Kate Allan

The online diary of Kate Allan, author

Saturday, March 12, 2005

'Artefacts! I want Artefacts!'

said the lady from a major London auction house. We were stood in the basement room of a private members club in the West End at a drinks party last week. ‘The Lady Soldier… come on, there must be artefacts.’

‘It’s a fiction book,’ I said, trying to be helpful.

‘But you said it was based on some true examples. And so, what remains? Uniforms? Diaries?’

‘Well,' I replied, 'Nadezhda Durova, the lady who was in the Russian cavalry had a diary.’

Her eyes lit up. ‘You have it?’

‘No….' I felt a bit useless. After all, what could remain? Was it possible that Dr James Barry's surgical paraphernalia is now lying unknown in some dusty vault somewhere? How amazing it would it be to indeed have artefacts. And these were the very bandages she used to bind her breasts…


  • At 3:37 pm, Blogger Alex Bordessa said…

    I sort of understand her overwhelming interest in artefacts (since I'm an archaeologist!)

    I guess it's to do with her preferred method of 'touching' the past - quite literally in her case! Artefacts inspire, but they are a beginning of the story, not an end.


Post a Comment

<< Home