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In praise of Geoffrey Lloyd

Helen King, 8 October 1992

Methods and Problems in Greek Science: Selected Papers 
by G.E.R. Lloyd.
Cambridge, 457 pp., £45, May 1991, 0 521 37419 7
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... Geoffrey Lloyd has held the position of Professor of Ancient Philosophy and Science in the University of Cambridge since 1985. The creation of this personal chair not only honoured a great and generous scholar, but also gave a much-needed boost to the growing interest in ancient science: a subject which, over the last two centuries, had been pushed to the margins of Classical scholarship while simultaneously being eclipsed by the rise of modern science ...

Aristotle and Women

Jonathan Barnes, 16 February 1984

Science, Folklore and Ideology 
by G.E.R. Lloyd.
Cambridge, 260 pp., £25, July 1983, 0 521 25314 4
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... history – that is to say, to the Greek history – of biology, botany and medicine. That is what Geoffrey Lloyd does in his Science, Folklore and Ideology. The enterprise, as Lloyd acknowledges, is not without its difficulties. But he plausibly maintains that the Classical scholar is in a peculiarly favourable ...

How Shall We Repaint the Kitchen?

Ian Hacking: The Colour Red, 1 November 2007

Cognitive Variations: Reflections on the Unity and Diversity of the Human Mind 
by G.E.R. Lloyd.
Oxford, 201 pp., £27.50, April 2007, 978 0 19 921461 7
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... is peculiar to our local ways of living, and how much is determined by our shared animal nature? Geoffrey Lloyd’s book is the best recent overall summary of the state of play in the discussion of our social behaviour. The game? Nature v. nurture. That is a ‘convenient jingle of words’, as Francis Galton wrote in 1874, when he coined the ...


Edmund Leach, 15 July 1982

Myth, Religion and Society: Structuralist Essays 
by M. Detienne, L. Gernet, J-P. Vernant and P. Vidal-Naquet, edited by R.L. Gordon.
Cambridge/Editions de la Maison des Sciences de l’Homme, 306 pp., £20, January 1982, 0 521 22780 1
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The Anthropological Circle: Symbol, Function, History 
by Marc Augé.
Cambridge/Editions de la Maison des Sciences de l’Homme, 131 pp., £12.50, January 1982, 0 521 23236 8
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... the doubt. One of Vidal-Naquet’s essays is dedicated to Moses Finley, another to Simon Pembroke; Geoffrey Lloyd is cited in a number of places. But the dilemma is plain enough. The anthropologist’s problem is how to make plausible sense out of a vast excess of raw material. The drastic reductionism implicit in structuralist method is of value because ...

Aspasia’s Sisters

Mary Lefkowitz, 1 September 1983

The Family, Women and Death: Comparative Studies 
by Sally Humphreys.
Routledge, 210 pp., £15, March 1983, 0 7100 9322 5
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The Golden Lyre: The Themes of the Greek Lyric Poets 
by David Campbell.
Duckworth, 312 pp., £28, February 1983, 0 7156 1563 7
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... of the essays have not yet been published, but I have seen in manuscript an admirable survey by Geoffrey Lloyd of doctors’ attitudes toward their women patients. Humphreys observes in her commentary on this paper that the doctors’ questioning of women patients constitutes ‘almost the only source we have for communication between men and women in ...

Spiv v. Gentleman

Jonathan Barnes: Bickering souls in Ancient Greece and China, 23 October 2003

The Way and the Word: Science and Medicine in Early China and Greece 
by Geoffrey Lloyd and Nathan Sivin.
Yale, 348 pp., £25, February 2003, 0 300 09297 0
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... Already hailed in America as ‘climactic’ and ‘monumental’, The Way and the Word is the product of a collaboration between an eminent Hellenist and an expert Sinologist. It compares ancient Greek thought and ancient Chinese thought. The period of comparison is officially the six centuries from about 400 BC to about 200 AD, but in fact a considerable part of the Greek material is taken from the fifth century BC ...

Not Not To Be

Malcolm Schofield: Aristotle’s legacy, 17 February 2005

A New History of Western Philosophy. Vol. I: Ancient Philosophy 
by Anthony Kenny.
Oxford, 341 pp., £17.99, June 2005, 0 19 875273 3
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... much present-day commentary on ancient philosophy) is not for them. Others now writing – Geoffrey Lloyd, Walter Burkert, Pierre Vidal-Naquet, Josiah Ober, Andrea Nightingale come to mind – do much more in very different ways to respond to the cultural density and complexity of ancient Greek thought, and to explore its development within ...

Short Cuts

Thomas Jones: Politicians v. the press, 22 July 2004

... John Lloyd, currently the editor of the Financial Times Magazine, resigned as associate editor of the New Statesman in April 2003. His reasons for leaving were published in a ‘farewell article’, in which he criticised ‘a large part of the British Left’ for its opposition to the war in Iraq, described the Statesman as ‘a sort of upmarket version of the Daily Mirror’, and concluded that because ‘the NS believes that Blair and the US are the problem, not the solution,’ it was ‘time to recognise that Blairites like me should not appear regularly in its pages ...

The Finchley Factor

Geoffrey Wheatcroft: Thatcher in Israel, 13 September 2018

Margaret Thatcher and the Middle East 
by Azriel Bermant.
Cambridge, 274 pp., £22.99, September 2017, 978 1 316 60630 8
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... by then returned to office as foreign secretary in the wartime coalition government led by David Lloyd George. The British government would ‘view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavours to facilitate the achievement of this object’. Although there was realpolitik behind the ...

Claiming victory

John Lloyd, 21 November 1985

The Miners’ Strike 
by Geoffrey Goodman.
Pluto, 213 pp., £4.50, September 1985, 0 7453 0073 1
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Strike: Thatcher, Scargill and the Miners 
by Peter Wilsher, Donald Macintyre and Michael Jones.
Deutsch, 284 pp., £9.95, September 1985, 0 233 97825 9
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... of reasons for believing that there was no choice but to fight an opponent who had declared war. Geoffrey Goodman makes the first case: Margaret Thatcher saw the NUM – Arthur Scargill in particular – as the embodiment of all that she held to be endemic in Britain’s economic decline: monopoly trade-unionism in a state industry subsidised well beyond ...

Renewing the Struggle

Penelope Fitzgerald: Edward White Benson, 18 June 1998

Father of the Bensons: The Life of Edward White Benson, Sometime Archbiship of Canterbury 
by Geoffrey Palmer and Noel Lloyd.
Lennard, 226 pp., £16.99, May 1998, 1 85291 138 7
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... It’s more of a difficulty than a help that so much has been written about the Bensons (Palmer and Lloyd have already done a biography of Fred Benson) and that the family should have written so much about themselves. The Archbishop kept diaries, and his wife Minnie wrote two – one a dutiful sightseer’s journal, kept at her husband’s suggestion on her honeymoon, another one 20 years later which told some, at least, of the story of her heart ...


Ian Gilmour: The Cliveden Set, 19 October 2000

The Cliveden Set: Portrait of an Exclusive Fraternity 
by Norman Rose.
Cape, 277 pp., £20, August 2000, 0 224 06093 7
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... and viewy’, a Roman Catholic who converted to Christian Science, became private secretary to Lloyd George in the First World War, and the British Ambassador in Washington in the Second; Robert Brand, thought by Jan Smuts to be ‘the most outstanding member of a very able team’ in South Africa, who became an investment banker and remained easily the ...

Thirty-Eight Thousand Bunches of Sweet Peas

Jonathan Parry: Lord Northcliffe’s Empire, 1 December 2022

The Chief: The Life of Lord Northcliffe 
by Andrew Roberts.
Simon & Schuster, 545 pp., £25, August 2022, 978 1 3985 0869 9
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... of fascination; fourteen books about him had already appeared by 1959, when Reginald Pound and Geoffrey Harmsworth’s enormous official biography was published. Reviewing it, A.J.P. Taylor set out a line which wise commentators have followed ever since. He appreciated Northcliffe’s unique contribution to the newspaper industry and his brilliance as a ...

Where their real face was known

John Lloyd, 6 December 1990

The KGB: The Inside Story of the Foreign Operations 
by Christopher Andrew and Oleg Gordievsky.
Hodder, 704 pp., £20, October 1990, 0 340 48561 2
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Inside the KGB: Myth and Reality 
by Vladimir Kuzichkin.
Deutsch, 406 pp., £14.99, October 1990, 0 233 98616 2
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... which is Kuzichkin’s implausible argument. Instead, they cite with approval the historian Geoffrey Hosking, who takes the view that the Brezhnev leadership did secure dominance over the KGB, but ‘at the cost of absorbing much of its outlook on the world’. That outlook was set by the amalgam of dogma and insularity which has been, and still ...

Two Spots and a Bubo

Hugh Pennington: Use soap and water, 21 April 2005

Return of the Black Death: The World’s Greatest Serial Killer 
by Susan Scott and Christopher Duncan.
Wiley, 310 pp., £16.99, May 2004, 0 470 09000 6
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The Great Plague: The Story of London’s Most Deadly Year 
by Lloyd Moote and Dorothy Moote.
Johns Hopkins, 357 pp., £19.95, April 2004, 0 8018 7783 0
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Plague: The Mysterious Past and Terrifying Future of the World’s Most Dangerous Disease 
by Wendy Orent.
Free Press, 276 pp., £17.99, May 2004, 0 7432 3685 8
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... It’s possible, but unlikely; these positive results should not be dismissed lightly. Lloyd and Dorothy Moote and Wendy Orent don’t doubt that Yersinia was responsible. Lloyd Moote is a historian of the 17th century, Dorothy Moote a microbiologist and teacher. Their aim was to supplant Defoe’s Journal of the ...

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