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Record 3979

Reading Experience:

" But, when I was nearly sixteen, I made a purchase which brought me into sad trouble, and was the cause of a permanent wound to myself-respect. I had long coveted in the book-shop window a volume in which the poetical works of Ben Jonson and Christopher Marlowe were said to be combined.This I bought at length, and I carried it with me to devour as I trod the desolate road that brought me along the edge of the cliff on Saturday afternoons. Ben Jonson I could make nothing of, but when I turned to 'Hero and Leander' I was lifted to a heaven of passion and music. It was a marvellous revelation of romantic beauty to me, and as paced along that lonely and exquisite highway, with its immense command of the sea, and its peeps ever now and then, through slanting thickets, far down to the snow-white shingle, I lifted up my voice, singing the verses, as I strolled along..[quote]so it wenton, and I thought I had never read anything so lovely...[quote]it all seemed to my fancy intoxicating beyond anything I had ever even dreamed of, since I had not yet become aquainted with any of the modern romanticists."
Century: 1850-1899
Date: Between 1 Jan 1865 and 31 Dec 1865
Country: England
Time: afternoon: Saturday afternoon
daytime: Saturday afternoon
Place: county: Devon
other location: walking along a cliff-top path in Devon
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:Edmund Gosse
Age Child (0-17)
Gender Male
Date of Birth 1849
Socio-economic group: Professional / academic / merchant / farmer
Occupation: son of zoological writer
Religion: Plymouth Brethren
Country of origin: England
Country of experience: England
Listeners present if any:
(e.g. family, servants, friends, workmates)
Additional comments: n/a


Text Being Read:

Author: Christopher Marlowe
Title: Hero and Leander
Genre: Poetry
Form of Text: Print: Book
Publication details: n/a
Provenance: owned


Source Information:

Record ID: 3979  
Source - Print  
  Author: Edmund Gosse
  Editor: n/a
  Title: Father and Son : a study of two temperments
  Place of Publication: Keele
  Date of Publication: 1994
  Vol: n/a
  Page: 190-191
  Additional comments: n/a

Citation: Edmund Gosse, Father and Son : a study of two temperments (Keele, 1994), p. 190-191,, accessed: 08 June 2023

Additional comments:



Reading Experience Database version 2.0.  Page updated: 27th Apr 2016  3:15pm (GMT)