Diary of a Country Parson, 1758-1802
The diaries of Parson James Woodforde (1740-1803) have been a constant source of delight and amusement of thousands of readers since their first ... Show synopsis The diaries of Parson James Woodforde (1740-1803) have been a constant source of delight and amusement of thousands of readers since their first publication in a five-volume selection in the 1920s. The Norfolk parson's detailed and acute observations of English country life have ensured him a major place among the country classics of English literature. Ronald Blythe calls Woodforde "one of the most unforgettable characters of English literature." This new edition of selections from the diaries brings an entirely new dimension to the writings of this quintessentially English clergyman. As well as reprinting the most entertaining and amusing passages, this beautiful, oversized volume is lavishly illustrated with reproductions of paintings, watercolors, and engravings by such atritst as Constable, Cotman, and Crome, who were contemporaries of Parson Woodforde. There are also illustrations of portraits and documents relating to the Woodforde family and their friends as well as drawings of the church, houses, and landscapes the parson knew and decorations representing the country and culinary delights he so loved. Although the years covered by the diaries saw many momentous international events--the American and French revolutions, for example--Parson Woodforde's central concern was with the details and very distinct flavors of English village life. His gift for capturing those textures will undoubtedly enthrall a new generation of readers.