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Letter from Charles Doughty-Wylie to Gertrude Bell

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Reference code
Bell, Gertrude Margaret Lowthian
Wylie, Charles Hotham Montagu Doughty-
Person(s) mentioned
Wylie, Lilian [Judith] Doughty-
Creation Date
Extent and medium
1 letter plus envelope, paper

8.9806034, 38.7577605

4 October,
British Legation,
Adis Ababa.
My dear Gertrude.

Your most welcome letters – I thank you for them – but today I can’t write – 1000 things – my wife & Sandford go tomorrow – I shall inhabit this beastly gloomy house alone – and our little cottage is already dismantled sold up & finished – or rather woe be to us finishing – Everything to pay pack & settle – I wish I thought I was going to follow – but it seems “settle” – It won’t be gay all alone, and I shall have all the office & accounts & every sort of little thing to do – for there is a good deal to keep up here –

At times I bitterly curse Thesiger – He is now interpreter to General Pulteney but is that a job for a Minister? – for which I am shut up – Hang the man – He sold my horses even my wife’s gun without leave & kept the money, bagged my wine & stores without leaving even a list – all that is nothing more than unusual to my mind – but this –

Well my dear & famous traveller – and now you lecture – and well you do it I know and much good with it.

The war seems to me to go well but you know so much more of it than I do – and it costs us dear & Germany dearer.

We have no answer from the Red X yet (which counts I mean) & none yet from Paris but still it is better that my wife should go – because for the journey down, Sandford will be with her - & it’s a torturous way for a woman alone – first day relays of my best ponies take them 45 miles.

Tomorrow first of all Lij Yasu is to come & give the Red X medals honestly earned by midwifery etc by certain Abyssinian Princesses & others. It has done good –

I told you of the hospital. Its impossible to tell from here how far one more will carry it – I mean how long - £5000 0 at least 4 months – but where it will be France Belgium? I have written to Tyrrell asking him to write her an introduction to the Paris Embassy. I don’t know any of them I think, & they van be useful in finding the right “autoritès sanitaires”.

As for the Abyssinians they do nothing – but condole on the death of so many hundreds of thousands of Christians – openly - & secretly rejoice that the white world fights itself.

I shan’t do anything useful will there comes a finish.
Are letters censored? Sometimes it is & will be in my mind to write you.


IIIF Manifest