Beechnuts at Darwin
If you are looking at this atlas, you may be a reader of Raverat’s book and wondered, as did I, about the final illustration: someone in a broad brimmed hat being pushed down the road in a wheel chair with the dog, Sancho, trotting at their side. I’d assumed it represented an elderly relation until I read Keynes’s book. She explains about her sister’s stroke which occurred as she was finishing her illustrations for the book. Keynes describes the clergyman’s hat Raverat used to wear and how a series of Swiss nurses looked after her. This figure in the wheelchair matches the description Keynes gives of Gwen in her final years and, though Keynes says she could no longer draw, I assume she may have managed to make this as a final piece. It seems infinitely touching.
© B.A.Zanditon 2014
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