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The Spectator

`OK, luv, we'll let you know.' O pinion polls favourable to the Tories increased the pressure on Mr Major to call a general election for November. Unem- ployment rose by 59,000...

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SPECTAT rw OR The Spectator, 56 Doughty Street, London WC1N 2LL

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Telephone: 071-405 1706; Telex 27124; Fax 071-242 0603 ANYTHING TO DECLARE? T " weeks ago we advocated that Mr Major should hold an election this Novem- ber. So popular has...


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SUBSCRIBE TODAY - RATES ' 12 Months 6 Months UK 0 £71.00 0 £35.50 Europe (airmail) 0 £82.00 0 £41.00 USA Airspeed 0 US$110 0 US$55.03 Rest of Airmail 0 £98.00 0 £49.00 World...

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The clever Tories who are far too clever to have any new ideas NOEL MALCOLM A t Conservative Central Office on Tuesday, ten whizz-kid Tory prospective candidates were...

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The Spectator

S tress, one is told, is caused by the inability to say No. And I have unwittingly coincided working for The Spectator with our first family holiday since 1980. Forget- ting how...

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We must choose between the fat archdeacon and the thin archbishop CHARLES MOORE U nlike the Psalmist, the Archbishop of York takes no pleasure in marrow and fatness. When his...

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Theodore Dalrymple gives his medical report on the moral and cultural wasteland of modern England I LIVE in a wasteland. In the council estates, the glass of many of the...

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Anne McElvoy believes Europe should face up to the necessity of taking sides in Yugoslavia Zagreb THE MEN in white are variously com- pared to ice-cream vendors, the crew of a...

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THE OUTLAW Michael Heath

The Spectator


The Spectator

Michael Lewis on a town which symbolises the richest and worst in American society Aspen ASPEN, Colorado, is one of those white, middle-class American towns where ignor- ance...

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Andrew Lycett on why the Government should admit its error and buy back Heveningham Hall FROM the front door of Huntingfield Hall, her solid 18th-century farmhouse in Suffolk,...

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William Cash on-the renewed promiscuity of homosexuals unafraid of Aids YEATS's view that sex and death were the only subjects worthy of adult consideration appears not to be...

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The Spectator

Anatole Kaletsky debunks some received ideas about the property crisis A FUNNY thing happened to John Ma- jor's Britain on the way to the property- owning democracy. Property...

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The Spectator

Lend me your moisturiser, old girl PAUL JOHNSON P erfume for men has arrived', states an ad in the current issue of Tatler. A poll taken by Faberge suggests that men are...

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The Spectator

Poll-struck City gets a lick and a promise and my fiver gets the fever CHRISTOPHER FILDES E lection fever rages in the City, and making a market in polling dates is the...

Uncrossed purposes

The Spectator

IF YOU find yourself spending the night in your local jail, or trying to collect your ,council's tax, or riding shotgun in a squad ;car, then you will have been caught up by the...

Shock therapy

The Spectator

SOMEONE looking remarkably like the man from the Pru has dumped 22 million shares in Royal Insurance. I now hope to see the Royal dump its shares in the Prudential. These...

Hanson on form

The Spectator

THE TWO noble bidders at Hanson have excelled themselves. Bidding for Beazer, they pick up a company at its last gasp under the burden of debt, and priced accordingly. It is...


The Spectator

I AM delighted to learn that the City's senior banker has been honoured for his services. He is not, as you might think, some aging Baring or supernumerary Barc- lay. Kung Chao...

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House of horrors

The Spectator

Sir: With three columns of criticism, Richard Hewlings (Arts, 7 September)' clearly regards Simon Thurlby's recreation of the Great Kitchen at Hampton Court as Disneyland. As...

Slav omelette

The Spectator

Sir: Noel Malcolm (Letters, 7 September) evidently feels so strongly about Yugoslavia that he is unable to respect facts or the ele- mentary courtesies of debate. For example,...


The Spectator

Sir: It is unfortunate that you choose to belittle the force of your arguments by reg- ularly inserting snide references to John Major. To suggest ('Fever Breaks Out', 7...

Loads of bull

The Spectator

Sir: Sorry to disagree with Sir Raymond Carr on the subject of Spain (Books, 7 September), but it is not true that bullfight- ing is no longer popular among Spaniards. Nor is it...

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Pollen count

The Spectator

Sir: I am collecting material for a memoir , of Arthur Hungerford Pollen the naval his- torian and inventor, who died in 1937, and would be grateful for any letters or recol-...


The Spectator

Sir: From the disadvantage point of the Irish Republic, one read with wry amuse- ment William Cash (Thermometers and what-not', 7 September) on your relatively small Roman...

Bostock's pit

The Spectator

Sir: Simon Courtauld (`Unquiet graves' 7 September) suggests that livestock farmers are not showing their customary self- reliance. For animal casualties, the War Office used...

By the book

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Sir: Mr Barton's cartoon (31 August) is, to say the least, idealistic. Delving into the depths of my memory I can not remember having seen a single telephone directory, let...

Off to Heathrow

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Sir: It seems as though poor Mr Lewis just cannot win. On the one hand his earnings are threatened by the prospect of a rapa- cious Labour government (`Sixty per cent of...

Kremlin watcher

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Sir: One is naturally grateful when, at the age of 97, one is resuscitated, or nearly. This service you have rendered me in your article 'Snatch of the Baltic' (7 September). I...


The Spectator

Sir: Geoffrey Wheatcroft, in his fairminded review (Books, 7 September) of Tony Palmer's book Menuhin, A Family Portrait, refers to Zanina's and Jeremy's grumbles. In fact no...

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A real book

The Spectator

Alastair Forbes WELL, I FORGET THE REST by Quentin Crewe Hutchinson, f17.99, pp. 278 I n 1952, six years after coming down from a distractingly hedonist Cambridge, knowing only...

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Adopting the necessary disguise

The Spectator

Anita Brookner SECOND BEST by David Cook Faber, £13.99, pp. 218 T his excellent novel is about depriva- tion, which comes in endlessly varied forms. The most obvious victim...

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Who's play is it anyway?

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John Mortimer THE MOSCOW ART THEATRE LE'l'IERS edited by Jean Benedetti Methuen, £20, pp.377 T his is a chronicle of the enthusiastic cooperation, the arguments, the rivalry...

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Laughter and the love of friends

The Spectator

Anthony Powell MAURICE BARING: A CITIZEN OF EUROPE by Emma Letley Constable, £18.95, pp.269 M aurice Baring (1874-1945) was essentially an Edwardian in the sense that Max...

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Between insulin and the big- bosomed nurse

The Spectator

Bryan Appleyard THE FABER BOOK OF MADNESS edited by Roy Porter Faber, £14.99, pp.572 T he Maudsley Hospital began using insulin-shock therapy for its most deeply disturbed...

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Poetry amid the battle

The Spectator

Penelope Lively UNDER EGYPT'S SPELL: THE INFLUENCE OF EGYPT ON WRITERS IN ENGLISH FROM THE 18TH CENTURY by Mursi Saad el Din and John Cromer Bellew Publishing, £18.95, pp. 254...

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You and Whose Army?

The Spectator

They gave him his part in the school play at Christmas And smiled when they told him 'You won't need to practise And surely your Dad has a velveteen waistcoat And won't you be...

Lying down with the kid

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John Wells THE LIAR by Stephen Fry Heinemann, £13.99, pp.277 A drian Healey, Fry's bisexual hero, has just been introduced to real foie gras: You'll find the Carton...

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With Jane Austen as patron saint

The Spectator

Alethea Hayter THE BIRTH OF THE MODERN: WORLD SOCIETY 1815-1830 by Paul Johnson Weidenfeld, £25,pp.1095 O n 8 January 1815 British troops unsuccessfully attacked New Orleans;...

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A conundrum solved

The Spectator

A.L. Rowse W hen James Joyce died in 1941 T.S. Eliot wrote a letter to the Times to protest against the inadequacy of its obituary notice. Courteous as always, he proposed `one...

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Candid not only to camera

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Lindsay Anderson ME: STORIES OF MY LIFE by Katharine Hepburn Viking•, £16.99, pp. 418 I f you were asked to describe in a single word the unique quality of Katharine Hep- burn,...

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Experience near Porlock

The Spectator

A cry, a crash, and a vengeful shout From the street below; and I have written: The mountains had to start somewhere, so why not Immediately rising out of flat fields Where the...

Chronicles of an imp, not the devil

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Philip Glazebrook OF LOVE AND ASTHMA by Ferdinand Mount Heinemann, £13.99, pp. 320 T his successful and amusing novel recounts from the point of view of its sardonic narrator...

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The Spectator

Exhibitions 1 Once was enough Giles Auty The Pop Art Show (Royal Academy, till 15 December) Objects for the Ideal Home: the Legacy of Pop Art (Serpentine Gallery, till 20...

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The Spectator

It's Japanese, but is it art? Kate Berridge experiences the darker side of Japanese society 0 ur latest Japanese import is Japanese culture itself, packaged in the form of a...

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Exhibitions 2

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Michael Faraday 1791-1867 (National Portrait Gallery, till 18 January) Scientific revolutionary Tony Osman are used to the idea of scientific revolutions — known in the trade...

Mu si c

The Spectator

Story of a symphony Robin Holloway T he two largest novelties in this year's Proms were a symphony and a piano con- certo. It is interesting to see how the con- cert hall's...

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The Spectator

Moscow City Ballet (Sadlers Wells Theatre) Russian rip-off Deirdre McMahon M oscow City Ballet, so the leaflet for its current season assures us, 'provides a unique...

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Sale-rooms •

The Spectator

Not just any old attic Alistair McAlpine O n 11, 12 and 13 November, Sotheby's will sell the contents of an old attic — not just any old attic but that of Castle Howard. In...

Theatre Hippolytos (Almeida)

The Spectator

Three Birds Alighting on a Field (Royal Court) Lost in translation Christopher Edwards T he Almeida Theatre continues its ambitious season with this version of Euripides'...

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The Spectator

Life Stinks (`12', Odeon Haymarket) Trust (`15', Cannon Chelsea) Uneasy laughter Harriet Waugh N ot every film can be a winner even when from a master of the comic art and...

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High life

The Spectator

Where charity begins Taki Mykonos w aswas not surprised to read that John Latsis has given £2 million to the Conserva- tive Party to help smooth its cash crisis. Here's a man...


The Spectator

Lonely hearts Martyn Harris A idrew Davies has been around for donkey's years. He was writing for televi- sion in the days when Dame Edna was still funny and Sir Robin Day...

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Low life

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Biter bit Jeffrey Bernard A friend of mine, a journalist and nov- elist, has taken it upon himself to write a biography of me. I am not quite sure how I feel about the...

New life

The Spectator

Family trees Zenga Longmore T hanks to the gift of some charmless `My Little Pony' toys, Omalara has discov- ered the art of playing quietly by herself. Sitting on the floor,...

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The Spectator

Latvian legend Raymond Keene L atvia occupies a position of great importance in the cultural history of chess, so this week 1 shall be celebrating that country ' s...


The Spectator

12 YEAR OLD SCOTCH WHISKY COMPETITION cluVAS REGA 4 Banjo dreams Jaspistos I n Competition No. 1694 you were in- vited to add three fantastic, boastful sestets to one of...

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Solution to 1024: Ding-dong MEM a El an' c rldlrla

The Spectator

E pin . c s cc 0 ff. r T pATI El a A n PA 14 EX 91 AACERA , TOrtertE RA morn= Ten drell L ri m ow 0 s ormeri r d drew s E rekintio run RnTr 1'1 - E owl LT 0 Oilill INRO...


The Spectator

A first prize of £20 and two further prizes of £10 (or, for UK solvers, a copy of Chambers English Dictionary — ring the word 'Dictionary') for the first three correct solutions...

No. 1697: Was he there?

The Spectator

There are some journalists who, one sus- pects, were not present at the scenes they describe, whether covering a local war or playing a round over the latest chic golf course,...

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The Spectator

Putting traumas Frank Keating WHATEVER the whispering sages say from the commentary boxes, and for all the back-page acres of newsprint which will be devoted to every...


The Spectator

Q. I am a 34-year-old bachelor. Because I am supposed to be eligible, I am always being asked by women I meet at dinner and drinks parties if I am married and if not why not. I...