Ignorance of bliss
Sir: It is surprising that the fastidious Fred- eric Raphael should perpetuate one of the great common misapprehensions of English letters (Books, 18 January). 'Foie Bras to the sound of trumpets' was not 'Sydney Smith's conception of bliss'. On the contrary, Smith, quoted in Lady Holland's Memoir of 1855 (Vol I, ch. 2, p. 15), said, contemptu- ously, that it was the idea of Heaven of someone whose views he despised.
Michael Grosvenor Myer
34 West End, Haddenham, Cambridge