An obituary of Jan Gordon: "Life in the Round"

I just came across a warmly-written obituary of Jan Gordon from the "Liverpool Daily Post," reprinted in the Staffordshire Advertiser of Saturday 5th February 1944.

"Jan Gordon, whose death I have to record with great regret, had been for some time the London art critic of the 'Daily Post.' He was sixty-one, and had been battling against ill-health for years, but it never reduced his gusto. He was an extraordinary zestful man, most happily united to another enthusiastic student of life. 

The books by Jan and Cora Gordon went under the skin of the land they travelled over with such gaiety and with such inexhaustible interest in people and places. He liked old civilizations, but as his 6,000 miles' journey across the United States in an ancient motor showed, he was equally alive to new. He was alive, in fact, to everything he touched. 

His art criticism was deeply informed, but humane and humorous. He was a musician and an excellent performer on the Spanish guitar. He could switch in talk with perfect ease from folk poetry to the latest crime novels. He himself wrote detective stories under the name of William Gore, a characteristically robust pseudonym. 

He could be perfectly happy in the wilds, but when I once told him that when I was a tired stranger in a foreign city I preferred to sit and take a rest in the main railway station rather than in some park, he laughed and said: 'Yes, I like main railway stations, too.' He was what I call a civilized man - urbane, informed, broadminded, generous, gay, full of curiosity about life. His presence was an infusion of vitality to any company."

Other obituaries of Jan Gordon can be found here.



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