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Admirable Urquhart

Denton Fox, 20 September 1984

Sir Thomas Urquhart: The Jewel 
edited by R.D.S. Jack and R.J. Lyall.
Scottish Academic Press, 252 pp., £8.75, April 1984, 0 7073 0327 3
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... Sir Thomas Urquhart, who is known today, if at all, as the 17th-century translator of part of Rabelais, must have been a most peculiar man. At a guess, he may have had to a preternatural degree that quality of mind, not unknown among modern scholars, that causes a man to believe that whatever he thinks, says or does is infallibly true and right, and that whatever he observes in the world is true and right only insofar as it coincides with what is already in his mind ...

Scotch Urchins

Denton Fox, 22 May 1986

Alexander Montgomerie 
by R.D.S. Jack.
Scottish Academic Press, 140 pp., £4.50, June 1985, 0 7073 0367 2
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Letters of King James VI and I 
edited by G.P.V. Akrigg.
California, 546 pp., £32.75, November 1984, 0 520 04707 9
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The Concise Scots Dictionary 
by Mairi Robinson.
Aberdeen University Press, 819 pp., £17.50, August 1985, 0 08 028491 4
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... On the cover of Jack’s paperback there is a portrait of Alexander Montgomerie, a handsome young man, finely dressed, but his eyes and the set of his mouth suggest great inner depths, perhaps profound sorrows. Unfortunately, when one opens the book, one finds the statement: ‘As no likeness of Montgomerie has yet been discovered, the artist’s impression on the cover is based on contemporary portraits ...

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