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Beaton Beaten

On his first day at his day-school in Hampstead, Cecil Beaton was set upon by a group of bullies "growling like wire-haired terriers." They were led by a diminutive boy in green knickerbockers, who had singled Beaton out as the lamb for slaughter.

"He stood on his toes and thrust his face, with a diabolical stare, closer and closer to mine," Beaton later recalled, "ever closer until the eyes converged into one enormous Cyclops nightmare... By the time the physical onslaught began fright had mercifully made me only half-conscious. That the tortures were devilish in their invention I can be fairly certain, since they were conducted under such expert leadership."

The boy in green knickerbockers? Evelyn Waugh.

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