Beatrix Potter’s letter reveals author’s peeves

November 7th, 2010 - 3:09 pm ICT by ANI  

London, Nov 07 (ANI): Decades old letters written by children’s author Beatrix Potter have revealed that her disgust at how society was altering in the run-up to the Second World War.

In an October 1938 letter, the 72-year-old creator of ‘Peter Rabbit’ tells of her dismay at the decline of “strong, honestly made handicrafts”.

“Labour- saving and laziness are nearly allied. It seems impossible to find apprentice blacksmiths now,” the Daily Express quoted her as writing in the letter.

“There are still a few good wheelwrights left but I observe with disgust the increasing use of rubber motor tyres on carts and wheelbarrows,” she wrote.

In the same letter, she also rants about the effects bad teaching can have on pupils.

She tells how a five-year-old shepherd’s child sent her a crayon picture of two lambs, accurately drawn.

Six months later she asked for another and got one done at school. She was so angry with the natural talent “wiped out by teaching” that she threw it on the fire.

In a second letter, written in November 1939, Beatrix’s mood is darkened by the outbreak of war.

She wrote, “It’s been a lovely autumn but it’s not a cheerful time.”

The letters are part of an archive of papers and artwork that is expected to fetch up to 8,000 pounds when it goes under the hammer at Bonhams auction house in London later this month. (ANI)

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