26 NOVEMBER 1983

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Commonweal or woe?

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T he Foreign and Commonwealth Office never allows itself the time to ask what is Britain's interest in the Commonwealth. It asks, of course, what is Britain's interest in each...

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Political commentary

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The Browning version Charles Moore 'Meyer glad confident morning again,' said Paul Johnson, and Mrs Thatcher fled to India. But was the morning ever all that confident or...

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M r Graham Walton, the father of the Liverpool sextuplets, has shown en- viable cheerfulness in the face of the terrify- ing domestic upheaval which he now faces. Has he thought...


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UK Eire Surface mail Air mail 6 months: 07.25 1R.07.25 £20.50 £26.50 One year: £34.50 1RL34.50 £41.00 £53.00 Cheques to be made payable to the Spectator and sent to...

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The samizdat Spectator

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Timothy Garton Ash recently in Warsaw T he Spectator is a small, barely legible magazine. It measures about six inches by four and contains some 130 hand-cut pages of smudged...

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Clever Turkish politics

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Christopher Hitchens I n 1955, the year that the Greek Cypriots began their revolt against the British oc- cupation, Charles Foley was editor of the Times of Cyprus. In his...

Game for a Daimler

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This week's question, set by Kingsley Amis, is to be found on page 41.

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Conduct unbecoming

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James Hughes-Onslow t is a little known fact that Harold Holt, It Australian Prime Minister who disap- peared while swimming in 1967, had a lesser misfortune three years...

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The bull-ring cycle

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Simon Courtauld Madrid inurin g the first weeks of the Civil War, in the hills of the Sierra Morena, a village priest was taken from his church to the local bull-ring. A bull...

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Guerrilla days

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Andrew Brown Belfast T he day after the Armagh murders I stopped to buy some cigarettes in a peaceful bohemian part of town. The shopkeeper, a healthy-looking bespectacled man...

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One hundred years ago

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Mr Shaw Lefevre should look still more narrowly into the proposal of the Metropolitan Railway to connect Praed Street with Westminster. The line would be invaluable, if it could...

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The making of a Monsignor

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Pearson Phillips e's got a speaking engagement at -11..Yarrow,' said Monsignor Bruce Kent's secretary, who is called Judy. Yarrow? Where's that? 'In the North-East,...

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The day after

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Nicholas von Hoffman Washington T n 1863 a force of Confederate irregulars 'under William Quantrill captured Lawrence, Kansas, burned it and put its in- habitants to the sword....

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The day after that

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Paul Johnson However, the real money-spinning gim- mick in this particular TV show was that, though billed under the category of 'Theatre', it was also what American TV men...


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295/297 New Cross Road, , London SE14 Tel: 01 - 892 8993 We are one of London's remaining traditional curers of smoked salmon and are still using smoke holes which date back to...

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In the City

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Mr Lawson lays it on the line Jock Bruce-Gardyne T he other day, in the run-up to the Chancellor's autumn statement, 1 was asked to talk to a conference organised by a leading...

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Magnifying Runcie

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Sir: One does not have to be a sycophantic admirer of the Archbishop of Canterbury to find the article on him by A. N. Wilson (`Doing the Lambeth walk', 12 November) extremely...

Taking the Tablet Sir: When Auberon Waugh reopened the pages

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of the Tablet (12 November), he seems to have hoped to revisit Brideshead . What a disappointment! And then he struck a snide review of the biographY of his own grandfather,...


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Waugh on want Sir: Auberon Waugh believes he has found a new means of identifying political subver- sives — apparently they have a tendency to abbreviate their Christian names....

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Good addresses

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Sir: Paul Johnson writing on 'Epistolary dons' (19 November) evidently lives a very sheltered life insulated from the harsh realities of the academic world if he really thinks...

Sir: I am a longtime admirer of the Spectator and

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a cover-to-cover reader. I do not expect to agree with everything that appears in it, indeed I hold that in a civilised society a difference of opinion adds to the spice of...

Sir: Paul Johnson ('Epistolary dons', 19 Ndvember) has put his

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pen on a point which has concerned me for a long time. It has always struck me as unfair that someone with a prestigious address but mundane name should get away with having...

Ways and means

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Sir: Listening to a radio programme about the great and growing problem of youth unemployment, an elegant scheme presented itself to me, and one which I think might recommend...

Sir: Like Auberon Waugh (12 November), I read the Tablet

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religiously when Douglas Woodruff was the editor. It then had a splendid masthead motto. It deserves capitals: 'PRO ECCLESIA DEI, PRO REGINA, ET PRO PATRIA'. What better...

What pots?

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Sir: You write (Notebook, I October) that Sir Ernest Debenham, the department store magnate, bequeathed his collection of Korean and Chinese ceramics to the Victoria and Albert...

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A policeman's lot Colin Welch I f I were Sir Kenneth Newman, Com- missioner of the Metropolitan Police, I would not thank my predecessor, Sir David McNee, for his poisoned...

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A political Prince J. Enoch Powell Albert, Prince Consort Robert Rhodes James (Hamish Hamilton £12.50) W hat a compulsive author the honour- able Member for Cambridge is....

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Larkin' about

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Christopher Hawtree Required Writing Philip Larkin (Faber & Faber £4.95) f I seem good, it's because everyone else is so bad,' Philip Larkin once observ- ed. 'Well, almost...


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John Stewart Collis The Human Body Jonathan Miller and David Pelham (Cape £7.95) D r Jonathan Miller, the author of this book, is a man of parts, though not a man apart. The...

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That crooked charmer, Smith

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William Camp F.E. Smith, First Earl of Birkenhead John Campbell (Jonathan Cape £30) c onsidering that he was the cleverest and most fascinating public man of his time, it is...


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William Camp is the author of The Glittering Prizes, a life of F.E. Smith. Francis King's most recent novel, Act of Darkness, was published earlier this year. Caroline...

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Gazing in

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Francis King Woman Beware Woman Emma Tennant (Jonathan Cape £7.95) A s its title, echoing that of a tragedy by Middleton, would suggest, this short, allusive, packed novel is...

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Of Tuareg and Aboriginals

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Caroline Moorehead Outback Thomas Keneally (Hodder & Stoughton £12.95) In Search of the Sahara Quentin Crewe (Michael Joseph £12.95) Tt is hoped', writes Thomas Keneally in a...

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Divers tongues

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Peter Levi The New Testament in Scots W. L. Lorimer (Canongate £17.50) Acts and Letters of the Apostles Richmond Lattimore (Farrar, Strauss, Giroux £10.95) . L. Lorimer was...

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Left bank, right bank

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Peter Quennell Paris John Russell (Thames & Hudson £25) The Crazy Years: Paris in the Twenties William Wiser (Thames & Hudson £8.95) D uring the 18th century, itinerant...

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Dog days Peter Ackroyd Cujo (`18', selected cinemas) S tephen King must take the primary responsibility for Cujo, since he wrote it. His novels have often been successful in...

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Watcher John McEwen Reg Butler (Tate Gallery till 15 January 1984) w hen Reg Butler died at the age of 68 in October 1981, plans were already underfoot for him to have a show...

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Points of view Peter Phillips T he Great British Music Festival has now presented three of its six concerts in this its first ever season, and a second round for next year was...

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Song and dance Giles Gordon Dancin' (Theatre Royal, Drury Lane) Dear Anyone (Cambridge) Sleeping Policemen (Royal Court Theatre Upstairs) Outlaw (Arts) T he grandest show of...

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High life

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Show business Taki New York A rabella Pollen is a 22-year-old English girl who, like everyone else these days, designs clothes for women. Although I'm a friend of hers, I was...


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Devil-worship Richard Ingrams I it possible that the BBC's God Slot on 'Sunday has now been replaced by a Devil Slot? The question occurred to me while watching a documentary...

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Low life

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Favourites Jeffrey Bernard t's been a particularly soft and unin- teresting week. So I shall have to diver- sify. Firstly, foremost and most awful, John Le Mesurier died....

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All Saints' P.J. Kavanagh ?The otherwise admirable Miles Kin g ton 1 came up with a rum radio pro g ramme to mark All Saints' Day and I have been ponderin g it, off and on,...

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No. 1294: The winners

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Jaspistos reports: Competitors were asked for a poem or a piece of prose putting the case that the Devil is female. The Devil is a woman. How the devil do I know? A woman's...


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Grim reaper Raymond Keene Age has struck its first blow against youth .1 - 1.in the Acorn Computer World Cham- pionship semi-finals. Curiously, both mat- ches see venerable...


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No. 1297: Christmas story Set by Jaspistos: You are invited to write a Christmas story of approximately 750 words in a Christmassy or any other spirit. There will be one prize...

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Solution to 632: 37 — Down!

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Crossword 635

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A prize of len pounds will be awarded for the first correct solution opened on 12 December. Entries to: Crossword 635, The Spectator, 56 Doughty Street, London WC1N 21.1. 1...

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Back Numbers

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If you missed the previous weeks' issues, it is still possible to enter the competition. Back numbers arc available from: The Spectator, Competition Back Numbers, 56 Doughty...


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The first prize is a magnificent 1934 'hinder Saloon, which is illustrated above. It is fully licensed and in excellent condition having had only two owners. The car is valued...

How to take part

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1. Dame Edna Everage will introduce one question by a different person in each issue of The Spectator from now until the 10 December issue. 2. Do not send in your replies each...

Game for a Daimler

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with Dame Edna Everage Hello Possums! When I first began my miracle career, the front rank of Melbourne's top drama -critics in describing me invariably used the adverb:...

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Portrait of the week

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F ollowing the decision of the Bundestag in Bonn to allow the siting of American Pershing 2 missiles in West Ger- many, Russia walked out of the arms con- trol negotiations with...

Books Wanted

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BARTLETT'S UNFAMILIAR QUOTATIONS by L. L. Levinson and 'A World Treasury of Proverbs' by H. Davidoff. Patrick Hughes, 14 Thornhill Square, London NI. THE MANNERS AND CUSTOMS OF...