We at TVC have procrastinated about posting an item on the death of Umberto Eco on the 19th February, due to our shame at not having read a great deal of his writing. Of course we have read the potboiler “The Name of the Rose” and the accessible “The Island of the Day Before”. But we have not been able to get past about page 50 of “The Prague Cemetery”, “Foucault’s Pendulum” or “The Mysterious Flame of Queen Loana”, finding the prose at times impenetrable. But that is our deficiency and we will try harder. We do admire his essays “On Literature” and the beautiful anthology “The Infinity of Lists” . His achievements as a novelist, critic, teacher and essayist were splendid. His family name is supposedly the acronym for Ex Caelis Oblatus (A Gift From the Heavens). We will try harder.