31 MAY 1930, Page 32

There is something terrifying about any work of art by

the hand or the pen of a madman, and Nicolas Gogol's Diary of a Madman (The Cresset Press, £3 3s.), recently translated by Prince Mirsky, has that`,` something ", to excess. It is partly because this diary makes one laugh as well as cry that its effect is so poignant. Both the illustrations in aquatint, by A. Alexeieff, and the general production of the book are excellent.

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