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

Reading Experience Database UK Historical image of readers
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Record Number: 5275


Reading Experience:

Evidence:

'There was a lending library in town, but with no education or guidance in English literature, [Edwin Muir] wasted valuable reading time. Then there was opposition from his father, who made him return a study of "the Atheist" David Hume. And when his brother gave him 3d to spend, he was almost insulted to learn that the money had gone to purchase Penny Poets editions of "As You Like It", "The Earthly Paradise" and Matthew Arnold. At home there was nothing to read except [various items mentioned in a previous entry and], "Gulliver's Travels", an R.M. Ballantyne tale about Hudson's Bay...a large volume documenting a theological dispute between a Protestant clergyman and a Catholic priest, a novel that was probably "Sense and Sensibility" ("I could make nothing of it, but this did not keep me from reading it")... "I read a complete series of sentimental love tales very popular at the time, called Sunday Stories", as well as a raft of temperance novels. Consequently, when he stumbled across Christopher Marlowe or George Crabbe in that literary junkyard, "it was like an addition to a secret treasure; for no one knew of my passion, and there was none to whom I could speak of it".'

Century:

1850-1899, 1900-1945

Date:

Between 1891 and 1901

Country:

Scotland

Time

n/a

Place:

county: Orkney Islands

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:

Edwin Muir

Age:

Child (0-17)

Gender:

Male

Date of Birth:

15 May 1887

Socio-Economic Group:

Labourer (agricultural)

Occupation:

farmer's son, later poet

Religion:

Protestant

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:

Christopher Marlowe

Title:

n/a

Genre:

Drama

Form of Text:

Print: Book

Publication Details

n/a

Provenance

unknown


Source Information:

Record ID:

5275

Source:

Print

Author:

Jonathan Rose

Editor:

n/a

Title:

The Intellectual Life of the British Working Classes

Place of Publication:

New Haven

Date of Publication:

2001

Vol:

n/a

Page:

376

Additional Comments:

n/a

Citation:

Jonathan Rose, The Intellectual Life of the British Working Classes (New Haven, 2001), p. 376, http://can-red-lec.library.dal.ca/Arts/RED/record_details.php?id=5275, accessed: 29 May 2024


Additional Comments:

See Edwin Muir, 'The Story and the Fable' (1940), pp83-91

   
   
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