I return from my Christmas holidays to learn the sad news that Andrew Glyn - the man who taught me more than anyone else - has died.
He taught not just by words, diagrams and equations but by example. And one of his lessons, I realize now, was about the relationship between intellect and political commitment.
I was a student of his in the mid-80s, whilst he was working for the NUM to show - correctly as it turned out - that Thatcher's plans for mass pit closures were economically irrational. His reward for this was to have his phone tapped by MI5. And it's typical of the man that his response to this was bemused humour, not paranoia or self-importance.
However, although this was a time when political passions were much stronger than now, Andrew never let this work colour his teaching. He never gave those of us who shared his views an easy ride, and was never less than generous to those who didn't share his views; his conservative and liberal students held him in as high regard as I did.
Socialism, to him was never an excuse for sloppy thinking. Andrew's first priority was intellectual rigour; socialism was a second priority
Or maybe third, after jazz. He once said: "the three greatest men who ever lived were Lenin, Trotsky and Charlie Parker, not necessarily in that order."
If his socialism was held lightly, so was his intellect. Although he was the cleverest man I ever met, he never used his intelligence to put others down, to show off, or to gratify his ego - indeed, he had less ego than almost anyone. His intellect served his students.
He was a teacher and socialist, in the best senses of both words. And - much more important - he was a great bloke.
Other memories are in this Facebook group.