[22 Paradise Rd., Northampton, Mass.]

T. S.Eliot
The Criterion
5 January 1939
Dear Love,

It seems a very long time since I have heard from you, even allowing for your having been moving about, and very busy, and for there having been no good boats since Christmas. If I do not hear next week I shall be tempted to send a reply paid wire: though you did not even tell me on what date you would be back in Northampton. Idogs'Boerre' (Norwegian Elkhound);b7envied by TSE;b3 think the pleasantest moment, after the holidays are over, might be being welcomed by Boerre who will have been very homesick, no doubt: I envy you (and him) that.

IMorleys, theTSE's New Years celebrated with;d5 have had my New Year with the Morleys, andMoot, The;a4 am off again tomorrow to a weekend meeting of the ‘Moot’, to discuss Christianity and Civilisation for three nights and two days on end; and after that I look forward to not leaving London again for a long time to come; certainly not at weekends. AndSeaverns, Helento tea with TSE;c5 I have finally had Mrs. Seaverns to tea (anFaber, Thomas Erle ('Tom', TSE's godson)takes TSE to Madame Tussaud's;b2 arduousFaber, Richard ('Dick')takes TSE to Madame Tussaud's;a3 day, because I had to go to Madame Tussaud’s with the Faber boys in the morning – it was a treat which they designed for me; andHotsons, thetheir heartiness;a7Hotson, LeslieHotsons, theHotson, MaryHotsons, the had to dine with the Hotsons in the evening – they are now mad about Northumbrian bagpipes, and Leslie now performs on that as well as the clarinet, cello, recorder, to say nothing of madrigals from his tuneful voice) andFowler-Seaverns, James;a2 I hope that she enjoyed herself: by going to dinner and then having her to tea I hope I have done a bit to cheer her during Jim’s absence. IBoutwood Lectures (afterwards The Idea of a Christian Society)being prepared;a2 am working on my lectures, I have no news of the play, andCriterion, Theshut up against contributions;b5 I am returning gradually contributions to the Criterion.1 IRoberts, Janetlaments The Criterion's closure;a2 posted you yesterday the letters I have received about it: few but good – I thought Janet Roberts’s particularly touching.2 And I enclose two more, these from strangers: I was especially moved by the one from Brno.3

A week without a letter from you makes me very restless. I hope that there may be something tomorrow, but I must write tonight because of going tomorrow (Friday) to my Moot at Hayward’s Heath.

I cannot write a long letter until I hear from you.

Your loving Tom

1.The final edition of the Criterion was published in Jan. 1939. See TSE, ‘Last Words’, The Criterion: A Literary Review 18 (Jan. 1939), 269–75: CProse 5, 659–65. TSE continued to use up Criterion notepaper for these letters and others into 1942.

2.JanetRoberts, Janetlaments The Criterion's closure;a2 Roberts to TSE, 2 Jan. 1939: ‘I am so distressed about The Criterion. It’s easy to understand your decision, & perhaps some new paper will appear before long that will do some of the work The Criterion has done: but in the meantime the news means one place less where one can find intelligence & moral energy and a sharpener for one’s own wits … [Of]ten in the last year […] I’ve picked out an old number and read your Commentary. There’s one that sticks in mind especially – about 1928 perhaps it was – recalling the excitement of being in Paris before the War, & sitting in the gardens of the Luxemburg. We always read the Commentaries first: and whether I “agreed” or “disagreed” with any particular statement, I don’t think my attitude to the questions you talked of was ever not modified by what you said.’

3.F. ChudobaCriterion, Thelamented even in Brno;b6n, a Professor at the Masaryk University, wrote on 3 Jan. 1939 that he had read ‘Last Words’ ‘with pity and sorry [sc. sorrow] in my heart because The Criterion has been my good friend since its first number which I perused in a fast train between Brno and Prague in autumn, 1922 […]

‘I do not know how many readers it has had in our betrayed, dismembered, unhappy Czechoslovakia – but I do know that the library of our English Seminar in the Masaryk University of Brno is the only “public” library in our country on the shelves of which all its volumes are standing. And I do know that it has always been appreciated here as one of the best and noblest periodicals we have assembled in our city.

‘If it is really not possible to you to change your decision, please accept at least our sincere thanks for what you have done as editor – the best editor of an English literary periodical whom we know in these dreary times.’

Boutwood Lectures (afterwards The Idea of a Christian Society), Spens invites TSE to deliver, being prepared, and Oldham's Times letter, TSE on delivering, being rewritten for publication, approaching publication, published as Christian Society, sent to EH, reception, selling strongly, apparently stimulating to others,
Criterion, The, its monthly meetings fatigue TSE, introduced TSE to Whibley, arrangements in TSE's absence, first contributors' meeting since Monro's death, 1932 contributors' gathering, first contributors' gathering of 1934, Russell Square gathering for, particularly heavy gathering, its gatherings dreaded, to be wound up, reflections on ending, shut up against contributions, lamented even in Brno, letters of condolence, reading poetry submissions for, July 1931, 'Commentary', April 1932, laborious 'Commentary', July 1932, 'Commentary', October 1932, 'Commentary', October 1933, 'Commentary' on Irving Babbitt, prepared on holiday, July 1934, 'Commentary', January 1935, TSE ordering, October 1935, 'Commentary', 'Commentary', which TSE regrets as too personal, July 1936, possibilities for 'Commentary', October 1936, being made up, being finalised, to be ordered, January 1937, prepared in August 1936, April 1937, 'Commentary', July 1937, 'Commentary', January 1938, 'Commentary' on Nuffield endowments, which is sparsely well received, April 1938, 'Commentary', July 1938, 'Commentary', January 1939, to be final issue, 'Last Words',
dogs, TSE imagines himself as EH's dog, Pollicle, endear Hodgson to TSE, EH fond of, TSE wishes to give EH, TSE enthuses over with Ambassador Stimson's wife, death of Lord Lisburne's gun-dog, wish to buy EH dog reaffirmed, James Thurber's dog, wish to buy EH dog develops, TSE's wish that EH choose dog for him, of Shamley Wood, Aberdeen Terrier, belonging to Gerald Graham, TSE against, Alsatian, bites F&F sales manager in Cheltenham, Blue Bedlington Terrier, TSE wishes to bring EH, related to the Kerry Blue, TSE fantasises with Hodgson about breeding, TSE wishes EH might have, 'Boerre' (Norwegian Elkhound), travels to America, described, and right-hand traffic, TSE receives photo of, affords EH exercise, envied by TSE, scourge of Northampton, cuts foot, when chasing squirrel, suspected attempt to abduct, 'disorderly', 'cantankerous', taking unaccompanied exercise, decorated at dog-show, goes missing, not taken to Maine, EH decides to give up, poignant photograph of, dies, Bull Terrier, Ralph Hodgson's 'Picky' bites cat, home found for 'Picky', Hodgson fantasises with TSE about breeding, Dachshund, among TSE's preferred short-legged breeds, Hope Mirrlees's 'Mary', elkhound, belonging to Mrs Eames, as breed for EH, Jack Russell, among TSE's preferred short-legged breeds, possible replacement for Boerre, Kerry Blue, related to Blue Bedlington Terrier, at Army and Navy stores, Labrador, the Morleys' eight puppies, the Morleys', Pekingese, TSE averse to, belonging to Mrs Behrens, 'Polly' (the Eliots' Yorkshire Terrier), falls off roof, taken to have wound dressed, barks at Hungarian language, Poodle, as breed for EH, 'Rag Doll' (Scottish Terrier), travels to Grand Manan, TSE receives photo of, EH gives up, Samoyed, considered for EH, spaniel, belonging to the Fabers, Staffordshire Terrier, Hodgson advises Miss Wilberforce on,
Faber, Richard ('Dick'), bought roller-skates, takes TSE to Madame Tussaud's, the more religious Faber son, taken to Distant Point, entering Naval Cadet school, serving on cruiser, in hospital with broken leg, fellow convalescent at Minsted, TSE speaks at Chatham Club to oblige,
see also Fabers, the
Faber, Thomas Erle ('Tom', TSE's godson), not named for TSE, his photograph on TSE's mantel, sends one-word letter, poem written for, and 'The Naming of Cats', which consoles him, decorates matchbox for TSE, given watch for Christmas, bought telescope, takes TSE to Madame Tussaud's, in school Mikado, win scholarship but splits infinitive, TSE's impotence as godfather to, bought fishing rod, TSE goes fishing with, treated by TSE in Cambridge, now don at Corpus Christi, Cambridge,
see also Fabers, the

4.ThomasFaber, Thomas Erle ('Tom', TSE's godson) Erle Faber (1927–2004), TSE’s godson and principal dedicatee of Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats, was to become a physicist, teaching at Cambridge, first at Trinity, then for fifty years at Corpus Christi. He served too as chairman of the Geoffrey Faber holding company.

Fowler-Seaverns, James,

1.JamesFowler-Seaverns, James Fowler-Seaverns, adopted son of Joel and Helen Seaverns. TSE to Theodore Spencer, 9 Nov. 1938: ‘You may be presented within a month or two with a letter of introduction from me for a man named Jim Fowler, or he may call himself James Fowler Seaverns. He is a very nice lad (Harrow and Magdalene) not a bit literary, runs a business in London and Australia which has some mysterious connexion with Needham, Mass. Amongst other things he is marketing the Iron Lung. He has adoptive parents from Portland Maine but has never been in America before. He married a girl named Roper who is some collateral of St. Thos. More, she died this summer, and he is a widower with two small children. You will find him a nice innocent fellow who will appreciate anything convivial.’

Hotsons, the, compared to Paul More as hosts, described for EH, their heartiness, looking after Georgina Dobrée,
Moot, The, first meeting, invited to TSE's Maritain dinner, no substitute for individual friendships, seems futile, welcomes Reinhold Niebuhr as guest, discusses TSE's paper,
Morleys, the, join the Eliots in Eastbourne, TSE fears overburdening, go on holiday to Norway, more TSE's friend than VHE's, return from Norway, life at Pike's Farm among, reading Dickens aloud to, their Thanksgiving parties, suitable companions to Varsity Cricket Match, and TSE to Laughton's Macbeth, TSE's June 1934 fortnight with, and certain 'bathers' photographs', and TSE play 'GO', attend Richard II with EH, TSE's New Years celebrated with, take TSE to Evelyn Prentice and Laurel & Hardy, TSE's return from Wales with, TSE's September 1935 week with, leave for New York, one of two regular ports-of-call, see EH in Boston, safely returned from New York, TSE reads Dr Johnson to, compared to the Tandys, add to their menagerie, reiterate gratitude for EH's peppermints, in Paris with TSE, give TSE copy of Don Quixote, and Fabers take TSE to pantomime, and TSE's Salzburg expedition, join Dorothy Pound dinner, visit Hamburg, have Labrador puppies, dinner at Much Hadham for, TSE to see them off at Kings Cross, seem unhappy in America, Thanksgiving without, in New Canaan, return to Lingfield, remember TSE's birthday, difficulties of renewing friendship with,
Roberts, Janet, just returned from the Alps, laments The Criterion's closure, remembers EH in Scotland, her parents recalled by EH, sends TSE butter, resemblance to husband, TSE's fondness for, writes about Rome broadcast, confides Michael's illness, following Michael's death, TSE reads to her children, dinner with over Christmas, worried about Michael's job,
see also Robertses, the
Seaverns, Helen, finally dines with TSE, teaches TSE card games, bearer of EH's Christmas present, charms TSE, hosts TSE and the Perkinses, entertained by TSE, TSE hesitates to confide in, and Perkinses dine with TSE, to tea with TSE, seeks advice from TSE on transatlantic tourism, her comforts equivalent to Mappie's, houses EH on 1939 arrival, an old spoiled child, disburdens herself over tea, laments life in Hove, removed from grandchildren,

3.HelenSeaverns, Helen Seaverns, widow of the American-born businessman and Liberal MP, Joel Herbert Seaverns: see Biographical Register.