10 SEPTEMBER 1921, Page 3

We regret to record the death last week of Mr.

Austin Dobson at the age of eighty-one. He was a true man of letters, who within his limited sphere strove earnestly for perfection. His light verse and his prose essays on his beloved eighteenth century are equally charming for their delicate wit, their ease, and their good taste. His knowledge of the age of Addison and Fielding, Johnson and Horace Walpole was intimate and profound, but he hated pedantry and wrote as if the reader shared his familiarity with the celebrities of those bygone days. Mr. Dobson was by profession a Civil servant and maintained the literary tradition of the old Board of Trade. His stern successors who calculate the Index Figure are not likely, we fear, to produce in their leisure hours anything comparable to the Proverb., In Porcelain or the Eighteenth Century Vignettes.