The Posts I’ll Never Get To Write

I had always more ideas for posts than time to write them and now I have run out of time completely. I always assumed that my writing output would eventually catch up with the constant influx of ideas during my retirement but as it turns out I will not live to retire¹. So if you’ve ever enjoyed this blog, here are some of the topics that I was going to write about had I lived longer: you might enjoy delving into them in your free time. You know – some not so well-known books to read, the unlikely life stories of some historical persons of whom you’ve never heard, commentary on poetry, life advice from a distance of millenia… the sort of stuff Waterblogged is all about. 

1. Advice from Ancient Rome & Advice from Ancient Greece

Ancient authors have given us many bons mots. A collection of snappy lines, practical advice or philosophical statements, from the inscriptions over the temple of Apollo in Delphi to the speeches of Seneca would make an entertaining, thought-provoking reading.

Similar Posts that I Did Write:
The Master of Cold Mountain
The Dark Side of Life (In Nine Haikus)

Quotes from Great Travellers in History

If you like travelling and you like history, then reading the diaries of travellers from earlier times is a real treat. To be sure, some of them would make climbing Mount Everest sound dull, but there were plenty out there who could tell a tale. Some of them have been frequently cited on this blog and I intended to write an introductory post to bring great travellers’ tales together.

Similar Posts that I Did Write:
The Burning Mountain of Huexotzingo
Thirty Pieces of Silver
Felix in the Bath

A Walk with Gerald Brennan in the Sierra Nevada

Gerald Brennan was an English author who wrote several very good books about life in Spain in the first half of 20th century and about Spanish history, as well, as the 1936-39 Civil War. After he was demobbed at the end of World War I, Brennan lived in Andalusia for several years and he’s very picturesque descriptions of the area as it then was, not to mention the people and the customs, is well worth reading. I particularly recommend South from Granada. As Brennan also maintained himself on the periphery of the Bloomsbury Group, the visits of his London friends to his house in Spain, occasionally provide a somewhat unexpected and bizarre counterpoint to the rest of the book.  

For this particular post I had in mind chapter 14 of Brennan’s South from Granada. The title should speak for itself. 🙂 A treat for hikers.

Lost in a Book

Literally or metaphorically – which book would it be for you?

Similar Posts that I Did Write:
They that Go Down to the Sea in Ships
Books That Transport You

The Unlikely but True Story of Móric Benyovszky, the Hungarian King of Madagascar

The title says it all: it’s a very unlikely but true story of a minor Hungarian nobleman who had to flee home in the 18th century and ended up becoming king of Madagascar.

Similars Posts that I Did Write:
Brother Julianus: Quest for the Lost Homeland
Implacabile: The Corvette that Never Was

Stories in the Dark

A reading list upon the theme of – dark. 🙂

There could be so many variations on this… Night time stories, space stories, gothic horror… the darkness of the man’s soul.

Similar Posts that I Did Write:
Dark & Moody
Submarine!

The Man Who Foresaw the Future

The stories of Jules Verne were not simply cracking adventures but he also described things as yet uninvented: travelling by submarine, going to the Moon, flying aeroplanes…

Similar Posts that I Did Write:
The Three (Spanish) Musketeers
Who's Who (Obscure Authors)

The Dictionary 

A poor lonely Hungarian, without applause or money but inspired with enthusiasm sought the Hungarian native country but in the end broke down under the burden.

Count István Széchenyi

Back in the beginning a 19th century, there was a very poor young man from Transylvania who wanted to find out about the origins of the Hungarians. Where? In Tibet, of all places. He made his way to Ladakh and ended up writing the first Tibetan-English dictionary and grammar. Today, he is considered the founding father of Tibetology… and in 1933, he was declared a boddhisattva (a Buddhist saint, in effect).

The strange and ascetic life of a brilliant and obsessed recluse scholar, Sándor Kőrösi Csoma.

Similar Posts that I Did Write:
Part of the Folk Process
The View from the Ivory Tower
Beats Working in a Bank

The Final Days of Suleyman the Magnificent

If you bothered to read my recent History of Hungary in a Dozen Maps, then you should have an idea of what this post would have been about! 🙂

Ten Proverbs To Live Your Life By

Could you think of ten proverbs that sums up your beliefs and would work as life advice for your children?

A Similar Post that I Did Write:
Seven Quasi-Religious Sayings to Annoy Your Children With

The Sea! The Sea!

One of my favourite military history books is Anabasis, also known as The March of the Ten Thousand by Xenophon. It tells the story of ten thousand Greek mercenaries fleeing all the way from the heart of the Persian Empire after a lost battle, marching across hostile territory, fighting their ways through hostile mountain tribes, suffering hunger and cold, relentlessly pursued by the Persian army. It’s a great story of endurance, of landscapes and of everything ancient Greek. I was really hoping to get the Landmark edition of Xenophon to accompany my Landmark Herodotus – with maps and notes and illustrations and essays in the appendices. It was to be published last November but, perhaps because of coronavirus, it’s now not going to published till next November. Too late for me… but not for you.

Similar Posts that I Did Write:
Save the Trinidad (The Unwritten Biography of Cayetano Valdés)
Hero Under the Death Sentence
The (Novel) Life of Britain's Greatest Frigate Captain

The Definitive Reading Guide to the Best Stories of Herodotus

More best of Herodotus – Of course! 

Don’t be frightened by the size of the Histories. I bet you read lots of longer books (which were a lot worse too, like perhaps, Game of Thrones?) All the good stories are there in the Histories, you just have to find them. The trick is to pick it up and dip into it every now and then. But how I would have liked to have written the definite reading guide to the most entertaining stories of Herodotus! 

Similar Posts that I Did Write:
The Best Stories of Herodotus (And Why You're Going to Read Them)
An Evening with Herodotus

And the Best Stories of…. 

…many others.

There are authors you just have to keep going back to. Like Herodotus above. The likes of Felix Fabri, Bernal Díaz del Castillo, John Smith (he of Pocahontas fame), and others. Some of them had appeared on the blog already, some, like John Smith, never got beyond my notes. But I would have liked to write more about them all, because they tell cracking tales!

Hungarian Historical Legends

We’ve got so many really entertaining ones – and they are so little known!

Notes:
¹ I'm terminally ill and have only a very short time left. You can read a little about it in my post Open Letter To My Oncologist

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