The Corner

For Nrodt Readers, Chesterton Lovers, and Euroskeptics

The current (7/14) issue of NRODT has my every-other-issue “Straggler”

column in it, on the topic of my not being able to recognize instrumental

music. I got the following e-mail from NRODT reader Bill Andersen on this:

“Mr. Derbyshire: Chesterton agrees with you about the English genius for

words, words, words. In an uncollected piece written for the British

Foreign Service, he begins: ‘The problem of presenting the English culture

to that general European culture, of which it must always be a part, is made

more problematical by one practical fact; which is partly an accident. It

is the coincidence that the very best English things have to be translated.

… From the standpoint of anyone who can see it from the inside, but see it

sanely, the best things in England are poetry and humour; and it so happens

that they are both locked up in a language.’ (GKC, ’Explaining the


John Derbyshire — Mr. Derbyshire is a former contributing editor of National Review.

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