Mrs. Alice Cleather, a student of Theosophy during H.P.B.'s residence in
London, wrote about the opening of the Esoteric Section in these words:
"In Lucifer for October, 1888, a notice had appeared to the
effect that an 'Esoteric Section of the Theosophical Society' was to be formed under
H.P.B., and that those who wished to join and abide by its Rules should send in their
names. Mrs. Chowne and I . . . at once responded; but for some time we heard
nothing. Then, one day, Mrs. Chowne came down to Harrow to see me. . . bringing the
E.S.T. Pledge from H.P.B. for me to write out and sign. She said that H.P.B. had
told her that, on our sending in our signed Pledges, each one would be 'tested' (i.e.,
'examined for fitness') on inner planes, by the Master. . . ." (H.P.
Blavatsky As I Knew Her by Alice Leighton Cleather, p. 15)
A facsimile of the original edition of this four-page "pledge
folder" is reproduced here for the first time.