And Another Thing | 16 February 2008

What is a genius? We use the word frequently but surely, to guard its meaning, we should bestow it seldom. To me, a genius is a person whose gift contains an element of the inex- plicable, not to be accounted for by heredity, upbringing, background, exertions and talents, however noble. Thus, we can’t account for

Arts feature

Roman souvenir

Laura Gascoigne follows in the footsteps of the 18th-century Grand Tourist ‘I was much disappointed in seeing Rome,’ complained the English traveller Sarah Bentham in the 1790s. ‘The streets are narrow, dirty and filthy. Even the palaces are a mixture of dirt and finery and intermixed with wretched mean houses. The largest open spaces in

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