Chambers Book of Days

The other day I was reminded that in a box under the window-seat I have a tatty 2-volume book from 1866 called The Book of Days: a Miscellany of Popular Antiquities. It’s a collection of sayings, biographies, folklore and anything else that could be connected to a particular day or month, and is a rich store of randomness for a blog such as this. In July, it says, ‘We feel the harness chafe in which we have hitherto so willingly worked, amid the ‘fever and the fret’ of the busy city, and pine to get away to some place where we can hear the murmur of the sea, or what is nearest the sound – the rustle of the summer leaves’; some things don’t change, even if the sheep-shearing festivals it goes on to describe aren’t as common now. Expect some choice morsels over the next year.

The two volumes of The Book of Days


  1. I love books about random things- you can never know what they’re going to tell you when you open their covers! 🙂
    And I loved that passage, it truly shows that something never change…

    1. I guess these days it would be one of those bathroom books that people leave beside the toilet to dip into now and then. Though if you dropped it, it would probably crack the tiles…

    1. Old books do have a certain charm regardless of content. Remind me sometime and you can have a look – it leaves your fingers black if you look through too many pages though, I dread to think what’s built up on it over the last 140-odd years.

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