Felicia Browne

Letter from Felicia Browne to Elizabeth Watson

31 July 1936

In Tate Britain

Created by
Felicia Browne 1904–1936
Letter from Felicia Browne to Elizabeth Watson
31 July 1936
Document - correspondence
Tate Archive
Purchased by Tate Archive from Jim Sproule, Lin Sproule and Felicia France, November 2010.
TGA 201023/2/6


Addressed from Barcelona. In this letter Browne gives an account of her activities over the preceding days, including her attempts to track down her companions Edith Bone ('Ed') and 'Claud' who had failed to return from a trip to Lerida. She tells Elizabeth Watson about her train being held up by a car of anarchists [possibly on the way to Saragossa or the Pyrenees] and having to travel back to Lerida, eventually ending up in Casa del Pueblo and getting a pass to go to the front. She emphasises her reluctance to leave Spain but the difficulty of finding work there without speaking Spanish or Catalan. She gives an account of her first few days in Barcelona helping Bone and accidentally ending up on the edge of the battlefield Plaza Cataluna. She comments on the calmness of the city and sense of efficiency and order away from the front line. Browne mentions other artists who have joined the militia referring specifically to two men called Gomez and Lamolla [Antonio Garcia Lamolla]. She talks of her sense of Spain being 'definitely a country for painting' and mentions having made a number of sketches. She also tells Watson about an encounter with the British Consul (following Bone having crashed their car) and his advice to her to stay indoors whilst the fighting goes on.

There are references throughout this letter to Browne's repeated efforts to join the militia but being turned down due to a shortage of weapons.

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