February 17, 2006

A time machine

from - RSA

At home last night I wanted to find out something about the Italian city Trieste. The nearest book at hand was a Baedecker's Traveler's Guide to Italy, published in 1909 in Great Britain. (I'd picked it up out of curiosity at a book auction years ago, along with a few other antiquarian travel books.) The first sentence of the introduction ran something along these lines:

This book, an abridgment of three volumes covering Northern, Central, and Southern Italy, is designed for the use of travelers who have only four or five weeks at their disposal. . .

Quite a different perspective on leisure time. Browsing through the rest of the introduction, I found another anacronism, in a discussion of second-quality lodging:

The common idea of Cleanliness in Italy is behind the age.

Stiff upper lip!

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Posted by RSA at February 17, 2006 12:07 PM
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