THE VICTORIAN BRANCH of the Society has a nice tradition of annual dinners and interesting after-dinner speakers. I am grateful to Richard Overell, the Victorian Editor, for providing the text of last year’s after-dinner speech by Anthony Marshall, the erudite proprietor of the well-known Alice’s Bookshop in Melbourne. His topic, as befits an after-dinner speech, is both unusual and entertaining. Mr Marshall has done impressive research on the mustache in literature—famous authors who had mustaches (most of them men), and well-known literary characters with mustaches.
Mr Marshall is also a writer and, happily, appears again in this issue as the subject of a book review by Dr Paul Tankard, Lecturer in English at the University of Otago, New Zealand. There is also Dr Jennifer Alison’s review of Victor Crittenden’s recent biography of John Lang, whose works have been the subject of articles and reviews in recent issues of Biblionews. Colin Steele, our most reliable and prolific reviewer, is also represented.
In the recently revived “Notes and Queries” section, there are two interesting Notes suggested by Dr Mark Ferson. He thought that members would be interested to hear about a new project (named APRIL, because everything needs an acronym now) which will make Australian poetry easily available via the Internet. APRIL is a joint effort by the Library and the Department of English at the University of Sydney, and the Copyright Agency Limited. Dr Ferson also drew my attention to a new initiative by the State Library of Victoria to enable people to record personal ‘treasures’ on the Internet, and I have written some thoughts about that. You will see that I am not entirely convinced of the merits of this initiative, and I will be pleased to publish any dissenting views which members may wish to contribute. My email address is email@example.com
Neil A Radford