One of the snags of this type of survey is that many legendary figures escape almost unnoticed. The exceedingly interesting Vic- torian madcap Master of the Quorn, Harry Hastings, who died at the age of 26 and whose health was still being drunk in the late s by the playboy Richard Wrottes- ley and his cronies, here gets only a few short paragraphs.
On the other hand, I was pleased to be introduced to the still active former Crown Equerry, Lieutenant Colonel Sir John Miller, a man of 'iron nerve' noted for 'his determination to take his own line across country'. I was also glad to learn that a healthy foxhound can run miles on a good day. The book has redeeming features.
It is attractively packaged, with a very nice Lionel Edwards cover and some fine nos- talgic pencil drawings in the text. It could make a soothing bedside book in a visitor's bedroom and I imagine it will sell quite well in those smart little bookshops which exist in the Shires.
It has some excellent photographs, including a side-saddle snap of the former Mrs Fred Barker, now Vis- countess Wimborne, a famous beauty whom I once sat next to at a dinner in Holland Villas Road. The author offers an embarrassingly jokey section on sex in the hunting-field, which includes a tasteless reference to a horse-box equipped with sleeping accom- modation, but he deals sensibly with the Quorn video furore. Some of the liveliest bits of writing come from Michael Claytbn's own weekly hunt- ing diary in Horse and Hound.
Think of the painters who have depicted Englishmen and their horses and dogs: Stubbs, Wootton, Alken, Herring.
Reflect upon the writers, from Fielding and Trollope to Sassoon and Kipling, who have scaled lyrical heights to celebrate the joy of riding a fine horse hard across country amid the music of the hounds. Virginia Woolf, no friend of rustic savages, mused with puzzled admiration about the impact of fox-hunters upon English literature: They have had their effect upon the language.
Paying the price of progress in China 1: MELTON is in the heart of one of the country's most popular and well-established hunting territories. Hundreds more names appear at the end of the book, where present-day sub- scribers and donors to the various hunts are listed, and one can only pray these don't come to the attention of animal rights zealots. IT was a once-in-a-lifetime spectacle, the likes of which Melton may never see again. Copyright Los Angeles Times. Not this year and I credit that to the extra special events, continued glorious tailgates, and general good cheer.
This riding and tumbling, this being blown upon and rained upon and splashed from head to foot with mud, have worked themselves into the very texture of English prose and given it that leap and dash, that stripping of images from flying hedge and tossing tree which distinguish it. Anthony Trollope observed that no rural activity did more to bring together every kind of person in the countryside: No man captured the view of England from the saddle better than Siegfried Sassoon.
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Trollope portrayed foxhunting squires with affection, but without illusions about their philistinism. Mr Spooner of Spoon Hall "could read, and always looked at the country newspaper; but a book was a thing that he couldn't bear". Surtees's fox-hunting novels gave 19th-century literature one of its most delightfully named heroines, Lucy Glitters, together with a peerlessly funny picture of country life's parvenus, rogues and bounders. The most famous fox-hunter in literature is Surtees's humble grocer Mr Jorrocks, who proclaimed the virtues of country life with characteristic exuberance: London's the rich man's paradise, the poor man's puggatory.
Many rustic fox-hunters hated visiting London swells.
The keenest sportsmen, then as now, cared nothing for an exquisite turnout and fashionable conversation. They were monastically devoted to the breeding and working of horses and hounds. MELTON is in the heart of one of the country's most popular and well-established hunting territories.
For centuries royalty and aristocrats have been attracted to the area to ride with three of the country's premier hunts — the Quorn, the Belvoir and the Cottesmore. Perhaps the most famed hunter in recent years has been Prince Charles, who has ridden with all three. But it's the Quorn that national newspapers often call his favourite.
However, Charles is not the only Royal to ride with the Quorn. This became the social focal point of the area and it was the done thing to be invited to one of the Prince's dinner parties, according to Michael Clayton's book Foxhunting In Paradise. The Prince was regarded as an enthusiastic and fearless rider and it was while hunting around Melton his scandalous romance with Wallis Simpson began.
The Quorn Hunt as we now know it was founded in by Hugo Meynell, but its ancestry goes back to Over its magnificent history the Quorn has moved kennels twice — from its original base at Quorndon near Loughborough, to Barrow-on-Soar and finally to a purpose-built complex at Kirby Bellars. Clayton's Foxhunting in Paradise says the Belvoir Hunt was started around by the third Duke of Rutland For hunting buffs it also says the phrase Tally Ho is derived from the Normans who when hunting would cry Ty a Hillaut if a deer they were tracking made a move.
The Cottesmore is believed to have originated around when Thomas Noel, of the Earls of Gainsborough family, purchased hounds.