Punch,  61 (1871), 149.

Country Letter

Marmaduke Boringham


Letter, Spoof


Education, Natural History, Collecting, Agriculture, Cruelty, Meteorology, Reading, Measurement

Publications cited:

Journal of the Royal Agricultural Society

    The writer gives his relative, Algernon, some hints about how to spend his vacation on his cousin's farm. Being passionate about self-improvement, his suggestions include devoting himself to some 'rational pursuit' such as natural history, and making himself 'an authority on the particular creatures you select for investigation'. He also suggests that Algernon interest himself in 'agricultural operations and inquire into such specific topics as crop rotation, corn averages, and irrigation, subsoils, the newest improvements in implements, and the cultivation of Italian rye-grass'. He recommends gathering statistical information from agricultural labourers and participating in some of the 'minor operations of agriculture'. (149) Finally, he suggests reading books and periodicals on agriculture and keeping a record of various meteorological phenomena, including 'the wind, the clouds, electrical phenomena, mock suns, lunar rainbows, auroras, &c'.

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