Friday 30 September 2022

Guest Review: Timpson’s Book of Curious Days: A Year of English Oddities By John Timpson

Full of oddities and little known facts, this day-by-day overview of English history will amuse and inform readers of all shades of curiosity. What really happened after the Battle of Hastings on October 14, 1066? And why are throats blessed every February 3rd at St. Etheldreda's Church in London? These and other celebrations, customs and anniversaries are collected and presented in Timpson's distinctive and humorous style.

Review: The former radio and television presenter John Timpson wrote a number of books describing various idiosyncratic aspects of English life following his retirement from broadcasting. This book, published in 1996, is one of them. For each of the 366 days in the calendar year, it details one event relating to a particular personality, historical figure or an unusual local celebration held on that day.

The book is therefore a day by day guide to some of the more eccentric customs in England. It also includes days celebrating some of the more obscure saints, such as St Boniface, rather than the more well known ones. So if you want to know when the first taxi-rank was established in England; what exactly is the Haxey Hood and why it is celebrated in the village of Haxey in Lincolnshire on January 6th; or why rubber-soled canvas shoes for playing croquet and tennis were named after Mr Plimsoll, after whom the line showing the maximum loading for merchant ships was also named; then this book will meet your needs.

As a wander through many of the eccentricities encountered in towns and villages in England throughout the year, I found this a whimsical and interesting book. I read it through from January 1st to December 31st, but it could equally be used as a reference to look up what event occurs on any particular day.

To order your copy now, just click the link: UK or US

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