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'A German Idyll'
Page Count
Word Count
Golden Cockerel Press
Publication Year
Document Types
Character: Richardson
Original Manuscript (mss)
Travel, Germany, Youth

Waltham Saint Lawrence, Berkshire: Golden Cockerel Press, 1932 (April 26). Wood engravings by Lynton Lamb.
Dedication: 'To Karl.'

An account of Bates's trip to Germany with Charles Lahr and others in 1927, including Karl's (Charles's) reunion with family in the town of Iben, feasting and drinking at the local inn, and a hesitant romance between Richardson (Bates) and the landlord's beautiful daughter Anna. The travelers depart, Richardson reflecting that Anna had 'appeared briefly and wonderfully and had vanished, like the rainbow. He knew he would never see her again and he wondered if he would remember her...He wondered also if she would remember him.'

Rhys Davies confirms Bates's account, adding that 'H.E. Bates, offering to escort a girl home, found her watchful aunt dogging their long walk at a discreet distance' (Print of a Hare's Foot, New York: Dodd, Mead, 1969, p. 172). Bates discusses the trip and the story in The Blossoming World (pp. 54-57, p. 117) and used the trip for 'The Bath' (a first-person narration) and possibly also 'A German Incident'.

Two drafts of a manuscript, dated 1931, are held in the collection of the Lilly Library, Indiana University, USA. (

Published in a limited edition and then later in the collections The Woman Who Had Imagination and Other Stories (1934), Thirty-One Selected Tales (1947), Selected Stories (1957).


  • New Statesman and Nation (October 1, 1932, p. 380, attached)
  • Times Literary Supplement (June 16, 1932, p. 448, attached)


The below reviews and articles are available in PDF format.