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This photograph makes one a little sad and yet it shouldn’t. Forster was devoted to his mother, even if often exasperated by her, and they mostly lived happily together for sixty-five years. Lily’s influence hovers in the background of everything he wrote and in another, later era she would have been a much sparkier, more interesting figure than she was allowed to be by post-Victorians. Morgan Forster died on June 7th 1970. Fifty years later glasses will be raised to him all over the world.

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59 Lamb's Conduit Street, London WC1N 3NB