There must have been at least four million acres of woodland in England at the beginning of the sixteenth century, and all hardwoods at that. The forests of Epping and Arden, Sherwood, Dean and Wychwood … were a living reality. Smaller woods abounded all over England. Few boys lived beyond easy walking distance of thick woodland, or of wild and spacious heaths, where they could work off freely the animal energies that in the twentieth century lead too many of them in the foul and joyless towns into the juvenile courts.
There was plenty of scope for poachers of fish, and game, and plenty of fresh air and space for everybody, and silence if they wanted it. No industrial smoke, nothing faster on the roads than a horse, no incessant noises from the sky: only three million people all told, spread thinly about the country. The largest provincial town (Norwich) could be described as ‘either a City in an Orchard, or an Orchard in a City, so equally are Houses and Trees blended in it’.
The Making of the English Landscape
WG Hoskins, 1955
“The table was a large one, but the three were all crowded together at one corner of it:
“No room! No room!” they cried out when they saw Alice coming.
“There’s plenty of room!” said Alice indignantly, and she sat down in a large arm-chair at one end of the table.
“Have some wine,” the March Hare said in an encouraging tone.
Alice looked all round the table, but there was nothing on it but tea, “I don’t see any wine,” she remarked .
“There isn’t any,” said the March Hare.
Alice’Adventures in Wonderland Lewis Carroll
Count Gottfried von Bismarck, who died on July 2, 2007, aged 44, was a louche German aristocrat with a multi-faceted history as a pleasure-seeking heroin addict, hell-raising alcoholic, flamboyant waster and a reckless and extravagant host of homosexual orgies. Continue reading…
Yves Klein directs paint-smeared women in “Anthropometrics of the Blue Epoch,” in Paris, in 1960. Photograph by Charles Wilp.
Is at ease in any situation and puts others at their ease
Is always on time
Dresses to suit the occasion
Makes love on his elbows
Occasionally gets drunk but never disorderly
Is mindful of others’ financial circumstances
A gentleman does not…
Wear a pre-tied bow-tie
Buy fuschia trousers
Put products in his hair
Write with a ballpoint
Own a dog
Wilfrid Brambell cutting a gay rug in London in 1971.
Le Guin’s short story is based on a supposition by the philosopher William James, which sees “millions kept permanently happy on the one simple condition that a certain lost soul on the far-off edge of things should lead a life of lonely torture.” Omelas is heaven, except for the locked room in which a child lives in dirt and despair, an ideal state’s dark secret.