Arts: This was the week that was

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The Independent Culture
Today On this day in 1982 the big theatrical event was not on stage but in court, when Michael Bogdanov went on trial on a criminal charge of directing the allegedly indecent The Romans in Britain. Howard Brenton's play featuring a male rape had been denounced by the drama critic Mary Whitehouse, but the brave Attorney-General stopped the trial - and the fun - next day.

Tomorrow In 1898 artist Aubrey Beardsley came to his own fin de siecle, dying the way a leading Decadent and Yellow Book illustrator would want to go: of TB in France. "Yes, We Have No No Bananas" was published in 1923; some said the song owed its tune to the Hallelujah Chorus. Try it in the bath.

Wednesday In a dreadful warning to whoever succeeds Ted Hughes, Poet Laureate Colley Cibber was summoned to court by Captain Hercules Vinegar (alias novelist Henry Fielding) on a charge of murder - of the English language.

Thursday Was Ivan so Terrible? Probably. He died in 1584, allegedly from sorrow after killing his son, but to his credit inspired the film epic of Eisenstein the Terribly Good.

Friday Edgar Rice Burroughs died in 1950; as well as creating Tarzan, the aristocratic apeman, he wrote The Chessmen of Mars, The Wizard of Venus and a sequence of novels set inside a hollow Earth.

Saturday In 1917 Vera Lynn was born as the less harmonious-sounding Vera Welch; the "Forces Sweetheart" hit the charts with "We'll Meet Again" and "White Cliffs of Dover", neither of which, oddly enough, have been re-issued in a drum'n'bass remix.

Sunday In 1969 John Lennon and Yoko Ono gave peace a chance by staying in bed; on honeymoon at the Amsterdam Hilton they staged their "Beds in Peace" demonstration.