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J M Barrie To George Llewelyn Davies - 1912

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Letter from J M Barrie to George Llewelyn Davies at Eton, 29 May 1912. Not transcribed in Peter's Morgue, so alas no commentary from him.



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3, Adelphi Terrace House,
Strand, W.C.

May 29, 1912

My dear George,
This confounded excitement about the XI has rather caught me and I have begun to dream about it. Mix them, curve them, swerve them, break them, and if he still hits it, kick them. I can't think of any better tip. I wish I could tie Barnes* to your wrist. I wish I was as good at bowling as at the idiotic thing flinging rings on to watches. At this I am an extraordinary adept. At ‘Shakespeare’s England’ I won four watches (really good ladies watches) in this way. I had to leave the place because I became so famous at it. “The gentleman in the straw hat what has already won six — that's him”. Crowds gazed at me. I never knew what fame was before.
Do you remember how we plugged at the baskets of oranges at Olympia one Christmas? Only a few years ago, but you were no older than Michael is now.
He & I went to the Olivers** for the week end. The pond has been stocked with rainbow trout & he caught at least 50, about 4 oz on average. They were too guileless however to make it much sport. Fished with bread on end of hook. Also bird-nest, &c.
Your loving
JMB

* Sydney Barnes (1873-1967), English professional cricketer, considered to be one of the greatest ever bowlers.
** The Frederick Scott Olivers, near Reading, old friends of the Llewelyn Davies family.

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