Saturday morning found me seeking out Diplo, hoping I'd catch him defrosting a fox or something for his breakfast, but the familiar battle-scarred Landrover was not on the gravel outside Diplo Hall. So I decamped down the road to one of my favourite Northamptonshire churches at Southwick. Here the combination of church and hall is a perfect example of one of the essential Unmitigated England fantasies, viz: that rectors holding wigs against the wind still scuttle in buckled shoes across lawns bordered by hollyhocks between dark oil-lit vestries and their masters' sunlit drawing rooms. For once I'd remembered my tripod, and so was at last able to photograph the monument in the chancel: 'Sacred to the memory of George Lynn Esqr who departed this life on the 6th day of May 1758'. And there's his wife, looking up adoringly at her husband. The craftsman here is French sculptor Louis-Francois Roubiliac, and this must have been one of his last commissions, executed in 1760. I had stared at it a couple of times before I saw, with a pang of immense pleasure, Anne Bellamy Lynn's sculpted foot. So relaxed, so informal. The years rolled away as I imagined her briefing Louis-Francois, staring at him as she let her slipper casually drop from her heel.
Philip Roth: End of a chapter
2 days ago