CollectionGB 0231 University of Aberdeen, Special Collections
Ref NoMS 3290/2/100
TitleLetter from Amelia Nyasa Laws to her relatives
Date26 December 1915
Extent3 sheets
DescriptionLetter from Amelia Nyasa Laws, 7 Via Venti Settembre, Rome, to her relatives, complaining of the dull services for Christmas with a small, lacklustre congregation; a visitor the previous week blamed the organist, which did not please Amelia; many of the congregation turn up late; the Bentons' baby is not being treated sensibly; Mrs. Benton is selfish and untidy; the Bentons gave the manse a large mince pie for Christmas; fights between Maria's nieces and nephew; the younger one loves going to church and they have to watch that she does not go on her own (at four and a half) in case she should 'fall into the hands of the priests'; Mr. Green's little daughter has the wrong end of the story of Noah's Ark, and thinks that the 'naughty men were put into the boat to make them sick'; she has sailed across the Channel; Uncle has managed a temporary adjustment at Leghorn; Aunt has recovered from her fall but is tired; Aunt and Amelia gave Uncle a large platinotype photograph of the Bossons Glacier at Chamonix for Christmas, with which he is delighted, though at first he thought it was a roll of blotting paper and refused to unwrap it; writing sermons is a trial to him, and Maria finds it very amusing and imitates him; poor collections still; Lieutenant Pender's visit to show them his photographs of Malta and Syracuse, an entertaining visit; Mrs. Burgess has visited to order portions from the Bible Society; Lieutenant Pender does not give respect to his elders where he does not feel it is deserved, which does not please Uncle but is the colonial way; nevertheless the Lieutenant is properly respectful and grateful when something is done for him, even if unsuccessfully; difficult to get back to the front from Malta; home mails for the officers have finally come through; cheerful but patriotic conversation with Pender; reflections on fellow officers pampered in youth who cannot take the strain; the flies at the Peninsula [the Dardanelles] were so thick that food has to move constantly while being eaten; the cloudburst at Suvla washed away the stores and the stretcher-cases lying on the beach; details of the mistakes made in the campaign; Mrs. Burgess has been entertaining Tommies, who say they have been put in accommodation at Nomentana, considered too poor for Italians so given to British troops; Mrs. Burgess surprised at their asking for hymns to be played for them; Amelia asks that none of this letter should be used in publication.
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