Page 161. " A Tennyson Garden, heavy with scent, languid "

Alfred, Lord Tennyson (1809-1892) was Poet Laureate from 1850 to his death, the longest serving in that post during Queen Victoria’s reign. His most famous works include The Charge of the Light Brigade and In Memoriam A.H.H.

Page 162. " when I dropped my pass and let him pick it up for me? No handkerchief, no fan, I use what’s handy. "

In the days of courtly love, a gentlewoman instigated a flirtation with a man by dropping her lace handkerchief, or her fan, in order that the man might retrieve it and strike up an acquaintance.

Page 165. " From the seventies, I think. A Vogue. "
Jerry Hall, Vogue 1975
Creative Commons AttributionJerry Hall, Vogue 1975 - Credit: Dovima is Devine

 Vogue is a fashion magazine published in 19 countries worldwide. Founded in 1892 by Arthur Baldwin Turnure, it was taken over by Condé Nast in 1909 and first published in the UK in 1916, where it was a huge success.

Featuring articles on politics, art and culture alongside the high-fashion editorial, it remains the leader in its field.

Page 165. " something Renaissance about the pose "

The Renaissance was a cultural movement beginning in Florence, Italy, in the 14th century, and gradually spreading through the rest of Europe over the subsequent three centuries, taking the Middle Ages into the Modern era.

While it encompassed enormous changes and upheavals in intellectual, social and political thought, it is for artistic achievements that the period is best known, particularly those of Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci.

Page 175. " What the machines print is prayers, roll upon roll, prayers going out endlessly. "

These automated prayer machines recall similar devices in Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four. In his job at the Ministry of Truth, Winston Smith dictates all the fabricated new stories into a ‘speakright’ machine which ‘rectifies’ the truth. In the fiction department, machines endlessly print cheap, pulpy pornographic novels for the proletariat.