Friend and critic
Maurice Magnus (1876-1920) was an American traveller and writer whom Lawrence met in Florence in 1919. Magnus, a colourful character, whose life ended in debts and suicide, had served in the French Foreign Legion and left an unpublished manuscript of his experience.
Photograph of Maurice Magnus in 1914 [La L 11/5]
Lawrence agreed to write a 'Memoir' of Magnus to accompany its publication. His outspoken and intemperate criticism of aspects of Magnus's character brought hostile comment. The manuscript, with extensive cancellation and revisions, shows even less restraint or sympathy for Magnus (La L 11/1).
A rare example of Lawrence as biographer, its acquisition for the Collections in 1991 was supported by the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Victoria and Albert Purchase Fund.
Manuscript of Lawrence's memoir (detail) [La L 11/1]
DH Lawrence at Nottingham home