18 FEBRUARY 1949, Page 5

A lady named Mrs. Hugo Harper, who has not impinged

on my consciousness before, is said to have been asserting at Cambridge, at a meeting of the Cambridge University Nationalist Club (which may not be developing Fascist tendencies, but looks rather as though it were), that " one in every nine British M.P.s are Jews or of Jewish extraction. Since 1847 our own Government has not been Christian." Being full of charity I am ready io assume that Mrs. Hugo Harper has been to some extent misreported, for I am reluctant to think any Cambridge society would invite a speaker liable to talk nonsense and to say that since 1847 our own Government has not been Christian, if anyone did say it, would be sheer nonsense, whatever it may be supposed to mean. That one M.P. in every nine—i.e., some 7i—is Jewish or of Jewish extraction I flatly decline to believe. At any rate, I should like to see the list. Curiously enough, a Cambridge tutor was observing to me casually less than a week ago that among entrants to his college it was taken for granted that a Jewish freshman would be scholastically from half a year to a year ahead of the average.

* * *