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seaJane

David Jones biography

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http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b08lglt1
Thomas Dilworth's biography of David Jones is Radio 4's Book of the Week.

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SJ

 

The reviews of the book in the Times and the Sunday Times a couple of weeks ago showed (as if we ever doubted it) how subjective art is. One said how poor his painting was but that he was a brilliant poet. The other said that his poetry was wildly overrated by modernists who should have known better, but that his water colours were exquisite!!

 

At least they both agreed that he was a man mentally scarred for life by his experiences on the Western Front

 

David

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48 minutes ago, David Ridgus said:

 

 

At least they both agreed that he was a man mentally scarred for life by his experiences on the Western Front

 

 

 

Numbed by Haig, I wonder how many more "Rosie's" there were, or was it a predisposition on the part of the individual?

 

Ken

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I've just taken delivery of the book. Only just started it but seems to be an excellent and exhaustive account, apparently the result of a lifetimes research. Extremely well illustrated as well. However if you're only interested in Jones wartime experiences you'd be better off with the same authors 'David Jones at War' as the same period is only glossed over here in deference to the previous work.

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I'm interested in both aspects so that suits me fine DJC, thanks. :)

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I'm really looking forward to reading this: recently dug out an ancient review of Jones' last book The Sleeping Lord by Seamus Heaney dating back to 1974; quite interesting... 

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From amongst my souveniers I have been looking at the menu/guest list card of an event that I was invited to attend almost half a century ago.

 

Held at the Northumberland Grand on 14th October 1967, it was the 53rd Annual Reunion Luncheon of 15/RWF (1st London Welch.)

 

I have convinced myself that Jones, D. was in attendance and that he was taken ill during the lunch and was helped from the dining room without too much fuss: somebody was, and I think it was him. At that time I would not have known who he was, mea maxima culpa.

 

Leek Soup on the menu, of course. Brigadier ap Rhys Pryce GOH.

 

Toasts to Queen, Queen Mum, PoW and Absent Friends.

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Touching history there, Mr D. Touching history.

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Anything for a free lunch.

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57 minutes ago, Stoppage Drill said:

Anything for a free lunch.

The book doesn't mention that particular date, but by then he had become increasingly reluctant to go out at all, having had a panic attack at the Royal Academy earlier in the year. He was also on a number of medications which he tended not to take, so if he was there that might account for his collapse.

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2 hours ago, Stoppage Drill said:

Anything for a free lunch.

 

As any fule kno, there is no such thing as a free lunch.

Actually, as an afterthought, is there any chance you could share a scan or photo of the menu? It really would be an interesting piece of history to see.

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ID: 12   Posted (edited)

I've had a major IT glitch for a while since being upgraded to W10, and can't connect to my printer. I'll see what I can do.

 

Looking again, I see the toast was not 'Absent Friends', but 'Fallen Comrades' which sounds more poignant.

Edited by Stoppage Drill

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This any use ?

1492548724269.jpg

Page 2

1492548832571.jpg

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1492548915475.jpg

1492548964628.jpg

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Wonderful!

 

Bernard

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Sure is. Thanks for sharing - sorry I missed it.

 

Presumably Maj-Gen Fox-Pitt is (grandfather?) of William of that Ilk?

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Dunno, it's one of those names that keeps cropping up.

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It looks rather odd, and could I say transitional: the association has its HQ at the central London recruiting depot, Great Scotland Yard, but the addresses have modern-style postcodes.

 

Any reason for the date - 14th October? Did it have a regimental/battalion significance?

 

A final observation - that luncheon is as far away from now as it was from the GW. Almost exactly mid-way between. Sobering - the chaps there must have been in their late 60's at least, 70's probably the majority. I can't say why, but it feels like you were there at a very fortunate time. I recall attending Hallowe'en at our RHQ when our last Messines veteran attended. Even now I feel oddly privileged to have been in the room.

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ID: 19   Posted (edited)

My recollections of the event are pretty dim, and I am sorry to say that I did not know enough at the time to fully appreciate the significance of it.

 

The Battalion formed on 20 October 1914, the Extensive Library informs, so I suppose that the Association picked the nearest convenient Saturday to the anniversary for their reunions.

 

I wish that I could go back in time with what I know now, and meet those men again.

 

Captain Wyn Griffith, two places below Fox-Pitt in the list of Vice Presidents, was the author of Up to Mametz.

Edited by Stoppage Drill

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2 hours ago, Stoppage Drill said:

Captain Wyn Griffith, two places below Fox-Pitt in the list of Vice Presidents, was the author of Up to Mametz.

 

Who by the date of this dinner had also developed and implemented PAYE, been a founder member of the Round Britain Quiz, written Plain Words with Sir Ernest Gowers and was vice Chairman of the Arts Council! Talk about a Renaissance Man.

 

Along with Nothing of Importance, Up to Mametz is my favourite Great War memoir. 

 

'Somewhere behind our hill a big gun fired, another followed it, and suddenly the battery below blasted a stuttering sentence of noises. The Devil had taken his seat at the keyboard to play the opening bars of his morning hymn; another day beginning, the last day for so many, a fine sunny day to devote to killing and bruising. Was it my last day? With a wise obstinacy, the mind refused to dwell on such a thought, and the signalman in my brain shunted such futile traffic into some siding, giving the right of way to the greater utility of a desire for a cup of tea.'

 

David

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I'm waiting for 'David Jones in the Great War' to drop on the mat...

 

Bernard

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8 hours ago, David Ridgus said:

 

Who by the date of this dinner had also developed and implemented PAYE, been a founder member of the Round Britain Quiz, written Plain Words with Sir Ernest Gowers and was vice Chairman of the Arts Council! Talk about a Renaissance Man.

 

 

David

 

What a generation that was.

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On 28/04/2017 at 23:34, Bernard_Lewis said:

I'm waiting for 'David Jones in the Great War' to drop on the mat...

 

Bernard

Hope you're not still waiting?

 

sJ

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No, it's here and in the 'waiting' pile!

 

Tempted by the new bio which covers his entire life plus the book that helps you understand 'In Parentheses'! ('Reading David Jones'?)

 

But let's see how this one reads...

 

Bernard

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