The joys, the passion and the hallmarks of readers and reading II

I was sharing you a quote or two with you from each section of a phenomenal book I presented myself this particular Bde Day – a book dealing with readers, and reading and books. For me, there could have been no better present and it was most fitting that it came from my own hands…

However, I had given you a quote from the first eight sections of the book, and you can find them here: 

Here I will continue from the remaining sections, maybe giving you an additional quote, if it is so required. I begin with the ultimate accolade, and then come to a truth of life.

‘A History of Its Own’

Books’ lives

“In all candour, I must say that she approached closely to the ideals of of a book – a sixteenmo, if you please, fair to look upon, of clear, clean type, well ordered and well edited, amply margined, neatly bound.”

Eugene Field,“The Love Affairs of a Bibliomaniac” (1896)

And this too,

“Our books change when they have been borrowed, like our friends when they have been married.”

Andrew Lang, “The Library” (1881)

‘It Was Amazing Really Where The Word Librarian Would Get You’ 

“We enjoy reading books that belong to us much more than if they are borrowed. A borrowed book is like a guest in the house; it must be treated with punctiliousness, with a certain, considerate, formality. You must see to it that it sustains no damage; it must not suffer while under your roof. You cannot leave it carelessly, you cannot mark it, you cannot, turn down the pages, you cannot use it familiarly. And then, some day, although this is seldom done, you really ought to return it.”

William Lyon Phelps, “On Books” (1933) 

‘An Early Taste For Reading’

“There is perhaps nothing that has a greater tendency to decide favourably or unfavourably with respect to a man’s future intellect than the question whether or not he be impressed with an early taste for reading.”

William Goodwin, “On an early taste for reading” (1797)

“You are what you read, and for a long while, I was Rupert the Bear.”

John Furnival, “I, Rupert Schweik” (1994)

‘The Books That You Read Were All I Loved You For’

“Except some professed scholars, I have often observed that women in general read much more than men; but for want of a plan, a method, a fixed object, their reading is of little benefit to themselves, or others.”

Edward Gibbon, “The Autobiography of Edward Gibbon” (1796)

(ha ha, sorry! Well Gibbon said it… and I cannot resist one more)

“It has never been explained to my satisfaction why women, as a class, are the enemies of books, and are particularly hostile to bibliomaniacs.”

Eugene Field,“The Love Affairs of a Bibliomaniac” (1896)

 (I wonder that too….. I wonder that a lot)

‘Tempted in so subtle a shape’

“Never a poor fellow was tempted in so subtle a shape by Beelzebub as I am. Some he hath assailed as a roaring lion, for others he baits with wine women or wealth but for me there is a book hung in every booksellers’ shop.”

Robert Southey, letter to Charles Danvers, 6th Nov, 1800.

And finally,

‘An Intense Grievance’

“There are those to whom the having nothing to read is an intense grievance. They instinctively look around for a book wherever they ho, and they are often bitterly disappointed. It is a predicament indeed to be landed on a visit where the house is destitute of books, and where no library is near. I have heard of a reader so insatiable that the tried to get squints into odd volumes even during the penitential process of morning calls. This is a length to which few would go, but I am with the same writer when he says that he would rather read a list of hotels or a week-old advertisement sheet than do with reading at all.”

W. Robertson Nicoll, “A Bookman’s Letters” (1913)

“I learned, first hand, about the void that all devoted readers dread – the void that yawns past the last page of whatever good book we’re currently reading.”

Maureen Corrigan, “Leave Me Alone: I’m Reading” (2005)

(I get this feeling a lot….)

“But how can I live without my books? I really seem to be mighty crippled and only half myself.”

Balthazar Bonifacius Rhodyimus (1656), quoted in J.Baldwin, “The Book Lover: A Guide to the Best Reading” (1893)

(Just like me…..)

The end…..


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