Sunday, November 05, 2017

Not from South Philly …


Logan Pearsall Smith was a writer who could afford to take his time, and his output was fairly small - a life of the Jacobean scholar-diplomat Sir Henry Wotton, a trickle of essays and studies, a volume of memoirs, some excellent anthologies. His best-known book, the collection of aphorisms and vignettes called ''All Trivia,'' did not appear until 1933, when he was nearly 70, but it had been built up layer by layer from the original ''Trivia'' that he had had privately printed over 30 years before. Not for nothing did he rejoice in the reputation of being a perfectionist, a tireless searcher-out of the happy cadence and the fastidious phrase.

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