Friday, April 29, 2011

More Better Book Titles!

Likewise, here is a retitling of Mary Wollenstonecraft's work:

Thursday, April 28, 2011

For those Gentle Readers who found Keats hard going:

(From www.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Better Book Title!

The true meaning of The Age of Innocence:

(From Better Book Titles: www.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011


The Marquis de Condorcet was widely held to be a philosophe and one of the last members of the Enlightenment. However, that did not keep him from moments of great stupidity.

While in hiding during the Terror, Condorcet, wounded in the leg and disheveled, ordered an omlette in an inn.

"How many eggs would you like?" asked the inn-keeper, somewhat alarmed by his guest's wild appearance.

Condorcet, being an aristocrat, had no idea, and thus said, "Twelve."

The inn-keeper then realized he was an aristocrat on the run, and reported him to the authorities.

Condorcet certainly had egg on his face for that one.

(Get the title? It's a pun! Oof/oeuf? They sound the same, but one is the French word for egg?Fine, Gentle Reader, you simply do not posses the sophisticated appreciation of wordplay that the Amateur Historian does.)

They had to earn their keep somehow...

The British response to French émigrés fleeing to their shores was mixed at best. Burke was very much sympathetic to the émigré population, in particular to the segment of the population set on armed overthrow of the French Revolutionary government. Pitt was officially neutral, as he was up until the point where the French government declared war on Great Britain, but his later refusal to support émigré armies and his cabinet's Alien Laws preventing any French republicans from coming to England, and the banning of speakers, visitors and speakers suggest that Pitt was not altogether keen on increasing the French percentage of the population.

By far the oddest reaction to the French émigrés was that of the Duke of Bridgewater, he of the famous canals, who, Madame de Stael reports, rescued what seems to be an abbey's worth of monks for the purpose of having them wander through his gardens. It certainly beats having a Weeping Angel entertaining your neighbors at a garden party.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Complete History Of The Soviet Union, Arranged To The Melody Of Tetris

This is technically not the right time period, but the Amateur Historian hopes that her Gentle Readers will forgive her because the video is so catchy and so clever. Anyone who has played as much Tetris on his or her phone as the Amateur Historian certainly does feel like an exploited proletariat. The work is never done, and when it is it vanishes!

(As a random aside, the Amateur Historian's favorite stanza is

I am the man who arranges the blocks
that are made by the men in Kazistan
They come two weeks late
and they don't tessellate
but we're working to Stalin's five-year-plan!)