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Hadrian the Seventh: extracts (7)

Then I began to write, simply because of the imperious necessity of expressing myself. And I had much to say. Note please that I asked nothing better than to be a humble chantry-priest, saying Mass for the dead. It was denied me. I turned to express beautiful and holy ideals on canvas. Again I was…

Baron Corvo aka Fr. Rolfe

Born on this date. If you appreciate the anarchic A Confederacy of Dunces you may well enjoy Rolfe’s super funny and outrageous novel Hadrian the Seventh. A classic in its own right is A. J. A. Symons’ biography of Rolfe, The Quest For Corvo. Below: Alec McCowen as Hadrian the Seventh, Mermaid Theatre, April 1968 winning his…

Frederick Rolfe

I’ve been exploring a terrific repository of “Rolfeana” curated by blogger/translator James Conway on his very interesting Strange Flowers blog, its tagline — “A cabinet of human curiosities”. If like me you have a soft spot for radical individualists (i.e. transgressive “characters”), then  James’ blog is just the ticket: [i]s a product of the blogger’s obsession with history’s…