The Romantic Imagination

  • Keith C. Sewell
Part of the Studies in Modern History book series (SMH)

Abstract

As a youth Butterfield absorbed the self-educational literature acquired by his father, as well as detective stories and ‘innumerable sentimental novels’ such as those of Alexandre Dumas. His father’s Methodism was consistent with an emotive romantic disposition. His first aspiration was to be a writer. In Herbert this came to expression in a love of Beethoven, old York and the moors.1 However, Butterfield’s secondary school was not congenial to one harbouring literary intentions. It was an institution founded by industrialists and intended for those seeking a future in manufacturing. The emphasis was on mathematics and the natural sciences, not the humanities. Contrary to this tradition, Butterfield aspired to the study of the classics, even as his headmaster urged the merits of mathematics. The turning point came when his headmaster proposed history as a compromise. The young man’s initial response was unenthusiastic and confirms that his aversion to dry-as-dust history was that of a young romantic, pre-dating his arrival at Cambridge.2 Much of Butterfield’s subsequent methodological writing was concerned with relating his basically romantic approach to the requirements of both academic history and his religious standpoint.

Keywords

Manifold Europe Ethos Prose Proval 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Notes

  1. 2.
    ‘Universal History and the Comparative Study of Civilization’, in Sir Herbert Butterfield, Cho Yun Hsu and William H. McNeill on Chinese and World History, ed. N. H. Fehl (1971), pp. 26–7; cf. CH, pp. 11–12.Google Scholar
  2. 26.
    HN, p. 105; cf. David Lowenthal, The Past is A Foreign Country (1985), esp. pp. 185, 216, 226–7.Google Scholar
  3. 28.
    Cf. David Hume, Enquiries Concerning Human Understanding and Concerning the Principles of Morals, ed. L. A. Selby Bigge (1975), pp. 83–4.Google Scholar
  4. 46.
    Cf. H. W. V. Temperley, The Life of Canning (1905); and John D. Fair, Harold Temperley (1992), pp. 181–9.Google Scholar
  5. 50.
    SMH, p. 2; cf. UET, p. 5; ‘Harold Temperley and George Canning’, in H. W. V. Temperley, The Foreign Policy of Canning 1822–1827 (1966), p. xxi; and ‘Introduction to the Second Edition’, in Harold W. V. Temperley, Frederic the Great and Kaiser Joseph (1968), p. ix. See also G. P. Gooch, ‘Historical Novels’, Contemporary Review 117 (1920), 204–12.Google Scholar
  6. Harold W. V. Temperley, Frederic the Great and Kaiser Joseph (1968), p. ix.Google Scholar
  7. See also G. P. Gooch, ‘Historical Novels’, Contemporary Review 117 (1920), 204–12.Google Scholar
  8. H. W. V. Temperley, ‘Maurus Jokai and the Historical Novel’, Contemporary Review 86 (1904), 107–14; and Foreign Historical Novels (1929).Google Scholar
  9. 52.
    PTN, pp. 3–4, 9–11. Cf. Savoie Lottinville, The Rhetoric of History (1976), p. 96.Google Scholar
  10. Lottinville, ‘Sir Herbert Butterfield as a Narrative Historian’, in Herbert Butterfield: The Ethics of History and Politics (1980), pp. 20–30.Google Scholar
  11. 55.
    F. Crossfield Happold, The Approach to History (1928), p. 37.Google Scholar
  12. 56.
    HN, p. 27; cf. ‘Introduction to the Second Edition’, in H. W. V. Temperley, Frederic the Great and Kaiser Joseph (1968), p. xix.Google Scholar
  13. 57.
    SMH, pp. 3–4; ‘Harold Temperley and George Canning’, in H. W. V. Temperley, The Foreign Policy of Canning 1822–1827 (1966), pp. xi-xvii.Google Scholar
  14. Cf. G. W. V. Temperley and Charles K. Webster, ‘The Duel between Castlereagh and Canning in 1809’, CHJ 3 (1929), 83–95.Google Scholar
  15. 60.
    ‘Harold Temperley and George Canning’, in H. W. V. Temperley, The Foreign Policy of Canning 1822–1827 (1966), p. ix.Google Scholar
  16. 62.
    ‘Introduction to the Second Edition’, in H. W. V. Temperley, Frederic the Great and Kaiser Joseph (1968), p. xxi.Google Scholar
  17. 64.
    Temperley’s Life of Canning (1905) should be compared with his more sober The Foreign Policy of Canning, 1822–1827 (1925).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Keith C. Sewell 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Keith C. Sewell
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of HistoryDordt CollegeUSA

Personalised recommendations