51. H. F. Scott-Stokes to Harrod, 11 May 45



11 May 45

My dear Roy,

Your kind & patient letter, written on the 25th anniversary of my betrothal, reached me in this new world of `peace' today. I fully appreciate the truth & importance of what I understand you to say, & have asked PHIPP, the W.C.L.F. paid Secretary, what he has to offer you - I hope something possible will emerge. It is indeed important.

But, for me - listen. 25 years ago I gave up all the larger hopes, in the hope of making one young woman happy. Which continues. Today, I give up all the larger hopes in the hope of doing, well enough, for a little longer, the one thing I am paid to do; & paid very well, as you remarked 2 years ago. But just as then I could get some other man on work, & hope to have prepared the way for him, so now - I could take a week, or a fortnight, or 3 weeks; I cannot `in honour & conscience' contemplate giving up my obligations to the particular people to whom I am `obligated' while I live, & am able to work. And if I did, my family would starve, & my obligations to them could not be honoured. That is my position. I wondered 25 years ago, if the world might not lose something by my choice. I wonder still - with more humility & less assurance. But even if it were so, my duty is clear. Good hunting!


  1. 1. British Library, Harrod Collection, Folder Add. 71189, fol. 84 (transcribed by Charity Scott Stokes)

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