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A Time of Gifts : A John Murray Journey

A Time of Gifts : A John Murray Journey

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By Patrick Leigh Fermor (Author)
Format: Paperback / softback 384 pages
Publisher: John Murray Press
Imprint: John Murray Publishers Ltd
ISBN: 9781529369526
Published: 8 Jul 2021
Classifications: Europe, 20th century, Classic travel writing
Weight: 278g
Dimensions: 130 x 199 x 28 (mm)

Introduced by Jan Morris

'[This] gloriously ornate account of that epic journey is a classic' Robert MacFarlane

In 1933, aged eighteen, Patrick Leigh Fermor set out on his 'great trudge', a year-long journey by foot from the Hook of Holland to Istanbul. Three decades later he wrote A Time of Gifts, the sparklingly original account of the first part of this youthful adventure, which took him through the Low Countries, up the Rhine, through Germany, down the Danube, through Austria and Czechoslovakia, and as far as Hungary. Alone, carrying only a rucksack and with a small allowance of only a pound a week, Fermor had planned to sleep rough - to live 'like a tramp, a pilgrim, or a wandering scholar' - but a chance introduction in Bavaria led to comfortable stays in castles, and provided a glimpse of the old Europe of princes and peasants.

Hailed as a masterpiece, A Time of Gifts is in part a coming-of-age memoir, but it is also a rich and compelling portrait of a continent that - despite its resplendent domes and monasteries, its great rivers and grand cities - was soon to be swept away by war, modernisation and profound social change.

'Not only is this journey one of physical adventure but of cultural awakening. Architecture, art, genealogy, quirks of history and language are all devoured -- and here passed on -- with a gusto uniquely his' Colin Thubron

'One of the most romantic books of the twentieth century, Patrick Leigh Fermor's account of a long walk across Europe is also a literary treasure, a rich blend of action and observation' The Guardian

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