‘I’d like to see that Delphic festival. Greece is the third in order of European nations which I would enjoy visiting—England and Italy being the other two. Greece contains some remarkable survivals of classic myth among the peasantry—I heard a highly illuminating lecture on the subject a year ago by Sir Rennell Rodd, a lifelong student of neo-Hellenic folklore. Much remains to be excavated in Greece—indeed, it is possible that art will receive a new stimulus from what archaeolgy will unearth during the next ten or twenty years’.
‘Emotionally, I endorse religion, and people the fields and streams and groves with the Grecian deities and local spirits of old—for at heart I am a pantheistic pagan of the old tradition which Christianity has never reached’.
Epistle to Woodburn Harris, 1929
‘The cringing Semitic slave-cult of Christianity became thrust upon our virile, ebullient Western stock through a series of grotesque historic accidents’.
Selected Letters, III, p. 45
‘If a Christian tells me he has felt the reality of his Jesus or Jahveh, I can reply that I have seen hoofed Pan and the sisters of the Hesperian Phaethusa… My pompous book called Poemata Minora, written when I was eleven, was dedicated “To the Gods, Heroes and Ideals of the Ancients”, and harped in disillusioned, world-weary tones on the sorrow of the pagan robbed of his antique pantheon… I was, and still am, pagan to the core’.
1 reply on “H.P. Lovecraft’s letters”
Lovecraft was a contemporary of Robert E. Howard, another American writer with a passion for the Ancient World. I like his fictional character, Conan the Barbarian, and the ethos of the Cimmerian people, who worship the grim, loveless god Crom.
The only beautiful pagan art Mr. Lovecraft would find in 20thC Greece was in the ruins. Orthodox churches and iconography are ugly. Also, the country was a turkic shithole back then, as is it today.