July 24th Saturday . My 42nd Birthday.

Laura gave me a small Georgian wooden tea-tray & a Stuart table-[RG]knife & fork, ivory & inlaid silver handles. Alix & Harry an old Enlgish bow1 & a quiver of arrows. Karl & Alan a bottle of Kümmel2. Margaret Russell sent [sic: send] birthday cards; a miniature [sic: minituare] desk book-case, with drawing pins, paper clips etc. Honor a greeting telegram. James & Mary brought me sherry. Everyone working hard, cutting sandwiches etc: ×××× [indecipherable] I ×××× [indecipherable] met[RG] two buses for Mary Lucy (first time of meeting) but she came on the third. Balloons, fireworks, the drawing-room[RG] fireplace disguised with greenery. Arguments on how not to string a bow.
I finished Chap [Chapter] 1 of Belisarius & began going over it: retiring temporarily to bed with toothache.
A game playing in a pegged-out maze in the garden of redisposing 18 lines of Lady of Shallot3 from single lines on cards. Talk & games till [until] 1.30 when L & I tidied up. Comic academic[RG] disputations between James & Alan on the immorality of a man on a desert island. Serious discussion of the Permanance theory as opposed to Buchmannite change & on the condition of poets when not writing poems.

Editorial Notes

1yew KG
2a distilled, caraway-flavoured liqueur eds.
3poem by Lord Alfred Tennyson eds.

Hands Referenced

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

People Mentioned

  • Laura

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

    Kemp, Alix
    Married to poet Harry Kemp. The couple shared a house with Graves and Riding in Ewhurst, Surrey (1937). eds (RPG 277); also referred to as Frau Eierman by RG eds. see Diary August 30, 1936
  • Alan

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

    Russell, Margaret
    House-keeper L.R. & R.G. had had in London. 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.
  • 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)
  • 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).
  • James

    Reeves, James
    Schoolmaster, writer and Poet. Friend of Jacob Bronowski. W.G./ K.G.; m. to Mary Phillips; daughter Stella born June 14, 1938 eds.
  • Mary

    Reeves, Mary
    wife of James Reeves; daughter Stella born 14 June, 1938 eds.
  • Mary Lucy

    Lucy, Mary
    Visited R.G. and L.R. at Ewhurst. An admirer of both Graves and Riding, but her marital problems brought tensions to their household. See diary entry January 2, 1938 (and K.G. note).


    • Title: Count Belisarius [1938]
    • Author: Graves, Robert
    • PubPlace: London
    • Publisher: Cassell
    • Idno: A47
    • Date: 1937-07-21