Letters on Literature by Andrew Lang

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Purchase of this book includes free trial access to www.million-books.com where you can read more than a million books for free. This is an OCR edition with typos. Excerpt from book: FIELDING, To Mrs. Goodhart, in the Upper Mississippi Valley. Dear Madam,—Many thanks for the New York newspaper you have kindly sent me, with the statistics of book-buying in the Upper Mississippi Valley. Those are interesting particulars which tell one so much about the taste of a community. So the Rev. E. P. Roe is your favourite novelist there ; a thousand of his books are sold for every two copies of the works of Henry Fielding ? This appears to me to speak but oddly for taste in the Upper Mississippi Valley. On Mr. Roe's works I have -no criticismto pass, for I have not read them carefully. But I do think your neighbours lose a great deal by neglecting Henry Fielding. You will tell me he is coarse (which I cannot deny); you will remind me of what Dr. Johnson said, rebuking Miss Hannah More. ' I never saw Johnson really angry with me but once,' writes that sainted maiden lady. ' I alluded to some witty passage in " Tom Jones." ' He replied : ' I am shocked to hear you quote from so vicious a book. I am sorry to hear you have read it; a confession which no modest lady should ever make.' You remind me of this, and that Johnson was no prude, and that his age was tolerant. You add that the literary taste of the Upper Mississippi Valley is much more pure than the waters of her majestic river, and that you onjy wish you knew who the two culprits were that bought books of Fielding's. Ah, madam, how shall I answer you ? Remember that if you have Johnson on your 3ide, on mine I have Miss More herself, a character purer than ' the consecrated snow that lies on Dian's lap.' Again, we cannot believe Johnson was fair to Fielding, who had made his friend, the author of ' Pamela,' very uncomfortable by his jests. Johnson owned that he read all ' Amelia ' at one sitting....
 

About Andrew Lang

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Andrew Lang (1844 – 1912) was a collector of fairy tales and folklore from around the world. Between 1889 and 1910 he published a dozen books known as the coloured fairy books. He was also a historian and wrote hundreds of essays and short-stories. He died at age 68. Varla Ventura is the author of The Book of the Bizarre and Beyond Bizarre, and a lover of all things strange, freaky, and terrifying. She is the curator of the Weiser Magical Creatures and Paranormal Parlor series of e-books. Visit her at varlaventura.wordpress.com.
 
Published May 12, 2012 by Facsimile: Originally Published in. 116 pages
Genres: History, Literature & Fiction, Biographies & Memoirs, Education & Reference. Non-fiction

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