It is always a joy to an old philosopher and lover of literature, like the reviewer, to find a thoughtfully written and thought-producing book like Fifty. In it, Sir Heneage muses over the fact that in his first 25 years of life a human being spends most of his time getting the essentials of an education. A man like a physician keeps learning the techniques of his profession until around the age of 50, after which time he can rest on his oars a bit.
About that time he will have discovered that his body is not as good a bit of machinery as it used to be; he is getting old; perhaps he has largely lost his interest in sex, but his brain should still be keen. Strange is Robert Maxwell's statement on p 152 that "no contemporary of my acquaintance wishes to live beyond fifty, and very few