Compiled by London Swaminathan


Date: 14 November 2018

GMT Time uploaded in London –10-57 am
Post No. 5662

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A shallow poet took Piron (FRENCH DRAMATIST)  into his confidence and entrusted him a long manuscript, assuring the critic that the verses contained therein were the best he had ever written . With an air condescension, he asked Piron to put a cross before each line which he thought might possibly be improved. When he asked for his manuscript a few days later Piron handed it to him without a word. Leafing hastily through it, the author exclaimed delightedly,
Why I don’t see a single cross on my paper.
No, returned Piron dryly,
I didn’t want to make a graveyard of it.




When Michelangelo had completed his great sculptural work, the David, Gonfalonier Soderini of Florence who had ordered it came to inspect his purchase. Among his other criticisms he objected to the nose, pronouncing it to be out of all proportion to the rest of the figure, and added, that he wished some reduction should take place in its size. Angelo knew well with whom he had to deal; he mounted the scaffold for the figure upwards of twelve feet high, and giving a few sonorous but harmless blows with his hammer on the stone, let fall a handful of marble dust which he had scrapped up from the floor below; and then descending from his station turned to the Gonfalonier with a look expectant of his approbation. At, exclaimed the sagacious critic; now you have given it life indeed.

Michelangelo was content, and receiving his four hundred scrudi for his tasks, wisely said no more . It would have been no gratification to a man like him, to have shown the incapacity of a presumptuous critic like Soderini.



Professor Brander Mathews was a great stickler for proprieties. At an opening night he had gone to review a play. The next day he was asked for his opinion by one of his students at Colombia university.
Well, gentlemen, said Professor Mathews, the play was in four acts, and I was there as the guest of the author.
After the first act the audience sat silent and I applauded. After the second act I sat quiet while the audience hissed.

The professor took a long drawn and reminiscent pull at his cigarette, then held it at arm’s length and flicked off the ashes.
And the third act?
Well gentlemen, and there was a gleam of satisfaction in the Professor s eye, after the third act I went out and bought standing room and came back and hissed too.

Xxxx Subham xxx


15 Anecdotes from George Bernard Shaw’s Life- Part 1


Article No.2013

Written by London swaminathan


Date : 23  July 2015

Time uploaded in London : 14-17


There is a legend about the fervent message Bernard Shaw received from Isadora Duncan expressing the opinion that by every eugenics principle they should have a child.

“Think what a child it would be”, she said, “with my body and your brain.”

Shaw sent the following response, discouraging the preposition, “Think how unfortunate it would be if the child were to have my body and your brain.”

2.Shaw—an imaginary Personage?

Bernard Shaw’s name first became familiar to the general public as the result of scurrilous attacks, disguised as interviews, made upon by him by a section of the London evening press. The interviewer would force his way into Shaw’s modest apartment, apparently for no other purpose than to bully and insult him.

Many people maintained that Shaw was an imaginary personage. Why did he stand it? Why didn’t he kick the interviewer downstairs? Failing that why didn’t he call the police? It seemed difficult to believe in the existence of a being so Christian as this poor persecuted Shaw appeared to be. Everyone talked about him.

As a matter of fact, the interviews were written by Shaw himself.



3.Shaw as a Critic

When Bernard Shaw wrote dramatic criticisms for the “London Saturday Review” he commented about a certain play in his column as follows:

“I am in a somewhat foolish position concerning a play at the Opera Comique, whither I was bidden this day week. For some reason I was not supplied with a program; so that I never learned the name of the play. At the end of the second act the play had advanced about as far as  an ordinary dramatist would have brought it five minutes after the first rising of the curtain; or say as far as  Ibsen would have brought it ten years before the event. Taking advantage of the second interval (intermission) to stroll out into the Strand for a little exercise, I unfortunately forgot all about my business, and actually reached home before it occurred to me that I had not seen the end of the play.  Under these circumstances, it would ill become me to dogmatize on the merits of the work or its performance. I can only offer the management my apologies.”

4.Practical Joking

George Bernard Shaw was poring over a second hand book stall of volumes much marked down, when he came across a volume containing his own plays. The book was inscribed, moreover, to a friend, beneath whose name on the fly-leaf, G.B.S. saw, written in his own hand, “With renewed compliments. G.B.S,” and sent it back to the early recipient.


In reply to an invitation to lunch with Lady Randolph, George Bernard Shaw wired: “certainly not; what have I done to provoke such an attack on my well known habits?”

Lady Randolph sent another telegram:

“Know nothing of your habits; hope they are not as bad as your manners.


6.Shaw came to conquer England

Lillah Mc Carthy asked Bernard Shaw why he had come to live in England instead of seeking inspiration among the Dublin (Irish) poets – George Moore, A.E.Yeats and the others. He answered: “Lord bless you, I am old enough to be A.E.’s father; and George Moore had not discovered Ireland then. He was in Paris studying painting. He hadn’t even discovered himself. The Ireland that you know did not exist. I could not stay there, dreaming my life away on the Irish hills. England had conquered Ireland; so there was nothing for it but to come over and conquer England. Which, you will notice, I have done pretty thoroughly.”

7.Oscar Wilde  on G.B.Shaw

When G.B.Shaw, as a young man, emerged from his native Ireland and moved to England he began writing a column for a London weekly publication.  At that time Oscar Wilde was enjoying his vogue as a wit and epigram maker. One evening an acquaintance, calling upon Wilde, happened upon a copy of the paper to which Shaw was a contributor and reading therein one of Shaw’s characteristic articles which was signed with the author’s initials, said to his host:

“I say, Wilde, who is chap G.B.S. who is doing a department for this sheet?”

“He is a young Irishman named Shaw,” said Wilde. “Rather forceful, isn’t he?”

“Forceful”, echoed the other, “well, rather! My word, how he does cut and slash! He doesn’t seem to spare anyone he knows. I should say he is in a fair way to make himself a lot of enemies.”

“well,” said Wilde, “as yet he hasn’t become prominent enough to have enemies. But none of his friends like him.”

Rest of the anecdotes in Part 2……………..