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the experience of reading in Britain, from 1450 to 1945...

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King Frederick of Prussia


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King Frederick of Prussia : Oeuvres du philosophe de Sans-Souci

[Catherine Talbot to Elizabeth Carter, 8 May 1760:] 'To-day I have been reading with due wrath and abomination "Le Philosophe Sans Souci." Some lines in that wickedest of all books are so evidently taken from the wrong reasonings of the ungodly in the Wisdom of Solomon, chap. 2, that I confess to me they are perfectly harmless, but I tremble to think what mischief they will do in the fine world. In other parts of the book there seem to be really pretty things -- but how is it possible a man should be such an ideot? How unaccountable is it that pride [...] should make a writer so very mean and grovelling as to triumph in the very thought of annihilation, rather than acknowledge any being in the universe superior to himself? But there would be more use in writing these things to [italics] him [end italics] than to you, so I will have done.'

Century: 1700-1799     Reader/Listener/Group: Catherine Talbot      Print: Book


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