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What Marlowe would have wanted

Charles Nicholl, 26 November 1987

Faustus and the Censor 
by William Empson, edited by John Henry Jones.
Blackwell, 226 pp., £17.50, September 1987, 0 631 15675 5
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... as Dee put it. We are entering here that arena of controversy which the studies of the late Frances Yates illuminated so brilliantly. This arena was as much political as philosophical, and the threat (as it was perceived) of occultist-oriented cliques like Ralegh’s ‘Durham House set’ was taken very seriously. We know that Marlowe was ...


Frank Kermode, 8 June 1995

Angus Wilson 
by Margaret Drabble.
Secker, 714 pp., £20, May 1995, 0 436 20038 4
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... as profound a Dickensian as Wilson himself, the possibly more level-headed equal of his friend Frances Yates as a student of Renaissance occultism. He was a tennis player good enough to turn out at Wimbledon, a fine pianist and an exceptional linguist. He was happy to help the less well endowed, me for example, with magisterial solutions to technical ...

Homage to Rabelais

M.A. Screech, 20 September 1984

... to give its lucky swallower the linguistic science of Kurt Baldinger and the historical empathy of Frances Yates. Danto’s pill would take a lot of swallowing. It would still be no good if the swallower was not already endowed with a lively perception of the ludicrous. Knowledge without humour gets you nowhere with Rabelais. Rabelais’s one and only ...

The Wickedest Woman in Paris

Colm Tóibín, 6 September 2007

Red Carpets and Other Banana Skins 
by Rupert Everett.
Abacus, 406 pp., £7.99, July 2007, 978 0 349 12058 4
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... short and was wearing a green Halston trouser suit.’) Next on the list are Bob Geldof and Paula Yates: According to Alan [Parker], Bob had a cock so big that he needed a wheelbarrow to carry it around in . . . But one didn’t need to have coffee with Alan Parker to know that Bob had a big dick. Everything about him announced the fact: the incredibly ...

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