A new book with a Rochester chapter

by Stephen Jeffreys

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Jackslady
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A new book with a Rochester chapter

Unread postby Jackslady » Fri May 26, 2006 2:59 pm

Just thought I would share the following:

There is a new book out here in the UK (found it in Waterstone's) , "The Lives of The English Rakes" by Fergus Linnane, which has a chapter about Rochester, and also chapters on Charles II and George Villiers, Duke of Buckingham, who was a close friend of Rochester's and involved in some of his exploits.

I bought the book because I collect anything and everything on Wilmot...it's an interesting read, the author has obviously culled information from most of the Wilmot biogs that are out there (and admits as such) but I have to warn that he presents the earl in quite a lurid and unfavourable light! He quotes freely from the play we see in the film, even though there is no definite evidence Rochester was the author. Several of the earl's more debauched moments are presented with relish and as though they are definite truth, whereas other biographers have raised doubts.

Wilmot was no saint and that's an understatement, but I do like to think he had redeeming qualities (such as his honesty and his love for his wife) and of course his fierce intelligence. I'm not sure this author gives a fair view, but as I say, it's a lively read!

In addition, the book traces the lives of further "rakes" including the members of the Hellfire Club and Edward VIII, for anyone interested in English history.
"Easy on the goods darlin!"
"Tis not an easy thing to be entirely happy, but to be kind is very easy, and that is the greatest measure of happiness"-John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester

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DepplySmitten
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Unread postby DepplySmitten » Fri May 26, 2006 3:40 pm

Thank you Jackslady..sounds extremely interesting. I'll have to check this one out! :thanks!:

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DeppInTheHeartOfTexas
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Unread postby DeppInTheHeartOfTexas » Fri May 26, 2006 4:17 pm

Thanks for the info, Jackslady! :thanks!: I prefer the more blanced pictures of Rochester too but there is no denying he deserves a chapter in a book of famous rakes!
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming -
Wow! What a ride!

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Unread postby In-too-Depp » Fri May 26, 2006 4:33 pm

Agreed DITHOT he was a rake but it doesn't sound as if this book has a very balanced view. Thanks JL for the info, I'll take a look at it and see if I think it's worth buying.
And Wit, was his vain frivolous pretence
Of pleasing others, at his own expense

Rochester ,"Satyr" on Man

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Liz
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Unread postby Liz » Fri May 26, 2006 5:02 pm

:thanks!: Thanks, Jackslady for informing us of the book and for the review. I'll probably pass on this one, though. Too many books. Too little time. :-/
You can't judge a book by its cover.

The only thing that matters is the ending. It's the most important part of the story.

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Unread postby Jackslady » Sat May 27, 2006 1:28 pm

I think it's always useful when one of us reads a book on Johnny/Rochester/Pirates, whatever, to report on the boards, because that way people won't be wasting their money if it's a re-hash, or like this book, an interesting read but somewhat biased.
"Easy on the goods darlin!"
"Tis not an easy thing to be entirely happy, but to be kind is very easy, and that is the greatest measure of happiness"-John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester

*Special thanks to es for help with my lovely avatar*


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