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Unusual Endowments

Patrick Collinson, 30 March 2000

Philip Sidney: A Double Life 
by Alan Stewart.
Chatto, 400 pp., £20, February 2000, 0 7011 6859 5
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... in an age of religious wars, both hot and cold. It is this considerable challenge to which Alan Stewart responds in only the second biography of Philip Sidney in almost fifty years. Stewart draws on foreign archives, as well as on the Languet-Sidney correspondence and other letters secured by the private scholar ...

Rigging and Bending

Simon Adams: James VI & I, 9 October 2003

The Cradle King: A Life of James VI & I 
by Alan Stewart.
Chatto, 438 pp., £20, February 2003, 0 7011 6984 2
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... Lynch rather regretfully admit, has not yet been superseded, despite numerous subsequent studies. Alan Stewart is a lively writer, but heavily (and uncritically) reliant on the established published sources and liable to turn reported into direct speech to keep the narrative flowing. His bibliography is impressive, but appears to have been only partially ...

Verie Sillie People

Keith Thomas: Bacon’s Lives, 7 February 2013

The Oxford Francis Bacon Vol. I: Early Writings 1584-96 
edited by Alan Stewart, with Harriet Knight.
Oxford, 1066 pp., £200, September 2012, 978 0 19 818313 6
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... and conflicting objectives that Bacon composed the works contained in the collection edited by Alan Stewart with Harriet Knight. The Oxford Francis Bacon is a major scholarly project conceived by the late Graham Rees and administered nowadays by an editorial advisory board of 16 experts under the direction of Brian Vickers, the leading Baconian ...

The Great Plant Collector

Alan Bold, 22 January 1987

... rapids, escaped from a whirlpool, There seemed nothing he wouldn’t do. David Douglas, in his Stewart tartan coat, Saw the Columbia River as a source For trees. In 1825 he scooped The Douglas fir, the noble fir, the Sitka spruce, The ponderosa, the bigcone, the sugar And the western white pines. This treasure Went to London. ‘You will begin to think I ...

Who is Stewart Home?

Iain Sinclair, 23 June 1994

... a conspiracy of the unheard, and with one man in particular, the sharp-witted London activist Stewart Home.Home, in stark contrast to the brothers on the Celtic fringe, was a dynamo of invention, recycling Dadaist provocation into fugues of inspired counter-terror, then moving on. A suspicion lingers in the scorch marks that Home’s major project is ...

Aberdeen rocks

Jenny Turner: Stewart Home, 9 May 2002

69 Things to Do with a Dead Princess 
by Stewart Home.
Canongate, 182 pp., £9.99, March 2002, 9781841951829
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... I hadn’t read a Stewart Home book for years when I started the new one, 69 Things to Do with a Dead Princess. Let me be more precise. I hadn’t read a Home book properly since 1996, when I spent six months in a room in Brixton, so damp it had plants from outside growing up the insides of the walls, trying to write about him but unable to build a journalistic structure into which Home’s work might fit ...

Sea-shells and Tigers

Philip Kitcher, 18 March 1999

Life’s Other Secret: The New Mathematics of the Living World 
by Ian Stewart.
Penguin, 320 pp., £20, June 1998, 0 7139 9161 5
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... published in 1917. Although they have excited the admiration of some important thinkers, including Alan Turing and the biologists John Tyler Bonner and Stephen Jay Gould, Thompson’s ideas do not figure prominently in the biological curriculum or the mainstream of research. By contrast, that mainstream takes very seriously an unguarded remark of the youthful ...

Diary

Mike Selvey: Dumping Gower, 24 September 1992

... racing. ‘I think a cup of coffee is in order,’ I said to Martin Johnson of the Independent and Alan Lee of the Times, ‘and the only place on the ground that serves a proper filtered cup of the stuff is the Hove Shop.’ Most County grounds have an establishment like this, where anything that can reasonably be sold at a profit ...

John Stuart Mill’s Forgotten Victory

Alasdair MacIntyre, 16 October 1980

An Examination of Sir William Hamilton’s Philosophy 
by John Stuart Mill, edited by J.M. Robson.
Routledge, 625 pp., £15.95, February 1980, 0 7100 0178 9
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... even if sometimes not very good ones. The second view is central to the philosophies of Reid and Stewart. But both Reid and Stewart believed that at least some of the truths which we know without supporting argument require sense-experience to be elicited; and thus, although they are not derived from sense-experience, they ...

A Single Crash of the Cymbals

Roger Parker, 7 December 1989

Franz Liszt. Vol. II: The Weimar Years 1848-1861 
by Alan Walker.
Faber, 626 pp., £35, August 1989, 0 571 15322 4
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Franz Liszt: A Chronicle of his Life in Pictures and Documents 
by Ernst Burger, translated by Stewart Spencer.
Princeton, 358 pp., £45, October 1989, 0 691 09133 1
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... The second part of Alan Walker’s projected three-volume life of Liszt opens with events any biographer would relish. At the height of an immensely successful, indeed unprecedented career as an international virtuoso of the piano, Liszt, aged 35 and (as he felt) nel mezzo del cammin di nostra vita, decided on a complete change ...

Alan Bennett chooses four paintings for schools

Alan Bennett: Studying the Form, 2 April 1998

... choice, Hambletonian, Rubbing Down, by George Stubbs, was painted in 1800. It hangs at Mount Stewart, a National Trust property in Northern Ireland. Hambletonian was one of a string of racehorses belonging to Sir Henry Vane Tempest, a landowner from County Durham. Having already won some important races, the horse was matched at Newmarket in 1799 against ...

Grail Trail

C.H. Roberts, 4 March 1982

The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail 
by Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln.
Cape, 445 pp., £8.95, January 1982, 0 224 01735 7
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The Foreigner: A Search for the First-Century Jesus 
by Desmond Stewart.
Hamish Hamilton, 181 pp., £9.95, October 1981, 0 241 10686 9
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Satan: The Early Christian Tradition 
by Jeffrey Burton Russell.
Cornell, 258 pp., £14, November 1981, 0 8014 1267 6
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... of scholarship and more than a dash of fiction or imaginative reconstruction. The late Desmond Stewart’s book (which Alan Neame, who introduces it, neatly describes as an ‘intuitive biography’) belongs to the second class. Though it draws on scholarship, it is not a book for scholars; his reading, though wide, was ...

Diary

Alan Bennett: What I did in 2016, 5 January 2017

... him away. How long after this it was that Bowie had his breakthrough I’m not sure.15 January. Alan Rickman dies. In the first week of The Habit of Art at the National in 2009 Michael Gambon, playing Auden, was taken ill and rushed to St Thomas’s. He recovered quite quickly, and indeed got out of the ambulance saying: ‘I know what they’re all doing ...

Got to go make that dollar

Alex Abramovich: Otis Redding, 3 January 2019

Otis Redding: An Unfinished Life 
by Jonathan Gould.
Crown, 544 pp., £12.99, May 2018, 978 0 307 45395 2
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... vary), he drove Jenkins to Memphis to record at Stax and persuaded the studio’s founder, Jim Stewart, to let him sing a few songs too. ‘The first track they attempted was the latest of Otis’s Little Richard impersonations,’ Gould writes. ‘With Steve Cropper playing rhythm and Johnny Jenkins on lead, the band struck an uneasy balance between ...

Diary

Alan Bennett: Allelujah!, 3 January 2019

... you will be delighted to know that a pub in the Yorkshire town of Otley is to be renamed the Alan Bennett in your honour in order to celebrate Yorkshire Day.’ Fortunately this bizarre baptism is only for a month; were it longer I fear it would soon be reflected in the takings. The body responsible for this kindly gesture is the Otley Pub Club, which ...

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