Druids Bringing in the Mistletoe, Glasgow Boys, Kelvingrove Museum, Detail

Millais, Mariana
Measure for Measure

J.E. Millais, Mariana from Measure for Measure

Jean Paul Lemieux
Nineteen Ten Remembered

Jean Paul Lemieux, Nineteen Ten Remembered

I'm truly sorry man's dominion
Has broken nature's social union,
An' justifies that ill opinion
What makes thee startle
At me, thy poor, earth-born companion,
An' fellow-mortal!

  Robert Burns
    To A Mouse


James Guthrie, Hard at It


Time, Space and the Universal and Dear Frankie

PoemHunter — all poetry of Robert Burns.   Someone has used up a large amount of time and energy making available to Internet viewers the complete collected poetry of Robert Burns, which was of enormous value in writing these Dear Frankie webpages, and I thank most sincerely the person or persons concerned.

. . . . .

I also read Scott and Tennyson and much else in a quest for Quotations, but very soon a quote had to prove itself superior in relevance to almost anything by Robert Burns.   Because if Dear Frankie is an investigation of benevolence, Burns is a study in the uses of sympathy.  

My favourite part of Montreal's daily La Presse is the citation secrète;   the puzzle for April 18th, 2012 reads,

Le moyen infallible de rajeunir une citation est de la faire exacte.
    — Emile Faguet

Which I couldn't say better myself as I continually discover that a quotation either means something entirely different than I imagined, or is much richer than a few popular remembered words.   Burns's ' best-laid schemes of mice and men gang aft a-gley' is only the final summing-up of a sympathetic acknowledgement of catastrophic damage done by his December plow to the nest and carefully-accumulated provisions of a tiny helpless creature not in a position to replenish what has been destroyed (To A Mouse).

Thy wee bit housie, too, in ruin!
Its silly wa's the win's are strewin!
An' naething, now, to big a new ane,
O foggage green!

While To A Louse reminds us that the pretty new bonnet we reflect upon with such self-satisfaction may be a target for vermin who have no respect for rank or beauty or worth, ending, of course, with the well-known:—

O wad some Pow'r the giftie gie us
To see oursels as others see us!
It wad frae mony a blunder free us,
    And foolish notion.


. . . . .

HomePage:— Dear Frankie
    I am always sorry when any language is lost ...
   ... Languages are the pedigree of nations.
       — Samuel Johnson, [ ODQ : 276 : 4 ]
James Boswell, Tour to the Hebrides

Many of the citations in these Sandsifter Five webpages either came from, or were verified in, The Oxford Dictionary of Quotations, Second Edition, 1955 (ODQ).   Even in the case of Robert Burns, it was familiarity with the ODQ citations that sent me on the hunt for the complete quotation.

Introduction:— Dear Frankie
... 'Charles Laughton's 1955 filmed artistic masterpiece The Night of the Hunter, a beautiful but terrifying adult Fairy Tale.'
Note that in 1992, The Night of the Hunter was deemed "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant" by the United States Library of Congress, and was selected for preservation in its National Film Registry.

... 'to the dreadful and disgusting Myth of Cronus [also known as Saturn] devouring his children'.
What Goya left unillustrated on this subject, Titian and Doré and other artists were only too willing to complete.

1B-Benevolent Impersonation
... 'The best such Novel (and subsequent 1986 BBC 3-part miniseries) on our bookshelves and VCR collection is Josephine Tey's 1949 Brat Farrar ...'
[See IMDB website for reviews of the BBC three-part miniseries.

... 'Thank heaven for TV Ontario (TVO) which presents a wealth of British programming including the BBC television series The Private Life of a Masterpiece.'

1E-Best-Laid Schemes
... 'our old friend, the presumptuous sin of envy ...'
... Keep thy servant also from presumptuous sins, lest they get the dominion over me ...'
Psalm XIX : 12, The Book of Common Prayer [ODQ 392 : 34]

3A-The Favour
... 'Davey Morrison. Killed off in self-defence by filmmakers preferring Buck Owen's Great White Horse to Leoncavallo's I Pagliacci ...

...  'and are reminded of painter J.D. Fergusson (1874-1961), one of the famed Glasgow Boys, acknowledging a Scottish tradition of choosing dismal tones and shades ...'

' Everyone in Scotland should refuse to have anything to do with black or dirty and dingy colours, and insist on clean colours in everything. I remember when I was young any colour was considered a sign of vulgarity. Greys and blacks were the only colours for people of taste and refinement. Good pictures had to be black, grey, brown or drab. Well! let's forget it, and insist on things in Scotland being of colour that makes for and associates itself with light, hopefulness, health and happiness. '
    J.D. Fergusson, Modern Scottish Painting, William MacLellan, Glasgow 1943.
    — from Fergusson at Stirling, Accredited Museum, MLA (Museums Libraries Archives) Council.

Which seems as good a moment as any to end this WebPage.


[WebPage last amended April 23rd, 2012]


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