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5 July 1984
Random Variables 
by Lord Rothschild.
Collins, 238 pp., £12.50, May 1984, 0 00 217334 4
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... as a trifle baroque. Then there are representations, in various genres, of members of the Rothschild family beginning with Gutle who was born in 1753, the daughter of Baruch Schnapper, a Frankfurt tradesman. A glance at the contents shows an even greater variety of subject-matters, in chunks varying from seven or eight lines to 50 pages. One might say ...
19 April 1984
Dear Lord RothschildBirds, Butterflies and History 
by Miriam Rothschild.
Hutchinson, 398 pp., £14.95, November 1983, 0 09 153740 1
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... one of his nieces, was a prime example of the absurdity of that custom. Walter, the second Baron Rothschild, great-great-grandson of the fortune-founding Mayer Amschel, was manifestly without any talent at all for finance, had absolutely no need to earn a living and had a younger brother who possessed in full measure the very abilities in which he was ...

At Somerset House

Peter Campbell: Zaha Hadid

16 December 2004
... their teeth on run-of-the-mill buildings. The Pritzker Prize juries (this year’s was headed by Lord Rothschild and included Frank Gehry, who won the prize in 1989) have, over the years, chosen a significant number of winners (Gehry, Rem Koolhaas and now Hadid) whose reputations, at the time of the award, depended to a great extent on small buildings ...
2 August 1984
A Science Policy for Britain 
by Tam Dalyell.
Longman, 135 pp., £5.95, September 1983, 0 582 90257 6
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... irrelevance that was going to be cured by the ‘customer-contractor principle’ recommended by Lord Rothschild in 1971. From now on, EHE would have to earn part of its income by undertaking specific research projects directly commissioned by government departments, acting as ‘customers’s on behalf of the public. Thus, the Department of Health and ...

Honest Graft

Michael Brock

23 June 1988
Corruption in British Politics, 1895-1930 
by G.R. Searle.
Oxford, 448 pp., £19.50, November 1987, 0 19 822915 1
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... by royal command. These may be ranked as small imprudences, however, and when they are set beside Lord Randolph Churchill’s relationship with Lord Rothschild no decline in standards is discernible. If ‘corruption’ is used in the narrow sense to denote the impingement of private interests on public decisions, even ...

The German Ocean

D.J. Enright: Suffolk Blues

17 September 1998
The Rings of Saturn 
by W.G. Sebald, translated by Michael Hulse.
Harvill, 296 pp., £15.99, June 1998, 1 86046 398 3
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... sightseers (‘they reminded me of dressed-up circus dogs or seals’), and driven by the present Lord Somerleyton, his ticket satchel slung about him. Later, in a section on the Belgian Congo linking Joseph Conrad (who improved his English by reading the Lowestoft newspapers) with Roger Casement (whom Conrad much admired for his integrity), Sebald remarks on ...
12 October 1989
The Intelligence Game: Illusions and Delusions of International Espionage 
by James Rusbridger.
Bodley Head, 320 pp., £12.95, August 1989, 0 370 31242 2
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The Truth about Hollis 
by W.J. West.
Duckworth, 230 pp., £14.95, September 1989, 0 7156 2286 2
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... these ‘controllers’? That question is answered very forcefully by Rusbridger. In 1963, Lord Denning wrote (apparently meaning it): ‘The Security Services (MI5) are, in the eye of the law, ordinary citizens with no powers greater than anyone else.’ That view was recently put in perspective by the Master of the Rolls. ‘It is essential in the ...
23 April 1987
Molehunt: The Full Story of the Soviet Mole in MI5 
by Nigel West.
Weidenfeld, 208 pp., £10.95, March 1987, 0 297 79150 8
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... a solution. Peter Wright in Tasmania was astonished to get a letter from a former MI5 colleague, Lord Rothschild. The peer enclosed a first-class air ticket to London and begged Wright to use it. Before long Wright found himself being introduced to Chapman Pincher, the celebrated spy writer from the Daily Express, who, ...

One Per Cent

Jonathan Steinberg: The House of Rothschild

28 October 1999
The World’s Banker: The History of the House of Rothschild 
by Niall Ferguson.
Weidenfeld, 1309 pp., £30, October 1998, 0 297 81539 3
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... The Peer and the Peri was performed for the first time at the Savoy Theatre. In Act II, a restless Lord Chancellor, troubled by lovesickness rather than the expense of his furnishings, cannot sleep. As he wanders through his lodgings, he sings the famous ‘Nightmare Song’. One of the elements of the nightmare is what would now be called a venture capital ...
27 September 1990
A Very Decided Preference: Life with Peter Medawar 
by Jean Medawar.
Oxford, 256 pp., £15, August 1990, 0 19 217779 6
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The Threat and the Glory: Reflections on Science and Scientists 
by Peter Medawar, edited by David Pyke.
Oxford, 291 pp., £15, August 1990, 0 19 217778 8
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... of the customer/contractor principle for financing research, which is associated with the late Lord Rothschild. It frightened the scientific community but, although harmful, it did less damage than we expected because the ‘customers’ don’t know what they need or what they may be able to get from research and therefore rely, to a great extent, on ...
25 October 1990
No Other Choice 
by George Blake.
Cape, 288 pp., £12.99, September 1990, 0 224 03067 1
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Inside Intelligence 
by Anthony Cavendish.
Collins, 181 pp., £12.95, October 1990, 9780002157421
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... this on to the Prime Minister in a private letter. Eventually, someone (probably the old grass Lord Rothschild, a former intelligence chief who was prepared to go to any lengths to deflect attention from his own pro-Russian past) told Sir Maurice that his secret about positive vetting was known. Oldfield confessed to Sir Robert Armstrong, secretary to ...

Ducking and Dodging

R.W. Johnson: Agent Zigzag

19 July 2007
Agent Zigzag 
by Ben Macintyre.
Bloomsbury, 372 pp., £14.99, January 2007, 978 0 7475 8794 1
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... is often deeply amused by Chapman’s later ability to interact on equal terms with mandarins like Lord Rothschild: having a bounder for a subject means there is a Flashman-like fascination in seeing just how far he can go. But this shouldn’t blind one to his astonishing abilities. Once inducted into the espionage world he soon became a dab hand at the ...

Tunnel Vision

Jenny Diski: Princess Diana

2 August 2007
The Diana Chronicles 
by Tina Brown.
Century, 481 pp., £18.99, June 2007, 978 1 84605 286 6
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by Sarah Bradford.
Penguin, 443 pp., £7.99, July 2007, 978 0 14 027671 8
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... she lists in her seven pages of acknowledgments, she knows all (two full pages) the right people (Lord Rothschild, Henry Kissinger, Bruce Oldfield, Emma Soames), quantities (three paragraphs) of the right researchers, and even the right London hotel owner, who made ‘a room available every time I hit town’ for ‘a demanding writer with a moody ...

Queen Croesus

David Cannadine

13 February 1992
Royal Fortune: Tax, Money and the Monarchy 
by Phillip Hall.
Bloomsbury, 294 pp., £18.99, February 1992, 0 7475 1133 0
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... acceded to the throne as Edward VII in 1901, he immediately asked the Conservative Government of Lord Salisbury whether he might be ‘relieved’ of the income tax he paid on the Civil List. Much to the King’s regret, the Cabinet refused to budge, arguing that he must continue to honour his mother’s pledge to pay, and an announcement to this effect was ...
18 August 1994
... Reach for the Stars,* which seems for half its length to concern her memories of her great friend Lord Mountbatten. They were in the middle of writing a novel together (Love at the Helm – ‘he was to do the plot ... then I would do the love’) when he was killed. She mentions, in case we had forgotten, that he was Viceroy of India and swerves suddenly ...

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