Mary's Library

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

What I'm Reading

At the moment I’m reading eight books, which for me is modest. I routinely juggle 15 or 20 books at a time. I’ll post the rest of the titles later, but for now here are four of them.

Victorian London: The Life of a City, 1840-1870 (2005) by Liza Picard. Judy mentioned the book favorably in my not-trollope group and her advice is invaluable. The book is excellent.

The Moral Trollope (1971) by Ruth apRoberts. Acquired on Interlibrary Loan (ILL.) it’s tough sledding so far, with all those Latin terms and references to Cicero . . .

The History of England by Thomas Babington Macaulay, published between 1848 and 1855. I’m only dipping into this; I’m not reading all 5 volumes.

I Promessi Sposi by Alessandro Manzoni, written in 1825-26 but set in the 17th century. Believe it or not, I first read this book when I was about 8 years old. (I knew you wouldn’t believe it.)


At 11:01 AM PDT , Anonymous Fay said...

Mary, I had to laugh about Cicero, since he's my author of choice just now (_Defence Speeches). It's just good ole courtroom drama.

He does keep making references to his client's "duty," and a little light went on. Is this where the Victorians got all that? You know all those public school boys, and a few girls at home, reading Latin and Greek? I always thought the duty business was a Christian thing, but it's more likely a Classical thing. How about that? I just ordered a pile of books about the Victorians and their study of Classical Greek and Rome-- not a favorite critical topic these days, not sexual enough, or political enough. But sounds good to me. _Moral Trollope_ is lying about here somewhere. I'll have to check that out too.


At 2:03 PM PDT , Blogger Mary said...

apRoberts in _The Moral Trollope_ talks about duty and honor and "turpe," which I don't know how to translate into English. It seems Trollope was very much under the spell of Cicero.

I'll be interested in hearing about the books you are planning to read about the influence of all that Classical schooling on the Victorians. Bound to be significant I think.


At 11:36 AM PDT , Blogger Lisa Guidarini said...

I've been so far down from my average books-read-simultaneously and am very discouraged by same! Right now I'm reading... (please hold whilst I calculate...)... oh dear only three, but that will change I assure you. I finished three over the weekend, two I actually began and finished in less than a day, but still my average is just so far down. But anyway, Victorian London is one I read and enjoyed earlier this year. Nearly lost my train of thought!!


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