Mahatma Letter No. 133

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Quick Facts
People involved
Written by: H. P. Blavatsky
Received by: A. P. Sinnett
Sent via: unknown
Written on: unknown 
Received on: November 9, 1884 – see below
Other dates: posted on November 8, 1884
Sent from: on shipboard to India
Received at: London
Via: posted from Algiers

This is Letter No. 133 in The Mahatma Letters to A. P. Sinnett, 4th chronological edition. It corresponds to Letter No. 137 in Barker numbering. See below for Context and background.

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Page 1 transcription, image, and notes

Clan Drummond: Algiers.

Sunday 8th.

My dear Mr. Sinnett,

You see I am as good as my word. Last night as we were hopelessly tossed about and pitched in our Clan wash-tub Djual K. put in an appearance and asked in his Master's name if I would send you a chit. I said I would. He then asked me to prepare some paper — which I had not. He then said any would do. I then proceeded to ask some from a passenger not having Mrs. Holloway to furnish me with. Lo! I wish those passengers, who quarrel with us every day about the possibility of phenomena could see what was taking place in my cabin on the foot of my berth! How D.K.'s hand, as real as life, was impressing the letter at his Master's dictation which came out in relief between the wall and my legs. He told me to read the letter but I am no wiser for it. I understand very well that it was all probation and all for the best; but it is devilish hard for me to understand why it should all be performed over my long suffering back. She is in correspondence with Myers and the Gebhard's and many others. You will see what splatters I will receive as an effect of the causes produced by that probation business. I wish I had never seen the woman. Such treachery, such a deceit I would never have dreamt of. I was also a chela and guilty of more than one flapdoodle; but I would have thought as soon of murdering physically a man as to murder morally my friends as she has. Had not Master brought about the explanation I would have gone away leaving



  • wash-tub refers to the ship in which Madame Blavatsky was traveling.
  • a chit is a short official note, memorandum, or voucher. The origin of this term is Anglo-Indian, and it is derived from the Hindi ciṭṭhī meaning "note, pass."
  • flapdoodle is an expression HPB frequently used to mean nonsense.

Page 2

a nice memory of myself in Mrs. Sinnett's and your hearts. We have on board Mrs. (Major) Burton of Simla. She left it the day before I came and has been always anxious since, to meet me. She wants to join us and is a charming little woman. We have several Anglo Indians and all kindly disposed. The steamer is a rolling wash-tub and the steward an infamy. We are all starving, and live upon our own tea and biscuits. Do write a word to Port Said, poste restante. We shall remain in Egypt perhaps a fortnight. It all depends on Olcott's letters and news from Adyar. Can't write for the rolling. Love to all.

Yours ever truly

H. P. Blavatsky.



  • poste restante, or general delivery, is a service where the post office holds mail until the addressee comes to claim it.

Context and background

This letter was written from Algiers, while H.P.B. was en route from England to India. She returned by way of Egypt (it was in Cairo that H.P.B. learned the very damaging facts about the Coulombs.) The letter is an introduction to the next one (Letter No. 134).

Physical description of letter

The original is in the British Library, Folio 3. George Linton and Virginia Hanson described the letter in this way:

In HPB's handwriting on both sides of a single sheet.[1]

Publication history

Commentary about this letter


  1. George E. Linton and Virginia Hanson, eds., Readers Guide to The Mahatma Letters to A. P. Sinnett (Adyar, Chennai, India: Theosophical Publishing House, 1972), 204.