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Teresa

1845 - 1929

Teresa (originally Augusta Roife) was apparently friends with Alma from their convent days at Claydon, Suffolk. In 1884 when Max and Alma Théon knew each other well enough to go to theatre together, Teresa was their chaperone (this being of course the Victorian era, when the code of morals was very strict) She was also one of the two witnesses at their wedding. The three of them went to live in N°ll Belgrave Road, St. John's Wood, Marylebone, which was Alma's residence. Teresa, when she turned forty, in July 1885, was allowed a year's trial under Théon.

In December 1887, the Théons left France for Algiers. Three weeks later Teresa and her three dogs joined them in Oran. After they they came to live in Zarif, Tlemcen, in 1889, Miss Teresa became their devoted English secretary.

Teresa's abilities at translation were not the best. This was the case even when they began producing the Cosmic Review:

"The Cosmic Review was a monthly. In it Théon expounded his philosophy, but the greater part was contributed by Madame Théon. "It was dictated in English by Théon's wife while she was in trance," said Mother to Pavitra and Satprem one day in 1960. In those days she met Satprem in Pavitra's office on the first floor. "And there was a woman there, she too English, who claimed to know French like a French-man. She would say, 'I never use a dictionary, there's no need of a dictionary.' And then she would turn out such translations! She made all the classical mistakes in translating the English words that should not be translated that way." Mother was referring to Miss Teresa, secretary and companion to the Théons. "Then that was sent to me in Paris for correcting. It was literally impossible."
Mirra the Occultist

The numerous entries in Teresa's diary record of the comings and goings and doings of Théon and Théona (as she came to call Alma) and their guests. After one outing with Théon (a very bad driver), Mirra and her husband the painter Henri Morriset:

"September 13, 1906 - Went with Théon & M. & Madame Morisset to the Cork Forest."

Two years later, after the tragic death of his wife, Théon's only companion was his devoted secretary. Five years later Teresa's diary records entries, including a car accident in which Théon was badly injured

"1913, October 18 - Dear Théon has gone to Alger about autos.
"1913, October 24 - Théon came home accident with the auto."
"1913, November 1 - Doctor has now set the fracture, so dear Théon will suffer less & less now, I hope, for he has suffered terribly."

Then two months later, she wrote:

"1914, January - Théon left his rooms for the first time since his accident & walked in the court (with crutches)."

During the four years of war they remained in Tlemcen apparently. Their last visit abroad, almost one year after the armistice, was recorded in Teresa's diary:

"1919, October 10 - Here we are [in Paris]... after a very long & troublesome journey
"1920, June 3 - We start for Tlemcen
"1920, June 8 - Got home at last"

By this time they were both well into their seventies and must have found travelling more and more difficult. If one fell ill, which happened, the other was unable to do any nursing. Théon died on March 1927; Teresa survived him by perhaps two years. When she too passed away, the authorities put up the property, which was in Madame Théon's name, to auction since there were no legal heirs.


Mirra the Occultist

References

printed reference Sujata Nahar, Mother's Chronicles, book three - Mirra the Occultist, external link Institut de Recherches Évolutives, Paris


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page by M.Alan Kazlev
page uploaded 23 December 2000, last modified 9 September 2005