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Knights of the King and Keys

Ian Aitken, 7 March 1991

A Dubious Codicil: An Autobiography by 
by Michael Wharton.
Chatto, 261 pp., £15.99, December 1990, 0 7011 3064 4
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The House the Berrys built 
by Duff Hart-Davis.
Hodder, 299 pp., £16.95, April 1990, 3 405 92526 6
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Lords of Fleet Street: The Harmsworth Dynasty 
by Richard Bourne.
Unwin Hyman, 258 pp., £16.95, October 1990, 0 04 440450 6
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... determination to get drunk. In this aim they were all too successful, so that a visit to the King (it was always singular in conversation, even if the sign over the door said otherwise) and Keys was liable to be hazardous for a relatively sober Expressman. Fights were frequent, bawling arguments were perpetual, and many of the participants were senior ...

Peter Campbell

Mary-Kay Wilmers: On Peter Campbell, 17 November 2011

... The fox on the cover of this issue is walking past Peter Campbell’s house in South London, the house (he wrote about it in the LRB in September) where he and his wife had lived since 1963. Peter died – in that house – on 25 October and the picture on the cover is the last one he painted ...

Diary

Vesna Goldsworthy: In Montenegro, 17 February 2000

... she was ethnically different from the Serbs, although, having grown up as a subject of the last king of Montenegro, she took great pride in her identity and the singular traditions of Montenegrin statehood. In common with the city-state of Dubrovnik, which disappeared in the Napoleonic invasion of the Eastern Adriatic, Montenegro continued to enjoy de facto ...
... fanfare, like an elephant cry. At nightfall in this quarry a few kilometres outside Avignon, Peter Brook’s staging of Jean-Claude Carrière’s adaptation of The Mahabharata begins. Wisdom-book and story-repository, fifteen times the size of the Bible, The Mahabharata was written in Sanskrit, but the words you hear are French, spoken with a piquant ...

King Cling

Julian Bell: Kings and Collectors, 5 April 2018

Charles I: King and Collector 
Royal Academy, London, until 15 April 2018Show More
Charles II: Art and Power 
Queen’s Gallery/London, until 13 May 2018Show More
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... Perched​ on one platform, King Charles I; perched on another, the Dutch painter Daniel Mytens; lowered in between them, a canvas some two feet taller than the king, who was reportedly of small stature. If, as an inscription on the finished portrait insists, the likeness was painted ad vivum, then this might have been the way to do it ...

Peter opened Paul the door

Leofranc Holford-Strevens: The Case for Case, 9 July 2009

The Oxford Handbook of Case 
edited by Andrej Malchukov and Andrew Spencer.
Oxford, 928 pp., £85, November 2008, 978 0 19 920647 6
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... contribute the double genitives hers and theirs, and shares with Danish the phrasal genitive the king of Spain’s daughter. The nature and the manifestations of case are the subject of the new Oxford Handbook; anyone who wishes to understand the phenomenon of case from any point of view will find something of interest in its 57 chapters (not counting the ...

At the National Gallery

Peter Campbell: Paintings from the Berlin Nationalgalerie, 22 March 2001

Spirit of an Age: Paintings from the Berlin Nationalgalerie 
National Gallery, 192 pp., £19.95, March 2001, 1 85709 960 5Show More
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... Like the Tate, it became a gallery of modern, not just native modern, art. Unlike the Tate, as Peter-Klaus Schuster’s essay in the catalogue makes clear, the Nationalgalerie was carried forward, buffeted, and thrown back, by political forces. Its greatest directors were bold in their aims and acquisitions, and suffered for it. In 1896 Hugo von ...

Short Cuts

Christopher Tayler: King Charles the Martyr, 21 February 2019

... fond of bogus erudition – the Brexit white paper was, he said, ‘the greatest vassalage since King John paid homage to Philip II at Le Goulet in 1200’ – and he must have enjoyed expressing his hope that it would ‘not be necessary for Her Majesty’s stay at Sandringham to be interrupted by her in person having to prorogue Parliament’. Speaking the ...

Caliban Rex

Peter Spagnuolo, 4 January 2018

... good riddance! The white flame tacks over the edge, my erstwhile masters leave me here alone, king of all this. It’s her loss, I pushed my body on her, I kissed-up hers – so no brood of hairy babes in treetops toss down coconuts for Da’, pile on us laughing, or howl while chasing down a pig. I’m the boss of no one now. Let her sail off to ...

Flattery

Peter Burke, 16 September 1982

Le Roi-Machine: Spectacle et Politique au Temps de Louis XIV 
by Jean-Marie Apostolidès.
Les Editions de Minuit, 164 pp., £4.50
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Le Portrait du Roi 
by Louis Marin.
Les Editions de Minuit, 300 pp., £5.60
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... right hand know what the left hand was publishing? What is more, both books are concerned with the King’s public image, rather than his policies or his private life. One book deals with court festivals, the other with the portrayal of the King in texts and medals. However, if the authors share a general concern with the ...

Superior Persons

E.S. Turner, 6 February 1986

Travels with a Superior Person 
by Lord Curzon, edited by Peter King.
Sidgwick, 191 pp., £12.95, October 1985, 0 283 99294 8
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The Ladies of Castlebrae 
by A. Whigham Price.
Alan Sutton, 242 pp., £10.95, October 1985, 0 86299 228 1
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Lizzie: A Victorian Lady’s Amazon Adventure 
by Tony Morrison, Anne Brown and Ann Rose.
BBC, 160 pp., £9.95, November 1985, 0 563 20424 9
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Miss Fane in India 
by [author], edited by John Pemble.
Alan Sutton, 246 pp., £10.95, October 1985, 0 86299 240 0
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Explorers Extraordinary 
by John Keay.
Murray/BBC Publications, 195 pp., £10.95, November 1985, 0 7195 4249 9
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A Visit to Germany, Italy and Malta 1840-41 
by Hans Christian Andersen, translated by Grace Thornton.
Peter Owen, 182 pp., £12.50, October 1985, 0 7206 0636 5
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The Irish Sketch-Book 1842 
by William Makepeace Thackeray.
Blackstaff, 368 pp., £9.95, December 1985, 0 85640 340 7
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Mr Rowlandson’s England 
by Robert Southey, edited by John Steel.
Antique Collectors’ Club, 202 pp., £14.95, November 1985, 0 907462 77 4
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... We travellers are in very hard circumstances,’ said Lady Mary Wortley Montagu. ‘If we tell anything new we are laughed at as fabulous.’ This mistrust of the footloose is endorsed by the trenchant definition of ‘traveller’s tale’ in Chambers’ Dictionary: ‘an astounding lie about what one professes to have seen abroad’. To be sure, this batch of 19th-century travellers’ tales features some astounding liars, but there are also some reasonably honest witnesses ...

The Strange Case of Peter Vansittart

Martin Seymour-Smith, 6 March 1986

Aspects of Feeling 
by Peter Vansittart.
Peter Owen, 251 pp., £10.95, January 1986, 0 7206 0637 3
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... Peter Vansittart, novelist, historian and writer for children, has been singled out for praise by critics as diverse as Philip Toynbee, Francis King, Angus Wilson and Andrew Sinclair. All feel that he lacks the large audience he deserves. Yet the curious reader, anxious to gain more information about this somewhat enigmatic writer, of undoubted power (and above all vision), may easily find himself defeated ...

At Tate Britain

Peter Campbell: Van Dyck’s Portraits, 12 March 2009

... with a very ordinary face, regal presence, and to make his plain queen a beauty, was a gift the king knew the value of. In the exhibition the portrait of Charles by Daniel Mytens shows why Van Dyck ousted his competitors. Mytens, as the catalogue puts it, ‘conferred on his sitters considerable dignity in a formal, Netherlandish manner’. Van Dyck takes ...

Great Kings, Strong Kings, Kings of the Four Quarters

Peter Green: The Achaemenids, 7 May 2015

Ancient Persia: A Concise History of the Achaemenid Empire, 550-330 BCE 
by Matt Waters.
Cambridge, 252 pp., £19.99, January 2014, 978 0 521 25369 7
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... Persia was the most powerful nation in Eurasia. Cyrus had been justified in calling himself ‘King of the World, Great King, Strong King, King of Babylon, King of Sumer and Akkad, ...

Medieval Dreams

Peter Burke, 4 June 1981

Time, Work and Culture in the Middle Ages 
by Jacques Le Goff, translated by Arthur Goldhammer.
Chicago, 384 pp., £13.50, January 1981, 0 226 47080 6
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... One night in 1130, King Henry I had a nightmare. He dreamed that he was being attacked, first by a crowd of peasants, then by a group of knights, and finally by a number of clerics. For many historians, this detail, recorded by the chronicler John of Worcester, would be no more than a fascinating piece of useless information ...

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