Author Orlando Figes, a professor of history at Birbeck College and a specialist in Russian studies, accepted a public apology at London’s High Court over an Evening Standard story headed: “On the £30,000 shortlist, the book that won’t win the prize.”
Mr Justice Eady was told by Professor Figes’s solicitor, David Price, that the piece, published on 14 May, claimed the professor’s book, Natasha’s Dance, a Cultural History of Russia, had been ruled out of contention for the prestigious BBC 4 Samuel Johnson Prize for Non-Fiction after the ?ve judges had considered allegations of plagiarism.
“The claimant accepts that as a historian and author, his work is open to the widest review and criticism.
However, he regards an allegation of plagiarism as a serious attack on his honesty and integrity,” said Price.
He said that the paper had now expressed regret that the professor had been upset by the article and said it was not their intention to accuse him of plagiarism. Julia Schop?in for the Standard said it apologised to the professor and agreed to pay his legal costs.