Wednesday, December 28, 2005

On Hilaire Belloc

Me: I know it's almost heresy for a traditional Catholic to say so, but I'm halfway through Characters of the Reformation, I'm not so sure about Hilaire Belloc.

Mrs. Curmudgeon: What do you mean?

Me: I mean, his subject matter is interesting, and his conjecture and intimations about the motives and characters of his subjects are well developed, but I'm not so sure about his style.

Mrs. C: His style?

Me: He seems to be talking down to me. When you read Chesterton, for instance, he's interacting with you as a wise friend. When you read Christopher Dawson, he's interacting with you as an eager scholar. Belloc is almost cheeky to his readers sometimes, like we're high school kids or something. Don't care for it.

Mrs. C: Belloc IS French, you know.

Me: He's English.

Mrs. C: Half French.

Me: Oh, How do you know this?

Mrs. C: It's on the back jacket of your book.

Me: Duh. That explains everthing.

(No charge to the good folks at TAN to the link to the page where this book can be purchased. It's still worth reading, and TAN is always worth supporting by buying their books directly, so they can keep the retail margin and put it into new projects)

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