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My favourite books 29: Selected Cautionary Verses

Selected Cautionary Verses by Hilaire Belloc

Originally published by Duckworth; this edition, Puffin 1950

Properly cruel verse and satire for children, with plenty for adults to enjoy as well – indeed, the effect is not dissimilar to a DreamWorks cartoon, working on different levels for all the family.  With a little practice, I could still recite Matilda, Who Told Lies And Was Burned To Death, from memory, but you’d have to buy me a drink first.

Some of Belloc‘s beliefs were pretty obnoxious by modern standards, which is one reason why the rest of his voluminous output is now little read.  He was a “man of letters”, like Chesterton or Jerome.  Do they still exist?  

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2 Comments on “My favourite books 29: Selected Cautionary Verses”

  1. Sounds great fun- I can’t believe I haven’t read it before. I know it’s a little ‘commercial’ but have you thought about a ‘buy this here’ link at the foot of each posting of your favourite books? Not the obvious link of course, but maybe to a few interesting alternative suppliers…