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Full text of "The Note Books Of Samuel Butler"

32               Elementary Morality

of their fellow-nestlings and leave off caring for them, the
bishop continues:—

" Whereas ' children of one family ' are constantly found
joined together by a love which only grows with years,
and they part for their posts of duty in the world with the
hope of having joyful meetings from time to time, ana of
meeting in a higher world when their life on earth is finished."

I am sure my great-grandfather did not look forward
to meeting his father in heaven—his father had cut iiim out
of his will; nor can I credit my grandfather with any great
longing to rejoin my great-grandfather—a worthy man
enough, but one with whom nothing ever prospered. I
am certain my father, after he was 40, did not wish to see
my grandfather any more—indeed, long before reaching that
age he had decided that Dr. Butler's life should not be written,
though R. W. Evans would have been only too glad to write
it. Speaking for myself, I have no wish to see my father
again, and I think it likely that the Bishop of Carlisle would
not be more eager to see his than I mine.

Unconscious Humour

" Writing to the Hon. Mrs. Watson in 1856, Charles Dickens
says: ' I have always observed within my experience that
the men who have left home very young have, many long years
afterwards, had the tenderest regard for it. That's a pleasant
thing to think of as one of the wise adjustments of this life
of ours.1 " *

Homer's Odyssey

From the description of the meeting between Ulysses
and Telemachus it is plain that Homer considered it quite
as dreadful for relations who had long been separated to
come together again as for them to separate in the first
instance. And this is about true.f

* This quotation occurs on the title page of Charles Dickens and
Rochester by Robert Langton. Chapman & Hall, 1880. Reprinted
with additions from the Papers of the Manchester Literary Club,
Vol. VI, 1880. But the italics are Butler's.

t Tnis is Butler's note as he left it. He made it just about the
time he hit upon the theory that the Odyssey was written by a woman.
If it had caught his eye after that theory had become established in