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Lavengro The Scholar - The Gypsy - The Priest, Vol. 1 (of 2)   By: (1803-1881)

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Lavengro: The Scholar - The Gypsy - The Priest, Vol. 1 (of 2) by George Henry Borrow is a captivating and thought-provoking literary work that delves into the life of its enigmatic protagonist, Lavengro. Borrow's masterful storytelling and vivid descriptions create a rich tapestry of 19th-century Europe, where a myriad of cultures and traditions merge.

The story follows Lavengro, a scholar with a thirst for knowledge, as he traverses through various encounters and experiences. Borrow brilliantly explores Lavengro's encounters with gypsies, priests, and scholars, each encounter providing a unique insight into the protagonist's complex character. The book unfolds like a collection of episodic tales, weaving together themes of love, wanderlust, spirituality, and cultural identity.

What sets Lavengro apart is Borrow's skillful portrayal of Lavengro's internal struggle, beautifully capturing the conflicts between his thirst for knowledge and his desire for freedom. The narrative unfolds with a compelling blend of adventure, introspection, and philosophical musings, making it a delightful read for anyone interested in introspective character studies.

Borrow's writing style is exceptional, showcasing his deep knowledge of diverse languages and cultures. His ability to transport readers to different settings, from the enchanting lanes of London to the wild open roads of rural England, is truly commendable. Borrow's vivid descriptions allow the reader to immerse themselves fully into the story, painting an intricate picture of each scene and character.

Moreover, Lavengro offers a fascinating exploration of the intricate web of cultures that shape European society. Borrow's portrayal of gypsy culture, in particular, is both sensitive and nuanced, presenting readers with a deeper understanding and appreciation for this oft-misunderstood community. Through Lavengro's interactions with various individuals, Borrow examines themes of social class, prejudice, and the struggle for acceptance.

However, the novel's segmented structure may be a hindrance for some readers, as it lacks a conventional overarching plot. Instead, Borrow chooses to focus on character development and cultural exploration, making the narrative feel episodic at times. While this approach may deter readers seeking a traditional linear story, those who appreciate character-driven narratives will find immense pleasure in witnessing Lavengro's growth and self-discovery.

In conclusion, Lavengro: The Scholar - The Gypsy - The Priest, Vol. 1 (of 2) is a beautifully crafted work that skillfully explores themes of identity, culture, and the pursuit of knowledge. Borrow's evocative storytelling, coupled with his deep understanding of various cultures, creates a compelling and immersive reading experience. Whether you are a lover of insightful character studies or have an interest in 19th-century Europe, this book is sure to leave an indelible mark on your literary repertoire.

First Page:

LAVENGRO The Scholar The Gypsy The Priest






{Portrait of George Borrow, painted by H. W. Phillips, engraved by W. Hall: p0.jpg}


There have been many Romany Ryes, or "Gypsy Gentlemen," as Gypsies designate those who, though not of their race, yet have loved that race, and have mastered the Romany tongue. The first is one of the oddest Andrew Boorde ( c. 1490 1549). Carthusian, traveller, physician, and, perhaps, the original Merry Andrew, he got into trouble over certain delinquencies, and died a prisoner in the Fleet gaol. In 1542 he was writing his Fyrst Boke of the Introduction of Knowledge , and had come to "the xxxviii. chapiter," which "treateth of Egypt, and of theyr money and of theyr speche." He started bravely:

"Egipt is a countrey ioyned to Jury, The countrey is plentyfull of wine, corne and hony.

"There be many great wyldernes, in the which be many great wylde beastes. In ye which wildernis liuid many holy fathers, as it apperith in vitas patrum. The people "

But here, I fancy, he suddenly broke off; what did he know of the Egyptian people? Greece was the nearest he had ever been to Egypt... Continue reading book >>

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