Ferdinand Mount

The brisk, implacable Sir Maurice Hankey (second from right) stands between Ramsay Macdonald and Franz von Papen at the Reparations Conference in Lausanne in 1932

The cabinet office — and the Gospel according to Sir Humphrey

18 March 2017 9:00 am

The minister’s private secretary wrote to another cabinet minister about the previous day’s cabinet meeting: They cannot agree about what…

Brian Hodgson finds his vocation in Kathmandu

12 December 2015 9:00 am

It started as a ‘shoke’ — the Anglo-Indian slang word for ‘hobby’. Bored and lonely in Kathmandu, the young Assistant…

The first suicide bomber was probably Samson, who died while pulling down the temple of the Philistines

Religion does not poison everything - everything poisons religion

20 September 2014 9:00 am

It slips so easily off the tongue. In fact, it’s a modern mantra. ‘Religion causes all the wars.’ Karen Armstrong…

Piketty’s decaff Marxism would be just as oppressive and intrusive as the old variety

24 May 2014 9:00 am

If a title works once, the chances are it will work again. Half the punch of Marx’s masterwork is in…

Ferdinand Mount's diary: Supermac was guilty!

25 January 2014 9:00 am

You have to hand it to Supermac. Fifty years after the event, he is still running rings round them. The…

Isaac & Isaiah, by David Caute - review

21 September 2013 9:00 am

The scene is the common room of All Souls College, Oxford, in the first week of March 1963. It is…

Mrs Thatcher’s triumph

13 April 2013 9:00 am

12 May 1979

Oh, Calcutta!

23 February 2013 9:00 am

Now a byword for poverty, the former capital of British India makes for a fascinating study, says Ferdinand Mount

A life of sad romance

20 October 2012 9:00 am

‘What porridge had John Keats?’ Browning offers this as the crass sort of question that stupid people ask. But in…

Class is back

25 February 2012 3:00 pm

…and the divisions are more bitterly felt than ever

Spiritual superhero

25 February 2012 10:00 am

When totting up the positives from the British Raj, people often put the railways first, followed by the Indian Civil…

The Letters of Samuel Beckett: Volume II, 1941-56, edited by George Craig, Martha Dow Fehsenfeld, Dan Gunn and Lois More Overbeck

29 October 2011 11:00 am

The die was miscast from the start, more’s the pity. As we reach the halfway point in this massy four-volume…

Elegy for wild Wales

4 June 2011 12:00 am

If you drive West out of Carmarthen on the A40, you pass through a landscape of dimpled hills and lonely chapels and little rivers full of salmon trout.

A time to moan and weep

2 October 2010 12:00 am

Ferdinand Mount recalls the crisis years of the early 1970s, when Britain was pronounced ‘ungovernable’

Raise a glass to Alan Watkins

12 May 2010 12:00 am

Ferdinand Mount mourns the passing of his friend and colleague — and a former Spectator columnist — whose wit, humour and clarity of expression remain unrivalled

Refusing to play the game

31 March 2010 12:00 am

What sort of person would you expect to be bringing out a life of J.D. Salinger two months after his death, bearing in mind that Salinger was more obsessive about his privacy than any other writer in human history and fought the publication of the last biography all the way to the US Supreme Court?

David Cameron should honour his marriage vow

20 January 2010 12:00 am

Labour’s Green Paper on families makes it clear that the party is opposed to promoting marriage. Ferdinand Mount says it’s crucial that the Tories don’t waver, but stick to their promise of a financial incentive

A long journey

14 December 2009 12:00 am

Concerning E. M. Forster, by Frank Kermode


7 October 2009 12:00 am

Ferdinand Mount opens his diary

The Go-Away Bird

12 August 2009 12:00 am

Muriel Spark: The Biography, by Martin Stannard

How different from us?

18 February 2009 12:00 am

The Ends of Life: Roads to Human Fulfilment in Early Modern England, by Keith Thomas

The downfall of a pessimist

5 March 2008 12:00 am

Ferdinand Mount reviews Paul Delany's biography of George Gessing

A sensitive bounder

31 October 2007 1:57 pm

Ferdinand Mount

Intolerable, unstoppable, indispensable

25 January 2007 9:13 am

There is no getting away from it, Edith Wharton was grand. It never occurred to her to spare expense. On…

The monster we hate to love

9 November 2006 9:34 am

What is it about fruit? There is no more searing passage in the memoirs of Auberon Waugh than the bit…