Remembering Eliot

  • Stephen Spender


In World Within World I wrote that I first met Eliot in 1930 when he invited me to lunch at a London restaurant. I had forgotten that the first meeting must have been at University College, Oxford, when he addressed an undergraduate club, the Martlets, on Wednesday, 16 May 1928. There was a dinner, at the end of which the menu was passed round and signed by all present. I still have this menu, with Eliot’s autograph; that I should have kept it bears witness to the aura Eliot’s name already had for undergraduate poets. Eliot attended the meeting of the Martlets, on the condition that he should not give an address, but would answer questions only. Inevitably, the club being half literary, half philosophical, the discussion turned to the problem, ‘How can we prove that a work of art is beautiful?...’


Early Thirty Literary Periodical Young Writer Impersonal Pronoun Young Poet 
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© Stephen Spender 1978

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  • Stephen Spender

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