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The Blue Suit

Frederick Seidel, 7 June 2018

... in the wind Like wind chimes, Prettifying my many crimes. Mr Hall at Huntsman was followed by his former pupil, Now at his own firm, Richard Anderson at Richard Anderson. What does a blue suit do? What does a blue suit know? It won’t find friends in Moscow When it’s as electric blue as this one is. It’s a bit too Broadway musical, too Broadway ...

On Kyōsai

Rosina Buckland, 9 June 2022

... he was in fact modest and shy. Around the same time, the British architect Josiah Conder, a former pupil of Kyōsai’s, helped arrange for him a commission of a hundred crow paintings for the European market. Crows appear everywhere in this exhibition, standing in for Kyōsai himself: hopping about and commenting on the social changes of the ...


A.J.P. Taylor: A historian should have more sense, 6 May 1982

... in 1938 and for Poland in 1939. I applauded the Second World War and still do, being rebuked by a former pupil the other day for describing it as ‘a good war’. Afterwards I swung round again: against the war for Korea in 1951 and very much against the Suez aggression in 1956. And where does this all leave me when the issue of peace or war comes up ...

On Spanking

Christopher Hitchens, 20 October 1994

AGuide to the Correction of Young Gentlemen or, The Successful Administration of Physical Discipline to Males, by Females 
by a Lady, with illustrations by a Former Pupil.
Delectus, 140 pp., £19.95, August 1994, 1 897767 05 6
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... want of anything that might be called prurience. Even the illustrations (lovingly etched by ‘A Former Pupil’) are innocuous to a degree; mere putti rendered in a sort of arch Pre-Raphaelite pastiche and consisting of sexless buttocks and downcast eyes. The point of all the exercises, inflictions and routines here described is very simple – to show ...

Pugin’s Law

Mark Swenarton, 4 December 1980

The Work of Sir Gilbert Scott 
by David Cole.
Architectural Press, 244 pp., £25, May 1980, 0 85139 723 9
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Lutyens Country Houses 
by Daniel O’Neill.
Lund Humphries, 167 pp., £8.95, May 1980, 0 85331 428 4
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A Revolution in London Housing: LCC Housing Architects and their Work 1893-1914 
by Susan Beattic.
GLC/Architectural Press, 127 pp., £6.95, July 1980, 0 85139 560 0
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... improvement on much contemporary work, but showed insufficient thought over the problem. Scott’s former pupil. Crossland carried out the work but Scon also designed All Souls’ vicarage nearby. Scott began the Vaughan Library at Harrow School in 1861 ... When he died. Scott was regarded as one of the leading architects of the time. When Sir Edwin ...

Forever on the Wrong Side

R.W. Johnson: Jean Suret-Canale, 27 September 2012

Suret-Canale: de la Résistance a l’anticolonialisme 
by Pascal Bianchini.
L’Esprit Frappeur, 253 pp., €14, March 2011, 978 2 84405 244 5
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... in French Equatorial Africa where ‘the staff was made up as follows: one administrator, a former pupil of the Ecole coloniale, and three clerks – a former dentist, a former non-commissioned officer of the colonial infantry (who amused himself in the evenings, when drunk, by ...

The Young Man One Hopes For

Jonathan Rée: The Wittgensteins, 21 November 2019

Wittgenstein’s Family Letters: Corresponding with Ludwig 
edited by Brian McGuinness, translated by Peter Winslow.
Bloomsbury, 300 pp., £20, November 2018, 978 1 4742 9813 1
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... by my friend Mr Ludwig Wittgenstein’, and in a book on mathematics he paid tribute to his ‘former pupil’ and wondered ‘whether he is alive or dead’. It wasn’t until 1919 that he received a postcard from Wittgenstein, now a prisoner of war in Italy, saying that he had ‘done lots of logical work’ and, in his next message, that he had ...


A.J.P. Taylor: No doubt I am old-fashioned, 1 April 1982

... basis: either you are for the Ins or for the Outs, there is or should be no third choice. My former pupil, William Rogers, has just pronounced on The Politics of Change.* I sought guidance from him and found little except that the two established parties have made a fine mess of things, which I knew already. I am curious about the alliance between ...

Nobody wants it

Jose Harris, 5 December 1991

Letters to Eva, 1969-1983 
by A.J.P. Taylor, edited by Eva Haraszti Taylor.
Century, 486 pp., £20, June 1991, 0 7126 4634 5
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... were ‘subjects that do not interest me at all’. A major work of cultural history by a former pupil was written off as little more than a ‘clever ... ragbag ... I like history to be chronological. Taylor’s strictures on contemporary historical writing extended also to much of his own work. The Letters to Eva, written between his ...

Existence Unperceived

W.D. Hart, 15 October 1981

Philosophical Subjects: Essays Presented to P.F. Strawson 
edited by Zak van Straaten.
Oxford, 302 pp., £12.50, November 1980, 9780198246039
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... upon Chapter Two of Strawson’s Individuals’: Evans, who died last year at the age of 34, was a former pupil of Strawson’s. (It is, incidentally, a pity that there is no contribution from Strawson’s own tutor, the excellent H.P. Grice, an Oxford man now at Berkeley in California.) Evans’s theme goes back to Kant. Kant thought that we need no ...

Brown and Friends

David Runciman, 3 January 2008

... him. This cannot be healthy. Even more striking than Brown’s taste for attaching himself to his former intellectual bag-carriers is the fact that each of his three confidants has a very close relation in the upper reaches of British political life. At the time of writing, Alexander’s sister Wendy was still hanging on as leader of the Labour Party in ...

Impressions of Nietzsche

Keith Kyle, 27 July 1989

The Lives of Enoch Powell 
by Patrick Cosgrave.
Bodley Head, 518 pp., £16, April 1989, 0 370 30871 9
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... word “the” and substitute the word “a”.’ This came back to mind on seeing Gough Whitlam, former Prime Minister of Australia and former pupil of Professor Enoch Powell, recollecting on television his perplexity that anyone could have been able to make Herodotus sound boring. But this is the same man, animated ...

Picture in Little

Charles Nicholl: Hilliard’s Trajectory, 19 December 2019

Nicholas Hilliard: Life of an Artist 
by Elizabeth Goldring.
Yale, 337 pp., £40, February 2019, 978 0 300 24142 6
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... Horace Walpole pored over a miniature by Isaac Oliver – Hilliard’s brilliant French-born pupil – and found that ‘the largest magnifying glass only calls out new beauties.’The​ 400th anniversary of Hilliard’s death this year has been marked by the publication of Elizabeth Goldring’s impeccably researched new biography, and by an exhibition ...


J.I.M. Stewart, 15 September 1983

M.R. James: An Informal Portrait 
by Michael Cox.
Oxford, 268 pp., £14.50, June 1983, 0 19 211765 3
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... tutor when he entered Eton as a boy, and at Eton still until he died in the eighth year of his old pupil’s Provostship. Luxmoore was austere but tolerant, and both qualities are evident in his account of a Christmas spent at King’s a few years before Monty’s attaining the headship of the college: I am spending Christmas in this wonderful place with ...

I do like painting

Julian Bell: The life and art of William Coldstream, 2 December 2004

William Coldstream 
by Bruce Laughton.
Yale, 368 pp., £30, July 2004, 0 300 10243 7
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... such as Bacon or Freud and, more particularly, by the higher pitched, punchier art of his pupil Euan Uglow. A few portrait commissions remain on public view in contexts of fusty formality, but for the most part the Coldstreams are for the storeroom. This, Laughton reckons, is an unworthy coda to the former hegemony ...

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