Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Today -100: March 25, 1920: Of Spartacists and Misseses


The US chargé in Berlin claims that Spartacists hold half the city. He calls for Americans to leave.

The British novelist Mrs Humphry Ward (that’s how she gives her name on the covers of her books) dies at 68. She was acclaimed for Robert Elsmere (1888), a novel about a clergyman’s crisis of faith and therefore a best-seller for some reason. She was the niece of Matthew Arnold and the aunt of Aldous Huxley, who was not a fan. Nor am I, from the one novel of hers I’ve read. In the Edwardian period, as her novels came to be seen as old-fashioned, she was better known as the most prominent female anti-suffragist (where she signed herself Mary Augusta Ward), although she was a feminist in other ways, strongly advocating higher education for women. John Sutherland’s biography is worth reading. She is survived by her idiot husband and wastrel son.


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