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Libraries & Collections > MRBR > Exhibitions > Online Exhibitions > A Pen and a Press of Her Own

Woolf in the World: A Pen and a Press of Her Own
Lytton Strachey at Garsington Manor

This letter was written on Garsington Manor stationery where Strachey was a guest along with the “amusing and sufficiently mysterious” Katherine Mansfield. According to Strachey, Mansfield “has an ugly impassive mask of a face—cut in wood, with brown hair and brown eyes very far apart; and a sharp and slightly vulgarly-fanciful intellect sitting behind it.” Apparently, Mansfield spoke with enthusiasm about the Voyage Out to Strachey.

Strachey letter to Woolf Strachey letter to Woolf Strachey letter to Woolf Strachey letter to Woolf
Lytton Strachey. Letter to Virginia Woolf, 17 July 1916.

Strachey’s letter includes an entertaining description of a typical gathering at Garsington, the home of the famous literary hostess Lady Ottoline Morrell:

There were 16 souls here for the week-end that’s just over: from Friday onwards the door seemed to open every two hours and new arrivals appeared in batches of five or seven. I at last lost count and consciousness, going off into a cosmic trance, from which I was only awakened by the frenzied strains of the pianola playing desperate rag-time, to which thirty feet were executing a frantic concatenation of thuds.

Presented by Frances Hooper ’14.
Mortimer Rare Book Room, Smith College

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