lördag 3 december 2016

Lördag med Gutenberg

Romantic Novel
Santiago Rusiñol Prats - 1894

Böcker, brasa och te, vad mer kan man begära? Så det ser jag till att jag har, och som vanligt på lördagmornar är det Gutenberg som står för böckerna. Det är då jag ser efter vilka nya, det vill säga gamla, böcker som tillkommit under veckan. Den här veckan var det många som intresserade mig — så många att jag inte kommer att hinna läsa, eller ens kika på dem före nästa lördag. Än mindre hinner jag skriva om dem alla — vilket kanske ni ska vara tacksamma för.
Som att jag inte tänker redogöra i detalj för vad som står i "Last Words on Evolution" , av Ernst Haeckel, Translated by Joseph McCabe — jag kommer inte ens att läsa boken, fast den är tunn, men de få bilderna som finns har jag beskådat.

"Shakspeare and His Times, Including the Biography of the Poet; criticisms on his genius and writings; a new chronology of his plays; a disquisition on the on the object of his sonnets; and a history of the manners, customs, and amusements,superstitions, poetry, and elegant literature of his age", av Nathan Drake från 1817, i fyra band, verkar att vara lika mastig som titeln.
Jag går raskt vidare till "Trip to the West and Texas, comprising a journey of eight thousand miles, through New-York, Michigan, Illinois, Missouri, Louisiana and Texas, in the autumn and winter of 1834-5", av A. A. Parker. Det är alltid roligt att läsa om platser man besökt. I Texas har jag visserligen bara vara en vecka, men skildringen börjar i New England, och där har jag varit desto mer.
In September, 1834, I left Exeter, New-Hampshire, for the purpose of visiting the Western States and Texas. Although public attention had been for some time directed thither, by various published sketches and frequent emigration, yet so little was definitely known, that I was induced to travel through these sections of the country to learn their actual situation and condition. My object was not to visit the settled regions of the country, a full knowledge of which may be obtained from books, but to see some portion of the unknown and unsettled regions of the West and the South. My particular attention was, therefore, directed to Michigan, Illinois, Missouri, Louisiana and Texas.
But so rapidly are some portions of this new country settling; so constantly are new villages springing up in the wilderness; and so continually are improvements making, that history must continue to lag behind the reality. To keep any thing like an even pace with population, and the public constantly informed of the actual condition of the country, would require, like an almanac, an annual revision and publication of its history.
I took passage on board the stage, through Brattleborough and Bennington, to Albany. About twelve years ago, I travelled over this route, and was gratified to find so many improvements in the villages, farms, and especially in the stage road, since I had travelled it before. In passing through Vermont, I found a new road had been made to avoid the high hills over which it formerly passed, so that now, I believe this is the easiest and safest route across the Green Mountains.
Den resan kommer jag att återvända till, tyvärr är den inte illustrerad, men det är "Texas Flowers in Natural Colors", av Eula Whitehouse. Det här ar en andraupplaga från 1948, den första kom 1936. Författaren har själv illustrerat boken, jag gillar akvarellerna även om jag får tillstå att hon nog var bättre botanist än illustratör.
 Floror, fågelböcker och andra uppslagsverk med olika djur, från platser som man inte känner så väl, är en tillgång när man läser böcker, inte minst skönlitteratur, från dessa okända platser. Jag blir alltid så nyfiken på vad de egentligen talar om i dessa böcker — för att inte tala om översättningar, som förefaller att bara hugga ett namn ur luften.

 Blå näckros har jag aldrig hört talas om, än mindre sett  nu ser den förstås inte så värst blå ut, på bilden. Någon som sett en och kan berätta hur blå de är?
Blue Water-Lily (Nymphaea elegans) is a common water-lily along the coast of Texas and Mexico, particularly in the vicinity of Corpus Christi. The flowers vary from nearly white to a purplish-blue or lilac and are 3-6 in. broad. The floating leaves, about 7 in. broad, are dark purple below and nearly round; sometimes they have a few scattered teeth on the margins. The blooms last 3 days, opening about 8 o’clock in the morning and closing shortly after noon.
 Usually twining shrubs or small trees; flowers small, unisexual and perfect; sepals 6; petals 6, or absent; stamens 6-12; carpels 3-6; fruit berry-like, 1-seeded.
Moonseed Vine (Cebatha Carolina) is a vine with clusters of small red berries. It is very abundant throughout the state in woods and on fences, ranging north to Kansas and Virginia. It is also called coral-bead, margil, coral-vine, and red-berried moonseed. “Cebatha,” from the Greek, alludes to its climbing habit, while “moonseed” refers to the curved seed of the fleshy red berries which ripen in the fall and remain on the vines long after the leaves have fallen. The small white flowers bloom during the summer and fall. The leaves are quite variable, sometimes entire and sometimes distinctly 3-lobed and rarely 5-lobed, being smooth above and downy beneath.
The berries of the Indian moonseed contain an acrid poison which is used by the Chinese in catching fish, as it will temporarily stun or intoxicate the fish.

Tall Goldenrod (Solidago altissima) grows 2-8 ft. high, has rough leaves which are sharply toothed and prominently triple-nerved, and is topped by dense clusters of yellow flowers. Most of the goldenrods are widely distributed in North America; the tall goldenrod is abundant in dry soil from Maine to Nebraska and Texas.
En växt som jag bara vet alltför väl hur den ser ut, är gullriset som jag för en ojämn kamp mot.
Yes, flower bells rang right merry that day,
When there was a marriage of flowers, they say.

En som däremot var en fantastisk illustratör var Walter Crane, så är du i behov av lite romantik så läs då hans "A Flower Wedding", från 1905.
Young LAD’S LOVE had courted Miss Meadow·Sweet,
And the two soon agreed at the Altar to meet.

“Victrola” is the registered trade mark of
the Victor Talking Machine Company
designating the products of this company only
Victor Talking Machine Company
Camden, N.J., U.S.A.

Ljuvliga bilder finns också i boken "How To Get the Most Out of Your Victrola", av Victor Talking Machine Company från 1919, som väl närmast är att betrakta som ett reklamhäfte.
Period Victrolas are now obtainable in twelve of the principal types, namely: Empire, Chippendale, Louis XV, Louis XVI, Jacobean, Gothic, William and Mary, Adam, Sheraton, Chinese Chippendale, Queen Anne, Japanese Lacquer, and the Hepplewhite shown above. There are also two other variations of each type which are available, but in every case Period Victrolas are made to order only.
Den går igenom både olika kompositörer och musikstilar, hur de alla kommer tillrätta i deras "Talking Machine", som väl här borde kallas musikmaskin.
The Love Duet from Faust
The sheer ecstasy of the passion which may bless or may utterly destroy has never been put into music more clearly than it is in this exquisite duet in “Faust,” and the Victrola enables you to hear this music sung by two of the great artists of our generation.

Dance Music
The impulse to dance is spontaneous. It is a manifestation of the joy o’ life that needs some more vigorous means of expression than is provided by speech. To have to wait two weeks for a formal dancing party is to lose that fine edge of impulse, and that is why the Victrola renders an otherwise unobtainable service to the dancers.
No need to rent a hall, engage an orchestra and send out invitations. You may dance when the inspiration seizes you. You may dance the kind of dances that the mood of the moment may suggest for as long a time or as short a time as you may wish.
And—here as in every other branch of musical art, the Victrola offers you the best.
Beside the dancers themselves, there are two other vital factors to be considered—the music and the floor—and you know that your music is right when it is provided by the Victrola. If you happen to live in a fairly large town it is easy enough, of course, to engage an orchestra (at considerable expense and for stated times) which will furnish entirely satisfactory music; but—the Victrola? It gives you the best dance music by the most accomplished orchestras and bands and, when the music is good enough, people can and will dance on a rubber mat or in a city street.
Three or four friends call of a winter evening—nothing simpler than to roll back the rugs and dance—and certainly nothing more beneficial from the mental or physical viewpoints.
Then, too, you may dance to the music of the same orchestra as you would if you lived in the gayest of metropolitan cities.
In these vital tasks of acquiring a broader view of human 
possibilities the common school must have a large part. 
I urge that teachers and other school officers increase 
materially the time and attention devoted to instruction 
bearing directly on the problems of community and 
national life.
                                                            Woodrow Wilson.
Så slutar jag med en högtstående bok från 1918, som är avsedd att fostra de unga till goda patriotiska medborgare: Our Home and Personal Duty, av Jane Eayre Fryer. Den är indelad i olika avdelningar, som "Stories Teaching Thoroughness, Honesty, Respect, Patriotism, Kindness to Animals". Så avslutas varje avdelning på det där förfärligt pedagogiska sättet som läroböcker (och en del bloggar) har för vana för att kolla att läsaren rätt uppfattat innehållet.


If a task is once begun
Never leave it till it’s done;
Be the labor great or small
Do it well, or not at all.
Phœbe Cary.
Man lär sig hur rättrådig Abe var redan som pojke  han som inte kunde uttala en lögn, och får läsa om Max Green:

This is the story of a boy who ruined a good book. A good book is always a good friend.
He did not mean to—oh, no! But what of that—he did it, as you may read.
His name was Max Green. One day Max borrowed a book from Tom Brown, a fine new book with a picture of a submarine on the cover. Tom had just received it as a birthday present from his uncle.
That night Max sat down in a corner to read it. Soon he came to the place where the submarine was getting ready to fire a torpedo.
“Squeak!” went the book, as Max gave it a twist in his excitement. He did not hear the sound; he only saw the torpedo skimming through the water.
“Crack!” went the book, as Max gave it a heavier twist. He did not notice that he was bending the covers farther back. He only knew that the torpedo was striking the bow of a big man-of-war.
“Rip!” went the book down the middle, as Max gave it a harder twist with his hand.
But Max read right on, for just then the man-of-war lurched over on its side as if it was getting ready to sink.
In his excitement Max forgot all about what he was doing and twisted and bent the book back, cover to cover.
“Stop—quick—oh! oh! It hurts! You have broken my back—broken my back! Oh!—oh!” cried the book.
Suddenly Max woke up and saw what he had done—but it was too late. He had broken the glue and stitches apart and the covers hung limp.
Just then his mother came in.
“Look, mother—see what I have done to Tom Brown’s book,” he confessed. “I am so sorry. It is such a good book. Can’t we glue it together again?”
“No,” said his mother, “it is ruined. Glue may help, but it will never be the same book.”
“Oh, I am so sorry!” said Max.
“Yes, Max, but being sorry will not make this book as good as it was when you borrowed it.”
“I will make it right with Tom, mother. I will take my birthday money to buy him a new one.”
“That is the right thing to do, Max,” answered his mother.

How is a good book a good friend?
Suppose it had been his own book that Max ruined, would he have been treating it fairly?
If you were a book, how would you want to be treated?
Do you know what holds a book together? Tell what you know about the way a book is made.
Why should we be so careful of books?

Man får lära sig varifrån kläder, skor, bröd och andra vardagsvaror, kommer ifrån. Och jag gillar att man uppmanar pojkar att inte plundra fågelbon  det var ju länge en accepterad sysselsättning.

Don’t rob the birds of their eggs, boys,
’Tis cruel and heartless and wrong;
And remember, by breaking an egg, boys,
We may lose a bird with a song.

Tell the story of this picture.

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