Peter Ryan

The Estimable Symes of Melbourne

Elizabeth Morrison’s large and handsome book tells the life-story of the Melbourne Age newspaper, and the story of the vigorous and versatile Lowland Scots family of Sime (or Syme) who were the newspaper’s presiding power for over a century, from Victorian colonial times on and into Federation. Today, those equipped to indulge in gloomy high-level media speculation are freely predicting that (merely by coincidence with the appearance of Elizabeth Morrison’s book) the Age, no longer under the charmed tutelage of the Symes, will shortly cease publication for ever. I do not myself know the likelihood of this happening, but I…

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