Memoir of Glyn Philpot (c. 1945)

by Gerald Heard

He used to ask, "Why don’t you become a Catholic?" and we would then enter on those discussions which resemble, one always imagines, the kind of exchanges that would take place between a fish and a bird if they agreed to discuss the advantages and necessities of their respective positions in the world of life.

It is now just thirty years since I first met him and it is a decade since I last saw him. Since then one has met a number of people who are considered famous and certainly are remarkable, but I am not sure that any of them have given me quite the sense of uniqueness that Glyn did. I had just come to live in London and of course had heard about him, for he was what one might call the young hope of the old side - there had suddenly appeared a young man of brilliant powers who nevertheless was a traditionalist from the start and not a revolutionary. That made him a figure of controversy at once, and of course his great power as a striking portraitist gave him another public beside the intellectuals. 

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