Unseen Bloomsbury Group letters reveal fears over death of Virginia Woolf

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London, Mar 19 (ANI): Rare and intimate letters from the Bloomsbury Group have been released for the first time, documenting the members' fears over the suicide of Virginia Woolf.

The controversial circle of intellectuals, which was almost as well known for its romantic entanglements as its literary output, numbered Woolf, EM Forster and Lytton Strachey amongst its members.

The letters are part of an archive, belonging to King's College, Cambridge University.

The archive is made up of thousands of pages of previously unseen correspondence as well as 30 albums of photography.nd the members, believed to be very close to each other, have discussed Virginia Woolf's final disappearance in 1941 and the suicide of Dora Carrington, the actress.

The collection of letters and photographs - many of which are nude - belonged to the literary estates of Frances Partridge and Rosamond Lehmann, the writers, who were members of the Bloomsbury set.

Clive Bell, the husband of Woolf's sister Vanessa wrote to Frances Partridge on April 3 1941, discussing the novelist's final disappearance aged 59.

"I'm not sure whether The Times will by now have announced that Virginia is missing," the Telegraph quoted him as saying.

"I'm afraid there is not the slightest doubt that she drowned herself about noon last Friday - Her stick and footprints were found by the edge of the river.

"It became evident some weeks ago that she was in for another of those long and agonizing breakdowns of which she had had several already," he added.

Woolf's body was eventually found on April 18 1941. She had filled the pockets of her overcoat with stones and walked in the River Ouse near her Sussex home.

"The Bloomsbury Group, for all its controversy, was a group that people aspired to be in. They had an intellectual freedom. The letters show that they didn't just have witty after-dinner conversations but that they discussed real issues of the day. However, they also show that they were affected by love and loss and war in the same way that ordinary people were," said Patricia McGuire, an archivist at King's College Cambridge.

The Bloomsbury Group, many of whom had attended Trinity or King's College at Cambridge, shocked society with its members' bisexual inter-marital affairs. (ANI)

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