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Book Details
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    Cover of Een Beytie Hollansche - James Boswell's Dutch Compositions, edited by C. C. Barfoot and K. J. Bostoen
Long title
Een Beytie Hollansche - James Boswell's Dutch Compositions
Year of 1st publication
Book description

During his studies in Leyden in 1763-64, Boswell practised Dutch in part by writing a series of small compositions resembling his journal entries. They consist of various observations, events, dialogues and everyday occurrences experienced by Boswell during his stay in Holland. 

This volume consists of all 20 compositions written by Boswell, with the Dutch version and an English translation of each, as well as a fairly thorough introduction to Boswell, his time in Holland and his project of learning Dutch, even though French was the language normally used in the circles in which he moved. 

In the words of the editors, "these short essays ... make fascinating reading because of their true Boswellian ring, that even in the poor Dutch is still clearly audible. His delicate touch, his self-ridicule, his humourous inward dialogues, his indignation at the injustice done to Dutch - Boswell's light-footedness and choice of themes could have taught several useful lessons to many Dutch authors of the period."

The book was produced by students of the 1994-95 Van Kopij tot Boek course, edited by C. C. Barfoot and K. J. Bostoen and published by Academic Press Leiden.


Een Beytie Hollansche was published in a limited number and it may be difficult to find a copy. Trying the AbeBooks used books search engine is probably the best option.