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Posts Tagged ‘John Milton’

A Mashup Book from 1762

We used to think that the mash-up literary trend began in 2009 with Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, but it really started in 1762 with A Burlesque Translation of Homer.

You can download a free copy of the book at Open Library. Published under a pseudonym, author Thomas Bridges‘ took the classic epic and reframed it as a racy burlesque poem with comic illustrations. Public Domain Review has more about the book:

Homer’s Iliad set to bawdy verse by Thomas Bridges (c.1710-c.1775), originally published in 1762 under the pseudonym Caustic Barebones. The work achieved some popularity, and was reprinted several times, the last in 1797.

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What Was On Marilyn Monroe’s Reading List?

The iconic actress Marilyn Monroe may have played the role of a ditzy blonde in many films, but she was actually quite the bookworm whose reading preferences included books by James Joyce and Fyodor Dostoevsky.

Open Culture has more: “Once married to playwright Arthur Miller, Monroe stocked about 400 books on her shelves, many of which were later catalogued and auctioned off by Christie’s in New York City.”

Library Thing has made a list of 261 titles that were a part of Monroe’s personal library. Books on the list include: Out Of My Later Years by Albert Einstein; Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert; The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner; as well as poetry collections from Robert Frost, John Milton, and Edgar Allan Poe, among others. (Via Gothamist).

UPDATE: An earlier version of this post misspelled Edgar Allan Poe’s name.

BBC Poetry Series Drives Sales

JohnDonne.jpgA recent spate of poetry-related material has driven poetry sales in the U.K., selling copies of books that had languished on national shelves.

According to Bookseller, the BBC’s Poetry Season project actually motivated people to go to the bookstore. The multimedia series–with video interviews, articles, and a long list of poetry specials–generated a 92 percent increase in sales of Sylvia Plath poetry and a 300 percent increase in sales of John Donne (pictured, via) poetry.

Here’s more from the article: “According to Nielsen BookScan, sales of John Milton‘s Paradise Lost increased three-fold during the week following Armando Iannucci‘s analysis of the poem on BBC2 on 27th May, while sales of John Murray‘s £20 volume, The Collected Poems of George Mackay Brown, have increased by 844.4%, thanks to the poet’s ‘Hamnavoe’ being highlighted on BBC4′s ‘Poet’s Guide to Britain.’”