80th Anniversary of Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats

Cat embroidery made by T. S. Eliot in 1894

An embroidery made by a young T. S. Eliot hinted at things to come. The embroidery, made in 1894, shows a ribbon-collared cat ready to pounce on a ball of wool. It’s believed Eliot first put pen to paper with his cats in a 1931 letter to his young godson, Tom Faber, who had written to Eliot about his cat. READ

A first look at Eliot’s pocket diaries

 

T. S. Eliot’s diaries from the 1930s

 

Included in T. S. Eliot’s personal papers is a collection of appointment diaries – small leather-covered pocket diaries which could fit in the breast pocket of a suit jacket or coat; some of them still have an accompanying pencil tucked in. READ

First broadcast of ‘Practical Cats’

This Christmas sees the 80th anniversary of the first broadcast of a selection of T. S. Eliot’s Practical Cats poems. The poems, which weren’t published until almost two years later, were read by Eliot’s friend, Geoffrey Tandy – a writer, broadcaster and scientist who worked at the Natural History Museum. READ

T. S. Eliot becomes a British citizen

 

 

‘I have applied for Naturalisation and been accepted, having pulled a few strings with the Home Secretary’ – T. S. Eliot in a letter to his brother, 25th October 1927.

 

On the 2nd of November 1927 T. S. READ

Happy Birthday Mr Eliot

To celebrate T. S. Eliot’s 129th birthday, we take a look at how he spent some of his birthdays, the gifts he received and a special birthday cake tradition …

 

Eliot’s letters suggest that he did not make much of his birthday in his twenties and thirties: other than the occasional letter to thank his mother for a birthday cheque, there are no thank-you letters to be found for birthday greetings, gifts, or a shared celebratory meal. READ

‘I have taken to the vice of Dining Clubs’

T. S. Eliot in a letter to Virginia Woolf, 27 April 1937.

 

 

A look through Eliot’s letters and personal papers reveals that he was a member of several clubs – quiet, private places where he could meet or play host to business and personal acquaintances and friends. READ

For the love of cheese

Included in the latest volume of the Letters of T. S. Eliot is a letter to the Editor of the Times entitled ‘Stilton Cheese’, written on 25 November 1935 and published a few days later. Eliot is replying to a letter from poet and literary editor J. READ

Introducing Mrs Eliot…

In the spring of 1958 the (relatively) new Mr and Mrs Eliot travelled to America for a month so that T. S. Eliot could introduce his new wife, Valerie, to his family. They sailed from Southampton to New York aboard the Media before flying to Texas for lecture engagements and then on to Cambridge, via New York, to spend time with various members of the Eliot family. READ