Tom Cringle's Log (Classic Reprint)by Michael Scott
Sir Walter Scott designed at one time to be his own biographer. Boswell, in his determination 'to Johnsonise the land,' had at least succeeded in Boswellising biography, and within a few years of his death the appetite for private history had grown to an extent which alarmed Scott. 'I may therefore be permitted,' he wrote, 'without an
Excerpt from Tom Cringle's Log
Sir Walter Scott designed at one time to be his own biographer. Boswell, in his determination 'to Johnsonise the land,' had at least succeeded in Boswellising biography, and within a few years of his death the appetite for private history had grown to an extent which alarmed Scott. 'I may therefore be permitted,' he wrote, 'without an extraordinary degree of vanity, to take the precaution of recording a few leading circumstances (they do not merit the name of events) of a very quiet and uniform life - that, should any literary reputation survive my temporal existence, the public may know from good authority all that they are entitled to know of an individual who has contributed to their amusement.' These words were written in 1808, soon after the publication of Marmion had raised its author to the height of his poetical fame. In the years that followed, his life was destined, unfortunately, to be less quiet and uniform; but his contributions to the amusement of the public were to prove more, and more enduring than he had any notion of, and to take a different shape from any he had yet conceived, - though the opening chapters of Waverley were even then lurking, discarded and forgotten, among the now historic lumber of an old bureau. The biographical design was never completed.
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