Letter: Diplomatic reply

Click to follow
The Independent Culture
Diplomatic reply

Sir: May I thank Merrick Baker-Bates (letter, 19 June), who added to the sum of my knowledge in properly attributing my quotation about an ambassador being "sent to lie abroad for the good of his country" to Henry Wotton? I had previously assumed that it was from Benjamin Franklin, who I believe also had an eye for a pretty face and a well-turned ankle, appropriately to the double entendre.

I trust however, that Mr Baker-Bates is not arguing with Peter Ustinov: "A diplomat these days is nothing but a head-waiter who's allowed to sit down occasionally." I doubt his own distinguished service in Tokyo, Kuala Lumpur and Los Angeles supported that contention.


(Haltemprice and Howden, C)

House of Commons

London SW1