Letter: In Brief

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Sir: Miles Kington's forays into the intricacies of English as a foreign language reminds me of the anecdote of a Swedish friend.

A Swede staying with an English family had difficulties in understanding English cooking terminology. What exactly was a tart, a pie or a trifle?

He had finally grasped the meaning of all three when his hostess served a pie at dinner. "My dear," said her husband, "this pie is a trifle tart!"

Not to mention the other pitfalls the poor Swede could have fallen into with "tarts" and "unconsider'd trifles" and even a pie made of swedes!


London SW7