MANY of the tales in this collection appeared either in the Indian Antiquary, the Calcutta Review, or the Legends of the Punjab. They were then in the form of literal translations, in many cases uncouth or even unpresentable to ears polite, in all scarcely intelligible to the untravelled English reader; for it must be remembered that, with the exception of the Adventures of Raja Rasâlu, all these stories are strictly folk-tales passing current among a people who can neither read nor write, and whose diction is full of colloquialisms, and, if we choose to call them so, vulgarisms. It would be manifestly unfair, for instance, to compare the literary standard of such tales with that of the Arabian Nights, the Tales of a Parrot, or similar works.More info →
The stories begin with those which children like best—the old Blue Beard, Puss in Boots, Hop o’ my Thumb, Little Red Riding Hood, The Sleeping Beauty, and Toads and Pearls. These were first collected, written, and printed at Paris in 1697.More info →
There are, roughly speaking, two distinct types of Scottish Fairy Tales. There are what may be called "Celtic Stories," which were handed down for centuries by word of mouth by professional story-tellers, who went about from clachan to clachan in the "High-lands and Islands," earning a night's shelter by giving a night's entertainment, and which have now been collected and classified for us by Campbell of Isla and others.More info →
CHRISTOPHER COLUMBUS discovered America on the 12th of October, 1492. He had spent eighteen years in planning for that wonderful first voyage which he made across the Atlantic Ocean. The thoughts and hopes of the best part of his life had been given to it. He had talked and argued with sailors and scholars and princes and kings, saying, "I know that, by sailing west across the great ocean, one may at last reach lands that have never been visited by Europeans." But he had been laughed at as a foolish dreamer, and few people had any faith in his projects.More info →
Where is the harm? The truth is that the Folk Lore Society—made up of the most clever, learned, and beautiful men and women of the country—is fond of studying the history and geography of Fairy Land. This is contained in very old tales, such as country people tell, and savages:
'Little Sioux and little Crow,
Little frosty Eskimo.'
THERE lies before me, as I write, a quaint old book; from this little book—torn and soiled, its edges all gone—nearly all the stories in this volume are drawn.
In their earliest childhood Hungarian children hear the story of "Forget-me-Not" (Nfelejts), the history of the "Twin Hunchbacks", and the doings of the wicked Sultana in the "Magic Cat"More info →
The present publication is intended to supply a recognised deficiency in our literature—a library edition of the Essays of Montaigne. This great French writer deserves to be regarded as a classic, not only in the land of his birth, but in all countries and in all literatures. His Essays, which are at once the most celebrated and the most permanent of his productions, form a magazine out of which such minds as those of Bacon and Shakespeare did not disdain to help themselves; and, indeed, as Hallam observes, the Frenchman's literary importance largely results from the share which his mind had in influencing other minds, coeval and subsequent.More info →
Once upon a time there lived a King and a Queen who had one daughter called Rainbow. When she was christened, the people of the city were gathered together outside the cathedral, and amongst them was an old gipsy woman. The gipsy wanted to go inside the cathedral, but the Beadle would not let her, because he said there was no room. When the ceremony was over, and the King and Queen walked out, followed by the Head Nurse who carried the baby, the gipsy called out to them:More info →
"Candide, in this illustrated book", who a young man, and who is living a sheltered life in an Edenic paradise and being indoctrinated with Leibnizian optimism (or simply Optimism) by his mentor, Pangloss.
The work describes the abrupt cessation of this lifestyle, followed by Candide's slow, painful disillusionment as he witnesses and experiences great hardships in the world. Voltaire concludes with Candide, if not rejecting optimism outright, advocating a deeply practical precept, "we must cultivate our garden", in lieu of the Leibnizian mantra of Pangloss, "all is for the best in the best of all possible worlds".