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Tom Holland Posts

Review: Squeezing the Orange by Henry Blofeld

There can be a strong strain of self-parody in even the greatest commentators. When Henry Blofeld describes the progress of a pigeon in his inimitably plummy tones, or greets a visiting Ocker to the commentary […]

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Explaining cricket to America

The American series “30 Rock” has been airing in the U.K. for several years now, and most of it carries perfectly well across the pond. But comedy depends on context, and I was surely not […]

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The dinosaur capital of the world

Jesus and the dinosaurs are living happily alongside one another in a town in Canada – but can the peace last, asks Tom Holland. Drumheller is definitely the place to visit if you like dinosaurs. […]

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Dinosaurs aren’t extinct

You wouldn’t know it from Jurassic World, but tyrannosaurs had coats of fuzz and the same molecular structure as a hen. Forget about cloning dinosaurs, writes the historian Tom Holland. They’re still us — they’re […]

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Dinomania: the history of an obsession

They made the Victorians shudder with awe, but before long dinosaurs were loved mostly by cartoonists and children. Then came a series of discoveries that began a dazzling chapter in the history of science and […]

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Auctioning a Diplodocus

It is hard to think of a more remarkable bargain than “Misty”, the diplodocus that went under the hammer this week for £400,000. The chance to own a 17-metre dinosaur does not come along every […]

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Review: Byron: Child of Passion, Fool of Fame by Benita Eisler

Byron’s memoirs were burnt by friends terrified of what they might contain. Ever since, biographers have been trying to make up for the loss. The attractions of the challenge are obvious. Not only was Byron […]

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Review: Augusta Leigh: Byron’s Half-Sister by Michael and Melissa Bakewell

Celebrities, we have it on good authority, are like candles in the wind. As it is the nature of candles to illumine what would otherwise be dark, this means that within every biography of a […]

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In praise of Captain Corelli’s Mandolin

Considering the habitual British distaste for foreigners and learning musical instruments, Captain Corelli’s Mandolin was a brave title for a novel. But Louis de Bernieres clearly knew what he was doing: four years after its […]

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The resurrection of the Caliphate

Read the full article on the Financial Times website [paywall]

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What Scotland and England share

The Tarbat Peninsula, a spit of land sticking out from the northernmost Scottish Highlands, seems an unlikely spot for a revolution. At its tip stands a lighthouse, built by Robert Louis Stevenson’s uncle back in […]

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The Christian roots of secularism

As the first decade of the third Christian millennium draws to an increasingly troubled close, the verdict of historians on its significance can already be anticipated. Two themes will predominate. The first, exemplified by the […]

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