Letter: The Sainsburys are not the Medicis

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The Independent Online
Lisa Jardine is unfortunately correct. Gangsters create art. Two generations after Ghengis Khan, the world's greatest mass murderer, we had Kubla Khan, the world's greatest art patron. Tamburlaine built Samarkhand. His great-great-grandson Babur, psychopath, poet and patron of the arts, founded the Moghul dynasty in India.

In Italy and England, the grandsons of gangsters funded Botticelli, Edmund Spenser, Shakespeare and Michaelangelo. The antics of Al Capone, Big Jim Colosimo, etc, inspired writers such as Hecht, MacArthur and Mankiewicz and countless Hollywood movies.

As a playwright whose current patron, the BBC, is ceasing to exist, I'm open to offers from any yardies, Tongs, Mafiosi or chairmen of privatised water companies who might be out there.

John Fletcher

Shepton Mallet, Somerset