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Rotten Life, Great Obit


Connoisseurs of British obituaries—and there are more of you out there than will admit it—will join me in grieving at the death, and delighting in the send-off, of Anthony Ashley-Cooper, the tenth Earl of Shaftesbury. From the obituary in the Telegraph (which appeared in April but has only just now been brought to my attention):

The 10th Earl of Shaftesbury, whose death aged 66 was confirmed yesterday, demonstrated the dangers of the possession of inherited wealth coupled with a weakness for women and Champagne….

It was said, after his mysterious disappearance from a Cannes nightclub, that the 10th Earl, like Gladstone, had been devoting himself to helping vulnerable young girls working in nightspots on the French Riviera to start new lives. But as the mystery deepened, it seemed that his interest was more than merely philanthropic.

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