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By E. H. Gombrich

E. H. Gombrich’s bestselling heritage of the area for younger readers tells the tale of mankind from the Stone Age to the atomic bomb, focusing now not on small aspect yet at the sweep of human event, the level of human fulfillment, and the intensity of its frailty. The made from a beneficiant and humane sensibility, this undying account makes intelligible the whole span of human heritage. In 40 concise chapters, Gombrich tells the tale of guy from the stone age to the atomic bomb. In among emerges a colourful photo of wars and conquests, grand artistic endeavors, and the unfold and barriers of technological know-how. this can be a textual content ruled no longer via dates and proof, yet via the sweep of mankind’s event around the centuries, a consultant to humanity’s achievements and an acute witness to its frailties.

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Scotland always remained an ominous land, however, not least for him because as a child he had been lovingly instructed by his governess, Alice Cunningham, a dedicated soul who filled the child with the darkest tales and scariest bogies to be conjured by Calvinist fears of hell and damnation. Given such a beginning, one is surprised, or relieved, to find that Stevenson was destined to write one of the great parables of the eternal battle between good and evil, The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr.

Born in Edinburgh on November 13, 1850, Stevenson contracted in his early years what was probably tuberculosis, a condition that would cause repeated bouts of illness throughout his life. But frequent confinement to the sickbed did not stifle the child舗s imagination. The young boy wrote tales based on biblical passages and Scottish history and soon gained a reputation as a storyteller. In 1867 Stevenson enrolled in Edinburgh University. His family expected that he would join the distinguished line of Stevenson engineers; instead he chose to study the law.

When Stevenson uses Marryat舗s stockade in chapter XIX, it becomes our author舗s own possession (lawyers would call it his intellectual property), because Stevenson transforms the stockade scene for his own uses, according to an ancient literary law of the rights of genius. 舡 This confession tells a lot about Stevenson, for like Shakespeare he understood the mythological power of proverbs, but more personally he would know about the sweetness of stolen waters, for he had climbed many a mountainside and drunk the clear, free mountain streams (舠burns,舡 as they are called in Scotland) tumbling down hills that legally belonged to someone else.

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