Alex Massie

Telegramese Charm

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All gone, now of course. Bryan Appleyard has more:

 I was once persuaded, against my better judgment, to write to Samuel Beckett in Paris - I knew him slightly - asking him about his hopes and resolutions for the new year. The telegram arrived - 'Hopes colon zero stop resolutions colon zero stop.' Christopher Ricks subsequently used this in his superb book Beckett's Dying Words as an example of Great Sam's mastery of punctuation.

Written byAlex Massie

Alex Massie is Scotland Editor of The Spectator. He also writes a column for The Times and is a regular contributor to the Scottish Daily Mail, The Scotsman and other publications.

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