18 JULY 1992

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A nid growing unease over the state of the economy, both the Prime Minister and the Chancellor of the Exchequer strongly reaffirmed their commitment to maintain- ing sterling at...

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The importance of losing sleep over the British Constitution SIMON HEFFER S ince there is little legislating to occupy them, MPs devoted much of the last days before the...

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JULIE BURCHILL T hree things are interesting about l'affaire Bottomley. One, that the Sun refused to print the story about the illegiti- macy of the Health Minister's...

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John Simpson laments the increasing ignorance of the only remaining superpower, and blames the television networks I WAS at a dinner party in a pleasant uni- versity town in...

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Robin Lodge explains how to stay alive and eat well in Sarajevo Sarajevo THE MAN at the reception desk was unflappable. Oblivious of the crashes of gunfire from the street...

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John Gummer sees the threatened ordination of women as the latest of a series of blows to the Anglican community LAST WEEKEND the General Synod of the Church of England began...

One hundred years ago

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THE Conservative candidate in Central Finsbury, who was beaten by the narrow majority of 3, has received information which, it is said, justifies him in demanding a scrutiny of...

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Michael Heath

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A profile of Paul Dacre, all of a sudden the most sought after editor in England THERE ARE VERY FEW journalists who would pass up the chance to edit the Times, and even fewer...

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Will Hutton sees some historic parallels to the Government's economic predicament — but nothing quite as depressing THE RECESSION seems never to end. Flying in the face of...

If symptoms

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persist. . . WHENEVER one of my patients says that his or her ambition is to be happy, I know at once that he or she is destined for misery. I tell such seekers after hap-...

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On his 83rd birthday, Hardy Amies reminisces about his life and times MY YEAR, 1909, was in the first decade of the century. Now we are in the last. The 20th is my century. It...

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Waiting for a few Delphic utterances PAUL JOHNSON L ast week's special number of the Times Literary Supplement on philosophy left me, as usual, wondering, what is philos- ophy...

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The stock the Prime Minister sold us on a false prospectus CHRISTOPHER FILDES I do hope the police will not come along to Downing Street at six in the morning — 'Buzz off, Mrs...

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The Titophiles

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Sir: I feel that I really must take issue with Noel Malcolm's comments on the Allies' analysis of the situation in Yugoslavia in 1942, 1943. ('How Britain blundered in the...

LETTERS Seven deadly sins

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Sir: Perhaps distance does lend enchant- ment. It certainly promotes objectivity. As one of the English diaspora, I confess myself puzzled, if not astounded, as to why Mrs...

Free opinion

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Sir: Kathleen Page (Letters, 4 July) poses a question concerning the Maxwell pension funds which I have seen posed elsewhere in the press but not answered. The question is: why...

Sir: Am I alone in finding Noel Malcolm's long article

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on Britain's role in wartime Yugoslavia both distasteful and untimely? As one who was close to the decision- making process in Cairo and later in Italy and knowing many of the...

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Mr Knight's philosophy

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Sir: In attempting to justify the unjustifi- able, the Sunday Times's serialisation of Diana: Her True Story, Andrew Knight writes (`The restraint of royalist Rupert', 4 July),...

What's twat?

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Sir: Charles Moore (Politics, 4 June) admits having reached the age of 35 with- out knowing the meaning of the word 'twat'. He is not the only man to have been so sheltered from...

Taxi-driver's tip

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Sir: Auberon Waugh (Another voice, 27 June) alleges that 'cab-drivers seldom give anyone under the age of 35 the right change'. There are several reasons why this is unlikely to...

Druidic truths

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Sir: Julie Burchill (Diary, 4 July) has got it wrong about Mrs Dwina Gibb. She is not 'the first female leader of the Druids in 200 years' but the first patroness of the order...

Burchill spanked

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Sir: In her Diary comments on Vaclav Havel (11 July), Julie Burchill is like some infantile safari-park visitor who, from a place of safety, pulls down her knickers and shows...

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How very sad their fates Alastair Forbes THE LAST TSAR: THE LIFE AND DEATH OF NICHOLAS II by Edvard Radzinsky Hodder & Stoughton,f20, pp. 422 ANASTASIA: THE LOST PRINCESS by...

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Discovering our natural element

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Mark Archer HAUNTS OF THE BLACK MASSEUR: THE SWIMMER AS HERO by Charles Sprawson Cape, £15.99, pp. 307 F amous literary swimmers are a fascinat- ing breed. Shelley and...

The importance of being different

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Philip Marsden JOURNEY TO THE VANISHED CITY: THE SEARCH FOR A LOST TRIBE OF ISRAEL by Tudor Parfitt John Curtis! Hodder & Stoughton, £18.99, pp. 278 h e Lemba are one of dozens...

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A jigsaw puzzle world

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Mark Illis A FOOL'S ALPHABET by Sebastian Faulks Hutchinson, .03.99, pp. 274 I f you try to make a narrative out of memory, you find yourself distorting the facts, imposing a...

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Remembering palmier days

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Steven Runciman COTE D'AZUR by Mary Blume Thames & Hudson, £14.95, pp. 208 N owadays, when almost everyone believes it to be his or her right to enjoy a yearly holiday in the...

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Testing times for the Master

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Gregory Martin REMBRANDT: THE MASTER AND HIS WORKSHOP: PAINTINGS edited by Christopher Brown, Jan Kelch and Pieter van Thiel DRAWINGS AND ETCHINGS by Helen Bevers, Peter...

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Reinventing an old language

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David Wright THE FABER BOOK OF TWENTIETH CENTURY SCOTTISH POETRY edited by Douglas Dunn Faber, E17.50, pp. 424 h is is an eye-opener, or better, an ear- opener of an anthology....


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the perfect figure where Mystery and Beauty intersect — and from that point on the heavens opened up like a casket of Mesopotamian rubies and all his calculations proved...

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Women guide the plot

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Harriet Waugh S ocial realism in the modern detective novel seems to demand that male detectives when married should have immensely irritating and humourless wives. Dora, the...

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Music 1 Cornerstone of our culture Simon Heifer on the revival of interest in Vaughan Williams T oo many musical people in this coun- try measure our composers by how well...

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Music 2

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Bumped off Peter Phillips R ather to everyone's distress we have recently been coming face to face, or eye- ball to velvet upholstery, with a problem which habitually besets...


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Home alone In a quiet week at the cinema Mark Amory ventured into the video shop T here was no promising new film this week so I turned to videos. Video stores reveal to the...

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Richard Hamilton (Tate Gallery, till 6 September) Philip Braham (Raab Gallery, till 8 August) Sixties sage Giles Auty R ichard Hamilton, a founding father of Pop Art and...

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Someone Who'll Watch Over Me (Hampstead) Grand Hotel (Dominion) Three men in a room Sheridan Morley I n the 12 months since Death and the Maiden first opened Upstairs at the...

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The shows must go on Ursula Buchan H arrogate, Ebbw Vale, Malvern, St Helier, Chelsea, Hampton Court, South- port, Edinburgh. Defunct marquisates? By- elections won by the...

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High life

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Queen for a night Taki E Mykonos ven in classical times, Mykonians were known to be strangers to virtue. Long before Guy de Maupassant coined the phrase 'having a magnificent...


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1492 and all that Martyn Harris C olumbus and the Age of Discovery (BBC 2, 8.20 p.m., Saturday) is an ambi- tious seven-parter commemorating the 500th anniversary of the...

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Long life

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George's finest hours Nigel Nicolson I f you were being married for the fourth time at the age of 72, even if your new bride had never been married before, you might arrange a...

Low life

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Brought to book Jeffrey Bernard L ast Monday the noble biographer Graham Lord announced that he had fin- ished the book, to be called Just the One. He has delivered the last...

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ST SWITHIN'S day has passed, 15 July, and let us hope it did not rain, as I firmly believe in the 40 days' rain thereafter. Did you realise that Napoleon surrendered on this day...

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Dandelion and Bourgogne Auberon Waugh I n the last few months I have noticed in myself, in my friends and g uests and even amon g the winos of the Academy Club, a stran g e...

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Extra pilgrim Jaspistos I n Competition No 1736 you were in- vited to suppose that the Wife of Bath's fifth husband was alive and described in the Prologue to The Canterbury...


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Tal stories Raymond Keene N o assessment of the career of Mikhail Tal, who died three weeks ago, would be complete without giving the details of his smashing victory in the...

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A first prize of £20 and a bottle of Graham's Malvedos 1979 Vintage Port for the first correct solution opened on 3 August, with two runners-up prizes of E10 (or, for UK...

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Tee and sand wedges Frank Keating 'ALL OPENS', wrote W.F. Deedes in Monday's Daily Telegraph, 'represent a fierce examination, but in the post-war years Muirfield has granted...


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Dear Mary. . . Q. I have to send a thank you letter to someone grand who has written very warm- ly to me about a recent exhibition of my paintings. Do you agree with me that...