A Time of Gifts

A Time of Gifts

On Foot to Constantinople : From the Hook of Holland to the Middle Danube

Book - 2005
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This beloved account about an intrepid young Englishman on the first leg of his walk from London to Constantinople is simply one of the best works of travel literature ever written.

At the age of eighteen, Patrick Leigh Fermor set off from the heart of London on an epic journey--to walk to Constantinople. A Time of Gifts is the rich account of his adventures as far as Hungary, after which Between the Woods and the Water continues the story to the Iron Gates that divide the Carpathian and Balkan mountains. Acclaimed for its sweep and intelligence, Leigh Fermor's book explores a remarkable moment in time. Hitler has just come to power but war is still ahead, as he walks through a Europe soon to be forever changed--through the Lowlands to Mitteleuropa, to Teutonic and Slav heartlands, through the baroque remains of the Holy Roman Empire; up the Rhine, and down to the Danube.

At once a memoir of coming-of-age, an account of a journey, and a dazzling exposition of the English language, A Time of Gifts is also a portrait of a continent already showing ominous signs of the holocaust to come.
Publisher: New York : New York Review Books, [2005]
Copyright Date: ©1977
ISBN: 9781590171653
Branch Call Number: 914 FERMO
Characteristics: xi, 321 pages ; 21 cm.


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Oct 21, 2020

The author probably can’t help it, but he would’ve done well to heed Hemingway’s response to William Faulkner on diction:

“Poor Faulkner. Does he really think beg emotions come from big words? He thinks I don’t know the ten-dollar words. I know them all right. But there are older and simpler and better words, and those are the ones I use.”

WVMLStaffPicks Oct 27, 2014

Shimmering with unforgettable images of a world that was soon to change forever, A Time of Gifts represent travel-autobiography at its finest. In 1933 Fermor spent a year and a half walking from the Hook of Holland all the way to Constantinople. Written in later years but often quoting from detailed diaries of the time, he chronicles with exquisite balance the keen powers of observation, appetite for adventure and sense of humour of the teenager he was with the virtuoso skill of the great writer he became.

Sep 11, 2014

P. 92

ChristchurchLib Oct 14, 2013

"A renowned British travel writer's chronicle of his twelve-hundred-mile walking trip from Holland to Hungary in 1934 at the age of eighteen provides insight into a Europe hovering on the brink of the Second World War." Armchair Travel October 2013 http://www.nextreads.com/Display2.aspx?SID=5acc8fc1-4e91-4ebe-906d-f8fc5e82a8e0&N=688525

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