Saturday, 11 July 2009

Jane Austen Quote - Week 64 by Linda

I picked up “Sanditon” again and found another treasure in Chapter 7:

I have read several of Burns's poems with great delight," said Charlotte as soon as she had time to speak. "But I am not poetic enough to separate a man's poetry entirely from his character; and poor Burns's known irregularities greatly interrupt my enjoyment of his lines. I have difficulty in depending on the truth of his feelings as a lover. I have not faith in the sincerity of the affections of a man of his description. He felt and he wrote and he forgot."

I had certainly heard of Robert Burns, the poet, but could not remember any specifics about the man or his works. So I went to Google to dig up some dirt on his character and ‘known irregularities’.

Miss Austen and I seem to have the same propensity to judge a writer’s works by his/her character. I like to know a bit about a writer as I read what she/he wrote. Well, I found the ‘dirt’. It appears that he was a bit free in his love life by bestowing his heart among several ‘ladies’. Miss Austen and I would hardly approve, I dare say. Therefore, we conclude it must have ‘tainted’ his works. Not only that, but also I noticed that he wrote with a Scottish accent, which I have a bit of trouble translating. Well, I have certainly been forewarned and shall take a bit of care if I happen to pick up a Burns book, or should that be “burns his book”? I shall leave it for you to determine! And please, do not think that I have any prejudices against the Scots, for I am part Scot myself. Any enlightenment you may have on this subject is most welcome.

Linda the Librarian

Pic: Robert Burns, from dontwastewine


Icha said...

Uhm, at the moment my comment is as shallow as Burns' behaviour. He was cute (what sideburns) :-P and I guess that's why he was a lady killer. But I haven't read his poems, so no comments there...

Barbara said...

That's what I do, too - judge a writer's works by his or her character or personal views. That is why - even as a German ;) - I do not like the works of Goethe, because he was such a womanizer, and whichever of his works I read I have to think of this fact and that spoils my joy :p