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"Lepanto" by G K Chesterton (poetry reading)

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Uploaded on Aug 14, 2010

It sounds better with low volume. Those who have Strong Views about Lepanto with regard to Political Correctness, Religious Significance and Social Relevance should not post them here. People who like poetry really won't care.

It was a popular poem in its day. It was written in 1915 about The Battle of Lepanto which was in 1571. What it means is now irrelevant. The most important thing about Lepanto is its Flights of Rhetoric and Romping, Rollicking Metre. You can hear how it influenced other poems. Casey At The Bat, for instance.

I'd rate this reading only 2 out of 5. It goes at breakneck speed and I misread a few words. It's nigh impossible to correct them. This feller does it better, I think, and you can listen to him while following my text with the sound off.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z62ELB...

"slaughter-painted poop" refers to the rear end of a ship, not what you might have thought.

There have been negative reactions. Here's George Orwell:
"Chesterton was a writer of considerable talent who whose to suppress both his sensibilities and his intellectual honesty in the cause of Roman Catholic propaganda. During the last twenty years or so of his life, his entire output was in reality an endless repetition of the same thing, under its laboured cleverness as simple and boring as 'Great is Diana of the Ephesians.' Every book that he wrote, every scrap of dialogue, had to demonstrate beyond the possibility of mistake the superiority of the Catholic over the Protestant or the pagan. But Chesterton was not content to think of this superiority as merely intellectual or spiritual: it had to be translated into terms of national prestige and military power, which entailed an ignorant idealisation of the Latin countries, especially France. Chesterton had not lived long in France, and his picture of it—as a land of Catholic peasants incessantly singing the Marseillaise over glasses of red wine—had about as much relation to reality as Chu Chin Chow has to everyday life in Baghdad. And with this went not only an enormous overestimation of French military power (both before and after 1914-18 he maintained that France, by itself, was stronger than Germany), but a silly and vulgar glorification of the actual process of war. Chesterton's battle poems, such as Lepanto or The Ballad of Saint Barbara, make The Charge of the Light Brigade read like a pacifist tract: they are perhaps the most tawdry bits of bombast to be found in our language." and so on...
http://www.netcharles.com/orwell/essa...

The painting of Lepanto was by Yogesh Brahmbhatt, I don't know exactly when. He was probably alive at the time, though.

The final still of the "lean and foolish knight" whose name you ought to know, came from a Spanish Movie of the Same Name that you ought to know.

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