JANUARY 1939

Graves begins the 1939 entries with an extended "where we are now" update: The group (Graves, Riding, Dorothy Simmons , and Beryl and Alan Hodge ) is in Château de la Chevrie , Montauban, a villa rented furnished from Mme La Comtesse de Kerellouan for £40.00 per year.
Graves, Riding and Hodge are working on what is now titled the Dictionary of Exact Meanings . Though no contract has been signed, there is an understanding with Dent and Little, Brown. Constable has an option on The Swiss Ghost , and the English edition of T. E. Lawrence to his Biographer is due to be published in a few weeks (the American edition was published 21 December 1938).
Riding is working on Lives of Wives (for Cassell's), her children's story, Reeves' Furniture , various pieces for Epilogue, The Left Heresy with Harry Kemp and Rimbaud with Norman Cameron. Dorothy continues with her sculpture, Alan is revising Year of Damage , and Beryl does the typing and looks after the two cats (Nono and Bellamy) and her hedgehog.
Graves also lists current close friendships, noting that his friendship with Norman Cameron has cooled since the latter's marriage to Catherine Vandervelde. Relations with Honor Wyatt have also become more distant, as have those with Maisie Somerville, who could not endorse the " Protocol ."
This month Graves drafts three new poems, " The Love Beast ," " The Hostage " (later "The Bombardment") and a poem about a party. Riding finishes the draft of Lives of Wives. Time Magazine publishes a "daring" review by Schuyler Jackson and Tom Matthews of Riding's Collected Poems . McIntyre sends a letter with concerns about the Dictionary ; Alan Hodge, Graves and Riding spend several hours drafting a reply.
January begins with an extended visit from Montague Simmons, and the month sees warm spring days and "wet and wild" days; Graves writes of " a walk with Laura at 3 o'clock in the morning: misty stars and a warm wind." Riding's birthday is a quiet affair (she requested no gifts), but Anita and Juan bring an offering of eau-de-cologne, and the friends celebrate with cake and flowers. Karl sends Riding a cameo of Lucrece. Graves chronicles the Italian takeover of Majorca, and receives a distressing letter from Gelat. Graves and Riding send him £50.
Graves and Riding both have bicycle accidents; Riding's is minor, but Graves' accident leaves him badly bruised, and he is in pain for several days. But at the end of the month, his tone is glib: the death of W. B. Yeats is "greeted with satisfaction."
There are six enclosures this month:

Hands Referenced

    • Annotation: ink correction
    • Character: regular
    • Ink: black

Places Mentioned

  • Château de la Chevrie

    Montauban-de-la-Bretagne, Brittany, France
    translating as "Venison Castle," La Chevrie was manor of an estate that RG & LR rented with Alan Hodge and Beryl Pritchard during their stay in France in 1938
  • Montauban

    Montauban-de-la-Bretagne, Brittany, France
  • Majorca/ Mallorca

    Majorca, Sp
    Largest of the Balearic Islands, located in the Mediterranean Sea off the eastern coast of Spain. R.G. and L.R. lived there, in Deyá, from 1929-1936. eds

People Mentioned

  • Robert

    Graves, Robert
    [1st person]. (1895-1985). Poet, novelist, essayist, critic, and author of his diary. eds.
  • Laura

    Riding,Laura
    (1901-91) American poet. Laura Riding (née Reichenthal; then Laura Gottschalk).
  • Dorothy

    Simmons, Dorothy
    Sculptor associated with the Graves-Riding inner circle (1938-39). Married to Montague Simmons. eds
  • Beryl

    Pritchard, Beryl
    daughter of Harry and Amy Pritchard, R.G.'s second wife. Formerly married to Alan Hodge. Robert and Beryl had four children: William, Lucia, Juan and Tomas. eds
  • Alan

    Hodge, Alan
    Oxford history graduate. Became close friends with LR & RG. First husband of Beryl Graves. CP & WG
  • Countess

    Comptesse de Kerellouan
    landowner of Château de la Chevrie in Montauban, France eds.
  • David Reeves

    Reeves, David
    Brother of James Reeves [and Ethel Herdman] RPG 292.
  • Harry Kemp

    Kemp, Harry
    Poet. Met Graves and Riding through James Reeves in August 1936, just after their arrival in England. In their previous correspondence, Riding had been intrigued by his falling-out with Communism. He became associated with their circle, collaborating on various projects. (RPG 248-49)
  • Norman Cameron

    Cameron, Norman
    Poet. Built Can Torrent in 1932-1933. W.G.; m. to Elfriede, then to Catherine Vandervelde; friend and contributor to LR and RG's work eds.
  • Catherine Vandervelde

    Vandervelde, Catherine
    one of Korda's scriptwriters; friend of RG and LR, met at Denham studios; contributor to World and Ourselves; married Norman Cameron in September, 1938. eds. Diary, and Friedmann 302
  • Honor

    Wyatt, Honor
    Journalist. Arrived in Deyá fortuitously. Married to Gordon Glover...Son Julian. W.G. First acquainted with R.G. and L.R. early in 1934; returned to visit in 1935; continued friendship in England. eds (RPG 211).
  • Maisie

    Sommerville, Maisie
    Head of BBC Education broadcasting department. Friend of R.G. and L.R. Arranged accomodation for them when they returned to London as exiles. W.G., eds.
  • Schuyler Jackson

    Jackson, Schuyler
    American poet who became Laura Riding's second husband. Graves and Riding stayed with Jackson, his wife Katharine ("Kit"), and his family on their farm in Pennsylvania in 1939. It was here that the partnership between R.G. and L.R. came to an end. eds
  • Tom

    Matthews, T.S.(Tom)
    American journalist. Took sabbatical from TIME and arrived in Deyá in 1930. Involved from then on with L.R. and R.G. WG
  • McIntyre

    McIntyre, Alfred R.
    president of Little, Brown & Co. (publishers) eds.
  • Montague Simmonds

    Simmons, Montague
    poet, and civil servant in the children's branch of the Home Office; m. to Dorothy Simmons, the sculptress RPG
  • Anita

    Ana, Anita
    Marroig. Gelat's daughter, married to Juan Vives the Doctor's brother. Live in Rennes, France. WG
  • Juan

    Vives, Juan
    The Doctor's brother. Married to Gelat's daughter. Lived in Rennes, France. WG
  • Karl/Carl

    Goldschmidt, Karl
    Karl Goldschmidt, later Kenneth Gay: Graphic artist, friend and secretary of Robert Graves and Laura Riding since 1934. R. G. spells both as Carl and Karl.
  • Gelat

    Más, Juan Marroig
    Juan Marroig Mas, called Gelat: Landowner on Deyá and friend of Robert Graves and Laura Riding (L.R. & R.G.'s factotum. W.G.)
  • Yeats

    Yeats, William Butler
    (1865-1939) Major Irish poet. eds. Was on the island of Majorca December 1935. WG
  • Ros

    Cooper, Rosaleen Dr.
    Dr. Rosaleen Cooper, R.G.'s sister. W.G.; husband Jim, sons Dan, Roger & Paul RPG.
  • T.E.

    Lawrence, T. E.
    'Lawrence of Arabia.' Met Robert in Oxford in the early twenties. Made Robert his biographer and had him write "Lawrence and the Arabs." WG
  • Graves, Robert
    Author of the diary.
  • Graves, William
    Son of Robert and Beryl Graves. Helped to identify names, places and titles in Deya (1935-1936) and with translations and other references in three ways. He left an annotated printout of the first six months of the diary in the Graves Trust Room at St. John's College, Oxford. He also sent Chris Petter an Excel file with a list identifying names and places, principally in the Majorcan sections of the diary, and a glossary of Spanish terms. Finally he has sent the editors answers in response to reference questions. Notes by William Graves are identified with the initials WG.
  • RPG
    Unidentified person; possibly a misspelling of Robert Percival Graves (whose initials on this project are RG).

Organizations Mentioned

  • J.M. Dent & Sons

    Dent, J.M.
    Publishing house founded in 1888 and absorbed by Nicholson in 1988 eds.
  • Little, Brown & Co.

    Little, Brown & Co.
    Publisher in Boston who agreed to take on LR's Dictionary of Related Meanings in 1938 eds.
  • Constable & Co., Ltd.

    Constable
    Constable Publishers. Arranged with them to print and distribute Seizin Press Epilogue and books. WG
  • Cassell and Company Ltd.

    Publishers of Robert Graves' Collected Poems [1938], and the novel Count Belisarius [1938].
  • Editors

    Editors of the Graves Diary Project.

Bibliography

    • Title: Dictionary [projected project; unfinished]
    • Author: Riding, Laura
    • Date: 1935
    • Title: The Swiss Ghost [formerly The Kind Ghost] [novel]
    • Author: Graves, Robert/ Riding, Laura
    • Date: 1937-04-22
    • Title: T.E. Lawrence to His Biographer
    • Author: Lawrence, T.E.
    • Editor: Graves, Robert
    • PubPlace: New York
    • Publisher: Doubleday, Doran & Co., Inc.
    • Idno: A49
    • Date: 1938
    • Title: Lives of Wives [prose]
    • Author: Riding, Laura
    • PubPlace: London, Toronto, Melbourne & Sydney
    • Publisher: Cassell and Co. Ltd.
    • Idno: A39
    • Date: 1939
    • Title: Furniture: An Explanatory History
    • Author: Reeves, David
    • Editor: [Riding, Laura]
    • PubPlace: London
    • Publisher: Faber
    • Date: 1947
    • Title: The Left Heresy in Literature and Life [the essay "Politics and Poetry" comprises the closing section of this book.(RPG 278) eds.]
    • Author: Kemp, Harry/ Riding, Laura/ others
    • Editor: Riding, Laura
    • PubPlace: London
    • Publisher: Methuen
    • Idno: B29
    • Date: 1939
    • Title: Translation [prose: unpublished?]
    • Author: Graves, Robert, Riding Laura
    • Date: 1936-02
    • Title: Year of Damage [novel]
    • Author: Hodge, Alan
    • Date: 1936-12
    • Title: Covenant of Literal Morality, The [subtitle Protocol I; privately printed]
    • Author: Aldridge, John, Dorothy Hutchinson, Lucie Brown, Ward Hutchinson, George Buchanan, Alix Kemp, Mary Buchanan, Hary Kemp, Norman Cameron, Len Lye, Gordon Glover, Albert Mills, Robert Graves, Mary Phillips, Sally Graves, Beryl Pritchard, Liddell Hart, David
    • Editor: Riding, Laura
    • PubPlace: Bristol
    • Publisher: Western Printing Services Ltd.
    • Idno: A37
    • Date: 1938
    • Title: Love Beast, The [poem; published as The Beast]
    • Title: No More Ghosts
    • Author: Graves, Robert
    • PubPlace: London
    • Publisher: Faber & Faber
    • Idno: A50
    • Date: 1939-01-06
    • Title: Hostage [poem; published as Dawn Bombardment]
    • Title: Poems 1938-1945 [1945]
    • Author: Graves, Robert
    • PubPlace: London, Toronto, Melbourne & Sydney
    • Publisher: Cassell
    • Idno: A58
    • Date: 1939-01-10
    • Title: Time [Magazine]
    • PubPlace: New York
    • Title: Collected Poems [1938]
    • Author: Riding, Laura
    • PubPlace: London, Toronto, Melbourne & Sydney
    • Publisher: Cassell and Co. Ltd
    • Idno: A35
    • Date: 1938
    • Title: Count Belisarius [1938]
    • Author: Graves, Robert
    • PubPlace: London
    • Publisher: Cassell
    • Idno: A47
    • Date: 1937-07-21
    • Title: Times Literary Supplement
    • PubPlace: London
    • Publisher: Times London
    • Date: 1902-1968