The Ex-Classics project was founded in 2000 to fill an unmet need. When reading the blurb etc. to a book by Charles Dickens or Charlotte Bronte, say, we would often come across sentences like "Favourite reading included . . ." If it's good enough for them, it's good enough for us. So off we go to the library or bookshop, to be met first with blank stares and then with the information that the book has been out of print for decades. Our first two books were Gil Blas and Hudibras, which are prime examples of this. This web site is dedicated to rescuing these works from obscurity and making them available online, both for reading directly, and for downloading.
Book of the
Month -- July 2021
In 1855 a little book was published in
It starts as it means to go on with an Introduction pouring scorn on the work of other writers of phrasebooks "A choice of familiar dialogues, clean of gallicisms, and despoiled phrases, it was missing yet to studious portuguese and brazilian Youth. . . ";, and continues with lists of Useful Words, through Familiar Dialogues and Anecdotes to Idiotisms and Proverbs. At each stage the reader's amazed laughter increases.
Anyone who has ever read it cannot resist quoting favourite parts. These are ours; the notes in italics are also ours):
Chastisements.(Which even Donald Rumsfeld might hesitate to approve.)
For to ride a horse.
Very dissatisfied customer (brandishing pistol):
Here is a horse who have a bad looks. Give me another; I will not that. He not
sall know to march, he is pursy, he is foundered. Don't you are ashamed to give
me a jade as like? he is undshoed, he is with nails up; it want to lead to the
A beggar, to
But enough. Read, and weep with laughter
What do you think?
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