When I first began to explore the Sitwells—Edith, Osbert, and Sacheverell—in the mid-1970s, the youngest of the trio, Sacheverell, Sachie to his friends, was the only one still alive. Endearingly gregarious by nature and happy to chat with admirers, he was accessible and spoke in the same flowing way that he wrote, sharing nuggets of knowledge, anecdotes, favorite pieces of music, or even his preferred barber. Always, he took it for granted that others knew as much as he did. Never did he dwell too long on any subject, instead flitting from one to another in the way of the hummingbird moth, “serious and diligent . . . the creature of night as well as day,” to whom he compared himself. For Want of the Golden City, a fascinating summary of his life and his various interests, appeared in 1973. Throughout that decade he went on producing booklets of his poetry as well as...


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