26 JANUARY 1968

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is divorce by u4ateral application. Possibly the country hasro changed

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its mind about what marriage means that this departure will find overwhelming Support among the public. If it can be shown that this overwhelming support exists, then Parliament...

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A time for modest silence

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The affair of the uss 'Pueblo' is only the latest of many indications that President Johnson's administration is unwillingly em- broiled in the Far East in a conflict whose...

The futility of freezing

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Last time Mr Wilson returned from Moscow he demonstrated the coming together of our two societies by pushing through Parliament Part IV of the Prices and Incomes Act, repre-...

Portrait of the week

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Off Wonsan North Koreans boarded the US intelligence-gathering ship 'Pueblo' and forced her into port: the nuclear aircraft carrier 'Enterprise' and other us warships steamed...

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Spare the Whip, spoil the child

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POLITICAL COMMENTARY AUBERON WAUGH One of the joys in writing about politicians is that one can catch them whichever way they jump. Thus when Mr Wilson presented a re- silient...

Jolly Roger

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CHRISTOPHER HOLLIS 'Singapore was not expecting defence from Britain against the superpowers of China, Russia or the United States, but only protection against a rapacious...

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Chairman Canute

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CHINA DICK WILSON Recent reports from Hong Kong that Peking has now officially admitted that China is in a state of civil war are, like the report of Mark Twain's death,...

Dispirited band

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AMERICA MURRAY KEMPTON Los Angeles—The polls show Mr Johnson win- ning California. Why then do the senses keep insisting that this isn't going to happen? For one thing, there...

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Entry by stages

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FRANCE MARC ULLMANN Paris—President Johnson's New Year bid to boost the dollar came at the worst possible moment for France. The French economy was already suffering from a...

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Anatomy of a resignation

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PERSONAL COLUMN DESMOND DONNELLY Desmond Donnelly, MP for Pembroke since 1950, resigned the Labour party whip last week. • The anatomy of any resignation is always com-...

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J. W. M. TIIOMPSON It's unfortunate that so much talent for effec- tively resisting authority should be found on the Government side of the House of Com- mons when the...

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Private sector

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MEDICINE JOHN ROWAN WILSON The relationship between social scientists who specialise in health problems and the members of the medical profession is rather like that between...


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THE LAW R. A. CLINE Nowadays the Court of Appeal rarely misses an opportunity of letting off a broadside at the technicality of libel law. In one case Lord Justice Russell...

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The morning after

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CONSUMING INTEREST LESLIE ADRIAN This week is the tenth anniversary of the silliest piece of medical advice I have ever taken. Since he who gave it now inhabits which- ever...

Royalty's PRO

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THE PRESS DONALD McLACHLAN Any day now we shall be told the name of the new assistant for press relations at Bucking- ham Palace who, I am assured, has some news- paper...

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Fish 'n' chips

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TABLE TALK DENIS BROGAN Washington—Driving to a party at the British Embassy, I found an intelligent and chatty taxi- driver. (On the whole, Washington has the best...

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Virtue its own reward BOOKS

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MARTIN SEYMOUR-SMITH Miss Iris Murdoch is a popular novelist, but one who has been wholeheartedly accepted by the literary establishment. She has been acclaimed as 'original,'...

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Dark glass

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RAYNER HEPPENSTALL Jean Cocteau: the Man and the Mirror Elizabeth Sprigge and Jean-Jacques Kihm (Gollancz 42s) This, I am sure, will always be a useful, but it is not a...


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Laymen CLEMENT FREUD The Do-Gooders Alfred Grossmann (Heine- mann 25s) A Horse's Head Evan Hunter (Constable 25s) The Sinner's Bell Kevin Casey (Faber 25s) The current market...

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His nibs

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HENRY TUBE The new edition of Titus Groan, first published in 1946, is an occasion for celebration. Not that Mervyn Peake's great Gormenghast trilogy has ever been undervalued...

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PENELOPE HOUSTON Titania Parmenia Migel (Michael Joseph 50s) There is a scene in Ingmar Bergman's Smiles of a Summer Night in which an old woman begins to tell a story....

Shorter notices

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An Encyclopaedia of Parliament Norman Wilding and Philip Laundy (Cassell 84s). The third revised edition of this excellent parlia- mentary reference book claims to have been...

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Foxed HILARY SPURLING Volpone (Old Vic) All's Well That Ends Well (Aldwych) Our two leading companies opened last week in two great Jacobean comedies, written probably within...

Juvenile leads ARTS

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PAUL GRINKE Most exhibitions one sees in the course of the year induce a complacent glow of reassurance. Old friends are predictably acclaimed, new talents flower or wither...

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The Comedians (Coliseum, 'X')

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CINEMA Who's magoofed? PENELOPE HOUSTON Who Are You, Polly Maggoo? (Cameo Poly and Cameo Victoria, 'A') It's just over thirty years since Graham Greene was writing...

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Hoist by Hoist MUSIC

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EDWARD BOYLE Last Tuesday's Festival Hall performance of Rossini's Stabat Mater by Giulini and the New Philharmonia Orchestra and Chorus was not flawless—the soloists, except...

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Restoring the City's confidence MONEY

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NICIIOLAS DAVENPORT The stock markets, as I have said, can suffer bouts of hysteria but when they return to normal—as they have at present—they can generally be relied upon to...


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CHRISTOPHER FILDES `The financial history of France is not such that any French government can pretend to a superior knowledge of the right policy for the world. . . . If the...

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Time to mend the fences

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BUSINESS VIEWPOINT RFAY GEDDES The 1960s will be remembered, among other things, for the attempts of the Government, industry and trade unions to 'work out their re- spective...

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Backing a banker

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PORTFOLIO JOHN BULL This prolonged period of 8 per cent Bank rate may not be exactly ideal for gilt-edged holders, of which I am one, but it is wonderful for bank profits. Mr,...

ffolkes's business alphabet

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After the axe

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ADVERTISING ROGER PEMBERTON With home demand sh'ortly to be budgeted away and with exports sanctified, What will happen to the British advertising industry whose product is,...

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Market report

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• CUSTOS Enjoying a short respite from ministerial pro- nouncements on the economy, the market is calmer. Last week's violent fluctuations left the Financial Times index just ....

Body of knowledge

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Sir: I write to protest strongly against some assertions in the letter from G. Armstrong. under the above title, in your issue of 19 January. It is completely untrue of any...

Libraries amalgamated

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Sir : I would be interested to know whether any of your readers could justify the existing division of reference library services in provincial cities between the Public...

The crisis that never was

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LETTERS From John Biggs-Davison, MP, Dr lames S. Frew, J. S. .Whittingharn, Lady Miller, Dr H. Stuart Hogg, Stanley Loh, P. E. Mallon, Mrs Yvonne C. R. Brock, Rayner...

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What is pornography ?

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Sir: Your correspondent Christopher Purcell (Letters, 12 January) does not seem to realise that individuals sometimes 'flout the law' by, for ex- ample, forcing a customs man to...

Retrenchment at LB.I ranch

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Sir: Stochastic, forsooth! If any more of your writers possess a persona, however charismatic, would you please have it encapsulated before my choler escalates to murder.

Animal crackers

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Sir: May I be permitted to offer my warm thanks to Mr Kenneth Allsop for his wholly delightful article in last week's SPECTATOR (19 January), which came as an oasis of pleasure...


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Sir: How - right your contributors Messrs Raven and Waugh are to protest about the erosion of our liberties under this Government (29 December). From the far left, interfering...

Home thoughts afloat

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Sir: The Advanced Learner's Dictionary of Current English defines the word 'offer' as: 'hold out, put forward, to be accepted or refused; say what one is willing to pay, give or...

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Le petomane

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Sir: As one contemplates the advertisement, the appearance of which you have permitted on page 725 of your issue of 8 December, one wonders how much lower we can sink, when what...

Poetry for you

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AFTERTHOUGHT JOHN WELLS As his particular contribution to the 'I'm Back- ing Britain' Movement the Poet Laureate, Mr C. D'A. 'Monk' Lewis. has been at his lathe at five-thiity...

Amorous prawn

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Sir: Matthew Arnold's letter to Clough of Feb- ruary 1849 is entirely concerned with his criticism of Clough's poems. The last two sentences of the letter run: 'Reflect too, as...

Double-think in Eire

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Sir: From time to time you print accounts of curious national mental processes. What do you think of this one? Some months ago an advertisement (spon- sored by an Eire...

• Echo de Paris

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Sir: I can't imagine what you or your readers 'make of the abusive letters Lord and Lady Strabolgi and Mr Francis King keep sending you (Letters, 5 and 19 January) about my...

A hundred years ago

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From the 'Spectator', 25 January 1868—Lord Stanley made a very able speech at. the Bristol Conservative demonstration on Wednesday,— though his ability was chiefly shown, as...

Sir Timothy Beeswax

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Sir: You might find the following extract mildly diverting. It is taken from The Duke's Children by Anthony Trollope and is a description of Sir Timothy Beeswax, the leader of...

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No. 483: The winners

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Two words, annual and lairds, did more than any of the others to set the tone for No. 483. Though surprisingly few competitors identified the source as Evelyn Waugh's Decline...


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No. 485: The word game Competitors are invited to use the following ten words, taken from the opening passages of a well-known work of literature, in the order given, to...

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Chess no. 371

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PHILIDOR W. B. Rice (1st prize, Good Companions, 1914). White to play and mate in two moves, solution next week. Solution to no. 370 (van Dijk): Kt - B 3, threat Kt (B 5)...


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Across 1 Squire held in, eventually gave up (12) 9 'Without -, where length, breadth, and highth, And time and place are lost' (Milton) (9) 10 The start of a good gallop! (5) 11...