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Little Britain

Washington Irving

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .I am looked upon as the only independent gentleman of the neighborhood; and, being curious to learn the internal state of a community so apparently shut up within itself, I have managed to work my way into all the concerns and secrets of the place.

Little Britain may truly be called the heart's core of the city; the stronghold of true John Bullism. It is a fragment of London as it was in its better days, with its antiquated folks and fashions. Here flourish in great preservation many of the holiday games and customs of yore. The inhabitants most religiously eat pancakes on Shrove Tuesday, hot-cross-buns on Good Friday, and roast goose at Michaelmas; they send love-letters on Valentine's Day, burn the pope on the fifth of November, and kiss all the girls under the mistletoe at Christmas. Roast beef and plum pudding are also held in superstitious veneration, and port and sherry maintain their grounds as the only true English wines; all others being considered vil. . . Read More

Community Reviews

Irving's short memoir of his time in central London is an excellent window into nineteenth century urban middle class Britain as well as a fascinating travelogue. Irving's superiority as a writer is evident. His descriptions paint a vivid picture of the area around St Paul's, and the Britons he desc

It was a description rather than a story :/
Boring.

Very similar to Kocúrkovo.