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D iana, Princess of Wales, died, aged 36. She was killed with her friend Dodi Fayed, aged 42, in a car crash in Paris. Her brother, Earl Spencer, said: 'I always believed the...

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The Spectator, 56 Doughty Street, London WC1N 2LLO Telephone: 0171-405

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1706; Fax 0171-242 0603 THE RIGHT AND WRONG GRIEF W e were often told, during the early Thatcher years, that we were two nations. Two nations, economically, that is. Since the...

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What really happened to the government this August SION SIMON I t was fitting that Tony Blair of all our prime ministers should have been the one to speak to and for the...

Bruce Anderson is away.

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The Spectator

TREVOR McDONALD I have perhaps rather sadly reached a stage in my journalistic life when I'm very rarely disturbed at home in the middle of the night or in those dark,...

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A moral dilemma involving one's mule fracturing a leg in the Andes MATTHEW PARRIS Guanay, Bolivia Picture yourself at 15,000 feet in the Andes, looking out across the high...

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They did not regard her as achieving it in life. has covered her with it in death THE STORY that ended so horribly in that functional concrete Parisian tunnel early on Sunday...

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Second opinion

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RECENTLY, while on duty at the week- end, I had — for legal reasons which I need not detail — to call upon the ser- vices of a social worker. I therefore dialled the number for...

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. . . and in doing so, Nicholas Farrell questions whether the hated paparazzi could really have kept pace with it Paris `STEP on it,' I told the driver as we left the Ritz and...

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Dalyell attacks the government's 'hypocrisy' in refusing to postpone the Scottish referendum THE Scottish people are being asked by the government to vote Yes Yes in the...

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BAYREUTH lays on the direct road from Munich to Berlin. Since the reunification of Germany, the Federal authorities have begun enormous public works to improve what is now an...

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Ross Clark on the new patients covered by private health insurance THEY SHOOT horses, don't they? Not these days. They set horses' legs in plaster, treat them for bronchitis,...

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Mind your language

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I WONDER what the poor Princess will have on her tombstone. We all know about not being on oath in lapidary inscriptions, but I have noticed recently that the virtues prized by...


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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...

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Richard West on how the Princess's death could add to Scottish passions beyond the referendum THE PROUDEST achievement of Daniel Defoe was helping to get the Scots to abol-...

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A privacy law comes too late for her but can save other lives PAUL JOHNSON P rincess Diana's death was the result of a public sin: the insatiable desire of people to know...

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The price of advice

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I HESITATE to define a management con- sultant as somebody who borrows your watch to tell you the time and then walks off with it, for that line comes from Robert Townsend's...

Just adjust

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REACTING to crisis by playing to their strengths, the Thais are to open a Sensuali- ty Bank. It is being promoted by Oy Bm, her country's most famous mama-san. She has already...


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I AM PLEASED that some investors call- ing themselves Alchemy have come to the rescue of A.G. Stanley (FADS). This oddly- named company had been wilting in the clammy hands of...

Growling and barking

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LAMBERTO 'Wait for me' Dini has said it again. Europe should not start a single cur- rency until countries such as Italy (where he is foreign minister these days) are ready for...

Losers all round

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NOW THERE are losers all round. The tigers are unbounced. They will find money harder to get and will have to pay for it, and the spring will go out of their stride. As for...


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Those Asian tigers have turned into pussy-kyats there must be a conspiracy CHRISTOPHER FILDES I t's all a conspiracy. We can take that from Muhammad Matathir, Malaysia's vocal...

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Excuse our French

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Sir: I am sure that every one of your read- ers must enjoy Peter Jones's incursions into the arcana of the ancient world as much as I do — especially when the affairs of the...

The Dome — yes or no?

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Sir: Your leader (30 August) was a master- piece of equivocation. To dome or not to dome, that is the answer. . . I was remind- ed of the great Bob Newhart who would recreate...

Patient heal thyself Sir: Writing as a reasonably compassionate physician

The Spectator

and a long-time admirer of the writing and attitudes of Jeffrey Bernard, I would like to support his comments about pharmacology (Low life, 16 August). There is little doubt...

LETTERS We are all to blame

The Spectator

Sir: Celebrity-hunting should be against the law; the rabid dogs of the tabloid press hounded and killed their prey at last. Agents of the press are not the ones with blood on...

Sir: Jeffrey Bernard's column struck a chord. Earlier this year

The Spectator

I spent 18 days in a French hospital. When I felt better, I smoked. The nurses ticked me off but didn't stop me. One day, when I was smoking, the surgeon arrived. The nurses all...

Matrimonial ties

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Sir: Mae Kaul (Letters, 30 August) states that 'money and influence' can buy an annulment in the Catholic Church. For those of us who work in marriage tribunals — work that is...

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Lasting value

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Sir: In his thought-provoking article on the classics (Arts, 30 August) Michael Tanner quotes Dr Johnson on the subject, 'Nothing can please many and please long, but just...

Shaky platform

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Sir: In 1973 when I was editor, Private Eye reported that Tom Stacey's publicity firm was heavily in debt and that a number of cheques had bounced. In a letter to the edi- tor...

Scotland yardstick

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Sir: I have returned from holiday abroad (neither, I hasten to add, in Chiantishire nor in Cape Cod) to read (Letters, 16 August) Mr Gross's enquiry following Jef- frey...

Let Schlieffen dogs lie

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Sir: The article of 23 August, 'We find Alice von Schlieffen', still does not explain what the elaborate jest was all about. It became clear early on that something was out of...

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Why, sadly, Mohamed Al Fayed must accept a share of the blame STEPHEN GLOVER A t the beginning the media blamed itself. It was taken as an article of faith that the paparazzi...

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The Spectator

The human comedy Philip Hensher HOGARTH: A LIFE AND A WORLD by Jenny Uglow Faber, £25.00, pp.794 o g arthian' is standard reviewers' slang for a particular tiresome...

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The art of Big Daddy

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John Bowen SPEAKING OF DIAGHILEV by John Drummond Faber, £20.00, pp.357 S ome years ago a radio play of mine, The False Diaghilev, was reviewed on Kalei- doscope by the ballet...


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SUBSCRIBE TODAY SUBSCRIPTION RATES 1 Year 6 months UK £93 £47 Europe £104 £52 USA (2nd class) $151 $76 USA (1st class) $175 $88 Rest of World (2nd) £107 £54 Rest of World...

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Gambits, ploys and checks

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The farther shores of fiction

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D.J. Taylor EXTENDED SIMILES by Jenny Joseph Bloodaxe, £9.95, pp. 160 T hree decades on from its late 60s hey- day, it's tempting to ask what happened to the entity known as...

What sort of feminists were these?

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Michael Hulse THE FIRST STONE by Helen Garner Bloomsbury, £6.99, pp.216 T his important book takes its fire from a sexual harassment case brought in 1992 by two students at...

Clerihew Corner

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John Clare Wasn't always quite there, But when he was, he wrote some very poetic words, Especially about birds. James Michie

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Seeing is believing

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Michael Bywater VISUAL EXPLANATIONS by Edward it Tufte Graphics Press UK £28.00, pp. 157 W e live surrounded by wily, unscrupulous persuaders, advertisers, mar- keting men,...

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A good Cook as Cooks go

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Andrew Barrow PETER COOK: A BIOGRAPHY by Harry Thompson Hodder & Stoughton, £18.99, pp. 516 T wenty-five years ago, I interviewed Peter Cook in his dressing-room at the...

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In the library with a pen

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Alethea Hayter THE CHAPLET OF PEARLS by Harriet Waugh Bloomsbury, £14.99, pp. 217 T he conflict between historical truth and the biographer's preconceptions has been the...

Not the history man

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Douglas Johnson SIMENON: A BIOGRAPHY by Pierre Assouline, translated by Jon Rothschild Chatto and Windus, £20.00, pp. 447 M aigret is writing his report. The case is concluded,...

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A fiery, frozen alp

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Gilbert Adair ERRATA: AN EXAMINED LIFE by George Steiner Weidenfeld & Nicolson, £11.99, pp. 171 G eorge Steiner reminds me of Switzer- land, rather. What I mean by that faintly...

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Freightloads of emotional energy Simon Hoggart on how television news in America has become a series of mini-dramas I 'm just back from a holiday in the Unit- ed States where...

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The Model Modern Art Gallery (Pallant House, Chichester, till 11 October) Small is beautiful Andrew Lambirth I n 1934, a man who was both art patron and art dealer, decided...

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Lucky Stiff (Bridewell) Hurlyburly (Queens) A good bet Sheridan Morley L ucky Stiff is a surprise, and a good one; this charming little show is another triumph for the...

Pop music

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What's the story? Marcus Berkmann T hese are difficult times for anyone unlucky enough to feel utterly indifferent towards Oasis. If you love and revere the band, you have...

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Mrs Brown (PG, selected cinemas) Love in the Highlands Mark Steyn I f there's really no such thing as bad pub- licity, then presumably you couldn't pick a better week to...

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Rising to the occasion Michael Vestey T he moment for which the BBC has been rehearsing for many years came on Sunday, not with the death of the Queen Mother or another senior...


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Sick with jealousy James Delingpole S ince I got married last weekend, I sup- pose I should be the happiest man in the world but I'm not. I should hasten to add that this is...

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The turf

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Ignore instructions Robin Oakley I nstructions sometimes lose something in the translation. Crossing from Cork to Swansea last week on a chartered Greek ferry I was intrigued...

High life

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We shall remember Taki Athens A in the death of JFK, we shall all remember our whereabouts when the terri- ble news came about the Princess of Wales. I happened to be with...

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Country life

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Pray for the Princess Leanda de Lisle I don't suppose I was alone in feeling as if someone I had grown up with had been killed. Diana was only a year younger than me. She was...

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Only the bold Andrew Robson BRILLIANT hand evaluation by Mark Amory and daring card play by Kate Grimond resulted in a most unlikely Slam being made from the Master Duplicate...

Jeffrey Bernard is not writing this week.

The Spectator

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Imperative cooking: anniversary dinners

The Spectator

THIS WEEK is yet another wedding anniversary. On Tuesday Mrs Anderson and I will have eaten 11,200 dinners togeth- er, which means some 56,000 courses both cooked and eaten. So...

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The Spectator

1 U RA ISLE OF I COMPETITION Crime rhyme Jaspistos IN COMPETITION NO. 1998 you were given a rhyme-scheme and invited to write a poem about 'Crime'. My little joke was that...


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IN-THE-STRAND CHESS SIMPSON'S IN-THE-STRAND Dedicated to Diana Raymond Keene WATCHING the television tributes to Diana, Princess of Wales, I was struck by her ubiquity....

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No. 2001: Animal crackers

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The Poetry Society has been awarded a £450,000 National Grant from the Arts Council, as a result of which the London Zoo will have a poet in residence, whose job will include...

Solution to 1324: Beaming

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N ljaidnialigal MU Ell% rj H T©A LMI N CO 'AO I SEI A R OTEEK I T OtM G TO M A N NO VtAHAEI 11S112/ EFIR P I 0 RDAI NS NUMBS E GLI TH Elidia .N1REE NI U...

CROSSWORD 1327: Leading lights by Columba

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A first prize of £30 and a bottle of Graham's Late Bottled Vintage 1991 Port for the first correct solution opened on 22 September, with two runners-up prizes of £20 (or, for UK...

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Quite Wright Simon Barnes IN a week in which we are forced as never before to consider the banal but generally overlooked fact that you cannot get fame or, for that matter,...


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Dear Mary.. . Q. An elderly friend of mine has a precious and elegant walking-stick which belonged to her grandfather. As she constantly wor- ries about losing it, I offered to...