Spain through True Blue Eyes

By Carr, Raymond | The Spectator, March 6, 2004 | Go to article overview

Spain through True Blue Eyes


Carr, Raymond, The Spectator


Spain through true blue eyes RICHARD FORD, 1796-1858 by Ian Robertson Michael Russell, £28, pp. 381, ISBN 0859552853

Richard Ford is now a forgotten figure and we must be grateful to Ian Robertson for bringing him to life in this scholarly biography. His Handbook for Travellers in Spain was published in 1845 by John Murray as one of his guides for the middle-class tourists who had replaced the aristocrats of the Grand Tour. It must count as the most learned, long and lively guidebook ever published: a monster of 1,064 pages. But his interests extended beyond his hispanophile concerns and expertise on Spanish painting, making him a much respected figure in London literary and artistic circles in the early years of Queen Victoria.

Ford early made picture-buying Grand Tours. But he was not a landed aristocrat, rather a well-heeled member of the professional upper-middle class with aristocratic connections; a Wykehamist, he sent his son to Eton. In 1824 he married the illegitimate daughter of the Earl of Essex. It was not a success, but it was to give his delicate wife the benefits of a warm climate that he went to Spain in 1830, to remain there for three years. His notebooks and sketches provided the raw material for the Handbook. But as Robertson's map of his travels reveals, there were large areas of Spain he could not cover in his travels. To plug the gaps he relied on books - he had a fine library - and his extensive correspondence with Spaniards. His vivid descriptions of unvisited towns left his readers with the impression that they were the result of personal inspection.

The gaps and this modest confidence trick were of little importance. He strove to present Spain on its own terms, but the strong prejudices which he shared with his unblemished hero the Duke of Wellington, whose campaigns are a main concern of the Handbook he cannot conceal. Take for example his devastating attacks on the Spanish aristocracy whom Wellington despised as 'uneducated and untravelled', 'popinjay butterflies', absentee landlords who allow noble 'patios' with their artistic treasures to become 'farmyards and dung heaps'. His francophobia turns the Handbook into a catalogue of the destruction and looting of Spain's artistic heritage by French generals in the Peninsular war. After his last visit to Paris, when France was our ally in the Crimean war, he writes, 'I have come back hating the French worse than ever.'

While he admires Castile, his portrait of Catalonia is a crude caricature, 'no place for a man of pleasure, taste or literature. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Spain through True Blue Eyes
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.