Monthly Archives: November 2015

Winners of English Recital Competition invited for tea in the British Embassy

This year’s winners of the English Recital Competition for Baranya secondary schools are invited for tea and scones in the British Embassy with Chargé d’Affaires Theresa Bubbear.


Shakespeare on Film – March 2016: Measure for Measure


Simply English with Ruth Keggin and Eoghan Ó Ceannabháin

Simply English performing with Ruth Keggin and Eoghan Ó Ceannabháin at the House of Arts and Literature, Pécs, 4th November, 2015.



An English Christmas

Simply English, Keith Kendrick, Sylvia Needham


Charles Dickens 200: Text and Beyond

SPECHEL e-ditions


Charles Dickens 200: Text and Beyond: a commemorative volume is the second volume in the new SPECHEL e-ditions series. It commemorates the two-hundredth anniversary of Dickens’s birth, and for the purpose brings together, in addition to ‘dyed-in-the-wool’ Dickensians, a curious variety of experts from a miscellany of areas of expertise ranging from folksinger to linguist and even magician.

The chapters approach Charles Dickens from musical aspects ranging from opera to music-hall song and street ballad, from his role as a family conjuror, to psychological analyses of various of his characters and linguistic analysis of his style. He is regarded through the prism of the Irish literary scene but also through the eye of the Hungarian translator of his work, through operatic and photographic adaptations of his subject-matter. Every new chapter produces an exciting and unexpected new facet of the author, whose birth the volume celebrates.

Mr. Pepys and the Turk

SPECHEL e-ditions


“Mr. Pepys and The Turk” is SPECHEL’s first inroad into publication. In line
with the mission embodied in its name, this book and subsequent publications
will be available in ebook and print-on-demand form, making it considerably
more accessible than if it were solely a physical object.
“Mr Pepys and Turk” tells of English popular notions of the “Turk” through
history, centring upon the diary entries of civil servant Samuel Pepys
(1633-1703) and the street ballads which he loved to collect. The author’s
fascination with this subject stems from his dual life as an academic/folk singer,
but also from having lived and worked most of his adult life in Hungary’s only
city with two domed mosques, a minaret and other Turkish remains. Hungary is
a country where the Turk gets bad press through incomplete and biased formal
education and popular conception, yet one of the most charming children’s
rhymes of which (included here in the author’s translation) features Mehmet the
Unlike Hungary, England was not invaded by the Turk, unless you count a very brief visit to the Cornish coast, the only surviving trace of which is England’s oldest public house called “The Turk’s Head”. Yet popular misconceptions abound in both cultures through various media, including a seventeenth-century English street ballad about a battle in Hungary between the European forces and the Ottoman Empire.
Here, then, is the “Turk”, not a historical man but a popular concept – lustful, terrible, but also poor and innocent as English popular notions fashion and refashion him through time and perspective.