To my dearest Grandfather "G—,”

Yeoman Farmer.jpgIn Life, You were of lively Disposition. In Death however, Your Legacy lives on. Though You were an industrious Sort, your amassed Fortune was never afforded the Opportunity to be spent. Your bequeathal of said Fortune upon Myself is no slight Honour, and one I take with great Pride. As such, I have endeavoured to put to appropriate Use the Coin with which I find Myself now overwhelmed with.

Though involved in a Business of the largely agrarian Sort, I knew you also to be a Man possessing an Appreciation for Culture, with exquisitely high Taste. In that Vein, I have decided to invest your Savings into the very Culture you so admired from afar. This Year, I shall give myself up to Europe in an Effort to appease your Legacy. I shall immerse Myself in the Arts and relay my Experiences to You through these Letters. I undertake my own cultural Grand Tour in substitution for the One You were unable to take in your Lifetime. My only Hope is that this will prove to be an adequate Comfort as you transition to the Afterlife.

Lovingly, Your Grandson L—



Dearest G—,

As I make my way across our Europe, I have stumbled upon quite the inspired Newspaper among one of the fashionable Coffee Houses that dot our Nation. It runs under the Name of The Examiner and echoes many of the Sentiments lamentably absent in our present Society. Taken from an earlier Issue, which a kindly Scholar was able to procure for me, the chief design of this Enterprise seems to be nothing more than “the Pleasure and Profit of every Individual Reader, who will not deny himself the Exercise of his Faculties, the Benefit of his Reason, and shut his Eyes against the clearest Light of the Sun.”

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Why, it is the same basic call we Whigs had been calling for from the Tories for so long! Whereas they blindly follow, we at least have the Logic to determine for ourselves our Course of action, as well as where our Beliefs lie. It is because of that fact that a Catholic on the Throne would prove utterly disastrous, much like you reiterated in your Rants of old. How happy you might have proved to Be to see a Protestant now on the Throne again. Perhaps in this Light, it would not be a Stretch of the Imagination to see The Examiner as an Extension of Whig Sentimentality, and therefore not entirely a waste to continue “examining” from Time to Time, if only to hear the Truth as it is reproduced for the Masses.

Your Grandson, L—



Dearest G—

Following the fervor of the City, I allowed myself to be swept up in the Excitement of the Theatre. I never much cared for the reenactment of the written word before attending a Show down at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, but I now have a newfound Appreciation. That Night they were enacting a play by none other than the acting Manager Colley Cibber, entitled The Non-juror, A Comedy. As it is Acted at the Theatre-Royal, by His Majesty’s Servants. Within it, the Audience is presented with the destructive Non-juror (Clergy), through the Illustration of Dr. Wolf, ultimately clouded by his own inevitable Demise; a Sentiment that can be easily applied to the Fate of the Catholic here in Europe. nonjurors.jpg

And after witnessing such a masterful Illustration of such a misguided Group, I can say with Confidence that Sir Colley Cibber is a Treasure of our fair Europe, and one that deserves the highest Office an Author might receive in Service to his Country. Our Colley Cibber is no dunce! On the contrary, I daresay even the most skillful of Linguists would have a hard time painting him as such. You would have been proud, G—.

Impassionately, L—



Dearest G—,

At Port, as I sat down to peruse another edition of The Examiner, an older Gentleman approached me with a keen Purpose. He probed my Opinion of the Theatre and several Works of Poetry, as well as on the political dilemmas in The Examiner. I suppose my Eloquence and endorsement of the Whig party was enough satisfy him, as he soon revealed himself to be an Editor and Publisher of various Accounts. He had recently acquired one such Account, detailing the Journey of one Robinson Crusoe somewhere in the Caribbean Islands.robinson-crusoe-man-friday.jpg


I asked to read it and came away astonished. That one Man might have lived through such an Ordeal and come out all the better for it made for an amazing Tale. Not only did it make me question Morality, but it offered yet another Instance for the Superiority of the Personal Journey to Enlightenment. Rather than blindly accepting Religion, Crusoe proved through his Account that the most accurate Truth is one that is reached by one’s own Logic, not by that of the one thrust upon oneself. This Tale of Robinson Crusoe’s, should it reach Publication, would be quite the remarkable bit of pro Whig literature.

Curious, I questioned the Editor as to the Account’s validity, to which he was assured of wholeheartedly. However, I found such a leap of faith slightly beyond my Ability. Rather, I offered to extend my cultural Grand Tour to the exploration of Crusoe’s Island Colony in an effort to check his Claims and see with my own Eyes the Paradise he wrought. For, if what I read were Truth, then the Chronicles of Robinson Crusoe might indeed set Fire to London Culture.
Expectantly Yours, L



Dearest Gully,

I must say that my latest Expedition was quite thrilling. Landing here on the Island of Robinson Crusoe among his self made Colony, seeing the Actualization of Words on the Page bounding with Life before me was an Experience like no other. That Crusoe is a Master of Detail, down to the very last Twig. When I walked upon his Island with an Eye towards Exploration, it was with the Confidence of one having lived there many Years before.rc160.jpg


Being here, I now understand his Purpose in delineating every excruciating Facet, in providing the Reader with an entirely accurate Magnifying Lens. For, as true as his descriptions of the Island turn out to be, so too must his Encounters therein prove real. I can safely say with veracity that no Man capable of such Detail would embellish his Story. The two Concepts simply do not exist together.
And now being Inspired, I too wish to transcribe such a Journey, so that others may find Inspiration to see this World as I have. So it is with this Sentiment that my cultural Grand Tour ends, and I finally bid you Farewell.

I hope these Letters have conveyed My Gratitude towards you and the Life you lived. My Love reaches beyond the Veil, but I must press ever onwards. With Thoughts of you safely within my Mind, I make my way towards Tasmania. Perhaps there I will be able to realize the Actualization of the “larger than Life” situation with which my mind is now preoccupied.

Emboldenly Yours, Lemuel








References

Defoe, Daniel, and Evan R. Davis. Robinson Crusoe. Peterborough, Ont.: Broadview, 2010. Print.

Numb. I.” The Entertainer.6 November 1717:1. Eighteenth Century Journals.
Web. 25 November 2013.

“The London stage, 1660-1800; a calendar of plays, entertainments & afterpieces, together with casts, box-receipts and contemporary
comment.” Carbondale, Southern Illinois University Press, 1960-1968.

Cibber, Colley. The Non-juror: A Comedy. As it is Acted at the Theatre-Royal, by His Majesty's Servants. B. Lintot. At the
Cross-Keys in Fleetstreet. Google Books. Web. 23 November 2013.