Words: welsh, v.

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WITH "NIGGARDLY" outlawed in Washington, the BBC has banned welsh, as in to renege on an agreement. Its origins are obscure. A 19th-century betting term, it corrupted from the almost onomatopoeic welch. The OED overlooks the parallel with the German welsch, foreigner, and also the American noun.

Meanwhile, will the BBC transmit Henry V again, or Decline and Fall? Waugh's headmaster Dr Fagan concludes that "the Welsh are the only nation in the world that has produced no graphic or plastic art, no architecture, no drama. They just sing, sing and blow down wind instruments of plated silver. They are deceitful because they cannot discern truth from falsehood, depraved because they cannot discern the consequences of their indulgence."