In answer to Dr Simon Gibbs (Letters, 18 March), Lord Dawson was not charged with regicide in respect of the death of King George V because no one knew about it. It was only in 1986, when Dawson’s diaries were published, that the involuntary euthanasia came to light. In 1936, the royal family and the general public believed that the king had died of natural causes in his sleep.
Professor emeritus John Bryant
• Ian Jack’s article (18 March) brought to mind the “amiable pronouncement made by Charles Saunders, secretary of the Great Western, before a parliamentary committee in July 1839 that perhaps the company would arrange later on to convey the very lowest orders of passengers, once a day at very low speed in carriages of an inferior description, at a very low price, perhaps at night” (taken from John Julius Norwich’s More Christmas Crackers 1992).
• I’m delighted with my Guardian canvas shopper (Letters, passim) and it’s in regular use. On one occasion a white van driver hooted, pointing at the bag. He was gone too quickly for me to work out whether the hoot was in celebration or condemnation. But the best was on Friday, while walking to the library, with the bag under my arm. A stranger stopped for a brief conversation about the weather and craning her neck, she spotted the slogan on the bag. Delighted, she stretched out her arms and gave me a hug.
• My mother used to make bread pudding (Letters, passim) to sell in the cafe she and my father ran during the 1960s in Hoxton. Customers used to refer to this as dustman’s wedding cake. I don’t know whether the current inhabitants of Hoxton would recognise this delicacy.
• I’m surprised that Delia recommends a crossword or a natter while making zabaglione (Cook, 18 March). My friend’s nonna says that five decades of the rosary is the correct activity and will keep you properly focused.
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