So, I’ve been blogging every day for three weeks straight, and boy are my arms tired! (Ba-dum!)
Anywho… I’m obviously delusional from tiredness, but it’s now day something-or-other, the day for the letter Q. I thought about writing about quirks, but probably everyone participating in the #AtoZchallenge2014 is doing that, since us creatives are, by definition, quirky, so I’m going back to my tried-and-true dictionary method. Only this time I’m consulting my 1921 edition of Collier’s New Encyclopedia, subhead: “A Loose Leaf and Self Revising Reference Work” (which I’ve never quite figured out how that erm, worked, exactly), Book 7, Ochre to Resorcin.
And the winner for Q (boy, I had to flip quite a few pages to get to this section, and it’s all of 13 pages):
Q is for Quarles, Francis
An aside: I find the comma use in the Encyclopedia quite amusing. If I were its editor today, I’d be slashing them all over the place!
Anywho, Mr. Quarles was an English poet born way back in 1592; he died in 1644, after siring 18 kids. Interestingly enough, a couple of his descendants were American abolitionists.
According to Wikipedia, where I found his image, he wrote 21 titles, including his first one, the lovely-sounding A Feast for Wormes. Did I mention that his work was primarily religious in nature? You can read all of 17 of his poems on poemhunter.com, tho I don’t necessarily recommend it. My eyes glazed over after just a few lines, and I actually like poetry!
Apparently, he had quite a following by the common folk, especially for his book Emblems (originally published in 1635 with “grotesque engraved illustrations”). However, the critics didn’t like him one whit. The Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900, Volume 47, as sourced here, says:
Most of his verse is diffuse and dull; he abounds in fantastic, tortuous, and irrational conceits, and he often sinks into ludicrous bathos…
Which I find hilarious. Poor guy’s been dead for 370 years, and the critics can still goad him, even tho those critics are also dead.
If you have a hankering, you can actually buy Mr. Quarles’ work on amazon! I am especially amused by this title (a reprint of his work done in 1777) – Quarles’ Emblems, divine and moral: together with Hieroglyphics of the life of man. Written by the celebrated Francis Quarles.
Poor Mr. Quarles. Dead. No longer celebrated, and being poked fun of on my blog.