11 NOVEMBER 1949, Page 16

The Blot in the Scutcheon

SIR.—From the Spectator I derive much pleasure. With one exception nothing offends. In a colony with a poor press and narrow editorial comments in the daily papers, it is a relief to take up Friday's Spectator, only seven days after its publication in London, and read of the more important issues in the world beyond our borders. For the leisure moments Harold Nicolson delights with his Marginal Comment, written with such enviable command of English. The book reviews greatly assist in choosing the all-too-rarely purchased book. Virginia Graham has inspired me to collect and index her reviews in the hope that some of the better films will come our way. Peter Fleming and Custos remind us of what we arc missing and have missed. Only Janus is out of place. I cannot but ask, "Is his effort really necessary ? " In his column some paragraphs are sometimes worth reading, but for the most part they are pompous and uninteresting. His petty infuriations exasperate. I care not one jot for his recent complex over alibis, nor for his anxieties over professorships and/or " bogus" degrees, still less for his trouble with Kipling's "'Absent Minded Beggar " (October 21st). If Janus cannot fill his column with better stuff than this—and his reactions to plays, books and films, reportable elsewhere, will not do—then please cherchez un autre.—Yours &c., P.O. Box 5o6, Salisbury, S. Rhodesia. P. R. GRESHAM.