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Introduction to the Compleat Angler

Andrew Lang

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .His language, when he spoke, was reckoned unparliamentary (as it undeniably was), and he dissolved the Long Parliament.  While Marriott was advertising Walton’s work, Cromwell was making a Parliament of Saints, ‘faithful, fearing God, and hating covetousness.’  This is a good description of Izaak, but he was not selected.  In the midst of revolutions came The Compleat Angler to the light, a possession for ever.  Its original purchasers are not likely to have taken a hand in Royalist plots or saintly conventicles.  They were peaceful men.  A certain Cromwellian trooper, Richard Franck, was a better angler than Walton, and he has left to us the only contemporary and contemptuous criticism of his book: to this we shall return, but anglers, as a rule, unlike Franck, must have been for the king, and on Izaak’s side in controversy.

Walton brought out a second edition in 1655.  He rewrote the book, adding more than a third, sup. . . Read More

Community Reviews

Spoiler alert our door grapes?

Seems to be a vain attempt to ride the coat tails of a famous author by subtle accusations of plagiarism and expose. Johnny come lately tries to share what "really happened" when the Compleat Angler was written. Snooze fest!

I found this after attempting the main title a few months ago and quitting 10% in. I am now ready to make another attempt as Andrew explained some topics that should make the main title easier to grasp.