Switch to English Switch to French

The Open University  |   Study at the OU  |   About the OU  |   Research at the OU  |   Search the OU

Listen to this page  |   Accessibility

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

Reading Experience Database UK Historical image of readers
  RED International Logo

RED Australia logo


RED Canada logo
RED Netherlands logo
RED New Zealand logo

Record Number: 12956


Reading Experience:

Evidence:

'It is about ten days since I got rid of a severe inflam[m]ation-of the throat, which confined me to the house for two weeks. During two or three days, I was not able to speak plainly; & you will easily conceive, that I passed my time very heavily. I endeavoured to read several things: I tried a book of modern Biography "The British Plutarch"; but soon finding it to be a very miserable book, I shut it for good and all. I next opened the "Spectator" - and tho' his ja[u]nty manner but ill accorded with my sulky humours, I toiled thro' a volume & a half, with exemplary patience. Lastly, I had recourse to Lord Chesterfield's "advice to his son"; and I think I never before so distinctly saw the pitiful disposition of this Lord. His directions concerning washing the face & paring the nails are indeed very praiseworthy: and I should be content to see them printed in a large type, and placed in frames above the chimneypieces of boarding-schools - for the purpose of enforcing the duties of cleanliness, upon the rising generation. But the flattery, the dissimulation & paltry cunning that he is perpetually recommending, leave one little room to regret that Chesterfield was not his father. Such was the result of my studies, in my sickness: - a result highly unfavourable to those feelings of prostration before high birth & weight of purse, which (many tell us) it is so eminently the duty of all men to cultivate. Indeed this is not the first time that I have noticed in my mind, a considerable tendency to undervalue the great ones of this world'.

Century:

1800-1849

Date:

Between 1 Jun 1816 and 15 Jul 1816

Country:

Scotland

Time

n/a

Place:

city: Annan

Type of Experience
(Reader):
 

silent aloud unknown
solitary in company unknown
single serial unknown

Type of Experience
(Listener):
 

solitary in company unknown
single serial unknown


Reader / Listener / Reading Group:

Reader:

Thomas Carlyle

Age:

Adult (18-100+)

Gender:

Male

Date of Birth:

4 Dec 1795

Socio-Economic Group:

Professional / academic / merchant / farmer

Occupation:

Teacher, later man of letters

Religion:

Christian

Country of Origin:

Scotland

Country of Experience:

Scotland

Listeners present if any:
e.g family, servants, friends

n/a


Additional Comments:

n/a



Text Being Read:

Author:

Thomas Mortimer

Title:

The British Plutarch

Genre:

Biography

Form of Text:

Print: Book

Publication Details

n/a

Provenance

unknown


Source Information:

Record ID:

12956

Source:

Print

Author:

n/a

Editor:

Charles Richard Sanders

Title:

The Collected Letters of Thomas and Jane Welsh Carlyle

Place of Publication:

Durham, NC

Date of Publication:

1970

Vol:

I

Page:

77

Additional Comments:

Letter to Robert Mitchell

Citation:

Charles Richard Sanders (ed.), The Collected Letters of Thomas and Jane Welsh Carlyle (Durham, NC, 1970), I, p. 77, http://can-red-lec.library.dal.ca/Arts/RED/record_details.php?id=12956, accessed: 28 March 2023


Additional Comments:

None

   
   
Green Turtle Web Design