The Great Grimaldi….

This is rather lovely! I was (once again) side tracked whilst doing trying to do some research by the curious story of Joseph Grimaldi (18 December 1778 – 31 May 1837). He’s commemorated in a little park just off the Pentonville road  where he is buried. Rather sweetly it features …

Naughty Lord Palmerston…….

Despite his ill-fitting false teeth and appalling bad breath, Britain’s prime minister was seemingly irresistible to women during the Crimean War. “Lord Cupid” as he was known in Parliament, fathered seven illegitimate children and once tried to bonk one of Queen Victoria`s ladies-in-waiting while he was visiting Windsor Castle. (He …

The closet Classicist…..

  I thought that I would share this interesting nugget about Karl Marx. According to E.M Butler on page 144 of his The Tyranny of Greece over Germany (1935)…….. Our favourite anti-capitalist was a bit of a closet classicist. “Living in Trier, under the shadow of the Porta Nigra, Marx …

Matching meals and a folly…

  Gerald Hugh Tyrwhitt-Wilson, the 14th Baron Berners, was a gifted composer , novelist, painter and devisor of practical jokes.. When he was a young boy, he learned that birds learn to fly when they are pushed from the nest. So he attempted to “teach” his mother’s dog to fly. …

To be sent to Coventry……

  To be Sent To Coventry is to become a social outcast and be ignored by everybody. But why poor old Coventry?   During the English Civil War in the mid-1600s Coventry was a strong Parliamentarian town, and Royalist soldiers, captured during the early battles in the Midlands, would be …

Abolition and string trousers…

Today is the anniversary of the death of John Conrad (1921-1987) John Conrad, the fourth Earl Russell was the son of the great philosopher Bertrand Russell. Sadly it seems that the admirable qualities of the father were  not passed on to the son. During his infrequent visits to the House of …