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Bertie and Alys and Ottoline

Alan Ryan, 28 May 1992

The Selected Letters of Bertrand Russell. Vol. I: The Private Years, 1884-1914 
edited by Nicholas Griffin.
Allen Lane, 553 pp., £25, March 1992, 0 7139 9023 6
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... was more than usually frantic and more than usually apologetic: but it was not entirely untypical. Nicholas Griffin, the editor of this volume, reckons that between forty and fifty thousand of Russell’s letters are held by the Bertrand Russell Archives at MacMaster University; the correspondence with Ottoline Morrell alone runs to about a thousand items ...

Russell and Ramsey

Ray Monk, 29 August 1991

Russell’s Idealist Apprenticeship 
by Nicholas Griffin.
Oxford, 409 pp., £45, January 1991, 0 19 824453 3
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Philosophical Papers 
by F.P. Ramsey, edited by D.H. Mellor.
Cambridge, 257 pp., £30, August 1990, 0 521 37480 4
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The Philosophy of F.P. Ramsey 
by Nils-Eric Sahlin.
Cambridge, 256 pp., £27.50, November 1990, 0 521 38543 1
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... Papers. This presented a Freudian analysis of the personal papers published in those volumes. Nicholas Griffin’s Russell’s Idealist Apprenticeship has a similar genesis, although in terms of philosophical sophistication and scholarly meticulousness it is a much weightier proposition. Griffin is a philosophy ...

Greatest Happiness

Brian Barry, 19 January 1984

The Collected Papers of Bertrand Russell. Vol. I: Cambridge Essays 1888-1899 
edited by Kenneth Blackwell, Andrew Brink, Nicholas Griffin, Richard Rempel and John Slater.
Allen and Unwin, 554 pp., £48, November 1983, 0 04 920067 4
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... There shall be a day when a shorthand citation like “McMaster 8:279” will be sufficient affidavit for the scholar of the authenticity and location of any quotation of Russell’s written word.’ With this ringing prophecy, William Ready, the General Editor of the McMaster University Library Press and the man who brought the Russell archives to McMaster in 1968, introduced a prospectus of The Collected Essays of Bertrand Russell in Russell, the journal of the Bertrand Russell Archives ...

Death in Belgravia

Rosemary Hill, 5 February 2015

A Different Class of Murder: The Story of Lord Lucan 
by Laura Thompson.
Head of Zeus, 422 pp., £20, November 2014, 978 1 78185 536 2
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... arrived in Washington in 1940, returning to London in 1945. That episode, his elder sister Jane Griffin told Thompson, was ‘when it all started’. Griffin, one of the members of the family who sympathised with her parents’ politics, has long made her home in New York. Her account of her childhood and of Lucan’s ...

Love thy neighbourhood

Terry Eagleton, 16 November 1995

The Curious Enlightenment of Professor Caritat 
by Steven Lukes.
Verso, 261 pp., £14.95, November 1995, 1 85984 948 2
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... of tall travellers’ tales from Swift and Voltaire to Lewis Carroll and Samuel Butler. Professor Nicholas Caritat, unworldly scholar of the Enlightenment, is forced out of Militaria, his savagely autocratic homeland, and sent off by an improbable plot device in pursuit of the best of all possible societies. His first port of call is Utilitaria, a lethally ...

A Common Playhouse

Charles Nicholl: The Globe Theatre, 8 January 2015

Shakespeare and the Countess: The Battle That Gave Birth to the Globe 
by Chris Laoutaris.
Fig Tree, 528 pp., £20, April 2015, 978 1 905490 96 7
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... this was formerly the site of the Bell Inn. In the 1590s its landlady was a Mistress Greffine or Griffin, and among its frequent guests was a Stratford businessman called Richard Quiney. From here, on 25 October 1598, Quiney wrote a short letter addressed on the verso ‘To my Loveinge good ffrend & contreymann Mr Wm Shackespere’ – the only item of ...

How far shall I take this character?

Richard Poirier: The Corruption of Literary Biography, 2 November 2000

Bellow: A Biography 
by James Atlas.
Faber, 686 pp., £25, November 2000, 0 571 14356 3
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... not only in a letter to Bellow’s editor but, afterwards, in his encomium to the novel in the Griffin, a readers’ subscription newsletter. Despite this, Bellow insisted on believing that Trilling (as he complained to William Phillips) had been conspiring against him and the book, and was responsible even for arranging the negative review of Augie March ...

Bonfire in Merrie England

Richard Wilson: Shakespeare’s Burning, 4 May 2017

... chimney, funneling the flames’. ‘Great crowds gathered to see the spectacle,’ according to Nicholas Fogg in his history of Stratford: ‘At four o’clock in the afternoon the roof fell in, and by the following morning the building was a blackened shell.’Afterwards a telegram arrived from George Bernard Shaw: ‘You must be ...

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