Why do journalists always describe archives and their contents as “dusty” (Hidden Robert Dover poem uncovered in 17th century plea roll, 13 April)? The whole point of a properly run archive is to create storage conditions that eradicate dust and other corrupting elements in the interests of long-term preservation.
Former curator, National Film Archive, British Film Institute
• There is much to admire in the ingenuity of Euan Roger’s interpretation of the newly found Robert Dover poem. But there is no need to wrest Dover’s “Apelles” into “apples” or “as pelles” (Latin for animal skins). Dover is referring to the Greek artist Apelles, a byword for the highest skill in painting.
Prof Derek Attridge
• My sister has been a care worker in local authority homes since 1984. In 2012 she was forced to take a pay cut of one-third when her post was “deleted”. Instead of giving her a badge (The politics sketch, 15 April), perhaps the secretary of state could ensure that she and thousands like her are properly paid for their work.
• Your pass notes on Gene Attell (15 April) reminded me of teaching pupils with names such as Trouble and Orphan in Malawi 20 years ago. A Malawian colleague told me some people just chose words they liked the sound of, and that in his village there was a girl called Gonorrhea.
• I have read The Mirror and the Light twice, and loved it both times (Letters, 15 April). However, even the present circumstances cannot persuade me to read Ulysses.
Bishop’s Stortford, Hertfordshire
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