archbishop who had revolutionary 
views on money (perhaps Temple might, if he was here) and 
an influence over the sovereign. . . . We have indeed got 
beyond "to every man a damsel or two", but not beyond the 
vulgarity of great riches. Well, one mustn't be censorious. 

Did I tell you I hope to keep the Coronation in Cyprus; 
mid-May to mid-June, as I had planned (or else Italy) this 
summer, but undulated instead. 1 I hope to find Abroad almost 
empty of my compatriots ! (But they may all think of Cyprus 
too.) Speaking of the holy scriptures written for our learning, 
... [I have been] given . . . for Christmas such a good scholarly 
collection of i4th and I5th century religious writings, taken 
largely from MSS, by a very scholarly woman called Kirch- 
berger. 2 There is a lot of v.g. stuff in it. I like that Erasmus 
letter you quote. And that is a v. interesting question you raise 
as to what the Papacy lost usually people only consider what 
we lost (and gained). One could pursue this further. But here 
is the end; I send much love for Christmas. How good to know 
that you are there. Much more to say but no space, and no 
time. What about k//?? 

Yours always with love and Christmas wishes. 

R.M. 



1 See Letters to a Friend, p. 318 

2 The Coasts of the Country; An Anthology of Prayer drawn from the Early 
English Spiritual Writers, edited by Clare Kirchbergcr (1952). 

61 



Romford 
Christmas Day 
Festum Nat[ivitatis] Dom[ini], 

My dear Hamilton, 

Here I am in dom: sororis in the p.m. of Fest: Nat: 
Dom: 9 very slothful and rather drowsy, surrounded by 
Christmas accessories cards, holly, crib, sister, sister's friend, 1 
presents, etc,, etc. I came down this morning, so have had no 
Christmas services since midnight Mass in the Chapel, which 
was very beautiful. I had a full Christmas Eve. Last minute 
cards all the morning, then a friend to lunch, then the King's 
Coll : Christmas Eve carol service on the radio in the afternoon, 
then to the Chapel to be shriven, then out to dinner with 
Arthur Koestler (do you know his books?) where my two 
fellow-guests, great friends of mine, were going off to 
Brompton Oratory for the Mpdnight] M[ass] there, they being 
of that way of thinking, and trying to make me accompany 
them. But I, remarking firmly " Hell roast the Pope", turned 
my back on them and departed for my Anglican chapel. Then 
had a lovely long sleep till I rose and came down here. 

Epistolam tuam 17 Dec: accepi et nan antea rescripsi, tarn 
libenter legi? Cicero seems to say antea for "already" but I 
suppose jtfrn would be all right, wouldn't it ? Anyhow, I allude 
to your epistolam aercam lately received: I love what you say 
about your telling the just-returned Fr Palmer (who always 
sounds so likeable) 3 about the Latin Collects and The M[an] on 
a D[onkey] and Erasmus on Fisher and Colet, about which last 
he uttered definite opinions. I'm glad you have him back to 
converse and discuss with. One does need someone at hand 
who takes an interest in the same things and likes to talk about 

1 Nancy Willetts. 

2 "I received your letter of the lyth Dec., and I did not reply before; 
but I read it with such great pleasure/' 

3 Rev. R. F. Palmer, S.S.J.E. 

62 



them, and if views differ, so much the better, it stimulates the 
mind. My sister and I like to discuss die same things, and differ 
quite a lot. We were discussing just now the Quaker habit of 
never saying Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, etc., but always "the 
first, second, third day of the week", to avoid using the names 
of heathen gods. Certainly die Q.s are faddy people, but they 
do know what they think is right and stick to it, tho* why they 
think it wrong to use the ordinary names for days and months 
(months, of course, are equally suspect) puzzles non-Quakers. 
Well, they are an excellent people, and perhaps the most 
logical of Christians. No sacraments, no liturgy, no church, 
no creed. To do so much upon so little argues great will-power 
and faith. 

Oh yes, how veiled they are, those figures of the past. And 
how glorious it would be to see those first Christian decades 
clearly. I think no historian can do that for us, ever. . . . My 
view [is] that in many respects the Evangelists (writing long 
afterwards from memory) must have got much of His actual 
words wrong, and imparted into them some Jewish bias or 
tradition. . . . [For instance] our Lord's reported words about 
hell " Depart, I never knew you" etc. 1 which imply God's 
final abandonment of the souls he has tried so hard, in life, to 
guide and redeem, but who, perhaps, refuse salvation. Is that 
ultimate darkness and rejection (even tho' self-inflicted) 
possible ? Those words seem so unlike Him. ... If only we 
had a shorthand transcript or a Boswell ! (Which reminds me 
of your question about Dr Johnson. What he said was about 
women preaching: it was like a dog walking on his hind legs, 
not done well, but wonderful that it should be done at all.) 2 
Tell me sometime how you react to Wm Law. I like the parts 
about Christ in the soul, and the perpetual choice between 
heaven and hell, and the power of the "working will" in us. 
I hope you got my last epistola in time for Christmas. This you 

1 See Matt 7. 23. 

2 See BoswelTs Life of Johnson, Vol. i, p. 463. (Ed. G. B. Hill.) 

6 3 



will get before next year. All my love and good wishes for it. 

S. V. B. 1 this wintry weather. One of our congregation 

a girl was killed in that Austrian avalanche; very shocking 

for her people. 

Your devoted 

R. M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
New Year <> Eve, 



My dear Hamilton, 

I've no business to be taking time off to write to you 
(instead of about the ruins of the Knights Hospitaller at 
Rhodes) 2 this morning; but I have two enchanting letters from 
you since Christmas, and feel moved to write on this last day 
of 1952 (for me a happy year, for which I am thankful). First, 
I'm sorry about the way my printers bungled my card. As 
you noticed, they dropped out nisi, and I dropped out (at the 
last minute) the opening clause that put the sentence into the 
accusative and subjunctive, forgetting that the rest of the 
sentence needed it. This was to save space, trying to get it all 
into two lines, and mere Christmas-rush carelessness and 
oblivion. The dropping of nisi was the printer's fault (I fear no 
Latinist) and mine too for not reading it carefully before it was 
too late. I ought to have pointed out to you these defects, 
which have vexed me rather. 3 I had a puzzled letter from 

1 Si vales bene est. ("If you are flourishing, good.") 

2 See R. M.'s Pleasure of Ruins, p. 448. 

3 R. M.'s Christmas card included a quotation from Cornelius a Lapide 
(Cornells Cornelissen van den Steen, S. J., 1567-1637): "Hemerobaptistae 
censerent homtnem non posse vivere, nisi singulis diebus in aqua mergeretur, ac ita 
ablueretur et sanctificaretur ab omni culpa. Verum haec est anatum potius et 
piscium vita, quam hominum" ("The Hemerobaptists believe that man 
cannot live unless on every day he plunge into the water and be washed 
clean and be sanctified from every sin. Nay, but this is rather the life of 
ducks and fishes than of human beings.") See Letters to a Friend, p. 352. 



E. V. Knox about it; he ends, " However, it is a beautiful 
thought". I particularly like myself the "life rather for ducks 
and fishes than for men". Fr Cornelius s. j. would have con 
sidered me much too much of a duck or fish. 

No, I didn't draw the picture, tho' I composed the verse, 1 
and drew a design for the picture, to be copied by someone 
t who can draw, which I can't, alas. Even the Adeste in the 
balloon would have come out in crooked and uneven lettering, 
had I done it. But I suggested the fishes, the sea-horse, 
etc. and of course the ruined church. I like to muse on 
such submarine scenes, very much; they mean a lot in my 
life. 

How good are both your letters! . . . About Timor 
Mortis. ... I do [think] those words reported in the Gospels 
uncharacteristic, 2 and that one has to allow for a margin of 
erjror and misreporting by reporters writing at second hand 
years afterwards, and inclined to colour their records with their 
traditional Jewish feelings, often exclusive and intolerant. I 

have always thought this I looked at that third Exhortation 3 

(first in the American P[rayer] B[ook], which omits, I see, the 
sentence about eating and drinking to our damnation) and it 
reminded me once more of that "great and endless comfort" 
which has come to me I mean, I have come to it during 
the last two years, and that surely, while we cling to it, won't 
ever repudiate us, however poor our efforts. Yes ; I wish the 
P.B. had kept "concede, quaesumus . . ." 4 , also "da nobis . . .fulget 
in mente" 5 and "Hujus nos, Domine"* But Cranmer did very 

1 And they who swim on Christmas Day may Lear the thin sigh 

Of faint bells, of sunk bells, and drowned quires cry. 
"Adeste, natatores," and down the swimmers come, 
Singing "Adoremus dominum." 

2 "Depart from me . . ." See above p. 59- 

3 The Third Exhortation to Holy Communion in the Book of Common 
Prayer. 

4 "Grant, we beseech thee . . ." 

5 "Give us ... shines in our hearts." 

6 These few words do not show the meaning of the quotation. 

65 



well; one could scarcely have better. I feel better about Mortis 
now, thank you very much, dear Father. 

I feel that you and Fr Palmer might have found a more 
stimulating and comforting "little something" on a December 
afternoon (and Christmas at that) than milk and cold coffee. At 
Romford we were better comforted than that; also so was I 
at my Boxing-Night dinner at Hampstead, with charming 

friends, where also was ... the Rector of (I forget his 

name) he was nice and genial, and believed in anointing, both 
for body and soul. My sister says it has had little effect on those 
of his parishioners who have now been settled on a new housing 

estate in , and are so wicked that the nurses rather shudder 

at visiting them after dark; their . . . rector says he isn't 
surprised, from what he knows of them. He should anoint 
them more earnestly and assiduously. 

Why doesn't St Paul's have a midnight Mass on Xmas Eve ? 
I can't think. Nor why, since they do have a watch-night 
service, 1 they don't make it a Mass. But above all, why neglect 
Xmas Eve as they do ? I shall ask the good Dean sometime. 2 
So many churches, town and country, do have it now ; surely 
our great cathedral should. The Abbey is lost to everything 
but die Coronation; it has shut up most of itself, to fix seats, 
etc. Really it is a disgrace, 6 months of this nonsense. 3 Such 
zfuss. I shall be glad to be out of it, in a better country. I shall 
write to you from Cyprus, tho' difficult for you to write to me, 
as I shall be on the move. Unless you indite one letter, and 
send it to Poste Restante, Famagusta, Cyprus, sometime but 
I'll send you that address nearer the time. Did I tell you of the 
hymn I found about that blessed island? Oh it will be most 
beautiful. I shall aim at sending you a birthday greeting from it. 

I think I will go to St Paul's to-night. There is something 
very noble and impressive about those vast echoing halls 
swelling with hymn and prayer, and the great bell booming 

1 On New Year's Eve. 2 Very Rev. W. R. Matthews. 

8 The Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II took place on 2nd June, 1953. 

66 



out the year's close, and the chimes of all the churches ringing 
in the next. And it is a time for furbishing up resolutions and 
aspirations and giving thanks: gr alias agere, indeed. I wonder 
how you will be spending it. And why don't High Churches 
have a watch-night? I suppose because it's not done at Rome: 
but again, why not ? It is interesting to track out these mysteries 
of different usages, how far they spring from differences inherent 
in different communions and parties, how far they have 
developed by chance, more or less. 

Do you read Jeremy Taylor ? I see there is a new edition of 
the Golden Grove just out, which I must get hold of. I am very 
partial to him myself. A reviewer says he didn't believe in the 
Real Presence. I must look and see. I don't feel sure that this 
reviewer knows quite what the R.P. is; but he may be right 
about Jeremy, tho' I should be surprised. He did believe in 
Confession; John Evelyn was one of his penitents. And he 
wrote the most exquisite prose. I do wish you such a good 
new year, such a very good one indeed. And pray you may 
have it, and so many more. You have my love for all of them; 
how good to know I have yours ! 

Your loving 
R.M. 



67 



1953 



20, Hinde House, Hinde Street, W.i 
8th January, 1953 1 

My dear Hamilton, 

I daren't disturb the sheets now in my typewriter half 
typed, so must try this by pen I hope you won't be defeated 
by it. Your letter posted New Year's Eve came two days ago, 
thank you so much. I must get View-review' 1 , in spite of its odd 
and discouraging name. It sounds worth reading. Did it 
perhaps review Man on Donkey in an earlier number ? The 
reviews here have been good. I suppose the popular American 
reviews wouldn't think it quite on the level of their readers 
too long and difficult. I am glad you are so seized of it, 
apprehended and comprehended by it. I have been thinking 
that the author would surely be pleased if you should write to 
her about it; [though] not quite as pleased as I was when you 
wrote to me in August 1950 about They Were Defeated, 
because she won't have the memory of you that I had, that 
made it so delightful to hear from you. But she couldn't 
but be pleased, and you might have an interesting and 
pleasant correspondence about it. Do put this in hand, instanter, 
and let me know how it goes. All you have said about 
that book to me would be of immense interest to her, of 
course. 

We had a lovely Epiphany Mass I do like this feast. 
Stella ista sicut flamma coruscafi. . . . 

Why is it that Christ as light means more to me than any 
other aspect ? The light that lighteth every man. . . . 

Someone showed me yesterday The Month, which has a 
very waspish article on Charles Williams, whom it called 
an Anglican idol. 3 There were some other articles I want 

1 A quarterly "guide to Christian reading and teaching 1 *, published by 
the S.P.C.K. 

2 "That star sparkles like a flame." 

3 H. D. HansheU, "A Heresy Hunt," The Month, January 1953. 

71 



to read, too. It's Dominican, isn't it? 1 I am reading Sean 
O'Faolain's Newmans Way in bed at night. It interests me; 
there is a lot about his family, his brothers and sisters and 
parents. One brother very dotty; another (Francis) very 
Calvinist, and went off to convert savages to Plymouth 
Brotherhood. 

The Oxford part is good. We see John Henry as a gauche, 
silent, very devout young Fellow of Oriel, nervously conscious 
of his dim social background, using the wrong implements at 
the Fellows' Table, so that the Provost said, "Mr Newman, we 
do not serve sweetbreads with a spoon", and he felt terribly 
inferior. Gradually, I suppose, he expanded, socially and 
intellectually. I must look again at Young Mr Newman. 2 
O'Faolain is a sympathetic and entertaining writer, Irish R.C. 
of course, but pretty critical of the Church, and certainly no 
bigot. On the other hand, I doubt if he knows anything from 
the inside about the Anglican Church indeed, how could 
he? 

What naively simple beliefs Newman, and most of his 
generation (pre-Darwin, of course) held. It is difficult now to 
understand how good intelligences could accept all those 
fundamentalist theories about the earth, for instance. Or about 
the Church and the Papacy. As O'Faolain remarks: "Savona 
rola, swinging on a rope above a fire, by order of Alexander VI, 
would not have agreed with this". But how good John Henry 
was : how unselfish, how compassionate, how generous ! A 
refreshment to read, after the life of the vulgar worldling 
Arnold Bennett. 3 

Did I tell you Gerard Irvine is going to be ID charge of 
Cranford Mission Church, Middlesex? There is also an old 
church there, where Fuller was once vicar, and Bp Wilkins. 

1 The Month is edited by Jesuits, not by Dominicans. 

2 Maisie Ward, Young Mr Newman (1948). 

3 R. Pound, Arnold Bennett; a Biography (1952). 

72 



It will be good for Gerard to have a church to run, and a parish 
of 10,000 people to serve. 1 

Much love, and do act on my epistolary suggestion. 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hlnde Street, W.i 
i8th January, 1953 

My dear Hamilton, 

An ocean letter this time to enclose a rather good little 
cutting from the Sunday Times. ... It is Christian Unity week 
here, or about to be. I can't go to any meetings about it, as 
I have to work all day and all night till end of month. But 
I like this about bridging our differences. I ... rather like the 
differences . . . they keep up a wholesome subversiveness against 
unthinking uniformity. If only the Romans would come off 
their high pole and stop being so stuck up and drop a little 
of their "tribal patriotism" and stupid contempt, the rest of us 
could soon get together I mean worship together, in spite of 
differences. William Temple would have worked it, if he had 
lived. And the R.C.'s really are getting rather better, the last 
few years, though still stuck-up and contemptuous and untruth 
ful. There was an offensive and stupid attack on the Marian 
martyrs in a R.C. paper lately I'm glad we never attack the 
Elizabethan ones. Well, we must pray for them, that they may 
have a larger charity and understanding. 

Thank you for your v.g. letter of Epiphany. I haven't, 
literally, had a moment in which it would have been right to 
give the time to answer it. I oughtn't to be doing so now 
really, but felt I wanted to. You are probably right about a 
midnight Mass at St Paul's. I put it to the Dean the other day, 
1 The Church of the Holy Angels, Cranford, serves a London Diocesan 
Home Mission district with an estimated population of over 10,000. The 
mother church, St Dunstan's, Cranford, is where Thomas Fuller was Rector 
1658-61. Bp John Wilkins followed him in 1661. 

73 



meeting him. He said they wouldn't grasp it or like it, or even 
(some of them) behave seemly at it. So I suppose he is right. 
I have been thinking of you at your Retreat, 5th loth; I hope 
it was good. I like Benedictions as a rule, both Anglican and 
Roman. 

I hope you acted on my suggestion and wrote to Miss 
Prescott. I am sure she would like it. You have so wonderfully 
and richly grasped and appreciated her book, 1 marked and 
inwardly digested it. When I am out of this jungle, I shall 
read it again. Do you think, but for the form our Reformation 
took, the English influence would have helped to steady and 
sanify the Church? Save it, I mean, from some emotional 
excesses and faults of taste ? And possibly from some intoler 
ance tho' God knows we were all intolerant enough once. 
There is a book Miss Prescott could write: an imaginary story 
of an English unreformed Church. Do suggest it to her. I 
must stop. So much love. 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde Street, W.i 
23 rJ January, I953f 

My dear Hamilton, 

I am knocking off my admirable discursion on the Bantu 
ruins in Southern Rhodesia (not built well, but marvellous that 
Bantu negroes should have built in stone at all) in order to send 
you an air letter, as my last (what date ? I forget) was surface 
mail, in order to enclose something (what ? I forget) and you 
won't get it quite yet. Since I wrote it, your a[ir] Ifetter] of 
I3th has arrived, and deserves a better answer than this can be. 
Well, I'm sorry you think you won't write to the Woman 
Behind the Man on the Donkey, but I do see your point of 
view, which is entirely my own where letters are concerned, 
1 The Man on a Donkey. 
74 



and I can think of few things more disastrous than starting a 
new correspondence with any one. Letters are a burden 
indeed . . . they seem often the last straw that breaks the back 
. . . you should see the piles of those that I must answer that 
litter and weight my writing table. Which disposes of your 
notion that I should ever write to Miss Prescott. Perish the 
thought! Uninterrupted equanimity, indeed! If I could only 
get half an hour of this. All I do get is hour at Mass each 
morning; what I should do without that . . . [sic] I expect my 
mind would altogether go to pieces. Of course when I have 
this book done, it will be quite different, and I hope that in 
Cyprus my equanimity will be only interrupted by the 
ravishing spectacles of medieval monasteries and castles on 
mountain heights, medieval cities on the sea, ancient cities 
dedicated to the cult of Aphrodite, etc., as well as by bathing 
in that heavenly sea and driving a hired Ford up and down the 
mountains. Not that these enjoyments will make me anything 
but equanimous. So we'll neither of us write to Miss Prescott; 
who is, I believe, an Anglican, by the way, but probably not a 
cousin or an old penitent, but none the less would be highly 
gratified and interested to hear from you. One likes interesting 
and understanding letters about one's books. I had one yester 
day from a daughter of old Hilaire Belloc, about my Wilderness 
so entirely understanding all I meant to say in it, and so 
appreciative, that I was really pleased. 1 She says we met in 
1920, when I defended her from someone's snub, but I quite 
forget that. 

Yes, I like that Coelesti lumine 2 collect very much. You'd 
be surprised at the number of prayers, passages, and psalms 
about light that are collected in my Preces Privatae. I use them 
at Mass. Just now, sitting rather wearily among my rocky 
ruins, I sometimes repeat to myself at Mass those lines from 
Eliot's Ash Wednesday, do you know it? The lines are: 

1 Elizabeth Belloc had written to R. M. about The World my Wilderness. 

2 "Heavenly light." 

75 



" Teach us to sit still 
Even among these rocks, 
Our peace in His will; 
And even among these rocks 
Suffer me not to be separated, 

And let my cry come unto Thee/' 

/ 

No light there, but peace. Then I have O Oriens, splendor lucis 

aeternae . . . veni illumina?- etc., and Emitte lucem tuam, 2 and Et 

mentis nostrae tenebras . . . illustra* and "Grant that the splendour 

of Thy brightness may shine forth upon us, and that the light 

of Thy light . . ." z&dLucerna pedibus meis* and "by the guiding 

radiance of Thy compassion" (Gothic Missal), and other lights, 

that I must add to, come Candlemas. We always went on a 

picnic on Candlemas Day, and it is still one of my favourite 

feasts I wrote about it in Personal Pleasures, I think. But there 

can be no such Candlemasses here and now, without sunshine 

and almond blossom and tiny twisted candles to burn, and the 

procession in the town, and brothers and sisters to feast on the 

hillside with. Those festa days of which Sunday was the most 

often recurrent, always a holiday, always fun, always in one's 

oldest clothes so that one could get wet and climb about how 

lovely they were. They make a kind of radiance in memory. 

And now nearly all that happy fraternal tribe are gone into the 

world of light, as Vaughan says. I do like the Requiem Mass 

in our Altar Missal; we had it this morning for someone. I 

have been trying to get hold of a second-hand copy of that 

book, it has so many good Propers, Introits, etc. It is out of 

print; but the S.P.C.K. has "sheets" of it, unbound, and may 

1 "O Day-spring, brightness of light everlasting (and sun of righteous 
ness); come thou and enlighten (those who sit in darkness and in the shadow 
of death)/' Fifth of the Greater Antiphones. 

2 "Send forth thy light," 

3 "And illumine the darkness of our minds." 

4 "(Thy word is) a lantern unto my feet." Ps. 119. 105. 

7 6 



sell me a set, I hope. 1 The S.SJ.E. here says it is to be reprinted. 
But a new copy would cost too much altogether. If I mayn't 
buy the sheets, I shall ask ... if I may borrow the book in 
August when the Chapel is closed for 2 or 3 weeks and copy 
some of it. It is quite the best I know. Someone in the 
C[hurch] T[imes] complains of the bad translations in 'the 
English MissaP, very justly. Worse is the withholding of the 
Chalice from the laity. I like your rendering of digno: "with 
feelings as little unsuitable as we can manage to put forth/' 
"Digno" is discouragingly too much to aim at. Yes, I too like 
"mysterium" that margin of mystery that is our circum- 
ambience, our doubt, and our faith; is, in fact God and our 
selves. I keep going to memorial services; the last was my 
dear old friend Eddie Marsh; a charming and kind Maecenas 
to young writers and artists. I used to see a lot of him once, 
when he took up Rupert Brooke. He died at 81 a good age. 
Now I must back to my rocks. My love always; I do hope 
you are not too cold, and keep well. Orapro me. 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde Street, W.i 
29th January, 1953! 

My dear Hamilton, 

Your a[ir] p[aper] of 24th to hand this morning, and thank 
you so much. I forget which day I posted my last to you, but 
since then I have had two of yours, i8th and 24th, both most 
welcome. Your Harvard undergraduate did he mean, when 
"he wondered if such events as are described in The M[an] on 
a D[onkey] could bring into being a satisfactory, separated part 

1 The Altar Missal, edited by a Priest of the S.SJ.E. (Mowbray, 1936), is 
sometimes known as the "Cowley Missal." It is normally supplied in sheet 
form, to be bound according to individual needs. 

2 The English Missal for the Laity (W. Knott & Son, London, 1933); a 
translation of the Roman Missal which R. M. often used. 

77 



of the Catholic Church" did he mean, could the events have 
been really as those described, or could our branch of the 
Church be satisfactory ? Or perhaps merely that it was strange 
and wonderful that it should be so. But I agree with you that 
the Reformation had to be; and it was (wasn't it?) supported 
by a very large part of public feeling, which had sickened of 
Church corruptions, Papal interferences, clerical misbehaviour, 
Church services they didn't follow; all that Lollardry had 
been up against a century before. I think general feeling would 
have surged up, in the course of C.i6, and made a reformation. 
So and that is a very interesting thought it was a good thing 
that Cranmer was there, a bulwark against the Puritans, or 
-anyhow making a P[rayer] B[ook] that was this. What 
interesting lines of speculation you suggest! As to Belloc, he 
was, of course, an entirely unscrupulous lying historian, and 
thought only of making a case against Protestantism how 
dared he write a book about Cranmer? 1 "Destruction of the 
hated Mass", indeed! I don't suppose B. had ever studied our 
P.B., or Cranmer's high sacramental communion prayers, both 
translated and composed by him. I was glad T. Maynard put 
him in his place. 2 The R.C.'s have a foolish bigotry about our 
not either having or wanting Sacraments so ignorant of them. 
On Saturday last one of them defaced the Grosvenor Chapel 
noticeboard outside the door, which said " The Priest-in- 
Charge is in church on Fridays 5-6 to hear Confessions", and 
also announced the services. The objector had crossed out 
"priest" and put "parson", and crossed out " Holy Com 
munion", writing " Heresy. See Article 31 " across it in block 
capitals. (I haven't looked up Article 31, and forget which it 
is, but probably the one about " the Romish doctrine of the 
Mass" ; certainly not the one which speaks sacramentally about 
the Sacrament (which I think is 28) . 3 ) How rude and impudent 

1 H. Belloc, Cranmer (1931). 

2 Theodore Maynard (1890-1956), American Roman Catholic writer. 

3 Article 31, "Of the one Oblation of Christ/' states: "Wherefore the 

7 8 



it was ! . . . How incredible that people can be so rude and 
silly. . . . 

I ... lunched last Sunday after Mass with my friend Alan 
Pryce-Jones, the editor of the Times Literary Supplement a 
most attractive youngish man 45, I think, who occasionally 
comes to the Chapel. He made perhaps I told you a very 
brief plunge into Rome last year, but didn't like what he found 
and swam out quickly. And one thing he didn't like was that 
arrogant conviction of having the whole and only truth. 1 My 
old Aunt 2 died this morning (a good thing) and her Vicar is 
having a Vespers for her at All Saints', Netting Hill, to which 
any nephews and nieces who can are going. . . . I'm glad you 
were interested in my father's Bible article. Yes, he did know 
a good deal about Bible translations and Pjrayer] B[ook] ones 
too. And had a great interest in the changes in English down 
the centuries, from Anglo-Saxon on. Would this were more 
wide-spread ! As to the Bible, here is V. S. Pritchett, a very 
able reviewer on the New Statesman saying that Erasmus first 
translated the B. into English! What can he mean? I suppose 
he got confused with E.'s trans : into Latin. But how ignorant. 
Oh dear; here is Finis, before my mind has reached it. Much 
love . . Such a good Requiem Mass this morning 3 for my 
poor old aunt what a lovely mass it is. Did I tell you I have 
now actually got the "Cowley Missal", unbound, in sheets, 
from S.P.C.K. I need you here, to help me bind it. 

R.M. 



sacrifices of Masses, in the which it was commonly said, that the Priest did 
offer Christ for the quick and the dead, to have remission of pain or guilt, 
were blasphemous fables and dangerous deceits." Article 28 concerns "the 
Lord's Supper." 

1 Alan Pryce-Jones comments that R. M. must be referring here to a 
conversation in which he agreed with her doubts about the dogmatic 
position of the [Roman Catholic] Church in regard to the Assumption. He 
adds "I no longer share these doubts to-day" and points out that "the very 
brief plunge " is now " a steady swim." 

2 Mary Macaulay. 8 30th January, the day this letter was posted. 

79 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 

loth February, 1953 f 

(St Scholastica) 

My dear Hamilton, 

Your Candlemas letter came yesterday; thank you so 
much, and for the one of 29 Jan. No, the floods did not come 
nigh me; only the east coast and the Thames estuary. Those 
poor people and the Dutch. The stories are horrifying; 
families who sought safety in their attics, and the sea rose till 
it reached them, and tore away the roof and the attic floor on 
which they sat and washed them out to sea : a father, mother, 
and three children. They were at sea, in that bitter cold, all one 
day; when they were washed to shore the three little children 
were dead of exposure, and the mother died soon afterwards 
only the father left. The Dutch death-roll is much worse, over 
1300; ours only 300-odd, I think. But so many left homeless 
and without possessions. An appeal for clothes and money has 
been made, and I think is being well answered. I drove to the 
Eaton Square W.V.S. with some clothes, and found Church 
Army lorries taking hundreds of sacks away. Some are being 
sent to the Dutch. When I have time I will get Belloc's Great 
Heresies. What does he mean by "reason was given divine 
authority" ? Does he mean the Logos ? I am not sure I shall 
read his Cranmer; I feel it would be annoying and silly and 
untruthful (as you say it is). I have been reading (when I have 
a moment to read anything non-ruinous, which is seldom) a 
book called Elizabethan Recusant Prose, about the writings of 
the English refugee Catholics; 1 the author Alfred Southern 
(R.C.) makes a case for their having written much better prose 
than the Protestant English Elizabethans and Jacobeans. It is a 
strained case he makes; he seems to judge prose mainly by the 
religion of its writer. Actually the Recusant writings (mostly 
apologetics) can't compare with the non-Recusant contem- 
1 A. C. Southern, Elizabethan Recusant Prose, 1559-82 (1950). 

80 



porary prose ; think of the Hakluy t voyagers' stories, 1 Purchas, 2 
Hooker, 3 Ascham, 4 Raleigh, 5 Bacon, 6 etc., etc. His argument 
is that no-one in England wrote "good prose" between More 
and Dry den (another Catholic, of course). And he runs down 
Wycliffe's Bible (often excellent) and ignores Latimer and 
exalts the Douai Bible at the expense of all the English Prot- 
[estant] versions. Tiresome people they are when they argue 
a case. Belloc is one of the worst, of course. I wonder when he 
talks about "reason" as a prerogative of the Catholic Church, 
what he makes of Newman, who wrote " What is intellect 
itself, but a fruit of the Fall, not found in heaven more than in 
little children, and at the utmost but tolerated by the Church. 
Reason is God's gift, but so are the passions." " Faith and 
humility consist not in going about to prove, but in the 
outset confiding in the testimony of others". Mysticism too 
Newman runs down; he depends wholly on the authority of 
the Church. He had no use, apparently, for meditating on 
rationabilia. 1 

That is a nice story about Lady Knevet. 8 I suppose she was 
a Lollard born too late, if she always "kept from the popish 
fc church". One hopes it was the 1549 book she used in her latter 
days. She and Master Tollin were lucky to survive Mary's 
reign! Yes, when did she first feel so Protestant? I suppose 
she approved the Dissolutions. How one would like to meet 
and talk with her as she was in (say) 1500, as a young woman. 
There is a good subject those belated Lollards. No doubt 
they read Wycliffe's Bible, what there was of it and when they 

1 Richard Hakluyt (1553-1616). 

2 Samuel Purchas (1575 ?-i626) author of the Pilgrimes. 

3 Richard Hooker (1554 ?-i6oo) author of The Laws ofEcclesiastical Polity. 

4 Roger Ascham (1515-1568) author of The Schoolmaster. 

5 Sir Walter Raleigh (i552?-i6i8). 6 Francis Bacon (1561-1626). 

7 Some readers of Newman's works would disagree with K. M/s 
conclusions. 

8 See John Foxe's Acts and Monuments of Matters Happening in the Church 
(1563), commonly known as Foxe's Book of Martyrs, Bk. xn, "The Lady 
Knevet, of "Wymondham in Norfolk." 

8l 



could get it. And delighted to see Cromwell's hacking down of 
papistical trash in the churches. I have never read Foxe. We 
didn't have it at home, and I think would never have been 
allowed to read such horrors. Nor have I wished to since; I 
always avoid tortures when possible. (History is frightful, 
because one can't really avoid them, they are everywhere.) 
I think you are right about the right timing of our Reformation. 
But how unpalatable a thing it was anyhow; if the timing was 
right, the manner was hideously wrong. I mean the Monasteries 
and Churches and Abbeys. I wish it hadn't happened. We 
could have reformed English Catholicism without it, and 
might now have a beautiful branch of that tree. But, of course, 
we have. Only some of its expressions are pretty poor, or seem 
so to us. I have had my Altar Missal bound in strong brown 
soft cardboard covers; it looks quite nice, and is firm. I do 
enjoy that book. Do you know The People's Missal (Mowbray, 
1916) now out of print? 1 A v.g. little book, I wish I had it, 
but have only been lent it. By Rev. E. A. L. Clarke, A.K.C. 
(whatever that means). 2 There's a lot in it. No more now ! ! 

Much love, 
R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde Street, W.i. 

Ash Wednesday 
i&th February, 1953 f 

My dear Hamilton, 

I do hope that by now, in fact, many days ago, you had 
my letter answering your two of Jan. 30 and Feb. 4 (I forget 
the date of mine). And now I have yours of the I2th, which 
rather disquieted rne, as it sounds as if you felt not too vigorous. 

1 A second and revised edition of The Peoples Missal (Mowbray, 1929) 
went out of print in 1950. 

2 Associate of King's College, London. 

82 



When you feel a shrinking from letter-writing (and how well 
I know that!) I'm sure you ought not to write, it is a real 
nervous strain and exhaustion, especially when you write 
several together. I find it tires me when I could write my own 
work for hours; it is a drain on one's time and energies 
that I resent. Still, they have to be written in the end; or 
some of them have. When you leave a long gap in your 
letters to me, I shall know why it is, and be very approving. 
Reading, collecting prayers, binding books, are much less 
tiring. 

I have had to make a Lent resolution, not to be broken, to 
answer necessary letters and not let them He by. I am trying 
to take Lent seriously this year, though I don't go without food, 
it wouldn't be healthy. The arrangement of time is more to 
the point. And keeping accounts, and sticking to hours of 
prayer all that. Except for early Mass I didn't do any church 
to-day; had I more time, I would like to have gone to All 
Saints' [Margaret Street] for the Ashes Mass at n ; I have never 
been at this service. Being a one-priest chapel, we can't have 
such elaborate affairs at the Grosvenor. Though we do have 
blessing of the palms on Palm Sunday. 

Yes, people do take sides about the Reformation people. 
(Though I am rather surprised at Westcott 1 not disapproving 
of, at least, Cromwell; a very base and cruel man.) Similarly, 
R.C. writers, such as Alfred Southern, whose Recusant Prose I 
was reading lately, can see no ill in More (and there really was 
some he was very rude and unjust to Tyndale) . . . People 
are interesting largely because so mixed in character, bad 
and good together; though it isn't easy to see the good 
in Cromwell. But Cranmer had so much that was admirable; 
and one is for ever grateful to him for his liturgical style. 

Yes, it is interesting to read of the religious feelings of those 
ordinary Marian Protestants. They were very strong and con 
vinced. They felt they had at last really got hold of the 
X B. F. Westcott (1825-1901), Bp of Durham. 

83 



Christian religion, so presented that they could understand and 
lay hold of it, and they didn't mean to let it go. The burnings 
had a tremendous effect on the popular mind, of course, and 
I suppose gave the English a Protestant bias for centuries to 
come. To many those cruelties were their only experience of 
Catholicism; the sailors who sailed the Spanish main brought 
home shocking tales of torture, etc., "the inquisition dogs and 
the devildoms of Spain", 1 and national and religious feeling 
were all mixed up. I think Margery Kempe 2 would probably 
have been a fervent Protestant in the i6th century, don't you, 
and have joined in that Norfolk supplication, 3 with much 
weeping. 

I suppose most people have to be one-sided and fanatic 
about religion, if they are zealous at all. It shocks one when one 
reads history. So many didn't even try to see the good in the 
other point of view. Well, we have become more tolerant and 
less persecuting, if less zealous. 

I, like you, have been collecting fresh collects, etc., from the 
Missal and Breviaries; I ought to learn more by heart, as one 
hasn't always got the words at hand. But I am still so hard- 
pressed, so jungle-drowned, in ruins that I haven't much time 
for learning anything. 

It is late, and one of my resolves is earlier bed, so I must stop 
writing and go there. 

There is a great new translation of the Bible on hand; a 
professor of King's College London is working on it. A 
friend of his showed him my father's Quarterly article, 4 which 
interested him. It will be a really fresh translation, from the 
original Hebrew and Greek, unburdened by echoes of the 

1 See Tennyson, " The Revenge." 

2 English mystic (c. 1373-after 1433), author of the Book of Margery 
Kempe. 

3 A Supplication signed by Protestants in Norfolk and Suffolk c. 1556; 
see Foxe's Book of Martyrs, Bk. xn. 

4 G. C. Macaulay, "The English Bible," in The Quarterly Review 
(October, 1911). See Letters to a Friend, p. 116. 

84 



existing ones. So is R V. Rieu's Penguin N[ew] T[estament], 
but this seems too colloquial, I think. 1 

Much love. I hope you aren't really more tired than you 
say. 

Yours always, 
R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.I 
2%th February, 1953 1 

My dear Hamilton, 

Your letter of 22nd came to-day, just as I was about to 
answer that of i6th. Thank you so much for both. You are 
right in saying I meant to have done with Ruins a year ago; 
indeed I did, but here I am, still struggling with them. But the 
end is in sight, if I keep at them. There is always a page of 
them half-typed in my typewriter, preventing me from using 
same to type a letter to you ! I am interested in what you say 
about Foxe's Martyrs, poor heroic people. How lamentable 
the persecutors were, how glorious the persecuted on all sides. 
How could people put themselves into that wickedly cruel 
position, in the name of the Church ? It passes our modern 
understanding. Thank heaven for our greater humanity, at 
least. Yes, the Church had failed indeed. One can see that from 
all the writings before the Reformation Chaucer, Langland, 
every writer except the mystical enclosed such as Rolle, 2 
Hilton, 3 a Kempis, 4 Juliana of Norwich. 5 Did you ever come 
across the Ancren Riwle, that very interesting and rather 
charming set of rules for the guidance of some young ladies of 

1 E. V. Rieu, The Four Gospels (1952). 

2 Richard Rolle of Hampole (c. 1295-1349), English hermit and mystic. 

3 "Walter Hilton (d. 1396), English monk; author of the Scale of Perfection. 

4 Thomas a Kempis (c. 1380-1471). 

5 Julian of Norwich (c. 1342-after 1413), English anchoress; author of 
The Sixteen Revelations of Divine Love. 

85 



good family in the I3th century about 150 years before 
Chaucer, I think who wanted to form a little religious 
community ? It is in English (one of the earliest post-Conquest 
English writings) and one of the first and best examples of early 
Middle English. It is very engaging. My father was editing it 
when he died; his work has been of great use to other scholars, 
but was unfinished. 1 There, I suppose, was the Church at its 
best. It had to be in English, because, said its author, women 
know little of Latin. I suppose the teaching of Latin (and 
Greek) to English girls of the nobility only began much with 
the Renaissance. And, after about a century, unfortunately died 
out except in exceptional cases, until the mid-ipth century and 
the Higher Education of women. As to Bible v. Church, I 
suppose both those two exclusive views made their ultimate 
synthesis (anyhow in the Anglican Church, for I think the 
dissenting churches incline too much to the one, and the R.C/s 
to the other) and luckily "God fulfils himself in many ways, 
Lest one good custom should corrupt the world", 2 and one 
needs all the facets of truth. That book of David Mathew's is, 
I suppose, the one he wrote some time ago; I have it. 3 He has 
another Charles I book in hand, 4 and is dedicating it to me, 

which is nice of him He is so intelligent and scholarly 

and I think must feel as Fr said to someone about the 

Assumption dogma, " This isn't going to help us". He makes 
kindly fun of Belloc's theories. . . . 

That Collect (Lent 3, Friday) ; I like your "constant saving 
existence for us", but isn't it better than its original? 5 Well, I 
don't see why it shouldn't be. It is much stronger than "always 
prove wholesome to us", which I suppose would be more 

1 G. C. Macaulay, "The Ancren Riwle," in The Modem Language Review 
(January, April, July, October, 1914). 

2 See Tennyson's Idylls of the King, "The Passing of Arthur." 

3 The Age of Charles I (1951). 

4 Scotland under Charles I (1955). 

5 "... nolis salutaria semper existent"; see the Secrete for Friday of the 
3rd week in Lent. 

86 



literal, but neither so euphonious nor so strong. I shall adopt 
yours. 

My sister asks, what does the Bp of Bristol (Cockin) 1 mean 
when he says .he "repents" of the disunited Church. Does he 
mean he feels personally that he is doing wrong about it ? If 
so (she asks) why doesn't he amend, so far as he personally can ? 
But I think what he feels is not quite repentance but a kind of 
collective guilt. He is not, probably, prepared to lead the way 
in abolishing barriers and proclaiming one united Christian 
Church because he thinks some of the barriers are right. He 
wants unity, but not to pay the price of surrender of Church 
principles. But he feels guilty, as I do about (say) war, and the 
preparation of terrible weapons; I can do nothing about it, 
having no power, but I feel guilty. Also about poverty. There 
is a very real sense in that one feels the guilt of one's human 
community, its dreadful cruelty and selfishness, while all one 
can mend is one's own individual share. 

I am reading, when I have any reading time, Steven 
Runciman's History of the Crusades, the first of 3 volumes of it. 
It is fascinating reading. Those dreadful Crusaders incredible 
barbarians. I have just been reading of their sack of Jerusalem, 
1099; every inhabitant men, women and children was mas 
sacred, and they thought it right, those people being infidels. 
I suppose really they enjoyed it, as soldiers let loose in a con 
quered city always have until lately, and rationalized it by 
saying it was pleasing to God. On the other hand Saladin, 
retaking the city 80 years later, was very civilized and con 
siderate. Very shaming for us! After the massacre the 
Crusaders held a thanksgiving service in the Holy Sepulchre 
Church; rather like Pius V 2 striking a medal in thanks for the 
Massacre of St Bartholomew. Can one translate sanctificationi- 
bus by one word? (See Post-Communion collect for to-day, 

1 Rt. Rev. E A. Cockin. 

2 Pope Gregory XIII, not Pius V. 

87 



Saturday.) 1 Does "sanctities" do? "Holies" is obsolete 
(except in "holy of holies"). I must look at that Pjrayer] 
Bfook] chapter in that French book. Oh yes, I am well placed 
in my unique chapel, indeed. In Cyprus, I hope to worship in 
Greek churches they do accept us, don't they ? 2 I should like 
to get acquainted with their Rite. Much love always. Lots 
more to say, but seems impracticable ! Your loving 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
March, I953t 



My dear Hamilton, 

Thank you for two good letters, of March 2 and 7. I feel 
it is rather a shame, you always write the day before you get a 
letter from me, and then you feel you must write again to 
answer it. Since I wrote, on Feb 28, 1 have been having flue 
a mild attack, from which I am practically recovered, but 
still in bed; up to-morrow, I hope. I shall write badly, there 
fore, and you will be able to read even less than usual of my 
weighty remarks no great loss, as you know. I am very 
pleased to hear of the new R.C. fasting rules, and directly I 
can get there will go to Duckett and at least turn the pages of 
the number of Worship* in which it is set out. I must ask ... 
[a Roman Catholic friend] about it, too. But she has a 
notion that, as she is over 60, no fasting rules apply to her. 4 
I like the idea of those evening communions, that admirable 
Evangelical service that we little thought ever to see flourishing 
in Rome. I mentioned it to [an Anglican friend] ... the other 
day, and said I wondered how soon we should follow this 

1 Ember Saturday in Lent. 2 See below, p. p6. 

3 A periodical published by the Monks of St John's Abbey, Collegeville, 
Minn. 

4 The Roman Catholic Church does dispense with the fasting rule for 
those over 60. 

88 



example. He said, " Oh no doubt when father says turn, we 
shall turn" ; and I now expect that we shall. Really we are 
unnecessarily obsequious, don't you think, to that other branch 
of the Church. I'd like to know what Worship says about Lent 
and Easter, toou 

Yes, those poor good fasting mass-priests it [must] have 
been very straining for them. I wonder if your father did it, 
or was he a little before the time when they became so 
rigorous P 1 

I have been reading Rosalind Murray's Further Journey*, her 
second book about Roman Catholicism (the first was The 
Good Pagan 3 ). It interests me, and she is very fair about her 
religion and Protestantism and agnosticism (she insists still on 
calling this "paganism", which is quite silly; but she means her 
father's brand of high-minded humanist liberal agnosticism). 
She thinks these "pagans" have at least as high a standard of 
ethics and behaviour as R.C.s, if not higher; in fact, I gather 
she thinks it usually is higher, but she seems to mean only 
the best type of gentlemanly agnostic, and to be comparing 
him with the common rim of often rather poor characters 
which make up the mass of R.C.s, and she quotes "an eminent 
prelate" as having said that cheating the customs was not sin 
at all, only ungentlemanly. Considering that it involves hard 
lying, you'd think that any Christian (as well as any decent 
non-Christian) must know it is sin; but she seems to think that 
many R.C.S think a shady deal like that is less sinful than not 
going to Mass on Sundays. I must say she is very candid about 
the defects of her Church. All the same, she believes that it is 
the channel of grace and that this grace is more important than 
ethical principles. "Wouldn't you say that one purpose of the 
grace is to create right ethical principles ? Grace to "perceive 

1 Presumably this refers to the strict fasting rules of the Tractarians, 
applied to priests celebrating at a late hour. 

2 The Further Journey: In the End is my Beginning (1953). 
8 The Good Pagans Failure (1939). 

89 



and know what things we ought to do", and to perform the 
same? If I didn't think that, I couldn't be a Christian at all; 
it would seem a mockery of all Christ taught, and all that the 
Holy Spirit teaches. 

I must read Spanish Tudor. 1 I wonder what she makes of 
Mary. Of course we can't judge them by modern standards; 
our squeamishness about cruelty and pain is comparatively a 
modern growth. 

I haven't met Maurice Ashley, but have always heard a lot 
about him; he does know his lyth century. I must get his 
Penguin. 2 Though not yet, my hands being so full with 
archaeological and other ruinous works. How lovely some 
Mosques are ! But all over Persia they are crumbling to decay, 
their porcelain tiles fallen, their melon domes broken. Moslems 
seem apathetic; and the Persian mosques are nearly all built of 
clay. One feels that a Mosque is better perfect, and takes ruin 
less well than Greek or Christian temples. 

I suppose I am lucky, this flue of mine having been so mild. 
Jeanie had it very badly, with bronchitis and then jaundice. 
I hope your old Aunt Katie 3 has evaded it. I'm sure she loves 
drama and catastrophes I think all old ladies do ! I remember 
how my grandmother revelled in them. After all, their lives 
are pretty dull and quiet. I don't feel, do you, that Stalin's 
death is going to affect the world. I feel my temperature may 
be rising a little, so will stop this. On Tuesday next John 
Betjeman has planned a "corporate Communion" in Dr Joad's 
sickroom. Several of his friends, and me too. . . . 

Much love 
R.M. 



1 H. F. M. Prescott, Spanish Tudor (1940). 

2 Maurice Ashley, England in the Seventeenth Century (Penguin Books, 
1952). 

3 Mrs Catharine B. Johnson. 

90 



[Postmark: London, W.i] 
30th March, 1953 f 

My dear Hamilton, 

Thank you so much for your letters of i6th and 25th. I last 
wrote to you on I4th, as you say, from bed. I ... got about 
soon again, but rather weak in the head. 

No, I won't write you "treatises'*, I didn't really mean my 
letters to be that, but I suppose I was interested in what I'd been 
reading, or perhaps in something you wrote, and meandered 
on and on. And perhaps when in bed I felt I had more time 
than usual. Now we are arrived in Holy Week. I got a blessed 
palm yesterday, for the first time in my life. Last Palm Sunday 
I was in bed; and in '51 I didn't, I remember, feel that I had 
got quite as far as palms yet. I have now, and liked getting it 
and keeping it. I believe they are burnt on Holy Saturday and 
the ashes used for the fire and candles service or is it next year ? 
Yes, I think we keep our palm crosses for a year, don't we? 1 
I think of going on Easter Eve 'to the Blessing of the Candles at 
All Saints', Margaret St. ... It is followed by midnight Mass 
(rather a new plan, I gather) but I think I shan't stay for that, 
but go on Easter morning to my own conventicle; I shouldn't 
really like to make my Easter communion anywhere else. 

That is interesting about the psychological origins of the 
Reformation I must get hold of it. It does sound a reasonable 
supposition that the Church services were felt to be un 
intelligible and inaudible to the majority. By the way, why 
were they read so inaudibly? And sometimes are still? I 
suppose to emphasise the mystery of the Faith. But very bad 
for the intelligence of the congregation, who can never have 
learned to follow; I suppose they told their beads during the 
service, as Italians do now. Of course there was a very strong 

1 Traditionally the palm crosses are kept until Shrove Tuesday the 
following year, when they are handed in and burnt, and the ashes used in 
Ash Wednesday services. 

91 



subjective element in Catholicism, as one sees from the 
medieval books of devotion. Too much stress, I think, laid on 
devotional feelings and ecstasies. I was looking at a little French 
R.C. manual that had been left in Grosvenor Chapel; the tone 
of rather mawkish sweetness, its talk of "delicious visits to the 
Holy Sacrament", is rather repugnant. It reminds me of the 
way the nuns talked at our convent school, which we thought 
very foolish ! 

The public is much enjoying the obsequies of Queen Mary; 
they file all day past the coffin, and will do so all night. Women 
even shed tears, which seems affected for someone they never 
met and who was nearly 86. Royalty has a hypnotising effect 
on our nation, and considering what real tragedies go on all the 
time the deaths of the young on the roads and in battle, the 
massacres in Kenya, the plight of the refugees, the cruel 
injustices inflicted on Africans in S. Africa (one has just been 
sentenced to 15 lashes and a year's gaol for some criticism of the 
government) it is these things, and the preparations for war, 
that we should cry for, not the quite normal death of an old 
lady just because she has been a queen-consort. I can't under 
stand it. Canon Collins of St Paul's has just sent me a letter to 
The Times for my signature, protesting against the treatment 
of Africans; he wants to get about 50 people, of different 
professions and opinions, to sign. 1 He is a vigorous kind of 
Canon. 

No, don't bother to send me magazines. I imagine they 
don't always reach me. I haven't yet had time to go to 
Duckett and see Worship on the new fasting rules. My 
[Roman Catholic friend] . . . says they don't affect midnight 
masses, and that one could always eat up to midnight if the 
communion was just after midnight. 2 

I too like adding to my Prayer Notebooks. The last thing 

1 See The Times, 8th April, 1953, "Sentence on an African/* 

2 Evidently a misunderstanding, as the 3-hour fasting rule applies to all 
Masses. 

92 



I copied was part of Isaiah, chap. 58, about the right kind of 
fast, and the way to make the Light break on our dark minds. 1 
I have got some good Latin collects lately, too. Much love 
you can't think how much I value your prayers and good 
wishes. But I do hope I haven't written another treatise! 
I am still working much too hard. I fly to Cyprus May 
i6th. 

Are you well? My love. 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde Street, W.i 
2ist April, 1953 f 

My dear Hamilton, 

What ages since I wrote! I have had your two letters 
Good Friday and Easter Monday lying on my writing-table, 
and have tried for the last week and more to answer them, but 
each day, and each hour, have been driven down and under by 
the pressure of work, etc. I still am, having pledged myself to 
deliver Ruins before I depart on May i6th. I really ought to get 
rid of it by about the loth, to have a week for journey pre 
parations, visas, and what not. But I shan't, unless I work even 
more strenuously than I have lately been doing. I have been 
doing late night shifts, which is exhausting ; but what can I do ? 
However, a month hence I shall be clambering about Cyprus 
mountains, viewing crusaders' castles, monasteries, churches, 
and antiquities in general. I plan to trip over to the Lebanon 
coast, and possibly thence into Israel, but the Lebanon-Israel 
frontier is an iron curtain, it seems. I have a 2nd passport, 
endorsed only for Israel, which the Lebanese must not see, so 
fiercely do they feel against their neighour and really who 
shall blame them ? It would be very thrilling to be in Palestine, 
wouldn't it, [and] possibly to visit Galilee, and Nazareth? 1 

. 58.6-12. 

93 



shall write to you from Cyprus. You won't be able to write 
to me, as I shall have no fixed address, though " Poste Restante, 
Famagusta" would find me in the end. But I don't advise you 
to write. I am telling my sister the same, i.e. not to write unless 
there is anything urgent. 

Thank you very much indeed for your two good letters. 
Did I tell you I went to an Easter Vigil Candle-Blessing on 
Easter Eve, at St Cyprian's [Clarence Gate] ? It was at 6, not 
a late one, and I didn't go to Midnight Mass. 

I liked the service, it was very charming, and the font- 
blessing, though got wet from the sprinkling. Of course it's 
all too objective for me; the idea that the water, when blessed, 
actually assumes qualities in itself. It's not my view; I expect 
too Protestant for it ! Perhaps I feel the same about the Host. 
This is, I fear, quite un-Catholic of me. But it doesn't take 
anything away from the gift or the mystery, really; it remains 
the remedium sempiternum. 1 

I have just been reading in the newspaper about a priest 
who refused communion to a woman at the altar rail, closing 
her outstretched hands as he passed her, because he mistook 
her for a woman who had been divorced. Surely this is very 
shocking. I mean, to refuse any one who comes up, unless they 
are drunk and disorderly. If they want communion, even if 
they are doing wrong, surely they ought to be given it. The 
woman is making a fuss with the Bishop about it; he, 
apparently directed the priest to excommunicate the divorced 
persons in his parish. I wonder if he would take the same line 
with swindlers. 

I am glad your brother 2 in S. Africa is in peace . . . But 
the loss of brothers and sisters must give a pang; one has shared 
so much with them, it goes down to the roots of life. 

I saw Graham Greene's new play the other day; 3 it is most 
interesting, and leaves everyone discussing what he meant by 

1 "Everlasting cure." 2 Kenneth Cowper Johnson. 

3 The Living Room. 

94 



it, and whether it is for the Church or against it, on the whole. 
I shall like to see what The Tablet says of it. ... 

My love always, 
R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
9th May, 1953! 

My dear Hamilton, 

I am shockingly late in answering your delightful letter 
posted April 28th. I have been living pretty hectically, and this 
next week will be worse, as I fly on Saturday i6th. If ever you 
sent me an air letter (same as usual, same postage) to " Poste 
Restante, Famagusta, Cyprus" (though, as I feel sure there are 
cities of that name in the U.S., I don't know if you should make 
it clear that you mean this Mediterranean isle the P.O. will 
know; but I expect "Cyprus" is enough) well, as I was saying, 
I should be overjoyed, and shall, anyhow, write to you, if only 
p.c.s, to keep you posted in my doings and seeings. How good 
the second lesson for Evensong yesterday is, about St Paul & 
Co/s perilous voyaging round those parts Alexandria, 1 Sidon, 
Cyprus, then that gale and storm that threw them broken on 
Crete told in such a sailorly way (as my Macaulay grandfather, 2 
who was a sailor before he took orders, used, I believe, to say). 
But I, flying serenely and with a rapidity S. Paul and my grand 
father equally never dreamed of, through the heavens, shall 
leave England at 8 a.m. and alight in Cyprus, dry and safe, at 
8 that evening. Mir a fides? how lovely it will all be. I have 
visas (and plans) for Lebanon, Israel, Jordan, Greece, Asia 
Minor coast (opposite island of Rhodes); and kind friends have 
loaded me with useful introductions, so that I shall have 

1 St Paul did. not visit Alexandria, but part of this second voyage was 
made in "a ship of Alexandria," see Acts 27. 6. 

2 Rev. S. H. Macaulay (1807^. 1873). 3 "Strange but true." 

95 



facilities for getting about, I hope. I look forward greatly to 
Palestine Jerusalem, Nazareth, Lake of Galilee, Sea of 
Tiberias, etc. Will it make the Gospels more alive to me, I 
wonder ? Not that they arent alive; but it may add the vivid 
ness of visual imagination. 

I shall miss the Chapel and Daily Mass very much. I shall 
go to Greek services, and Latin. Anglican ? I'm not sure ! Not 
if the Greeks admit us to communion but I must find out. 1 
Though nothing is usually duller than the churches of C. of E. 
colonies abroad. But there may be a good one on Cyprus that 
I shall like. I must try and keep up a little religious life; rather 
difficult, in the exciting circumstances which will take the 
whole of one's mind absorbing them. But they can be made 
part of the other. 

I am interested in your i8th century readings. Have you 
included Tom Jones'? And Richardson ? 2 They are all so much 
wordier than we are now. I agree about Hardy: he is, on the 
whole, quite unreal. Where he is good is in atmosphere and 
landscape oh yes, and some of the village scenes too. But his 
chief characters seem to me all sentimentalized. 

Ascension Day on Thursday; and two days after it I fly. 
Whitsunday either in Cyprus or Lebanon or Israel, it depends 
how the Cyprus steamers go to those lands. I'm told it will be 
very hot. No thick clothes needed. Odd, in the N[ew] T[esta- 
ment] so little weather comment. A storm on the lake no sun, 
no rain, no cold. I must stop. All my love and thanks. 

R.M. 
I do hope you are, and will go on being, well. 



1 No intercommunion with the Anglican Church is recognised by the 
Orthodox Church. 

2 Samuel Richardson (1689-1761), author of Clarissa Harlowe, etc. 



Famagusta 
ijth May, 1953! 

My dear Hamilton, 

I got your letter of the loth in good time to take it with 
me when I flew off at crack of dawn yesterday. I had a smooth 
and beautiful journey, and got to Cyprus at 8 p.m. One night 
in Nicosia, and now here for a week. After that, my move 
ments are vague, but I am still having letters forwarded to 
Famagusta [as] I don't yet know my dates for Lebanon and 
Palestine and Rhodes. It is all very exciting and very beautiful. 
Famagusta is an old walled crusaders' city, but nothing left of it 
now but the walls, the citadel (Othello's supposed tower), and 
the great Gothic cathedral made a mosque by the Turks when 
they conquered Cyprus in the i6th century, and still a mosque 
all whitewashed within, carpeted, all ornaments and altars 
and stained glass gone, and Moslems in corners saying their 
prayers aloud. Near the cathedral stand the ruins of a few 
medieval churches, and some domed Moslem buildings; all 
the multitude of churches and convents gone that were there 6 
and 7 centuries ago, when Famagusta was a fine rich luxurious 
city. Now all is desolation, a littered waste, thistles and grass 
and palms and the sighing of the sea beyond the massive wall. 
I have hired a self-drive car, as there seems no other way of 
getting about Cyprus. No buses, no railways scarcely; one 
must either bicycle, walk, or drive. This morning I saw 
Nicosia, the little capital; it too has a great church turned 
mosque. The municipal elections are on, and the hotel manager 
warned me to be careful, I might get killed I asked why. He 
said Cypriotes got excited and stampeded. How unlike 
municipal elections in London ! However, the streets seemed 
to me very quiet. 

I like your "steering past the monsters" much better than 
the other. Yes, it does seem likely that the composer had sea 

97 



monsters in mind. The metaphor of steering is excellent, and 
rather beautiful. What nice things you find. I always like the 
old use of monstrous in the sense of " full of monsters," like 
"the bottom of the monstrous deep", where Lycidas lay. I shall 
use "vitiorum monstra devitare" 1 myself. How prosaic most 
collect-translators are ! (Not Cranmer, however.) About Wm 
Law: I agree with you that his notion of absolute renunciation 
goes too far, and is too ascetic. What I like so much about him 
is his ideas about God and Christ as our saviour saving us 
not in our sins (like the Evangelical view) but from them; and 
the bringing of our wills into harmony with Christ, so that 
we may desire that which is good, and not be double-minded. 
He puts all that so very well. Quite a lot in him I ignore, of 
course. 

Now I must take this down and get it posted. It brings 
my love I wish I had time to finish the page, but haven't if it 
is to go out at 8. 

They called for my Book at 4.30 the day before yesterday. 
I had just done it up. I then began to pack, and was up all night 
nearly. I still have one more chapter to write on my return. 
Yours with much love. 

R.M. 



Cyprus 
2nd June, 195 3 f 

My dear Hamilton, 

This is a heavenly island! I think I wrote to you before 
from Famagusta; now I am at Kyrenia, but leaving this week 
for Beirut, Lebanon, Palestine. Then back here, then Rhodes, 
then home (by end of June). It is really gloriously beautiful 
here, and tremendously interesting. Famagusta is a remarkable 

1 "Eschew all forms of vice," from the Prayer for die Sovereign (used 
in England only) in the Roman Missal. 



old place, and near it are the ruins of ancient Salamis, where St 
Barnabas is buried; he was a native of it. Then there is Paphos, 
where Aphrodite arrived in her shell, and where St Paul con 
verted the Governor. 1 Wonderful Greek and Roman ruins all 
about. And now Kyrenia, by the sea (perfect bathing) and 
under the mountain range of Troodos; St. Hilarion's medieval 
castle is up in the mountains above us, and Bellapais Abbey 
both of extreme beauty, both ruined crusader buildings. In the 
harbour here there is another crusader castle. I like the 
Cypriotes so much, they are so gay and friendly. The Anglican 
churches seem deplorable, I can't go into them, they are built 
of grey porridge. On Whit Sunday I went to a Greek Mass at 
the Greek church at Paphos. The Bishop of Paphos preached, 
with eloquence, but I didn't follow all of it! Sin came in 
(against it, he was) and church-going (for it). But I liked the 
service. The island is full of old Byzantine medieval churches, 
some with charming wall-paintings of the medieval centuries. 
And some Latin churches of the crusaders, some have been 
turned into mosques, however. 

I look forward to Syria and Palestine. Don't be surprised 
if you get no letters, as the air mail (not being British like 
Cyprus) will probably be no good. I will write if I can, though. 
I am very well and sunburnt and gay. I have made several 
acquaintances among the residents and visitors here some are 
rather raffish young men, of the type who are apt to congregate 
in Mediterranean islands, and are not much approved of by the 
British residents. 

The Coronation service came to us on the BBC fairly well, 
and was impressive. How glad I am to be away from the 
madding crowds ! Cyprus is full of the gods of Olympus as 
well as of the Byzantine, Roman, and Turkish forms of wor 
ship : it gets to feel rather the same, a kind of merger the 
Light that lighteth every man. But I belong to the best 
company, though it makes little show here. I am going to- 
1 See Acts 13. 12. 
99 



morrow up into the mountains (in a car) to see painted 
Byzantine churches. How lucky I am ! Much love. Or a pro 
me. 

R.M. 



Jerusalem 
e, I953t 



My dear Hamilton, 

I last wrote to you from Cyprus; since then I have had a 
marvellous and interesting time. I spent a fortnight or so in 
Cyprus (superb bathing, crusader castles, ancient Greek things 
. . .) then crossed to Beirut, on the Lebanon coast, and all about 
Lebanon and Syria, being very nobly entertained by people 
to whom I had letters, and others. I was driven out into 
desert places to see Baalbek and Palmyra, and down the coast 
to Tyre and Sidon (of both [of] which there is much more left 
above ground than Isaiah and Ezekiel would have wished), and 
to Tortosa and its crusader castle and cathedral, both now made 
squalid by Saracens. 1 Then I came south to Damascus, Amman 
(Rabbath-Ammon of the Old Testament, at the siege of 
which David did his dirty trick on Uriah). 2 It is in a rocky and 
mountainous land, and a few miles off on all sides ancient cities 
stand in ruin, and are being excavated; some of them I went 
out to with archaeologists in cars or jeeps. Round Amman 
and Jericho there are terrifying camps of the poor Palestinian 
refugees, driven out of their country by the Jews, and living 
in camps, supported by United Nations no work, no life, 
nothing but existence. The children have evil, cunning, 
ferocious little faces, and stone foreigners like me. If ever I 
saw a criminal community in the making, it is that; there 
seems no solution and no hope. The Arab-Israel hate is 

1 See R.. M.'s Pleasure of Ruins, p. 446. 

2 "Kabbah," see 2 Sam. 11. i. 

IOO 



frightening. We ought never to have sanctioned the Israel 
invasion. 

I am now in Jerusalem (yesterday I came) staying practically 
in the Anglican Cathedral, in a hostel frequented by rather 
mousey, nice people rather of the church-worker type. The 
Bishop 1 is in England, and his clergy carry on. They have 
7 a.m. daily Mass, not quite what I am used to in Grosvenor 
Chapel (plain P[rayer] Bfook]) but it is Mass, and, after long 
Mass-less-ness, it is good to have it. I haven't seen much of 
Jerusalem yet, and don't know that I like it v. much (except for 
the Rock), it's so got up for the tourist. One of the clergy here 
advises doing the things in chronological order, going through 
Our Lord's last week; but space-order takes less time. The 
Garden of Gethsemane has several huge churches, all showy: 
R.C., Russian, and United Nations; and the tomb of the 
B.V.M. is at hand (when it was built, in the 4th c., they hadn't 
yet invented the Assumption) and the Mount of Olives 
is behind. I would rather see all this alone, but one is pestered 
by guides. Then there is thfe Via Dolorosa, along which 
Franciscans process every Friday; and I must go to Bethlehem 
and Nazareth and the Dead Sea. Then across the frontier into 
Israel (for which I have a second passport), to see Galilee, Lake 
of Tiberias, and some castles round Haifa. From Haifa I cross 
back to Cyprus, and my plane leaves Cyprus for London on 
July ist. I am very well, and it's not usually too hot. I do 
hope you are well? It's much too long since I heard. Much 
love from your affectionate 

R.A1 



1 Rt Rev. W. H. Stewart 

101 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.I 
nth July, I953t 

My dear Hamilton, 

I got home last week, to find your letter of June 2yth 
awaiting me. Next morning my wireless got spontaneous 
combustion and set my sitting-room alight, and it burnt down 
a lot of pictures, furniture, curtains, carpet, etc., before the 
firemen could extinguish it, also a few books and papers, and 
the heat was so great that my big glass-fronted bookcase broke 
its glass front. The builders haven't yet got to work on re 
decorating (that is my landlord's job, of course) and heaven 
knows how long they will be. Meanwhile I live in my bed 
room, encumbered with books and papers and furniture, and 
the pictures have gone away to have their canvas repaired 
where possible, their glass mended (and frames), and the sofa 
is going away for re-covering and two tables for repairing and 
polishing, and the hair carpet for restoring if possible, if not I 
must have another. Luckily I am covered; I was afraid my 
insurance had run out, but it just hadn't. Of course the 
insurance won't pay for everything, as things cost so much 
more now than when I bought them; but I hope not to be 
utterly ruined. It is all very tiresome and uncomfortable, and 
my proofs are pouring in and I ought to be writing my last 
chapter, but it is very difficult in these circumstances. However, 
to soothe myself I think with joy of Cyprus and the Levant. 
Since I last wrote to you I have been over the frontier at 
Jerusalem, from Arab land to Israel, and then on into the whole 
State of Israel, the lake of Galilee, where I stayed in a Franciscan 
convent at Tiberias, high above the lake; it was very beautiful. 
Lovely bathing, and I drove round the lake to Capernaum, 
which is just a little group of ruins with a little church near, 
with a mosaic of loaves and fishes. Galilee was indescribably 
beautiful. Then I saw Nazareth, and so to the coast, where 1 

102 



saw Acre, Tortosa, Caesarea (now a few ruins above the sea), 
Askelon (also a heap of ruins) and the new capital Tel Aviv, a 
horrid modern city. On that side of the frontier I heard, of 
course, the Jewish point of view, after the furious diatribes I 
had heard about' them from the evicted Arabs. I liked the 
Children of Israel, and I liked the Arabs, and there seems no 
solution of their quarrel. The Jews are making a good thing 
of their new State, if they can get hold of enough money. I 
returned from Tel Aviv to Cyprus on June 20, and had a few 
more days there before flying home in a rather limping plane 
that kept having to retrace its steps and held us up at Athens 
for a while. I certainly did have an eyeful and a mindful of 
beauty and interest, also of sunshine. Now I am back in the 
cold damp of an English July, and am just getting used again 
to never feeling quite warm enough. I am working uncom 
fortably hard, which would perhaps be more difficult if it was 
hot. . . . 

I will read C. Dawson's Oxford Movement* And the 
Newman Letters 2 again; I can't have read them for years. His 
reactions to the places he saw were, as I remember them, all 
part of religion to him; was he ever carried away by sheer 
sensuous beauty, with no religious afterthought? I imagine 
not. My reactions to the Palestine and Syrian country, apart 
from its clear, fine-drawn beauty of line and colour, were to 
deepen my sense of the essentially Syrian life they led there, and 
of the Eastern origins of the Christian church. I see what you 
mean about the Christ formed by Western Catholicism, the 
form in which He comes to us. But I always feel, don't you, 
that Western Catholicism made many mistakes and mis 
interpretations, and should go back without prejudice to the 
source, in as scholarly and honest a way as can be done. We 
do seem to have made so many muddles, and worse than 



i, 



1 Christopher Dawson, The Spirit of the Oxford Movement (193 3)- 

2 Anne Mozley, Letters and Correspondence ofj. H. Newman during his 
Life in the English Church (2 vok, 1891). 



103 



muddles. They say it was the inspiration of the Holy Spirit: 
but I think they got this wrong extremely often. No more 
room to talk about this ! Only my love. 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
30th July, i9ssf 

My dear Hamilton, 

This isn't going to be a real letter, as I can't write one till 
I have a free moment, and that means when I have got my 
proofs off. At present I am knee-deep in them, sitting on my 
bedroom floor, while the painters and carpenters occupy the 
sitting-room. I have to finish them by August 4, and after that 
shall write to you properly. This is only to send my love and 
to thank you for yours of July I4th and I5th and 2ist, and for 
an old one you wrote to Famagusta; it followed me about the 
east, and arrived here 3 days ago ! Thank you so much for it, 
and for the others. I will answer them all properly soon. At 
the moment my writing-table in my bedroom is piled with 
unopened envelopes and unanswered letters and they will just 
have to wait. I shall be glad when the long business is over; 
and when, too, I can get back to my sitting-room. My furniture 
(the burnt but not quite destroyed things) is being repaired; 
the pictures are being treated, those not too far gone. Curtains 
and covers and carpet are beiiig replaced. I am here till August 
8th, when I go for a fortnight to the Isle of Wight with my 
sister; then back here. The Chapel shuts for August, except 
for the Sunday services, which will be taken by Father May- 
cock, 1 Canon Hood's successor at Pusey House. 1 shall miss 
the daily Masses quite a lot. 

When I have time to read at all, I shall read the various 
1 Rev. F. H. Maycock. 
IO4 



books you mention Tyrrell I always find good. Now I must 
stop and labour. I am quite well, only rather exhausted with 
all this work and comfortless domestic conditions. 

I am just in from the wedding of a friend 1 at St Margaret's, 
Westminster, A beautiful service and singing. But what an 
odd service the marriage service in some ways is ! I can't help 
feeling that the Christ and the Church analogy, kept on all 
these centuries, is pretty blasphemous and silly. Who first 
conceived it? It always shocks ine. But I like all the "for 
richer, for poorer, for better, for worse", etc. it is very 
moving. 

Much love. I shall write again soon. 

Your loving 
R.M. 



Ryde, Isle of Wight 
nth August, 1953 1 

My dear Hamilton, 

At last I have got my book OFF, delivered to the publishers, 
and no more worry with it till it comes back to me in page- 
proofs, and horrid thought index. And at last I can relax, 
he about in the sun on this blessed island (not so blessed as 
Cyprus, but still blessed, when one is, as I am, away from the 
madding crowds on the beaches and sitting in a garden above 
the sea). And now I can write some kind of answer to your 
letters. One result of them was that I took some of the books 
you wrote of with me, and am reading them: Vol. 2 of M. D. 
Petre's (yes, surely Peter, not Petrie I never heard it called that 
but I may be wrong) Tyrrell, which I have read, of course, 
long ago, but have forgotten. 2 It is the volume with the 

1 Nigel Nicolson. 

2 Maude D. Petre, Autobiography and Life of George Tyrrell (2 vols., 
1912), 

105 



account of his middle years, his conflicts with the S[ociety 

of] J[esus], his friendship with von Hugel all that. And I 

like her account of her R.C. mid- Victorian childhood. I also 

have her My Way of Faith but haven't got down to that yet. I 

couldn't get (at the L. L[ibrary]) TyrrelTs Faith for the 

Millions?- but have some Wm Temples. I couldn't get Nova 

et Vetera 2 either, which has some good essays in it. I possess 

several TyrrelTs, and do re-read them from time to time. 

It always makes me wonder how often it is possible for a 

convert bred in a more or less sceptical atmosphere to settle 

down intellectually permanently in Rome: I think nagging 

doubts, rebellions against all those dogmatic certainties, so 

authoritatively delivered as if from God not from fallible 

human beings, would always from time to time raise their 

heads and disturb. What an extraordinary position that Church 

has come to hold, in the minds of vague non-Catholics ! In a 

novel I am now reading a dissolute young woman says, " I 

think I shall join the Church", and means the R.C. Church 

no other crosses her mind. She adds that it seems the only 

escape from self. None of her friends say " How about the 

Anglican Church? " None of them has ever heard of it. But 

they beg her not to 'join the Church", as they think she 

wouldn't be happy in it, or able to believe enough. It seems to 

me that rather ignorant people in novels always take this line 

religion is the R.C. Church (which they call "the Catholic 

Church") and they know of no other. I was interested that the 

nice manager of this hotel, 3 who is an Anglo-Catholic, said to 

me, "Are you an Anglo-Catholic ? " And when I said yes, said, 

" I somehow felt you were." Why, I wonder ? He was telling 

me of "a nice church" near here with daily Mass. But so far 

I have been too sunk in dopey lassitude, after my exhausting 

labours, to get up early enough. I bathe, and lie about, and 

1 The Faith of the Millions: A Selection of Past Essays (2 vols., 1901). 

2 G. Tyrrell, Nova et Vetera: Informal Meditations (1897). 

3 Westeld Park Hotel, Kyde. 

106 



reld, and talk to my sister, and answer piles of unanswered 
letters, and sleep. I must get that Latin and English Psalter you 
mention. And Dawson's Oxford Movement, which would 
interest me. What a good prayer, that "contra adversa munia- 
wur", 1 I shall get it by heart, and transcribe among my 
Preces Privatae. I need it, for I am terribly unfortified against 
adversity, by nature. How wrong you are about me! 
I attach far too much importance to possessions, and loathe 
losing them. In '41, when my flat went, I was shattered (being 
then also without coelestia alimenta) and even now hate to think 
of it. Of course my conflagration the other day was a very 
minor affair ; tho' it wrecked my sitting-room it didn't really 
destroy very much, except some pictures (which I mourn) and 
curtains and covers and a few books and lamp-shades, etc. 

I don't feel quite happy about your Prodigal Son analogy. 
After all, the C. of E. has tried, however faultily, to be Christian 
(and not more faultily than the R.C. Church) and I don't feel 
that it was eating husks all through the Protestant centuries, do 
you? One thinks of George Herbert, of Bp An dr ewes, of 
Hooker, Jeremy Taylor, the non-Jurors, the quiet Anglican 
rectors who did their duty (your ancestors and mine), who 
never felt they served a Church which was no good; and the 
millions of faithful people who belonged to it. But no more ! 

Much love, 
R.M. 



1 See post-communion Collect for Quinquagesima: ". . . Ut qui 
coelestia alimenta percepimus, per haec contra omnia adversa muniamur" 
(". . . That we who have received this heavenly food may by it be safe 
guarded from all adversities.") 

107 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
20th August, 195 3 1 

My dear Hamilton, 

Thank you so much for yours of I4th, answering mine 
from I[sle of] W[ight]. This is in an envelope, as I want to 
enclose an interesting review from the Sunday Times of a book 
on the Clapham Sect 1 (an absurd name, as Raymond Mortimer 
rightly points out). It is, as he says, odd that it should have 
been, in the Church, only the Evangelicals who bothered about 
those social wrongs. I suppose the Tractarians were too much 
taken up with church reform to care about social reform. Or 
is there any other explanation? It is one of the shocking 
anomalies of Christianity like the Inquisition. I do see what 
you mean about the C. of E. and the Prodigal Son. I suppose 
all branches of all churches have shown a terrible appetite for 
husks at various times; luckily sometimes they achieve the 
fatted calf in the end, but not always. The pity is that so many 
people really do prefer the husky diet, apparently, and don't 
see the beauty of the other don't even know about it and 
when, weary of husks, they hanker after a calf, they only know 
about the Roman calf, and make for it without a glance aside 
at the potentialities of the Church of their country. Somehow 
the larger Church has succeeded in imposing itself, and in 
stealing the limelight. Of course there are, all over the country, 
a great number of very dull and unsatisfying churches, which 
no doubt make a bad impression on those who look for a 
Church to attach themselves to. Two Irish girls in the I. of W. 
asked me why C. of E. churches smelt so musty. I said it was 
the smell of damp and ancient stones, also of hassocks. I added 
that of course we had the old churches, and they had had to 
build new ones. They retorted that they thought it was because 
our churches weren't much used. I rather like the smell, it 

1 E. M. House, Saints in Politics: The "Clapham Sect" and the Growth of 
Freedom (1953). 

108 



reminds one of all the country churches that ever were, and is 
very, very Anglican. 

I have now got hold of the first volume of the Faith of 
Millions, and have read some of it with interest. Nova et 
Vetera is vol. 2, isn't it, which I shall get next time I go to the 
L[ondon] Library]. 1 It is interesting to think that in 1897 he 
[Tyrrell] felt as he apparently did, in his admiration for the 
[Roman Catholic] Church (though even then with reservations) 
and by 1900 was writing "O Church of my baptism why did 
I ever leave you ? ". Now I am back here, I can get the other 
books too. I have now got to write a BBC programme on 
"Changing Morals", illustrated by quotations read aloud. I 
suppose I begin with the cave man gnawing his bone and 
snarling at those who try to take it away; a long step from 
him to the elaborate arrangements for people's welfare we 
make now. Yes, we are better. History is horribly cruel, people 
flogged to death, tortured, massacred, lunatics chained up and 
beaten, children worked to death in factories and pits, prisons 
what they were. I suppose even our partial advance in 
humanity is something to be glad of. But we have kept war. 
As to our moral teachers, I suppose "the Light that lighteth 
every man" has inspired in them much the same codes, from 
all ages, however shockingly misinterpreted. Buddha, Con 
fucius, Socrates, the Jewish prophets all speak of love, human 
kindness, forgiving trespasses. But all the time these horrors 
went on; and, of course, go on still, tho' less. And what of 
sex morality ? It seems to undulate, have its ups and downs. 
I see the Kinsey Report about women is out; 2 one review 
suggests that some of the women questioned were probably 
pulling Dr Kinsey's leg. I am little by little getting my flat 
into shape again. . . . Actually the room gets to look rather 
smart . . . and hasn't been so clean for years ! 1 won't write 
on the back of this, as it shows through. I had such a nice 

1 Nova et Vetera is not Vol. 2 of The Faith of the Millions. 

2 A. C. Kinsey, Sexual Behaviour in the Human Female (i953) 

109 



peaceful week on the Island, and feel very much rested by it 
The weather was nice. I hope you too feel well and fit. Much 
love to you. Your letters are so full of interest always. 

Yours, 
R.M. 

20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
i&th September, 1953! 

My dear Hamilton, 

Your letter of I5th reproaches me (though not in words) 
for my dilatoriness in writing lately, for I have had three letters 
from you since I last wrote. But truly I have been impossibly 
busy since I got back from [the] I[sle] of Wfight], wrestling with 
proofs and other business, and have scarcely had time for 

reading or writing anything [I have been hearing] a terrible 

account of the state of tilings [in South Africa] . . . the tension 
between Africans and Europeans, and the frightfulness of the 
Malan government. The ill feeling grows all the time, and no 
wonder. The worst part of it is the way these injustices and 
cruelties are done in the name of religion, that horrible brand 
of Calvinistic Old Testament religion that Boers affect. One 
calls it O.T. because they keep referring to this, but it is 
really a libel on the O.T., with its magnificence and com 
muning with God . . , No, I don't remember that line in 
Swinburne, and, as you say, it isn't like him; I will ask a 
Swinburne expert. Mrs Belloc Lowndes was R.C. like her 
brother. 1 So are her daughters, Elizabeth Iddesleigh and Susan 
Marques, who is married to a delightful Portuguese and lives 
in Lisbon. I will get hold, if I can, of One Poor Scruple, I've 
never read it. 2 Didn't I send you Period Piece ? I know I 
thought of it. I certainly shall, for an early Xmas present ! I 
know you'd love it. It is full of wit and observation and 

1 Hilaire Belloc. 

2 Mrs Wilfrid Ward, One Poor Scruple (1899). 

IIO 



Cambridge and the Darwins, etc. Thank you for all the books 
you put into my mind. I shall get from the Ljondon] Lfibrary] 
The Wards and the Transition}- For the next little while I must 
read books about "Changing Morals", for my BBC pro 
gramme. They certainly have changed: and of course on the 
whole much for the better ... I have been reading Lecky, 2 
Aristotle, M. Aurelius, Plato, Leviticus, the Psalms ; and, as you 
see, have not got yet very near our own times. But before I 
really tackle it I have to compile the index to my book; this 
I must do next week in Dorset, where I go on Tuesday for a 
week to stay with Raymond Mortimer, who is far from well 
and will be alone, so invited me to keep him company; I think 
he will be helpful about the index. 

Your description of your over-replete cell that needs tidying 
is very like my flat! All my drawers and boxes are lull to 
choking, and my tidyings are much too partial and inadequate. 
Should you not throw away a lot of letters, beginning with 
the 134 (now 135) that you mention ? I really think you should. 
They must take a lot of space, and aren't worth preserving. My 
sitting-room has acquired a new neatness after its wrecking by 
fire . . . "homely and yet artistic", as the man who came to 
mend my clock remarked. 

Yes, your reading is rather Popish just now. I am reading 
Christopher Sykes's Two Studies in Virtue, with his study of 
Richard Sibthorp, the Anglican priest early in the 19th century 
who was from time to time drawn over to Rome; it is 
interesting and amusing and attractive. I think if I had been 
born 50 years before I was, I might easily have made that 
journey, just to escape from the bareness of the C. of E. But 
now I feel we have as good as the Romans have, and with it 
far more integrity and intelligence in our worship. What 
should you say is the central point in the Christian faith? I 
suppose the belief that Christ is God and became incarnate and 

l Maisie Ward, The Wilfrid Wards and the Transition (2, vok, 1934-38). 
2 William E. H. Lecky (1838-1903), Irish historian and essayist. 

Ill 



lives to help us now and is the indwelling light in every man. 
I can never get much further than this and that He is Love. 
But all the Churches have got much further, of course, and 
the Rom: Church furthest of all. No more space to expound 
on this ! Don't worry when I don't write. You are so steadily 
there to me that I can talk to you sometimes in my thoughts, 
without writing. 

And I send my love always, even when I don't write. 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
Sth October, 1953! 

My dear Hamilton, 

I seem always to be answering two letters from you, the 
2nd having arrived before I had had time to answer the 1st, 
but it is quite unintentional, as I always think I shall have time 
to write, and then each day submerges me again. Since my 
return from Dorset and getting your letter of Sept. 22nd, I 
have been feverishly rushing round to libraries etc. trying to 
check up on the captions for my illustrations; where the 
original pictures are, who by, etc. etc., my publishers having 
lost some records. It has been a great hunt, interrupted by five 
days of pleurisy on my part, but that is now cured by assiduous 
doping with M. & B. and penicillin, and I am now entirely 
recovered. And the book chores are over, I think, so I can now 
get down to all the other arrears of chores, including " Morals'*, 
and two reviews over-due. What a life ! To-day I got W. G. 
Ward, by his son, from the library (I mean W. G. Ward and 
the Oxford Movement)}- The Transition* is still out, but is being 
sent for, as it is due back. I shall read that with interest; also 
One Poor Scruple. The Ward I have is interesting. His pre- 

1 W. Ward, W. G. Ward and the Oxford Movement (1889). 

2 The Wilfrid Wards and the Transition, see above p. mru 

112 



conversion attitude towards Rome reminds me of you. " He 
recited its liturgy constantly, he studied its devotional literature 
unceasingly. The existing Catholic Church had to him all the 
romance which days of chivalry have to the youthful readers 
of Scott." But you don't hate Anglicanism, and he did. It 
"caused him torture," he told people. He thought it was 
oppressive and had no liberty. This view may seem a trifle 
biassed, but he was too wholly enchanted by Rome to admit 
any such defects in it. Just as Belloc was. And any defects 
which he (Belloc) saw, he loudly denied, and hit out at the 
heretic enemy. Not an admirable character; but an admirable 
writer. He had the great faults of scorn and arrogance. 

I believe myself that our Reformation had positive virtues; 
don't you grant it any ? In spite of the destruction and the 
crudeness and the bareness of church and worship, it had an 
element of truth and moral integrity, and did end many 
corruptions, surely, that had to be ended. Had it been led by 
Erasmus and Colet . . . [sic] but, as you and Horace rightly point 
out, one can't change the past. Or have we, to some extent? 
Anyhow, we have now something in which I, at least, can 
live and find nourishment well in the treacle. 1 1 certainly don't 
want anything else; only the power to use better and more 
profitably what is accessible. In short, I am a happy Anglican, 
even though a pretty unprofitable one. And of course I 
couldn't be a happy Papist, or an honest one. Though I dip 
into their devotions and their liturgy at my pleasure and suck 
no small advantage from it, especially from the bits you pass on 
to me from time to time. But I read it myself too, quite a lot, 
and it is all part of the treacle. From treacle to cantaloups. 
Pronounce (says the Ofxford] Dictionary]) cantaloup. No, 
not cantellopies. It is from the Italian place near Rome, 
Cantalupo, where it first grew, brought there by Armenians. 

1 In earlier letters to Father Johnson, R. M. had written metaphorically 
of "treacle wells'* ; see Letters to a Friend, p. 39, and Lewis Carroll's Alice in 
Wonderland, chapter vn. 



" Highly esteemed by the curious" (1763), and thought a great 
delicacy. Talking of delicacies, did you know that old St 
James's Day, August 5th, used to be Oyster Day, because the 
oyster season then began. 1 Hence the grottoes made by children 
of oyster shells. Did they in Norfolk "go grottoing", begging 
"a penny for the grotto " ? And is it still anywhere done? A 
friend of mine says he remembers it in Battersea Park some 
thirty years ago. And the Shropshire children always did it 
when my father was a child there. I wonder if the custom ever 
got to America. It is supposed to be derived from the days of 
pilgrimages (with scallop shells) to St James of Compostella, 
when they built grottoes to his honour. The origin of all 
these customs interests me to track out. I dare say the New 
Englanders thought it popish, like the maypole, and didn't 
allow it. 

I am now recovered from my conflagration, and sit sur 
rounded by its fruits: new curtains, with a pleasant design as 
of large blue sunflowers in squares very nice, I think; and a 
new deep blue weave sofa cover, and new haircord carpet, and 
polished up writing-table and cabinet (inlaid), and a new 
cabinet with drawers, for the new wireless to stand on; and 
on the new wireless stands my new and beautiful Parthenon of 
cork, under a glass dome like a bubble, which Raymond 
Mortimer gave me in Dorset; and newly painted walls of deep 
cream, and the pictures now nearly all back, except the totally 
destroyed; some remain rather scorched, but I have hung what 
I could. The room looks very clean and re-furbished, and is 
an incentive to tidiness, for me an unattainable virtue except 
by fits and starts. I really must try to keep my litter under; I 
am glad that you too find this difficult. 

You have given me no news for a long time of your friends 
the Paines. Is Mrs P. well, and the girl and her baby? Do 

1 By "old St James's Day, August 5th" R. M. presumably means St 
James's Day according to the Julian Calendar, which was in use in England 
until 1752. 

114 



you see them much? And how is Father oh dear, can I 
have forgotten his name? 1 I forget everything just now, 
and he so kind to me when over here. It will come back to me 
when I am less sleepy; it is after 1 1, and I have had a busy day. 
And my ostium coeli 2 awaits me at 8.15 to-morrow. Mark 
Bonham Carter, a friend of mine and the son of Lady Violet 
B.C., a most intelligent young man in his early 305, wants to 
come to the Grosvenor with me one morning; 3 he ... thinks 
he will try what it is like at the Chapel. I hope he'll like it. ... 
[I] saw the new T. S. Eliot play . . . The Confidential Clerk; not 
v.g., I thought. I always feel he could do better, somehow. 
But some people see deep meanings in it. Well, who knows? 
Good-night. Thank you for everything in your two letters, 
and much love. 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.I 
2$th October, 1953 f 

My dear Hamilton, 

Thank you v. much indeed for your letter of Oct. I2th. 
I am interested in what you say about the validity of Catholic 
sacraments and orders outside the Rom: Church. I always feel 
it is largely from vanity that the Papal claims to be the unique 
Catholic Church of Christ rise; they can't bear to have any 
non-Papal rivals. Apropos of this, I will send you Infallible 
Fallacies* the pamphlet by some anonymous Anglican priest 

which has lately been published It is called "An Anglican 

reply to R.C. arguments", and opens with a protest against the 

1 R. M. means Fr Pedersen, S.S.J.E. 

2 "Doorway to heaven." 

3 The idea originated with R. M. 

4 Infallible Fallacies: An Anglican Reply to Roman Catholic Arguments, by 
some Priests of the Anglican Communion (S.P.C.K., 1953)- 



R.C. anti-Anglican propaganda, which is to be found in all 
those booklets which lie about R.C. churches, and elsewhere. 
I think a reply was wanted, but perhaps they go too far in 
criticism down too near the ill-mannered R.C. level, which is a 
pity. But I gather they meant to answer the questions of many 
Anglicans who are upset and shaken by Roman propaganda. 
I shall like to know what you think of it, when you receive it. 
How nice it would be if each Church were to publish a 
pamphlet full of compliments to the other ! Why should there 
be all this ill-feeling? 

Mark Bonham Carter came to Mass with me, and liked it 
v. much. ... I hope he will go on coming sometimes. That 
Bonham Carter you knew may have been Sir Maurice, Mark's 
father and Lady Violet's husband a pleasant, able barrister of 
about yo-odd. Are you a reader of George Santayana, and did 
you ever come across him? I've just been reviewing his last 
autobiographical volume 1 (he died last year 2 , I think). A 
curiously egotistical philosopher-poet, who never fitted in 
anywhere; Spanish birth, American and Harvard upbringing, 
long stays in England (Oxford and Cambridge). But, tho* a 
sceptic, PIC] could like no religion but the R.C. Church, which 
he never practised, but felt a patriotic devotion to, and loathed 
Protestantism (oh dear, my new pen is not a success, it conies 
through the paper I shall type instead). Fr Waggett 3 asked 
him to lunch at Cowley, and (except Fr W. himself) he 
utterly despised the Fathers, and described them most rudely. 
That was about 1896, I think: before your time, of course. 
But dear Fr Gary must have been there, 4 and many other 
delightful people. I think Santayana was angry with them for 
being non-"Catholic" monks at all; he found it hypocritical 

1 My Host the World (1953). 

2 26th September, 1952. 

3 Rev. P. N. Waggett, S.S.J.E. (1862-1939), ^tom R. M. knew at 
Cambridge before World War I. 

4 Rev. H. L. M. (Lucius) Gary, S.S.J.E. (d. 1950), formerly R. M/s 
confessor. 

116 



and absurd. He didn't like King's either, 1 except the architec 
ture of the Chapel etc., which he describes very beautifully, but 
implies that it was unvisited by God. As Bertrand Russell says 
of him, he was full of "facile contempt", therefore difficult to 
love. I am going to a lecture on the Gospels by E. V. Rieu, 
who has lately translated them, hasn't he ? 2 And I want to read 
C. H. Dodd on the Fourth Gospel, which was reviewed the 
other day; it sounds interesting. 3 You will see that I am trying 
to improve my Njew] T[estament] knowledge, which wants 
doing. Meanwhile my sister is engaged in trying to introduce 
an unbeliever to Christianity; she plies her with books, which 
the unbeliever reads with interest, but so far can't envisage a 
God. Jeanie has never unbelieved; I have, so am useful in 
suggesting means of cure. Perhaps, in the end, it must be a 
movement not of intellect but of will. Perhaps sin, perhaps 
unhappiness, help sometimes to open the doors; perhaps some 
times mere loneliness, often of course personal influence. But 
reading ? I don't know if that often opens the ostium coeli. 
Corresponding with a Cowley Father in Cambridge, Mass, is 
not a bad plan, followed by attending a Chapel in Mayfair. 
I have got the Transition Wards from the Library now, and read 
a good deal of it with interest. 4 It must have been a stimulating 
time and set of people. Quite different from the circle of 
Arnolds, Stephens, Huxleys, etc. that my grandparents moved 
among, and who seldom (except Tom Arnold) had R.C. 
leanings. Tho' several of my mother's cousins were converts 
actually. Yes, Sam: Daniel 5 yearned after old times, yet 
remained Protestant; like Bishop Corbet 6 and many others. 
All Hallows next Sunday: that at least the Church has always 
celebrated. And All Souls has returned to us; I wish we put 

1 King's College, Cambridge. 

2 See above p. 88. 

3 C. H. Dodd, The Interpretation of the Fourth Gospel (1953)- 

4 See above p. inn. 

5 Samuel Daniel (1562-1619). 

6 Richard Corbet (1582-1635), Bp. of Oxford and Norwich, 

117 



fairy lamps on graves here, as we did in Italy. Much love for 
All Hallows. 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
$rd November, 1953 f 

My dear Hamilton, 

Your letter (Oct. 26th) came soon after I had posted mine 
of 25th; and now you have answered that one on 28th, so I 
have two of yours before me. I wonder when you'll get 
Infallible Fallacies. You will probably dislike it v. much; 
indeed, we mostly think it a mistake. It may hinder some 
wavering would-be converts and set them thinking more 
critically about Roman claims and Anglican ditto, and may 
tell the ignorant tilings they hadn't known before about both : 
but this doesn't compensate for the aggressive tone of much of 
it, which can only do harm. Perhaps I shouldn't have sent it 
you, because I know you'll hate much of it. 

Did I ever tell you of my little god-daughter, Mary Anne, 
now 12 ? x I sponsored her at a time when (I now see) I was in 
no fit state to be sponsoring anyone but there it is, I am her 
godmother, and I did promise to see that she was brought up 
a Christian. She now goes to St Paul's school, and her sister 
of 10 to a smaller day school in Kensington. There they get 
some church and scripture teaching, I suppose .... Now 
I feel it is time I took up my responsibilities more, and tried 
to introduce them to some attractive church that has good 
children's services masses or afternoon services, or both ... As 
smaller children they sometimes went in and out of a Roman 
church close to them, off Kensington High Street, and probably 
that is about all they know of Catholicism. They know 
nothing, certainly, of Anglican Cath: and I should like to 
1 Mary Anne O'Donovan. 
118 



introduce them to this, in an attractive setting. . . . St John's, 
Addison Rd 1 [has, they say] . . . services for children of a 
Catholic type. So I shall go there to inspect it, and then take 
the two young ladies there on Sunday, and try and tell them 

something aboiit the Church I wish you would bear 

these children in mind from time to time, and my efforts for 
them. They are intelligent, charming, lively, and we are 
mutually fond of each other; I am, of course, their "Aunty 
Rose". Mary Anne reads some of my books. I fear she 
won't get far with Ruins, which comes out at the end of this 
month. 

All Saints and All Souls were v.g. ... A really first-class 
sermon on Sunday, mostly about All Soub, and yesterday we 
had 2 early Requiem Masses. 

Unusually, I have been writing a letter to a paper (The 
Listener) in reply to a broadcaster on Newman and Manning 
who charged the C. of E. with having "slept a deep sleep" for 
nearly two centuries when Newman came to Oxford in i8iy. 2 
What a thing to say of the Church of the Caroline divines, the 
tremendous religious conflicts between Churchmen and 
Puritans, the rich stream of Cathol[ic] piety and tradition that 
ran thro' both iyth and i8th centuries, tho' rather thinly in the 
latter. But remember the Non-Jurors, Wm Law, the groups 
of pious churchmen and women, in the Little Gidding tradi 
tion, the theological pamphlet wars that excited London so 
much, the innumerable books of devotion that ran into so many 
editions and were so widely used, the sacramental teaching in 
them, so much in advance of the B[ook of] C[ommon] P[rayer]. 
Then the speaker referred to the bibulous, toadying parsons of 
the early ipth century. Searching the records of my clerical 
forbears of that time Conybeares, Macaulays, Roses, Fer- 

1 A slip for St Barnabas', Addison Road. 

2 R. Furneaux Jordan, "Rome and Oxford: A Study in Environment," 
The Listener, 29th October, 1953. R. M/s letter was published in the issue 
of 5th November. 

119 



gusons I find sobriety, scholarship, integrity of life, piety. 
And in so many others as well. These stale second-hand 
cliches are so silly. Oh dear, I have scarcely begun on the many 
topics raised by your letters. Musophilus, 1 Carthusians, 2 etc., 
and several admirable prayers that you quote. I will write about 
these next time. Your in some ways unwise hemisphere is 
sending us an evangelist called Billy Graham to convert and 
rouse us. I fear he may have some success, those hysterical 
missions always do, specially in "the Protestant underworld". 
I have lately met several people brought up dissenters, now 
nothing at all (can one blame them?) who, I foresee, will end 
in Rome. Our chapels are breeding grounds for that church, 
and it should be grateful to them. They know how horrible is 
the religion they grew up in how unlovely, dull, unshining, 
stark, often vulgarly expressed and they know of no other, 
but assume that Rome is the alternative, and fly to it with relief. 
Now I go to the Ljondon] Library] and shall get out that 
Mathew book, which I did read once, and that edition of 
Musophilus, which I have read, but elsewhere; and [I] should 
like to read it more carefully. 3 Thank you for those v.g. 
prayers, and all the interesting comments in your letters. I have 
finished the Wards (Wilfrid 4 was hard on Tyrrell, so is 
Maisie [Ward]: I prefer M. D. Petre's picture of him 5 ). 

Love always. 
R. M. 



i 



Samuel Daniel, Musophilus, or a General Defence of Learning (1599). 

2 This refers to David and Gervase Mathew's The Reformation and the 

Contemplative Life (1934)- 

3 R. M. nowhere makes it clear which edition of Musophilus Father 

Johnson had recommended. 

4 Wilfrid Ward, son and biographer of W. G. Ward. 
6 In her Life of Tyrrell, see above p. 105. 

120 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
i6th November, 1953 f 

My dear Hamilton, 

Yours of Nov. 9th (posted then) came quickly, and was 
most welcome. Thank you for reminding me of Musophilus, 
which I got, in that edition, from the Library, and read with 
great interest. How sane it is ! Every merit except poetry and 
clarity, don't you think, for poetical or clear it isn't. But 
eloquent and moving, and oh what good sense ! Exactly what 
we feel now: " For with the worst we will not spare the best, 
Because it growes with that which doth displease", I like 
"th'opened and invulgar'd mysteries*'. But I don't quite get 
"the Norman subtleties". 1 The whole poem is very interesting. 
As to the Mathews' Carthusian book, I haven't yet got hold of 
that. 2 I am meeting the brothers at lunch next week, and will 
mention it. The Bishop will soon be leaving Mombasa for 
good, 3 and will probably take work in England. 

Did I never mention before my 12-years-old god-child, 
Mary Anne? By the way, the Conybeare infant, to whose 
Eton baptism I went, was not a god-child, only a cousin. 4 At 
that time I shouldn't have had the cheek to take on a god-child, 
things being as they were. Twelve years ago I was much less 
aware of such matters, and had therefore more cheek. It really 
was quite wrong, in my then circumstances. Still, I did it, and 
now her faith is my concern. I took her and her n-y ear-old 
sister Jane on Sunday afternoon to a very nice children's service 
at St Mary Abbots, taken by an admirable curate 5 , who really 
seemed to be interested in the children and eliciting answers 

1 R. M. has added a marginal note here: " See overleaf for more about 
it"; i.e. see below p. 122. 

2 The Reformation and the Contemplative Life. 

8 Mombasa had been Abp Mathew's headquarters while Apostolic 
Delegate in Africa. 

4 John Bruce Conybeare, see Letters to a Friend, p. 32. 

5 Rev. Charles Wright. 

121 



from them; he talked about Christ at twelve in the temple, and 
about St Hugh of Lincoln, and interested my two very much. 
After the service they went up to get stamps to stick in books 
each week, and are keen to go again. Then I took them out to 
tea, and gave them little copies of the catechism, telling them 
they might learn the answers to the first two or three, and I 
would ask them next time. Perhaps I made a mistake in telling 
them that the proper answer to " What did your godfathers 
and godmothers then for you? " was " Silver mug, spoon and 
fork"; this joke stuck, and I fear I shall get this answer only. 
I remember we used to think it funny ! Afterwards I rang up 
the curate, and told him their names, and asked him to take an 
interest in them, as ... it would be good if they took root at 
St Mary's. So I hope for the best. I would like them to strike 
roots in some Anglican church. Mary Anne told me at tea 
that they "didn't believe anything yet", but that later on she 
thought of becoming a Roman Catholic. I said, " You'll have 
to believe plenty if you do that, you know", to which she 
replied, " No, I shan't believe it. But I like the churches, and 
they have prayers in Latin " which you would have liked. 
The point is that they, when smaller, used to run in and out of 
the R.C. church close to them in Duke's Lane [off] Church 
Street, Kensington, and the priest was nice to them and fed 
them chocolates. I told Mary Anne that they were now think 
ing of having the prayers in English; she has begun Latin at 
school, and likes it. If ever she really does "vert", I fear she 
may just take it as a nice thing to belong to, and believe none 
of it really. Still, she may grow to. Meanwhile, I must do 
what I can about giving them an idea of the thing; no, I won't 
impart any doubts or negations, only what I do believe and 
value. . . . 

Really S[amuel] D[aniel] does write awkwardly sometimes. 
[For instance in Musophilus,] line 698: "Norman subtleties". 1 

1 See Complete Works in Verse and Prose of Samuel Daniel (ed. Alexander 
B. Grosart, 1885), where "the Norman subtleties" occurs in line 668. 

122 



The O[xford] Dictionary] sheds no light on these. I think it 
means "arguments", but why Norman? The next two lines 
seem to personify them. 1 Then (1. 704) what is "if"?? 2 I can 
only suppose that it refers back to "the estimate" in 1. 695 ; 
but how awkward this is. So is 1. 722, in its relation to 
72i. 3 One sees what this means, but it has no syntax. All page 
90 is good and clear. Mostly I think his sentences are too long, 
which leads him into grammatical confusion, forgetting what 
was his predicate and subject. One feels that what he had to 
say exceeded his powers of saying it, like a river brimming 
over its banks and rushing unbridled and unchannelled. But 
what good things he was trying to say, and how one sym 
pathises ! I must look up in the Worthies all that Fuller says 
about him. S.D.'s was a different view of the Reformation 
from Fuller's; but obviously F. had great esteem for him. I 
suppose S.D/s view is very much ours; certainly mine and 
yours. 

Now I have to sally out to a party given by Graham Greene 
and Wyndham's Theatre on the 250th performance of The 
Living Room. I seldom meet actors, they are to me bright 
strange fishes swimming in an element alien to me; I feel that 
to meet them is to See Life. Not that I want to see much of 
them. But I shall like to meet this cast, particularly the girl 
Rose Tutin, 4 and the man who acts the old priest who can do 
nothing to help her in her sad plight. It is a moving, odd play; 
I wonder how it will fare in New York, if it should go there. 
A party beginning at 10.30 is rather late for me, and will bring 
me rather too near the hour of getting up for Mass. I used to 

1 Who (being mounted up into their state) 

Doe best with wrangling rudeness sympathise. 

2 Yet would this giddy innovation faine 

Downe with it lower, to abase it quite: 

3 To alter course may bring men more astray, 

And leaving what was knowne to light on none. 

4 R. M. means Dorothy Tutin, who took the part of "Rose" in The 
Living Room* 

123 



go to more late parties once; but there were then more of 
them, I was younger, and got up later ! 

My book comes out on Dec. 4th 1 ; I hope to see some copies 
in a day or two. Shall I send it you? I think you must have 
it, tho' you needn't read much of it. Much love. Thank you 

for 2 good little pfost] c[ard] prayers. 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.I 
2nd December, 1953 1 

My dear Hamilton, 

I think the posts have already begun to go hay-wire for 
the festal season, don't you. Your last letter, posted Nov. 24th, 
took 6 days instead of the usual 3 or 4, and no doubt they will 
get worse soon. But thank you so much for it; I shall probably 
have to write this letter in instalments, as you sometimes do, 
my time at the moment being rather cut up. 

I am interested in all you say of Musophilus. As regards his 
[Samuel Daniel's] poetic gifts I rather agree with Ben Jonson, 
who said he was "an honest man, but no poet" and with 
Michael Drayton, who thought that his manner better fitted 
prose. Ben Jonson, of course, disliked his anti-Latinism, and 
was probably prejudiced. But as to Xudor English, surely he 
had many splendid models, both in poetry and prose. Writing 
Musophilus in 1599, he had all the Elizabethans behind him in 
their stately glory and what a glory they were! The great 
and smaller poets, the great musical translators, such as North, 2 
Philemon Holland, 3 Florio, 4 the travel writers collected by 
Hakluyt, Sidney, Tyndale and Coverdale, Cranmer, Hooker, 

1 Pleasure of Ruins was published on yth December, 1953. 

2 Sir Thomas North (1535 ?-i6oi ?), translator of Plutarch, etc. 

3 Philemon Holland (i 552-1637), translator of Livy, Pliny's Nat. Hist., etc. 

4 John Florio (1553 ?-i625), lexicographer and translator of Montaigne's 
Essays. 

124 



2 



the racy Larimer, 1 Nashe 2 and the romance-writers, Bacon 
what models to choose among ! The awkwardness of the I5th 
century English outgrown, and all the renaissance of imagina 
tion and language and freedom of expression surging up like a 
great river set free after long running soberly between narrow 
banks. This at least the Reformation did help to bring about, 
with all it cost in other ways. And, after all, it was an age of 
great scholarship and learning. Of course I agree with you 
about the "beastly business," but it had other sides, that made 
for nobility and genius. If only the Puritans could have been 
kept out of it, what a thing it might have been. I suppose it is 
true to say that all movements have good and evil sides: 
Protestantism, Catholicism, agnosticism, monasticism, roman 
ticism, democracy, etc., etc. I think Daniel exaggerated the 
sickness of learning in his time; there was plenty of learning, 
and of a very fine kind, though scholastic theology had waned, 
or sickened from its own excess. I think you must be right that 
" Norman " as S[amuel] Dfaniel] uses it must mean medieval. 
You have elucidated the meaning of several of the lines for me. 
I haven't still got the book at hand, but remember it pretty 
clearly. As to Simony, and such venal goings-on, from the pre- 
Reformation accusations there must have been as much of these 
in the medieval centuries as in the i6th, so here too the poet 
was prejudiced, probably. I suppose people are apt to be; about 
their own times. But he had an interesting and attractive mind 
and angle. What interesting things you bring to my notice 
always. . . . 

My Ruins emerge on Monday, and the publishers are giving 
a party for them and for a book of Cyril Connolly 3 to-morrow. 
There is a BBC review of Ruins on Sunday afternoon, by John 
Raymond, the literary editor of the New Statesman, which I 
shall listen to with interest. And I gather Raymond Mortimer 

1 Hugh Latimer (c. 1485-1555), Bp of Worcester. 

2 Thomas Nashe (1567-1601), romance-writer and dramatist. 

3 Ideas and Places (1953). 

125 



has done it for the Sunday Times. So it will get a good start. 
Of course a book like that doesn't expect large sales. It will 
cost 25/-, which, as it is large, illustrated, and nicely produced, 
isn't expensive at current prices. Then I won't send it you; 1 
but at Xmas I shall send you Period Piece, I hadn't forgotten that. 
I think you'll like that. I hope your cold is gone now. I saw 
the death of your cousin T. F. Powys, I suppose the most 
famous of die family. Did you know him well, or not so well 
as John ? 2 Mr Westons Good Wine was interesting and able, 
tho* not wholly likeable. 3 His too was, I suppose, a godless 
world. 

Did I tell you that I met Bp Mathew and brother Gervase 
at lunch, and they were much indignant at Infallible Fallacies. 
We agreed it was very ill-judged and discourteous. They 
admitted that the anti-Anglican leaflets published by the 
Cath : Truth Society were also discourteous, but . . . these 
acrimonious criticisms . . . are a frightful mistake, and must 
surely envenom relations. 

Dec. $rd. This morning came your good letter posted Nov. 30 
quite good going. It has come in rime for me to comment 
on it in this. Yes, isn't that a vivid Vesuvius story of Pliny's. 4 
No trace identifiable, I think, of Uncle P.'s house. All the old 
town of Misenum is perished, but there are a few ruins of villas 
on the Cape, and some moles of the harbour. I don't know 
what was the site of that villa. Of nephew P.'s Laurentum villa 
near Antium there is no trace either, but the approximate site 
is known. Uncle P. must have been a very great man, so full 
always of noble and courageous curiosity. Thank you for your 
encouraging words about my little misses and the Church. I 

1 Father Johnson had evidently replied in the negative to R, M.'s 
question, "Shall I send it you ? " see above p. 124. 

2 Theodore F. Powys, younger brother of John Cowper Powys, was 
Father Johnson's first cousin. 

3 T. F. Powys, Mr Westons Good Wine (1928). 

4 Pliny the Younger, in a letter (vi. 16) to Tacitus described the death of 
his uncle, Pliny the Elder, during the eruption of Mt Vesuvius in A.D. 79. 

126 



do hope they will get on. No. I shan't minify the mystery. 
Odd; my complaint of R.C. teaching is that it tries to do this, 
by its detailed, clear-cut, rigidly dogmatic instruction, that 
leaves no place for the mysterious and unknown. I remember 
this at the Convent school we attended for a time in Italy. 1 
The nuns and priests knew just how everything happened, and 
all about heaven, purgatory and hell, and what happens in the 
Sacraments. I feel we leave much more on the margins of 
certainty. 

p.s. I meant to tell you about the gorgeous Greek Orthodox 
(Pan-slav) 2 [service] that I went to last Sunday. A radiant 
golden affair, and such singing ! 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.I 
$th December, 1953 

My dear Hamilton, 

As I want you to have my Christmas card, I am putting it 
into an ordinary letter, surface mail (too heavy for the air) and 
posting it now, to reach you, I hope, in time for Xmas Day. 
The card I took from the same engraving (1760) I have for the 
jacket of my book: happy Turks enjoying themselves in Greek 
ruins. I have composed a Christmas verse for it. 3 My other 

1 R. M. and her sisters Margaret and Jean attended a convent school 
when the Macaulay family was living at Varazze (1887-94). 

2 R. M. probably means Pravoslavni, which is the word for "Orthodox" 
in various Slavonic languages. 

3 It's said that Turks, when we keep Christmas Day, 
Smoke pipes in Asia Minor by the sea, 
Lolling among Greek capitals, so gay 
You'd never guess the Ottomans they be. 
They know not why they smile, but on their ear 
Beats from the west a carillon of bells, 
Rocking and tumbling; in a dream they hear 
And suck their hookahs, the grave infidels 

127 



enclosures are two reviews ; one by me, about a new anthology 
of children's poems 1 do you agree with my views on children's 
poetic tastes ? But I forgot, you said you never cared for poetry. 
I can't imagine my early life without it I was steeped in it. 
The other review I thought might interest you; it is about the 
attitude of the English Recusants. 2 The passage I have marked 
reminds one again what our Reformation might have been had 
it been left to More and Erasmus and their kind. Even you 
might then, perhaps, have approved it. 

What you say sometimes about our Church saddens me a 
little; it sounds almost as if you disliked and despised what to 
, me is a beautiful treasury of riches and mystery, and a source of 
spiritual life and strength. In your last letter, e.g., you speak of 
"all mystery" being "eliminated" by the child being called "a 
member of Christ, the child of God, and inheritor of the 
kingdom of heaven". You say this makes it sound "quite 
ordinary and dull", whereas to me it sounds mysterious, 
beautiful and exciting; far more so than the dogmatic and 
clear-cut teachings of Rome, against which so many intel 
ligences have revolted. I suppose one difference between me 
and you is that I have lately (and largely thanks to you) re- 
found the Church, and to me it is still a wonderful and lovely 
heritage, arul its Masses a glorious mystery, interpenetrating 
our life with God. There is too much in Rfoman] Cathfolicisjm 
to repel me so that I could never quite get that from it. I feel 
the Anglican Church more Christian and more what I want 
in religion. I know you don't, and sometimes I feel a little 
sad for fear you are sad about being in the wrong Church. No, 



"Mahound," they grunt, and puff and bubble away, 
Not knowing that they smoke for Christmas Day. 
I wish you all as merry a feast as they. 
1 The Faber Book of Children's Verse, compiled by Janet Adam Smith 



2 Probably a review of Geoffrey Anstruther's Vaux of Harrow den: a 
Recusant Family (1953). 

128 



I should never try to "explain the Tightness of our Church" to 
Mary Anne; only try and make her see it as a channel for 
God's beauty to enter our lives, and make her, above all, want 
this beauty. She is a child who will be able to reason, and I 
know, if she got instead into the R.C. Church, would eventually 
want to get out, seeing much of it as "mumbo-jumbo" and 
untrue; she is that kind of child, clear-headed, and not very 
romantic. The lo-year-old Jane is a more likely R.C., I think. 
Anyhow, I must do my best with them. Meanwhile, we have 
quite entertaining Sunday afternoons together. Perhaps one 
day I'll take them to a R.C. service; but they couldn't follow 
it much yet. I don't mind what they are, so long as they have 
some form of Christianity to hold on to. 

But please, dear Hamilton, to whom I owe so much, don't 
run down my Church too much to me, because I love it, and 
don't like it called "dull and ordinary". For that matter, lots of 
R.Cs find their services this, too, when used to them. Perhaps 
one day I shall find the C. of E. dull, but I don't so far. Of 
course I do see the best of it, in my Chapel. Perhaps if I had 
to attend a Sunday-matins church, I should be bored and 
repelled. 

I sent you Period Piece to-day. I shall be writing later, by 
air paper, for Christmas; this one is only for the enclosures. 
"O Oriens " (that you quote) is one of my favourite prayers 
and I often use it. 1 Much love. Forgive my C. of E. bias ! 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
12th December, 1953! 

My dear Hamilton, 

I sent you on Dec. 5th my Christmas card with a sea letter, 
hoping it would reach you by Christmas Day, but it may not. 

See above p. 76. 
129 



Anyhow, it won't for some time, so I am filling the epistolary 
gap with this very handsome Coronation air paper, so that you 
may not think I haven't answered your last letters, which were 
so full of interest. I expect transatlantic posts are akeady hay 
wire. I sent you also Period Piece. Not Pleasure oj Ruins, which 
saw the light on the yth, and has had, so far, a very nice kind 
press; charming reviews in The Times, Sunday Times, Observer, 
[Daily] Telegraph, New Statesman that, so far, is all. I am 
surprised and relieved, having got myself rather tired of the 
book, to find that people do, apparently, like it. No American 
publisher has yet taken it: perhaps they won't. Though, con 
sidering what tourists they are, a book about the great ruins 
of the world might have a sale. It has a lot of nice illustrations, 
and looks handsome. 

I have had such a good Christmas present ... a History oj 
Christian-Latin Poetry up to the close of the Middle Ages; a 
very exciting work, which you would like. 1 . . . 

I hope you are well, not tired, not overdoing, and not too 
submerged by Christmas jobs. Do you ever attend Mass in 
any neighbouring R.C. church? Perhaps the Society's rules 
don't encourage this; I don't know. I have sometimes done 
it, but I like ours better, it has less gush, more restraint. On the 
8th we kept the Conception of the B.V.M. Our (the Cowley) 
Missal doesn't call it ''immaculate", of course, but I believe they 
probably do at the very extreme churches. . . . To-morrow 1 
take my two little misses parvulae indoctae 2 to their weekly 
service, which they rather enjoy. Mary Anne is v.g. at answer 
ing questions. Yes, I know you will say I ought to be taking 
them to St James's, Spanish Place. But there they would hear 
all kinds of things about the B.V.M. and the Saints, and all 
that can come later if they want it. The first thing I feel is 
Christianity and God, if only they can get a hold on this. This 

1 F. J. E. Raby, A History of Christian-Latin Poetry from the Beginnings to 
the Close of the Middle A%es (2nd ed., 1953). 
2 "Unlearned little girls." 

130 



letter brings so much love for Christmas, but I may write again 
before that. 

Your loving K. M. 

20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
Christmas Eve, 195 3 f 

My dear Hamilton, 

A word written amid the rush and bustle of Christmas, to 
thank you so very much for your letter posted 2ist, which came 
this morning, marvellous at this season ! My sea letter didn't 
do so badly either, it seems. That sea letter: I feel remorse that 
it made you remorseful; but thank you for your wonderful 
letter, which completely reassures me, and shows me that I was 
stupid to be even a little disturbed or saddened by the things 
you have from time to time let drop about these two branches 
of the Church, both of which you love. You know, I do owe 
you more than I can say for introducing me to so many lovely 
things prayers, graduals, etc. etc. in the Roman liturgy and 
breviary. These prayers have much enriched my Preces 
Privatae; and I am always rather pleased when I find that I have 
discovered and appropriated for myself the same prayers that 
you have later pointed out to me, as well as getting hold of the 
new ones. All this you put me in the way of. All this, and, of 
course, the being inside Ecclesia Anglicana, which is the best 
thing I have. So forgive me if I seemed to grumble and to be 
apprehensive of your criticisms of it; of course I make many 
myself, even now that I so much love it. Who can criticize it 
rightly, except those who are in it and love it ? Of course I 
sometimes feel that I love too exclusively one side of it, and 
should feel pretty forlorn and chilled and unsatisfied if I ever 
had to make do for long with the middle kind of church, the 
kind that abounds all about the country and suits, apparently, 
so many devout people, and which one does feel affection for 
so long as one doesn't have to attend its services. But I suppose 



even that one would make a modus vivendi of if one had to. 
And, after all, one could still enrich one's public worship with 
the little Mass prayers. So, you see, I am prepared for anything ! 
And why should I be entitled to a better kind of thing than 
my pious forbears had and were nourished by in their good and 
spiritual living ? Still, I am thankful that I have it. 

I am in the middle of the Christmas rush; I am going to 
my sister's to-morrow morning, after midnight Mass here. . . . 

Myparvulae are coming on pretty well, I think. On Sunday 
my godchild is to be one of those who join in reading the lesson 
for the day; part of St Luke, I think. I was so pleased when 
the nice curate asked her at the service if she would, and she 
said yes. She is now apprehensive but eager, so is her 10-y ear- 
old sister. I hope it will go well ! She is a child with brains and 
a strong personality, for good or ill, bless her. They are both 
good companions, and we always have fun together. But they 
are too much concerned with the lusts of the flesh, in the shape 
of chocolates, which I tell her I have promised that she shall 
renounce. Illogically, I usually produce some for them. 

Now I must get ready to go out and lunch with Archbishop 
Mathew, now back from Mombasa for good, and still uncertain 
what he will next do, besides literary-historical work, such as 
going on with the life of Acton. Did I mention to you in my 
last letter the life of Gasquet by Shane Leslie that I have been 
reading, 1 which revealed such shockingly dishonest and un- 
scholarly juggling with his texts on the part of the good 
Cardinal when he was given Acton's letters to edit ? "Lacordaire 
sees through the hollowness of the Roman system", wrote 
Acton; which Gasquet renders " Lacordaire is rather unsettled 
just now". The sanctity of quotation marks is a sanctity con 
tinually violated by him in the interests of the impression he 
wants to give; an unforgiveable sin in a historian, and one 
about which the scholarly Dr Coulton always attacked him, 
but he never replied or altered anything. It seems so much 
1 Shane Leslie, Cardinal Gasquet: A Memoir (1953). 
132 



honester just to leave out what you don't want to publish than 
to alter it. "O Sapientia" is a great antiphon which he should 
have taken to heart: but perhaps he thought he was following 
the higher wisdom in perverting truth for the greater glory of 
the Church. 

I may go to mid[night] Mass at All Saints', [Margaret Street,] 
not the Chapel to-night; I believe the music and singing are 
extremely good there. 

Sometime I'll send you a few reviews of Ruins. All have 
been kind; except the Daily Express, who said it "may be 
worthy scholarship, but it makes jolly dull reading!" They 
rang up my publishers to ask for the book, as they hadn't 
thought it worth while to send the Express a copy, so it seemed 
ungrateful ! But every other reviewer has seemed to enjoy the 
book, which relieves my mind, and I hear it is selling quite 
reasonably well. This brings all my love for 1954, and so 
much gratitude for everything. Forgive me if I say stupid 
things sometimes, and ora pro me always. 

Your loving R. Al 
I hope you are wdll 



133 



1954 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
New Year's Day, 1954 f 

My dear Hamilton, 

Thank you so much for your letter of Christmas Day, which 
came to-day (posted 28th). You hadn't, of course, yet got my 
a[ir] p[aper] of the other day, answering yours of the ipth, but 
will have got it by now. I'm glad Period Piece also has reached 
you. Let me know sometime what you think of it. It seems to 
have had good reviews in America. . . . 

I'm glad you found that article about the Recusants 
interesting. I did too, and thought you would. Yes, I expect 
it is for ever sunk and lost among that Father's Christmas 
correspondence. What a time we have made of Christmas ! 
And what a litter its tide leaves deposited when it recedes. I 
must clear up mine soon; my room is at present a shocking 
mess. I had a nice peaceful day and night at Romford, after 
midnight Mass here. We lit the candles and set out our 
Provencal Crib and heard a carol service from King's College 
Chapel in the evening very peaceful. I got back on Boxing 
Day evening, in time to dine in Hampstead; and on Sunday 
I heard my godchild reading (very well) part of a lesson in St 
Mary Abbots; I was quite proud of her, so was her little sister. 
The curate who presides at the Children's Service was pleased 
with her, I think. 

It is difficult to know exactly how to get things across to 
children. Looking back, I remember that we got religion 
through the prayer-book teaching of my mother; she used to 
give us most stimulating lessons on the collects on Sundays, 
and it was really exciting and inspiring. We did also go to 
parts of the services in one or other of the churches near us 
[in Varazze], but I don't remember getting there anything like 
that stimulus or feeling of the excitement and fineness of the 
Christian battle. There was too much of the B.V.M., too much 

137 



of what seemed to me to be rather "soppy" devotions; you 
know what R.C. devotions can be. I think it came to us 
through my mother rather like a Marathon or a Thermopylae, 
and we thought of striving for the incorruptible crown, though 
I fear our strivings were fitful. But we did glimpse the glory 
and the courage and the beauty of it all, and it was never made 
tedious for us, or drab. I think my mother was a very wonder 
ful person, with an extraordinary magnetising gift, and she 
kindled a kind of fire when she spoke of religion and being 
good. I have never since met anyone with so much gift for it. 
The Churches speak in more muffled tones; their approach is 
"here it is, if you can take it", and one has to learn to find 
God in it. At Mass one can; and I find our Anglican Mass 
wholly satisfactory; much more so than the Roman, which 
contains a great deal that I just don't want and which doesn't 
answer to any ideas I could have about it all. This in spite of 
the many first-class prayers set about in it, many so beautiful, 
which I use often. But, after one of these admirable prayers, 
follows some piece of what to me is gush and sentimentality, 
though this is probably my fault, but it is a thing I have felt 
from childhood about R.C. prayers (I mean, some of them) ; 
they embarrassed me then, and do still. From such a tone our 
B[ook of] Cjpmmon] P[rayer] is blessedly free. The mystery 
is there just the same, and I don't feel it is explained away or 
"eliminated". It is difficult about mystery. Too little, and it 
is commonplace: too much, and one gives it up as improbable 
and out of reach; one has to try for a balance. I'm sure one 
doesn't want all that about "not three incomprehensibles" etc. 
etc. ; I suppose one wants the shadow and the wavering mirror 
and the poetry, and the being able to make what one needs 
out of it somehow, out of all the imagery and the dark and 
the light, and not to be too much bound with words and 
statements, all man-made, all falling short. The Romans say 
too much, try to net it all into words and doctrines, instead of 
letting it interpret itself into each life and soul as the com- 

138 



munion is made. I could do without all that, without all those 
Angels, O[ld] T[estament] analogies, prophecies, irrelevant holy 
people. I seem to be talking rather nonsense perhaps. ... I 
went to St PauTs on New Year's Eve to enter on 1954, with a 
friend; but it was rather dead. . . . We sat and pined for Dr 
Donne, who thundered about "this minute makes your 
eternity, because it may be your last minute; God is speaking 
to each soul here, and may bless or curse you according to your 
acceptance or refusal of Him" ; and the people began to swoon, 
and lay inert as if their Eternity had already arrived. . . . More 
spirit and fire would be good, but one seldom gets it. Have 
you heard of a book (new) about the C. of E. from 1800-1900, 
by a C. K. Francis Brown ? x It sounds not brilliant but sound. 
Oh I do see just what you meant and felt and mean and feel 
about the two branches of the Church, and I partly feel the 
same. Certainly four centuries ago I should have. No room 
to expand on this. So much love for 1954. Don't get overdone 
with answering letters and shriving penitents. I only do the 
former, but find it a tough job! 

Yours with my love, 

R.M. 

(The 4th new year since I took up with the Church again, 
thanking you.) 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
i$th January, I954f 

My dear Hamilton, 

Your letter posted Jan. nth came yesterday, thank you so 

much. The one posted 2nd I have too; I opened it wrong 

way up, cut the wrong end, and the result is most peculiar, and 

I read it with difficulty, but I have read it all. If you try this 

way of cutting an a[ir] p[aper] open, you'll see what I mean ! 

1 A History of the English Clergy, 1800-1900 (1953). 

139 



I am much interested in what you say about Period Piece. Those 
Darwins were, of course, quite un-religious. But Frances, 
Gwen [Raveratj's first cousin, 1 succumbed to religion in the 
end; as Gwen writes "it got Frances in the end", and she is now 
High Anglican. Don't you like the pictures of those two little 
cousins together ? And of the family out tricycling. And of 
Gwen under the nursery table, praying that her dancing 
mistress might die ! She is a clever and charming artist. I didn't 
know her, as when we went to live in Cambridge she was 
already in London with her uncle. But my Conybeare cousins 
did. I have met Gwen and Frances since, of course. 

Yes, we did owe a lot in religion to our mother. Though, 
you know, I discarded it at 14 or 15, and during my later teens 
was what the iyth century called ' 'nullifidian". I regret it now. 
If I had been church-minded at Oxford, I should have gone to 
Cowley, I dare say. I got it again later, as you know. Of 
course we were never, as you were, brought up in a Church 
and Vicarage atmosphere; but we did have those collect 
lessons, and I remember them still, and the excitement and 
inspiration they caused. I imagine Gwen Darwin's mother was 
quite worldly; the Darwins were very unworldly and good, 
but without religion. For the R.C. services of our childhood, 
I had affection, but not exactly attraction. We were bored by 
the convent school nuns, and not inspired by the very repetitive 
prayers in church. Perhaps we knew it too well, for it never 
held any glamour. Not the glamour and beauty that Anglican 
Catholicism had for me later. . . . Of course in the 1890'$ there 
was a lot of Anglo-Cathfolicism], but not, I suppose, very much 
in the country parishes. 

Such a silly outcry by Protestant Truth etc. against the 

televising of the Roman Mass by the BBC last Sunday. 

" The Mass is against the Law", they wrote. What can 

their minds be like? They seem 400 years out of date. The 

R.C.s were pleased by this protest, and by the assumption that 

1 Frances Cornford (1886-1960). 

140 



Mass in the Anglican church had never been heard of. The 
BBC has sometimes broadcast an Anglican Mass but not 
televised it. The R.C.S said, " Now the public has seen the 
Mass in which the Coronation used once to be enshrined". They 
implied that our Coronation last year had omitted Mass 
altogether; well, from their point of view, of course, it had. 

I'm sorry I forgot to answer what you said about Joyce 
Gary. I like him very much as a person, and his novels are 
very able, though I have never found them absorbing. The last 
one I haven't read. 1 ... I think next Sunday I shall, at n, go 
to St Stephen's, Gloucester Place. 2 . . . That is where T. S. 
Eliot is a sidesman; I wonder if he takes the bag round! 

You know, Virginia Woolf wasrit really "an unhappy 
person", though she had that side. But she had so much fun, 
and humour, and a kind of genial friendliness, though also 
much malicious comment (discreetly not published). 3 Did you 
ever read To the Lighthouse ? It is a very amusing and brilliant 
picture of her father, Leslie Stephen, and her mother. Yes, you 
are right about Novels. And I must begin another soon. You 
are a great encouragement to me to do so ! Ruins is still having 
a kind press; quite beyond my expectations. A nice stranger 
writes to me that he likes its "sustained note of ecstasy" ! Lots 
more to say, but no room to say it, only my love always. 

R.M. 



1 Joyce Gary, Except the Lord (1953). 

2 R. M. means St Stephen's, Gloucester Road. 

3 See A Writer's Diary: Being Extracts from the Diary of Virginia Woolf, 
edited by Leonard Woolf (1953). 

141 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
3ist January, I954J 

My dear Hamilton, 

I write from among snows; not deep in London, but quite 
deep in some parts of the country, and to-day, Sunday, flaking 
steadily down, so that the slopes of Hampstead, where I drove 
after church, are slippery and white. However, it doesn't last 
long in this temperate land; you, no doubt, are deep under for 
many weeks to come. I hope you don't go out in it, and are 
well Thank you for yours posted 20th: yes, the Punch review 
was very nice. ... I think all my reviews have been kind, 
except the Express . . . and the Manchester Guardian, whose 
reviewer, a Mrs Sprigge, abused it on the grounds that I 
obviously didn't like ruins, and why, therefore, had I written 
of them? ... I should have thought my ruins-passion only 
too evident on every page. She thought I was "ribald", 
which seems most odd. However, every one else has taken 
the book as I meant it, and has praised it much more than I 
dared to hope. No American publisher has yet taken it, but 
my publishers have hopes. 

That is interesting, von Hugel's view of Darwin as an 
unconscious deepener of Christianity. I'm not sure I agree with 
him, do you ? To me, Christianity, or even belief in God, have 
nothing to do with the natural sciences, or the order of the 
universe; they are, to me, in a separate world, and I should 
never draw any conclusions about them from Nature. But I 
know many Christians do. Odd, how differently people's 
minds work, in this matter of religion. 

I think that, however Virginia W[oolf ] and E. M. F[orster] 
had been brought up, they wouldn't have retained Christianity 
when adult, or ever really believed in it. All E. M. F.'s principles, 
and I suspect most of his actions, are what I should call deeply 
Christian in the moral sense; but intellectually he would never 
accept it. Virginia was naturally less loving and humanly 

142 



unselfish and kind than he is; but her intellect equally remote 
from religion. As were the Darwins, and so many other 
intellectuals. One is lucky to be able to come to it, not only 
from upbringing, which taught one the lie of the ground, so 
to speak, but from later developments and sense of need in 
my case always there. Always one felt in one's soul what 
someone has called "the God-shaped hole", where God has 
once been, or will be, or (anyhow) ought to be. Even non- 
believers have that hole; but they fill it with different sub 
stitutes. I have done the same myself, for long years. 

Joyce Gary, being Irish, was certainly brought up Church of 
Ireland I don't know what he is now. I doubt his knowing 
much about Dissent. But he should have remembered about 
the Psalm versions Dissenters would know. 1 At least, I suppose 
they would. Or do you think their prayer books (after all, they 
have prayer books) would take the Psalms from the B[ook of] 
Cfommon] Pfrayer] ? I suppose they might. 

I'd forgotten that More 2 came into John Ingksant I must 
read it again sometime. I was slightly repelled by hearing that 
he [J. H. Shorthouse] had taken so much of it (without 
acknowledgment) from John Evelyn. But it is a good book. 
Yesterday we celebrated the Feast of Blessed Charles the 
Martyr at Mass, and gave thanks for his life; but I don't 
know that I do. He was a shifty and tiresome monarch, and 
his tiresomeness opened the doors to that abominable civil war 
and puritan revolution, whereas a wiser king would have 
averted both and we should have ridden the puritan storm 
and not, perhaps, have been affected by it ever since. . . . 

Much love always. 
R.M. 



1 See Except the Lord, chapter 28, where a Dissenter quotes from the 
Psalms. 

2 Henry More (1614-87), Cambridge Platonist. 

143 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
i$th February, i954t 

My dear Hamilton, 

As usual, your letter of Feb. 4 crossed mine of Jan. 
my letters always seem to reach you just in time to be acknow 
ledged at the end. I expect this will do the same. However, 
never mind. I must get hold of Fr Gardiner's Norms for the 
Novel. 1 It is an interesting theme, and one I have no definite 
principles about, I think; I form an ad hoc judgment of each 
novel as I read it. Have you come across The Go-Between, by 
L. P. Hartley? I think it very good; I wonder if you would. 
It has had a great success here, so no doubt is published in 
America too. If not, I will send it you. Do you see the Church 
Times, by the way? It had an excellent review of Ruins; one 
of the best I have had. I don't know who wrote it. If you 
don't see the C.T., I'll send you this review sometime, if you 
like seeing reviews of books you haven't read. H. F. M. 
Prescott has now written another book, about Pilgrimages to 
Jerusalem in old days; 2 it sounds interesting, and she is scholar 
enough to get it right and not fanciful. 

I have been busy correcting Ruins for its 2nd edition. Kind 
friends have sent me a lot of Errata, and some I found for 
myself. My publishers now want to send me, at their expense, 
somewhere, to write about it. But Collins (Mark Bonham 
Carter, that is to say, who is a great friend of mine) says I have 
promised to write a novel for Collins next, and that Weidenfeld 
& Nicolson (who want me to write for them) are tempting me 
like Satan, showing me all the kingdoms of the world in order 
to seduce me. . . . 

[The sermons at Grosvenor Chapel] on the Sundays till 
Easter [are to be] on "the Christian mythology" which will 
interest me. Perhaps it will make me change my heretical mind 

1 H. C. Gardiner, Norms for the Novel (New York, 1953). 

2 H. F. M. Fresco tt, Jerusalem Journey (1954). 



144 



about the order of the universe, who knows ? But I have long 
since renounced any hope of understanding the universe. I have 
never read or heard any account of it which gives any clue. 
As to God's relation to it, I feel that He may regard it as 
irrelevant to His purposes for humanity's salvation. Perhaps I 
talk nonsense. 

Feb. 20. I have Dr Joad's last little book, 1 just out (some months 
after his death) to review for the Times Lit. Sup. It is a kind 
of Peacockian set of imaginary discussions between a group of 
people, the central character being obviously himself, called 
" Mr Longpast". It has a preface by Canon Hood and John 
Betjeman, about his religious development, during his last 
illness (including how I used to drive up G. Irvine ... to bring 
him Communion). I'm not sure that all that is not a little too 
intimate, but perhaps he wouldn't have minded. The con 
versations themselves give a last run to all his prejudices and 
ideas; which may be, I think, a pity, in a way. He could be, 
and often was, unfair to the point of unkindness, in his com 
ments on contemporary writers, musicians and artists, and [he] 
loathed Americans, and despised women (but got over this 
before the end, when he became kinder). 

Your brother seems unjust about your air papers. They are 
always legible and clear, in spite of being closely packed. I never 
misread a word. (Alas, I fear you couldn't say the same about 
mine.) Did you answer me when I asked if you would like 
me to send the Listener article about J. C. Powys ? I don't 
remember. Perhaps you hadn't space to in the small piece of 
what you so nicely call "surface" that remained in your letter 
after mine had arrived. But I will, if I can find it. ... 

My love always. 
R.M. 



1 C. E. M. Joad, Folly Farm (1954)- 
145 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
ist March, I954f (St David) 

My dear Hamilton, 

Thank you so much for your letters of Feb. 18 and 23, the 
second one answering mine of 20th. I suppose I can't have 
asked you about the Listener talk on J. C. Powys before. But 
I will look for it when I get a moment, and send it you by 
surface mail, which is slow but sure. It is a cutting, that will 
go in an envelope. It is considerate of you to think of the 
trouble of doing up parcels. All the same, I expect I shall one 
day send you Ruins (perhaps for a birthday present ?). Then you 
could turn the pages and look at the pictures, and read a bit 
here and a bit there, when in the mood. It's not a book to 
read through, I think, but in small doses. 

It seems difficult to be certain what that collect really 
means; 1 1 suppose it might be one of several meanings: profit 
by, progress or advance in (or by), thrive upon. The trouble 
with so many Latin words is that they have so many possible 
meanings. This was a bother in one's youthful Latin-learning 
days, I remember. CasselTs Dictionary I always thought very 
needlessly difficult in its arrangements. . . . 

I'm glad you reminded me of John Marquand. I've read 
very little of him, but shall now read Point of No Return, and 
B. F.*s Daughter. 1 think he is good. Of course you would know 
the people he writes about better than I can, but I like to meet 
a rather unfamiliar world. Did you read Lionel Trilling's 
novel I forget its name about the Communist who left the 
Party ? 2 Very interesting ; and sheds a sinister light on American 
politics and Communist vengeance. 

Yes, it is interesting exploring alien worlds. I always feel I 
ought to understand more kinds of society than I do; it is 

1 Collect for Friday of 4th week in Lent; see below p. 149. 

2 Lionel Trilling, The Middle of the Journey (194.7). 

146 



stupid not to. G. K. Chesterton said somewhere that he was 
fascinated by clergymen, finding them strange and unfamiliar 
as cats ! I know too many to feel quite that. 

On Shrove Tuesday I am bidden to a cocktail party given 
by the Editor of The Month, Fr Caraman, and Longmans. 
It may be a rather interesting set of guests, I dare say. I 
don't often see The Month, but it always interests me when 
I do. 

You ask about "the Christian Mythology" . . . [the 
Grosvenor Chapel] sermon topic at present. . . . [It] means the 
Biblical story, as containing the truths it enshrines. . . . very 
interesting . . . The world myths, Virgin and child, the risen 
God; all culminating in the Christian story. I put it badly, 
I know. 

I am reviewing too many books; they take my time. I 
must really refuse them, and get down to my own work the 
novel, anyhow. My publishers offer to send me somewhere, 
that I may write about it (Weidenfeld & Nicolson, I mean). 
I thought of Russia, and wrote to their Consulate about visas. 
But they hold out no present hope, what odd people they are ! 
In my letter I said I wanted to look at the landscapes and rivers 
and architecture, which sounds very innocent and unspy-like. 
But I don't suppose they believe me, though it's true, I want 
to roam about steppes, see the Caucasus, the Volga, the Black 
Sea, white horses cantering with Cossacks on back and long 
tails floating. I could not care less about their political regime 
or the way they live. But no, I see I shan't get to those steppes 
and those great rivers. I came in two days ago to my flat and 
interrupted two men, " What are you doing here ? " I asked. 
" Who let you in ? " Upon which they knocked me down and 
rushed away downstairs and I couldn't catch them. And every 
drawer was emptied on to my floors higgledy piggledy. 
Luckily I had interrupted them in time to stop them taking 
much. They had put out my father's silver cups and other 
silver, and some more things, ready to take, but only did take 

147 



a little clock and other small objects. I was furious. I wasn't 
hurt, to speak of. They had no cosh, luckily. My love for 
Lent. 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
March, 1954! 



My dear Hamilton, 

Thank you so much for yours of 5th. I didn't mean to 
alarm you with my burglars; they got away with little, owing 
to the short time they had, and scarcely hurt me at all, I only 
bruised my arm a little when I fell, so it wasn't really"grievous" . 
I was very lucky to lose so little and not to have been coshed 
or tied up and gagged ! These men are very ruthless and wicked 
just now. Are they especially bad also with you? But they 
won't come back to me for a long time by any laws of chance. 
(I have changed my lock, but they can pick "Yales".) I am 
afraid the police will never get them, as there is no clue. But 
they may very well get them for some other 'job" ; I hope so. 

Russia has receded a little. The more I hear of the prospect, 
the more I feel it might be something of a bore. I mean, I 
should be with a party, and they might be bores. 1 And, as the 
Soviet government would have paid our return fares to Prague, 
one would feel bound in civility to look at the tiresome things 
they might want to show us, such as schools, hospitals, 
maternity homes, etc. Whereas all I want to see is landscape 
and old buildings. I feel sure guides would take one round, 
telling us how splendid it all is, and that, though funny for a 
time, would get tiresome. Stephen Spender told me that even 
a literary visit to Russia might make it difficult if ever I wanted 
to visit America again so I went to the U.S. Consulate and 

1 R. M, had been considering going to Russia in a party in honour of 
Tchekhov. 

148 



asked. The Consul said it might make a visa slow and difficult 
to get. I asked him " How long is this nonsense of yours going 
to last ? " He smiled sardonically, and said merely, " It's getting 
worse". Consuls don't like such goings-on, it hampers their 
job. Meanwhile George Weidenfeld (one of my publishing- 
firms) is bribing me with a publisher-paid trip to the East: 
the old trade route Venetian merchants used to take. I suggested 
going through Greece and the Islands to Turkey and die Black 
Sea. Steven Runciman says they have built lidos on the shore 
out of the old Byzantine walls and that the Turks don't bathe 
much, so the Black Sea is nicely under-populated with 
swimmers. Then, if I could somehow coax a permit out of 
the Soviet government, I could cross the B.S. in a steamer to 
the Russian side. Anyhow, there would be Turkey, which is 
full of Roman ruins, and it would be very exciting and lovely. 
This would be in late July and August, if it comes off 

Yes, I think it is the Church that is going to avail us for the 
eternal ordinances, and not profit by them itself. 1 It obviously 
could mean either, and we could take it, I suppose, now in one 
sense now in another. But the former seems the more practical 
prayer for us to make. Possibly it is deliberately ambiguous, 
so that it can mean both ! I confess that in this Ember week just 
over I have been using it in both senses; [in] the ablative that 
the ordinands and the Church may profit by the eternal 
institutions, which they so sorely need. 

I must read some Tyrrell this Lent; I think I have 
Christianity at the Cross-roads* somewhere. . . . [Those] sermons 
are being really admirable; this morning partly on the pre- 
Incarnation Light of Christ in man's soul, the eternal 
Sapientia. . . . 

We have your Billy Graham here, converting thousands 

1 See Collect for Friday of 4th week in Lent: ". . . praesta quaesumus, 
ut Ecclesia tua . . . aeternis proficiat institutis" (". . . grant, we beseech thee, 
that thy Church may avail us for the eternal ordinances"). 

2 George Tyrrell, Christianity at the Cross-Roads (1909). 

149 



by his meetings! I will send you the Spectator with a fair- 
minded article on him by John Betjeman ! I wonder what are 
really his permanent effects. John quotes Canon Hood as 
predicting good from them. But how repugnantl 

My love and thanks always. 
R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
24th March, 1954! 

My dear Hamilton, 

Your letter of i8th pleased me much, with its glimpse of 
you in the Confessional, telling young ladies not to say 
"grievous", and that it wasn't a sin, but a thing they should 
know. Why didn't you tell her also not to "propose" to 
amend ? But perhaps she is not one of those who say that. I 
rather like it, and may adopt it myself. ... I have got an 
invitation to go to Canon Hood's installation at St Mary 
Aldermanbury, Bow Lane, 1 on April 9th. He is very pleased 
to have a City church; it was one of the City churches 
very little bomb-damaged, I think, and is anyhow now 
restored. 

What you call my "oriental projects" are still very much 
in the air. I am not going in a party to Russia in honour of 
Tchekhov, that is certain. I may go to the Turkish side of the 
Black Sea, but this isn't at all certain. But wherever I go will 
be safer than London, and "moving rapidly over the face of the 
earth" is safe and wholesome, and I think should be done while 
it is possible, while one has good health, and can get someone 
else (such as publishers) to pay one's expenses. It would be so 
interesting to see the Black Sea, and Turkey, and the Crimea 
from a ship, even if I couldn't land there. I find the surface of 
the earth, its cities and landscapes, very exciting and beautiful. 
M. means St Mary Aldermary. 
150 



But I quite likely shan't explore it this year, I thinJk. I shall send 
you Folly Farm and my review of it, when I find it. And John 
Betjeman on Billy Graham, too. How I agree with you about 
E.G. ! Fundamentalism is such a barbarity. I doubt if he is 
having any permanent effect here. My sister has got her 
catechumen on some way now, but she can't believe in the 
" Divinity of Christ", so won't be baptized. It seems you have 
to say the creed when baptized. I am reading an interest 
ing book on Lamennais. 1 No more space! But lots more 
love. 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
6th April, 1954! 

My dear Hamilton, 

Thank you so much for your letter of March 30th. . . . 
Ruins isn't yet published in America, by the way, so couldn't 
be noticed in reviews. If and when it is published there, it will 
be interesting to see how it goes, and whether the Press and 
public like it. My novels have always gone well there, except 
They Were Defeated, which was not their cup of tea (except for 
a few scholarly people, who included Herbert Agar), but I left 
a long gap between The World my Wilderness and the novel 
before that, and probably passed out of memory rather. My 
next novel may restore me a little, but not Ruins, I fear. Did 
you like what you saw of it? Six dollars is a lot; over 2, 
isn't it. Here its price is only 25/-. One of my publishers, 
George Weidenfeld, is over there just now, and is seeing about 
getting a publisher to take it if he can. But all your bookseller 
can have meant by not expecting it to be noticed was that it's 
not yet published, so couldn't be. Of course it may never be 

1 Probably A. R. Vidler's Study of Lamennais; The Church and the 
Revolution (1954). 



published there. Thank you for telling the bookseller it had 
done well here. I believe George Weidenfeld took the reviews 
over, to encourage the publishers. 

I have been reading a book on the "Cambridge Platonists", 1 
translated from German by an American. The style is dreadful, 
therefore ; but the matter is interesting. I love those Cambridge 
1 7th century men, with their Alexandrian and Platonic 
philosophy, and their stress on the light that hghteth every man 
and the Deiform seed in the soul. I have been reviewing this 
little book on them. 

So here we are in the middle of Passion Week not my 
favourite season. I don't mean because of its events and their 
meaning for us, but because of the way the Church (Roman, 
Anglican, and Nonconformist) has always taken it. It's 
probably my fault that I am alienated by so much of the 
language used in the prayers about it, both Latin and English. 
I believe, when left to myself, I can get into it much more 
easily. But the Church seems always to have clung to its 
ancient sacrificial Hebrew notions, which haunt its interpreta 
tion of Good Friday. You will think this impertinence on my 
part, perhaps; but I don't think it really is, only an admission 
of inaptitude for a standpoint and teaching alien to me. Those 
great early Latin hymns about it are magnificent, but no use to 
me as religion, only as poetry. 2 If the ocean did not roll between 
us, we could discuss all this. Still, we make a pretty good shot 
at it on air papers. Yes: Exeunt omnia in mysterium* indeed. As 
to "the obsequies", I see the O[xford] Dictionary] gives "rites" 
as one meaning, and quotes from 1550 "the ceremonial 
obsequies in the house of God". "Obsequy" (in the singular) 
meant obedience or homage, but in the collect it is plural, so 

1 E. Cassircr, The Platonic Renaissance in England (trans. J. P. Pettegrove, 

1953). 

2 Hymns such as Vexilla Regis prodeunt and Pange, Lingua, gloriosi proelium 
certaminis of Venantius Fortunatus (c. 540*:. 600). 

8 "All things end in mystery/' 

152 



must mean "rites". Anyhow, as you say, the handles by which 
we lay hold on heaven. . . . 
Much love for Easter. 

R.M. 



Mottisfont Abbey, 

near Romsey, Hants 

May Day, 1954! 

My dear Hamilton, 

It is too long since I wrote; I have been grossly busy. I 
have had your letter of April n lying by me, waiting to be 
answered, but have had no moment till now, on this week-end, 
when we have breakfast in bed and a little leisure after it; a 
nice plan. It is an interesting old house, built out of a dissolved 
abbey, with fragments of abbey and church in corners about 
it not much, as at Rothley Temple, 1 but hints, as it were 
an arch here, a piscina there, a re-modelled door, great 
monastic walls under the Georgian stucco. And spacious lawns, 
where we play croquet. Nice fellow-guests: Raymond 
Mortimer, Clive Bell, Peter Quennell, and others; and 
animated conversation all day. Quite fun, really. 

Thank you much for your good letter . . . [and] for those 
prayers you quote; I have noted them for use. 

I did an unwonted thing lately. John Betjeman gave me 
a Press ticket to go and hear Billy Graham, the U.S. Evangelist, 
at Harringay; so I went there with Joe Ackerley, a friend of 
mine who is the literary editor of The Listener, and we sat under 
him, in a packed stadium full of thousands of people, while he 
addressed us on the yth Commandment, to which he gave the 
exclusive name of "immorality" (the breaking of it, that is). 
He was very fervent, preaching with great gesture and power, 

1 The Leicestershire seat of Thomas Babington, R M/s great-great 
grandfather (1758-1838), which had formerly been an abbey. 

153 



very crude and simple, even illiterate (in phrasing and thought, 
not in accent). Of course it was not what Joe Ackerley or I 
could stomach. But the packed thousands did, and hundreds 
afterwards walked up to be "saved" a very impressive crowd. 
Vulgar, yes: God saying to us, " You thought no one saw you 
on that day. But I saw you, I took a picture of you"; suggest 
ing those photographers who stand about at the seaside 
snapping people. The audience seemed to us half dopey, 
somehow. Ever and anon we sang a vulgar hymn, with great 
enthusiasm. All very strange. God certainly does move in a 
mysterious way, His wonders to perform. I think he really 5 
converting many people to a Christian life; he is a Baptist. 
One day I must ask some Baptist about this "being saved". 
What happens when they sin again, and go on sinning ? Can 
one be saved again ? Well, quot homines, tot sententiae, 1 and good 
luck to them all. Joe Ackerley came out murmuring " Dread 
ful creature ! " I tried not to feel this, because I think he is 
sincere, though melodramatic. 

Easter over, and here we are in May. And about Whitsun 
I probably go to Turkey for about 4 weeks. Black Sea, 
Constantinople, Ionian coast; all very interesting and beautiful. 
I shan't drive this time. 

How good and how welcome your letters are. It is good 
of you to write just what I need and want. 

I hope you had not too strenuous a Holy Week and 
Easter. . . . 

My love always, 

M. 



1 "As many opinions as there are men." 
154 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.I 
i6th May, I954f (or Deus qui fidelium) 1 

Oh dear, Hamilton, I seem to have mislaid your two lovely 
letters; I was carrying them about in my hand to answer them, 
and must have put them down somewhere in the flat, but 
where ? Anyhow, for the moment, non sunt. They will turn 
up; but meanwhile I am answering them without the book. 
However I remember lots of nice things out of them, in 
particular "D^us qui Errantibus" 2 which pleases me very much. 
That letter isn't in my selection of Paston letters; I must look 
at it in the full edition at the Lfondon] Library* I don't think 
particularly well of our Pjrayer] Bjook] way of adding 
"almighty" to "God" in so many collects; it is unnecessary, 
and not v.g., it seems to me. We do it on this Sunday too. I 
see that "to those that go astray" is another rendering of 
"errantibus", which I rather prefer to "those that be in error", 
I think. Qui errantibus rather comes home to me just now, 
owing to this and that; so does "veritatis tuae lumen ostendis". 
How fortunate one is to be able in viam redire? , . * 

On being reminded by you of poor Ovid, I got out Tristia 
and Ex Ponto and read his sad accounts again. 4 "Orbis in extremi 
jaceo desertus harenis . . . aequora semper ventomm rabie solibus orba 
tument"* It doesn't promise good bathing! All the same, 

1 "O God, who (makest) the faithful (to be of one mind and will . . .)"; 
see Collect for 3rd Sunday after Easter. 

2 "O Almighty God, who (showest) to them that be in error (the light 
of thy truth)"; see Collect for 3rd Sunday after Easter. 

3 "(To the intent that they may) return into the way (of righteousness)" ; 
see Collect for 3rd Sunday after Easter. 

4 Tristia and Epistulae ex Ponto were written when Ovid (Publius Ovidius 
Naso, 43 B.C. c. A.D. 17) was in exile from Rome at Tomis, on the 
Black Sea. 

5 " I lie abandoned upon the sands at the confines of the world. ... the 
seas deprived of sunshine for ever swell beneath the wrath of the winds/' 
Ovid, Ex Ponto, 1.349- 

155 



''obligor, ut tangam laevifera litora Ponti", 1 and no doubt poor 
Naso made the worst of it. Anyhow, he was at Tomis [sic], at 
the bleak Thracian end of the Black Sea. I am sure that on the 
southern shore, where I shall roam (as well as to other places) 
it won't be like that, with icicles perpetually hanging on the 
hair and the beards of the fierce locals; no, it will be bland 
and sunlit, aprica litora? and the Euxine Sea will be smooth and 
blue. I shall also be on the Ionian coast and the southern coast 
(I mean of the Mediterranean, not the Pontus) and in the 
interior; Ankara and the other inland places. And especially 
Istanbul Constantinople or Byzantium as I prefer to call it 
where there is so much to see. I always think S[anta] Sophia 
must be one of the very most beautiful things anywhere, inside 
and out. And the Byzantine palaces, and the Theodosian wall 
crumbling to ruin. I will send you picture p[ost] c[ard]s, which 
Naso never did to his friends. I suppose Poste Restante, 
Istanbul, Turkey, would find me, on and off; I can't be sure 
of any other fixed point. I shall be back at the end of June. 
The posts may be odd between Turkey and Cambridge, Mass., 
so don't worry, if you don't hear; you will eventually. I fly 
on June 4th, just before Whitsunday. I always seem to spend 
Whitsunday, that ghostly feast, in some heathen land. Not that 
Moslems are heathens, of course. Talking to a young Jewish 
friend to-day, I said without thinking, " Let me see, do you 
have the 10 Commandments, or are they only in our Pjrayer] 
B[ook] " ? He replied, "After all, WE made them, didn't we ?" 
and I had to hand it to him that they had. And the Moslems 
made the Koran, which I believe is a very good code of morals 
on the whole. " Very superstitious people," a Christian Arab 
said to me in Syria, " they pray in their mosques all day." Your 
letters have turned up good. I now have again before me 
your explanation of the kind of salvation that such as Billy 

1 ** Here am I making vows, and all that I may reach the savage shores 
of the ill-omened Euxine." Ovid, Tristia 1.2.83. 

2 "Sunlit shores." 

156 



Graham sets going in people, and of the metaphors that help in 
this. I do see that it may be very valuable and saving. But 
tends too much to depend on emotion; and, as you say, that 
passes. Thank you for saying that about Salutis jundamentum? 
I like that. I sometimes wish you nearer at hand, so that I could 
discuss things with you. It would be good for me. 

I have noted Lacey's "A. C. Faith" 2 and shall get it from 
the L[ondon] Library]. Also the Historic Christ* That chapter 
on Worship sounds interesting. I have to review a history of 
the Church in England 597-1688, by Dr S. C. Carpenter, late 
Dean of Exeter. 4 

Much love always, 
R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
2^th May, 1954! 

My dear Hamilton, 

This letter is aimed at June 2nd, that auspicious feast, but I 
dare say it will reach you too early. (I thought better too early 
than too late.) Anyhow, it brings much love to you for your 
birthday, and for the coming year. I see you are patroned by 
the Martyrs of Lyons and Vienne, Pothinus the Bishop and 
Blandina the Virgin, and their companions in holy martyrdom. 
I have ordered to be sent to you a book you won't read, but 
I feel you ought to have it from me, and you may like the 
illustrations, and bits here and there. Anyhow, it brings my 
love and good wishes, and gratitude for all you've done for 
me since August 1950. I don't think this book (Ruins) is likely 
to be published in your adopted continent. 

1 "The essentials of salvation." 

2 T. A. Lacey, The Anglo-Catholic Faith (1926). 

3 Probably James MacKinnon's The Historic Jesus (193 *) see below p. 220. 
4 S. C. Carpenter, The Church in England, 597-1688(1954). 

157 



I should have begun by thanking you for your letter "begun 
May 19", of which I absorbed every word. I might take a 
Marquand novel to Turkey, perhaps. Yes, in common with 
most novelists to-day, his world has few supra-mundane com 
munications. Compare George Eliot: she was a rationalist, yet 
her Maggie Tulliver is guided through her life by the com 
munications of conscience and God; G. E.'s world was open 
to that always. On the other hand, I have just been reading 
two new novels, both by friends; the people get into dire 
straits, and never a cry for help to God, never a prayer, never 
even a dim faith. Their desperate human problems have to be 
resolved in human terms. I am just now in touch . . . with a 
desperate human problem: this business of husband throwing 
over wife . . . and taking a mistress. . . . No religious faith in 
either ... or in the mistress ... It is all so squalidly unrelated to 
any principles; or rather, the principles are unrelated to good 
ness as I see it. And it is on my conscience that we my 
generation, who had codes, often deserted the codes and 
disrupted them, damaging them for the next generation so 
that now they scarcely seem to exist, in many people. I 
have a very personal remorse about this, though I was only 
one of many. But what is to come of it all ? ... 

No, don't try and write to Turkey. I'll send you news of 
my travellings when I can. But no air letters from there, alas. 

I admire your enterprise in making the Colonial rebels pray 
for the descendant of Geo: III. Do you add the President 
of the revolted colonies ? In this country, royalty-worship has 
become a lunatic hysteria, guyed, I am glad to see, in Punch 
("Our Palace Page") and elsewhere. Now I must get on with 
my review of S. C. Carpenter's book. This is, I suppose, my 
last word to you from England for the present. Fera litora 
Pontfl- call me. 

My love always. I shall think of you on 2nd June at Mass, 

1 "The savage shores of the Euxine." 

158 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.I 
8th July, I954t 

My dear Hamilton, 

I arrived home at 4 a.m. the day before yesterday, plunging 
from extreme heat to icy cold and wet. Turkey was hot; 
particularly in the south (Antioch, etc.) but [also] all over. I 
found waiting for me, among a great pile, your letter of 27th 
June. I am very sorry for its sad news of the loss of the two 
Fathers. It will cast a sad melancholy over your Retreat, I am 
afraid. Sudden accidents like that are so much more of a shock 
than death from illness. 1 

Turkey was most interesting and exciting. Too hot: I was 
slightly ill from it while I was there ; [with the] exhaustion of 
getting a lot done under that fierce sun, scrambling about, 
frustrated by not knowing Turkish; though kind English 
friends sometimes turned up opportunely. But it was interest 
ing. I went from Constantinople down the Black Sea to 
Trebizond, the last little Byzantine empire, not conquered by 
the Turks till 1461, eight years after Constantinople fell. It was 
a very famous place in the Middle Ages: "the emperor of 
Trebizond" has many references in poetry. Now it is com 
pletely Turkish, the last Greeks turned out 30 years ago, 
and all the Greek churches now mosques. But there is a 
Byzantine ruined palace and castle on a high crag above the 
town, and I climbed up there and felt forlorn Byzantine ghosts 
pattering about it. Apart from that, it is a very Turkish town; 
women still muffled up to the eyes and mouths (a dress dis 
carded in the large towns, but still common in remote places). 
Women are being ill-treated, having been looked on as slaves 
for centuries; they walk while the man rides the donkey; 'they 
stay at home while the men eat out in cafes and restaurants; 

1 Two Cowley Fathers (Rev. Richard Morley, S.S.J.E., and Rev. Francis 
Hanlon, S.S.J.E.) were drowned when their boat capsized in the Lake of 
Bays, Ontario, Canada, on 2pth May, 1954- 

159 



they are pushed aside in the scramble for tram seats (as I found 
I never once got a seat) and almost pushed into the sea in the 
stampede for getting on to a boat. A shipwreck among Turks 
would be a poor time for women; none of them would ever 
get on to one of the boats. Nor have they (quite) souls. Nor 
may they eat with men: not even the Consul's wife in her own 
house when her husband has Turks to lunch. While as for 
bathing (in remote places such as Trebizond) one would 
probably be stoned. It will take at least 50 years before they 
catch up with the West in this matter. Constantinople is a very 
noble and exciting city the Bosphorus is glorious. Sfanta] 
Sophia is now a museum. I got South to Antioch, and saw the 
earliest Christian church (a cave, supported by columns), and to 
Smyrna and Ephesus, the latter extremely moving. The great 
Temple of Artemis was destroyed in C.3, and its ruins lie in 
a swamp. But the ruined city the Roman one, that St Paul 
saw is very extensive: forum, Marble Way, theatre (where 
the Ephesians shouted for 2 hours about Diana), etc. Then, on 
my last day, I got to Troy imagine the thrill. The sea is now 
4 or 5 kilometres back, so the Greeks couldn't now watch the 
walls from their ships. 

I didn't mean to bore you with my Ruins; don't do more 
than look at the pictures. But when I write a book, I feel you 
should have it. 

By the way, 1 have been looking in vain in the Missal for 
a collect you once quoted, "Domine, in manus tuas sunt exiti" 
[sic], or anyhow something like that, I may have got the words 
wrong. 1 I wonder just where it is? If you happen to remember, 
tell me sometime. You'll by now be out of Retreat, I 
suppose. . . . 

Much love. 
R.M. 



misquotation from a Psalm not a Collect; see below p. 162. 
160 



2o, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.I 
26th July, 1954 1 

My dear Hamilton, 

Thank you so much for yours of I4th. How interesting to 
meet a Roumanian 1 who knows Tomi (more correctly Tomis ?) 2 
and has seen Ovid's grave ! Is it kept in nice order ? It is the 
present-day Constantius, of course; 3 no chance of my having 
got there, as it is behind that annoying Curtain. As I heard 
an ingenuous American youth in an Istanbul hotel say to his 
friend, " I promised my father I wouldn't go anywhere near 
the Iron Curtain." I suppose his dad feared that if he did, hands 
from the Other Side might reach out and drag him over- So I 
couldn't visit the scene of Ovid's woes, or see those terrible 
Getans with icicles in their beards. (Though actually no doubt 
in June and July they would have thawed out.) It always makes 
me rather sad to think that the barbarians of Tomis were hurt 
by the accounts of them and their country in Tristia and Ex 
Ponto; though one wouldn't really have thought they would 
have got hold of those works. I am sure that is the least 
agreeable part of the Euxine. The other end, the Colchis end 
where I travelled, was, do you remember, the home of the 
Golden Fleece and its ferocious custodians, and the more 
ferocious Medea and her father. I like to think of the Argo 
voyaging along that sea, and visiting the ports which I saw. 
The ship Argo was a familiar craft in my family; we called our 
canoe after it and struck out into the waters of the Mediter 
ranean to some rock where the fleece hung. I think it is a good 
thing to be brought up on the classical tales; they register 
deeply and for life. 

Of course I soon found that phrase I was looking for, in 

1 Then an employee at Phillips Book Store in Cambridge, Mass. 

2 Of these alternative spellings "Tomis" is the more usual 

3 Usually known as Constanza. 

161 



Psalm 68 : "Domini, Domini, exitus mortis'' 1 It is expanded in 
our Visitation of Sick Children into "to whom the issues of 
life and death belong." 2 

I am sorry about the disturbing changes in the disposal of 
your Fathers. You will miss those who are going far away, 
like Fr Pedersen. . . . Well, as you say, the thing goes on, 
irrespective of personalities. Yesterday in chapel we sang 
" Disposer supreme". ..." To frail earthen vessels, and things 
of no worth, entrusting thy riches, which aye shall endure. 
Those vessels soon fail, though full of thy light, and at thy 
decree are broken and gone; thence brightly appeareth thy 
truth in its might, as through the clouds riven the lightnings 
have shone". 3 Let us hope so. I wonder if the Roumanian 
ever sent you Ruins. My sister is still reading it, a small piece 
each evening. She says she likes to go to bed with a nice 
picture in words in her mind; she has now got to the end of the 
section called " The Haunting Gods", which deals with ruined 
temples, churches, abbeys, etc. I am now embarking on my 
novel, but haven't properly got down to it yet, as I have been 
busy with recovering from Turkey, odds and ends, and writing 
some poetry, besides seeing a lot of people. Also writing a 
longish article for the Times Lit. Sup. about A History of the 
Crusades.* Are you interested in John Addington Symonds ? 5 
He left an interesting MS diary, now in the hands of the London 
Library (on whose Committee I am), and the question is, is it 
fit to publish or not ? It is full of rather surprising things about 

1 "God is the Lord, by whom we escape death. 5 * Ps. 68.20. 

2 See "A Prayer for a Sick Child"; one of the occasional Collects 
appended to the Order for the Visitation of the Sick in the Book of Common 
Prayer. 

3 See The English Hymnal, Hymn 178 : 

Then brightly appeareth the arm of thy might, 
As through the clouds breaking the lightnings have shone. 

4 See "The Tragedy of the Crusades," Times Literary Supplement, 2pth 
October, 1954. See above p. 87. 

5 Historian and translator (1840-1893). 

162 



people, such as Dr C. J. Vaughan, Headmaster of Harrow 
(brother of my great-uncle by marriage) 1 under whom he was 
in the 1840'$. No more space, as you observe! But much 
love. 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
4th August, ip54f 

My dear Hamilton, 

Our last letters crossed, yours of 2yth July, mine of a few 
days earlier. I was much interested in yours, and very sorry 
that your friend Mrs Paine has "poped", as we call it here. 
Why do they do it, these sane, intelligent, reasoning Anglicans, 
who have had the faith and the sacraments all their lives, been 
nourished by them and known God through them ? I do find 
it hard to understand. I really, I suppose, agree with someone 
who said lately that the Roman Church is not a Church for 
adults. Perhaps the Anglican Church is the only Church which 
is this, do you think? But worse than the rather trashy non 
sense they have to swallow is, of course, the barrier they set up, 
the iron curtain between themselves and other Christians. 
Surely a Christianity which won't worship with other 
Christians, outside their own exclusive body, is self- 
condemned? I hate to read their interpretations of what they 
believe Our Lord meant and said about it; how can they be so 
astray as to a character and purpose so clearly shown us in the 
Gospels ? If you ever talk about it to Mrs Paine, I wonder if 
you will get much light on that question. A Portuguese friend 
of mine once said the Church had to show by its exclusiveness 

1 In an earlier letter to Father Johnson R. M. had said that C. J. Vaughan 
was an uncle of her great-uncle Canon E. T. Vaughan, though she later 
corrected this to brother. See Letters to a Friend, p. 286. 

163 



that it had the truth in a unique way and mustn't seem to 
condone the worship of those who hadn't. But I am very sorry 
it has come between you and your valued friendship. Though 
perhaps it won't. My cousin Jean 1 and I never discuss it, 
and are very good friends, with so much common ground. She 
was really delighted when I came back to the Church, and did 
feel it was a supremely important thing. . . . Well, it seems that 
some people must see things in that way; I think argument 
with them achieves nothing. I am interested in what 
you say about English and American Anglicanism. Yes, how 
different are their roots and background and growth. I don't 
know nearly enough about Amer: Anglicanism, or Anglo- 
Catholicism. When did it start ? Did they get the repercus 
sions of the Tractarians? I doubt if there was anything of our 
lyth century A.Cism among the Episcopalians of Virginia and 
Maryland in that century. A pity, in a way, that more of our 
High Church refugees from Cromwell didn't go across the 
Atlantic, to counteract the Mayflower. Or the Non-Jurors of 
the end of the century. But when did it begin ? When the 
S.S.J.E. first set up a branch there, what kind of reception did 
they have ? And when was that ? 2 I vaguely remember in an 
American novel or two early this century noticing that some 
of the Episcopalians went to "high" New York churches; I 
mean, somewhere round 1914, I suppose. If there is a history 
of the Ang: Church in America, I would like to read it. 
There should be something like Dr Carpenter's The Church 
in England, which is an excellent account of the shaping and 
development of the Church. I will send you my review of it, 
if I can lay hands on it, and you could probably get hold of the 
book itself from your Roumanian bookseller or another. I 
think it v.g. 

1 Jean Smith. 

2 Between 1870 and 1880, when the Cowley Fathers first started working 
in the U.S., they met a good deal of opposition from Low Churchmen on 
account of their "ritualism." 

164 



I am just off for a week to the I[sle] of W[ight] with my 
sister, and am choosing books to take with me. I shall be 
writing, too (my novel). And (since it is not Turkey) bathing, 
if the weather allows. And driving about with my sister and 
her friend 1 , picnicking and exploring the corners of that nice 
island, which I love. I might take T. A. Lacey's book that 
you mention, perhaps, and Dr Kirk's on the Church, not 
The Vision of God but another. 2 I must go to the Lfondon] 
L[ibrary] to-morrow and look about on the theology 
shelves. 

I only learned the other day a thing that interests me about 
Alice Meynell, and that you probably know. I always thought 
that it was Coventry Patmore whom she loved, and to whom 
she wrote that poem "Renunciation" ("I must not think of 
thee . . .") 3 but it seems it was a priest of her own persuasion, 
whom she loved so much that his superiors had to move him 
elsewhere. What a lot of this priest-devotion there must always 
have been ! I expect you know it from personal experience. 
It may be quite innocent, and quite unreciprocated; but what 
an embarrassment to the priest, and how difficult to know how 
to meet it ! Without, I mean, being either unkind or dangerously 
encouraging. . . . 

My love always, 
R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.I 
i$th August, 1954! 

My dear Hamilton, 

Again our letters have crossed. Yours (begun Aug. 2) 
reached me on the I[sle] of W[ight]; mine was posted Aug. 5. 

1 Nancy Willetts. 

2 Probably K. E. Kirk's The Apostolic Ministry (i94<5). 

3 See "Renouncement" by Alice Meynell (1847-1922). 

165 



I am now returned, after a nice but not very warm or dry ten 
days. Such was the weather that I bathed only twice. But my 
sister and I enjoyed driving about the island, its downs and 
little lanes, which are much more attractive than the over- 
built-up coasts. The best thing is the ruins of Quarr Abbey, 
lying in a field above the sea, huge fragments of a great 
Cistercian Abbey. But I rather like it all, except the vulgar sea 
resorts, I understand your difficulty about talking to Mrs 
Paine. 1 Though wouldn't it be interesting and enlightening if 
you were able to ? I always want to know what are the real 
reasons behind these conversions from Anglicanism. One 
understands those from agnosticism or from the unlovely 
Protestant churches. But I am interested in what urges High 
Anglicans, who 'have something so good already, and have 
believed in it so firmly. Did someone persuade Mrs Paine, or 
did she think it out alone ? . . . 

20th Aug. Your letter of i6th came this morning, so we just 
avoided crossing again. I don't much like crossing; for one 
thing, you tend to answer again my letter before the last (in 
case I might not have got your first answer to it) and not 
comment or reply to the one you got later, so I don't know 
what I told you, and may repeat myself. I do quite forget what 
I said in my letter of the 5th; did I ask you if you had ever 
suffered from excessive devotion from those who come to 
you? . . . You are right about pars tibi. It is one of the errors 
I discovered too late, and listed at the end of my copy for future 
correction. 2 There are only too many such, alas. I'm glad you 
too like "Supreme, quales, Arbiter. 9 ' 3 In stanza 3, are "they", 
who are borne like clouds to do thy will, the vessels (broken 

X R. M. has added a note here: "This was written before your last 
letter, of course." 

2 In Pleasure of Ruins (p. 12) a quotation from the elegy on pagan Rome 
by Hildebert of Lavardin (1056-1133), "Par tibi, Roma, nihil" ("there is 
nothing thy equal, Rome"), is misprinted as "Pars tibi . . ." 

3 "Disposer supreme . . .". 

166 



and gone) or the lightnings? 1 It's not in Phillimore's Latin 
Hymns that you sent me. 2 

I expect those Latin rhymes may be by the Dean. 3 In 1888 
he would be ^bout 30, after all; he was a contemporary at 
Eton with my uncle Regi. Or of course it may have been his 
father. They are a classical family. I have just been giving 
Noel Annan, a young King's don, data about my own family 
connections for an essay he is writing for George Trevelyan's 
8oth birthday, about families and their inter-relationships and 
hereditary qualities. 4 

Do many Americans confuse purpose and propose ? It does 
seem illiterate. I remember your telling of a penitent who did 
it in confession. On the Isle of Wight we heard the most 
illiterate sermons. I think preachers should have a special 
licence before they mount the pulpit. It must put off so many 
people. I believe St Paul's, Knightsbridge is v.g. I might try- 
it sometimes. 

Much love. 

R.M. 



1 See The English Hymnal, Hymn 178: 

Those vessels soon fail, though full of thy light 

And at thy decree are broken and gone; 

Then brightly appeareth the arm of thy might, 

As through the clouds breaking the lightnings have shone. 

Like clouds they are borne to do thy great will, 
And swift as the winds about the world go; ... 

2 The Hundred Best Latin Hymns; selected by J. S. Phillimore (1926). 

3 R. M. probably means W. R. Inge (1860-1954). 

4 See N. G. Annan's essay " The Intellectual Aristocracy" in Studies in 
Social History, edited byj. H. Plumb (1955)* 

167 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
29th August, 



My dear Hamilton, 

Thank you so much for your entertaining letter written on 
the Feast of St Bart's. " Bartlemy the Bright " it was not, in 
this land; but to-day and yesterday really are, miraculously 
and for the first time in this dreadful summer, warm, with the 
sun appearing. I am driving up the Thames Putney-ward, with 
a companion who always seeks to bathe; 1 we think we can find 
a spot somewhere in the reaches of the river where we can go 
in. He works in Madrid and Salamanca, but spends August 
here, and always when we lunch together has his swim-suit in 
his pocket in case. ... I am feeling rather happy to-day, after 
a long and fruitful talk yesterday with - ... It is encouraging 
when someone one trusts, and someone with understanding, 
thinks one has "grown". How I hope I have, a little. After 
all, it would be strange if one didn't grow at all, going to daily 
Mass; though how pitifully little effect these great things have 
on one's life is a matter not only for distress but for wonder. 
How can it be, coming away day after day from that mystery, 
that one lives on this low level ? "Confession, absolution, com 
munion, then at it again," as H. G. Wells gibes. Well, that is 
life. ... 

Now my space is gone, and I wanted to ask you if you 
know where is that prayer I once copied out beginning, "Ut 
qui me, non meis mentis, intra viatorum numemm dignatus est 
aggregare, luminis sui claritatem infundens. ..." I have put no 
reference to it, and don't know where I found it. 2 You, who 
know all, may know this. With this nice bit of flattery I send 
my love and end my letter, which seems a trifle crowded. 



1 David Ley; see Letters to a Friend, p. 295. 

2 It is adapted from the Exultet, see above p. 30. 

168 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
8th September, 1954*}* 

My dear Hamilton, 

Your letter posted sist Aug. was rather especially good. 
Thank you for it. How endlessly kind you are to me, and how 
you manage to say just the things that I need, and that give me 
fresh stimulus. Also, thank you for reminding me where that 
fragment of prayer came from. Of course I remembered at 
once when you told me, and looked it up. I had stupidly 
forgotten even that I got it from you, and that you had supplied 
the "viatorum" in it. I read the whole tiling through again; 
how beautiful it is. Canon Hood might well have used the bit 
about the candle this morning at his solemn Mass on the name- 
feast of St Mary's Aldermary, before which he blessed his new 
candles, candlesticks, and crucifix, which someone had pre 
sented to the re-built church. I went to this on his invitation; 
a beautiful service, though for my more austere taste rather too 
much motion and gesture and fuss and intricate weaving about 
among the clergy. All part of "the structure", no doubt; and 
amazes the poore devat[sic], of course, but my bit of the 

structure is quieter and more to my taste. ... Is [it] right 

that there is very little Anglo-Catholicism in America ? Are 
there scarcely any churches which gorgeously sit deckt, are 
nearly all plaine and quite threadbare ? What a great pity, and 
how lucky we are in London, with so many to our mind. No 
wonder people like Mrs Paine feel they must go where there 
is more beauty. I like the look of St Paul's Knightsbridge very 
much; it is beautiful, rather dark, very ungarish. . . . 

Interesting about "felix culpa" 1 I had always supposed it 
St Augustine's; if so, end of C.4, 1 suppose. How old would 
that Mass be, I wonder? It could be before that; but also 

1 "O happy fault (which was counted worthy to have such and so great 
a redeemer!),'* see dieExultet. 

169 



might be after. Pope Zosimus in 417 ordered candles to be 
blessed; many "church writers spoke against it as heathen, both 
before and after this. The origin of the Paschal candle, says the 
Encyc. Brit., is lost in the mists of antiquity. Probably the Jews 
had it. Fr Martindale might well have done a 3rd book, 
"Dates of the Missals." But there are more specialised studies 
of Missals; some I have read, and will look up again. . . . 

Much love, 
R.M. 



2o,Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
24th September, 1954"]" 

My dear Hamilton, 

I am horrified by your account of your four termagants 
who have been sweeping over your parts. 1 I read a little about 
them in papers here, but not very much or very graphic. 
What an intimidating thing it must have been. I am thankful 
they have now swept by, and that "Carol" 2 didn't destroy your 
Monastery, as she well might have. I have been dunking about 
you with much concern. , . . 

I am learning to meditate a little, or trying to. I am doing 
the Book of Wisdom, chapter by chapter, it is such good and 
delightful stuff, isn't it ? so full of the Spirit of God and of 
Hagia Sophia. And how I like the gay career of the ungodly, 
vanishing away like the soft air, but meanwhile missing no 
flower of spring and crowning himself with rosebuds, how 
lovely. 3 . . . 

Yes, I remember Dr Addison's book on the Episcopal 
Ch[urch] in U.S. 4 ; it interested me. People say now that 

1 During September 1954 hurricanes caused much damage and many 
casualties on the east coast of the U.S. 

2 One of the hurricanes. 3 Wisdom 2. 3-8. 

4 Daniel D. Addison, The Episcopalians (New York, 1904). 

170 



a great deal of religion is spreading about, both in the Uni 
versities and elsewhere, but not predominatingly Afnglo-j 
C[atholic], in fact much more the middle and the slightly 
Evangelical type of churchmanship. What I mainly hear about 
is A.C.ism; at Cambridge the Franciscans at St BeneYs are 
attracting undergraduates, men and girls, and there are several 
good Deans and Chaplains, and Little St Mary's is a great 
centre; at Oxford St Mary Magdalen's, and I suppose still 
Cowley ? And perhaps St Barnabas still ? I don't know. I am 
interested that you think it a stronger movement in America. 
Yes, I must ask Canon Hood about it; not that I ever see 

him Perhaps I might ask him sometime to come and drink 

sherry with me. . . . 

Much love, 
R.M. 



Long Crichel House, 
nr. Wimborne, 

Dorset 
ist October, 1954! 

My dear Hamilton, 

I have a notion that I haven't got your latest letter with me 
here (where I am week-ending), but only the one posted i6th 
Sept., describing the four dreadful harpies who swept round 
you, and saying a lot more, which I have answered in my 
last letter before this. But I'm not quite certain whether I have 
had another letter since that or not: it is stupid of me, but 
when I get back I shall know; if I did have one, my having 
forgotten doesn't mean that I wasn't interested in it. ... 

I think I shall often go to weekday Mass at St Paul's, 
Knightsbridge (8.30, and only 5 minutes longer in the car [than 
to Grosvenor Chapel], and good both in Mass-execution and 
the church itself, which is very attractive). I think they have 

171 



there rather a large organization and staff and ecclesiastical 
Bustle; but this won't affect me. . . . 

I am week-ending with my friends here Raymond 
Mortimer [and] Eddy Sackville-West. . . . Also here for 
week-end are Jacobine Hichens that was (who wrote that novel 
about a girl who didn't go R.C. . . -) 1 now married to Lionel 
Sackville-West. , . . They and I form a little Anglican enclave 
in this delightful compatiy of agnostics and one convert; we 
have just been a walk and enjoyed a Church gossip most 
unusual in this house ! Now I must get ready to drive out to 
luncheon a few miles away. Much love. I shall write again 
soon. 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
nth October, 1954! 

My dear Hamilton, 

Your letter of 28th Sept. arrived some days back; thank 
you so much for it. I find in your letters a lot of food for 
thought; that Ember Wed. collect you quote turned my mind 
towards "sedulous service" 2 , and that, at least, should be one's 
aim. . . . Canon Hood is ... coming [to sherry and I might 

ask [him] . . . about the Church in America 1 have also 

Gerard Irvine and his brother James and wife (both [Gros- 
venor] Chapel members), Jacobine Hichens , . . and my cousin 
Jean Smith the Papist. So I must be careful that Jacobine doesn't 

talk about the Bp of Rome and his detestable enormities 

She is now married to a nice quiet Anglican (quiet, but wildly 
High), and about to bring forth a nice little Anglican infant 

1 Noughts and Crosses. 

2 See post-communion Collect for Ember Wednesday in September 
(". . . ut quae sedula servitute . . ."). 

172 



I wish I could get Fr Talbot's Addresses? they are still re- 
binding, but I've ordered them from Mowbrays. I must tell 
you about my sherry party when I next write ; I hope the guests 
will all get on together! Under the mellowing influence of 
alcoholic liquor, people usually do. How I wish you could 
drop down among us and join us. Only then I suppose I 
shouldn't want to converse with anyone else, which wouldn't 
do. 

Love, 
R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
2ist October, ip54f 

My dear Hamilton, 

Thank you for two admirable (and very helpful) letters, of 
I2th and lyth, the latter received to-day. I was going to write 
to you to-day, so am glad your letter came before I did so. I 
think my last letter to you was written on the nth, the day 
before the sherry party 

By the way, Canon Hood, when I mentioned you as a 
distant cousin, radiated pleasure. He referred to "a delightful 
sight of you in 1919," when he stayed there [Cambridge, Mass.] 
a few days, and said what a delightful person you were. I don't 
think he has seen you since ? . . . Another priest who praised 
you was Fr [Cecil] Wood, who came to the Chapel to assist 
in the noon celebration last Sunday; he spoke to me outside 
afterwards, and said he had tremendously enjoyed an evening 
with you in September, during his American tour. I don't 
think he had known that I knew you, before I asked him if 
he had seen you. Your name seems to light people up ! 

Thank you for your advice about Mass. I am glad you 

think I needn't feel tied to ... [Grosvenor] Chapel; though it 

1 Edward Keble Talbot, Retreat Addresses, edited by Lucy Meiizies (i954) 

173 



does pull at me with the bonds of gratitude and deep affection, 
and remembrance of all I learned there and the habits I formed, 
which can never be abandoned while I have health and strength 
for morning outings, and these show no signs of flagging, 
indeed, long practice has made me much tougher about them. 
But I now plan to divide my days between the Chapel and St 
Paul's [Knightsbridge,] and am glad you approve. On Mondays 
... and Wednesdays and Fridays, I go to St Paul's . . . which 
I like extremely. . . . They have it in a small chapel in the 
south aisle, always several people there, nothing could be 
better. The confessional seems to me to be rather publicly 
placed (and unusually), in the very middle among the seats ! 
But I presume that during confessions the chapel is otherwise 
empty, or it would be all quite audible. . . . On the other 
mornings Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday I go 
to Mass at the Chapel, only communicating on Sundays. . . . 
I think this compromise is satisfactory, don't you? I don't 
want to desert the Chapel more than this ... I was very 
anxious while that horrid " Hazel " l ploughed her destructive 
way overland, lest she should take Mass, in her stride, and 
much relieved when the news came that she hadn't. Re 
intercommunion, of course we must keep and pass on our 
sacramental heritage; but is there harm in praying with those 
who have it in another form, such, e.g., as Wesleyans, most 
devout communicants who use, I think, our P[rayer] Bfook], 
but have no bishops ? It seems to me to be Christian one 
ness to do this. . . . 

Much love. 
R.M. 



hurricane. 
174 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.I 
7th November, I954f 

My dear Hamilton, 

Remembrance Sunday. A poppy on my coat, another on 
my car. I attended divine worship in Knightsbridge, a very 
beautiful service with excellent discourse from the incumbent, 1 
whom I like more and more (so far only from afar). I went 
there also for All Saints' Mass; All Souls to the Chapel. . . . 

Thank you for your interesting letter of 26th Oct. I like 
the picture of the devout and luckless people of Worcester all 
at church while the cads of Droitwich bought up their markets ! 
Of course you are right about the rather proletarian clergy; 
they are needed, and it is right that we should have them. I 
must try and not feel, as the Preacher puts it in Ecclesiasticus 38, 
that to some it is given to follow the plough and turn the 
potter's wheel and uphold the fabric of the world, but not to 
sit in the places of counsel and where parables are spoken. Of 
course it isn't so; but a trifle of polish does oil die wheels, so 
to speak. It is much to be hoped that the other type will soon 
present themselves in greater numbers. . . . 

I have just cut out from the Sunday Times an article by 
J. B. Priestley about your cousin J. C. Powys, whom he much 
admires. I can't send you this herewith, but will put it in an 
envelope and despatch it overseas, and you will doubtless 
receive it in some weeks. There are some interesting books in 
to-day's reviews: the autobiography of Edwin Muir, 2 [and] 
two books by men who entered monasteries, one Redemp- 
tionist, where he stayed 6 years and was then turned out, he 
knew not why, 3 the other by Fr Bede Griffiths, O.S.B., who 
stayed in and was happy. 4 He was a convert, the other an Irish 

1 Rev. E. B. Henderson. 

2 Edwin Muir, The Story and the Fable (1940; revised ed., 1954). 

3 Gary MacEoin, Nothing is Quite Enough (1954)- 

4 Bede Griffiths, The Golden String (1954)- 

175 



born R.C., quite poor by origin. Both are reviewed by Philip 
Toynbee (Arnold TVs son, and Gilbert Murray's grandson), 
himself a young man of no creed, who marvels at this entering 
into rigorous religious rule and shutting out the delightful and 
valuable world around, which he himself so greatly enjoys; 
but he is much impressed by this sacrifice for something they 
believe in, and which he sees must, therefore, have some truth 
in it. 1 

I am reading Arnold Toynbee's new vols. of his history, 
which I find extremely interesting. 2 His ex-father-in-law, 
Gilbert Murray, complains that he has "gone all mystical", 
which is wrong for a historian. But I like it, though I do see 
that he isn't always on sound ground in his deductions. . . . 
10 p.m. I went into St Paul's Vicarage at 7.30, with about 20 
others [for the Sunday evening "Open House"]; Fr Henderson 
I liked very much; he read aloud a speech of a Bishop at 
Minneapolis, 3 and there followed a kind of fireside chat or 
discussion about all manner of things, very nice, though rather 
low-brow. They talked, inter alia, about the Roman Church, 
which is rather aggressively attacking Anglicanism just now, 
and how far it was wise to make criticisms in return. ... I 
didn't raise my voice, feeling too new except once, to 
tell them the meaning of "eirenic", 4 which no one knew 
and they were sending for a dictionary; but I imagine 
Fr H. must have known, and was kindly coming down 
to the level of his company, so as not to seem a know-all. 
But I enjoyed the talk; he is very entertaining, nice and 
friendly. . . . 

We are having floods here; perhaps a few just men will 
be spared. I should like a voyage in an ark. I wish when in 
Turkey I had climbed Ararat and found splinters of the ancient 

1 See The Observer, ydi November, 1954. 

2 A. J. Toynbee, A Study of History (Vols. vn-x, 1954). 

8 At the Anglican Congress at Minneapolis in August 1954. 
4 " Tending to peace." 

176 



ark, as travellers were used to do; they made good relics, and 
wrought miracles. . . . 

Much love always. 
R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
loth November, 1954 

My dear Hamilton, 

Here is the J. C. Powys article I wrote of; I don't know 
when you will get this, I've quite forgotten how long the ocean 
mail takes. I remember we used once always to use it, but that 
was 4 years ago. 

I wonder if The Cornerstone, by Mme [Zoe] Oldenbourg 
(translated) will come your way. It is a historical novel about 
the Albigensian period very vivid and full of graphic pictures. 
I have only just begun it; but it is being hailed as a masterpiece 
in its genre. 

How very ignorant even clever and educated people often 
are about history sometimes ! I have just read The Golden 
Thread 1 , an autobiography by Bede Griffiths, O.S.B., who 
some years ago became R.C. and entered Prinknash. When 
at Oxford he read for Honour Mods, read privately Aristotle, 
Aquinas, Dante, St Augustine (in Latin), much in the way of 
Greek and Latin literature, and instead of Greats took the 
English Lit. School, and was obviously able (as well as a natural 
religious mystic). But, can you believe it, he knew so little of 
the elementary history that is in every child's history book, 
that it never occurred to him that the churches he saw about 
him and attended (he was a devout Anglican, for a time) had 
ever in the course of their history used anything but the English 
B[ook of] Cfommon] Pfrayer], which he must have supposed 
to have been produced about 1000 years before it was ! That 
1 The Golden String. 
177 



they had said Mass in Latin never struck him. Nor did he 
know that England was Christianized from Rome in C.6. 
When these facts burst upon him, he turned towards Rome 
and decided it was the True Church, and joined it. Such gaps 
in the knowledge of an intelligent and educated young man 
are very odd. I suppose most children of literate families learn 
about St Augustine and the English conversion in their first 
history lessons. 

I know R.C.s who are getting rather worried about the 
Pope's recent pronouncements; he is said to be failing and 
getting senile. Can Popes be retired on grounds of health ? 
This new Day of Mary certainly seems redundant. 1 People 
wonder what he will pronounce next. . . . 

My love as always, 
R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hlnde St., W.I 
yd December, 1954*]" 

My dear Hamilton, 

You must try and forgive my over-long pause between 
letters: it's not that I forgot, but that life lately has been, with 
one thing and another, rather harassing, and I waited till things 
cleared a little before writing, since you aren't one of the 
people I can write to about other things while my mind is full 
of things I don't refer to 

This . . . letter is a poor return to your two very good ones, 
of Nov. 9 and 28. I am glad you liked to have that Priestley 
article on J. C. Pjpwys], I thought it good and interesting. He 
is a critic of good sense. About Arnold Toynbee's new vols. 
of his history: I atn finding them very interesting, because, 
besides his tremendous learning, he has ideas. I know these 

1 Presumably R. M. means the Feast of the Assumption of the 
B.V.M.; but this doctrine was defined by Pope Pius XII four years pre 
viously, in 1950. 

178 



new vols. have had a lot of criticism, and especially of course 
from R.C.s, who are annoyed with him because he gives good 
reasons why he shied away from going over to Rome some 
years ago. ... In his earlier vols. he took a much more R. 
Catholic standpoint, and I believe thought seriously of going 
over, but thought better of it. In vol. 10 of this new part of 
his history, he has changed his standpoint, explains that he was 
put off by the unchanging faults of the Church, and now has a 
much vaguer and more universal religion, towards which he 
believes that history, led by God, is working. Of course this 
doesn't please his R.C. critics, who seem to me unfair to him. 
Canon Roger Lloyd takes a much fairer view. Of course some 
criticism is justified. His father-in-law, Prof. Gilbert Murray, 
a lifelong agnostic, complains that Arnold has "gone all 
mystical"; and some historians have said that he twists facts 
to suit his theories. All the same, it is interesting. He is so 
amazingly learned that one learns an immense amount from 
every page; he seems to have been that kind of infant prodigy 
who read Xenophon in Greek at the age of 4, and remembers 
all he has learnt, so that his mind is a wonderful storehouse. 
One must allow such a man a few quiddities. But it is unfair 
to say that his historical trends are impersonal; on the other 
hand, they are, in his view, guided by God, towards some far- 
off divine event to which we are working. I must read The 
Everlasting Man again. 1 But G. K. Cfhesterton] wasn't a man 
of A.T.'s intellectual stature, of course. 

Yes, our liturgical funerals are very beautiful. I am glad 
you got to that one, and were able to see the daughters. Our 
short requiem Masses are also v.g. We had one in G. Chapel 
yesterday morning. . . . 

"Marjorie Bowen" is now dead; her name was Mrs 
Campbell, I think. 2 I didn't know her, and not her books much 

1 G. EL Chesterton, The Everlasting Man (1925). 

2 Gabrielle M. V. Long, nie Campbell (1886-1952) used the name 
"Marjorie Bowen" as one of her pseudonyms. 

179 



either. No, she wasn't a Christian, I believe. But she ought to 
have admired the Wesleys. I haven't read that book 1 , though 
I have read one or two of hers. She began at about 17, with 
The Viper of Milan, and wrote historical novels for many many 
years. Not first class, but competent. ... I like Advent to be 
here. I have been reading those Advent Benediction things, 
"Rorate Coeli," for Advent I "... et iniquitates nostrae, quasi 
ventus, abstulerunt nos . . ." 2 beautiful, but desolate. The 
Roman "Stir-up Sunday" collect seems better than ours, with 
its "remedia majora"^ instead of "plenteously be rewarded". I 
must send you my Xmas card, in a sea-letter. My love. 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
i6th December (O Sapientia), I954J 

My dear Hamilton, 

Thank you for your letter begun on the 8th. I'm sorry 
mine came unstuck; I can't think why it should, except that 
they don't make the edges sticky all round, only one bit. Still, 
it is meant to hold and if it doesn't the P.O. should sticky more 
of it. I don't know what they do to these letters in the planes. 
I wonder if this will reach you for Christmas; I hope it will. 
I sent you my card by surface mail, and that may or mayn't 
reach you before the day; you never know. . . . 

It is odd how differently people react to faith; some receive 
it so much more easily than others. . . . You know, Hamilton, 
there are and always have been a lot of things I can't and don't 
try to accept; I just can't feel they matter, and don't strain 
after them. I have God, Christ, the Holy Spirit, and the Mass; 

1 "Marjorie Bowen," Wrestling Jacob : A Study of the Life of John Wesley 
and Some Members of the Family (1937). 

2 " Drop down dew, ye heavens . . . and our iniquities, like the wind, 
have carried us away." 

3 "Greater blessings"; see Collect for 25th Sunday after Trinity. 

180 



the rest I don't concern myself with, except as the ancient 
idiom which enshrines these central things for me. Does this 
shock you? I don't think it will; you understand so well. 
Anyhow, as I said, minds are so different, and must work on 
things in their own way, and God will make allowance for our 
limitations. . . . O Sapiential we must pray that she will lead 
us all along the road. 

I hope you will have a good Christmas. I shall go to be 
shriven at St Paul's, Knightsbridge, and, I think, go to the 
Midnight Mass there too though perhaps I may feel drawn by 
old affection to go to the Chapel. Then to Romford on Xmas 
morning early, to stay with my sister till 27th. I expect you 
will [be] under snow. Not so (I trust) we. My love for 
Christmas. . . . 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
2$th December, I954J 

My dear Hamilton, 

How good to get your letter begun Dec. 20, posted 22nd, 
arrived 28th (not bad for this season). You say a lot of things 
in it that sustain my mind in its present somewhat drooping 
state. . . . Yes, I did indeed need the Church, and still do; 
however unfit I sometimes feel for it, I hope to find more and 
more in it to appropriate till I die CRESCAT nostrae salutis 
effectus?- Thank you, I like too that Advent ember prayer, very 
much. What a rich storehouse the Missal is ! 

I had a quiet Christmas at Romford; my sister rather over 
tired; she can still see to work, but expects the cataract to stop 
her before long. I'm sorry about your snow; I hope it didn't 
block you altogether. None here yet; in fact, it is wonderful 
mild weather so far. This morning I had, as it were, two 
1 " May the fruits of our salvation be increased'' 
181 



Masses; one at the Grosvenor at 8.15, then came home and 
heard a broadcast of one at 9 at my other place of worship; it 
came over very well. I suppose not to perplex prayer-book 
listeners, the prayer of oblation was put after the communion. 
Fr Henderson has a very pleasant quiet voice, which came over 
well. . . . 

I am sending you by surface mail a page of the Sunday 
Times containing " Books^of the Year", a symposium to which 
a lot of writers contributed. I wrote about Arnold Toynbee's 
new vols. of his History ; difficult to compress what I wanted 
to say into 300 words, but I had a shot at it. Have you come 
across Dialogues of Alfred Whitehead, by an American Boswell 
called Price? 1 They interest me a good deal; I was given it 
for Christinas. This Boswell took down Whitehead's con 
versations over a number of years, when the Whiteheads were 
living in Memorial Drive, Cambridge, close to you, I suppose. 
Mrs W. joins in, and it is good talk. All manner of discussable 
questions turn up. One doesn't always agree with the great 
man, but he is always interesting. I think he gets St Paul rather 
wrong; he regards him as very dour and stern, and regrets 
his giving Christianity the shape it took. He forgets the 
splendid lyrical passages, about Charity, 2 putting on the whole 
armour etc., 3 a hundred more, which make his letters so full 
of the poetry of Christianity. But he (Prof W.) doesn't much 
like the Jews, on the whole. I have been reading also another 
American book, by Wallace Notestein of Harvard, a history 
professor, on the state of the English people 1603-30, just before 
the colonization of New England. 4 That too interests me, 
though badly written, like so many American books. On the 
whole, so many American writers, even those of plenty of 
scholarship, seem to have little feeling for style. But they are 

1 Dialogues of Alfred North Whitehead, as recorded ly Lucien Price (1954). 
2 1 Cor. 13-1-13. 3 EpL 6. 1-20. 

4 W. Notestein, The English People on the Eve of Colonization, 1603-30 
(1954). 

182 



very good scholars. This Notestein writes for Americans, to 
explain to them what their first colonizers were like in England. 
He obviously has great sympathy with puritamsm more than 
I have, or you, for we think it nearly wrecked our Church. 
On this, and the religious conflict in C.iy that led to the Civil 
War, C. V. Wedgwood writes excellently, in a new book that 
I am also reading, the first volume of the long book she is 
writing on the Civil Wars. 1 She is v.g. Dear Hamilton, I do 
hope you will have a happy year, beginning your second half 
century of celebrating Mass. You are very kind to me, as 
always where should I be without you? 

Love, 
R.M. 



1 C. V. Wedgwood, The King's Peace (1955), die first volume of her 
History of the Civil Wars, The Great Rebellion. 

183 



1955 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., IV.i 
itfh January, I955f 

My dear Hamilton, 

Yours of 4th Jan. came on the loth, thank you so much for 
it. I have been thinking about several things in it; mostly 
concerned with the various different approaches to religious 
faith. I do agree that the specifically Protestant approach is 
much more difficult than the Catholic one, which is a daily 
entry into or anyhow to the gates of the visible symbols of 
the kingdom, with its rites and acts and words and mysteries; 
all we have to do is to look and listen and feel we are in it. 
Whereas the Protestant is, I suppose, much more thrown on to 
looking back at what he believes happened long ago, and 
accepting some interpretation of it, with difficulty often. Yet 
it is extraordinary with what conviction and ardour evangelical 
Christians have done this; making their redemption hang on 
the death of Christ, to which they seem to give far more 
importance than to his life. Whereas the Catholic enters the 
visible courts, enters into his "myth" ("myth" is defined by 
someone as "a popular concept encircling a nucleus of truth") 
and gets at the truth, or some of it, that way. It is much easier; 
I could have done no other, with any success or benefit, I think, 
though so many thousands have and do. Without frequent 
Mass, I don't think I could pray, except in a very barren and 
sceptical way. Mass sheds the light by which we perceive and 
know what things we ought to do ; though I suppose the power 
to fulfil the same could come by prayer, only with more 
difficulty. Don't you prefer I do the Latin form of that 
collect P 1 I always use it now. I like the greater terseness of 
"ut et quae agenda sunt, videant; et ad implenda quae viderint, 
convalescant" (good word). 2 This is the form I have copied into 

1 Collect for 1st Sunday after Epiphany. 

2 ". . . that they may both perceive what they ought to do, and may 
have strength to fulfil the same.'* 

187 



my Preces Privatae. By the way, why does Knox say he is 
translating from the Vulgate ? He so often gets right away from 
it, and obviously is referring to the Greek. 1 As in Romans 12. 
3, where the Vulgate (and the Missal) has "Non plus sapere 
quam oportet sapere, zed sapere ad sobrietatem" which is rather 
nice, but Knox has (like the Authorized Version more or less) 
"not to think highly of hjmself beyond his just estimation, but 
to have a sober esteem of himself,'* which is I suppose probably 
what the Greek means, tho' it could mean either, couldn't it ? 
I don't know how the Revised Version renders it. But the 
two are quite different. 

I haven't seen the Reinhold Niebuhr article you quote from. 
But I can't ever feel in touch with him, somehow; he lays 
emphasis on history, rather than on the present working of the 
Logos, which I find a more possible approach. One must have 
both: but perhaps people are divided as to which is the more 
significant, and the more saving, for them personally. 

I agree with you that the Notestein account of the early 
C.iy Englishman's attitude towards his nation and his religion 
is very unpleasing, tho* I fear it was to a great extent so, and 
that this was the attitude those puritans took with them to New 
England. I have been reading (and reviewing) C. V. Wedg 
wood's The Kings Peace, which I think you would enjoy; it 
deals with the years 1637-41, very graphically. The picture it 
gives of the militant puritans, as of the Laudian tyranny, is 
rather dreadful, though not worse than we knew already, if we 
have studied the period at all. Such shocking bigotry and 
cruelty on all sides, except for a few reasonable and peaceable 
men, such as Chillingworth, 2 Falkland, 3 and those like-minded. 
Laud actually wanted to burn alive a poor illiterate stonemason 

1 R. A. Knox's translation of the New Testament is, according to the 
sub-tide, "newly translated from the Latin Vulgate". But in the footnotes 
frequent references are made to Greek and Hebrew sources. 

2 William Chillingworth (1602-1644), Anglican divine, author of The 
Religion of Protestants. 

8 Lucius Gary, second Viscount Falkland (1610 ?-i64s). 

188 



who had spoken disapprovingly of the Anglican hierarchy in 
public. Certainly we are more humane now. If we have 
"morals without religion" often, we don't have so much 
religion without morals as once or rather with perverted and 
cruel morals. Though that is just what the South African 
government has, and all those Calvinist Dutch adherents. , . . 
It is nice to have the Christmas turmoil over, and be able 
to settle down to work. I haven't got far with my novel, but 
shall get on with it, I hope, now. I had a sudden invitation 
from my cousins in Ipswich, Mass., 1 to join them in a Jamaican 
bungalow in February ; it sounded delicious, bathing in a warm 
sea, coconut palms, boating about among the islands my idea 
of heaven. But of course I can't. Much too costly to get there, 
and I am tied here at present, by a number of things. Strange 
to think of those warm seas now when the snow lies in the 
London streets so thick that it is hard to drive through, where 
it hasn't been cleared. I hope you keep reasonably warm. I 
drive to Mass through the untrodden snows of Hyde Park, 
which looks very beautiful. No : surely the difference between 
prose and poetry is a matter of sound, not of subject ? No space 
to pursue this, or for anything but my love. 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.I 
$th February, 1955 f 

My dear Hamilton, 

This can't be much of a letter, because I am deeply snowed 

under by jobs, including my piece that I have to write for the 

BBC "Critics", a programme of criticism of current shows 

(theatre, films, books, art, radio) which I have just gone on to 

again, after about a year. We meet on Thursdays for lunch and 

record our discussions, which are broadcast on the following 

1 William and Isadore Smith. 

189 



Sunday afternoon. I write a short script on radio, but we all 
discuss all the subjects, so have to see all the things. I am just 
in from a matinee of Richard II at the Old Vic and still have 
ahead before Thursday a film about escapes from German 
prison camps, some modern Italian pictures, and the reading 
of a book I don't particularly want to read. So my time gets 
pretty well filled up, and I get little for my novel. Thank you 
so much for yours dated ipth Jan. That was a fatal evening for 
me, for my car was stolen while I dined at the Athenaeum 
Club, and turned up next morning in a ditch outside Peter 
borough, after having been used in the night for "several serious 
crimes," the police say. Unfortunately the criminals had 
vanished. So my poor car is still in Peterboro' being repaired, 
while I ride perilously (and coldly) about London on the old 
bicycle I used during the war. Traffic seems thicker now. 
However, I am acquiring skill and expertise in the art. It is 
nice between 8 [and] 9 a.m. when I ride to Mass either at 
Gros. Chap, or St Paul's, and get back before the traffic is 
really thick. And I can ride nicely to the London Libjrary], 
which is a route with two one-way streets. All right too at 
week-ends, and in the evenings. My main trouble is the wind ! 
But I am quite enjoying it, tho* it will be nice to be lazy in my 
car again soon. 

I am interested in your comparison of Evangelical] and 
Cathfolic] religion, one basing itself on subjective experience, 
the other on sacramental life, which seems utterly true. How 
lucky I am to be in the second, "well in." I am sending you a 
Tablet review of The Great Prayer, by Hugh Ross Williamson 
(still just an Anglican . . ). Surely he goes too far in his claims 
for what Anglicans all believe ! You won't get this for some 
time, of course. All this R.C. harping on "authority" seems so 
narrow; they seem to look at religion in blinkers. And it is 
characteristically unfair to say that 400 years of protestantism 
have given us an "irrational prejudice against the teachings of 
Christ and his Church." It is this tendency to rule out Pro- 

190 



testants (including Anglicans) from the Church of Christ that 
is so tiresome and silly. And imagine saying that Quakers are 
prejudiced against "the teachings of Christ" ! I should say they 
know much [more] about these than most R.C.s do. 1 But I do 
think that in many quarters there is a growing tolerance and 
willingness to admit the Christianity of non-Romans, and 
willingness to co-operate with them in humane works. There 
is the very broadminded type represented by my friends the 
Brothers Mathew, for instance, of whom Lady Violet Bonham 
Carter says that the Bishop is "the only free-minded R.C." 
she knows. I know several more myself, actually though 
"free" isn't perhaps quite the right word. . . . 
No more room ! But my love. 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.I 
20th February, 1955! 

My dear Hamilton, 

Thank you so much for yours of the loth. It is good of 
you to write, and to answer my letters so splendidly, even when 
perhaps you don't feel like writing but more like book-binding, 
a state of mind I can so well understand. Last night I felt so 
little like doing any writing work that I decided I must instead 
change the linoleum cover of my large kitchen table; so I 
moved everything off it, stripped off the blue lino I had had 
there for some years, replaced it with a fine scarlet one that I 
had ready for it (after scrubbing the table), washed and put 
back on it all the crockery, tins of rice and sugar, etc., polished 
the lino with lavender polish, and now it looks so smart and 
smells so nice. This was really because on Shxove Tuesday 1 
am having a little cocktail party, the last gaiety I shall have of 

1 R. M/s comments on Roman Catholic attitudes relate to opinions 
expressed by the reviewer of The Great Prayer, see The Tablet, 5th February, 
1955- 

191 



that kind till after Easter. So I must tidy up the living-room 
and bedroom too, get out and wash my glasses, provide enough 
to drink, and generally abandon books and devote myself to 
worldly and social joys. This party will be after I go for 
shriving to St Paul's, so it will be a mixed day. I went to St 
Paul's this morning for Mass; Fr Henderson preached the best 
Lent sermon I have ever heard. He really is an inspiring person. 
... I go to Mass through snow and ice (shocking weather has 
returned !) on my admirable bicycle, car being still under repair. 
I find a bicycle slips less on iced roads than one's feet do, and 
feels quite safe, so don't worry about that. And one gets quite 
used to the traffic. Still, I shall be glad to get the car back! 
Your remark about being sacrificed by Druids made me laugh. 
Actually, one's bicycle used to be stolen sometimes over half a 
century ago ; and one was thrown off it, and from ponies, and 
fell from trees, and was all but drowned, and people were 
robbed and assaulted . . . no, we weren't secure, even in the 
iSpos. The fact is, this is a dangerous planet; perhaps all 
planets are? But a rather nice one, all the same; I shall miss 
it when I have to leave it. Yes, you are right; I am wasting 
my time over these "Critics" plays and films. It is nearly over 
now; in Lent I shall settle to my book firmly and renounce the 
world, which will be a good thing. 

I must look at Overton & Relton. 1 That Bish. John 
Conybeare was my great-great-great-great-(or was it 5 greats ?) 
grandfather. 2 I have his Defence of Revealed Religion. He was 
one of an unbroken line of Conybeare clergy down to my 
mother's brother 3 (who later turned R.C. however) and his 
son, my cousin James, 4 who was Provost of Southwell and is 
now retired, but actively helping in the parishes round Oxon. 

1 J. Overton and F. Relton, The English Church from the Accession of 
George I to the End of the Eighteenth Century (1714-1800) (1906). 

2 John Conybeare (1692-1755), Bp of Bristol, was R, M.'s great-great- 
great-grandfather; see genealogy of R. M. in Letters to a Friend. 

3 Rev. J. W. Edward Conybeare (1843-1931). 
4 Very Rev. W.James Conybeare (1871-1955). 

192 



(He wrote a little book I once sent you, Here's a Church.) 1 
Several of these Conybeare priests were more or less dis 
tinguished; one was professor of Anglo-Saxon at Oxford in 
the 1 8th century and very learned. 2 The Bishop of Bristol was 
a great controversialist, and was always at odds with Thomas 
Hearne the antiquary. I am glad Overton & R[elton] approve 
of him. The line of priests of that name is broken now, but 
not the line of succession in blood, as two of my uncle's grand 
sons are in Orders, but their name is McCormick, their mother 
having married the one-time Dean of Manchester of that 
name. 3 . . . 

You kindly ask questions about the car situation. (How I 
value your never failing sympathy, by the way!) I hope to 
get it back in a week or two. I pay nothing, all being covered 
by insurance; except [for] a little work I am having done on it 
which needed doing before it was stolen. It will be made quite 
safe and sound again. I shall feel happy in it when I have used 
bell, book and candle in it to exorcise the spirits of those bad 
men. ... I do look forward to having it back. It will be driven 
from Peterbro' by someone from the garage there. So all will 
end well. ... I do hope you keep well ? 

My love, 
R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
8th March, 1955! 

My dear Hamilton, 

Thank you for yours posted 28th Feb. I'm sorry you have 
no Max Beerbohm in your library. He is one of my very 

1 W. J. Conybeare, Here's a Church Let's Go In (194.6). 

* Rev. John J. Conybeare (1779-1829). 

3 R. M.'s first cousin Alison Conybeare m. Very Rev. J. G. Mc 
Cormick (1874-1924); their two sons being Canon J. C. McCormick 
(1906-1960) and Rev. M. E. McCormick (b. 1909). 

193 



favourite writers. His urbane irony and humour, his exquisite 
mannered style, his particular slant on his environment, are 
so endearingly charming. I have always loved him. I used, 
some 20 and 30 years ago, to see him in London sometimes; but 
now he never comes, he lives wholly at Rapallo. He is, of 
course, in his 8os now. But from time to time he gives a 
delightful talk on the wireless. There is no one quite like him; 
after reading him, almost every one else seems coarse. . . . 
Lately I have been reading Elizabeth Bowen's new novel A 
World of Love. It is rather fascinating, though not to every one. 
I reviewed it in two columns of The Times (not the Literary Sup., 
that was by someone else, who liked the book much less than 
I did). By the way, I wonder why you say the critics "don't 
like me ? " I should have said I got quite my fair share of 
praise from them, and in the Lit. Sup. I am fairly often men 
tioned in general literary articles, besides getting nice long 
reviews when I publish a new book. Sometimes, of course, 
1 write an article there myself, and in that I naturally am not 
mentioned! I don't think any of my literary colleagues would 
agree with you that I am unfairly treated; I sometimes think 
I get more than my fair share of appreciation. Though naturally 
not every one likes my books, nor any one else's for that matter. 
Ivy Compton-Burnett is a writer I don't think you would care 
for. I find her entertaining and sometimes brilliant; but 
her novels are certainly odd, and often awkwardly written. 
Is she praised in American papers? I wonder if the fact 
that I haven't for some time myself published a book in 
America, and therefore haven't been in the public eye there, 
has made you think this is also so in England. But it really 
isn't. 

Yes, G. M. Young's Victorian England is excellent. 1 Though 
I can't remember if it is EARLY Victorian England that I am 
thinking of. But possibly he has added on to it and made it 

1 G. M. Young, Victorian England: Portrait of an Age (1936; 2nd ed., 
1953). 

194 



all one book now P 1 Anyhow, he is v.g. A very intelligent, 
civilized mind. Is it a Penguin ? 

Yes, my Shrove Tuesday party was quite fun. About 14 
people, all of whom are my near friends. Goodness, how I 
shall miss my dear, amusing, intelligent, friendly, affectionate 
circle of friends when I have to leave them. Whatever "social 
joys are there", these won't be or most of them won't, for 
some little time, I suppose. The day before my party, I got 
shriven , . . [and] Fr Henderson is ... giving some good Lent 
addresses ... So my religion is being kept together, more or 
less . . . and mostly by daily Mass. ... I am very much interested 
just now in "character", and how each moment and each 
thought builds it up. I have been reading a little book by 
Bishop Austin Pardue, Bp of Pittsburgh, which is partly on 
this subject. He says a lot of sensible things. His little book 
(1952) is called A new and contrite heart? I wonder what you 
would think of it. Some of it is rather too American for me. 
But he has the right angle. Oh yes, the C. of E. is a far better 
business now than a century ago. I don't think that, if I had 
left it in those days, I should ever have returned; perhaps one 
would have, if urgently minded for some Church, have gone 
Roman: but I couldn't have been happy or honest in that for 
long. ... So I should no doubt have remained an unsatisfied 
agnostic. And now, here we are, with all this at hand. Tough 
going at times; but always a visible path, if at times obscured. 
I wish someone would write a long, really long, religious poem, 
that one could read bits of when one felt like it. There is David 
Jones's Anathemata, but it is rather confused and scrappy and too 
obscure. 3 And Eliot's Ash Wednesday, and his Four Quartets; 
but again they are rather twisted and obscure for easy reading, 
say in bed at night. This is my last week of the "Critics," I am 

1 Early Victorian England, edited by G. M. Young (2 vok, 1934), con 
tained an editorial essay which formed the basis for Victorian England. 

2 Austin Pardue, New and Contrite Hearts (New York, 1952; London, 

1953). 

3 David Jones, The Anathemata; Fragments of an Attempted Writing (19 52). 

195 



rather glad to say. My car is still in Peterbro', and I am home 
sick for it. Snow still falls. What a winter! But my love 
always. 



R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
$th April, i955t 

My dear Hamilton, 

I have been a long time answering your interesting letter 
of isth and I4th March, partly because I have been more than 

usual busy. . , . 

We are now arrived in mid-Holy Week, which I am keep 
ing at St Paul's; we are having some good addresses there 
from the Provost of Southwark, 1 also Fr Henderson at mid-day. 
I feel a little mean about the dear Chapel, but there it is. 
Meanwhile, in the intervals of devotions, I am busy with my 
novel ; now that I am off the "Critics" I have much more time 
and attention to give it, and am quite enjoying myself. 

I don't recognise "where error is irreparable repentance 
is useless" 2 but hazard a guess that it is Gibbon, it has his anti 
thetical rhythm, don't you think? G. M. Young would be 
looking at him as a master of history when he wrote that about 
"the greatest of our masters." But I may be quite wrong about 
this; if I come on it, or on any one who knows it, I'll let you 
know. Not a good slogan for this week, I feel, which should 
be spent partly in repenting one's irreparable, as well as 
reparable, errors. 

It has been an odd week otherwise; Churchill resigning in 
the hush created by the cessation of newspapers; 3 but every 

1 Very Rev. H. E. Ashdown. 

2 See G. M. Young's Introduction to Victorian England. 

3 Winston Churchill resigned the Premiership on 5th April, 1955; this 
was during a newspaper strike. 

196 



one knew of it, and crowded Whitehall last night to cheer him, 
and besieged 10 Downing Street when he appeared at the door 
to welcome the Queen to dinner. I heard all about that dinner 
afterwards from Randolph Churchill, who turned up at eleven 
p.m. at the house where I was dining, and gave a very lively 
account. . . . The wireless gives more news than usual, there 
is also the Manchester Guardian (which I can't get), and the 
weeklies for comment. 

I also met Evelyn Waugh last night at dinner ... I don't 
think his writing will ever be what it was in his brilliant and 
unregenerate youth; his conversion did him no literary good, 
however spiritually improving. I hadn't seen him for some 
years, and he accused me of agnosticism; I was able to retort 
that I was now a practising Anglican and went daily to Mass, 
which is, I suspect, more than he does. . . . Of course you are 
right in your diagnosis of the wholesale attitude R.C.S have 
towards their religion; though there will always be some few 
who, like Von Hugel and Acton and Tyrrell, can't believe 
certain doctrines. 

I have been reading Phillips Brooks's sermons and addresses; 
do you know them, I wonder? 1 I like them; though they 
seem to belong to a different and perhaps outdated religious 
world, on the whole. 

Well, here we are nearly at Easter: Good Friday to 
morrow (time having moved on since I began this letter) so it 
is too late to send Easter greetings, which, however, I belatedly 
do. It seems likely to be as chilly and occasionally rainy as 
usual here. I'm not going away anywhere. . . . Evelyn Waugh 
says the next Pope may be a Chinese ! That would be very 
impressive; they look so wise, one could almost accept their 
infallibility when they said " Me speakee ex cathedra 9 . . . . 

A new curate (middle-aged or elderly and an ex-missionary 
from New Guinea) has just arrived at St Paul's to help for a 

1 Phillips Brooks (1835-1893), Bp of Massachusetts, published several 
volumes of sermons. 

197 



time one Canon Benson. When someone introduced us, he 
at once broke out into pleasure about Told by an Idiot and other 
of my novels which it seems are read by New Guinea mis 
sionaries, which surprised and pleased me. To-morrow I shall 
attend the Three Hours at Holy Trinity, Clapham Common, 
where my evangelical Macaulay relatives used to worship 150 
years ago (Zachary, I mean). It seems to have gone Higher now 
than he would have cared for ! Fr Henderson is taking it. 

My love for Easter. 
R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
3 of/i April, 1955 1 (fwst ofSta Caterina da Siena) 

My dear Hamilton, 

I was very sorry to hear in your Easter Sunday and Monday 
letter than you hadn't been well, and still weren't. I have been 
bothering about that a good deal, and hoping you were better, 
and weren't trying to do too much. Perhaps it is better now 
that Holy Week and Easter are over. 

I didn't tell you the glad news that my car is back, greatly 
furbished up and refreshed by the repairers in Peterborough who 
had it in hand for so long; they not only repaired the damage 
done by the thieves who finally flung it into a ditch, but the 
small dents and scrapes on the paint made in the course of 
ordinary wear and tear; so it looks better and goes better than 
for a long time past. So, except for making me bicycle about 
in the arctic winter for two months, the criminals did me a 
service. I must say it is nice to have it again, and get about in 
it so snugly if "get about" can be used for the incredibly 
jammed-up driving we do in central London. Now, with this 
railway strike beginning to-morrow (Sunday) night, even more 
people will bring their cars up to London, and the confusion 
will be worse. I don't use mine much in central London 

198 



except in the quiet hours of morning and evening (com 
paratively quiet, that is) and during week-ends. Of course I 
do use it sometimes, I have to. But in many cases walking is 
quicker. . . . 

Meanwhile I am writing at my novel, which I think is 
rather foolish and frivolous, but I like doing it; it is very 
restful after the toil of Ruins. I am not going far afield this 
summer, so shall have the more time. Only short visits; of 
which one is a week at a Butlin's Camp at Skegness with my 
two little girls (13 and n) at end of August. They look forward 
to this enormously. There [are] any number of juvenile 
amusements; Jane wants to ride all the time, and Mary Anne 
to swim and dive, and of course they will play all kinds of 
games. For my part, I shall swim, and walk about outside the 
camp (though I believe Skegness is frightful). ... I shall drive 
them there through Cambridge, and stop an hour there to 
show them a few colleges and the Backs. They are nice 
intelligent vivacious children. . . . 

We have Billy Graham here again. Just now in Scotland, 
but re-laid into many English churches and (particularly) 
chapels, and apparently doing good to many people. By the 
way, what do you feel about the Church of South India ? Such 
a fuss going on in The Tablet about it ! I must tell you later. 
Nothing now but my love. 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
9th June (Corpus Christi], 1955 f 

My dear Hamilton, 

Turning up a letter of yours posted 5th May, I am reminded, 
to my vexation, that I meant to write to you for your birthday 
on 2nd June, but never did, having been circumvented by a 
number of hindrances in the race set before me, and forgot it 

199 



till too late. I am sorry about that. But I now send my belated 
love for that day; I could wish that you had had a letter from 
me on it to wish you happy returns and a good year, but better 
late than never. In your letter you say you are recovered, or 
nearly, from your illness; I hope that goes on. Thank you for 
your letter and for saying in it that you keep me in mind in 
your prayers, which I like to be, and feel it is a great support 
and encouragement. 

I have been, and am, very busy with my book and other 
things. I am not going abroad this summer, or on any other 
long holiday, as I must work at this book till it is done. I feel 
I could approach it with more vivacity if we could have a little 
summer; but that seems to be a thing of the past in this grey 
and cold land. This is Fr Henderson's last week here; he 
is being bishoped 1 on Saturday, nth June, in St Paul's 
[Cathedral], I have been given a seat in a Canon's closet, 
which I am told gives a good view. I have never seen a con 
secration. It will be an interesting ceremony. "We subscribed 
to give Fr H. a cope, crozier, rochet and two mitres. All these 
episcopal garments are terrific in price, and I think it is a shame 
they aren't officially bestowed; many a poor bishop must 
be ruined by it, and gaiters too, etc. Fr H. takes his last 
Mass in our church to-morrow. How we shall miss him ! 
... I shall probably go oftener than lately to Grosvenor 
Chapel. . . . 

I met a young German this afternoon outside the Church 
of the Annunciation, [Bryanston Street,] who asked me when 
they had their evening Mass there. I said they didn't and asked 
if what he wanted wasn't a Roman church, and of course it 
was. He was surprised that the Annunc. church wasn't Roman ; 
he could see no difference. He truly said that it was not at all 
like St Paul's or the Abbey, which he had lately seen. I had 
some difficulty in explaining that they were all C. of E. I can't 
think why the 1928 P[rayer] B[ook] didn't include a service for 
1 Consecrated Suffragan Bishop of Tewkesbury. 
200 



Corpus Christi, by the way. 1 One could easily compile one, 
out of all the many Eucharistic prayers and Secreta of the Missal. 
Or, of course, just take over the service as in the Missal, which 
is good. I'm not sure, as between the Latin and Engflish] 
versions of Easter 4; both have advantages, don't you think? 
I like "the unruly wills and affections'* rather. 2 I must read 
that Life of Gore. 3 He was a truly venerable man. Did I tell 
you that in May I went to the funeral of my old cousin W. J. 
Conybeare, late Provost of Southwell, who died in his Oxford 
shire retirement ? It was a nice village churchyard funeral and 
family gathering; full of Conybeares, McCormicks, Macaulays. 
Now I must go and get my car out. My love always, 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
26th June, 195 5 f 

My dear Hamilton, 

Your letter posted 7th June did, as you say, cross mine; and 
now I have the one posted 22nd, so I have two good letters in 
hand, which is lovely. I ought not to write to you this week, 
however, as you are in Retreat; but you can lay it by unopened 
till it is over. 

To answer first your point about "very"; surely never 
rightly with a verb, unless the verb (like "tired") has become 
practically an adjective. Of course there are some border cases 
(is "hurt" one of these in its mental, not physical, sense?) but 
I'm sure never with disappointed, pleased, surprised, occupied, 
etc., etc. I mean of course people use it all the time, but not 

1 Two Collects and the Epistle and Gospel for the Feast of Corpus 
Christi are included (inconspicuously) in the 1928 Prayer Book, with those 
for the " Lesser Feasts and Fasts," under the heading " Thanksgiving for the 
Institution of Holy Communion." 

2 See Collect for 4th Sunday after Easter. 

3 Presumably G. L. Prestige's Life of Charles Gore (i935). 

201 



rightly, and it is jarring, don't you think ? I don't think one 
can make hard and fast rules about it; it is a question of what 
sounds wrong to educated ears. One can say "very tired," but 
not 'Very exhausted," I suppose because of "tired" having 
become an adjective. Well, I don't know. I looked up the 
Latin Trinity collect. 1 I think our English one loses force by 
"keep us stedfast in this faith and evermore defend us from all 
adversities" ; I prefer "that by stedfastness in the faith we may 
be defended," and am interested in your idea that it may mean 
the stability of the faith itself, not our firmness in holding it. 
I would translate "ab omnibus adversis" "from all that is against 
us," and you suggest "all that conflicts with the faith" ; any 
how I don't think "from all adversities" is good; after all, 
adversities means only misfortunes, and loses the sense of 
contrary and hostile things which fight against us a sense 
which "adversities" didn't carry even in the i6th cent. 

Yes, I do like to examine these Latin prayers and get their 
meaning. It was one of the many good things that you first 
put me on to. I don't think I read Geoffrey Faber's Oxford 
Apostles when it came out, but I may have and forgotten. 2 
Anyhow, I will get the Penguin. I know G. F.; he is a red- 
faced man of business (publishing) externally, but writes 
excellently, and knows a great deal about the Tractarians, of 
course. 

Since I wrote to you last I had a week-end at Cambridge 
(in fact, last week-end) and dined at the High Table at King's, 3 
which I always like, as I know several of them still, and they 
all (except the quite young ones) knew and loved my dear 
uncle the Vice-Provost. 4 . . . 

I had such a nice letter from a stranger who wrote to me 

1 Collect for Trinity Sunday. 

2 Geof&ey Faber, Oxford Apostles (1933). 

3 " Ladies' Night " is an annual institution at King's College, Cambridge, 
which was started shortly after World War II. Each Fellow of the College 
is allowed to invite a lady to dine at the High Table. 

4 W. H. Macaulay (1853-1936). 

202 



before about Ruins, and has now read The World My Wilderness 
and likes it. I have a few oddments I might send you in a sea 
envelope, and will put this in (do not return). There are also 
two letters out of a somewhat odd and acrimonious corre 
spondence in The Tablet about Anglicans and R.C.s; Peter 
Anson (now R.C. of course) writes enclosing quotations from 
an Anglican Religious friend to him; 1 ... I wondered if I 
should cut out and send you a poem by me in the Times Lit. 
Sup. last number, 2 but remembered that you don't care for my 
poetry, so didn't. 

I read David Cecil's Melbourne 3 with great pleasure, but 
it's less fascinating than The Young Melbourne, which he wrote 
20 years ago. This is a really superb description of the Whig 
society of the late i8th century, and of the personalities in it. 
The new volume hasn't the same charm, I think; perhaps its 
period hasn't. I didn't feel, though, that he was unjustifiably 
novelistic about Melbourne. But I don't think I really felt this 
about his Stricken Deer* either, tho' I dare say your grand 
fathers, who knew Cowper (or anyhow knew all about him 
from others), would think so. I have just read a very interesting 
pseudo-memoirs of the Emperor Hadrian; 5 fascinating in its 
knowledge of the 2nd century Roman Empire, as well as a 
brilliant reconstruction of Hadrian himself. I think you 
would be interested in this. It is translated from the 
French. . . . 

By the way, Fr Derry is such a nice, human, humorous 
person. 6 I like him better and better. He came in here for 

1 See The Tablet, 1 8th June, 195 5- 

2 " Dirge for Trebizond," see The Times Literary Supplement, 24th June, 

1955* 

3 Lord M. (1954). 4 The Stricken Deer; or the Life of Cowper (1929)- 

5 Marguerite Yourcenar, Memoirs of Hadrian (trans. Grace Frick, 1955)- 

6 Rev. W. R. Derry, Curate-in-charge of Grosvenor Chapel and 
Warden of Liddon House (an Anglican centre for graduates and young 
professional men and women, founded in Kensington in 1907 and later 
attached to Grosvenor Chapel). 

203 



sherry the other day, alone, and we had an interesting talk 
about the work he is doing for young people at Liddon House 
discussions, debates, addresses, etc. I have promised to speak 
to them. My love, and thank you for everything. You do 
uphold me so much. 

Yours, 
R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
2jthjune, 1955 

My dear Hamilton, 

Here are the oddments I said I would send you in a sea 
letter. I have just stuck up the air letter. It is Sunday evening, 
and I am staying in, writing letters and now going to get on 
with my novel. It has been a really lovely summer day most 
unusual this year and it seems [a] waste not to be out and 
about in it, but I can't spare the time. And I won't add to this, 
except to send my love again. I hope you are having a good 
Retreat. . , . 

My love always, 
R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W. I 
20th August, 195 5 1 

My dear Hamilton, 

Your letter of 1 5th Aug. filled me with shame that I have 
omitted to answer the one of 4th July, which has been lying 
on my writing-table ever since I got it, waiting reply. Again 
and again I had it in mind to write, but was always prevented. 
I have been working very hard on my book while at home, 
and also have done a certain amount of going away, though 

204 



much less so than usual in the summer; that is, I haven't been 
abroad, or on any long visit anywhere. On the 27th till 3rd 
Sept. I go to Butlin's camp at Skegness with my two little girls, 
and am rather looking forward to it, though it does sound most 
odd! I will tell you more about it after I have been there. I 
know we are woken each morning by a reveille and a singing 
of " Lads and Lasses, get up to play", or something similar, 
then every one queues up for lavatories, etc., labelled " Lads" 
or " Lasses" (I mean the lavatories are labelled, not the lads and 
lasses) ; but if we like we can plunge into the swimming-pool 
instead, if weather permits. Then I suppose breakfast, and at 
8.30 there seems to be "church", whatever that may mean; if 
it is Mass, after breakfast would be an odd time for it, one 
would think; but I believe all these camps have a church and 
a parson attached; I dare say it is a nice paid holiday for the 
parson, and really quite a good opening for him to get into 
touch with the campers. Then follows the day, with not a dull 
(or quiet) moment, what with bathing, games, physical 
exercises, riding for those who like it (as my younger charge 
does), as well as cinemas, television, dancing, concerts, etc. 
Perhaps there may be an Old Folks' Corner, where I shall sit 
sometimes and scribble away at my novel and take notes of 
the camp life, which might turn into an article perhaps. Well, 
I think a week will be quite enough, but I shall enjoy it, and 
the children will love it. 

Your letter of July 4 was very interesting. What you say 
about the variety of practices allowed in the C. of E., as 
compared with the R.C. [Church], brings to my mind a 
conversation I had the other day with ... [a Roman Catholic 
friend of mine]. She (who was till 25 years ago a devout 
Anglo-Catholic) says that her "cradle Catholic" friends tell 
her often that they are completely puzzled by the C. of E., 
which they gather has quite different practices and even 
beliefs, in different churches; and quite different in many 
cases from their practices of 60 or 70 years ago. They think this 

205 



extraordinary, and she can't explain it to them, how it happens, 
well tho' she understands it herself. I personally think it all to 
the good, as giving something for every one, however different 
their minds, backgrounds, and religious temperaments. She 
and I were comparing our own differences in belief which are 
very considerable. Then we got on to discussing the question 
of R.C. "fundamentalism" about the Bible. They do seem 
committed to this in theory, as much as the Evangelical 
Grahamites are, but I think the more scholarly and educated 
ones are trying to extricate themselves without loss of face 
(I'm so glad we Anglicans don't mind losing "face" about such 
things) from the impossible position defined in Providentissimus 
Deus 1 and Lamentabili? and shown by their expulsion of their 
Modernist scholars during the early years of this century. 3 This 
question of fundamentalism is being discussed just now in the 
Times correspondence, apropos of Billy Graham's mission 
to Cambridge next term, which is got up by C.I.C.C.U. 4 and 
rather deplored by the University scholars, as "stifling the 
mind" and alienating many young men and women from 
religion by presenting absurdities to them. Of course 
C.I.C.C.U. and O.I.C.C.U., in the two universities, have 
always been rather of that way of thinking. Did O.I.C.C.U. 
flourish when you were up ? 

Another discussion (this time in The Tablet] has been raging 
about the R.C. pronunciation of " Mass," and the way many 
of them say " Mahss," and why. I think myself it is of Irish 
derivation; but some R.C. critics complain that it is used 
sometimes [as] a snob gesture by converts. I find it useful, as 
I know by that, and by the dropping of " Roman " from 

1 A Papal Encyclical issued in 1893, asserting that the whole of Scripture 
was written "at the dictation of the Holy Ghost." 

2 A Papal decree issued in 1907 condemning propositions derived from 
contemporary Modernist teaching. 

3 Clergy who had been identified with Modernism were mostly ex 
communicated. 

4 The Cambridge Inter-Collegiate Christian Union. 

206 



" Roman Catholic," when my acquaintances have suffered 
conversion. Besides, I rather like these distinctions. 

Later. Shocked by news at I o'clock of that horrid "Diane" 1 ( ?) 
who, it seems, has swept the coast from Virginia to Mass. 
But how far up Mass. ? I wish I knew. Perhaps we shall hear 
more later. I do hope not near Cambridge, and that the whole 
thing wasn't terribly disturbing and distressing for you. 

To change the subject, did you ever read Eleanor, a novel 
(1906, I think) by Mrs Humphry Ward? I never did till the 
other day, and I must say I found it unexpectedly interesting. 
Partly about Italy, the conflict bet[ween] the old Papal Italy and 
the post-iSyo Italy, and die views on this taken by the English 
man who is the chief character and by his Italian acquaintances, 
all very well done. There is also the human story, about 
Eleanor, who loved this man and had to fight her jealousy and 
misery because he fell in love with a young American girl; all 
her conflict and struggle and final moral victory (Eleanor's, I 
mean) is very well described; so is the old excommunicated 
priest-scholar who helped her. I found it all very vivid and 
good, and even beautiful, and wish you could get hold of it. 
I must see if I can find a copy in some second-hand bookshop. 
I think better of Mrs H. W. than I did before. 

We are having some more hot weather; I adore it. I bathed 
in the Serp. this morning after St Paul's Mass, and it was most 
lovely. I remember beginning this practice, and writing to you 
of it, in June 'si. 2 This is the first hot summer since then (or 
anyhow when I was in England). I am most anxious to know 
about the exploits of "Diane," and hope the BBC will be more 
explicit in its accounts later to-day. I keep thinking about you 
and her ! Much love and anxious thoughts. 

Rose. 

1 A hurricane. 

2 See Letters to a Friend, p. 134. 

207 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
2$th September, 195 5 f 

My dear Hamilton, 

1 meant to write before, in answer to yours of 30 Aug. 
but have been first at Butlin's (!)... and then in Worcs. for a 
wedding, and in the spaces in between feverishly writing away 
at the novel (not nearly finished yet, alas). 

That devil " Diane/' to have flooded your basement and 
destroyed so much valuable literature, vestments (or were these 
able to be dried?), and other things; and, worse, to have 
caused you all that shock and distress. I have been thinking of 
you with anxiety. The only consolation is that it could have 
been worse, as it was in those other places, that were flooded 
and blown to pieces with so much loss of property and lives; 
it was terrible. I am thankful that " Edith " was comparatively 
harmless in your parts. And since then there have been others 
of the dreadful sisterhood; where did " lone " pass your 
shores, and what of "Janet " ? Alistair Cooke (who gives us a 
weekly Letter from America on the BBC) says the reason why 
we used not to hear so much about these creatures is that 
American news has grown more important since America's 
growth in world power; but this seems to me to be an im 
probable reason. Surely they are worse ? 

And now Eisenhower seems in danger. 1 I hope he won't 
die; it would be sad, I think. 

Butlin's was quite fun ; rather like a visit to the moon, quite 
out of this world. Absurd, of course, for an adult, but having 
the two children made it fun; they loved every minute of it. 
One unexpected thing was the little camp church, Anglican, 
with a chaplain of great geniality to one and all; Mass every 
day at 7.30 and 8.30, to which I went (at 8.30), and it was very 
well attended. A radio voice announced each morning at 7.29, 

1 President Eisenhower had suffered a heart attack on 24th September, 
1955- 

208 



" In one minute there will be a celebration of Holy Com 
munion in the camp church." Disgusted and sleepy voice from 
the chalet on my left, " What an entertainment ! " We all slept 
in nice little chalets in a row, or rather in many rows, for there 
were about 500 campers at a time. We had swimming pools 
(but I bathed in the sea myself) and every kind of game and 
diversion, and my younger charge, who is pony-mad, rode 
every day and helped to groom the horses. There was a 
repertory company, which acted exciting dramas, and tele 
vision, which I saw for the first time and didn't think much of. 
Why is it so popular ? One programme, which showed a panel 
of 4 famous people in a game of guessing " Who wrote that ? " 
to my surprise quoted something from me (but I don't know 
where I said it) something about "it is to the eccentrics that 
the world owes most of its knowledge"; no one guessed me; 
when they were told, they had to discuss its truth or otherwise, 
and on the whole agreed with me. My two children were 
delighted by this. ... By the way, on the way back (in the car) 
from Skegness, we turned aside to look at Yaxley church and 
village (Hunts). I wondered if that was your Yaxley, or is 
yours the one in Suffolk ?* It was a beautiful old church. There 
was no list of vicars, so I couldn't look for "Johnson." But I 
expect yours is Suffolk. However, I plucked a little flower from 
the graveyard and thought of you. . . . 

I am still being bombarded with little Catholic Truth 
pamphlets, and long letters telling how I have no Mass, no 
sacraments, no priests. How rude they are! Imagine if I 
started writing in that vein to, say, Methodists. They are so 
stuck up and arrogant. Of course nothing could be so true as 

they think their Church is I answered one of these priests 

who write to me that I thought Christians should tolerate one 
another's religions, and I was glad they had sacraments and 
thought they ought to be glad that I thought I had. The 

1 R. M. has confused Yaxley with Yaxham in Norfolk, where the 
Johnsons had a family living. 

209 



chaplain at Butlin's welcomed everyone to Communion 
Church, Chapel, or whatever though he was definitely 
Anglo-Catholic in his rites. That's the Christian spirit, surely. 
Imagine what our Lord would have said. My love always and 
I hope you are well and not bothered by hurricanes. 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
i&th November, 195 5 f 

My dear Hamilton, 

Your letter begun loth Nov. came to-day, just when I had 
it in mind to answer, much too late, the one of ist Oct. That 
one has been lying by me to be answered for some time and 
I even took it away with me to Pleshey 1 last week when I went 
there for Fr Henderson's very good Retreat, 2 but I didn't get 
time there for letters actually. In the free time, which was all 
the afternoon from lunch to tea, I walked out and saw the 
country, and picked berries in the lanes and fields. Do you 
know Pleshey Retreat House, I wonder ? You may even have 
taken retreats there, I dare say. I was never there before. 
Evelyn Underbill used to take retreats there, I think. It is a 
nice place; I like its atmosphere. And the addresses couldn't 
have been better. . . . But what I was saying was that I really 
was about to write to you when your letter came to-day. Only 
extreme busy-ness has kept me from it, as from much else. 
Yes, I suppose we do have to write rather less often than once; 
this doesn't mean that I value your letters, or like to write 
myself, any less, but merely that so much else obstructs and 
takes one's time. I have kept all your letters from the begin 
ning; and goodness, what I owe to them! No one can ever 
have had such letters. Your patience with me, your making 

1 The House of Retreat at Pleshey, near Chelmsford. 

2 He was then Bp of Tewkesbury. 

210 



clear to me so much that was obscure or that I had never 
thought of, your bringing me into touch with the Church, with 
the sacraments, with the whole marvel of reconciliation and the 
newness of this new life in which I have tried to live, however 
faultily, for nearly 5 years now well, I don't need to tell you 
all this, for you know it. It has been the most wonderful 
ministry of letters that ever was. And so much else, in the way 
of interest you [have] provided literary, historical, auto 
biographical, etc. What I want is that both of us should write 
whenever we feel like it, and I hope we often shall. I should 
miss it terribly if it stopped. One great thing you introduced 
me to and made me familiar with was the Roman missal and 
its prayers; so many of these have got into my private prayer- 
book and are part of my daily prayers at Mass. . . . 

[A friend of mine] came to tea to-day, to meet E. M. 
Forster, who has always been a great hero of his. E. M. F. was 
telling us about Billy Graham's recent mission at Cambridge, 
which of course is little to his liking, tho' when he met him 
he thought him a nice, simple, friendly person, not "civilised," 
but "a good type". B. G.'s success is largely, of course, among 
[members of] C.I.C.C.U., who are a very strong party in the 
University. E. M. F. thinks B. G. much nicer and more 
tolerant than they are. With his agnostic views, he of course 
laments the strong religious trend just now in Cambridge. . , . 

Do you know Newman's Via Medial I am reading the 
3rd edition, 1 which is in one way rather sad; published, I think, 
40 years after the first, and long after his conversion, and an 
notated from his present Roman standpoint; i.e. every anti- 
Roman remark retracted and deplored; even his criticism of 
the Inquisition's treatment of Galileo and the new Copernican 
theories of the planetary movements is taken back; he says in 
a note that of course such new theories, even tho' true, could 
not be safely allowed, as they might confuse people's faith, and 

1 J. H. Newman, The Via Media of the Anglican Church (srd ed., 2 vok, 
1877). 

211 



the Church was right to forbid them; he adds " I neither know, 
nor desire to know, by what methods this was done "which 
is very insincere, as he knew quite well of course that people 
who affirmed them were burnt alive. 1 The whole re-issue of 
this book is pathetic and sad. But I like a lot of the book itself. 
I never got through the Glastonbury Romance* but have always 
thought I sometimes would, when I have more time. I am 
just now reading in bed an account by Winifred Peck (born 
Knox) of her childhood with her brothers and father; 3 the 4 
boys were all brilliant: Ronnie (at 4 years old composing 
remarkable limericks, etc.), E. V., the eldest [and] the wit and 
leader of the family, then Dillwyn, the King's classical scholar, 
and Wilfred, the Anglo-Catholic; strange progeny of the 
Protestant Ulster Bishop. It is a very pleasant account of a 
childhood in the 8os and 905. I have just got from Bp David 
Mathew his new book on Charles I and Scotland; 4 very 
scholarly and detailed, and dedicated to me, "in memory of a 
long friendship," which is nice. No room now for more, I see. 
I am still struggling to finish the novel; shortage of time is 
acute, and will wreck my life and all my undertakings. I 
should like to have time for geology and cosmology perhaps 
one day I shall. Why do we pray that "they [the faithful 
departed] may have rest? " Rest is not what we shall want, 
surely, but more scope for work and new knowledge. 

Much love always. 
R.M. 



1 Belief in the Heliocentric system was not al<3ne regarded as a heresy to 
warrant burning. 

2 J. C. Powys, A Glastonlury Romance (1933). 

3 Winifred Peck, Home for the Holidays (1955). 

4 David Mathew, Scotland under Charles I (1955). 



212 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.I 
ijth December, 1955! 

My dear Hamilton, 

I am writing to-day and posting to-morrow in the hopes 
of reaching you by Xmas, but I know this [is] chancey ; I meant 
to write earlier, but have been laid up with prolonged flue, 
and for the last 10 days bronchitis, which is a bore. I am now 
getting about again, but not very energetically. . . 

This letter is really to thank you for yours of ist Dec., and 
to wish you a happy Xmas. I loved your letter. It reminded 
me of all the things I have had from you through this rich 5 
years. Without your guidance I should not have known all 
those missal prayers, and found all those riches in them as you 
say, progressively, and as mood and occasion suggest. I was 
thinking how thin and dull and inadequate it would be to have 
had instead an evangelical re-conversion; not, I think, that this 
would ever have been possible for me, much as I admire our 
evangelical ancestors. But the 'material they have to feed on, 
their literary entourage, is so comparatively unsatisfying except 
of course for the Bible. Not that they couldn't have access to 
everything, but they don't seem to much. But how good 
many of them used to be ! And how lucky we have so much 
more that is attractive and valuable to our imaginations. I am 
interested in your cosmological and geological readings and 
thoughts. It is all so extraordinary, it makes me dizzy: good 
ness yes, what a drop-scene behind our animated, just beginning 
human lives, to be played out against all that gaseous tre~ 
mendousness, of which our passions and aspirations are such 
odd and frail reflections. (Though this is not really putting it 
well, because we are of a higher order. Who would have 
thought that conscience would evolve from all that ?) Are you 
interested in the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls, and have 
you seen Edmund Wilson's book about them? 1 I don't see, 
1 The Scrolls from the Dead Sea (1955)- 



do you, how Christ can have been an Essene; after all, his life 
was known to the Evangelists, and they must have mentioned 
it. I am being given Knox's complete Bible for Xmas, which 
I shall like to have, though it is a pity it should be based on such 
a comparatively poor text as the Vulgate. But he had the 
Greek and Hebrew in his mind, of course. 1 I already have the 
N[ew] Tjestament]. The next thing will be the great translation 
now being worked on here, but we shall have to wait some 
years for that. 2 I wish we would revise our Gospels for the 
Day again. I do think it so stupid to have that "begat" Gospel 
they read on Dec. 12 at Mass. A bad day for it, too, as it is in 
honour of the B.V.M. and why must we hear at tremendous 
length of Joseph's descent from David ? 3 Then I hate all those 
Gospels about the creatures with wings and eyes. I would 
much rather have instead some more Wisdom or Ecclesiasticus. 
I really do hate those fantastic creatures pictured in the heavens 
in Rev[elation] and in the O[ld] Tfestament], they make me 
feel quite ill, and to bring God into them seems so irreverent. 
My mother used to tell us that poor St John was obviously 
feeling ill and delirious. I have been reading On the Gods and 
the World, by the Roman 4th C. pagan Sallustius; something 
of a Neoplatonist, and very attractive. 4 " When we are good, 
we are joined to the gods by our likeness to them: when bad, 
we are separated from them by our unlikeness. When we live 
according to virtue, we cling to the gods, and when we become 
evil we make the gods our enemies, not because they are 
angered against us, but because our sins prevent the light of the 
gods from shining upon us, and put us into communion with 
spirits of punishment. ... To say that God turns away from 

1 R. A. Knox's Bible (1955) is stated, in the sub-title, to be "a translation 
from the Latin Vulgate in the Light of the Hebrew and Greek originals/' 

2 The New English Bible (1961). 

3 R. M. probably means the Gospel for yth December (not I2th), the 
Vigil of the Conception of the B.V.M., which is Matt. i. 1-16. 

4 See Gilbert Murray's translation of the treatise of Sallustius "On the 
Gods and the World " in his Five Stages of Greek Religion (1925). 

214 



evil men is like saying that the sun hides himself from the 
blind." Very like William Law, in parts. What he lacks, of 
course, is redemption, the seeking of man by God. But it is 
always so good to find the same golden divine thread running 
back and back through the ages; Christian, pagan, Hebrew, 
all part of the long gradual revelation, of which one hopes for 
and expects so much more as time goes on. 

Someone has sent me for Xmas a nice little selection from 
i yth cent, sermons, made by G. Lacey May 1 , with a little preface 
which is unfair to the puritans, though you know how little I 
like them ! But he sees no good in any of their preaching, etc. 
Whereas Baxter, 2 Samuel Rutherford, 3 Chillingworth (during 
his puritan phase) 4 had so much that was good to say. He is 
too much of a Laudian, naturally. Without all these facets of 
truth, Christianity would be a less rich complex of ideas than 
it is. 

I lunched yesterday with the brothers Mathew both very 
interesting. I like David's book very much, and have just been 
including it in a 3oo-word contribution to the Sunday Times 
" Books of the Year." I did six books 3 history, 2 autobio 
graphy, one Good Behaviour, Harold Nicolson's pleasant study 
of civilizations. 

Fr Harris 5 laments that he can't find more servers. What 
is the reason that women mayn't serve at Mass ? If they could, 
he would have an abundance of willing helpers. It seems silly; 
women are neater-handed, and would actually serve better than 
inexperienced young men, surely. But there is a theory that 
they may not handle the vessels. I wonder why. I suppose it 
is the oriental basis of Christianity; and one feels that St Paul 
would not have liked the idea at all! On the other hand, one 

1 Wings of an Eagle: An Anthology of Caroline Preachers, edited by G. 
Lacey May (1955). 

2 Richard Baxter (1615-1691), Puritan divine. 

3 Samuel Rutherford (c. 1600-1661), Scottish Presbyterian divine. 

4 See above p. i88w. 

5 Rev. D. B. Harris, Vicar of St Paul's, Krnghtsbridge, 

215 



can imagine Our Lord saying that such distinctions were 
nonsense, and that [there] were neither male nor female in such 
matters. What a pity He didn't. But obviously there was no 
chance, and the orientalists had it their own way. 

Well, my love for Xmas, and may you be well through 
it. I hope I shall be by the day, and fit for midnight Mass and 
Romford next day. This is my sixth Xmas letter to you. 
Thank you again for those 5 years. 

Your affectionate 
R.M. 



216 



1956 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
6th February, I956f 

My dear Hamilton, 

Now I have two good letters from you to answer, that of 
3 ist Dec. written in answer to my Xmas one, and of 2ist Jan. 
which came to-day, a pleasing sight on my mat as I returned 
from Mass at St Paul's. Yes, thank you, I am now quite 
recovered from both pre-Xmas flue and post-Xmas bronchitis, 
which detained me for a little while. I only now have the 
slightest of coughs remaining, and am very vigorous in 
pleasures and chores. Not even badly affected by our 5 days 
of arctic weather which it seems was the coldest since 1895 and 
which froze everyone's pipes and cars; but fortunately here 
such visitations are usually short, and a blessed thaw arrived 
last Saturday to melt us again. I do hope you didn't suffer 
badly from it, but of course in your parts it is common form 
each winter. Though I don't know that that makes it much 
more bearable to the poor Anglican priests with licences to 
practise their professions in a cold land. 

Among what you describe as the "unordinary, time-taking 
things" that occupied me lately was the finishing and despatch 
ing of my novel; Collins now have it, and are retyping it. 
Mark Bonham Carter, the director there who is my friend 
likes it, I am glad to say. He read the beginning of it to his 
mother (Lady Violet B. C.) and he said it made her laugh, also 
him; he says he was also moved, so that is a good combination, 
I suppose laughter and being moved, I mean. I think some 
people won't care about it much. I do hope you will ! Its name 
is The Towers of Trebizond, and Trebizond stands for not 
merely the actual city (tho' this comes in, and a lovely place it 
is) but for the ideal and romantic and nostalgic vision of the 
Church which haunts the person who narrates the story. I 
won't tell you more about it now, but shall send it you when 
it comes, which probably won't be till September, as it takes 

219 



six months to print a book now, and July and August aren't 
good months. I am now catching up on arrears of articles, etc., 
and letters and much else, before starting to think about 
another novel; I think I shall write only novels in future, it 
seems less trouble, and if one stays out of novels for some years 
it is bad for one's sales. Yes, I saw that review of Books for 
Schools, I don't know who Norman Culpan is, or what his 
qualifications; I suppose he didn't think my novels suitable for 
the young, or perhaps just didn't think of them, owing to my 
not having written many lately. 1 Perhaps it's time I got on 
the fiction map again ! As a matter of fact They Were Defeated 
used to [be] (perhaps is) recommended to Eng. Lit. students at 
Cambridge, I believe. I am reading some interesting books: 
James MacKinnon's Historic Jesus* (he was Regius Professor of 
Ecclesiastical] Hist[ory] at Edinburgh). It is v. learned, and 
interests me so far. Also I read a book by an Italian professor 
(trans.) about the "Cult of the Virgin Mary," 3 tracing 
its gradual growth after the first few centuries, its sources 
(largely apocryphal gospels, of course), the resistance to it from 
various early Fathers, its extraordinary claims, based on no 
Gospel evidence of any kind, the reception by the different 
doctors of the Church of the Immac[ulate] Conception and 
Assumption Aquinas very much against the I.C., also, I think, 
St Bernard. The Roman doctrine of the evolution of revealed 
truth is very dangerous; it means they can dispense with 
evidence and simply declare revelation to the Church whenever 
they choose. It is feared (by conservative R.C.s) that the next 
thing will be the declaration of Mary as sole mediatrix. If it is, 
they will have either to take it, or to leave the Church. I am 
very sorry for them. The Pope gets very unreliable. Gerard 

1 Norman Culpan (Lecturer and Librarian, County of Stafford Training 
College), in his booklet Modern Adult Fiction for School and College Libraries 
(School Library Assoc., 1955) does not mention any novels by R. M. 

2 James MacKinnon, The Historic Jesus (1931). 

3 Giovanni Miegge, The Virgin Mary: The Roman Catholic Marian 
Doctrine (trans. W. Smith, 1955). 

220 



Irvine was saying that two things hinder Anglicans going to 
Rome more than anything else these fantastic pronounce 
ments, made or feared, and the intolerant manners of R.C.s 
towards Anglicans, refusal to pray with us, etc. I certainly 
could never myself join a Church which wouldn't pray with 
other Christians. 

I have been reading the Liturgy of South India, and a 
commentary on it, also an article about it by a French R..C. in 
Theology* I might send you this number of Theology; I think 
it would interest you. The liturgy itself seems very good. 
Another thing I will send you is Latin in Church, which I got 
to send you before, but see it is still lying about. 2 I will try and 
post it in the next day or two. . . . 

Fr Harris is the most cheerful and affable and sociable of 
people; he holds salons in the porch on Sunday evenings after 
church; getting to know people. ... He seems to have 
arranged a busy Lent programme for us, too. To-morrow he 
is coming to lunch with me at my Club to meet a few friends 
of mine who are all anxious to induce the Church BBC 
Advisory Committee (headed by Cantuar) 3 to allow the tele 
vision of High Anglican Masses in some of the times allotted 
to the C. of E. At present the R.C.s always put on a High 
Mass during their times, and the effect is enormous; many 
seem to be converted outright to Rome, having never seen 
anything like these services before. So John Betjeman and I 
think our Church too should be in on it, and we are persuading 
Sir G[eorge] Barnes, the Television head at present, and a very 

able King's man, to work for this Fr Harris is also coming, 

as I am hoping St Paul's may be one of the churches chosen, if 
we succeed. It has a very beautiful Mass and choir, and I don't 
see that it wouldn't convert as many people as Downside Mass 

1 Louis Bouyer, "A Roman Catholic View of the Church of South 
India," Theology, January 1956. 

2 F. Brittain, Latin in Church (1934; 2nd ed., 1955)- 

3 The Chairman of the BBC's Central Religious Adv. Com. was then 
the Bp of Bristol (Rt. Rev. F. A. Cockin) not Archbishop Fisher. 

221 



does ; it has what is to the large majority the advantage of being 
in a language they understand. Televiewers in this country are 
not on the whole an intellectual type. None of my friends have 
a set, but nearly all my sister's patients at Romford do, also 
my nice window-cleaner, in fact nearly everyone. Much love. 
I see there is no room for anything else ! But what a lucky 
chance that you turned into that bookshop in 1950 and got 
my publisher's address ! 

Your affectionate 
R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
jth May, 1956 j 

My dear Hamilton, 

Your letter of ist May came to-day, and I am shocked to 
learn that my last was as long ago as 6th Feb. I have [been] 
meaning to write, and have had yours of 5th March lying 
among my letters waiting to be answered. But, being much 
taken up with jobs, writing and others, I suppose I didn't answer 
it. And now I have another. I did indeed mean to write long 
ago, and don't know how it happened that I didn't. . * . Have 
you had Fr Huddleston's Naught for Your Comfort'? I know he 
was touring America speaking about South Africa, so no 
doubt his book has also done well there. He is a delightful 
person; I have heard him more than once, and did so to-day 
at the Caxton Hall. He is certainly rousing the nation's 
conscience about South Africa, and is also much annoying the 
S.A. government. To-day the Community [of the Resurrec 
tion's] feast began with a High Mass at the Annunciation church, 
[Bryanston Street,] to which I went, invited by my C.R. 
cousin, 1 who is home on leave from South Africa, and knows 
Fr Huddleston well. He introduced me to him after Mass. 
1 R.ev. C. Reginald Smith, C.R. 
222 



Then this evening there was this meeting. It is a tragic 
situation; people seem to think the C.R. missionaries will be 
all expelled from South Africa within a year or two. At 
present, the [ir] Johannesburg schools being all closed (I think), 
they are fighting to keep their Rhodesian ones going, and try 
ing to raise enough money for this. 

Don't think I am ill when I don't write. If I was dead, my 
sister would write and tell you; I have asked her to. But I 
shan't be dead! I have not had flu since March, and have 
been well and active, missing few morning Masses. I alternate 
for these between G. Chapel and St Paul's. ... I like to know 
that you remember me at Mass; I feel I need it in these days. 

I shall get Wilfred Knox's book from the library. 1 I used 
to see Him sometimes at Cambridge, when he ran the Oratory 
(at least I think he was [Warden then]). He was a great 
influence among undergraduates. 2 I knew all the Knoxes: 
E. V., who is charming always, Wilfred, Dillwyn, of King's, 
who died long ago, and Ronald. Over 30 years ago, when 
Wilfred wrote that book, I suppose "the Catholic movement 
in the Church" was much less advanced than now. I see people 
in the C[hurch] Times are complaining that there are fewer 
confessions now, which surprises me rather. 3 I want to read 
W. Ward's Life of Newman. 4 " The fact is there are so many 
books I want to read and can't get time to; but I will make a 
note of that one to ask for at the London Library next time 
I am in. I am reviewing for the Times Literary Supplement a 
little book called The Saints and Ourselves (series 2). 5 Not much 

1 The Catholic Movement in the Church of England (1923). 

2 Wilfred Knox (1887-1950) came to Cambridge in 1924 as Warden of 
die Oratory of the Good Shepherd, a society of prayer. In 1941 he became 
Chaplain of Pembroke College. 

3 See correspondence in the Church Times, " Fewer Penitents ? " (isth 
April 4th May, 1956). 

4 Wilfrid Ward, The Life of John Henry Newman (2 vok, 1912). 

5 Saints and Ourselves: Personal Studies, edited by P. Caraman (2nd series, 
1955)- 

223 



in it; and I find these little studies of saints rather boring on 
the whole. They ought to have mor^ faults. The Bible saints 
had plenty, and their historians don't try to smooth them over. 
The Apostles were all full of faults. But these medieval saints 
wear an air of pious perfection which makes them unreal. One 
always is told of their remarkable and invariable humility, till 
one longs for some of them to be stuck up for a change, or 
grasping and impertinent like John and James trying to grab 
the best seats in heaven, which was so natural, or cross and 
crotchety and impatient like St Paul, or disagreeable and 
bullying like St Jerome with his matrons, virgins and widows. 
A touch of original sin would certainly help to make these later 
saints more real. 

I expect the proofs of my novel in a day or two; it is to 
come out in September. Meanwhile I am reading lots of books 
about the Greek islands, as I am probably going to some of 
them in August, together with Archbp and Fr Gervase 
Mathew, O.P., Sir Maurice Bowra, the Bp of Exeter, 1 etc. But 
if things get worse with the Greeks over Cyprus, I shan't go. 

I shall be writing again about 25th May, so till then, my 
love. Do remain well, strong, young, and read a lot of 
interesting books to tell me about. 

Your affectionate 
R.M. 



20, Hindc House, Hinde St., W.i 
[Postmark: 26 May, 1956] | 

My dear Hamilton, 

This is the letter I said in my last that I meant shortly to 

write, in time for 2nd June, that auspicious day. Isn't it, besides 

your birthday (don't tell me which birthday, I don't want to 

know how the people I love are getting on, as I hope they will 

1 Rt. Rev. R. C. Mortimer. 

224 



live for ever here; anyhow, I know you, unlike some of my 
friends, such as dear Gilbert Murray, and Max Beerbohm who 
died the other day, are [one of the] happy and young septua 
genarians, which to-day is nothing) this sentence has now got 
a little lost, but what I was saying was, isn't it also the day you 
became a S.S.JJEL Father? 1 If so you have been one for well 
over half a century, I know. Anyhow, this is a birthday letter, 
to send my love and greetings. I keep on looking for Eleanor, 
that book of Mrs H. Ward's that I like, but it hasn't yet been 
unearthed by any bookshop. I think perhaps I'll send you a 
novel I have by L. P. Hartley, which I think his best, a rather 
moving story about the involvement of a boy in the affairs of 
adults. 2 

I have just finished doing the proofs of my own novel. . . . 
Later (when it conies out in Sept.) I shall want to know what 
[you] . . . think of it. Bits of it you may take exception to, as 
too critical of the Church; but you will see that the real point 
of the story is a great nostalgia for the Church, on the part of 
the central character, who is lapsed from it. They go to Turkey 
on an Anglican mission to Turks. This all sounds like a rather 
odd book, I fear, and perhaps it is. It has a camel in it, also 
an ape. 

I don't think Becket (I learn that it was his doing) ought 
to have hurried us on so quickly from Whitsun to Trinity, do 
you? 3 Only a week to remember the Holy Spirit, then we 
start brooding over the Trinity for some 26 weeks, which is 
absurdly monotonous and unimaginative. I could have done 
with at least six weeks of Whitsun. About the Trinity, I 
haven't much to think, actually. However, Corpus Christi 
comes on Thursday, and about that one would gladly think for 
months, not just for one day. Some of us from St Paul's are 

1 Father Johnson was professed on 2nd June, 1909. 

2 L. P. Hartley, The Go-Between (1955). 

3 The observance of the Sunday following Pentecost as a Feast in honour 
of the Holy Trinity became popular in England in the Middle Ages, partly 
because St Thomas Becket had been consecrated Bishop on that day. 

225 



going down to Nashdom (Burnham) on C.C., to see (or take 
part in) the Nashdom monks' 1 procession through the Beeches. 
I hope it will be warmer than to-day ! I always remember our 
Varazze C.C. procession through the town, from one church 
to another, people throwing down roses from their windows 
all the way, the blue sea rustling on one side of the town, the 
hills climbing back with their pines and olive terraces 011 the 
other ; and in between the little town with all its bells ringing 
and the harsh singing of the procession as it wound along 
bearing its crucifix and banners and incense. It is a lovely 
memory to have. The beeches round Burnham won't be so 
good. 

Now I must write to an aged schoolmistress of mine 2 who 
writes to me that she is very nearly blind now and can scarcely 
read print, but relies on some library where they read aloud; 
I don't know if she also reads Braille. Thank goodness for the 
wireless, on which she relies for News and many other things. 
She used to be a grand person, whom I adored when I was a 
little High School girl and wrote essays for her. 

Did I mention in my last how much I liked Fr Waggett's 
Heart of Jesus (Holy Week addresses of 1904) ? 3 I wish I could 
get hold of another copy: my sister and I have only one 
between us. This must stop: again, my love. . . . 

By the way, why does the Lower House of Convocation 
reject women's lay ministry ? It seems so stupid. 



1 Anglican Benedictine monks of the community at Nashdom Abbey, 
near Burnham, Bucks. 

2 Bertha L. Browne, who taught History at Oxford High School, 1892- 
1897. 

3 P. N. Waggett, The Heart of Jesus (1902). 

226 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
i&th August, 1956 f 

My dear Hamilton, 

Thank you so much for your letter posted on I3th. It is 
ages since either of us wrote, I know. I too have thought of 
it many times, like you, after I had sent you The Go-Between, 
but I was frightfully busy, finishing off my proofs, catching up 
on arrears of reviews, etc., and the time hurried by. I do hope 
you won't ever feel it on your mind that you ought to write; 
I know you are always there, and that I am too, and so securely 
that letters don't matter much after all, though it is nice to 
exchange news sometimes. I was glad to get yours. Mine isn't 
very sensational. My book is coming out on Sept. 3, and I 
already have some advance copies, so am sending you one 
almost at once. I do wonder if you'll like it. Don't think my 
jokes, comments, speculations on religion, etc., flippant, will 
you. They aren't actually, of course, mine, but those of my 
protagonist, who is the narrator of the story, for it is in the first 
person, a method I have never used before. This has both 
advantages and disadvantages. It is fundamentally a serious 
book, particularly the religious side of it; but the narrator and 
the other characters may be thought by some readers to be 
discussing things in too sceptical a spirit. I hope you won't. 
When I reflect that but for you I should probably still be 
straying beyond the verges of the Christian Church, I remember 
that you are at least in part responsible for a novel which you 
mayn't really much like, in all its parts. Still, you may. Let 
me know candidly sometime, if you will; no hurry. 

I hope you are taking things easy in August, after your 
retreat period. If you read the T[imes] Lit. Sup. for iyth 
August, you will see it has a huge special supplement about 
"The Frontiers of Literature" ; one of the many articles is 
called " Religious Writing," and is by me. Not v.g., as I didn't 
quite know exactly what we were supposed to be writing 

227 



about; what, I mean, was the theme. Nor, I think, did most 
of my colleagues. 

I am reading a v. interesting large book on English Pulpit 
Oratory from Andrews to Tillotson, by W. Fraser Mitchell (1932). 
All iyth century, naturally. There is a long section on " The 
Anglo-Catholic Preachers," a good many besides Andrewes 
and Donne, who are less familiar than these. This morning I 

sat under Fr Ross at All Saints', [Margaret Street,] I like 

All Saints' (though I avoided it on Aug. 15, thinking I should 
be worried by Assumption fuss). G[rosvenor] Chapel is shut 
for August, and I go often to All Saints' on week days. 

We are having a wet chilly August. I go away for short 
times, but am mainly here, partly because [while] my sister's 
holiday was on she wanted to stay at home as her eyes 
are bothering her rather (cataract ripening slowly, and she 
won't see so well till after she can have the operation, but she 
can read all right, and do her work). I'm glad you enjoyed 
The Go-Between; I like it best of Hartley's books myself. I saw 
something of him during the July P.E.N. conference in London, 
when we had the foreign writers over here and entertained 

them. He is a nice, modest, quiet person Full, I mean, of 

good and kindly feelings. I thought you would like the 
Norfolk setting of that novel. I don't mind these Americanisms 
as much as you do, I think; some of them, of course, are i6th 
and i yth century English, which they took over there. I have 
noticed lately that some Americans use "presently' in its old 
sense of now, instead of its modern sense of soon. Is this 
common? I mean, e.g. " He is presently in New York." I 
have my enchanting godchild Emily 1 over here from Mass., 
where she lives, with the Harvard Glee [Club] singers, she 
being a friend of the conductor's daughter, 2 so she has been 
travelling about Europe with them. She is just 21, and 
delightful. 

1 Emily Smith. 

2 Harriet Woodworth, daughter of G. "Wallace WoodwortL 

228 



I will get hold of Bede Frost's book from the Library and 
read it. By the way, my novel (The Towers of Trebizond) is 
coming out later in America under another name, I think A 
Strange Wild Power* which words are taken from the epigraph 
I wrote for the title page. 2 They thought the other sounded 
like a travel book! Besides, what Americans have heard of 
Trebizond? I can't wait for you to read it. But don't feel you 
must write. This business of letters gets me down too ; un 
answered letters pile up like an unsealed mountain on my desk, 
daunting me and giving me faint nausea. I think you should 
be firm, and not give in to them. Have you read L. E.Jones's 
Edivardian Youth ? Mainly about the Balliol of 50 years ago. 
Not quite so charming as his Victorian Childhood? (mainly 
Eton), but very interesting. But he is wrong about the relations 
of the sexes; girls weren't at all in the segregated state he 
suggests. 

My love always, 
R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
September, I956f 



My dear Hamilton, 

Yours begun i6th Sept. came this morning, telling me my 
Towers had arrived; they took a long time en route. I do hope 
you will like the book, when you have finished it. Most people 
do, I think, and it has had a very good kind press, with a few 
exceptions. I think all Anglicans (including many clergy) like it. 
John Betjeman gave it a v. good review in the [Daily] Telegraph. 
The Church Times hasn't yet done it; I hope they'll approve! 
On the other hand, it doesn't go so well with R.C.S and 

1 See below p. 234. 

2 Dialogues of Mortality. 

3 L. E.Jones, A Victorian Boyhood (1955). 

229 



dissenters. I had a letter to-day which pleased me, from a friend 
who is agnostic, but wistfully religious. She writes: " That a 
person of your distinction and your entourage should affirm 
publicly, in August 1956, that she believes there is such a thing 
as sin, and that she is agin it, must hearten many also-rans who 
have had a suspicion all along that this might indeed be so. It 
will enliven their endeavours to stick to their notion that 
'what we have to gain, Is not one battle, but a weary life's 
campaign', and that it is better to wear our lives away in a 
doubtful attempt to see the job in hand through to the finish." 
I was touched and moved by this ; I know the kind of thing 
she has in mind a life with a difficult husband. And [another 
friend] . . . who has had a storm-tossed emotional life, with 
several successive husbands and lovers, wrote me a long letter, 
saying she loves the book, which "henceforth shall be my 
Bible. It is the most improving novel in my lifetime." That is 
nonsense, of course, and I only repeat it because I thought you 
might like to hear it said of a book by your daughter-in-God, 
for that I really am, you know, even though I feel that much 
of the way I have to look at things isn't the way you look at 
them, owing to different backgrounds, different temperaments, 
different minds. I don't mean that what I have, through six 
years, learnt from you, has any of it been rejected; it is all 
there, but planted, perhaps, in another soil and growing up 
therefore a little differently I fear not so much seges some 
times as just grass and things* But oh yes, there is the seges too, 
as you know. Anyhow, I do hope that you won't see any 
irreverent flippancy, or unseemly religious speculations, in this 
book of mine, even when it does seem to show levity on serious 
subjects. All I have said about the tensions set up by being 
separated by sin from God and the Church, are, as you will 
know, very personal. 

The seges quotation is Ovid, the Heroides I now forget 
which book. I don't know if he ever visited Troy's site, then 
a Roman city of course; lots of Romans did. Nor does one 

230 



know if seges ever flourished there; when I saw it, it was far 
from looking like corn land. 1 

Fr Chantry-Pi gg was old-world, and had his own whims 
about pronunciation, such as woof for wolf, and hool for howl. 
It does seem to me that ow was oo in most English words till 
I'm not sure when; it has been retained in names, such as 
Cowper. And a good deal in Scotland, as doon for down, hoo 
for how. O[ld] E[nglish] for owl was ula, Old German some 
thing similar, Latin ulula (hence ululate, and howl). Dunbar 
makes fule rhyme with oule. I say Cooky for the poet, but not 
for the Fathers, until I have their leave. Nor, I think, is it used 
for Cowley in Oxford. 

Hugh Ross Williamson, lately seceded to Rome on account 
of the Church of South India, has written his autobiography, 2 
which I am reviewing for the T[/wes] L[iterary] Supplement]. 
He has some surprising opinions about Anglican churches; he 
says there are now only two that he would call Anglo- 
Catholic: St Magnus the Martyr's, and the Annunciation, 
Bryanston Square [sic]. Not All Saints', [Margaret Street,] nor 
St Mary's, Graham St., nor St Matthew's, Westminster, nor 
any other these are only " High Church". It has also come 
to seem to him that Cranmer composed more of the Pjrayer] 
Bjook] than he can have thought when an Anglican ; e.g. the 
Prayer of Oblation, which he says is a Cranmer composition, 
to stress the idea of the sacrifice of ourselves as against offering 
the sacrifice of our Lord. But this prayer surely is a pre- 
Reformation one; my American P.B. [commentary] ascribes 
it to "ancient liturgies". Also he has since his conversion read 
only "true Catholic sources" of history so now he knows 
that the Gunpowder Plot was a Protestant one. How odd 

1 See The Towers of Trebizond, p. 36, where " Fr Chantry-Pigg" quotes 
from Ovid (Heroides 1.53), lam seges est ubi Troiafuit ("There is corn now 
where Troy was once"). 

2 Hugh Ross Williamson, The Walled Garden; an Autobiography (1956). 

231 



it must be to have one's whole intellectual outlook so 
coloured anew. 1 

I expect you perhaps by now may have read a little more 
of Trebizond and I long to know what you think of it; I do 
hope not too badly. You probably also by now know the sex 
of Laurie. I saw no need to stress it, since so much of life is 
common to both sexes; but of course I mention it near the 
end, and most people discerned it early. I adopted for Laurie 
a rather goofy, rambling prose style, to put the story at one 
remove from myself. I find that many readers and reviewers 
like this style, and some say they have caught it. I hope you 
laugh at the jokes, such as they are. The Queen reviewer, a 
woman, only saw one joke, the name Chantry-Pigg, and 
thought that a poor one. 2 I thought there were more than that. 
The camel and ape are popular with those who don't make 
much of the religious theme, so there is something for everyone. 
But I do know it is very faulty and imperfect. Farrar, Straus 
& Co. 3 are publishing it in America in the spring. My love; 
I hope you are well. I am. We are now all assembling after 
our summer holidays. Grosvenor Chapel is open again for 
daily Mass. 

Always, 
R.M. 



1 Hugh Ross Williamson points out that his book The. Gunpowder Plot 
(1951) was published four years before his conversion. 

2 The Towers of Trebizond was given an unfavourable (unsigned) review 
in The Queen (i8th September, 1956), but the name "Chantry-Pigg" was 
not mentioned. 

3 Farrar, Straus, & Cudahy, Inc. 



232 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
ist October, 1956^ 

My dear Hamilton, 

How lovely to get your letter postmarked Sept. 24. You 
will know by now that I also got the one before, that you 
feared was mis-posted. I think letters are, on the whole, pretty 
tough and clever, and usually wing their way to their destina 
tion, tho* there is an occasional annoying mishap of course. 
Anyhow, yours came, and I answered it, and I think in my 
letter I tried to explain that my book might perhaps in some 
parts make you feel not quite in accord with it, in some of its 
criticisms of the Church in history, and perhaps some of its 
jests. But now I have your letter written after you had read it, 
which much relieves me and delights me, because you do like 
it. I am so very glad. I looked up the pages you mentioned, 
and felt particularly glad that you had liked them (they are 
about the Church, and Laurie's vision of it), in spite of your 
being aware that some people might not. I should have been 
very very sad if you had disliked those pages or felt jarred by 
them. I suppose I was trying to set down some of the things 
I felt myself about it all. 

I too, you know, felt Laurie's half-stunned insensibility, 
and even aversion, towards the Church, for some time after the 
man I had loved for so long died. I don't take Laurie far enough 
in her life to get to where she, as I did, encounters some 
influence that brings her church-ward. But of course it came: 
feeling as she always had about the Church and about separation 
from God, she would not for very long be outside it. I like the 
Knox version of II Corin: 4, [3, 4,] which you mention: "our 
Gospel is only a mystery to those who are on the road to 
perdition, those whose unbelieving minds have been blinded 
... so that the glorious Gospel of Christ cannot reach them 
with the rays of its illumination . . .". The whole rendering of 
that splendid chapter is admirable. Oh dear, I often feel well 

233 



on the road to perdition myself, and that my mind is so blinded 
as to be incapable of prayer and access to God, so often. 
Perhaps I am permanently blinded and deafened, by all those 
years away from it all. 

I have long had that prayer on Ember Friday, about gratiae 
tuae lumen ostende, written out in my MS prayers, and often 
use it. 1 Ember days? You might be right in your etymological 
guess, for, says the O[xford] Dictionary], " It seems however 
not wholly impossible that the word may have been due to 
popular etymology working upon some Vul[gar] Latfin] 
corruption of quatuor tempora; (cf. German quatember, ember- 
tide)/' But how odd that such a popular corruption should 
have got into the written missals made by the clergy. First 
example in O.D. is [A.D.] iooo,Law$ of Alfred, "ymbren-wican", 
ember week. 

1 think the Latin in my American edition will be carefully 
checked over there. I am glad to say that Farrar, Straus have 
accepted my English title; it is much the best. The firm seems 
to like the book v. much. I wonder what the critics there will 
make of it. Here they have been wonderfully nice; many 
understand what it's all about, many are amused, some edified 
(this comes out in private letters more than in reviews), and the 
low-brows find in it a camel and an ape, which they enjoy. If 
you were at hand, I would show you the reviews; they might 
interest you. Only 3 reviewers haven't liked it. I was told that 
Christopher Hollis has done a good review for The Tablet (not 
yet out), which pleases me, as R.C.s don't all like it, and I'm 
not surprised. It amused Archbp Mathew, and apparently 
Evelyn Waugh, tho' I expect it made him cross too, he is so 
jealous about his own Church. One friend told me she had 
been considering poping, but, reading in my book about the 

1 " (Graciously hear us, O merciful God: and) shew forth (in our hearts) 
the light of thy grace"; see Collect for Ember Friday in Lent. 

2 Three days of fasting and prayer occurring in each of the four seasons 
of the Church year. Traditionally associated with the crops, now almost 
entirely with ordinations. 

234 



C. of E. and its glories, she is now going in for that instead ! 
So perhaps it really is, as John Betjeman claims, Anglican 
propaganda, I hope so. And I am asked where "the great OV * 
are to be found. 1 I am getting to feel a little like an Anglican 
missionary to the heathen ! . . . Did I tell you I had been seeing 
my American cousin and godchild, now just 21 ? ... An 
enchanting child. I wish she would go and see you. She is 
at Radcliffe. 

Much love always. 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.I 
I4th October, 



My dear Hamilton, 

How good you are. Two letters, one posted 4th, the other 
pth, and both so full of good things, and both answering mine. 
What you say about the Prayer of Oblation sent me to the 
American Prayer Book [Commentary] that Father Pedersen so 
kindly presented me with some four or five years ago. 2 I see 
it is, as you point out, much fuller than ours (the Prayer of 
Oblation, I mean). I had noticed that before, and marked the 
parts we don't use. I see the Invocation was in the 1549 book 
but left out of the 1552; what a pity. At least, it was, in 1549, 
stronger than it became in the American version. As to the 
oblation part, I can't think why Cranmer left out those words; 
they in no way imply re-sacrifice. 3 I shall remember to say 

1 The Greater Antiphons (or Great Advent Antiphons) are to be found 
in the Roman Breviary and translations are included in The English Hymnal 
("Introits and Anthems" 734). See The Towers of Tretizond, p. 208. 

2 See Letters to a Friend, p. 170. 

3 The words here italicized in the 1549 "prayer of oblation" were 
omitted from the Prayer Book of 1552: " Humbly beseeching Thee that 
whosoever shall be partakers of this holy communion may worthily receive 
the most precious Body and Blood of Thy Son Jesus Christ', and be fulfilled with 

235 



them myself during that prayer in future. I do add in a good 
deal of extraneous matter to the Mass prayers, actually. . . . 
Hugh Ross Williamson . . . whose autobiography I am review 
ing for the Times Literary Supplement implies that Cranmer 
invented this prayer. . . . With it I am doing a little book by 
the Red Dean of Canterbury 1 [who says] . . ., talking of the 
feeding of the 5000, that Christ ordered the food to be dis 
tributed "equally, to each according to his need." Well, it 
couldn't have been both. . . . 

Yes, I like my grandfather's translations of the Epistles, and 
of 2 Corinthians 4. I have been comparing it with Knox's; 
both are good. Those verses would indeed grace the Towers oj 
T. I suppose that in grandfilial loyalty I ought to use my 
grandfather's. I have a very nice copy of that book leather 
bound, 2 vok, i88i. 2 Has your 1892 edition got all those 
beautiful plates ? Mine has. I wish books still went in for those 
lovely soft pencil drawings; there is nothing like them now. 
I always wish so did she that my mother could remember 
her father; he died when she was a year old. 

Thank you for speaking so well from behind your side of 
the grating. A pity, I always feel, that I have no access to that 
grating; I should acquire many good things through it. But 
perhaps letters are as good. You invariably supply my mind 
with such various food both for thought and spirit. So I won't 
bother any more about perdition, but shall concentrate on 
grace. We have just been having a Church Week, in the Rural 
Deaconry 3 of Westminster; I am not quite sure what it was in 
aid of, but designed to put the C. of E. on the map in some 
way more than it was before. I didn't walk in a torchlight 
procession from St Stephen's, Rochester Row to the Abbey, 

Thy grace and heavenly benediction, and made one Body with Thy Son Jesus 
Christ, that He may dwell in them and they in Him/' 

1 Very Rev. Dr Hewlett Johnson, Christians and Communism (1956). 

2 W. J, Conybeare andj. S. Howson, Life and Epistles of St Paul (1852). 

3 Probably a slip for " Kural Deanery." 

236 



but some people did, including my friend Susan Lister. I don't 
know what effect such things really have, nor the rather dull 
addresses given at St Paul's Knightsbridge by five clergy from 

Monday to Friday. We had the Bp of , and him also of 

, besides 3 lesser divines. I only heard three of them, but 

they weren't interesting, not even the bishops. Much too 
earthen, many of these vessels. 

Did I tell you I had a very nice review in The Tablet, from 
Christopher Hollis ? I somehow wasn't expecting that. He no 
doubt thought that Laurie said some rather erroneous things 
about the Church, its past history, etc., but kindly provided 
me with a nice alibi, pointing out that her intellect had been 
somewhat corrupted by sin, and that her views were not to be 
identified with mine, as this would be most unfair. I thought 
rather generous in one of his communion; and as a review, it 
couldn't have been kinder. This Towers seems to be by some 
way the best received of any I have written, which I am glad 
of, for many reasons. 

Next Sunday I discuss with C. S. Lewis (before the St 
Francis Society in Cambridge; Fr Lothian Sumner 1 is its 
head), with Dr Chadwick 2 in the chair, " Some Difficulties 
which keep people out of the Christian Church." I put the 
difficulties; C.S.L., who is full of resource, supplies some 
answers. I have grabbed the easier role, as he says; but I 
obviously couldn't take the other. There will be a discussion 
after it, in which the undergraduate audience takes part. Dr 
Lewis says, " I can't fight Logical Positivists, and that is what 
we shall get." So think of us on Sunday next, 2ist, undergoing 
this from 4.30 to 5.30. I shall have time too to call on my 
Conybeare cousins, and perhaps see E. M. Forster. . . . 

Here come in by the 2nd post two more letters [about the 
Towers], one from a stranger, one from an old friend, who says : 

1 Fr Lothian, S.S.F., Friar-in-charge of the Cambridge house of the 
Society of St Francis. 

2 Dr Owen Chadwick, later Professor of Ecclesiastical History. 

237 



" It moved me more than [any] modern book I have read." 
The stranger (in the Highlands) says something similar. All this 
kind of thing makes me feel extremely small, it is so undeserved. 
But something in the book which was part of my own most 
poignant experience has somehow got across to people and 
moved them, and of course I am glad of that. No room to 
comment on your "Nunc autem mihi forsan vaces 1 . . " but it 
seemed to me flawless. 

My love always. 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
I4th November, I956f 

My dear Hamilton, 

I am not typing this, so I will try and write as well as you 
do, so that you mayn't have to bother at guessing any words. 
Ever since I had your last letter (posted 25th Oct.) ending with 
your just having had a visit from Constance B[abington] 
Smith, I have been longing to write, but time was more than 
usually elusive, and I never did. And the other day Constance 
telephoned, on her way through to Cambridge (Eng.), and this 
morning I drove her to Mass at 8.30 at St Paul's, Knightsbridge, 
and we had a delightful talk about her doings, and about how 
lovely it was seeing you, and how charming you had been, and 
all you had talked about. I wished I had made a third. I had 
asked her to visit you if she could, but hadn't warned you, in 
case she found it impossible. She is a great dear, isn't she, 
and did a very good job in America, I think. ... I must tell 
you of someone who likes [Trebizond] . . . Princess Margaret! 
It seems she read it, to herself and to her companions, on her 
voyage to Africa, and liked it so much that she wants to meet 
me ! So Mark Bonham Carter, a friend of hers and of mine, 
is having me to dine to-morrow night to meet her. I am 

1 " But now however you may perhaps have time to attend to me.'* 

238 



delighted that she likes it. What with Royalty, and the 
Anglican Hierarchy who next, I wonder ? Perhaps it will be 
the Pope, or Nasser; you never can tell. I hope my head won't 
get turned! (By the way, you ask who Dialogues of Mortality 
are by. By me, they are I usually have to compose my own 
epigraphs. Do you like it? It says what I feel is the book's real 
theme.) 

Yes, the Times Literary Supplement reviewer (don't 
know who) took me to be more "in the dark" than I am. 
Laurie was, of course, still, when the book ends. So, once, was L 
Laurie will come later on to where I am now, give her time. 
As to "the Rev. Chantry-Pigg," it rather surprised me that the 
well-informed editor (Alan Pryce-Jones), or his colleagues, 
didn't put that right. Some people who should know better 
do say it, in these days. Lord Kinross put it in some book, and 
I rebuked him in a review. But he was bred a Presbyterian, and 
is now nothing. 1 It used to be a complete vulgarism, of course. 

It was quite interesting meeting C. S. Lewis at St Francis 
House. He is very good and quick and witty in public speech, 
and I enjoyed him. It was my part to stimulate him with 
questions, and the evening went quite well. He is a great 
influence among undergraduates. I wish I knew what century 
had the first pictorial representation of God the Father. 
Nothing B.C., I think, owing to the Jewish inhibitions about 
art. Perhaps the catacombs. How pleased I feel that Constance 
saw you! But she said you looked very "frail", which disturbs 
me rather. How are you ? I send much love. 

R.M. 



1 Lord Kinross (who was an Episcopalian) recalls that when he wrote to 
R. M. explaining that his "solecism" had been meant facetiously, she replied 
apologizing for not having seen his ' joak." 

239 



1957 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
[Postmark: ijan., 1957] t 

My dear Hamilton, 

I have a feeling that it is more than time I heard from you 
again. Your last letter that I got was posted October 25 ; you 
had just been seeing Constance Babington Smith, you said in 
your very last lines at the end of the letter. I answered that, 
and wrote for Christmas, and sent you my Christmas card (self- 
composed) by surface mail, which I expect reached you after 
Christmas, or even may not have yet done so. But I am a little 
anxious about not having had a word for over two months, 
and no line of Christmas or New Year's greeting, and have 
been fearing that perhaps you haven't been well. Do send me 
a word to say how you are. I hope it was merely that you were 
rather tired, and not writing letters; but sometimes I reflect, 
if you are ill, should I know it? And [I] probably shouldn't, 
which disturbs me at times. But I do hope all is well. 

We had a rather uneasy Christmas, with the Suez dis 
turbance, and petrol rationing, and everything. One's activities 
are rather hampered by petrol shortage; e.g. early weekday 
Mass, to which I can't drive every day now. I sometimes go 
to St James's, Spanish Place, just across the street, but of course 
can't make my communion there, owing to these absurd walls 
that churches put up round themselves (how unChristian it is) ; 
sometimes to All Saints', Margaret St., which is slightly nearer 
than Grosvenor Chapel, and to which there is a bus if I can get 
it; to St Paul's, Knightsbridge, on the mornings I take the car 
(about twice a week, so far). The Annunciation, [Bryanston 
Street,] (nearer than these) I find tiresome and self-conscious. 
In St Paul's, Portman Square, just round the corner, nothing 
at all seems to occur on weekdays, and very little on Sundays. 
They have the 10 Commandments printed large outside, but 
the service list contains remarkably little. I suppose having my 
car has spoilt me; plenty of people have to do without this. 

243 



All Saints' is only 12 minutes' walk, actually. To-morrow they 
have one at 9, a very nice hour ! No one knows when rationing 
will end; perhaps not at all, even after the Canal is opened 
again, as oil costs dollars. Alas, what a sad mess Sir Anthony 
has made of things. . . . 

My book has been doing quite well, and has been received 
with almost universal kindness, which pleases me more than 
the money, though I am very glad to have the money just 
now, with so many things needing it refugees, South African 
causes, personal needs such as that of my sister who is just 
retiring from her life-long job of nursing, and has tied up most 
of her money in covenant subscriptions. . . . Luckily I have 
plenty for us both, and can take over her covenants, so far as 
she will let me. She has never spent a penny on herself, 
scarcely. I am glad she is now retiring, as she isn't anything 
like strong enough to go on. She means to do a little relief 
work, unpaid, but needn't do anything she doesn't feel 
able for. 

This should be a New Year's letter, but 1957 begins to 
morrow, and I am late for it. Constance did so enjoy seeing 
you but I think I told you that before. Didn't you find her 
charming ? She is such a lovable, delightful person. I think her 
book on Air Photography, which she went to America to 
interview people on, is going to be v.g. 1 

Did you read Fr Huddleston's Naught for Your Comfort'? 
... He is such a very nice person: we meet sometimes, and he 
likes my book. He is now much troubled about these S. 
African trials of alleged "traitors", most of whom he knows. 
" Christian Action " (Canon Collins's movement) is getting 
up a fund for their defence, and I am on a panel for this appeal. 
The world grows more and more dreadful and illiberal and 
unchristian. What kind of a year begins this midnight? One 
can't get one's thoughts off that poor boy of 21 who was 

1 C. Babington Smith, Evidence in Camera; Tlie Story of Photographic 
Intelligence in World War 11(1958). 

244 



deliberately gagged and suffocated in a box by the Egyptians, 
and his poor parents. 1 What is this awful substance of which 
human beings are so bestially made? It is hard to face. 

Much love for 1957. I hope for a letter soon. Perhaps one 
may cross mine. Meanwhile, I think of you often, and hope 
you are well. 

Yours always, 
R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
I2th February, I957f 

My dear Hamilton, 

Your letter posted Feb. 8 arrived yesterday, a coal of fire, 
because it is your 3rd since my last to you, and. that last was 
one of anxiety because it was longer than I liked since I [had] 
heard, and I was rather anxiojis lest you might not be well. 
You can imagine my relief when I got yours of 3ist Dec. I 
didn't reply to it at once, nor to the next, partly because very 
much occupied, and partly because I didn't want to burden 
you with the feeling that it was again your turn to write. I 
myself know so well that inhibition caused by preoccupations, 
demands for immediate replies to other letters, reluctance to 
write at all, in my case laziness and the mere hurrying by of 
time, so relentlessly fugitive. Don't think that when I don't 
write I don't enjoy and peruse and think about every line you 
send me; they are always so full of interesting and suggestive 
and delightful matter. The two I have before me (I seem to 
have mislaid for the moment the one posted Jan. u, but it will 
turn up) are both most interesting. I didn't know I hadn't told 
you of my dinner to meet Princess Margaret. I enjoyed it v. 

x Lt Anthony Moorhouse, of the West Yorkshire Regiment, was 
abducted by Egyptians in Port Said on nth December, 1956, and died a 
few days later from suffocation in a large steel box. 

245 



much. She is a charming person. . . . There were, besides my 
hosts (Mark Bonham Carter and wife), Lady Elizabeth 
Cavendish, a great friend of the Princess, and of John Betjeman 
and other people I know, a very nice girl . . . and two men . . . 
I had a conversation with her; she first read the Towers at 
Balmoral, and laughed so much, alone in a room, that the 
Queen her sister came do,wn to know what was the matter. 
Then the Queen read it, and also laughed. She took it on her 
African trip and read it aloud to people. . . . Her talk is very 
largely about records and gramophones and Covent Garden 
opera; one of the men at dinner was concerned with this. We 
heard some records during the evening and also discussed the 
pronunciation of words a little, which is much more up my 
own street. She is a very bright, high-spirited girl. One calls 
her " Ma'am " at intervals, just to show one remembers who 
she is; but conversation with her is quite easy and natural. Yes, 
it was a great thing that she made that decision; 1 I think she 
would have felt very unhappy and out of things if she had made 
that marriage, besides feeling wrong. It would have been a 
tragic situation, and no life for her. ... I hope some one she 
can love and marry will turn up before long. And that she 
will always stay within the " heavenly mystery'*, whoever she 
marries. . . . Mr Phipps, the very influential Chaplain of 
Trinity, Cambridge, of whom she is very fond . . . gave last 
week a series of broadcast 5-minute talks at 7.50 a.m. (a series 
I always listen to as I get ready to sally out to Mass) and was 
admirable. 2 This week the talks are anonymous, and called " I 
was an atheist" or fan agnostic") and are by an Anglican 
Franciscan, a doctor, a journalist, a headmistress, a housewife, 
and an electrical fitter (who calls his talk " I was a pagan." I 
don't expect he knows what a pagan is, or about the number of 

1 Princess Margaret's decision (in October 1955) not to marry Group 
Captain Peter Townsend. 

2 A series of talks, "Jesus Lives," in the BBC programme " Lift up 
Your Hearts." 

246 



strange gods in fields and hills and woods that pagans wor 
shipped; but illiterates, including, alas, many of our clerical, 
even episcopal, earthen vessels often use the word as meaning 
atheist, so I expect this fitter does too). I wish they would have 
also a writer, as this might have been interesting. The general 
subject is how they became Christians. A psychologically 
fascinating theme. I agree with you about the understatement 
usual in novels about religious belief, and that there must be far 
more prayer and awareness of God than is generally allowed in 
fiction. Many reviewers share this blind spot; reviewers of the 
Towers were divided into those who apprehended its religious 
theme and discussed it, and those who didn't really take it in 
at all, but found the book merely amusing, and perhaps a good 
travel tale. Its readers are also thus divided; many of them tell 
me how much they enjoyed it, but lots of these say " I never 
laughed so much at a novel. The camel! " etc. I'm glad to 
find, tho', that very many others liked the serious theme, 
including, to my surprise, known unbelievers such as Julian 
Huxley, who told me he "much liked the religious parts. One 
realises that there must be an institution like the Church, to 
enshrine people's religious and moral values." I feel particularly 
glad that most clerical readers and reviewers have liked it. I 
will send you a copy of Gerard Irvine's review in the monthly 
London Magazine. He describes my Anglicans as being " High, 
and also regrettably broad"; he means, of course, Laurie and 
me, not Fr Chantry-Pigg ! 

I am interested in your reading my earlier novels, especially 
And No Mans Wit. I'm glad you like the way they converse. 
I haven't, so far as I remember, got much religion in that; but 
some discussion of it may have seeped in; it is difficult for any 
of my family to keep it out, whatever our beliefs ! An end 
seems to have come to this. I do hope you are fairly well. . . . 
I keep well, and get to Mass somehow most mornings. I've 
just heard that the Towers has been awarded the James Tait 
Black annual prize by Edinburgh University, which pleases 

247 



me. 1 No more now but my love. I hope you'll get some nice 
Valentines on I4th. 

Your affectionate 
R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.I 
29th March, I957f 

My dear Hamilton, 

Thank you for yours of 25th March, and for that of iyth 
Feb., which I have left far too long in answering; but you 
know how time rushes by. One is delighted to have a letter, 
reads it more than once, and lays it by in the place where to- 
be~answered-presently letters lie and pile up. "To-be-answered- 
at-once,-or-as-near-as-I-can" is a more urgent pile, consisting 
of bills, invitations, questions which demand reply, etc., etc. 
Both piles grow much too high, I needn't say, while one 
pursues one's other labours. Mine have partly consisted lately 
in a contribution to a book to be presented to T. S. Eliot on 
his yoth birthday. I am trying to recall what I felt about his 
poetry when first I read it, or some of it, in the early 19205. 
The impact was enormously exciting, and I have been trying 
to put it into words. 2 Also, I have other literary jobs to try 
and fmish before I go to Venice in early May. 

The Towers of Treb. is coming out in America this month, 
I think; I am shocked at the vulgarity of the paper jacket, 
which is covered with absurd figures, meant, so far as one can 
judge, to represent the people in the book, absurdly caricatured. 
I asked to have the jacket sent me to see beforehand, but the 

1 The annual choice of books for the James Tait Black Memorial Prizes 
is made by the Professor of English Literature at Edinburgh University. 

2 See R. M/s essay " The First Impression of the Waste Land " in T. S. 
Eliot; a Symposium for his Seventieth Birthday edited by Neville Braybrooke 
(1958). 

248 



publishers didn't send it. So now I expect it will be reviewed 
as a vulgar comic book ! 

I am sorry you find that I am not well considered in the 
American press. I certainly don't complain of the attitude 
towards me of tl}e English press, which is revealed in my press 
cuttings, and in the periodicals I see. Perhaps if the Americans 
neglect me (they didn't use to) it is because I haven't published 
anything there much lately, and one gets forgotten. Nothing 
between 1940 and 1950, and nothing since then till now, as they 
didn't do my Ruin book. I was interviewed the other day by 
an American called Webster (the same that did the one on Ivy 
Compton-Burnett that you mention, probably). He is engaged 
on a survey of contemporary fiction, and is including me. He 
said he had at first decided not to include me, on the grounds 
that I was "frivolous"; but he had, on second thoughts, and 
on taking advice, decided to do so, as he discovered that I was 
"thought good", tho' perhaps still rather "frivolous". But 
serious too, he thought. He isn't a very weighty thinker, I 
imagine. But I don't mean to be depressed by your reports of 
American neglect; I really do get some very nice attention 
from there; all I merit, I feel. One day I will send you some 
English reviews of the Towers spares, that I don't want back. 
I don't know what more one could want. I have to-day from 
Germany an article which, quite untruly, calls me'seit demTode 
Virginia Woolfs Englands klilgste, wenn nicht bedcutendste 
Schrifstellerin. Ihre Bucher sind getragen von Shawschem Witz, 
Swiftscher Phantasie und Ironie . . ." 1 etc., etc., if you can make 
all that out; I can't quite, but I see it is kindly meant ! (I expect 
your German isn't as good as your Latin !) 

More than enough about my reputation. Don't be anxious 
when I don't write. I am seldom ill, and have had no ailment 

1 " England's most intelligent or even most prominent authoress since 
die death of Virginia Woolf. Her books are sustained with the wit of 
Shaw, the fantasy and irony of Swift." 

249 



for ages but a touch of flue. I have more reason to worry 
about your health, I feel. I was interested in your point 
about the childishness of many of my young female characters. 
I expect it is that I was young for my age myself, what is called 
a tomboy, and liked to do all those things you mention. But 
I don't think girls and women in general do, so much as boys 
and men. I used to find that most of my adventures were more 
shared by my brothers than my sisters, on the whole, though 
we all liked adventure. And when I was at Oxford, at 18, I 
had a reputation for liking roof-climbing, etc., which wasn't 
shared by any of my friends. Surely men do far more uncom 
fortable things than women do; camping out in snow, 
exploring tropical jungles, etc. I think women are much less 
fitted for and fond of such rigours. As to their clothes well, 
I suppose high heels are pretty comfortless for walking, and I 
never wear them myself. Nor do I like cold or draughts. But 
I too am puzzled by some of the uncomfortable things some 
women wear. But, as to that, look at men in hot weather in 
heavy suits. But I agree that men like comfort in clothes and 
chairs, etc., before appearance and that many women don't. 
Food, too. But I should die in an Arctic blizzard. Just look 
what men voluntarily go through. No, I don't think you have 
anything there. 

Many come up. Derived (see O[xford] Dictionary]) from St 
Mary of Egypt, by whom people used to swear. Became 
" Mary Gipsy", then " Mary Gip", [then] "Gup" (what you 
say to horses when driving them), [and then] got (by association 
with this) to be " Mary come up." This seems a natural enough 
development, I suppose. Language is queer. I've never seen 
the 1636 P[rayer] B[ook] meant for Scotland, but always 
thought it was only a little different from the B[ook of] 
Cfommon] Pfrayer], and, as you say, the source of the American 
one. Isn't it also what the Scotch Episcopals use now? The 
Scotch thought it was "the Mass" but they thought ours was 

250 



too, of course. 1 Very odd about that word " Mass", why it is 
so hated by extreme Protestants, when all it is is (as the 1549 
book says) "the Holy Communion or the Lord's Supper, 
commonly called the Mass". St Paul's (Knights.) is some 
times picketed on Sunday mornings by sandwich-board 
men saying " The Mass is a blasphemous fable" (see article [31]) 
and other Kensitite 2 utterances. It seems all a question of the 
name you give it. I am just now following High Mass with the 
1549 book, rather confusing, as we've chopped it about so. 
So much of the service/0//ouW the consecration and administra 
tion then. I must say I like it as we now have it (not, of course 
B.C.P.). Oh dear, so much more I meant to say, but here is 
the end, as usual. 

Yes, surely : Bemdictus benedicat, and Benedicto benedicatur. 
Has it gone wrong ? I correct proofs shockingly. 3 Your letter 
is full of interest; e.g. about reasons for non-religious novels 
in America. I meant to tell you about an. R.C. novel I am 
reading. I will, later. 

Till then, my love. 
R.M. 



1 The first Scottish Prayer Book (approved in 1636, but usually known as 
the Scottish Prayer Book of 1637, the year of its publication, or as "Laud's 
Liturgy") was based largely on the Book of Common Prayer of 1549. The, 
first American Prayer Book (of 1789) was based partly upon the subsequent 
"Scottish Communion Office" of 1764, and partly upon the English Prayer 
Book of 1662. The Prayer Book currently used by the Scottish Episcopal 
Church is a twice revised version of the "Scottish Communion Office." 

2 Reminiscent of the Protestant propagandist John Kensit (1853-1902). 

3 Presumably R. M. had misquoted the Graces "Benedictus benedicat" 
(" May the Blessed one bless"), said at the beginning of a meal, and 
"Benedicto benedicatur" (" Blessing on the Blessed one"), said at the con 
clusion. 

251 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
2nd June, 1957! 

My dear Hamilton, 

I put off writing till I was back from Venice, as there are 
no air letters there, so I think I have not yet answered your 
last letter, which I have before me now; it came to Venice 
with me, and I thought of writing, but decided to wait till I 
was back, as you suggested. Venice was delightful, as always. 
What a place it is ! A unique mixture of physical beauty and 
magnificent works of art, both architecture and painting. St 
Mark's always wholly captivates me, tho' I know some people 
don't care for the shape of its facade; but I agree with Ruskin 
about the beauty of this. And how marvellous inside, with its 
great cruciform shape and golden mosaicked apses. It has very 
beautiful singing, and we often dropped in for vespers or some 
Mass. In all the Venice churches there are evening Masses now, 
as well as in the mornings. (Our little C. of E. church is rather 
bleak; I went there at 8.30 on Sundays for communion, as 
these fanatic and intolerant Romans won't let us communicate 
in theirs.) Then the Piazza, and the Doge's Palace, as beautiful 
Gothic as St Mark's is Byzantine, and the little streets winding 
along by the little canals, and the wonderful, mainly baroque, 
churches all about, some most beautiful, and the charming 
little campos, or squares, with their market stalls and stone 
fountains in the middle, and the Grand Canal with all its 
splendid palazzos. We stayed in a small and pleasant pensions 
on the Giudecca Canal, with a wonderful view of the Giudecca 
opposite, and the island of San Giorgio with its Palladian 
church. Quite near us was the magnificent Salute church. Near 
also was the Accademia gallery, with its wonderful pictures. 
The weather was, in the main, warm and sunny and delightful, 
and coming away was sad. But more and more I am struck 
by the follies of the R.C. church the sheer childish nonsense. 
[A friend of mine] ... a convert thro' marriage, who was in 

252 



Venice, says that he just by-passes the follies (e.g. indulgences 
and miracles), which he says are only meant for the simple. I 
don't think I would like to belong to a church which deliber 
ately taught nonsense to children, and "simple" people, which 
the more educated priests don't believe themselves. Can this 
be right ? 

The Towers ofT. has had an excellent reception in America. 
Time only gave it a snippet, after asking me for a photograph 
and saying it was giving it a full-page review. ... I got a 
quite kind review, however, from an R.C. Religious, who had 
been interested by it, and thought it revealed "a new facet of 
the Protestant mind." But, he said, the feeling left by it in 
Catholics must be sorrow that so much faith and earnestness in 
religion was based on nothing (i.e. on false premises and false 
teaching). It amounted to saying that God was "nothing", but 
of course he didn't mean that. What a strange and sad point 
of view theirs is I mean, discounting all other faiths but their 
own narrow one. I'm afraid there is rather an unseemly rivalry 
and even war being waged now between the two Catholic 
churches in this country. The Archbishop of Canterbury] 
spoke strongly about the Roman propaganda campaign, 1 and 
about the boast they make of converts, which [sic] he says are 
less in number than the other way round. They are starting a 
Church Enquiry Centre, to offset the "Catholic Enquiry 
Centre", which has launched a huge campaign for converts. 
Yet, feeling as R.C.S are taught to do about their exclusive 
Tightness, I suppose they must try for converts. The really 
unChristian thing is to forbid their members to join in prayer 
with other Christians; goodness, what would Our Lord have 
said to that ? They have certainly taken a very wrong turning. 
But then I suppose all Christian churches have, being human 
as well as divine. . . . 

I should like to show you also another kind review, this 
time from the Nonconformist angle, in the British Weekly. It 

1 Archbishop Fisher, reported in the Church Times, 3ist May, 1957. 

253 



said how few novels depicted Nonconformity in action, com 
pared with those which dealt with R.Cism and Anglicanism, 
and what a different standpoint it was, with its emphasis on the 
Word, Bible reading, and preaching, and its comparative 
neglect of the sacramental life that means so much to Romjan] 
and Anglican Catholics. " The sin of Anglicanism is to make 
sacraments more and more central but to neglect preaching. 
The sin of Nonconformity is to treat sacraments often as little 
more than optional embellishments/' etc. It is an interesting, 
fair, and thoughtful review; the writer thought I have no 
knowledge or understanding of Nonconformity, and probably 
would not like it if I had. Of the book he says he laughed all 
through it, but takes it also very seriously. It all makes one feel 
how many mansions there are, and must be, inside the Christian 
Church, each contributing its facet of light and truth. How 
angry R.C.s are at this point of view, however! 

I do hope you are well. Write to me sometime and say 
how you fare. Meanwhile, my love. 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
2nd August, 1957 f 

My dear Hamilton, 

Yours of 22nd July came the other day, rather to my 
remorse, as I hadn't yet answered the one of 22nd June, which 
was really an answer to mine. I now have both letters before 
me, and very nice too. Thank you so much. I do know how 
troublesome writing is, and I do take it as a mark of great 
kindness and affection, and value it much. I myself have been 
pretty busy finishing one or two things I had on hand, such 
as a long article on the Mediterranean for a book of photo 
graphs which is to be published early next year, also in America. 1 
1 RolofF Beny, The Thrones of Earth and Heaven (1958). 
254 



The photographs are beautiful, the text is by four different 
writers; me, Freya Stark, Stephen Spender, and Bernard 
Berenson. 1 And now I am free to turn to other writings, such 
as my coming novel (not yet begun). . . . 

Talking of "markets" for books, I too was surprised that 
The Towers got on to the American best-selling list. I was 
interested in an article in (I think) the N[ew] Y[ork] Times (or 
was it the Saturday Review ?) a little while back, on these lists. 
The writer, a very intelligent young man, said that on every 
such list there seemed to be two or three samples of what he 
called "minority literature", which were forced into best 
sellers by good reviews, but would never be naturally so. Those 
he mentioned in this class were The Towers ofT., The Fountain 
Overflows by Rebecca West, and I think one by Aldous Huxley. 
He was talking of the most recent best-seller lists, and of what 
he called "intellectual" novels that got into them. What the 
great mass of readers make of them when they read them is 
another matter. As to The Towers 9 those who didn't care about 
the 39 Articles perhaps quite liked the camel, and one or two 
of the jokes. I wonder how E. Waugh's Mr Pinfold is liked 
in America. It has had a mixed reception here. It's not 
amusing at all, and deals with hallucinations, which is rather 
a boring subject, but it is very clever in parts. As to the Towers* 
I find they have introduced me to a number of priests who like 
it, and who accost me about it, and whom I am glad to meet. 
One is Simon Phipps, the Dean 2 of Trinity, Cambridge . . . 
whom I met the other day at a Spectator sherry party, and found 
delightful. I believe he has a great church influence in Cam 
bridge, among undergraduates, and is a counter influence to 
C.LC.C.U. But an Oxonian told me that the most numerous 
conversions at Oxford just now were to Islam. I said that this 
seemed to me very odd, and what was the attraction? He 
replied that so many men liked women to be behind grilles and 
in galleries when at church, and not taking up the seats on the 

1 Also by a fifth, Jean Cocteau. 2 R- M. means Chaplain. 

255 



floor, which annoyed them. This seems rather unfair ! If they 

get to church in time, they can get seats all right. But they 

don't, it seems, like the idea of a church full of females. Even 

Pusey House is now invaded by women undergraduates. Well, 

I suppose Moslemism is better than no religion at all, tho' to me 

it is very unattractive. Did you over there get the reports of 

the claim of a priest to have converted Gilbert Murray to the 

R.C. Church on his deathbed? It sounds most unlikely to us 

who knew him well, and even his R.C. daughter, Mrs 

Toynbee, made no claim for it, as she said her father had been 

practically unconscious, except for moments, for 5 or 6 weeks 

before he died. 1 His son Stephen was indignant, and firmly 

repudiated such an idea, in letters to The Times, saying his 

father had died as he had lived, "a reverent agnostic" 2 . ... I 

went to the memorial service at the Abbey, where the ashes 

(after cremation by his own desire) were buried; it was a fine, 

rather austere service; the Dean 3 composed it, I think. He put 

emphasis on the words " Not every one who saith Lord, Lord, 

shall enter into heaven, but rather whoso doeth the will . . ," 4 

which G. M. certainly did. Some distinguished agnostics here 

were rather alarmed lest their convert relatives should intrude 

a priest to their deathbeds and make the same claim. I hope to 

protect myself with Anglican rites. . . . Not that one would 

make a distinction between two forms of Christian rite, but 

one would want what one is used to and loves. The differences 

are, of course, really things of this world, things of the flesh, 

and we should not mind them. Are you quite fair in classing 

Maugham . . . with Aldous Huxley and Lawrence, who both 

have spiritual vision, I should say? D. H. L. isn't cynical; he 

1 Rosalind Toynbee comments that R. M.'s account of her attitude 
appears to be based on indirect information which she regards as inaccurate. 

2 This statement by Stephen Murray was first made in a letter to the New 
Statesman (2<$i June, 1957), not to The Times, 

3 Very Rev. A. C.Don. 
4 See Matt. 7. 21. 

256 



has great and earnest enthusiasm for what he believes of life . . . 
[sic] but I see I can't expatiate on this as space has run out. I 
wonder if you are still almost alone in your House. How good 
that your novices are so promising. I like to think of you deep 
in Terence and Plautus. What a nice study ! Do read a book on 
Crashaw, by an American Austin Warren it is v.g. 1 Much 
love, and my thanks always, 

R.M. 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
yd December, 1957! 

My dear Hamilton, 

Thank you so much for your welcome letter dated Nov. 
12-15. I was so glad to get it. I knew it was a long time since 
I wrote, but not that it was as long ago as August ! Time goes 
by so quickly, in such a rush, one can't keep pace. And now 
Xmas makes it worse than ever. But you have been much and 
often in my thoughts and prayers, and always in my affections. 
I have been quite well, not even had the Asian flue, which 
has afflicted so many of my friends and non-friends but has not 
come nigh me, perhaps because I got myself inoculated 
against it, as I usually do get any flue that is going about. I 
have been very much cluttered up with work, mainly articles 
and reviews, which after Xmas I hope to shed, as I want to get 
down to my next novel, not yet begun. Now here we are in 
Advent, which I find a very exciting and rather disturbing 
season, and [it] makes one think more than ever of the hourly 
judgment of God on every thing one thinks, says, or does; I 
suppose the advent of God in this way becomes closer and more 
apparent the more one lives, unless one goes on ignoring it 
entirely till it fades into unrecognizability. This, to me, seems 
1 Austin Warren, Richard Crashaw; a Study in Baroque Sensibility (1957)- 

257 



to be the Judgment, not any unspecified and dateless Great Day, 
Dies Irae, etc., in which people used to believe with such 
apprehension and looking forward. Judgment; coming each 
morning at Communion, coming whenever one turns one's 
mind that way, which one ought to do more often. I like 
Advent and the great O's. I have printed four of them, 
Radix, Clams, Oriens and Sapiential to work into the verse I 
have composed for my Xmas card this year, and which I shall 
send you by surface mail to-day, I hope. 

You mention Constance Babington Smith's book. Bits of 
it are even now being serialised in the Sunday Times, and she is 
very busy arranging these, and very happy. The book comes 
out here in January. I hear it is selling well in America ; 2 I don't 
quite know why, but I never quite understand why all these 
books about the last war and its doings have such a sale. I never 
read them myself, and shouldn't read this one if it wasn't by my 
dear Constance, whom I love. She ... has put the story 
together in a very efficient way, and her publishers are pleased 
with it. She is a great dear. Not intellectual, like some of the 
Babington Smiths, but capable, and very charming. She began 
by making smart hats, then fell in love with planes and once 
designed a hat made like a bomber, which she wore at an 
aeronautic garden party. I saw her this very morning, when 
she was up for 2 days, and I drove her to 8.15 Mass at Grosvenor 
Chapel. You would like her very much if you knew her, and 
she you; in fact, she did. 

Please keep this under the seal, so to speak (really under), 3 
as it isn't the thing to mention it beforehand, and I should 
simply hate it to get about America, or London, as it is really 
private. I have been officially offered the rank of Dame, of 
which there [are] very few just now, and only Edith Sitwell 

1M O Root (of Jesse)"; "O Key (of David)"; "O Day-spring'*; "O 
Wisdom/* 

*Air Spy, the U.S. edition of Evidence in Camera, was published in 1957. 

3 R. M. does not mean this "literally" (Father Johnson had not been 
her confessor since 1916). 

258 



to represent letters, though several actresses. I am considering 
whether to accept it or not. It might make me feel rather 
foolish, and I should prefer a C.B.E., which a lot of writers do 
get, it is less conspicuous. But I am told that perhaps one can't 
commute for this ! So I am still undecided. What would you 
do ? But don't bother to answer this, as I have to decide by 
next Monday, before you even get this letter. I have only told 
my sister, who of course is for the Dame, but her advice is not 
impartial. 

I am glad you occupy yourself with Plautus and book- 
covering. I was reading the other day in the Latin Hymns you 
sent me once (nicely covered by you), 1 and in which you 
enclosed separately part of St Bernard's great hymn, the part 
beginning Hora novissima and translated by Neale. 2 It strikes 
me that Neale made rather a noisy business out of "agminis et 
sonus est epulantis"\ "the shout of them that feast" suggests 
rather a pagan banquet than a feast of saints. But it goes well; 
I remember liking it, and the picture it evoked, when I was a 
child. 3 

Someone said to me the other day that my next novel was 
bound to be a let-down, to some extent, to those who liked 
very much the last, which a good many people did. I dare say 
the next won't be liked so much, and I shall- miss the apprecia 
tion of so many clergy; but I don't feel one should be daunted 
by this. I shall write it as it comes, and keep its readers as far 
out of my mind as I can. Oh dear, how well I know all you 
say about putting off things one has to do. It is a disease with 
me, and letters pile up like snowdrifts, accusing me all the time. 
So do books I ought to have reviewed, etc., etc. I will send 
you the Xmas Spectator, with an article I wrote in it about 

1 The Hundred Best Latin Hymns; selected byj. S. Phillimore (1926); see 
Letters to a Friend, p. 261. 

2 John Mason Neale (1818-1866) translated several parts of the long poem 
De Contempt* Mundi by Bernard of Cluny (not by St Bernard of Clairvaux) 
including die passage which begins Hora Novissima. 

3 See The English Hymnal, Hymn 412, "Jerusalem the Golden." 

259 



Xmas. 1 There seems to be more and more a general revolt 
against the racket we have made of it. I suppose really it should 
be a time for giving to the most needy, not exchanging presents 
and cards with one another. I am glad to say that Fr Harris 
preached very well about this on Advent Sunday. I must stop 
this and do up my card for you now, and sally out to the post 
I do hope you will keep well over Xmas, and not get unwritten 
letters on your mind as you cover books and read Plautus. I 
have been reading a lot of Tractarian-age books, all interesting. 
How terribly the Articles bothered most of them! But 
Newman wrote (Tract go) didn't he, that R.C.s could sign 
all of them except the one about the Pope ? 2 R.C.s now write 
in The Tablet, "Catholic toleration" (of Anglo-Catholics) "has 
been carried to its very limits". But what do they propose to 
do about it ? I pass Smithfield with apprehension ! 3 My love 
and greetings for Xmas and New Year. 

Your affectionate 
R.M. 



1 "Saturnalia," see The Spectator, 22nd November, 1957. 

2 This is a free interpretation, not a literal one, of Newman's Tract go. 

3 It was at Smitkfield that about 300 Protestants were burned during 
Mary Tudor 's reign. 



260 



1958 



20, Hinde House, Hinde St., W.i 
I2thjune, 195 8 f 

My dear Hamilton, 

It was nice to see your handwriting on a U.S. air letter 
yesterday morning on my return from Mass at G[rosvenor] 
Cfhapel]. It is indeed far too long since we wrote. Not either 
of our faults really, I think, for we were both hampered and let 
by circumstances. Of course I should have written ages ago, 
to tell you all my news and comment on yours. But I was 
attacked soon after Xmas (you did, I hope, get my Xmas card 
the one with tumbling towers and my version of some of 
the great O's; perhaps you have written since then, yes, I 
think you did) by rather bad and repeated onslaughts of what 
we call here fluemonia, the kind that goes to the lungs, and 
when you think you are recovered returns and strikes you again. 
I was in and out of bed for some time; [then] went to the 
Palace to be darned on nth Feb., a rather nice occasion, for I 
knew most of the five Knights in my category (the K.C.B.E.s), 1 
I being a D.C.B.E. 2 (but for short we are K.B.E.s and 
D.B.E.). And most were Cambridge, such as Julian Huxley, 
Jim Butler, and others, 3 and we had a friendly get-together 
beforehand while we were coached in how to deport ourselves 
when receiving our decorations from H.M. She does those 
things very charmingly, pinning on the decorations and saying 
a few pleasant words to each recipient. I felt rather ill, however, 
and after that went down to Dorset to Raymond Mortimer's 
house to rest and recover. Soon after my return I lunched with 
Patrick McLaughlin in Dean Street, and, coming out, turned 
to speak to Fr Denis Marsh 4 behind me, stepped into space 
down the steps and crashed into the street, breaking my right 

1 Knights Commander of the British Empire. 

2 Dame Commander of the British Empire. 

3 J. R. M. Butler, as well as Claude Elliott, S. C. Roberts, and Steven 
Runciman had been at Cambridge; Julian Huxley at Oxford. 

4 Fr Denis, S.S.F. 

263 



wrist and thigh. I was ambulanced to Charing Cross Hospital, 
where the fractures were set (very expertly) and I was put to 
bed in the public fracture ward, where I lay for a fortnight, 
tended by pleasant nurses and surrounded by other fractures. 
It was rather noisy and restless of course; I liked my seven 
fellow-fracturees, but they never stopped talking. We were 
brought H[oly] C[ommunion] on Sunday morning from St 
Martin~in-the-Fields ; I was the only one in the ward to "take 
it", so my bed was curtained off, including a young man from 
the men's ward, and we had it. The others were very nice and 
quiet during the short service. One of them said to me sym 
pathetically afterwards, " It makes a nice change, doesn't it?" 
She herself had been brought up R.C. " but there, you can't 
believe it, can you," she added philosophically. There was 
another R.C., an Irish girl who told us about Our Lady's statue 
at Lourdes weeping "real tears" ; we were all quite polite about 
this. But after a fortnight I was moved to a private room at the 
Univjersity] Collfege] Hospital in Gower St., where I could 
have my typewriter and type with my left hand, the other 
being encased in plaster, and have all my kind friends to see me 
and adorn my room with lovely flowers. Two chaplains used 
to drop in, the Anglican, a cheerful and gossipy young man 
who entertained me, and the Roman, v. nice, tho' quieter. 
There was a third, from the Whitefield Tabernacle close by, 1 
but he didn't call in the Private Wing, as he had no adherents 
there. What a snob business church life is, to be sure. Reading 
a book by Peter Kirk lately, 2 I learnt that his father, the late 
Bish. of Oxford, had been brought up a Methodist, and that 
Peter never knew this till after his death when he was going 
thro' his papers. Isn't that odd. So difficult, one would think, 
to conceal it from one's children. I suppose the grandparents 
were dead. But children ask questions of their parents, how 

1 The Whitefield Memorial Church (Congregationalist church in 
Tottenham Court Road). 

2 Peter Kirk, One Army Strong? (1958). 

264 



many times did they have to go to church on Sundays, etc. ; we 
certainly knew, from my father and uncles all about Hodnet 
church where my grandfather 1 was rector, in fact we have often 
been there. Df Kirk must have found it a job to keep his 
childhood so dark from his enquiring young. I wonder if his 
wife knew. One can only suppose this was a form of snobbery, 
tho' P[eter] K. says he can't imagine why it was. Well, I was 
hospitalized for 6 weeks, and came out a few weeks ago, since 
when I have been desperately trying to catch up on my life. 
My hand is still n.g, for writing more than a very short time, 
but I can type. My leg is almost all right. I can now drive 
my car again. But it was all a great interruption, and I am very 
much behind. Yes, you address me quite correctly as " Dame 
R. M." The simple call me often " Dame Macaulay", which 
is like " Rev. Jones", or " Sir Churchill"; I think they are 
rather shy of Christian names. A letter in The Observer lately 
spoke of " The Venerable Higgins and the Rev. Wilson". 
Lady Juliet Duff, whom I have been visiting in hospital lately 
(St Saviour's, Osnaburgh St.) was called by all the nuns except 
the Mother " Lady Duff". This letter seems all about me; I 
meant to write for your birthday, and wish I had. I am glad 
you are stronger now, and very glad you are retiring early, and 
generally being looked after. The "shattering Reformation" 
in your cell is one I need in my flat! I would love to see you 
as "no small dandy" in your shortened habit. Brother Paul 2 
writes to me, to ask me if he may use in his devotional 
magazine 3 some verses of mine from the Xmas cards I have 
sent you, and which he says you have passed to him. Of course 
he may; I am writing to him. I haven't got L. P. Hartley's 
book, 4 and am not reviewing it; but I think I shall get it for 
you as a belated birthday gift if you would like it, so expect its 

1 Rev. S. H. Macaulay (iSoy-c. 1873). 

2 Brother Paul, Oblate, S.SJ.E. 

3 Many Mansions, a privately circulated devotional magazine. 

4 Probably The Hireling (1957)- 

265 



arrival soon. I have now got on to my new novel (after 
finishing a number of other literary chores) but work slowly 
and erratically without a serviceable writing hand. 1 I was glad 
that the American reviewers and public took so kindly to 
Trebizond. I am going to the Black Sea again in late August . . . 
on a cruise. I like being back at Mass again. I seldom am there 
without thoughts of you and love and gratitude. Now I must 
write, if I can, to Brother Paul; a short note only, and I think 
by surface mail. His letter to me began " Your old friend Fr 
Johnson has . . ." and for a moment my heart jolted in fear. 
But all was well. 2 

My love always, and take care of yourself. 

R.M. 



1 R. M.'s new novel Lad reached the stage of some rough notes and a 
roughly drafted first chapter before her death on soth October, 1958, aged 77. 

2 Fr Johnson survived R. M. for 2^ years. He died on I7th March, 1961.. 
aged 84* 

266 



Ind 



.ex 



Index 



AckerleyJ., 153-4 

Acquaintances (unnamed), R.M.'s: 
in Cyprus, 99; in Lebanon and 
Syria, 100 ; Irish girls, 106, 108, 
264; Christian Arab, 156; young 
German, 200 ; window-cleaner, 
222; an Oxonian, 255; "non- 
friends", 257; in Charing Cross 
Hospital, 264 

Acton, Lord, 132, 197 

Actors, 123 

Agar, Herbert, 151 

Age of Charles I, The (D. Mathew), 
86 

Agnosticism, 89, 125, 166; R.M. 
accused of, 197 

Agnostics, 89, 142-3, 172, 176, 179, 
211, 247, 256; former, 246-7 

American Prayer Book Commentary, 
see Oxford American Prayer Book 
Commentary 

Americanisms, 150, 167, 228 

Americans: 145; "immigrants", 43; 
and politics, 43, 146; and U.S. 
Presidential election (1952), 48; 
New Englanders, 114; U.S. Con 
sul in London, 149; and R.M.'s 
novels, 151, 249; "Colonial 
rebels", 158; in Istanbul, 161; 
writers, 182; as scholar's, 182-3 

Anathemata, Tlie (D.Jones), 195 

Ancren Riwle, The, 85-6 

Andre wes, Bp Lancelot, 107, 228 

Anglican Church, The: C.E.M. 
Joad on, 42; Sir L. Jenkins on, 
42; R.M. on, 42-3, 58, 139, 
181; Bp of Monmouth on, 52-3; 
variety of practice in, 53, 200, 205- 
6; religious orders in, 60; "Bible 
v. Church" in, 86; R.M.'s enthus 
iasm for, 99, in, 113, 128-9, 131, 
163, 195 ; ignored by novelists, 106; 
Prodigal Son analogy, 107, 108; 
in I9th c. ill, 119-20, 195; in 
1 7th c., 119, 183, 187-8; in 1 8th c., 
119; prayers for, 149; and Passion- 
tide, 152; gossip about, 172; and 
television time, 221 ; and women's 
lay ministry, 226 ; "Church Week " 
in Westminster area, 236; London 
"enquiry centre", 253 

Anglicanism: converts to, 42, 46, 47, 



79, 253 ; apologias for, 115-16, 118; 
Anglican Catholicism, 118-19, *4 
223 ; doctrinal teaching, 127, 128 ; 
American, 164; converts from, 
106, 166, 177, 205; revival in 
Engknd, 171; novels depicting, 
254; British Weekly on, 254 

Anglicans: "high but broad", 22; 
novelists, 32, 33, 42, 75, 172; 
apologias by, 42, 46; their free 
choice of prayers, 43 ; and R. A. 
Knox, 56; Archbishops, 56, 61; 
and Roman Catholic practice, 89; 
"through the centuries", 107; in 
I7th c., 119; in i8th c,, 119; High, 
140, 166; ordinands, 149; Bishops, 
176, 237; and Roman Catholics, 
203; Religious, 203; and "losing 
face", 206; and women as servers, 
215-16; priests, 219; missionaries, 
222-3; in torchlight procession, 
236-7 
See also Clergy, English 

Anglo-Catholic Faith, The (T. A. 
Lacey), 157, 165 

Anglo-Catholicism, 140, 171; in the 
U.S.A., 164, 169; I7thc., 164 

Anglo-Catholics, 106, 164, 205, 212, 
228 

Annan, Noel, 167 

Anson, Peter, 203 

Apostles' Creed, The, 151 

Apostolic Ministry, The (K. E. Kirk), 



Ararat, Mt, 176 

Aristotle, in, 177 

Arnold, Thomas, 117 

Articles, the Thirty-Nine, 78, 251, 

255, 260 

Ascham, Roger, 81 
Ashdown, H. E., Provost of South- 

wark, 196 

Ashley, Maurice, 90 
Ash Wednesday (T. S. Eliot), 75-6, 

195 

Athenaeum, the, 190 
Augustine, St, of Canterbury, 178 
Augustine, St, of Hippo, 30, 169, 177 
Autobiography and Life of George* 

Tyrrell (M. D. Petre), 105-6 



Babington, Thomas, 15311 



271 



Babington Smith, Constance, 22, 
238, 239, 243, 244, 258 

Bacon, Francis, 81, 125 

Baptism, 151 

Baptists, 154 

Barnabas, St, 99 

Barnes, Sir George, 221 

Bartholomew's Day, St, 87, 168 

Baxter, Richard, 215 

"Beasts, the Four", 214 

Beerbohm, Max, 193-4, 225 

Bell, Clive, 153 

Belloc, Elizabeth, 75 

Belloc, Hilaire, 75, 78, 80, 81, 86, 
no, 113 

Bennett, Arnold, 72 

Bennett, Arnold (R. Pound), 72 

Benson, Canon J., 197-8 

Benson, Rev. R. M., 60 

Beny, RolofF, 254n 

Berenson, Bernard, 255 

Bernard of Cluny, 259n 

Bernard, St, 220, 259 

Best-seller lists, 258 

Betjeman, John, 90, 145, 150, 151, 
153, 221, 229, 235, 246 

B.F.'s Daughter (J. Marquand), 146 

Bible, The, 86, 213 ; Revised Standard 
Version, 36-7; translation by R. A. 
Knox, 39, 52, 1 88, 214, 233, 236; 
the Gospels, 39, 63, 65, 96, 117; 
Vulgate, 52, 1 88, 214; Erasmus* 
translation (Latin), 79; English 
Bible, The (G. C. Macaulay)-, 79, 
84; Wycliffe's translation, 81; 
Douai translation, 81 ; New English 
Bible, 84, 214; Four Gospels, The 
(trans. E. V. Rieu), 85 ; New Testa 
ment, 96, 117; Old Testament, no, 
214; Leviticus, in; Wisdom, 170, 
214; Ecclesiasticus, 175, 214; St 
Paul's Epistles, 182, 236; Author 
ised Version, 1 88; Revised Version, 
1 88; Greek Testament, 188, 214; 
Hebrew sources, i88n, 214; Revel 
ation, 214 
See also Psalms, The 

Birth control, 32, 37 

Black Sea, the, 147, 149, 150, 154, 
155-6, 159, 266 

Bonham Carter, Mark, 115, n 6, 144, 
219, 238, 246 

Bonham Carter, Sir Maurice, 116 

Bonham Carter, Lady Violet, 115, 
116, 191, 219 



Bouyer, Louis, 221 

Bowen, Elizabeth, 194 

Bowen, Marjorie, 179-80 

Bowra, Sir Maurice, 224 

Braybrooke, Neville, 248n 

British Broadcasting Corporation: 
"The Critics", 34-5, 4L 46, 47, 48, 
50, 189-90, 192, 195-6; talks, 4611, 
50, 53, 109, in; discussions, 51; 
Coronation broadcast to Cyprus, 
99; review of Pleasure of Ruins ; 
125; televising of Roman Mass, 
140-1; news, 197, 207; "Letter 
from America", 208; Central 
Religious Advisory Committee, 
221 ; "Lift up your Hearts ", 246 

British Weekly, 253-4 

Brittain, F., 221 

Broadcasting, by R. M., 34-5, 41, 46, 
50, 189-90, 192, 195-6 

Bronte, Charlotte, 44 

Brooke, Rupert, 15, 16, 33, 77 

Brooks, Phillips, Bp of Massachu 
setts, 197 

Brown, C. K. Francis, 139 

Browne, Bertha L., 226 

Browning, Robert, 50-1 

Buddha, 109 

Butler, J. R. M., 263 

Butlin's Camp, see Holidays, R.M.'s 

Cambridge: 16, 40, 140, 199, 223, 
23 8 ; R. M. weekend at, 202 

Cambridge Inter-Collegiate Chris 
tian Union, 206, 211, 255 

Cambridge University, 16, 246, 255, 
263; hon. degree awarded to 
R. M., 16; G. C. Macaulay lecture 
ship at, 16; King's College Chapel, 
117; King's College, 117, 202; 
religious revival in, 171, 211; Eng. 
Lit. students at, 220; undergradu 
ates of, 171, 206, 223, 237, 239, 
255; Pembroke College, 223 

Cambridgeshire, 44 

Candles, 76, 118; the Paschal Candle, 
30, 32n, 170; Blessing of, 91, 94, 
169, 170 

Capernaum, 102 

Caraman, Rev. Philip, 147, 223 

Cardinal Gasquet (Shane Leslie), 132 

Carpenter, Rev. S. C., 157 

Gary, Rev. H. L. M. (Lucius), 17, 116 

Gary, Joyce, 141, 143 

Cassirer, E., 152 



272 



Catholic Encyclopaedia, The, 34, 39 

Catholic Mind, The (journal), 51 

Catholic Movement in the Church of 
England, The (W. Knox), 223 

Catholic Truth Society, 126 

Catholicism: English (pre-Reforma- 
tion), 74, 77-8, 82, 85-6, 92; 
Western, 103; and approach to 
Faith, 187; compared to Evangel 
icalism, 190 

See also Anglo-Catholicism, Roman 
Catholicism 

Cavendish, Lady Elizabeth, 246 

Cecil, Lord David, 203 

Celibacy, 37 

Chadwick, Dr Owen, 237 

"Chantry-Pigg, Fr Hugh** (The 
Towers of Trebizond), 22-3, 230n, 
231, 232, 239, 247 

Chapman, Dr R. W., 57 

Character, human, 83, 195 

Charing Cross Hospital, 264 

Charles I, King, 143 

Chaucer, Geoffrey, 85 

Chesterton, G. K., 147, 179 

Children: religious services for, 119, 
121-2, 130, 132, 137; religious 
teaching for, 126-7, 129, 130, 
137-8, 140; and poetry, 128 

Chillingworth, William, 1 8 8, 215 

Christ, 122, 214, 216, 236, 253; the 
indwelling, 36, 40, 49, 63, 112, 152; 
as Saviour, 49, 98, 1 12 ; His corning, 
5<5, 59 257-8; as light, 71, 112, 149, 
233; and Western Catholicism, 
103; and the Church, 105; belief 
in, in, 180; as Love, 112; 
Divinity of, 151; His Passion, 152; 
His death, 152, 187 

Christianity: and other religions, 32, 

99, 109, 215; "Eastern origins of", 

103, 215, 216; instruction in, 117, 

130; and order of universe, 142, 

144-5; conversion to, 154, 156-?; 

in England in 6th c., 178; poetry 

of, 182; "complex of ideas", 215 

Fasts: Ash Wednesday, 83, 9in; 

Ember Days, 234n; Lent, 83, 89, 

149 

Feasts: All Saints' Day, 44, 45, 117, 
1 1 8, 119, 175; Ascension Day, 
96; Candlemas, 76; Christmas, 
20, 56, 57, 60, 62, 66, 130, 131, 
132, 137, 181, 189, 260; Con 
ception of the B.V.M., 58, 130; 



Corpus Christi, 19, 200-1, 2Oin, 
225-6; Easter, 89, 91 ; Epiphany, 
71 ; Finding of the Holy Cross, 
45n; Palm Sunday, 83, 91; 
Pentecost, 96, 99, 156, 225; Trin 
ity Sunday, 225; 25th Sunday 
after Trinity ( "Stir-up Sunday w ), 

53 

Sacraments: 78, 254 
See also Baptism; Holy Com 
munion; and Confession 
Vigils: of the Conception of the 
B.V.M., 214 

Christianity at the Cross-Roads (G. 
Tyrrell), 149 

"Christian Action ", 244 

Christians and Communism (H. 
Johnson), 276 

Christmas Cards, R.M.'s: 265; 1952, 
57, 60, 64-5 ; 1953, 127, 129; 1954, 
180; 1956, 243; 1957, 258, 260, 
263 

Church in England, The (S. C. 
Carpenter), 157, 158, 164 

Churches: Greek, 96; in Cyprus, 99; 
Byzantine, 99, 100; in Jerusalem, 
101; Santa Sophia (Istanbul), 156, 
1 60; earliest Christian Church 
(Antioch), 1 60 

Anglican: country, 42, 109; "very 
Romanizing", 58, 130; "High", 
67, 169, 231; abroad, 96; in 
Cyprus, 99; near Westfield Park 
Hotel, Ryde, 106; "dull and un 
satisfying", 1 08; "musty smell" 
of, 108-9; "Sunday-matins", 129, 
131-2; in New York, 164; beauty 
in, 1 66, 169; and ritual, 169; at 
Butlin's Camp, Skegness, 208-9; 
at Yaxley, Hunts, 209; "Anglo- 
Catholic", 231; in Venice, 252; 
at Hodnet, 265 

All Saints', Margaret St, 30, 83, 91* 
133, 228, 231, 243, 244; All Saints', 
Notting Hill, 79; The Annuncia 
tion, Bryanston St, 200, 222, 231, 

243 

Grosvenor Chapel, 30, 55, 62, 83, 
92, 101, 129, 133, 171, 179, 232; 
R.M.'s attachment to, 19, 88, 91, 
174, 181; R.M/s attendance at, 22, 
3on, 44, 51, 117, 173-4. 175. 182, 
190, 200, 223, 243, 258, 263; 
Requiem Mass for R.M. at, 24; 
occasional members of congrega- 



273 



tion, 33, 79, 115, 116; Lady 
Chapel at, 52; stoves in, 61 ; closed, 
77, 104, 228 ; noticeboard defaced, 
78; blessing of palms at, 83, 91; 
R.M.'s absence from, 96, 196; 
worshippers, 172 

The Holy Angels, Cranford, 72, 73 ; 
Holy Trinity, Clapham Common, 
198; St Barnabas*, Addison Rd, 
119; St Barnabas', Oxford, 171; 
St Bene't's, Cambridge, 171; St 
Cyprian's, Clarence Gate, 94; St 
Dunstan's, Cranford, 72, 73n; St 
Magnus the Martyr's, 231; St 
Margaret's, Westminster, 105; St 
Martin-in-the-Fields, 264; St 
Mary's, Graham St, 231; St 
Mary-the-Less, Cambridge, 171 ; 
St Mary Abbots, 22, 121-2, 137; 
St Mary Aldermary, 150, 169; 
St Mary Magdalen's, Oxford, 171; 
St Matthew's, Westminster, 231; 
St Paul's Cathedral, 66, 67, 73, 139, 
200; St Paul's, Portman Square, 
243 

St Paul's, Knightsbridge, 167, 169, 
181, 192, 200, 21511, 225, 251; 
R.M.'s affection for, 22; R.M.'s 
attendance at, 22, 171-2, 174, 175, 
190, 192, 196, 207, 219, 223, 238, 
243; "Open House" at Vicarage, 
176; Eucharist broadcast from, 
182; Lent programmes, 195, 221; 
choir, 221; "Church Week" ad 
dresses at, 237 

St Stephen's, Gloucester Rd, 141; 
St Stephen's, Rochester Row, 236; 
St Thomas', Regent St, 51, 53, 
58; Westminster Abbey, 66, 200, 
236, 256 

Nonconformist, 21; Whitefield Mem 
orial Church, 264 

Roman Catholic: Brompton Oratory, 
62; Our Lady of Mount Carmel, 
Kensington, 118, 122; in Cam 
bridge, Mass., 130; St James', 
Spanish Place, 130, 243 ; in Varazze, 
137; St Mark's, Venice, 252; in 
Venice, 252 

Churchill, Randolph, 197 

Churchill, Sir Winston, 196-7 

Church in the Markets, The (B. Ifor 
Evans), 30 

Church Times, 29, 42, 46-7, 52, 55, 
77, 144, 223, 229, 253 



Cicero, 62 

Clapham Sect, the, 108 

Clarke, Rev. E. A. L., 82 

Clergy, English: R.M.'s acquain 
tance among, 22, 51, 147, 255, 
259; fasting mass-priests, 89; in 
i8th c., 107, 119; in I7th c., 107, 
119; in I9th c., in, 119-20; 
G. K. Chesterton on, 147; in 
Cambridge, 171; "rather prole 
tarian", 175; at Butlin's Camp, 
205, 208, 210; "earthen vessels", 
237, 247; hospital chaplains, 264 

Clothes* children's, 40; "Cambridge 
dowdiness", 40; oldest, 76; appeal 
for, 80; for Middle East, 96; un 
comfortable, 250 

Coasts of the Country, The, (ed. C. 
Kirchberger), 61 

Cockin, F. A., Bp of Bristol, 87, 22in 

Cocteau, Jean, 25 5n 

Colchis, 161 

Coleridge, S. T., 36 

Colet,John, 113 

Collects, see Prayers: Collects 

Collins, Canon L. John, 92, 244 

Collins, William, publishers, 144, 219 

Commandments, the Ten, 156, 243; 
the 7th, 153 

Common Prayer, The Book of, 119, 
138, 143, 156, 177, 250; of 1552, 
39, 235; Exhortations to Holy 
Communion, 65 ; American Prayer 
Book, 65, 250; and Abp Cranmer, 
65, 78, 231, 235; and translations, 
795 of 1549, 81, 235, 251; Cate 
chism in, 122, 128 ; Wesleyans and, 
174; Prayer of Oblation in, 182, 
231, 235, 236; revision of 1928, 
200-1, 20in; Scottish Prayer Book, 
250; of 1662, 25on 

Commonweal, The (journal), 35 

Communists, 146 

Community of the Resurrection, 
222-3 

Compton-Burnett, Ivy, 194, 249 

Confession, 67, 150, 223; R.M. and, 
16, 17, 62, 181, 192, 195 

Confidential Clerk, The (T. S. Eliot), 
115 

Confucius, 109 

Connolly, Cyril, 125 

Constantinople, 23, 154, 156, 159, 
1 60 

Constanza, i<5m 



274 



Conybeare, family of, 21, 43, 119, 

201; clergy, 14, 192-3 
Conybeare, Dorothea, 16, 40, 140 
Conybeare, Eliza (ne'e Rose), 90, 117 
Conybeare, John, Bp of Bristol, 14, 

192, 193 

Conybeare, John Bruce, 121 
Conybeare, Rev. John J., 193 
Conybeare, Rev. J. W. Edward, 192, 

193 

Conybeare, Olive, 29 
Conybeare, Rev. "W. J., 14, 117, 236 
Conybeare, W. James, Provost of 

Southwell, 29, 192-3, 201 
Cooke, Alistair, 208 
Corbet, Richard, Bp of Oxford and 

Norwich, 117 
Cornelius a Lapide, 64n, 65 
Cornerstone, The (Z. Oldenbourg), 

177 

Cornford, Frances (nte Darwin), 14-0 
Coronation, of Queen Elizabeth II, 

61, 99; wording of Oath, 52; 

expense of, 56; preparations for, 

66; and Roman Mass, 141 
Cosin, Bp John, 60 
Cosmology, 212, 213 
Coulton, G. G., 132 
Cousins (unnamed): R.M.'s, 16, 140, 

237; Grace Macaulay's, 117 
Coverdale, Miles, 124 
Cowley Fathers, see Society of St 

John the Evangelist 
Cowper, William, 203 
Cranmer, Abp Thomas, 33, 65-6, 

78, 83, 98, 124-5, 231, 235, 236; 

Cranmer (H. Belloc), 78, 80 
Crashaw, Richard (A. Warren), 257 
Cromwell, Oliver, 82, 83, 164 
Cruelty: throughout history, 53, 82, 

109; of crusaders, 87; in Africa, 

92, no; "in the name of the 

Church", 84, 85, 189, 212; during 

the Reformation, 125; in I7th c. 

England, 188; human beings and, 

244-5 

Crusades, the, 87 
Culpan, Norman, 220 
Cycling, 33, 190, 192, 198 
Cyprus: hymn on, 66, 105; political 

situation in (1956), 224 

See also Holidays, R.M.'s; Travel, 

R.M. and 



Daily Express, 133, 142 



Daily Telegraph, 130, 229 

Daniel, Samuel, 117, 120-5 pass.' 

Complete Works in Verse and Prose, 

I22n 

Dante, 177 

Darwin, family of, 40, no, 140, 143 
Darwin, Charles, 142 
Darwin, Maud (nie Du Puy), 40, 140 
Davey, Rev. L. W., 31 
Dawson, Christopher, 57, 103, 107 
Death, 59, 65, 66 
De Contempts Mundi (Bernard of 

Cluny), 259 
Defence of Revealed Religion (J. 

Conybeare), 192 
Denis, Fr, S.S.F., 263 
Derry, Rev. W. R., 203-4 
Dialogues of Alfred North Whitehead, 

as recorded by L. Price, 182 
Dictionaries: CasselTs (Latin), 36, 

146; The Oxford Dictionary, 113, 

122, 152, 234, 250 
Dix, Dom Gregory, 29 
Dodd, Rev. C. H., 117 
Don, A. C., Dean of Westminster, 

256 

Donne, John, 139, 228 
Downe House School, 33 
Dray ton, Michael, 124 
Drugs: penicillin, 112; M. & B., 112 
Dryden, John, 81 
Duckett, booksellers, 29, 33, 34, 88, 

92 

DufF, Lady Juliet, 265 
Dunbar, William, 59n, 231 

Early Victorian England, ed. G. M. 
Young, 194-5 

Eden, Sir Anthony, 244 

Edwardian Youth, An (L. E. Jones), 
229 

Eisenhower, President Dwight D., 
48, 208 

Eleanor (Mrs H. Ward), 207, 225 

Eliot, George, 158 

Eliot, T. S., 75, 115, 141, 195, 248; 
Symposium for his Seventieth Birth 
day, ed. N. Braybrooke, 248 

Elizabeth II, H.M. Queen, 56, 158, 
197, 246, 263 

Elizabethan Recusant Prose (A. 
Southern), 80-1, 83 

Elliott, Claude, 263n 

Ember Weeks, 149 

Encyclopaedia Britannica, 170 



275 



England, Church of, see Anglican 

Church 
England in the Seventeenth Century 

(M. Ashley), 90 

English, the: Protestant bias of, 84; 
and colonization of New England, 
182; in iyth c., 188; during Civil 
War, 188-9 

English Church from the Accession of 
Ceorge I to the End of the Eighteenth 
Century, The (J. Overton & F. 
Relton), 192, 193 

English language: compared to 
Latin, 31, 45; changes in, 79; early 
Middle English, 86; I5th c., 125 

English literature: in Tudor period, 
80-1, 124-5 

English People on the Eve of Coloniza 
tion, The (W. Notestein), 182-3, 
188 

English Pulpit Oratory from Andrewes 
to Tillotson (W. Fraser Mitchell), 
228 

Episcopalians, The (D. D. Addison), 
170 

Erasmus, 6 1, 62, 79, 113, 128 

Eton College, 14, 167, 229 

Eucharist, The: R.M.'s devotion to, 
19, 128, 138, 180, 187, 225; R.M.'s 
attendance, 19, 43 44, 52, 53, 55, 
58, 83, 115, H3, 190, 192, 207, 
219, 223, 243, 246, 263, 266; Re 
quiem Masses, 30, 31, 48, 76, 79, 
119, 179; Midnight Masses, 56, 
62, 66, 73, 9i, 92, 132, 133, 137, 
1 8 1, 216; for the Epiphany, 71; 
R.M.'s prayers at, 75, 211, 236; 
R.M.'s daily attendance, 75, 96, 
104, 168, 171, 174, 195, 197, 208, 
211, 247, 258; evening celebra 
tions, 88-9, 200; R.M.'s absence 
from, 101 ; as in the Prayer Book, 
101, (1549) 251; daily celebration, 
101, 106, 208, 232; broadcasts of, 
141, 182; noon celebrations, 173; 
at Butlin's Camps, 205, 208-9, 210; 
televising of, 221 

Evangelicals, 108, 187, 198, 213 

Evelyn, John, 67, 143 

Everlasting Man, Tlie (G. K. Ches 
terton), 179 

Evidence in Camera (C. Babington 
Smith), 244, 258 

Except the Lord (J. Cary), 141, I43n 

Ezekiel, 100 



Faber Book of Children's Verse, The, 

ed. J. Adam Smith, 128 
Faber, Geoffrey, 202 
Faith, Christian: approaches to, 16, 

1 8, 117, 138, 187; "mystery of", 

91; "central point of", 111-12; 

R.M. and, 112, 180-1 
Faith of the Millions, The (G. Tyrrell), 

1 06, 109 

Falkland, 2nd Viscount, 1 88 

Famagusta, 97, 98-9 

Farrar, Straus, & Cudahy, publishers, 
232, 234 

Fathers of the Western Churchy The 
(R. Payne), 37 

Ferguson, family of, 119-20 

Festivals: Hallowe'en, 45; New 
Year's Eve, 66, 67, 139; Shrove 
Tuesday, 9in, 147, 191-2; Oyster 
Day, 114; "old St James' Day", 
114; St Valentine's Day, 248 

Fielding, Henry, 44, 96 

Fisher, Geoffrey, Abp of Canterbury, 
221, 253 

FitzGerald, Desmond, 46 

Five Stages of Greek Religion (G. 
Murray), 2i4n 

Flats, R.M.'s: bombing of Lux- 
borough House flat, 18, 107; 
at Hinde House, 19, 61 ; untidiness 
of, 46, in, 137, 265; fire at, 102, 

107, 114; repairs to, 102, 104, 105, 
109, in, 114; burglary at, 147-8 

Floods, 80, 176 

Florio,John, 124-5 

Folly Farm (C. E. M. Joad), 59n, 

145, 151 

Four Quartets (T. S. Eliot), 195 
Forster, E. M., 18, 142-3, 211, 237 
Fountain Overflows, The (R. West), 

255 

Foxe, John, 82; "Book of Martyrs n , 
81-2, 8411, 85 

Friends (unnamed): 

R.M.'s: 62, 114, 139, 144, 162, 221, 
264; her "beloved companion", 
17, 18, 233; Anglicans, 22, 64, 
88; her" doctor, 24; young men, 
33; ex-pupils of Downe House 
School, 33; Roman Catholic, 
40-1, 62, 88, 92, 205-6, 252-3; 
at Hampstead, 66, 137; givers of 
Middle East introductions, 95; 
Jewish, 156; novelists, 158; hus 
band, wife and mistress, 158; 



276 



English friends in Turkey, 159; 
Portuguese friend, 163; trusted 
friend, 168; circle of near friends, 
195; Fellows of King's College, 
Cambridge, 202; admirer of E. M. 
Forster, 211; lacking television 
sets, 222; re-married friend, 230; 
religious agnostic, 230; intending 
Anglican, 234-5; an old friend, 
237-8; suffering from Asian 
influenza, 257 

Fr Johnson's: "younger Ameri 
cans", 33; "that Prior", 38; 
B , 58, 114-15; Harvard under 
graduate, 77-8; "that Father", 
137; Roumanian bookseller, 161, 
162, 164 
Frost, Bede, 229 
Fuller, Thomas, 72, 7311, 123 
Fundamentalism, 151, 206 
Furneaux Jordan, R., 119-20 
Further Journey, The (R. Murray), 
89 

Galilee, 93, 96, 101, 102 

Galileo, 211 

Gardiner, Rev. H. C., 144 

Gasquet, Cardinal, 132 

Geology, 212, 213 

George V (H. Nicolson), 30 

Gibbon, Edward, 196 

Glastonbury Romance, A (J. C. 
Powys), 212 

Go-Between, The (L. P. Hartley), 144, 
225, 227, 228 

God: and men, 77, 181, 214-15; 
diversity of influence, 86, 154; 
belief in, 142, 1 80; and the "God- 
shaped hole", 143; and the uni 
verse, 145; wisdom of, 170; 
seeking of man by, 215; the 
Trinity, 225; separation from, 230; 
the Father, 239; Judgment of, 257-8 

God-children, R.M.'s, See O'Dono- 
van, Mary Anne; and Smith, 
Emily 

Golden Grove, The, (J. Taylor), 67 

Golden String, The (B. Griffiths), 

175-6. 177-8 
Gollancz, Victor, 57-8 
Good Behaviour (H. Nicolson), 215 
Good Pagan's Failure, The (R. 

Murray), 89 
Gore, Charles, 34, 3 8, 52; Life 

(G. L. Prestige), 201 



Grace, 59, 236; enlightening, 89-90 

Graham, Dr W. (Billy), 120, 149-57 
pass., 199; mission to Cambridge, 
206, 211 

Great Heresies, Tlie (H. Belloc), 80 

Great O's, the, see Liturgies: the 
Greater Antiphons 

Great Prayer, The (H. Ross William 
son), 190-1 

Great Rebellion, The (C. V. Wedg 
wood), 183, 188 

Greene, Graham, 94, 123 

Gregory I (the Great), Pope, 34, 

38-9 

Gregory XHI, Pope, 87 
Griffiths, Rev. Bede, 175-6, 177-8 
Grosvenor Chapel, see Churches: 

Anglican 

Gunpowder Plot, the, 51, 231 
Gunpowder Plot, T7*e (H. Ross 

Williamson), 23 2n 

Hadrian, Memoirs of (M. Yourcenar), 

203 

Hakluyt, Richard, 81, 124-5 
Hall, G. N. L., Bp of Chota Nagpur, 

3i, 38, 43 
Handwriting: R.M/s, 40, 49, 71, 88, 

1 1 6, 145; Fr Johnson's, 145 
Hanlon, Rev. F., 159 
Hanshell, H. D., 7in 
Hardy, Thomas, 96 
Harris, Rev. D. B., 215, 221, 260 
Hartley, L. P., 144, 225, 228, 265 
Hearne, Thomas, 193 
Heart of Jesus, The (P. N. Waggett), 

226 

Heaven, 59, 65, 127, 153 
Heliocentric system, belief in, 211-12 
Hell, 61, 127; fear of, 59, 63, 65, 66, 

234, 236 

Hemerobaptists, 6411 
Henderson, E. B. (Jock), Bp of 

Tewkesbury, 22, 175, 176, 182, 

192-200 pass., 210 
Herbert, George, 24, 107 
Here's a Church Let's Go in (W. J. 

Conybeare), 193 
Hichens, Jacobine, 30, 32-3, i?2 
Hidden Stream, The (R. A. Knox), 

55,56 

Hilton, Walter, 85 
Hireling, The (L. P. Hartley), 265 
Historic Jesus, The (J. MacKinnon), 
220 



277 



History of Christian-Latin Poetry 

(F.J. E. Raby), 130 
History of the Crusades (S. Runciman), 

87, 132 

History of the English Clergy, 1800- 
1900 (C. K. Francis Brown), 139 

Holidays, R.M.'s: Isle of Wight, 20, 
104-10 pass., 165-6; Cyprus and 
Middle East (1953), 21, 61, 66, 75, 

88, 93-103 paw.; Turkey (1954). 
21 ; Black Sea Cruise (i95$)> 23, 
266; and religious life, 96; invita 
tion to Jamaica, 189; Butlin's Camp 
at Skegness, 199, 205, 208-9; plans 
for Aegean trip (1956), 224. See 
also Travel, R.M. and 

Holland, Philemon, 124-5 

Hollis, Christopher, 234, 237 

Holy Communion: R.M. and, 19, 
174, 252, (in hospital) 264; sick 
room (Dr Joad), 59, 90; evening, 
88; at Easter, 91; refusal of, 94; 
"Thanksgiving for" (in 1928 
Prayer Book), 20in; God's Judg 
ment and, 258 

Holy Spirit, The, 90, 104, 170, 180, 
225 

Home for the Holidays (W. Peck), 212 

Hood, Canon Frederic, 52, 53, 60, 
104, 145, 150, 169, 171, 172, 173 

Hooker, Richard, 36, 81, 107, 124-5 

Horace, 113 

Huddleston, Rev. T., 222, 244 

Hiigel, Baron Friedrich von, 106, 
142, 197 

Hugh, St, of Lincoln, 122 

Hundred Best Latin Hymns, The, 
selected byj. S, Phillimore, 167, 259 

Hurricanes (in U.S.A.), 170, 171. 
174, 207, 208, 210 

Huxley, Aldous, 255, 257 

Huxley, Julian, 247, 263 

Hymns: on Cyprus, 66; vulgar, 154; 
English: "King of Glory, King of 
Peace ", 24-5 ; "Disposer Supreme ", 
162, 166-7; "Jerusalem the 
Golden", 259n; Latin: 152, 259; 
the Te Deum, 36; Vexilla Regis 
prodeunt, I52n; Pange Lingua, i52n 

Ideas and Places (C. Connolly), 125 
Iddesleigh, Elizabeth (Countess of), 

no 

Idylls of the King (Tennyson), 86 
Illnesses: R.M.'s: 18, 21; undulant 



fever, 21, 29, 31. 38, 4L 49, 61; 

last illness, 24; colds, 40, 41, 54; 

influenza, 88, 90, 91, 213, 219, 223, 

249, (inoculations against) 257; 

pleurisy, 112; in Turkey, 159; 

bronchitis, 213, 216, 219; coughs, 

219; "fluemonia", 263 

Fr Johnson's, 126, 198, 200, 243 
i/ Penseroso (J. Milton), 36 
Infallible Fallacies, 115-16, 118, 126 
Inge, William, 167 
Inge, W- R - Dean of St Paul ' s I<5 7 
Inquisition, the, 84, 108, 211 
Intellectual Aristocracy, The (N. 

Annan), 167 

Intercommunion, 21, 96, 174, 210 
Interpretation of the Fourth Gospel, The 

(C. H.Dodd), 117 
Irish, the, 35, 43-4 
Irvine, Rev. Gerard, 51, 53, 58-9, 

72-3, 145, 172, 220-1, 247 
Irvine, James, 172 
Isaiah, 100 
Istanbul, 23, 154, 156, 159, 160 

James, St, 114, 224 

Jane Eyre (C. Bronte), 44 

Jenkins, Sir Leoliiie, 42, 47, 48 

Jerome, St, 37, 224 

Jerusalem, 87, 96, 100-1, 102, 144 

Jerusalem Journey (H. F. M. Prescott), 
144 

Jews, the, 32, 156, 170, 182 

Joad, C. E. M., 41, 42, 45-6, 59, 90, 
145 

John, St, 214, 224 

John Inglesant (J. H. Shorthouse), 143 

Johnson, family of, 17, 209 

Johnson, Catharine B. ("Aunt 
Katie"), 90 

Johnson, Dr Hewlett, Dean of 
Canterbury, 236 

Johnson, Rev. John Barham, 203 

Johnson, Rev. John Hamilton Cow- 
per: cousinship with R.M., 14, 
19, 173 ; ministry to R.M. (before 
1916), 16-17, 7i> 2 58 ; and Norfolk, 
33, 228; ordination, 17; joined 
S.S.J.E., 17, 225; transferred to 
U.S.A., 17; and his penitents, 17, 
37, 47, 75, 139, 150, 167, 236; and 
R.M.'s novels, 18 (See also Mac- 
aulay, Rose, Books by); tastes, 18; 
R.M.'s gratitude to, 19, 49, 129, 
131, 133, 139, 154, 157, 169, 183, 



2 7 8 



204, 210-n, 213, 2i6, 2(56; and 
book-binding, 43, 83, 191, 259, 
260; and "air papers", 44; as 
Latinist, 45, 249; and "little some 
thing", 66; R.^/s prayers for, 67; 
prayers for R.M., 93, 200, 223; 
ancestors, 107, 2^3; his cell, in, 
265; and Anglican Church, 113, 
128, 129, 131, 139; and poetry, 128, 
203; and R.C. Church, 131, 139; 
upbringing, 140; birthdays, 157, 
158, 199, 224, 265; and other 
priests, 173 ; health, 265; and 
shortened habit, 265; death, 266n 

Johnson, Kenneth Cowper, 94 

Johnson, Dr Samuel, 63 

Johnson, Rev. William Cowper (Fr 
Johnson's father), 89 

Johnson, Rev. "William Cowper (Fr 
Johnson's grandfather), 203 

Jones, David, 195 

Jones, L. E., 229 

Jonson, Ben, 124 

Joseph, St, 214 

Julian of Norwich, 85 

Justification by Faith, 30 

Kempe, Margery, 84 

Kensit, John, 25 in 

King's Peace, The (C. V. Wedgwood) 

183, 188 

Kinross, Lord, 239 
Kinsey, A. C., 109 
Kirchberger, Clare, 61 
Kirk, K. E., Bp of Oxford, i<55n, 

264-5 

Kirk, Peter, 264-5 
Knevet, Lady, 81 
Knox, Dillwyn, 212, 223 
Knox, E. A., Bp of Manchester, 212 
Knox, E. V., 64-5, 212, 223 
Knox, Mgr R. A., 39, 55-6, 188, 212, 

223 

Knox, Rev. Wilfred, 212, 223 
Koestler, Arthur, 62 
Koran, The, 156 
Kyrenia, 98, 99 

Lacey, T. A., 15?, ^5 
Lacey May, G., 215 
Lacordaire, H. D., 132 
Lamb, Charles, 36, 40 
Lambeth Palace, 56 
Lamennais, F. R. de, 151 
Langland, William, 85 



Larimer, Hugh, 81, 125 

Latin in Church (F. Brittain), 221 

Latin language, 122, 146, 234; and 
1 3th c. women, 86; and English 
girls, 86; rhymes, 167 

Laud, Abp W., 60, 188-9 

"Laurie" (The Towers of Trebizond), 
23, 219, 225, 227, 247; sex of, 232; 
her prose style, 232; her exper 
iences parallel to R.M.'s, 233, 238, 
239; eventual return to the Church, 
233; C. Hollis on, 237 

Law, William, 60, 119, 215; on the 
indwelling Christ, 40, 49, 63, 98; 
R.M.'s appreciation of, 44, 49, 98 ; 
Fr Johnson on, 98; Selected Mystical 
Writings (ed. S. Hobhouse), 40; 
Pocket William Law (ed. A. W. 
Hopkinson), 40, 44, 49, 54, 57 

Lawrence, D. H., 257 

Lecky, William E. H., in 

Leslie, Shane, 132 

Letters: between R. M. and Fr 
Johnson, 13-14, 17, 18, 19, 21, 22, 
23, 71, 9i, 93, 117, 152, 166, 227, 
236, 245; R.M/S to Fr Johnson 
"not worth preserving", in; Fr 
Johnson's "ministry of letters", 
210-11, 213 

between R.M. and Jean Macaulay, 
13, 20, 88, 94; writing of, 19, 49, 
52, 74-5, 83, 85, 204, 220, 254; 
from Coleridge to Lamb, 3611; on 
Eleanor Macaulay, 38; from 
Roman Catholics to R.M., 47, 
48-9, 209; on reactions to Gun 
powder Plot, 51; of Erasmus, 61; 
to authors on their books, 75, 141, 
202-3, 230, 234, 237-8; to The 
Times, 92, 206; of J. H. Newman, 
103; unanswered, 104, 107, 229, 
245, 248, 259; to The Listener, 
119-20; of Lord Acton, 132; the 
Paston, 155; of St Paul, 182; to 
The Tablet, 203, 206, 260; to the 
Church Times, 223; to The Ob 
server, 265 

Letters to a Friend (R- Macaulay), 
13-14, 18 

Letters to a Layman, see Question of 
Anglican Orders, The 

Lewis, C. S., 37i 40, 44 237, 239 

Ley, David, 168 

Liddon House, 2O3n, 204 

Life and Epistles of St Paul (W. J. 



279 



Conybeare and J. S. Howson), 
236 

light: "the Light that lighteth every 
man", 20, 32, 49, 71, 93, 99, 109, 
152, 187; lights in religious cere 
monial, 30, 32, 118; as subject of 
prayer, 75, 76, 93, 129, 155, 234; 
"of the gods 1 *, 214-15; of the 
Gospel of Christ, 233 

Listener, The, 119, 145, 146, 153 

Lister, Susan, 22, 237 

Little Gidding, 60, 119 

Liturgies : the Greater Antiphons, 20, 
52, 76, 129, 133, 180, 181, 235, 258, 
263; Easter Eve ceremonies, 29, 

30, 91, 94; the Exultet, 30, 32, 168, 
169; Anglican, 42, 47, 48, 130; 
"Watch-night services", 66, 67; 
development of, 67; Benedictions, 
74, 1 80; memorial services, 77, 256; 
Vespers, 79, 252; said inaudibly, 
91; in Latin, 96; Orthodox, 99, 
127; marriage services, 105; 
Roman Catholic, 113, 129, 131, 
140; funerals, 179, 201; Three 
Hours* Service, 198; for Corpus 
Christi, 200-1; "Gospels for the 
Day", 214; of Church of South 
India, 221 

Living Room, The (G. Greene), 94-5, 

123 

Lloyd, Canon Roger, 179 
Logos, the, 80, 1 88 
London Library, the, 57, 106, 109, 

in, 120, 155, 157, 162, 165, 190, 

223 

London Magazine, The, 247 
Long, Gabrielle M. V., 179-80 
Longmans, publishers, 147 
Lord M (Lord D. Cecil), 203 
Lothian, Fr, S.S.F., 237 
Lowndes, Mrs Belloc, no 
Macaulay, family of, 14, 15-16, 20, 

43, 201; clergy, 119; Evangelicals, 

198, 213; RJM/s uncles, 265 
Macaulay, Aulay, 15, 1 6 
Macaulay, Rev. Aulay, 14 
Macaulay, Eleanor, 15, 20, 29, 30, 

31, 38, 43, 48 

Macaulay, George Campbell, 14, 15, 
16, 17, 20, 79, 84, 86, 114, 147, 
265 

Macaulay, Grace Mary (ne'e Cony 
beare), 14, 15, 17, 20, 33, 137, 138, 
140, 214, 236 

280 



Macaulay, Jean: letters from R.M. 
to, 13; birth, 15, 20; childhood, 
15, 76, 127; R.M.'s visits to, 20, 54, 
56, 62, 66, 132, 137, 181, 216; and 
religion, 20, 117; and District 
Nursing, 20, 54, 244; awarded 
M.B.E., 20; retirement, 20, 244; 
holidays with R.M., 20, 104, 107, 
165, 166; tastes shared with R.M., 
21, 63; and R.M/s illnesses, 21; 
illnesses, 54, 90; overwork, 54, 61; 
on new housing estate residents, 
66; on Bp of Bristol, 87; and her 
"catechumen", 117, 151; reading, 
162, 226; eye trouble, 181, 228; 
patients, 222; and R.M.'s death, 
223 ; finances, 244; advice to R.M., 
259 

Macaulay, Margaret, 14, 18, i27n 

Macaulay, Mary, 20, 47, 79 

Macaulay, R. H., 15, 167 

Macaulay, Rose: death, 13, 24, 
266n; happiness of her last years, 

13, 49, 211 ; return to Church, 13, 
19, 20, 139, 140, 164, 181, 211, 213; 
estrangement from Church, 13, 
17, 19, 20, 21, 107, 117, 121, 143, 
195, 230, 233, 234; and family 
relationships, 13, 15, 76; ancestors 
(clerical), 14, 107, 119, 132; birth, 

14, 20; naming of, 14; cousinship 
with Fr Johnson, 14; education, 

15, 226; childhood in Italy, 15, 76, 
92, 127, 140, 161; shyness, 15, 16; 
confirmation, 15; religious educa 
tion, 15, 127, 137, 138, 143; at 
Great Shelford and Cambridge, 16, 
40, 116, 140, 223; at Somerville 
College, 16, 140, 250; literary 
reputation, 16, 17-18, 194, 220, 
249; and 1 7th c., 1 6, 24; and High 
Church practice, 16; war work 
(1914-18), 17; secret attachment, 
17, 23, 158, 233, 238; tastes shared 
with Fr Johnson, 18, 211; spiritual 
development, 19, 42-3, 49, 128, 
1 68, 21 1 ; good health, 21, 49, 55, 

99, 101, no, 150, 174, 219, 223, 
247, 249, 257; created D.B.E., 23, 
263, 265; accidents to, 23, 148, 
263-4; in hospital, 23, 264, 265; 
and Fr Johnson's prayers, 35, 48, 

100, 133; and English language, 
45; untidiness, 46, in, 114; con 
trition, 49; and state of Grace, 49, 



Macaulay, Rose: [contd.] 

65, 90; personal relationship to 
Fr Johnson, 61, 112, 227, 230, 236, 
257; ineptitude as artist, 65; Lent 
resolutions, 83, $4, 192; and war, 
87; and collective guilt, 87; pass 
ports and visas, 93, 95, 101, 147, 
149; and sacramentalism, 94; 
attachment to possessions, 107; 
New Testament study, 117; and 
poetry, 128; "nullifidian ", 140; 
and "alien worlds ", 146-7; prayers 
for Fr Johnson, 67, 158; and proof- 
correcting, 1 66, 251; and 'family 
history', 167; and meditation, 170; 
agnostic reputation, 197; quoted 
on television, 209; clubs, 221; 
differences in temperament from 
Fr Johnson, 230; and spiritual 
aridity, 234; finances, 244; and 
pronunciation, 246; German ar 
ticle on, 249; boyish tastes, 250; 
and Anglican death-bed rites, 256; 
offered D.B.E., 258-9; tendency 
to procrastinate, 259. See also 
Acquaintances; Broadcasting; 
Confession; Flats; Friends; God 
children; Handwriting; Holidays; 
Illnesses; Letters; Motor car; 
Motoring; Retreats; Swimming; 
Travel; Visits 

Books by: novels, 141, 147, 15*. I 9, 
220, 250; projected novel, 24, 220, 
255, 257, 259, 266; Abbots Verney, 
16; And No Man's Wit, 247; 
Crewe Train, 17; Dangerous Ages, 
17; Keeping up Appearances, 17; 
Milton, 18; Orphan Island, 17; 
Personal Pleasures, 18, 76 

Pleasure of Ruins: writing of, 1 8, 21, 
35, 41, 50, 53, 64, 74, 75, 77, 84, 85, 
90, 93, 98, 199; proofs of, 102, 104, 
105, no; index, 105, in; illustra 
tions, 112, 130; publication, 119, 
124, 125, 130; apologies for, 119, 
146; party for, 125; reviews of, 
125-6, 130, 133, 141, 142, 144; 
price, 126, 151; jacket, 127; not 
published in the U.S.A., 130, 142, 
151, I57" sales, 133; readers, 
141, 162, 202-3; errata, 144, 166; 
sent to Fr Johnson, 157, 160, 
162 

Potterism, 17; Some Religious Ele 
ments in English Literature, 18; Tliey 



Were Defeated, 18, 71, 151, 220; 
Told by an Idiot, 17, 198 
Towers of Trebizond, The: serious 
theme, 13, 227, 232, 239, 247, 255; 
"real point of the story", 13, 225; 
bearing on R.M.'s past, 13, see also 
"Laurie"; publication of, 22, 
219-20, 224, 225, 227; dedication, 
22; Fr Johnson's opinions of, 22-3, 
219, 225, 227, 229, 230, 232, 233, 
236; reviews of, 23, 229, 232, 239, 
247, 249, 253-4, 266; publication 
in U.S., 23, 229, 232, 234, 248; 
private appreciations of, 23, 230, 
234, 237-8; writing of, 162, 165, 
189, 190, 192, 196, 199, 200, 204, 
205, 212, 219; favourable reac 
tions to, 219, 229, 232, 234; 
237, 238-9, 244, 246, 247, 253, 255, 
266; unfavourable reactions to, 
219, 229-30, 232, 234; title, 219, 
229, 234; symbolism in, 219; 
proofs of, 224, 225, 227; "the 
camel", 225, 232, 234, 247, 255; 
"the ape", 225, 232, 234; first- 
person narrative of, 227; title-page 
epigraph (Dialogues of Mortality), 
229, 239; imperfections of 232; 
Latin in, 234; "Anglican propa 
ganda", 235; sales, 244; readers, 
247; reviewers, 247; awarded 
James Tait Black prize, 247-8; 
best-seller in U.S.A., 255 

World my Wilderness, Tlie, 18, 75, 
151, 203; Writings of E. M. 
Forster, The, 18 

Discussions: at St Francis House, 
Cambridge, 237 

Essays by: "The First Impression of 
the Waste Land", 248 

Reviews by: 40, 41, 45, 47, 48, 112, 
128, 145, 147, 151, 152, 162, 164, 
194, 223, 227, 231, 236, 257 

Articles by: 182, 220, 257 ("Religious 
Writing*), 227; for Tlirones oj 
Earth and Heaven, 254; "Satur- 
nalia ", 2<5o 

Talks by: 204; "Men's "Women and 
Women's Men", 44, 5O, 53*, 
"Changing Morals", 50, 53, i9 

III, 112 

Poetry by: 16, 43, 162; ttDir g e for 
Trebizond 1 *, 203; Christmas card 
verses, 65n, I27n, 258; Fr Johnson 
and, 203 



28l 



Macauhy, Rev. S. H., 14, 95, 265 
Macaulay, T. B. (Lord), 14 
Macaulay, W. H., 202 
Macaulay, W. J. C. (WiU), 15 
Macaulay, Zachary, 198 
McCormick, family of, 193, 201 
McCormick, Alison (ne'e Conybeare) 

40, 140, 19311 

McCormick, Canon J. C., 193 
McCormick, J. G., Dean of Man 
chester, 193 

McCormick, Rev. M. E., 193 
MacEoin, Gary, 175-6 
MacKinnon, James isyn, 220 
Mclaughlin, Rev. P., 50-1, 263 
Man on a Donkey, Tlie (H. F. M. 
Prescott), 41-2, 47, 55, 62, 71, 74, 

77 

Manchester Guardian, 142, 197 

Manning, Cardinal, 119 

Marcus Aurelius, ill 

Margaret, H.R.H. Princess, 238-9, 
245-6 

Marquand, John, 146, 155, 158 

Marques, Susan, no 

Marsh, Sir Edward, 77 

Martin, St, 50 

Martindale, Rev. C. C., 29n, 33n, 
35, 49, 170 

Martyrs, 157; Elizabethan, 73; 
Marian, 73, 260; King Charles I, 
143. See also John Foxe, Book of 
Martyrs 

Mary, the Blessed Virgin, 130, 137, 
214; Assumption of, 46-7, 79, 86, 
101, I78n, 220, 228; Immaculate 
Conception of, 58-9, 130, 220; 
tomb of, 101; "ait of", 220; 
"as sole mediatrix'*, 220 

Mary, H.M. Queen, 92 

Mary of Bethany, 34, 38-9 

Mary St, of Egypt, 250 

Mary Magdalene, St, 34, 38-9 

Mary Tudor, Queen, 81, 90, 26on 

Mass, the Roman, 130, 138; withold- 
ing of Chalice at, 77; evening 
celebrations, 88, 252; televising 
of, 140-1, 221; at Downside 
Abbey, 221; R.M.*s attendance 
at, 243, 252. For the Anglican 
Holy Communion see Euchar 
ist. 

Mathew, Abp David, 35, 38, 56, 86, 
120, 121, 126, 132, 191, 212, 215, 
224, 234 



Mathew, Rev. Gervase, 56, 120, 121, 

126, 191, 215, 224 
Matthews, W. R., Dean of St Paul's, 

66, 73-4 

Maugham, "W. Somerset, 256-7 
Maycock, Rev. F. H., 104 
Maynard, Theodore, 78 
Melbourne, Lord: biographies by 

Lord David Cecil, 203 
Men at Arms (E. Waugh), 30 
Meynell, Alice, 165 
Middle of the Journey, The (L. 

Trilling), 146 
Milman, H. H., Dean of St Paul's, 

37 

Milton, John, 36 
Mind of the Missal, The (C. C. 

Martindale), 33 
Missals, 234; the Roman, 29, 30, 3111, 

45n, 48, 84, 201, 211 ; R.M.'s, 46, 

160, 1 88 ; Altar Missal at Grosvenor 

Chapel ("Cowley Missal"), 58, 76, 

77 79 82, 130; Gothic, 76; 

English Missal for the Laity, 77; 

Peoples' Missal, The (E. A. L. 

Clarke), 82; studies of, 170 
Mr Weston's Good Wine (T. F. 

Powys), 126 
Modern Adult Fiction for School and 

College Libraries (N. Culpan), 220 
Monasteries, dissolution of, 60, Si, 

82 

Monasticism, 125, 175-6 
Month, The (journal), 71-2, 147 
Moorhouse, Lt Anthony, 244-5 
Morals: changing standards of, 53, 

109, 189; codes of, 156, 158; and 

religion, 189 
More, Henry, 143 
More, Sir Thomas, 81, 83, 128 
Morley, Rev. R., 159 
Morris, A. E., Bp of Monmouth, 

52-3 
Mortimer, Raymond, 47, 108, in, 

114, 125-6, 153, 172, 263 
Mortimer, R. C., Bp of Exeter, 224 
Moslemism, 255-6 
Moslems, 90, 97, 156 
Mosques, 90, 97, 99, 159 
Motor car, R.M.'s 19, 21, 201; 

theft of, 190; repairs to, 190, 193, 

196, 198 
Motoring, R.M. and, 21, 199, 209, 

243-4, 265; through Oxfordshire, 

29; in fog, 55, 145; in snow, 60, 



282 



142, 1 89; in Cyprus, 75, 97, 100; 

in Isle of Wight, 166; in central 

London, 198-9 

Mowbray, booksellers and publi 
shers, 49, 54, 60, 77n, 82, 173 
Muir, Edwin, 175 
Murray, Gilbert, 176, 179, 21411, 

225, 256 

Murray, John, publisher, 16 
Murray, Rosalind, see Tony bee, 

Rosalind 

Murray, Stephen, 256 
Musophilus (S. Daniel), 120, 121, 

122-3, 124-5 
My Host the World (G. Santayana), 

116 
Mystery, in religion, 127, 128, 

138-9, 152 
Myths, 147, 187 
My Way of Faith (M. D. Petre), 106 

Nashe, Thomas, 125 

Naught for your Comfort (T. Huddle- 

ston), 222, 244 
Neale, John Mason, 259 
New and Contrite Hearts (A. Pardue), 

195 

New Commentary on Holy Scripture- 
(C. Gore, H. L. Goudge & A. 
Guillaume), 34, 38, 52 

Newman, J. H., Cardinal, 72, 81, 103, 
119, 211-12; Letters and Corres 
pondence (A. Mozley), 103; Life 
(Wilfrid Ward), 223; his 'Tract 
90\ 260 

Newman's Way (S. O'Faolain), 72 

New Statesman, 79, 125, 130, 2650 

Nicholas, St, 55 

Nicolson, Harold, 30, 215 

Nicolson, Nigel, 105 

Niebuhr, Reinhold, 188 

Nonconformist Churches, 21, 86, 
152, 254 

Non-jurors, 49, 107, 119, 164 

Norms for the Novel (H. C. Gardiner), 
144 

North, Sir Thomas, 124-5 

Notestein, Wallace, 182-3, 188 

Nothing is Quite Enough (G. MacEoin, 
175-6 

Noughts and Crosses (J. Hichens), 30, 
32-3, 40-1, 172 

Nova et Vetera (G. Tyrrell), 106, 109 

Novels, 144; depicting Roman 
Catholicism, 106, 251, 254; depict 



ing Nonconformity, 143, 254; and 
"alien worlds", 146; lack of 
"supra-mundane communica 
tions", 158; American (early 2Oth 
c.), 164; for school libraries, 220; 
understatement of religious belief 
in, 247; survey of contemporary 
fiction, 249; non-religious, 251; 
depicting Anglicanism, 254; "in 
tellectual", 255; and best-seller 
lists, 255 

Observer, The, 130, I76n, 265 

O 'Donovan, Jane, 118, 121-2, 126-7, 

129, 130, 132, 137; R. M. holiday 

with, 205, 208-9 
O'Donovan, Mary Anne, 22, 118-19, 

121-2, 126-7, 129, 130, 132, 137; 

R.M. holiday with, 199, 205, 

208-9 

O'Faolain, Sean, 72 
Oldenbourg, Zoe, 177 
Olivier, family of, 43 
On the Gods and the World (Sallustius), 

214-15 
One Army Strong? (P. Kirk), 264, 

265 
One Poor Scruple (Mrs W. Ward), 

IIO, 112 

Oratory of the Good Shepherd, 223 
O Sapientia, see Liturgies: the 

Greater Antiphons 
Ordeal of Gilbert Pinfold, The (E. 

Waugh), 255 
Ordinations, 149, 234n 
Orthodox Church, The, 96, 99, 127 
Out of the Silent Planet (C. S. Lewis), 

37, 40, 44 

Overton, J., 192, 193 

Ovid, 155-6, 161, 230-1 

Oxford American Prayer Book Com 
mentary (M. H. Shepherd), 33, 231, 

235 

Oxford Apostles (G. Faber), 202 
Oxford High School, 15, 226 
Oxford Inter-Collegiate Christian 

Union, 206 

Oxford University, 177, 263 n; 
Somerville College, 16, 33, 140, 
250; Lady Margaret Hall, 33, 42; 
Literary Society, 44, 5; Oriel 
College, 72; religious revival in, 
171 ; Balliol College, 229; reported 
conversions to Moslemism, 255, 
256; women undergraduates, 256 



283 



Oxfordshire, 29, 44 

Paine, Virginia (Mrs Frank C.), 
47-8, 57, 58, U4-I5, 163, 164, 166, 
169 

Palmer, Rev. R. F., 62, 66 

Paphos, 99; Bp of, 99 

Pardue, Austin, Bp of Pittsburgh, 195 

Parties: for The Living Room, 123; 
late, 123-4; for Pleasure of Ruins, 
125; given by Fr Caraman 'and 
Longmans, 147; given by R.M., 
172-3, 191-2, 195, 221; given by 
Bonham Carters for Princess Mar 
garet, 238, 245-6; given by The 
Spectator, 255 

Patmore, Coventry, 165 

Paul, Brother (s.s.j.E. Oblate), 265, 
266 

Paul, St, 95, 99, 160, 182, 215, 224 

Peck, Winifred (nee Knox), 212 

Pedersen, Rev. A. L., 115, 162, 235 

P.E.N. International, 228 

Period Piece (G. Raverat), 40, 41, 
iio-n, 126, 129, 130, 137, 140 

Petre, Maud D., 105, 106, 120 

Phipps, Rev. Simon, 246, 255 

Pius XII, Pope, 178, 220, 239 

Plato, in 

Platonic Renaissance in England, The 
(E. Cassirer), 152 

Platonists, Cambridge, 143 n, 152 

Plautus, 257, 259, 260 

Pleshey, Retreat House at, 22, 23, 210 

Pliny, I24n, 126 

Poetry: writing o 16, 162; for 
children, 128; and prose, 189; 
long religious poems, 195. See also 
Macaulay, Rose, Poetry by 

Point of no Return (J. Marquand), 
146 

Pope, the: R.M. on, 62, 172; papal 
pronouncements, 178, 206, 221 

Popes: health of, 178; if Chinese, 197 

Powys, John Cowper, 18, 44, 126, 
145, 146, 175, 177, 178, 212 

Powys, Theodore F., 126 

Prayer, 187; meditation, 170; in 
capability of, 234 

Prayers: R.M.'s Preces Privatae, 19-20, 
45, 75-6, 92-3, 107, I3i, 188, 21 1, 
234 

in the Breviary, 30, 48, 84, 131 
post-communion, 31, 87-8, 107, 
172 



translated into English, 31-2, 35, 

44-5, 49, 54, 78, 98n, 201, 202 

Latin, 32, 45, 46n, 52, 76, 122, 

168, 169, 202 
in Fr Johnson's letters, 43, 52, 120, 

124, 131, 153, 202, 211, 213 
Collects, 54, 55, 62, 75, 84, 93, 
146, 149, 152, 155, 160, i62n, 
180, 187-8, 201, 202, 234 
Secrets, 36, 49, 86, 201 
Introits, 44, 45, 76 
communion, 45 
Propers, 76 
Graduals, 131; 

"for the whole Church", 33; 
memorizing of, 84; for the 
Sovereign, 97-8 ; Eucharistic, 132, 
138, 201, 236; "soppy" devo 
tions, 138; "very repetitive", 
140; Passion-tide, 152; Prayer 
for a Sick Child, 162; for the 
dead, 212; Graces (at meals), 
251. See also Cranmer, Abp T. 
Prescott, H. F. M., 41-2, 71, 74, 75, 

90, 144 

Presence, the Real, 67 
Price, Lucien, 182 
Priestley, J. B., 175, 178 
Priests, devotion to, 165, 166 
Pritchett, V. S., 79 
Protestants: Marian, 73, 81, 83-4, 
85; as writers, 80, 81; dissenters, 
120, 143 

Protestant Episcopal Church, The, 
164, 170, 172; General Convention 
(1952), 29 

Protestant Truth Society, 140 
Protestantism, 84, 89, 116, 120, 125; 
conversions from, 166; and ap 
proach to Faith, 187, 190 
Pryce-Jones, Alan, 79, 239 
Psalms, The, ill, 143, 147; quota 
tions from, 76, 160, 162; Latin and 
English Psalter, 107; 
Punch, 142, 158 
Purchas, Samuel, 81 
Purgatory, 59, 127 
Puritans, 78, 119, 125, 183, 188, 215 
Pusey House, 55, 104, 256 

Quakers, 49, 63, 191 
Queen, The, 232 
Quennell, Peter, 153 
Question of Anglican Orders, The (G. 
Dix), 29 



284 



Raby, F. J. E., 13011 

RadclnTe College, 235 

Raleigh, Sir Walter, 81 

Raverat, Gwendolen (nte Darwin), 

40, 41, 140 
Raymond, John, 125 
Recovery of Belief, The (C. E. M. 

Joad), 41, 42, 45-6, 4yn, 48 
Reformation, the, 52-3, 60, 61, 74, 

82, 83, 85, 113, 123, 125, 128; 

psychological origins of, 78, 91 
Reformation and the Contemplative 

Life, The (D. and G. Mathew), 

I20n, 121 

Refugees, 80, 100, 244 
Renouncement (A. Meynell), 165 
Reserved Sacrament, the, 52n, 92 
Retreat Addresses (E. K. Talbot), 173 
Retreats: attended by R.M., 17, 22, 
24, 210; attended by Fr Johnson, 
74, 159, 160, 201, 204, 227 
Richardson, Samuel, 96 
Rieu, E. V., 85, 117 
Roberts, S. C., 26sn 
Rolle, Richard, 85 

Roman Catholic Church, The, 41, 
n<5, 234; and birth control, 37; 
and St Mary Magdalene, 39; and 
Assumption of the B.V.M., 46-7, 
79, 86; election of Cardinals, 56; 
R.M. on, 58, 107, 108, in, 113, 
115, 128, 139, 163, 195, 209, 221, 
252-3 ; and death-bed dispositions, 
59; and Reason, 81; "Bible v. 
Church" in, 86; and fasting rules, 
88, 92 ; and "vague non-Catholics *, 
106; and "central point" of Faith, 
1 12 ; and anti- Anglican propaganda 
115-16, 176; teachings of, 127, 

128, 138-9, 220; and Passion-tide, 
152; and variety of practice, 205; 
"fundamentalism " of, 206; and 
modernism, 206; 'enquiry centre* 
in London, 253 

Roman Catholicism, 118, 125; R.M. 
and, 21 ; in the U.S.A., 35; Irish, 
35; appeal to the simple, 42, 253; 
potential converts to, 56, 120, 122, 

129, 221; converts to, 79, 106, 109, 
in, 113, 117, i63-4r~i72, 175, 

177-8, 192, 203, 205, 206-7, 211, 
221, 231, 252-3 

Roman Catholics: "refusal to wor 
ship with other Christians", 15, 
32, 73, 163-4, 221, 253; nuns, 15, 



127, 140, 265 ; and other faiths, 41, 
73, 163, 190-1, 253, 254; and 
Anglicans, 42, 47, 49, 78, 203, 
209, 221, 252, 260; in the U.S.A., 
42; and prayers, 43; Jesuits, 
51, 64, 65, 72n, 105-6; under 
graduates, 55n; Dominicans, 56, 
72n; writers, 72, 80-1, 83, 106, no; 
historians, 78, 132-3 ; English Recu 
sants, 80, 81, 128, 137; and perse 
cution of heretics, 81, 82, 84, 85; 
priests, 86, 89, 122, 127, 165, 209, 
253, 256, 264; R. Murray on, 89; 
devotional manuals of, 92; Irish, 
175-6; critics of A. Toynbee 
history, 179; and "authority", 190, 
197; broadminded, 191, 197; 
scholarly, 39, 206; "conservative", 
220; and indulgences, 253; and 
miracles, 253. See also, Letters, 
from Roman Catholics to R.M. 

Rose, family of, 14, 43, 119-20 

Ross, Rev. K. N., 42, 46-7, 228 

Ross Williamson, H., 51, 190, 231-2, 
236 

Rothley Temple, 153 

Royalty: extravagance of, 56, 61; 
"royalty- worship ", 92, 158 

Rugby School, 14, 15 

Ruins, 18; at Rhodes, 64; Bantu, 74; 
in Cyprus, 75, 93, 97, 99; mosques, 
90; of Salamis (Cyprus), 99; in 
Syria, Lebanon and Jordan, 100, 
101, 103; at Capernaum, 102; 
Greek, 127; R.M/S passion for, 
142; Roman, 149; Theodosian 
Wall (Istanbul), 156; atTrebizond, 
159; Temple of Artemis (Ephesus), 
1 60; Quarr Abbey, 166 

Runciman, Steven, 87, 149, 263 

Ruskin, John, 252 

Russell, Bertrand, 117 

Rutherford, Samuel, 215 

Sackville-West, Edward, 172 
Sackville-West, Lionel, 172 
Sackville-West, Mrs Lionel, see 

Hichens, Jacobine 
St Anne's House, Soho, 51 
Saints, the, 44, 45, 49, 130, 139, 224. 

Individual saints are indexed by name 
Saints and Ourselves, ed. P. Caramon, 

223-4 

Saints in Politics (E. M. House), 108 
Sallustius, 214-15 



285 



Santayana, George, 116-17 
Savonarola, 72 

Scotland under Charles I p. Mathew), 
86, 212, 215 

"Scriptures, Holy ", 55, 61 

Scrolls from the Dead Sea, The (E. 
Wilson), 213-14 

Sermons and addresses: on Corona 
tion Oath, 52; at Grosvenor 
Chapel, 59, 119, I44 *47 *49; at 
Paphos, 99; illiterate, 167; at St 
Paul's, Kniglitsbridge, 167, 175, 
192, 260; retreat addresses, 173, 
210; Lent addresses, 195; Holy- 
Week addresses, 196, 226; books 
of, 197, 215; "Church Week" 
addresses, 237 

Seven deadly sins, the, 46, 47, 48, 50 

Sex: and friendships, 33 ; in marriage, 
37; and psycho-analysts, 37; and 
morality, 109 

Shorthouse, J. H., 143 

Sibthorp, Rev. Richard, in 

Sidney, Sir Philip, 124-5 

Simon, Rev. Ulrich, 57-8 

Sin: salvation from, 49; belief in 
existence of, 230; and separation 
from God, 230 

Sitwell, Dame Edith, 259 

Smith, A. W., 189 

Smith, Rev. C. R., 222 

Smith, Emily, 22, 228, 235 

Smith, Isadore, 189 

Smith, Jean, 164, 172 

"Social joys", 32-3, 192, 195 

Society for the Promotion of Chris 
tian Knowledge, 7in, 76, 79, nsn 

Society of St Francis, 237, 239; 
friars of (unnamed), 171, 246 

Society of St John the Evangelist, 
77; St Edward's House, West 
minster, 16, 17; in the U.S.A., 17, 
164, 173; founding of, 60; Mission 
House, Cowley, 116, 140, 171; 
mission priests of (unnamed), 
116-17, 162; rules of, 130; novices, 

257 

Socrates, 109 

South Africa: tension in, no; re 
ligion in, no, 189; Anglican 
missionaries and, 222-3; Anglican 
schools, 223; "treason trials", 244 

South India, Church of, 199, 231; 
liturgy of, 221 

Southern, Alfred, 80-1, 83 



Spanish Tudor (H. F. M. Prescott), 90 
Spectator, The, 150, 255, 260 
Spender, Stephen, 148, 255 
Spirit of the Oxford Movement, The 

(C. Dawson), 103, 107 
Sports and Games: walking, 33; 
hockey, 33; tennis, 33; croquet, 
153 ; boating, 161, 189; riding, 199, 

205, 209; roof-climbing, 250 
Sprigge, Sylvia, 142 

Stalin, Josef, 90 

Stark, Freya, 255 

Stephen, Sir Leslie, 141 

Stern, Karl, 40 

Stevenson, Adlai, 48 

Stewart, W. H., Bp of Jerusalem, 

101 
Story and the Fable, The (E. Muir), 

175 
Stricken Deer, TJie (Lord D. Cecil), 

203 
Strikes: newspaper, 196-7; railway, 

198 
Studies in Social History, ed. J. H. 

Plumb, 16711 
Study of History, A (A. Toynbee), 

176, 178-9, 182 
Study of Lamennais (A. R. Vidler), 

151 

Suez, 243, 244 

Sunday Times, 45, 46, 47, 48, 73, 108, 
126, 130, 175, 182, 215, 258 

Swimming (and bathing): R.M/S 
passion for, 15, 65; at Varazze, 15; 
at Grantchester, 33; in Cyprus, 
75, 99, 1 oo ; in Lake of Galilee, 102 ; 
in Isle of Wight, 107, 165, 166; in 
the Black Sea, 149, 155, 160; in 
the Thames, 168; in warm sea, 
189; at Skegness, 199, 205, 209; 
diving, 199; in the Serpentine, 207 

Swinburne, Algernon, no 

Sykes, Christopher, in 

Symonds, John Addington, 162-3 

Tablet, The, 32, 95, 190-1, 199, 203, 

206, 234, 237, 260 
Talbot, Rev. E. K., 173 
Taylor, Jeremy, 60, 67, 107 
Television: 140-1, 205, 209, 221-2 
Temple, Abp William, 61, 73 ; works 

of, 1 06 

Tennyson, Lord, 84n, 86n 
Terence, 257 
Theology (journal), 221 



286 



Thomas a Kempis, 85 

Thomas Aquinas, St, 177, 220 

Thomas Becket, St, 225 

Thrones of Earth and Heaven, The 
(R. Beny), 254-5 

Time (journal), 253 

Times, The, 92, 130, 194, 206, 256 

Times Literary Supplement, The, 79, 
145, 162, 194, 203, 223, 227-8, 231,^ 
236; review of The Towers of 
Trebizond, 23, 239 

Tomis, I55n, 156, i<5i 

Tom Jones (H. Fielding), 96 

Tortosa, 100, 103 

To the Lighthouse (V. Woolf), 141 

Toynbee, Arnold, 176, 178-9, 182 

Toynbee, Philip, 176 

Toynbee, Rosalind, 89, 256 

Tractarians, 89n, 108, 164, 202, 260 

Travel, R. M. and: by air, 95, 97, 
101, 103, 156; in Cyprus, 97, 98-9, 
100; in Lebanon, 100; in Syria, 
100 ; in Jordan, 100, 101, 102; in 
Israel, 101, 102, 103; reactions to 
Middle East, 103; in the U.S.S.R. 
(attempted), 147, 148-9* 150; in 
the U.S.A., 148-9; in Turkey, 159- 
60, 161, 176; enthusiasm for, 150; 
expenses, 150. See also Holidays, 
R.M.'s 

'Treacle wells", 113, 190 

Trebizond, 23, 159, 160, 219 

Trevelyan, family of, 14 

Trevelyan, G. M., 167 

Trilling, Lionel, 146 

Troy, 160, 230-1 

Tulliver, Maggie" (The Mill on the 
Floss), 158 

Turks, 149, I59~6o 

Tutin, Dorothy, 123 

Two Studies in Virtue (C. Sykes), III 

Tyndale, William, 83, 124-5 

Tyrrell, Rev. George, 109, 120, 197; 
works of, 105, 106, 149; Auto 
biography and Life (M. D. Petre), 
105-6 

Understanding Europe (C. Dawson), 

57 

Underhill, Evelyn, 210 
United Nations, 100, 101 
Unity, of the Churches: Christian 

Unity week, 73 : Bp of Bristol on, 

87 
University College Hospital, 264 



Varazze, 15, 76, 118, 137, 226; con 
vent school at, 15, 92, 127 
Vaughan, C. J., Dean of LlandafT, 

163 

Vaughan, Canon Edward, i63n 
Vaughan, Henry, 76 
Vaux of Harrow den (C. Anstruther), 

I28n 

Venice, 23, 24, 248, 252 
Vesuvius, Mt, 126 
Via Media of the Anglican Church, The 

(J. H. Newman), 211-12 
Victorian Boyhood, A (L. E. Jones), 

229 
Victorian England (G. M. Young), 

194-5, 196 

Vidler, Rev. A. R., 151*1 
View-Review (journal), 71 
Viper of Milan, The (M. Bowen), 180 
Virgin Mary, The (G. Miegge), 220 
Vision of Cod, The (K. E. Kirk), 165 
Visits, by R.M. : to Oxford, 29, 44, 

50; to Dorset (Long Crichel 

House), in, 112, 114, 171-2, 263; 

to Mottisfont Abbey, 153; to 

Cambridge, 202, 237, 238; to 

Worcestershire, 208; to Nashdom 

Abbey, 226 

See also Holidays, R.M.'s and 

Macaulay, Jean, R.M.'s visits to 
Von Hiigel, Baron, see Hiigel, 

Baron Friedrich von 



W. G. Ward and the Oxford Move 
ment (W. Ward), 112-13 
Waggett, Rev. P. N., 16, 116, 226 
Walled Garden, The (H. Ross 

Williamson), 231, 236 
Ward, Mrs Humphry, 207, 225 
Ward, Maisie, 72n, inn, 120 
Ward, W. G., 112-13, I20n 
Ward, Wilfrid, 1 12, 120, 223 
Ward, Mrs Wilfrid, no 
Warren, Austin, 257 
Waugh, Evelyn, 30, 197, 234, 255 
Webster, 249 
Wedgwood, C. V., 183, 188 
Weidenfeld, George, 149, 151- J 52 
Weidenfeld & Nicolson, publishers, 
112, 125, 133, 142, 144, 147, I49 
151-2 

Weil, Simone, 35 
Wells, H. G., 168 
Wesley, Charles, 180 



287 



Wesley, John, 180 

Wesleyans, 174 

West, Rebecca, 255 

Westcott, B. F., Bp of Durham, 83 

Whitehead, Alfred North, 182 

Why 1 am not a Roman Catholic (K. N. 
Ross), 42, 46, 47 

Wight, Isle of, 20, 104-10 pass., 165-6 

Wilfrid Wards and the Transition, The 
(M. Ward), in, 112, 117, 120 

Wilkins, Bp John, 72, 7311 

Willetts, Nancy, 20, 21, 62, 165 

William IV, King, 61 

Williams, Charles, 71 

Williams, Rev. G. Mercer, 10, 39 

Wilson, Edmund, 213-14 

Wings of an Eagle, edited by G. Lacey 
May, 21$ 

Wood, Rev. Cecil, 173 

Woodworth, Harriet, 228 

Woolf, Virginia, 141, 142-3, 249 

Words, their derivations, meanings, 
usage and pronunciation: advers 
ities, 202; *alm3h, 37; almighty, 
155; already, 62; cantaloup, 113; 
commercium, 35-6, 43, 45, 46, 48; 
convalescant, 187; Cowley, 231; 
Cowper, 231; digno, 77; 'divine 
working', 54; down, 231; eirenic, 
176; Ember days, 234; errantibus, 
155; excita, 54; exsequentes, 54; 
fulc, 231; grievous, 150; halibut, 



45; hallows, 45; how, 231; howl, 
231; in nomine, 52; "Marry come 
up", 250; Mass, 206, 250-1; 
monstrous, 98; mysterium, 77; 
myth, 187; "Norman", 121, 
122-3, 125; novimus, 32; obsequies, 
152-3; owl, 231; pagan, 246-7; 
paganism, 89 ; percipiant, 54; Petre, 
105; Pravoslavni, I27n; proficiat, 
146, 149; "prP se "' 150; 
Protestant, 52; purpose, 167; 
rationabilia, 52, 81; remedies, 54; 
Roman Catholic, 206-7; sanctifica- 
tionibus, 87-8; undo, 38; very, 
201-2; wolf, 231 

Words of the Missal, The (C. C. 
Martindale), 29, 33, 34, 35-6, 49-50 
World of Love, A (E. Bowen), 194 
Worship (journal), 88, 89, 92 
Worthies of England, The (T. Fuller), 

123 

Wrestling Jacob (M. Bowen), 180 
Wright, Rev. Charles, 121-2, 132, 

137 
Writer's Diary, A (V. Woolf), 141 

Yaxley, 209 

Young, G. M., 194-5, 19<5 

Young Mr Newman (M. Ward), 72 

Zosimus, Pope, 170 



288 



Dame Rose Macaulay 



R.OSE MACAULAY, who died in 1958, was born in England in 
1 88 1. During much of her childhood she lived with her 
parents and five brothers and sisters in Italy. Her father, G. C. 
Macaulay, who lectured in English literature at Cambridge 
University, was the first in generations of his family not to 
become a member of the clergy. Miss Macaulay herself grew 
away from the Anglican Church in her middle years, but in 
later life, through her correspondence with Father Johnson, 
returned to the Church's sacraments. After her first novel 
Abbots Verney was published in 1906, she produced over the 
next forty years a succession of novels, verse, essays and 
criticism. Her last book, a satirical novel, was The Towers of 
Trebizoncl, published in 1956. In 1951 Cambridge University 
bestowed upon her an honorary Litt.D. and in 1958 she was 
created Dame Commander of the British Empire. 



Constance Babington-Smith 



A cousin of Rose Macaulay, CONSTANCE BABINGTON-SMITH 
is the author of Evidence in Camera and Testing Time. She was 
born in 1912, and joined the W\ A.A.F. in 1940. For her work 
as a photographic interpreter during the war, she was 
awarded the Medal of the British Empire and the American 
Legion of Merit (the first time this had been awarded to a 
British woman). After the war she stayed on in the United 
States, but now lives again in England. 



Rose Macaulay, 

who died in 1958, was born in England in 
1881. During much of her childhood she lived 
with her parents and five brothers and sisters 
in Italy. Her father, G. C. Macaulay, who 
lectured in English literature at Cambridge 
University, was the first in generations of his 
family not to become a member of the clergy. 
Miss Macaulay herself grew away from the 
Anglican Church in her middle years, but in 
later life, through her correspondence with 
Father Johnson, returned to the church's sac 
raments. After her first novel, Abbots Verney, 
was published in 1906, she produced over the 
next forty years a succession of novels, verse, 
essays and criticism. Her last book, a satirical 
novel, was The Towers of Trebizond, pub 
lished in 1956. In 1951 Cambridge University 
bestowed upon her an honorary Litt.D. and 
in 1958 she was created Dame Commander 
of the British Empire. 

Constance BaUngton- Smith 

A cousin of ROSE MACAULAY, Constance 
Babington-Smith is the author of Evidence in 
Camera and Testing Times. She was born in 
1912, and joined the W.A.A.E in 1940. For 
her work as a photographic interpreter during 
the war, she was awarded the Medal of the 
British Empire and the American Legion of 
Merit (the first time this had been awarded 
to a British woman). After the war she stayed 
on in the United States, but now lives again 
in England.