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Tag Archives: London

An unsigned note

Oldie readers will need no reminding that the heart of John le Carré’s ‘Circus’ – indeed, of his entire ouevre – is one George Smiley OBE. From Call for the Dead (in ’61) to the classic ‘Karla trilogy’, and on til (almost) the collapse of Communism, he battled foe and, sometimes, friend, quite often in [...]

NEWS AT A GLANCE

. By a recent edict, the cultivation of opium in China must cease entirely by the year 1917 The crop is reduced by one-tenth each year, and all those using opium in 1917 will be banished. — The Nelson Evening Mail, June 14 1907 . The Sports Direct on Baker Street has actually closed down. A [...]

NEWS AT A GLANCE

. A lady of limited means residing in the country says that her garden clothes herself and her daughter. — The Nelson Evening Mail, August 31 1906 . There is a typo in Punjabi birth certificates. Since January 2013, a Russian cruise ship has been drifting unmanned in the North Atlantic. Toxic trolls are pushing Vicky [...]

NEWS AT A GLANCE

. Fifty-one per cent of the foreigners in England live in London. — The Nelson Evening Mail, July 28 1906 . International rugby union referee Nigel Owens wears Superman pants while he’s officiating. The Iraqi army is about to defeat Islamic State. There’s no playbook for how to be a guy. In 1947 a United States [...]

NEWS AT A GLANCE

. A man is generally at his heaviest in his 40th year. — The Nelson Evening Mail, October 10 1906 . The Museum of Emotions in London has a game with yes/no answers. Adolf Hitler fixed the Nazi Party registrations, to make it seem they had more members than they did. The endnotes to David Foster [...]

Brief lives: Samuel Derrick

Samuel Derrick (1724-69), was an Irish writer, friend of Dr Johnson, Boswell, and Tobias Smollett, and master of the ceremonies at both Bath and Tunbridge Wells. He published, among other works: The Dramatic Censor, No. 1; Sylla, a dramatic entertainment, from the French of Frederick II of Prussia; A Voyage from the Moon, from the [...]

The Pikey Laureate introduces Whitman to the high street

O ye women who go down unto the Co-Op in your onesies: What do you think you look like!?

St Paul’s (Knightsbridge) and the Great War

A blog piece for Culture House on the Royal Naval mobilisation of the Rev Wilfrid Hannay Gibbins, and the parish mags of a church in West London over the course of the First World War. – For The Spectator

Eight debut novels

Currently sitting at 12 to 1 for this year’s Booker Prize, first-time novelist Paul Kingsnorth has set the cat among the pigeons through the disarmingly original expedient of submitting his offering in a fictional language. Composed in what Kingsnorth calls the ‘shadow tongue’ of ‘eald anglisc’, The Wake (Unbound 365pp £16.99) explores one angle of [...]

Paul, mate, you’ve got red on yer.

Interview with Paul Bettany, vis-a-vis his tricky and unglamorous role in Broken Lines. – For theartsdesk