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Recreations of Christopher North, Volume 1   By: (1785-1854)

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First Page:

RECREATIONS

OF

CHRISTOPHER NORTH

A New Edition in Two Volumes

VOL. I.

William Blackwood and Sons Edinburgh and London MDCCCLXVIII

CONTENTS OF VOL. I.

PAGE CHRISTOPHER IN HIS SPORTING JACKET: FYTTE FIRST, 1

FYTTE SECOND, 29

FYTTE THIRD, 52

TALE OF EXPIATION, 75

MORNING MONOLOGUE, 104

THE FIELD OF FLOWERS, 121

COTTAGES, 135

AN HOUR'S TALK ABOUT POETRY, 179

INCH CRUIN, 231

A DAY AT WINDERMERE, 242

THE MOORS! PROLOGUE, 262

FLIGHT FIRST GLEN ETIVE, 290

FLIGHT SECOND THE COVES OF CRUACHAN, 316

FLIGHT THIRD STILL LIFE, 336

FLIGHT FOURTH DOWN RIVER AND UP LOCH, 365

HIGHLAND SNOW STORM, 390

THE HOLY CHILD, 410

OUR PARISH, 422

PREFATORY NOTE.

Like most of Professor Wilson's miscellaneous writings, the articles contained in the two following volumes appeared originally in "Blackwood's Magazine." Having been revised and considerably remodelled by their Author, they were published in three volumes, 8vo, in 1842, under the general title, "The Recreations of Christopher North." In the reprint, the special titles of some of the articles are different from those which the same papers bear in the Magazine.

RECREATIONS

OF

CHRISTOPHER NORTH.

CHRISTOPHER IN HIS SPORTING JACKET.

FYTTE FIRST.

There is a fine and beautiful alliance between all pastimes pursued on flood, field, and fell. The principles in human nature on which they depend, are in all the same; but those principles are subject to infinite modifications and varieties, according to the difference of individual and national character. All such pastimes, whether followed merely as pastimes, or as professions, or as the immediate means of sustaining life, require sense, sagacity, and knowledge of nature and nature's laws; nor less, patience, perseverance, courage even, and bodily strength or activity, while the spirit which animates and supports them is a spirit of anxiety, doubt, fear, hope, joy, exultation, and triumph in the heart of the young a fierce passion in the heart of the old a passion still, but subdued and tamed down, without, however, being much dulled or deadened, by various experience of all the mysteries of the calling, and by the gradual subsiding of all impetuous impulses in the frames of all mortal men beyond perhaps three score, when the blackest head will be becoming grey, the most nervous knee less firmly knit, the most steely springed instep less elastic, the keenest eye less of a far keeker, and, above all, the most boiling heart less like a caldron or a crater yea, the whole man subject to some dimness or decay, and, consequently, the whole duty of man like the new edition of a book, from which many passages that formed the chief glory of the editio princeps have been expunged the whole character of the style corrected without being thereby improved just like the later editions of the Pleasures of Imagination, which were written by Akenside when he was about twenty one, and altered by him at forty to the exclusion or destruction of many most splendida vitia , by which process the poem, in our humble opinion, was shorn of its brightest beams, and suffered disastrous twilight and eclipse perplexing critics.

Now, seeing that such pastimes are in number almost infinite, and infinite the varieties of human character, pray what is there at all surprising in your being madly fond of shooting and your brother Tom just as foolish about fishing and cousin Jack perfectly insane on fox hunting while the old gentleman your father, in spite of wind and weather, perennial gout, and annual apoplexy, goes a coursing of the white hipped hare on the bleak Yorkshire wolds and uncle Ben, as if just escaped from Bedlam or St Luke's with Dr Haslam at his heels, or with a few hundred yards' start of Dr Warburton, is seen galloping, in a Welsh wig and strange apparel, in the rear of a pack of Lilliputian beagles, all barking as if they were as mad as their master, supposed to be in chase of an invisible animal that keeps eternally doubling in field and forest "still hoped for, never seen," and well christened by the name of Escape?

Phrenology sets the question for ever at rest... Continue reading book >>


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