Praeterita: Outlines of Scenes and Thoughts, Perhaps Worthy of Memory in My Past Life
Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub
As a memoir elevated to the level of fine art, John Ruskin’s Praeterita stands alongside The Education of Henry Adams and the confessions of Augustine, Rousseau, and Tolstoy. A luminous account of his childhood and youth, Praeterita is the last major work of the revolutionary nineteenth-century critic.
Written in the lucid intervals between the bouts of dementia that haunted his final years, Praeterita tells the story of Ruskin’s early life—the formation of his taste and intellect through education, travels in Europe, and encounters with great works of art and artists. In abandoning the traditional linear mode of autobiography, Ruskin opened up the form and was an important influence on Proust. He also provided a vivid, detailed portrait of pre-Victorian and Victorian England that is as indispensable an account of its era as Samuel Pepys’s diary is of England in the seventeenth century.
This edition of Praeterita is accompanied by Dilecta, Ruskin’s own selection from his letters, diaries, and other writings. In these more private writings we get a fascinating glimpse of genius as it flickers in and out of madness. Together these two works illuminate the life and mind of a towering intellect who left an extraordinary mark on the history of aesthetics and culture, and on the very course of autobiography. With a new Introduction by Tim Hilton
(Book Jacket Status: Jacketed)
journey, into Wales. But they desired me, on my way there, to stop at Leamington, and show myself to its dominant physician, Dr Jephson – called a quack by all the Faculty, yet of whom they had heard favourably from wise friends. Jephson was no quack; but a man of the highest general power, and keenest medical instincts. He had risen, by stubborn industry and acute observation, from an apothecary’s boy to be the first physician in Leamington; and was the first true physician I ever knew – nor
scarlet and gold, and that would dance, tied to the leg of a chair. I must have been greatly impressed, for I remember well the look of the two figures, as my aunt herself exhibited their virtues. My mother was obliged to accept them; but afterwards quietly told me it was not right that I should have them; and I never saw them again. 14. Nor did I painfully wish, what I was never permitted for an instant to hope, or even imagine, the possession of such things as one saw in toy-shops. I had a
when they had passed through trial; my own Joanie’s face owes the calm of its radiance to days of no ordinary sorrow – even before she came, when my father had been laid to his rest under Croydon hills, to keep her faithful watch by my mother’s side, while I was seeking selfish happiness far away in work which to-day has come to nought. What I have myself since owed to her, – life certainly, and more than life, for many and many a year, – was meant to have been told long since, had I been able to
always beside him. He used to tell us he set her down upon it when he brought her home to the manse.” 3 It was his Latin grammar, the best ever composed, which my Camberwell tutor threw aside, as above told, for a “Scotch thing.” 4 “Rushed at the cart,” his words. Ending with his deep “Heigh dear,” sigh. “Sunt lacrymæ rerum.” 5 It might have been “irregular,” in ground just cut up for building leases, in South Lambeth; wild, yet as regular as a disciplined army, had it been the pines of Uri.
Mount Albis. 39. In 950 Bertha had to mourn the death of her son-in-law Lothaire, and the imprisonment of her daughter Adelaide on the Lake of Garda. But Otho the Great, of Germany, avenged Lothaire, drove Berenger out of Italy, and himself married Adelaide, reinstating Conrad of Burgundy on the throne of Burgundy and Switzerland: and then Bertha, strong at once under the protection of the king her son, and the emperor her son-in-law, and with her mother beside her, Abbess of the Convent des