Memories I Should Have Had

“Luscious” Lucius Beebe, columnist, bon vivant, historian, dandy deluxe. “Renaissance man” is an inadequate description.
Charles E. “Chip” Bohlen. Diplomat, reluctant cold warrior. Later ambassador to the U.SS.R. One of “The Wise Men.” No sense of humor though.
Winston Churchill’s only son, Randolph, a man of so many gifts, but only one talent: antagonism.
Anna Akhmatova, the greatest Russian poet of the 20th century. She called Isaiah Berlin her “guest from the future.” The authorities punished her for the rest of her life for visiting with Berlin, who they thought was a spy.
Playwright, member of Congress, ambassador, Republican powerhouse, Dorothy Parker’s nemesis. She married Henry Luce, the Time-Life mogul, who may have inspired her barb, “A man’s home may seem to be his castle on the outside; inside, it is more often his nursery.”
Philosopher and historian of ideas, Isaiah Berlin felt that the 14 hours he spent with Akhmatova were the most important of his life.
Maurice Bowra, Warden of Wadham College, Oxford. Mentor to generations. Inspiration for Mr. Samgrass in “Brideshead Revisited.” Waugh at his wickedest.
Anton Walbrook, the great Austrian actor best known for his portrayal of Boris Lermontov in “The Red Shoes” (1948). He sought refuge in England when the Nazis took over.

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