HILAIRE BELLOC TO A.P. HERBERT ON SOCIAL REFORM OF PRIVATELY HELD ENTERPRISES “EVERY YARD OF ENGLISH RAILWAY PAYS A LITTLE, IF A SHILLING A YEAR, TO THE LAWYERS OR TO THEM WHO INHERITED OR PILCHED THEIR MONEY.”
BELLOC, HILAIRE. (1870-1953). Franco-English writer, historian, orator, poet, sailor, satirist, and political activist; his Catholic faith had a strong effect on his works; wrote over 150 books, the subjects ranging from warfare to poetry to the many current topics of his day; he has been called one of the ‘Big Four of Edwardian Letters’, along with H. G. Wells, George Bernard Shaw, and G. K. Chesterton, all of whom he debated; his association with Chesterton, [and Shaw] was coined “Chesterbelloc”. Uncommon Autograph Letter Signed, “HB,” on his imprinted Kings Land, Shipley, Horsham black-bordered mourning stationery. Two pages, quarto. No place. [Horsham], October 10, 1933. To “My dear [Alan P.] Herbert.” Herbert (1890-1971) was an English humorist, novelist, playwright, and law reformist. Belloc writes:
“My dear Herbert – That’s indeed kind of you! It’s just got here and found it & I Browsed it at a gulp & am vastly Refreshed. Your gift is unique & the sudden unexpected – e.g. — “As we all shall be soon” in p. 20 – are like currents…. Its an amusing thing to contemplate what the recovering lawyers guild will look like in fifty years. It will still be a strong thing, but stricken. What a run it has had for its money & what a lot of money for its runs. Every yard of English railway pays a little if a shilling a year to the lawyers or to them who inherited or pilched their money. For the Lawyer’s … 1 Pound a year, or a little more. There is no more to take in that line, but they will still have, for a long time, the income paid out of all the taxes. Haddod has 3 qualities & wealth, courage and inflexibility (or continuity) may he like. Thank you again! I read hardly anything, but really of this kind is different! Yours, H.B.
I’m not in town for a fortnight -but I shall insist on drinking with you then. I shall show you a time.”
Very fine condition and content, clearly illustrating Belloc’s political point of view and activism developed after WWI, in the early 1930’s.