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There are those who say that the Reverend Sydney Smith ought to be made a saint of the Church of England. There are those who say that he jested away his chances of a mitre. There are those who simply read him and laugh. Sydney Smith was not only a humorist. He was a respected clergyman who worked steadily for Roman Catholic emancipation despite his own staunch Anglicanism. In 1802 he helped to found The Edinburgh Review, which became one of the most powerful journals in Britain. Lord Macaulay referred to him as 'The Smith of Smiths'. Jane Austen is thought to have based Henry Tilner in Northanger Abbey on him. G. K. Chesterton was another of his admirers. This book gathers together a selection of Smith's own writings together with extracts from his daughter's biography of him. Arranged thematically, the passages deal with Home and Abroad, Politics, Social Evils, Education, Religion, and Health and Happiness. As well as Sydney's renowned wit, the collection enshrines the wisdom of a man of enormous common sense and the preaching of an eloquent orator. We discover the sloth, who 'moves suspended, rests suspended, sleeps suspended, and passes his life in suspense - like a young clergyman distantly related to a bishop.' We meet the bishop who 'deserved to be preached to death by wild curates.' But most of all, we enjoy the company of a man determined that 'as long as I can possibly avoid it I will never be unhappy.' The 'amusing defender of our faith' described a friend's idea of heaven as 'eating patC de foie gras to the sound of trumpets.' His present-day admirers may disagree, finding their ideal of heaven in reading this wonderfully entertaining book. Read an Extract from the Introduction here.
Buy Twelve Miles From a Lemon: Selected Writings and Sayings of Sydney Smith by Sydney Smith from our Christian Books store - isbn: 9780718829513 & 0718829514
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