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January 1963

The Last Bassoon: A Diary by Fred Bason

Arch Intern Med. 1963;111(1):133-134. doi:10.1001/archinte.1963.03620250137039

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Many readers will remember some of Bason's contributions to the Saturday Book. I just looked up my correspondence file and found several long, rambly, but still interesting letters in which Bason offered to sell me all manner of books, alas, none medical. I wound up by getting a set of his diaries.

Fred Bason is a strange phenomenon, a Cockney diarist who has made a number of contributions to the Saturday Book, and has published 4 separate books of selections from his diaries. He tells in a fresh and spritely style, hewing fairly close to the Cockney vernacular, at least I guess so, of his interesting existence as an itinerant seller of secondhand books who wandered far and wide throughout his native London buying books as bargains and selling them for a small profit. He had 2 passions. One was to collect autographs. The other was to eke out enough

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