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« The Woman and the Puppet by Pierre Louÿs, translated by Jeremy Moore | Main | readable novels are not bad novels: a rant »

Monday, 20 February 2017


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Christine Harding

How fascinating, and how sad that the world has forgotten this mini-state. Somehow it sounds so unlikely that for a moment I thought it was some kind of joke, like the Guardian's 'San Seriffe' April Fool!


Wow! This was so interesting! I have never heard of Moresnet before. I like your student's summation of it being the closest thing to the Wild West Europe ever had!

Jenny @ Reading the End

BUT HOW. I read this whole thing in a state of near-disbelief, but I trust you and Wikipedia has confirmed it. What an excellent slice of history. I shall tell it to everyone I see this week.


Christine, it does sound like a joke, doesn't it? But it even had its own flag.

Stefanie, nor had I, but Philip Dröge's recent book has made it better known here, I think. I have to say, almost every article I read about it made the Wild West parallel, so my student is not alone in this.

Jenny, it did become a bit of an echo chamber because everything I read on the internet was more or less the same. I had a lot of questions about some of the details and I couldn't find answers to them.

Maybe some day I'll write about the village of Baarle-Hertog, not far from here, which has possibly the most insane border in the world. (And yesterday I discovered there's a place called Erps-Kwerps, which I must visit just for the name...)

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