Æ Love in Bloomsbury: Memories Í Download by ä Frances Partridge

Æ Love in Bloomsbury: Memories Í Download by ä Frances Partridge Frances Partridge is probably best known for loving and in undue course marrying Ralph Partridge, already part of an infamous m nage trois the homosexual Lytton Strachey loved and relied on the practical, handsome Ralph, whom the talented if neurotic painter Dora Carrington had agreed to marry as a means of hanging on to Lytton, with whom she lived and was infatuated This set up symbolises some of the key aspects of the Bloomsbury group their lack of concern about conventions, emphasis on rationality which could be used to justify egotism and also, a point which I have been slow to appreciate, the deep bonds of friendship which endured despite shifting love affairs and gossip.
Born in 1900, the author opens a window on Edwardian childhood in a prosperous middle class family with a wide circle of well connected friends and advanced ideas , despite employing maids to toil up and down the great flights of stairs with coal scuttles and hot water jugs She also provides fascinating, first hand observation of a group of individuals who were often creative, original thinkers and vulnerable in their failings, leaving us to infer the degree to which they were over privileged, self absorbed and sometimes disappointingly trivial.
From an early age Frances questioned accepted views Eavesdropping on two visitors ribald breakfast time conversation which involved discussing God as if he were a human being, she realised that this meant not only that they did not believe in him but neither did she A similar moment of truth , closest to the mystical experience described by friends, came towards the end of her schooldays, with the blinding conviction that whatever she might be forced to do, her ideas and beliefs were her own, and nothing could make her think against her own grain.
Clearly intelligent and physically active, choosing to attend the free thinking Bedales school, at Cambridge she revelled in both philosophy and dancing to a jazz band A private income gave the freedom to treat work as an interesting pastime rather than a necessity Economising on the many trips abroad meant travelling third class rather than first She turned down a job researching why Lyons waitresses dropped so much china for employment at the book shop set up by her brother in law Bunny Garnett with his friend Francis Birrell This belonged to some past idyllic cloud cuckoo land since buyers objected to the fingerprints and tobacco ash left on pages by the staff, the client le was mostly confined to friends who were also members of the Bloomsbury group Even after moving in with Ralph, she seems to have spent many evenings dining out at restaurants with admiring male friends, and although her days seemed to her very full combining work with household preoccupations she writes Who bought the bacon, the butter, the fish I suspect it was our faithful Mabel Certainly I have no recollection of doing it myself Perceptive comments are often laced with a caustic humour Lady Ottoline Morrel in tawdry satin finery chasing avidly with claw like hands over the floor a bun she had dropped A French waiter described in meticulous detail is then dismissed with a face that might be a criminal or a philosopher s, but most likely a half wit s.
She deemed a hermaphrodite fancy dress party a sad come down, a sign of decadence compared with the elaborate performances which earlier parties had featured To set against the boozy socialisting, is the moving account of the battlefields of northern France revisited as an antidote to Ralph s grief over his failure to prevent Carrington s suicide through her inability to live without the deceased Strachey Fourteen years after the event, the few trees still standing were gaunt skeletons riddled with bullets, and one had only to take hold of a branch and there was a rattle of shrapnel falling to the ground.
Part 2 of the Book relies heavily on diary entries, using print too small to read comfortably in the paperback version, and sometimes tedious because of the large amount of name dropping The author may have painted Ralph in an unduly glowing light, and played down her own self gratification Yet overall, this very readable book is full of insight on the experience of being alive and fills one with the urge to do so as fully as did Frances Partridge.
Memories Is The Record Of A Woman Who Not Only Participated In The Lives Of The Legendary Bloomsbury Group, But Was The Circles Oldest Surviving Member Until Her Death In In These Vivid And Perceptive Memoirs, Frances Partridge Records Her Impressions Of Virginia Woolf, The Bells, Roger Fry, Duncan Grant, Maynard Keynes, And The Desmond MacCarthys Frances Partridge is probably best known for loving and in undue course marrying Ralph Partridge, already part of an infamous m nage trois the homosexual Lytton Strachey loved and relied on the practical, handsome Ralph, whom the talented if neurotic painter Dora Carrington had agreed to marry as a means of hanging on to Lytton, with whom she lived and was infatuated This set up symbolises some of the key aspects of the Bloomsbury group their lack of concern about conventions, emphasis on rationality which could be used to justify egotism and also, a point which I have been slow to appreciate, the deep bonds of friendship which endured despite shifting love affairs and gossip Born in 1900, the author opens a window on Edwardian childhood in a prosperous middle class family with a wide circle of well connected friends and advanced ideas , despite employing maids to toil up and down the great flights of stairs with coal scuttles and hot water jugs She also provides fascinating, first hand observation of a group of individuals who were often creative, original thinkers and vulnerable in their failings, leaving us to infer the degree to which they were over privileged, self absorbed and sometimes disappointingly trivial.
From an early age Frances questioned accepted views Eavesdropping on two visitors ribald breakfast time conversation which involved discussing God as if he were a human being, she realised that this meant not only that they did not believe in him but neither did she A similar moment of truth , closest to the mystical experience described by friends, came towards the end of her schooldays, with the blinding conviction that whatever she might be forced to do, her ideas and beliefs were her own, and nothing could make her think against her own grain.
Clearly intelligent and physically active, choosing to attend the free thinking Bedales school, at Cambridge she revelled in both philosophy and dancing to a jazz band A private income gave the freedom to treat work as an interesting pastime rather than a necessity Economising on the many trips abroad meant travelling third class rather than first She turned down a job researching why Lyons waitresses dropped so much china for employment at the book shop set up by her brother in law Bunny Garnett with his friend Francis Birrell This belonged to some past idyllic cloud cuckoo land since buyers objected to the fingerprints and tobacco ash left on pages by the staff, the client le was mostly confined to friends who were also members of the Bloomsbury group Even after moving in with Ralph, she seems to have spent many evenings dining out at restaurants with admiring male friends, and although her days seemed to her very full combining work with household preoccupations she writes Who bought the bacon, the butter, the fish I suspect it was our faithful Mabel Certainly I have no recollection of doing it myself Perceptive comments are often laced with a caustic humour Lady Ottoline Morrel in tawdry satin finery chasing avidly with claw like hands over the floor a bun she had dropped A French waiter described in meticulous detail is then dismissed with a face that might be a criminal or a philosopher s, but most likely a half wit s.
She deemed a hermaphrodite fancy dress party a sad come down, a sign of decadence compared with the elaborate performances which earlier parties had featured To set against the boozy socialisting, is the moving account of the battlefields of northern France revisited as an antidote to Ralph s grief over his failure to prevent Carrington s suicide through her inability to live without the deceased Strachey Fourteen years after the event, the few trees still standing were gaunt skeletons riddled with bullets, and one had only to take hold of a branch and there was a rattle of shrapnel falling to the ground.
Part 2 of the Book relies heavily on diary entries, using print too small to read comfortably in the paperback version, and sometimes tedious because of the large amount of name dropping The author may have painted Ralph in an unduly glowing light, and played down her own self gratification Yet overall, this very readable book is full of insight on the experience of being alive and fills one with the urge to do so as fully as did Frances Partridge.
It s a memoir that can only interest people with a good knowledge of the Bloomsberries , you read it to explore the intimate dynamics of a privileged group of intellectuals It s a mesmerising, if somewhat slightly indulgent way to time travel into a world far far away from contemporary UK A good escape if you are fascinated by the early 20th century creative world An easy read.


An interesting book of memoirs of the author Frances Partridge, her childhood, early life and her entry into the Bloomsbury circle of intellectuals through her marriage to Ralph Partridge, perceptive and honest these accounts are a no holds barred peep hole into the lives of what were considered an elite group of artists and intellectuals of that age.
Scandals, romances, illness, suicide all topics recounted by Frances as she is a keen observer of the lives of others around her including her own experiences.
Interesting and mentions many luminaries of the era and often reads like a novel although in parts Frances adopts the epistolary style for certain areas she relates.
Overall a great read and a good background from someone on the inside of the group to tell it like it really was.
A lovely record for my Bloomsbury collection Articulate and fascinating.