Saturday, July 05, 2008

Sordid propensities

At the Telegraph, Jeremy Lewis has a delightful piece on Humphrey Carpenter's history of the publishing firm John Murray:
The revival of the firm in the last century was thanks to the bow-tied, bustling "Jock" Murray, who persuaded his cautious seniors to take on the best-selling Story of San Michele, put up his own money (100 shares in Bovril) to secure the rights to publish Betjeman's Continual Dew, nudged Freya Stark into print, spotted the potential in Parkinson's Law, and modestly declared that his "main claim to fame is that I am the only publisher who has typeset in the nude".

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