This summer will mark the 85th anniversary of the start of the Spanish Civil War, a brutal struggle that began with a military uprising against the democratic Second Republic and ended, three years later, in victory for the rebels under General Francisco Franco. The enduring fascination of that conflict, its ability to grip the global imagination, belies its geographical scale and is testament to the power of art.
By Kathleen Riley
I am writing this on Shakespeare’s birthday, 23rd April, and it strikes me how apposite are Beatrice’s words in Much Ado to the birth, on 10th September 1896, of Adele Marie Austerlitz, later Adele Astaire, a personality and a performer of infinite, inextinguishable and irresistible mirth. In London in the 1920s, she was depicted as a misplaced Shakespearean sprite who ‘should be dancing by glow-worm light under entranced trees on a midsummer eve with a rout of elves, after drinking rose-dew.’