Close
Close

Search Results

Advanced Search

1 to 15 of 72 results

Sort by:

Filter by:

Contributors

Article Types

Authors

Subjects

Living for ever

Mary Renault, 18 September 1980

The Cult of the Immortal 
by Ange-Pierre Leca.
Souvenir, 304 pp., £8.95, July 1980, 0 285 62393 1
Show More
Show More
... equal lustre, nor omitting ceremonies of bravery in the infamy of his nature.’ Thus the good Sir Thomas Browne, meditating on urns, and on mankind’s dealings with the last mystery. Sumerian Gilgamesh journeyed to the Garden of the Sun at the world’s end to find the herb of eternal youth; but when he bent to drink at a fountain, a serpent stole ...

The German Ocean

D.J. Enright: Suffolk Blues, 17 September 1998

The Rings of Saturn 
by W.G. Sebald, translated by Michael Hulse.
Harvill, 296 pp., £15.99, June 1998, 1 86046 398 3
Show More
Show More
... of Modern German Literature at the University of East Anglia, had read that the skull of Sir Thomas Browne, antiquary, lover of mysteries, connoisseur of odds and ends, was kept in the museum of that same hospital. He failed to find it, or the museum, and it turned out that the skull had subsequently been buried with the rest of ...

They rudely stare about

Tobias Gregory: Thomas Browne, 4 July 2013

‘Religio Medici’ and ‘Urne-Buriall’ 
by Thomas Browne, edited by Stephen Greenblatt and Ramie Targoff.
NYRB, 170 pp., £7.99, September 2012, 978 1 59017 488 3
Show More
Show More
... or theologians, but one of the most enduringly popular was written in 1635 by a physician, Thomas Browne. Browne was thirty years old. He had lately returned to England after several years studying medicine on the Continent, and was serving a medical apprenticeship in Halifax. There, in his spare time, he ...

Is it a crime?

P.N. Furbank, 6 June 1985

Peterley Harvest: The Private Diary of David Peterley 
edited by Michael Holroyd.
Secker, 286 pp., £8.95, April 1985, 0 436 36715 7
Show More
Show More
... or even Vermeer-forging, sense. Some gentlemanly code of ethics enfolds the activities of Thomas Wise and his fellows. As for purely literary, as opposed to bibliographical forgery, it receives no censure at all. Indeed, it receives rather high esteem. James Crossley, the distinguished 19th-century antiquarian and bibliographer, plumed himself on ...

Surplusage!

Elizabeth Prettejohn: Walter Pater, 6 February 2020

The Collected Works of Walter Pater, Vol. III: Imaginary Portraits 
edited by Lene Østermark-Johansen.
Oxford, 359 pp., £115, January 2019, 978 0 19 882343 8
Show More
The Collected Works of Walter Pater, Vol. IV: Gaston de Latour 
edited by Gerald Monsman.
Oxford, 399 pp., £115, January 2019, 978 0 19 881616 4
Show More
Walter Pater: Selected Essays 
edited by Alex Wong.
Carcanet, 445 pp., £18.99, September 2018, 978 1 78410 626 3
Show More
Show More
... Pascal, Rossetti and Mérimée, and includes some distinctly obscure pieces, such as an essay on Thomas Browne which is a small-scale masterpiece.The conventional image of Pater as a narrow aesthete or fastidious connoisseur is contradicted by these volumes. What emerges instead is a man of formidable learning and intellectual scope, a polyglot in ...

From bad to worse

Raymond Fancher, 8 March 1990

Faces of Degeneration: A European Disorder, c.1848-c.1918 
by Daniel Pick.
Cambridge, 275 pp., £27.50, October 1989, 0 521 36021 8
Show More
Health, Race and German Politics between National Unification and Nazism 1870-1945 
by Paul Weindling.
Cambridge, 641 pp., £55, October 1989, 0 521 36381 0
Show More
Show More
... More than three centuries ago. Sir Thomas Browne noted ‘the humour of many heads to extol the days of their forefathers, and declaim against the wickedness of times present’. He added that these nostalgic declaimers seem always to have been present, and indeed one can find notable examples of them from virtually all periods of human history ...

At Norwich Castle Museum

Alice Spawls: ‘The Paston Treasure’, 13 September 2018

... Cairo. He built up a magnificent collection, a ‘world of curiosityes’ according to his cousin Thomas Knyvett, which we know about from inventories and wills, and also from the strange, large painting called The Paston Treasure. Its date and artist are unknown but it was almost certainly painted around the time of William’s death in 1663 and commissioned ...

What We Are Last

Rosemary Hill: Old Age, 21 October 2010

Crazy Age: Thoughts on Being Old 
by Jane Miller.
Virago, 247 pp., £14.99, September 2010, 978 1 84408 649 8
Show More
Show More
... an appurtenance unto life’ have not grasped the fact that sickness is as normal as health, Thomas Browne wrote in Religio Medici. Given ‘the thousand doors that lead to death’, he concluded grimly, we should be thankful ‘that we can die but once’. In old age even the strongest constitutions come to realise how little difference three and a ...

No High Heels in Paradise

Keith Thomas: John Evelyn’s Elysium Britannicum, 19 July 2001

Elysium Britannicum, or the Royal Gardens 
by John Evelyn, edited by John Ingram.
Pennsylvania, 492 pp., £49, December 2000, 0 8122 3536 3
Show More
Show More
... though he also draws from English authors, like John Parkinson, John Rea and Sir Thomas Hanmer. He describes ‘coronary gardens’ (to produce garlands and wreaths) and ‘philosophico-medical gardens’ (yielding simples and adorned with effigies ‘of the most skillfull & illustrious Botanists, Physitians and Philosophers’). His ...

An English Vice

Bernard Bergonzi, 21 February 1985

The Turning Key: Autobiography and the Subjective Impulse since 1800 
by Jerome Hamilton Buckley.
Harvard, 191 pp., £12.75, April 1984, 0 674 91330 2
Show More
The Art of Autobiography in 19th and 20th-Century England 
by A.O.J. Cockshut.
Yale, 222 pp., £10.95, September 1984, 0 300 03235 8
Show More
Show More
... glance to St Augustine and 17th-century writers of spiritual self-examination like Bunyan and Sir Thomas Browne, Buckley focuses on the Romantic emergence of what he calls the ‘subjective impulse’, with Rousseau and Wordsworth as the founders of autobiography as we know it, where the interest is in the exploration of the self for its own sake, and ...

Against Whales

Paul Keegan, 20 July 1995

The Moon by Whale Light 
by Diane Ackerman.
Phoenix, 260 pp., £6.99, May 1994, 1 85799 087 0
Show More
The Last Panda 
by George Schaller.
Chicago, 292 pp., $13.95, May 1993, 0 226 73629 6
Show More
The Great Ape Project 
edited by Paola Cavalieri and Peter Singer.
Fourth Estate, 312 pp., £9.99, June 1993, 1 85702 126 6
Show More
Show More
... For Sir Thomas Browne it was a commonplace that ‘the number of the dead long exceedeth all that shall live.’ But this is no longer necessarily true, as has been pointed out in these pages before now: there may be more people living now than all the people who have ever died. With over 5.4 billion of us alive today, on course to become 8 ...

They were less depressed in the Middle Ages

John Bossy: Suicide, 11 November 1999

Marx on Suicide 
edited by Eric Plaut and Kevin Anderson, translated by Gabrielle Edgcomb.
Northwestern, 152 pp., £11.20, May 1999, 0 8101 1632 4
Show More
Suicide in the Middle Ages, Vol I: The Violent Against Themselves 
by Alexander Murray.
Oxford, 510 pp., £30, January 1999, 0 19 820539 2
Show More
A History of Suicide: Voluntary Death in Western Culture 
by Georges Minois, translated by Lydia Cochrane.
Johns Hopkins, 420 pp., £30, December 1998, 0 8018 5919 0
Show More
Show More
... a line on it. The line was to defend suicides against the customary condemnation by claiming, like Thomas Hood in ‘The Bridge of Sighs’, that their despair was the effect of a general lack of Christian charity in the field of social relationships. He illustrated this by invoking the oppressive use of parental or paternal authority, particularly against ...

Admirable Urquhart

Denton Fox, 20 September 1984

Sir Thomas Urquhart: The Jewel 
edited by R.D.S. Jack and R.J. Lyall.
Scottish Academic Press, 252 pp., £8.75, April 1984, 0 7073 0327 3
Show More
Show More
... Sir Thomas Urquhart, who is known today, if at all, as the 17th-century translator of part of Rabelais, must have been a most peculiar man. At a guess, he may have had to a preternatural degree that quality of mind, not unknown among modern scholars, that causes a man to believe that whatever he thinks, says or does is infallibly true and right, and that whatever he observes in the world is true and right only insofar as it coincides with what is already in his mind ...

The Method of Drifting

Ian Patterson: John Craske, 9 September 2015

Threads: The Delicate Life of John Craske 
by Julia Blackburn.
Cape, 344 pp., £25, April 2015, 978 0 224 09776 5
Show More
Show More
... than paranoid, less is left out and there are more loose ends. There’s also an explicit debt to Thomas Browne, and his inclusive curiosity. Threads made me think of Thomas Nashe and his pamphlet ‘Nashe’s Lenten Stuffe’, about Great Yarmouth and the ‘praise of the red herring’. It’s hard to write about ...

Wolfing it

Angela Carter, 23 July 1987

Honey from a Weed: Fasting and Feasting in Tuscany, Catalonia, the Cyclades and Apulia 
by Patience Gray.
Prospect, 374 pp., £17.50, November 1986, 0 907325 30 0
Show More
A Table in Provence: Classic Recipes from the South of France 
collected and illustrated by Leslie Forbes.
Webb and Bower/Joseph, 160 pp., £12.95, April 1987, 0 86350 130 3
Show More
The Joyce of Cooking: Food and Drink from James Joyce’s Dublin 
by Alison Armstrong, foreword by Anthony Burgess.
Station Hill Press, 252 pp., $18.95, December 1986, 0 930794 85 0
Show More
Show More
... of romantic awe, in a prose that will suddenly, effortlessly, fall into the very cadences of Sir Thomas Browne: ‘In Homer’s time, a King could go out to plough his land and build his bed of giant timbers.’ Her prose is usually ravishing, sometimes breathtaking. The entire section titled ‘Pasticceria and the Apulian Baroque’ is composed ...

Read anywhere with the London Review of Books app, available now from the App Store for Apple devices, Google Play for Android devices and Amazon for your Kindle Fire.

Read More

Sign up to our newsletter

For highlights from the latest issue, our archive and the blog, as well as news, events and exclusive promotions.

Newsletter Preferences