Thursday, March 11, 2010

Continuing Cool

Remember this linguist comment on cool?

Well, we continue:


Sir, – David F. Cheshire asks what T. E. Lawrence means when he speaks of Emir Zeid as “too cool” (Letters, March 5). He has only to turn a few pages in his copy of Seven Pillars of Wisdom. “Zeid was a shy, white, beardless lad of perhaps nineteen, calm and flippant, no zealot for the revolt. Indeed, his mother was Turkish; and he had been brought up in the harem, so that he could hardly feel great sympathy with an Arab revival.” Nothing “morally distasteful” about him, or amoral or heartless, in Andre Mayer’s previous glossing of “cool” (Letters, February 26), although it is true Zeid later squandered £24,000 of gold, to Lawrence’s despair. Lawrence liked him and thought he would do things once he had “found himself”.

35 The Albemarle, Marine Parade, Brighton.

Twenty-four thousand pounds sterling?

In 1917, that was a helluva lot of money.

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