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Read from August 14 to 18, 2012
Dedication: To John, Madeleine and Felix Reiss. With love.
Some safer world in depths of woods embrac'd
Some happier island in the watry waste... Alexander Pope
A special thanks:
I should like to thank the British Council for the grant of a six-month Viking Scholarship to Sweden and the staffs of the English Department and Library of Lund University, where the background reading for this novel was done, for their unfailing help and kindness.
BOOK ONE 1752 - 1753
The ship he meant was the Liverpool Merchant, Captain Saul Thurso, and he had never seen her, though she carried the seeds of all his dreams in her hold.
Matthew Paris's last night on shore was spent at an inn in Water Street, not far from the docks. He had called earlier at Red Cross Street to make his farewells, declining all hospitable urgings, deeming it easier for himself as for his patron if he did not impose himself for such a short stay.
Erasmus Kemp stood by the lakeside. The scene he looked forward to and dreaded was almost upon him.
Page 132: These are strong arguments against a fixed creation and an unchanging order.
From where Erasmus was standing he had a view across to the open farmland rising beyond Wolpert's estate.
The departure of Adams and subsequent collapse of the rehearsals brought happier days for Erasmus.
six brass buttons
It was an uneventful voyage, apart from the attempt of one negro to put an end to his life by severing the veins in his neck with his nails.
The ship Thurso sent by made quicker passage and the letters were in Kemp's hands within a month.
'He is leaving without his full compliment of negroes,' Kemp said to his son as they sat together in their office overlooking the waterfront. 'He declares himself short by twelve.'
Sir William Templeton, His Majesty's Principaal Secretary to the West India Office, was at his dressing-table, still in turban and flowered banyan.
St Augustine, off the coast of Florida
The passage of Erasmus's ship up the coast towards St Augustine had been observed by Hushes the climber, who also noticed the unusual length of time she dallied at anchor. He was high in a gum-resin tree in a jungle cluster surrounding a freshwater pool where white-tail deer came to drink - he had been waiting for the deer since early morning.
Nigh on perfect but tough on the soul. 4.5 upped to 5*. It lost the .5 because of the earlier Erasmusintheplay part which I disliked.