Colorful Mosses, Cedarberg Wilderness Area, Northern Cape, South Africa

The Cederberg mountains (Afrikaans: Sederberg) and nature reserve are located near Clanwilliam, approximately 300 km north of Cape Town, South Africa at about 32°30?S 19°0?E. The mountain range is named after the endangered Clanwilliam Cedar (Widdringtonia cedarbergensis), which is a tree endemic to the area. The mountains are noted for dramatic rock formations and San rock art. The Cederberg Wilderness Area is administered by CapeNature.

Cederberg is now the generally accepted spelling for the area, which combines the English (Cedarberg) and Afrikaans (Sederberg) variants.

Colorful Mosses, Cedarberg Wilderness Area, Northern Cape, South Africa

Nigel Forbes Dennis (January 16, 1912–July 19, 1989) was an English writer, critic, playwright and magazine editor.Dennis held jobs at the National Board of Review of Motion Pictures, a censorship body; The New Republic, a progressive political journal; and Time (magazine). His job at Time returned him to Britain in 1950 (or 1949). Easing into novel writing, in 1949 he published his first acknowledged novel, Boys and Girls Come out to Play (A Sea Change in the USA), which won the Anglo-American novel award for that year (shared with Anthony West). It starts semi-autobiographically, with a depiction of a young man having an epileptic fit, a condition Dennis suffered from all his life. Later in 1955, Dennis published his most notable work, Cards of Identity, a witty psychological satire that gained cult acclaim. The novel was converted into a play the next year. Dennis’s career would involve a mixture of non-fiction, novel, criticism, and play writing. Starting in 1961, his book reviews would appear in the Sunday Telegraph for two decades. He began as a contributor for Encounter, a cultural-literary magazine, in 1963, and would eventually become Co-Editor before terminating his relationship in 1970.

Dennis’s books were few but distinguished. His other works include Two Plays and a Preface (1958), Dramatic Essays (1962) and the novel A House in Order (1966). A short study of Jonathan Swift won the Royal Society of Literature Award under the W. H. Heinemann bequest in 1966; this was followed by Exotics: Poems of the Mediterranean and Middle East (1970) and his last book, An Essay on Malta (1972), with illustrations by Osbert Lancaster.

Three of his plays were put on at the Royal Court theatre: Cards of Identity (1956), The Making of Moo (1957) and August for the People (1961). The first London revival of The Making of Moo was staged at the Orange Tree Theatre, Richmond, London, in November 2009.

According to a letter published in The Guardian in May 2008: “In the 1930s, Dennis wrote Chalk and Cheese; a co-educational school novel under the pseudonym Richard Vaughan. Legend has it that, before publication, every copy was destroyed in an air raid on a warehouse.” In fact the novel, which was largely autobiographical, was published in 1934 and reviewed by the Times Literary Supplement, among others.

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