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Did you know that slips (cuttings) from the Weeping Willow planted by Alexander Pope in his garden at Twickenham were sent to the Empress Catherine of Russia, such was its fame; and the painter J.M.W. Turner is thought in 1808 to have rescued another from the by then doomed tree, painting it and composing a poem in its honour into the bargain. Turner planted this ‘one weak scion’ in his own Twickenham villa, Sandycombe Lodge. One (improbable) legend has Pope’s Weeping willow as the first in the land, and father to all the rest, grown from a twig found alive in a basket of figs sent from Turkey.

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Gertrude Lawrence

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An intellectual is a person who's found one thing that's more interesting than sex. - Aldous Huxley
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On this day:
Gulliver’s Travels Published - 1726, Woolwich Tunnel Opens - 1912, Churchill becomes PM again - 1951, Beatles Receive MBEs - 1965, Last Natural Smallpox Case - 1977
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