‘A Capital Fellow’
From Wilfrid Seawen Blunt, My Diaries: Being a Personal Narrative of Events, 1888–1914, 2 vols (London: Martin Secker, 1919–20) II, 141–2. Wilfrid Scawen Blunt (1840–1922), poet, playwright, traveller and supporter of nationalist struggles, who was crippled by illness in his later years, was a great admirer of Shaw’s plays, declaring Arms and the Man, John Bull’s Other Island and Fanny’s First Play to be ‘the most amusing plays ever written in any language’ (My Diaries, II, 379). In 1899 his only child Judith had married the artist Neville Stephen Lytton, later 3rd Earl of Lytton (1879–1951), who in 1906 painted Shaw in imitation of Velasquez’s portrait of Pope Innocent X. The following diary entry is dated 10 April 1906.