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The Spectator

M r Gordon Brown, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, explained to the Commons the government's policy on joining Euro- pean Monetary Union. 'Barring some fun- damental and...

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The Spectator

The Spectator, 56 Doughty Street, London WC1N 2LL Telephone: 0171-405 1706; Fax 0171-242 0603 TROUBLESOME TORIES O nce again, a brown hush puppy has been firmly lodged in the...

Page 8


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What Mr Hague's team intend to do about Mr Clarke and to him BRUCE ANDERSON L ast week, William Hague secured a victory in his shadow Cabinet which had eluded both Margaret...

Due to a confusion at the printers, the word `tendencies'

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was misspelt in my piece last week I apologise to readers.

Page 9

Classifieds — pages 68, 69 and 70

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The Spectator

A.A. GILL T here's no avoiding it any longer. I don't like any of my friends. I've just flicked through my address book, a thin volume, and was filled with irritation, distaste...

Page 10


The Spectator

How real leadership means never having to say never MATTHEW PARRIS But what the archivist cannot do is tell us why. History books will offer facts, — land- marks — but if we...

Page 11


The Spectator

Edward Heathcoat Amory says Mr Blair's `rebranding, and the Tories' rising English nationalism, are among forces leading to the end of the United Kingdom WHAT a pity that they...

Page 13


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Peter Oborne says Nicholas Soames is neither senior nor grand enough to behave like this to Mr Hague AS A GENERAL rule Nicholas Soames is a popular sort of chap. He is in...

Page 15


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Michael Gove on the Tories' search for 'Anyone But Archer' to be their candidate for mayor of London THE BATTLE to become London's mayor is an opportunity for both main par-...

Page 16

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Page 20


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Hardy Amies says that John Galliano and Alexander McQueen design clothes that no one wants to wear THE CATWALK is now a familiar feature of the fashion trade, but it is a...

Second opinion

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`WHAT is truth? said jesting Pilate; and would not stay for an answer' — which is just as well, because no one would have given it him anyway. Man loves truth as worms love...

Page 22

The Commons returns 1

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WHAT'S WRONG WITH MPs Bernard Weatherill, former Speaker, says there are too many of them, and they should not let government bully them A STEADY rumour spreading through the...

Page 24

The Commons returns 2

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NEW LABOUR, OLD GRUDGES Sion Simon says who the new MPs are, which ones to watch, and why older ones will cause the government trouble THE LAST Labour landslide, over 50 years...

Mind your language

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WE HAVE all noticed how newspapers often leave untold the end of a story; they report a cliffhanger or constitution- al crisis, but leave the fate of Pauline on the cliff or the...

Page 26


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It's because he's tried nearly everything else in vain, says Mark Steyn New Hampshire WHAT is it with vice-presidents and situa- tion comedy characters? In 1992, Dan Quayle...

Page 28


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Frederick Lawton says there is now hysteria surrounding the whole subject of paedophilia HAVE paedophiles in present-day demonology come to occupy the same role as witches did...

Page 30


The Spectator

The decline and fall of anti-Americanism in Britain PAUL JOHNSON I s anti-Americanism in Britain dead? Not quite, but it is dying. In recent days I have been charging up and...

Page 32

Sir: If Baroness Blackstone is to be nomi- nated it

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seems grossly unfair to leave out Baroness Jay. Roy Jenkins and Martin Ainis come to mind, but each has the quality Widmerpool conspicuously lacks, i.e. style. In the Fifties...

Sir: I loved Frank Johnson's 'Paging Mr Widmerpool' though I

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was a little dismayed to learn that so many of his acquaintances are putting themselves forward as counter- parts of Anthony Powell's creation. I do hope they are doing...

Widmerpool nominations

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Sir: I was intrigued by Frank Johnson's piece about the possibility of the existence of real Widmerpools among us today (Shared opinion, 25 October). I noticed in the second...

LETTERS Only joking

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Sir: As regards The City of Light by 'Jacob of Ancona' (`Chinese fake away?', 25 Octo- ber), surely the first question to put to David Selbourne should have been what language...

Sir: Reading Anthony Powell's Dance 20 years ago, the exciting

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fear gripped me and others among my ambitious acquaintances that we might be our own Widmerpools. However, now that I and they have all become wallflowers, I feel free to...

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The Spectator

1998 Diary and Wallet The Spectator 1998 Diary, bound in soft dark navy blue leather, is now available and at the same prices as last year. Laid out with a whole week to view,...

Page 34

That's showbiz

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Sir: Andrew Rawnsley's attempt to defend his programme Bye Bye Blues is disingenu- ous (Letters, 18 October). It is true that I would have preferred to proceed with the...

A fate worse than death

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Sir: Thank you for solving the mystery behind the suicide of Stephen Milligan. If I were ever faced with the prospect of dining with such a smug, self-regarding, humour - less...

Sir: What an invitation! My nomination for female Widmerpool is

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Baroness Jay; admit- tedly she didn't start from scratch, but what a survivor! The affair with Carl Bernstein, while wife of our Washington ambassador, publicity during the...

A friend in need

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Sir: It really is courageous of Bruce Ander- son (Politics, 18 October) to accept that doubts exist about Neil Hamilton's guilt. After all, Mr Anderson is famous for being...

Computer literate

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Sir: I cannot see why David Edgar takes me to task (Letters, 25 October) for refusing to help a student buy a computer on which to work at her `playwriting studies', suggesting...

Not such a good story

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Sir: Your profile of Charles Whelan (`All for Gordon', 25 October) recycled an inaccurate Mail on Sunday diary story (6 July). You imply that Peter Mandelson, the Minister...

Page 35


The Spectator

The frightening game now played by serious newspapers and the BBC STEPHEN GLOVER T here are people who maintain the indefensible about crime'. Ignoring the evi- dence of their...

Page 38


The Spectator

Laudator temporis acti Philip Hensher COMING HOME by John Betjeman, edited by Candida Lycett-Green Methuen, £20, pp.537 B etjeman's letters, which have been issued in a...


The Spectator

12 Months 6 Months UK ❑ £93.00 CI £47.00 Europe (airmail) 0 £104.00 Cl £52.00 USA Airspeed 0 US$151 U US$76 Rest ofl Airmail U £115.00 U £58.00 World J Airspeed 0 £107.00 U...

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Plodding through China

The Spectator

Philip Glazebrook THE CITY OF LIGHT by Jacob d'Ancona, translated and edited by David Selbourne Little, Brown and Co., £22,50, pp. 231 T he desire for gain conquers the...

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The voices of the victims

The Spectator

Francis King AN EMBARRASSMENT OF TYRANNIES edited by W.L. Webb and Rose Bell Gollancz, £20, pp. 347 O ne of the many distinguished contrib- utors, John Mortimer, to this...

THE SPECTATOR BOOKSHOP All the books reviewed here are available

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from THE SPECTATOR BOOKSHOP Telephone: 0541 557288 Facsimile: 0541 557225 We accept payment by credit card ACCESS/VISA/AMEX/SWITCH or send order with cheque to The Spectator...

Page 41

A half-hero of our time

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David Pryce-Jones WHERE LIGHT AND SHADOW MEET by Emilie Schindler, with Erika Rosenberg W. W. Norton, £16.95, pp. 162 P oor old Mrs Schindler is 90. In the small town of San...

Page 42

After the lights go down

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Jonathan Cecil THE DAILY TELEGRAPH THIRD BOOK OF OBITUARIES: ENTERTAINERS edited by Hugh Massingberd Macmillan, £15.99, pp. 340 I n 1921 a comedian called Alfred Lester —...

Page 43

Does your end justify your genes?

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Andrew Brown LIFELINES by Steven Rose Allen Lane, £20, pp. 335 W here once people believed in Destiny or a God that shaped their ends, they now believe in genes. In Penelope...

Page 44

Padlocks and plum cake

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Jonathan Keates THE HISTORY OF BETHLEM by Jonathan Andrews, Asa Briggs, Roy Porter, Penny Tucker, and Keir Waddington Routledge, £150, pp. 768 L et those who mourn the passing...

Page 45

Homage to Naomi

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Robert Oakeshott THE NINE LIVES OF NAOMI MITCHISON by Jenni Calder Virago, £20, pp. 340 Wisaw I t was on the train between Livingstone and Lusaka, in far away Zambia, that I...


The Spectator

How to save yourself 51 trips to the library . . . or over £41 on The Spectator If you're forced to share The Spectator with fellow students, then you'll know how difficult it...

Page 47

Portrait of a novelist

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Ra Page THE NYMPHOMATION by Jeff Noon Doubleday, £15.99, pp. 362 S trictly speaking, Jeff Noon doesn't write novels, he paints them. Sampling and blending ideas from the...

Page 48

Clerihew Corner

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Whoever shot William the Second In the New Forest, it must be reckoned The least interesting Unsolved Mystery In our Island History. James Michie

Performing at Drury Lane and around the Prince of Wales

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John Bowen A TRAITOR'S KISS: THE LIFE OF RICHARD BRINSLEY SHERIDAN by Fintan O'Toole Granta, £20, pp.516 R is a classic playwright, regularly revived, who wrote only two...

Page 49


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Bring back ideas and argument Tom Sutcliffe on the malign influence of consumerism on arts journalism omething deep down inside me revolt- ed when I first heard employees of...

Page 52

Exhibitions 1

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The Private Collection of Edgar Degas (Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, till 11 January 1998) The great collector Roger Kimball D egas keeps it up,' a friend of the...

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Exhibitions 2

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Pierre-Paul Prud'hon (Grand Palais, Paris, till 12 January 1998, then Metropolitan Museum, New York) Distinctive power Martin Gayford B ut what will we think of it in 50...

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Exhibitions 3

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Glass, Space and Light (Crafts Council, 44A Pentonville Road, N1, till 30 November, then touring) Dangerous stuff Alan Powers G lass is a material which creates a par-...

Page 56

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The Spectator

LA Confidential (18, selected cinemas) Burrows of deceit Mark Steyn Y ou expect movies to have problems with Jane Austen or Henry James, but what's depressing is the way they...

Page 57


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Twice Through the Heart; From the House of the Dead (English National Opera) Cosi fan tutte (Opera North) Inspired coupling Michael Tanner ark-Anthony Turnage's Twice Through...

Page 58


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Dance Umbrella (Queen Elizabeth Hall) Hypnotic change thannandrea Pomo F or many, Stephen Petronio is the American contemporary choreographer known for having created a dance...

Page 59


The Spectator

A Delicate Balance (Haymarket) A Letter of Resignation (Comedy) Close to home Sheridan Morley W hen Edward Albee's A Delicate Bal- ance first opened here, in a somewhat aus-...

Page 60

Pop music

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Should I take up golf? Marcus Berkmann N ow that there is no genuine pop radio any more — or, at least, none that adults can listen to without wanting to hit some- one — there...

Page 61


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Battle of the brats Michael Vestey H ave you heard Brat Radio UK recently? It's devoted to the gormless Young and they to it. Interestingly, the not- so-gormless young listen...


The Spectator

On the side of beauty James Delingpole O ne of the more useless jobs I've ever done was as arts correspondent on the Daily Telegraph. On a bad day, I'd have to do something...

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The turf

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Feeling cursed Robin Oakley T here were those who thought that the momentary grimace which passed across the Queen's face during the opening cere- monies of this year's...

Page 63

High life

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Christian thoughts Taki New York h, dear! For one brief shining moment I thought that God and Christiani- ty were making a comeback. (Not to be confused with the Second...

Page 64

Country life

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Nobody's perfect Leanda de Lisle I only believe in God every other day and my holy days don't always fall on a Sunday. If I go to Mass it's with the same kind of...


The Spectator

No escape Andrew Robson DOUBLING the opponents at low level yields some of the largest penalties. All too frequently, however, the temptation to bid on is too great and the...

Page 65

c •

The Spectator

By Digby Anderson Imperative cooking: gourmet nutters WILL the new Food Standards Agency be hijacked by nutters? Can the ministers involved, Messrs Dobson, Rooker and Jowell...

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The Spectator

if 51'6L ,,,L, ,L,,,,, ,,,, ii.": ISLE OF U RA _i , SAG,E!.15,7 S L■ILV , .. 4,' I COMPETITION Sense out of nonsense Jaspistos IN COMPETITION NO. 2006 you were invited...


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Tilburg trophies Raymond Keene IN SPITE of losing to Swidler (see last week's column), Kasparov still tied first in the strong tournament at Tilburg in Hol- land. En route, he...

Page 67

No. 2009: Anagrammatics

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Seventeen years ago I asked for anagrams of single lines in Shakespeare's sonnets and was rewarded by a splendid entry. I invite you to do the same again with any line of a...


The Spectator

A first prize of £30 and a bottle of Graham's Late Bottled Vintage 1991 Port for the first correct solution opened on 17 November, with two runners-up prizes of £20 (or, for UK...

Solution to 1332: Order! order!

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IllnallniNICIEIMISIZICIEW B fingElpErt R 1 N 1 6 0E0 TERSZIPER OE ICCL SI OCOEE! F 0 BC U U'l al E T L pp 1313130En I criallii idinellilommeinrig Mill:F1111 Rot E Jo... r i...

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Silly games Simon Barnes COLERIDGE talked about 'that willing suspension of disbelief for the moment, which constitutes poetic faith'. The army officer in Monty Python talked...


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Dear Mary. . . Q. A friend has returned from America with a maddening new vocal tic. He ends every sentence with an upward inflexion as though it were a question. What can I do...