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Bypass Variegated

Rosemary Hill: Osbert Lancaster, 21 January 2016

Osbert Lancaster’s Cartoons, Columns and Curlicues: ‘Pillar to Post’, ‘Homes Sweet Homes’, ‘Drayneflete Revealed’ 
by Osbert Lancaster.
Pimpernel, 304 pp., £40, October 2015, 978 1 910258 37 8
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... Arriving​ at his prep school in the bleak winter of 1918 the ten-year-old Osbert Lancaster was made even more miserable than the average new bug by the fact that St Ronan’s, Worthing was a spectacularly sporty school. The headmaster, Stanley Harris, had captained England at football and was also a distinguished cricketer and rugby player ...

At the Wallace Collection

Peter Campbell: Anthony Powell’s artists, 26 January 2006

... appearances and offers descriptions an illustrator can build on. The paperback covers drawn by Osbert Lancaster for the early Dance volumes, and those done later by Mark Boxer for the whole series when they were reissued by Fontana, are rare examples in modern English fiction of illustrations which add to the understanding of a novel rather than ...

Half-Way up the Hill

Frank Kermode, 7 July 1988

Young Betjeman 
by Bevis Hillier.
Murray, 457 pp., £15.95, July 1988, 0 7195 4531 5
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... frying-pan into the fire: still a despised European. It made things worse that he detested abroad; Osbert Lancaster said that Betjeman abroad had to be surrounded by friends, like a rugby player who has lost his shorts. He also disliked Betjemann, who, though a man of parts, was at times quarrelsome and censorious. Mr Hillier’s book is stuffed with ...

At the V&A

Peter Campbell: Penguin’s 70th birthday, 2 June 2005

... had paperback rights to Anthony Powell’s Dance to the Music of Time, the covers used drawings by Osbert Lancaster. Later, when Powell moved publishers, there were drawings by Marc Boxer. Lancaster’s are less intrusive because they show places as much as people. Boxer’s comic impersonations put his idea of the ...

This Charming Man

Frank Kermode, 24 February 1994

The Collected and Recollected Marc 
Fourth Estate, 51 pp., £25, November 1993, 1 85702 164 9Show More
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... In pocket cartoons he was bright but perhaps never quite the equal of the doyen of the genre, Osbert Lancaster. Among the ‘portraits’ or caricatures, of which we are offered well over a hundred, there are many brilliant successes and few failures. The editor has forsworn annotation, but has instead chosen figures still not in too rapid recession ...

Tony, Ray and the Duchess

Alan Bell, 21 May 1981

A Lonely Business: A Self-Portrait of James Pope-Hennessy 
edited by Peter Quennell.
Weidenfeld, 278 pp., £12.50, April 1981, 0 297 77918 4
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... crystallised by the people than in the travelogue prose. The Freetown Governor and his wife (‘if Osbert Lancaster had been delegated by God to design them, they could not have been more precisely what they sounded like’), or an Etonian in Dominica who had married his black cook (‘a most depraved-looking middle-aged man, straight out of Maugham, with ...

The World of School

John Bayley, 28 September 1989

The Brideshead Generation: Evelyn Waugh and his Friends 
by Humphrey Carpenter.
Weidenfeld, 523 pp., £17.95, September 1989, 0 297 79320 9
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OsbertA Portrait of Osbert Lancaster 
by Richard Boston.
Collins, 256 pp., £17.50, August 1989, 0 00 216324 1
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Ackerley: A Life of J.R. Ackerley 
by Peter Parker.
Constable, 465 pp., £16.95, September 1989, 0 09 469000 6
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... tour de force is also a sober labour of love. This Waugh has affiliations with Richard Boston’s Osbert Lancaster, the portrait of a connoisseur of social oddity who also loved it steadily and whole. Boston is discriminatingly informative about Lancaster’s achievement as artist and cartoonist, and about such ...

Memories of New Zealand

Peter Campbell, 1 December 2011

... environment that would have been recognisable as that of a liberal, left-wing intellectual. Osbert Lancaster could have put the decor into a Hampstead Garden Suburb drawing-room. The bedroom suite, the dining-room furniture and my father’s desk were copied by a local cabinetmaker from a Heal’s catalogue. The red spines of the Left Book Club ...

Ach so, Herr Major

Nicholas Horsfall: Translating Horace, 23 June 2005

Horace: Odes and Epodes 
edited by Niall Rudd.
Harvard, 350 pp., £14.50, June 2004, 0 674 99609 7
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... of the scholar and controversialist, who taught classics at Charterhouse, was once seen by Osbert Lancaster accompanying Lady Asquith down Bond St, and died a Companion of Honour and a trustee of the Reform Club. Page was an admirable Latinist, independent, commonsensical, and sharply aware of a world outside books. Even when wrong, he was ...

The Thought of Ruislip

E.S. Turner: The Metropolitan Line, 2 December 2004

Metro-Land: British Empire Exhibition Number 
by Oliver Green.
Southbank, 144 pp., £16.99, July 2004, 1 904915 00 0
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... of Mon Repos and Erzanmine and sunburst garden gates, the endless lines of ‘Tudor bypass’, as Osbert Lancaster called it, broken only by pinched shops spatchcocked into parades and esplanades. In contrast, the publicity photographs of Metroland showed tree-sheltered homesteads of ineffable distinction, sometimes with thatched roofs, and ponds and ...

Gilded Drainpipes

E.S. Turner: London, 10 June 1999

The London Rich: The Creation of a Great City from 1666 to the Present 
by Peter Thorold.
Viking, 374 pp., £25, June 1999, 0 670 87480 9
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The Rise of the Nouveaux Riches: Style and Status in Victorian and Edwardian Architecture 
by Mordaunt Crook.
Murray, 354 pp., £25, May 1999, 0 7195 6040 3
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... still flourished, a stone’s throw from Buckingham Palace. It was this establishment, now Lancaster House, which so impressed Queen Victoria that she said to the second duchess: ‘I come from my house to your palace.’ The London Rich has much useful information on the nature of leases, the complications of which often throttled the aspirations of ...

Being all right, and being wrong

Barbara Everett, 12 July 1990

Miscellaneous Verdicts: Writings on Writers 1946-1989 
by Anthony Powell.
Heinemann, 501 pp., £20, May 1990, 9780434599288
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Haydn and the Valve Trumpet 
by Craig Raine.
Faber, 498 pp., £20, June 1990, 0 571 15084 5
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... in a Conrad essay the study ‘of human nature at close range’. And in another, speaking of Osbert Lancaster, he names ‘temperament’ as ‘the overriding element in any artist’. For all his evident if reticent romanticism, Powell is absorbed by the literary as a study of human life – a concept that goes straight back to the 18th ...

Hit and Muss

John Campbell, 23 January 1986

David Low 
by Colin Seymour-Ure and Jim Schoff.
Secker, 180 pp., £9.95, October 1985, 9780436447556
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... but his drawing is both fussy and crude. Gerald Scarfe is essentially a caricaturist; Marc and Osbert Lancaster are purveyors of one-line gags. The only comparison is with Vicky; he very nearly reaches Low’s level of political acuity and wit but his drawings are much slighter and his characterisation thinner than Low’s. Rowlandson and Gillray ...

The Undesired Result

Gillian Darley: Betjeman’s bêtes noires, 31 March 2005

Betjeman: The Bonus of Laughter 
by Bevis Hillier.
Murray, 744 pp., £25, October 2004, 0 7195 6495 6
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... Betjeman’s horizons, leading him and Elizabeth Cavendish regularly abroad in a group that Osbert Lancaster (one of Betjeman’s most steadfast friends) christened ‘the Church of England Ramblers Association’. Betjeman’s hate figures could not be counted as enemies, since many of them were oblivious of their importance to him. Some, such as ...

At the Wallace Collection

Peter Campbell: Osbert Lancaster’s Promontory, 25 September 2008

... An exhibition of Osbert Lancaster’s drawings, cartoons, illustrations and set and costume designs, selected by James Knox, will begin at the Wallace Collection on 2 October. Lancaster was a short man with a big head, strikingly large blue eyes, a curled moustache and a dandy’s taste for very good, but emphatic clothes (pink shirts, bow ties ...

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