CollectionGB 0231 University of Aberdeen, Special Collections
Ref NoMS 3290/2/218
TitleLetter from Amelia Nyasa Laws to her relatives
Date2 December 1917
Extent3 sheets
DescriptionLetter from Amelia Nyasa Laws, 7 Via Venti Settembre, Rome, to her relatives, regarding Communion Sunday; Uncle's sudden concern over the Genoa notice and Amelia's time wasted seeing to it; death of Rev. Mr. H.J. Piggott ('the gall had spread through the body') and funeral with viewing of the body; there were several pastors present at the funeral, Landels, Whittinghill and Italians, and Mr. Burgess directed it; the weather was poor, but cleared, and Uncle and Aunt went well wrapped up; problems with rationing for bread, macaroni and rice - there are not enough ration tickets to go round; the queues are bad and even when a baker is allocated there is not always enough bread, as the Government distributes grain equally to bakers, without regard to their number of customers; the Communion bread was sour last month; the food exists, but is not available; Maria and Ernesta will be able to eat the entire household's ration of macaroni on their own, but have offered their rice ration in exchange; the gas is also rationed to strict hours at present; all heating is to be cut off, and petroleum is very hard to find; these rules might never be applied, though they have distressed Uncle; the poor and the old suffer most; visit of the Elliotts to tea, but such occasions must become rarer as food is hard to find; Uncle is beginning to realise the strain and has not proposed an At Home for some time; Uncle wanted a meeting of the Board of Management to print an appeal for church funds, but the Board itself is depleted, being down to Hale Benton, Dr. Brock, Mr. Gibson and Dr. Rossi, now that Mr. Bragg is paralysed, and the appeal would only be directed at them anyway, as they are the only people permanently in Rome; the season is bound to be bad financially; Uncle has not mentioned the war office as the Committee would probably decide to clear the debt by selling off the Roman property; if that has to happen Uncle would prefer to direct the money into the Roman station, rather than have it go for general funds; Bani's son was one of the 6,000 killed when the Germans 'who, once through the narrow pass, poured in 50 to 1 massacring the Italians with their mitrailleuses. 4,000 cavalry shared the same fate'; at the moment, however, the Italians and Allies are holding the line at the Piave, despite leaving officers too long at Padua; the enemy aircraft have been dropping propaganda leaflets encouraging the Italians to leave the 'control of the English' and surrender to Germany; 'the children in the R.C. schools are being told by the nuns that "the Kaiser will soon be here and then the Pope will be King"'; account of the dedication of a family servant at Udine.
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