The late Mr Thomas Burke was well known for his popular writings on London life, and the phrases employed by literary reviewers of his earlier works are precisely applicable to his English Townsman: ‘it swarms with rare and amusing pictures,’ ‘it is a mine of out-of-the-way facts.’ A man of strong prejudices, Mr Burke was accustomed to see what he expected to see, factory workers, for example, to this day commencing toil at 6 a.m. while their employers ‘roll-up in their cars at about eleven.’ Nevertheless he is concerned to emphasize the wholly laudable thesis that it is just as ‘natural’ for men to live in towns as in villages. Yet his supporting arguments are not always very happy, as when he cites the Victorian sociologist, Henry Mayhew, who had worked out (and mapped) the geographical incidence of crime. It seems that while total criminality did not vary, the townsman was addicted merely to burglary, larceny, forgery, pocket-picking and shop-lifting, while the countryman specialized in crimes ‘of the kind named unmentionable’ (which incidentally included illegitimacy). And after all, says Mr Burke ‘burglary and thieving are fairly wholesome and quite natural activities.’ Many of our towns, so he thought, were at least as old as our villages, for ‘when [man] rose from savagery it was instinctive in him to gather with his fellows for mutual protection, for the exchange of knowledge and for the sharing of experience’. Such an opinion may pass muster in a book which, in point of fact, makes very entertaining light reading. But unfortunately it is the kind of opinion that is very widespread, and in particular our Planners, like Mr Burke, have never read their Gordon Childe. Build some houses, add a so-called ‘trading-estate’ (actually a congeries of small factories), ‘decant’ the ‘over-spill’ of some growing city into the houses and ‘steer’ some industrialists (or bribe them) into the factories : there is your recipe for a New Town. The habit of studying present-day cities in their functional aspects, and of examining the relationship between function and geographical situation has not yet spread from the geographers to the borough engineers, borough surveyors and county architects who form the corps d’élite of physical Planners; still less of course do these experts probe with the archaeologist and the historian into the problem of the roots and origins of urban life. In the United States there is evidence of a wider vision, and if the young men and women reading philosophy, history and economics at Oxford together with their contemporaries reading mathematics and physics at Cambridge were even to flit through just the Syllabus and Maps of the Chicago course in Anthropology described by the Editor in the September number of ANTIQUITY, our future governing classes might be in a better position to resolve the antithesis between Plato and Karl Marx.