HydriotaphiaUrn Burial, One Of The Most Influential Essays In Western Literature, Is Now Available As A New Directions Pearl Hydriotaphia, Or Urn Burial, Is One Of The Pinnacles Of Renaissance Scholarship And Without Doubt One Of The Great Essays In English Literature Beginning With Observations On The Recent Discovery Of Roman Antiquities In The Form Of Burial Urns, Browne S Associative Mind Wanders To Elephant Graveyards, To Pre Christian Cremation Ceremonies, And Finally To The Idea Of Christian Burial Browne Then Explores, With A Melancholic Meditation, Man S Struggles With Mortality And The Uncertainty Of His Fate And Fame In The Living World This Edition Includes A Magisterial Discourse On Sir Thomas Browne Taken From The First Chapter Of W G Sebald S The Rings Of Saturn. This was the book that got me hooked on Sir Thomas Browne I bought it at random in 2007 in Bluewater, and sat in the food court waiting for my girlfriend to finish shopping, and I vividly remember how stunned with pleasure I was from reading the following sentence Some being of the opinion of Thales, that water was the originall of all things, thought it most equall to submit unto the principle of putrefaction, and conclude in a moist relentment.I repeated it excitedly to Hannah and her friend when they got back in fact I was babbling conclude in a moist relentment for days , but sadly it didn t seem to meet with general approval The whole essay is a masterpiece of this kind of writing baroque sentences, crafted with extreme care and absolute precision, guided by a strange and unusual mind.It s essentially a meditation on the inevitability of death, which Browne was moved to write after the discovery of some Bronze Age urns in a nearby archaeological dig I know that sounds like the kind of morbid philosophising that s been done a hundred times before and since, but it s never been done with such an overpowering air of melancholy intelligence It s never been expressed like this Browne is one of the greatest prose writers the English language has ever known even for his time and he was a contemporary of Shakespeare he stands out as exceptional For a reader like me, who adores rococo clauses full of unusual vocabulary choices, this kin
Best free online version to be found, printed and read here course, one could also simply purchase his complete workshint hintHe is, as Mr Gass has pointed out, one of the true high points of English prose And, on top of that, this text itself is fascinating and, in many ways, deeply moving in its analysis He shows us what this rude, crude and battered language was once capable of And, simply to share and wallow in beauty, there is this Oblivion is not to be hired The greater part must be content to be as though they had not been, to be found in the register of God, not in the record of man Twenty seven names make up the first story and the recorded names ever since contain not one living century The number of the dead long exceedeth all that shall live The night of time far surpasseth the day, and who knows when was the equinox Every hour adds unto that current arithmetick, which scarce stands one moment And since death must be the Lucina of life, and even Pagans6 could doubt, whether thus to live were to die since our longest sun sets at right descensions, and makes but winter arches, and therefore it cannot be long before we lie down in darkness, and have our light in ashes since the brother of death daily haunts us with dying mementoes, and time that grows old in itself, bids us hope no long duration diuturnity is a dream and folly of expectation Darkness and light divide the course of time, and oblivion shares
This little book does double duty first, it gives me a pocket sized bit of Browne to carry around should I ever need to ponder death, fame, legacy and salvation Of this I have little to say, except that it s just as good as people say stylistically, and a bit better than they say in content i.e., this is not teenage nihilism , unless you re the kind of person who assumes that if a good writer disagrees with you, s he is obviously being ironic Second, it gave me a tiny bit of Sebald at the start I ve read one and a half of Sebald s books one was nothing special the other was utter guff And here we have some guff The difference between Sebald and other writers like him, including even some I quite like I m looking at you, Marias, and your Dark Back of Time and Browne is that Sir Thomas takes an event in the real world to ponder things of immediate importance to most people here, death, fame, legacy, salvation , and also consider what previous very smart people have actually said about it A Sebald takes an event in his mind as an opportunity to ponder events that happened to himself, and also to make up stuff that could hypothetically have happened but almost certainly did not Browne attending the dissection painted by Rembrandt , which can then help him make a point that is either obvious or uninteresting to me I know this is a thing that people do right now look at this coincidence How fascinating Isn t life sad But
I am still stunned after having read this magnificent essay It begins slowly as a scholarly discussion of funeral customs of the ancients and, in its culminating chapter, is as profound as Ecclesiastes in denouncing the vanity of wanting to leave behind towering monuments to our former selves Never in all my days of reading have I seen such deep scholarship wedded to such humility and an overwhelming sense of goodness Pious spirits who passed their days in raptures of futurity, made little of this world, than the world that was before it, while they lay obscure in the chaos of pre ordination, and night of their fore beings And if any have been so happy as truly to understand Christian annihilation, ecstasies, exolution, liquefaction, transformation, the kiss of the spouse, gustation of God, and ingression into the divine shadow, they have already had an handsome anticipation of heaven the glory of the world is surely over, and the earth in ashes unto them.I cannot help but think that I will return to this work again, perhaps several times It is as profound a devotional book as any written by the saints and acknowledged holy men of previous times Happy are they whom privacy
I first heard of Browne in Borges as so often in the ending of Tl n, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius where the narrator is attempting to translate it into Spanish Borges is always interested in translation see for example his fantastic essay on translating the 1001 Nights and I made a note to look up this work which presented such challenges for rendering into Spanish The actual edition I used was James Eason s online edition Urn Burial is hugely archaic, but also amazing I am not sure where I have last seen any literary pyrotechnics to match Browne in English David Foster Wallace sometimes approaches him, but beyond that I draw blanks The book defies any simple summary as many passages are cryptic tangles and Browne says many things So I will not try, and simply present some passages that struck me He that lay in a golden Urne eminently above the Earth, was not likely to finde the quiet of these bones Many of these Urnes were broke by a vulgar discoverer in hope of inclosed treasure The ashes of Marcellus were lost above ground, upon the like account Where profit hath promp
I wonder why we modernize Shakespeare s spelling, and Marlowe s and Ben Jonson s, and the King James Bible s spelling too, but always leave Thomas Browne s intact Reading Browne as is, we hold him at a distance from ourselves he s like us in his concerns and interests, maybe, but we want the reminder of his antiquity In Urne Buriall, Browne has a 100 page long Yorick I knew thee moment inspired by the recovery of old burial urns, possibly Roman era, dug up in a field After a catalog of ancient and contemporary burial customs, Browne moves into a general meditation on mortality itself and our ignorance of the next world The book, according to scholars, is the first half of a diptych completed by one of Browne s esoteric pieces, The Garden of Cyrus, which I haven t read yet.Browne s prose never disappoints A Dialogue between two Infants in the wo
Fascinating articulation It is the heaviest stone that melancholy can throw at a man, to tell him he is at the end of his nature or that there is no further state to come, unto which this seems progressional, and otherwise made in vain Without this accomplishment, the natural expectation and desire of such a state, were but a fallacy in nature unsatisfied considerators would quarrel the justice of their constitutions, and rest content that Adam had fallen lower whereby, by knowing no other original, and deeper ignorance of themselves, they might have enjoyed the happiness of inferior creatures, who in tranquillity possess their constitutions, as having not the apprehension to deplore their own natures, and, being framed below the circumference of these hopes, or cognition of better being, the wisdom of God hath necessitated their contentment but the superior ingredient and obscured part of ourselves, whereto all present felicities afford no resti
The ultimate treatise on urns fire burials and what people practised it This books was recommended to me by a close friend you also have to look for the excellent portrait of Sir Thomas with his eyes directly looking at you Incredibly good prose with lots of references to Roman writers like Tibull
An interesting treatise on burial from the mid 1600 s The author is obviously affected by finding roman burial urns in europe Within these urns are personal objects I believe the author was excited to find and touch historical artifacts of those that c
Weird Why did I read this

➶ Hydriotaphia Free ➬ Author Thomas Browne – Rarefishingbooks.co.uk
  • ebook
  • 96 pages
  • Hydriotaphia
  • Thomas Browne
  • 20 January 2018
  • 9780811221542