27 APRIL 1956, Page 7

IT WAS DELIGHTFUL last Saturday to see the Vice-Chancellor of

Oxford University take a rest from the everlasting roads controversy and bend his formidable charm on Messrs. Bulganin and Khrushchev. What with one thing and another, he had a trying afternoon. The erased picture of Stalin in New College Hill might have proved the last straw, but chance and diplomacy saved the day. Someone had turned the Epstein bust of the Vice-Chancellor, which also stands in the hall, face to the wall, Its living likeness patted it gently as he went by. 'You see,' said he, 'they do this to me as well.' From all accounts, this evidence of an English hero in eclipse was affably received. At the same time connoisseurs of window-dressing were enjoying the display in Blackwell's book shop. It included Stalin by Trotsky (knocked down from 25s. to 10s.), Joseph and his Brothers, Reflections on Hanging, Through Siberian Snows, Oxford Folly, and You Have Been Warned. No one seems to have taken the warning very seriously.

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