The diary reproduced in these pages came into my possession in the course of a long-ago expedition of my own, the details of which shall – like this diary – be published after my death. The original is in very poor condition, for reasons which shall soon become evident, and I have endeavoured to the best of my abilities to restore those passages which are difficult to decipher, or else – where this is impossible – to mark the omission.
It is written in Italian – the translation is my own. A creeping stain (I hope it is water) has rendered the dates illegible. But we may reasonably deduce from the content that the author was a Jesuit, one of those who emigrated to South America from Europe in the course of the nineteenth century; that he was not an old man; that, although a priest, he deserves our pity.
Brigadier Sir George A. M. F. MacPhail
Drumfeannagan, 18 June 1932
© Alix Montague 2015