Arthur Quiller-Couch From a Cornish Window

ISBN 13: 9781516841714

From a Cornish Window

 
9781516841714: From a Cornish Window

From the preface: From a Cornish Window first appeared between cloth covers some six or seven years ago. I see that its Dedication bears the date, April 3rd, 1906. But parts of it were written years before in the old Pall Mall Magazine, under the editorship of Lord Frederic Hamilton (who invented its title for me), and a few fragments date back almost to undergraduate days. The book, in short, is desultory to the last degree, and discourses in varying moods on a variety of topics. Yet, turning the pages again, I find them curiously and somewhat alarmingly consistent—consistent not only in themselves, but with their surviving author as he sits here to-day, using the same pen-holder which he bought for twopence in 1886, and gazing out of the same window, soon to be exchanged for another with a view more academic: and 'alarmingly consistent' because (as Emerson has very justly observed) a foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds. To persevere in one fixed outlook upon life may be evidence of arrested capacity to grow, while on the other hand mere flightiness is a sure sign that the mind has not even arrived at man's estate. The best plan seems to be to care not a farthing for consistency or inconsistency, but to keep the eye turned outwards, and to keep it fresh by taking on new interests (however trivial), and reading new books, but still comparing them with the old. I think we ought to be especially careful to read new poetry as we get on in life, if only as a discipline— as men with increasing waists practice calisthenics—because poetry is always trying to reach beyond the phenomena of life, and because these are all the while, if imperceptibly, narrowing us within the round of daily habit.

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Book Description:

Sir Arthur Quiller-Couch (1863-1944), who often published under the pen-name of 'Q', was one of the giants of early twentieth-century literature and literary criticism. A novelist and poet who was also a Professor of English, he helped to form the literary tastes of generations of literary students and scholars who came after him.

About the Author:

Sir Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch (21 November 1863 – 12 May 1944) was a British writer who published using the pseudonym Q. Although a prolific novelist, he is remembered mainly for the monumental publication The Oxford Book Of English Verse 1250–1900 (later extended to 1918) and for his literary criticism.

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