June 14, 2004

Herb Walker's Archive of Books I stumbled over these archived books while looking for information on herbs -- some titles are available elsewhere online, but others seem to be unique to this site. Anyway, here's Herb Walker's Full-text Archives and an unpredictable and eclectic collection it is, with over 220 titles. Happy exploring.
  • Hip! Hip! Hooray!
  • Suppose my favorite's this one -- Captain Grose's Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue, or a Treasury of Buckish Slang, University Wit, and Pickpocket Eloquence. Surprising how many of these are still in use.
  • DAVID'S SOW. As drunk as David's sow; a common saying, which took its rise from the following circumstance: One David Lloyd, a Welchman, who kept an alehouse at Hereford, had a living sow with six legs, which was greatly resorted to by the curious; he had also a wife much addicted to drunkenness, for which he used sometimes to give her due correction. One day David's wife having taken a cup too much, and being fearful of the consequences, turned out the sow, and lay down to sleep herself sober in the stye. A company coming in to see the sow, David ushered them into the stye, exclaiming, there is a sow for you! did any of you ever see such another? all the while supposing the sow had really been there; to which some of the company, seeing the state the woman was in, replied, it was the drunkenest sow they had ever beheld; whence the woman was ever after called David's sow. DICK. That happened in the reign of queen Dick, i. e. never: said of any absurd old story. I am as queer as Dick's hatband; that is, out of spirits, or don't know what ails me. Handsome is that handsome does: a proverb frequently cited by ugly women. PARENTHESIS. To put a man's nose into a parenthesis: to pull it, the fingers and thumb answering the hooks or crochets. A wooden parenthesis; the pillory. An iron parenthesis; a prison.
  • Assisted by Hell-Fire Dick, no less. Is that the bloke that nailed his to a crucifix and then set on fire to win beer?
  • This humble poster is awed by the assortment of tomes available. Where shall he start? Perhaps with this learned writer whose manner of writing is quite infectious, in much the same manner as certain diseases that are said to flourish far outside of Her Majesty's lands.
  • And don't forget Hume, Kenneth Graham, or the recipe for Tiger Balm -- what more can anyone expect in the way of unexpected? Almost funny the way the titles are organized, but perhaps I am easily amused. Some of them seem to have illustrations, most don't. My plans involve a hearty swig of British Werewolves followed by a refreshing dip into Lafcadio Hearn.
  • For me, this one wins on title alone: Astrology And the Ductless Glands by Augusta Foss Heindel
  • I've just started reading In Ghostly Japan - marvellous! Thanks again, beesknees!
  • A thought: Styles in naming infants come and go, but so far Lafcasio does not seem to have struck a resonant note with popular fancy, though I rather like it as half of a pair of twins -- suggest the other half could be Lefanu. Here's something else from from this to ponder/play with, PF.
  • 9.--Enk├┤ ga tsuki wo toran to suru ga gotoshi. Like monkeys trying to snatch the moon's reflection on water.