18 OCTOBER 1963, Page 7

Pas- devout les domestiques The quotation of the week was

from the delegate from the floor who asserted at the time the Premier was undergoing his opera- tion., 'I am sure that when all this is over, we shall find that Mr. Macmillan has plenty of stuffing left in him.' But a close second was— Randolph, again : 'It is thought bad taste,' he wrote, 'to discuss politics at a party conference. The mood is, yOu must not talk in front of the servants.' And that suggests an eccentric notion:. can it be that his antipathy to Mr. Butler stems from an instinctive aversion to his patronymic? The pukka sahibs in India used to regale each other with the story of the occasion some dowager was told that the people just arriving were the Butlers: 'Whose?' she balefully replied. When Mr. Butler got up to make his speech, Randolph was observed to leave his seat and stride away, as if putting himself formally at'the head of an exodus. But his move went unnoticed.