LETTER : Flaming days in high school

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Sir: Regarding the origin of "flame" in Charles Arthur's A to Z of the digital world (11 March), when I was a high school student in Canada in the 1970s, "flame" was the commonly used contraction of "shot down in flames".

Being Canadian, and with pretentions toward bilingualism, we eventually switched to "bruler" or "brulesville", but the original connotation of `"flame", with its quasi-violent vision of a WWII Icarus plummeting towards ignominy remained with us always.

R Dornan

London SW3

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