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Is the Kierkegaardian idea true? and other queries

In February, I was invited to give talks in Bristol and Oxford, and I spent the night after the second talk in a guest room of Worcester College. While looking at the brochure explaining the history of this college, I noticed that a previous guest had left a cryptic inscription, which I took a photograph of:



Can anybody make a guess of what is the first line? It is

What is the **** historical perspective?

but I can’t read the missing fourth word!

And what is the Kierkergaardian idea, really?

4 Responses to “Is the Kierkegaardian idea true? and other queries”

  1. D. Eppstein wrote:

    “bald”, I think. Or maybe “bold”, but I think “bald” would make a bit more sense.


    Monday, May 19, 2014 at 8:06 | Permalink
  2. Florent wrote:

    The first letter looks more like a “w” to me (especially when comparing with the first word “What” of the sentence). The last letter seems to be a “d” and the second to last letter seems to be an “l” (compare with “historical”). So I’m guessing “world” might be the mystery word (although I cannot see an “r”…). Googling “World historical perspective”, the name of Kierkergaard pops up, e.g.


    Monday, May 19, 2014 at 11:30 | Permalink
  3. Kowalski wrote:

    Florent’s guess seems right to me.

    I had also thought of “bold” or “bald”, but couldn’t figure what it might mean, and “world” certainly fits much better. The absence of visible ‘r’ is also noticeable in both of the next words “historical” and “perspective”, which makes it very convincing overall.



    Monday, May 19, 2014 at 11:35 | Permalink
  4. David Stewart wrote:

    “What is the world historical perspective?
    Is the Kierkegaardian idea true?”


    Tuesday, June 3, 2014 at 17:06 | Permalink

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