Mont-Saint-Michel and Chartres: Henry Adams: Mont-Saint-Michel and Chartres: Henry Adams, Henry Adams: 9781604241433: Amazon.com: Books.
The relationship, between reader and writer, of son and father, may have existed in Queen Elizabeth’s time, but is much too close to be true for ours. The utmost that any writer could hope of his readers now is that they should consent to regard themselves as nephews, and even then he would expect only a more or less civil refusal from most of them. Indeed, if he had reached a certain age, he would have observed that nephews, as a social class, no longer read at all, and that there is only one familiar instance recorded of a nephew who read his uncle. The exception tends rather to support the rule, since it needed a Macaulay to produce, and two volumes to record it. Finally, the metre does not permit it. One may not say: “Who reads me, when I am ashes, is my nephew in wishes.”
In 1904, Adams privately published a copy of his “Mont Saint-Michel and Chartres”, a pastiche of history, travel, and poetry, that celebrated the unity of medieval society, especially as represented in the great cathedrals of France. Originally meant as a diversion for his nieces and “nieces-in-wish”, it was publicly released in 1913 at the request of Ralph Adams Cram, an important American architect, and published with support of the American Institute of Architects.
Comments of friends …
It is stunning to see the tides roll in at Saint Michel and watch the church stand on its own small island.
LOVE this book by Henry Adams. I read it first when I went to Chartres as a college student in 1980. I reread it in 2009 in preparation for a family trip to both Mont-Saint-Michel and Chartres at he end of our daughter’s high school exchange program …
Ordering this book now!