Charlotte Brontë: A Fiery Heart by Claire Harman

My recent discovery of the Brontë sisters through their poetry made me want to discover more.  Before I read their novels, however, I wanted to learn who they were that I might better appreciate their work, as is my modus operandi when dealing with most authors before my own time, and especially for those whose works … Continue reading Charlotte Brontë: A Fiery Heart by Claire Harman

“The Adventure of the Golden Pince-Nez” by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

In our modern century, the first thing a new reader might understandably ask is, "What's a pince-nez?"  Eyeglasses, my dears.  It translates from French to "pinch-nose," so we're referring to the type with the little oblong pieces that rest at either side of the bridge of one's nose.  So now that we understand that, let's … Continue reading “The Adventure of the Golden Pince-Nez” by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

To America: Personal Reflections of an Historian by Stephen E. Ambrose

“Extremes to the right and to the left of any political dispute are always wrong.” ― Dwight D. Eisenhower No one can ever truly be unbiased.  It goes against everything that makes us human.  But objectivity is a skill that can be learned and applied.  It's one of the best assets in the toolbox of … Continue reading To America: Personal Reflections of an Historian by Stephen E. Ambrose

The Once and Future Liberal: After Identity Politics by Mark Lilla

The United States currently exists in a state of cold civil war.  I'm not the first person to say that, and until it turns into a shooting war, I won't be the last.  We seemingly can't talk to one another without getting bent out of shape over the tiniest of details.  How did we get … Continue reading The Once and Future Liberal: After Identity Politics by Mark Lilla

The Song of the Battle of Hastings (Carmen de Hastingae Proelio) by Guy of Amiens, retold and illustrated by Mike Oliver

I'm on vacation, visiting family, and my Dad starts talking up a bluestreak about all things Middle Ages that he doesn't know in an effort to sound impressive.  To know my father is to know that history for him begins in 1776, so it's amusing and sometimes frustrating when he tries to enlighten me about … Continue reading The Song of the Battle of Hastings (Carmen de Hastingae Proelio) by Guy of Amiens, retold and illustrated by Mike Oliver

“The Adventure of the Three Students” by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

In order to protect a prominent university from scandal, Watson is hiding the details of this case, beyond telling us that their client, a Mr. Hilton Soames, is a tutor and lecturer at St. Luke's College in said university town where he and Holmes find themselves.  A forthcoming exam involving Greek translation has caused one … Continue reading “The Adventure of the Three Students” by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Sappho: A New Rendering by Sappho, Henry de Vere Stacpoole (translation)

There is no place for grief in a house which serves the Muse. After working my way through more disturbing topics, I've come to find that a little poetry serves me well as a palette cleanser, especially when most of the lines are geared towards love. Most of what is believed of Sappho in popular … Continue reading Sappho: A New Rendering by Sappho, Henry de Vere Stacpoole (translation)