|—||Mad World by Paula Byrne|
|—||Mad World by Paula Byrne|
Beware of the Anglo-Catholics - they’re all sodomites with unpleasant accents.
The Lygons were Anglo-Catholics starting from the 6th earl Beauchamp, Jane Mulvagh informs us in Madresfield. And there was a homosexual in each generation starting from that time too.
|—||Paula Byrne’s Mad World|
Tamara Abelson (later Talbot Rice), a White Russian exile, who knew EW at Oxford where she was one of the rare undergraduettes.
[via Paula Byrne’s Mad World]
|—||Henry Yorke to Evelyn Waugh, after reading Brideshead Revisited - about not having a homosexual love in Oxford himself.|
Paula Byrne’s Mad World
Yes, there are a lot more Byrne quotes coming - I did warn you when I started reading. :-)
Gay For Today celebrates the incredible variety, contribution and existence of gay men throughout our culture and recent history.
Lady Sibell Lygon
And she definitely doesn’t mean Elmley :-)
[via Paula Byrne’s Mad World]
|—||Ever wondered what was the passage in Alec Waugh’s The Loom of Youth? Well, here it is before you. Nothing more than that. Nothing to shock anyone now. Blink and you miss it.|
“It’s been a day of nightmare - crowds, critics, the Clarences, a luncheon party at Margot’s, ending up with half an hour’s well-reasoned abuse of my pictures in a pansy bar. … I think Celia knows about us.”
“Well, she had to know some time.”
“Everyone seems to know. My pansy friend had not been in London twenty-four hours before he’d heard.”
There is no doubt that Charles means what he says:
mid-15c., from M.Fr. pensée “a pansy,” lit. “thought, remembrance,” from fem. pp. of penser “to think,” from L. pensare “consider,” frequentative of pendere “to weigh” (see pensive). So called because it was regarded as a symbol of thought or remembrance. Meaning “effeminate homosexual man” is first recorded 1929.
The tarts use the word “fairies” to describe Charles and Sebastian:
While he was away two girls stopped near our table and looked at us curiously. “Come on,” said one to the other, “we’re wasting our time. They’re only fairies.”
This word in this meaning is even older:
fairy c.1300, fairie, “enchantment, magic,” from O.Fr. faerie “land of fairies, meeting of fairies, enchantment, magic,” from fae “fay,” from L. fata (pl.) “the Fates,” from PIE *bha- “to speak” (see fame). As “a supernatural creature” from late 14c. [contra Tolkien; cf. “This maketh that ther been no fairyes” in “Wife of Bath’s Tale”], perhaps via intermediate forms such as fairie knight “supernatural or legendary knight” (early 14c.). The diminutive winged beings so-called in children’s stories seem to date from early 17c.Yet I suspect that this flower-and-butterfly minuteness was also a product of “rationalization,” which transformed the glamour of Elfland into mere finesse, and invisibility into a fragility that could hide in a cowslip or shrink behind a blade of grass. It seems to become fashionable soon after the great voyages had begun to make the world seem too narrow to hold both men and elves; when the magic land of Hy Breasail in the West had become the mere Brazils, the land of red-dye-wood. [J.R.R. Tolkien,” On Fairy-Stories,” 1947]The slang meaning “effeminate male homosexual” is first recorded 1895. Fairy ring is from 1590s. Fossil sea urchins found on the English downlands were called fairy loaves.
As for “queer fish”, the term used both by Anthony Blanche to describe his tastes (“there were some rather queer fish, my dear, in and out of my little apartment. Who knows better than you my taste for queer fish?”) and by the Dutch Superia, as Cordelia retells his words (“‘We see some queer fish’” - Cordelia lapsed again into mimicry; ” ‘he was a queer fish, but he was very earnest.’”), the Online Ethimology Dictionary has no such expression, but the term queer itself was used in the meaning “gay” at that time:
queer c.1500, “strange, peculiar, eccentric,” from Scottish, perhaps from Low Ger. (Brunswick dialect) queer “oblique, off-center,” related to Ger. quer “oblique, perverse, odd,” from O.H.G. twerh “oblique,” from PIE base *twerk- “to turn, twist, wind” (related to thwart). The verb “to spoil, ruin” is first recorded 1812. Sense of “homosexual” first recorded 1922; the noun in this sense is 1935, from the adj.
The word thwart plays its part in the novel, too.
“You and Julia …”she said. And then, as we moved on towards the house, “When you met me last night did you think, ‘Poor Cordelia, such an engaging child, grown up a plain and pious spinster, full of good works’? Did you think ‘thwarted’?”
It was no time for prevarication. “Yes,” I said, “I did; I don’t now, so much.”
“It’s funny,” she said, “that’s exactly the word I thought of for you and Julia. When we were up in the nursery with Nanny. Thwarted passion,’ I thought.”
[Gay Community News, July 1982]
Brideshead Revisited, Evelyn Waugh’s epic novel of life, death and spiritual renewal among the English Catholic gentry, is now widely described as Waugh’s greatest work, and has certainly been the most popular of his many novels. The magnificent television re-creation of Brideshead now dominating our Tuesday evenings has given it renewed popularity. Brideshead Revisited is now so widely acclaimed that it is hard to believe that it was not always so. Yet the fact is that both book and author were heavily criticised at the time of its first publication in 1945. How was it that such an enduring favourite should have met with such a hostile reception?
…Others, however, sought a departure from the ubiquitous classicism. Suits in electric blue, almond green or old rose were much admired, but few dared to wear them for fear of being kicked out of public places. Certain accessories became homosexual signs of recognition, in particular suede shoes and camel’s hair coats. Some dared to wear their hair long.
However, “rеаl” homosexuals understood very quickly upon their departure from the university that they did not have any place yet in England. In their quest for new pleasures and freedom, they sought a place that would welcome them. Hints and echoes reported by friends returning from holidays, or something read in the scandal sheets, gave them reason to think that happiness lay in Germany. From this point until 1933, the history of English homosexuality would follow the German model.
A history of homosexuality in Europe: Berlin, London, Paris, 1919-1939, volume I & II
by Florence Tamagne