17 DECEMBER 1943, Page 14


SIR,—Your tribute to Dr. G. G. Coulton in a review of his Fourscore Years is as deserved as it is charming. Although it is true that his "learned and authoritative works are mainly books for scholars," it is hardly true that he has not found a wider public. It is true of such a work as the voluminous, and, pace Sheridan, luminous Five Centuries of Religion. (Perhaps you will pardon the anachronism of the reference to Sheridan, who, incidentally, was referring to Gibbon.) I am sure (and I think his publishers would bear me out) that Dr. Coulton has a considerable following among intelligent but non- specialising readers. His superbly annotated anthologies, Social Life in Britain and Life in the Middle Ages must have been read by many thousands ; and the same applies to one of his latest works in the same field, Medieval Panorama, a work I will dare to call great, combining as it does rare scholarship and a magnificently vivid sense of history, the whole suffused with a sunlit wisdom and a passion for truth. It is worth noting that the book was published when he was eighty. He is truly a great scholar, a great humanist and a great Christian.—I am

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