Treats In Store

Back in the summer of 2008, I had cause to mention Sabine Baring-Gould, author of innumerable works including a sixteen-volume Lives Of The Saints, a study of werewolves, grave desecration and cannibalism, and a biography of Robert Stephen Hawker (1803-1875), the eccentric country vicar who spent much of his time smoking opium in a clifftop hut made from driftwood, talked to birds, dressed up as a mermaid, excommunicated his cat, and kept a pet pig.

I am pleased to report that this morning, at the London Library, recalling Baring-Gould, and brimming with glee, I borrowed his Hawker biography (The Vicar Of Morwenstow, 1886), a collection of pieces entitled Curiosities Of Olden Times (1869), and a biography of the great man himself, Onward Christian Soldier : A Life Of Sabine Baring-Gould, Parson, Squire, Novelist, Antiquary 1834-1924 by William Purcell (1957).

This trio of tomes will, I expect, contain much that is diverting and instructive and I shall share the more startling bits with you when I buckle down to reading them.

3 thoughts on “Treats In Store

  1. Every Christmas (usually the day after Boxing Day) we meet up with an old family friend at Morwenstow, have lunch at the excellent Bush Inn and have a poke around Hawker’s church. There’s a terrifying effigy of him in one of the back pews.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.