Feeling their age

May 5, 2011

Nicholas Morton's "aged and magnificently bearded relative" ("Pick a book, any book", 21 April) would have agreed with Sir Geoffrey Howe. In 1962, when he was neither aged nor bearded, he declared that "the best preparation for university is the conversation round the dinner table". I fear that changes in social and domestic mores make such aphorisms as of their age and not for all time.

Ian McNay, Professor emeritus, higher education and management, University of Greenwich

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