14 NOVEMBER 1970, Page 20

As Dr Johnson should have said

Sir: A letter (31 October) quotes Dr Johnson's famous dictum that— 'patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel'—by way of retort to sentiments expressed by Peregrine Worsthorne.

But what Dr Johfison forgot to add, or perhaps must be excused for not knowing, is that patriotism is also the first resort of a gentle- man.

F. E. Isaac 124 Lexham Gardens, London w8