The Book, Cat, & Cat Book Lovers Almanac

of historical trivia regarding books, cats, and other animals. Actually this blog has evolved so that it is described better as a blog about cats in history and culture. And we take as a theme the advice of Aldous Huxley: If you want to be a writer, get some cats. Don't forget to see the archived articles linked at the bottom of the page.

December 4, 2013

December 4, 1903

A. L. Rowse, (December 4, 1903 to October 3, 1997) was a British historian and a poet. He wrote a biography of Shakespeare, rather naturally since his specialty was Tudor England. Some of his book titles include, without any organizing principle of selection:

On History, a Study of Present Tendencies (1927)
Science and History: a New View of History (1928)
Sir Richard Grenville of the Revenge (1937)
Tudor Cornwall (1941)
The Spirit of English History (1943)
The Expansion of Elizabethan England (1955)
William Shakespeare: a Biography (1963)
Christopher Marlowe: a biography (1964)
Windsor Castle In The History Of England (1974)
Jonathan Swift: Major Prophet (1975)
Matthew Arnold: Poet and Prophet (1976)
Homosexuals In History (1977)
A Quartet of Cornish Cats (1986)
The Poet Auden: a Personal Memoir  (1987)
Quiller-Couch: a Portrait of "Q" (1988)
The Regicides and the Puritan Revolution (1994).

Rowse was over-weight and opinionated: he deplored the loss of standards in England after World War II.  These sound like Tory sentiments on the surface, but Rowse not only ran for Parliament as a Labor politician, his childhood was quite humble; his parents have been described as semi-literate, and there were no books in their home. This was in Cornwall, a place which grips the imagination of many, and as his birthplace it was always a focus for Rowse's studies. The topic is covered in another book he wrote: Peter: the White Cat of Trenarren (1974). The book includes pictures and Rowse describes his satisfaction at living there, a manor house with wide green vistas. Peter was a white cat, kind of fluffy, and not the first cat to love an historian. 

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