Books 2010

Books 2009

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Monday, 21 January 2008


Each country has its own share of civil servants of legend but none of them can beat the writting creative abilities of the civil servants of the European Union institutions. Even your own mother tongue sounds like a foreign langage and needs to be simplified/rewritten/translated.
You should consider this specific issue next time you write an article about translation -seriously, no kidding - and if you want to try the experience, here you are :
(Scroll down and click on the Legislation documents 018 019 020...) Enjoy!

Rob - thank you, a really interesting article. I so agree with his point about it not being a closed world, just about toffs; you hear the same criticism about Austen, and it's absurd! Lindsay

Interesting account of the Dance in today's Guardian from the unlikely pen of Tariq Ali:,,2247086,00.html

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  • Nothing is of greater consolation to the author of a novel than the disovery of readings he had not conceived but which are then prompted by his readers. (Umberto Eco, Reflections on The Name of the Rose)
  • ... relatively few persons in London ... can afford the luxury of one or more servants. No fewer than 3,700,000 have no servants at all, and of the half million that have servants 227,000 have only one. (The Times, 6 June 1895)
  • Standing among savage scenery, the hotel offers stupendous revelations. There is a French widow in every bedroom, affording delightful prospects. (Tyrolean inn brochure, according to Gerard Hoffnung)
  • (A doctor is at an elderly relative's deathbed) "The old sawbones, eh?" he bellowed ... "Just in the nick, perhaps. Haul the old girl back by the short hairs, if you ask me. Devilish smart at his work ... Always take a fence with more confidence when I know he's out with us."
  • Too often, when a man of Monty Godkin's mental powers is plunged in thought, nothing happens at all. The machinery just whirs for a while, and that is the end of it. (P G Wodehouse, Heavy Weather)
  • ...the breed that take their pleasures as Saint Laurence took his grid (Kipling, The Five nations)

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