Annual Volume 20 (1990)
THE YOUTH AND MANHOOD OF CYRIL THORNTON
by Thomas Hamilton
Edited by Maurice Lindsay
Published in: Hardback.
By: Association for Scottish Literary Studies, Aberdeen, 1990.
This title is now OUT OF PRINT
The Youth and Manhood of Cyril Thornton, first published by Blackwood in 1827, gives a remarkably vivid evocation of merchant life in Glasgow, and of life in the old Glasgow University, just before the full onset of the Industrial Revolution. It is on the whole a warmly sympathetic portrait, though Scots foibles, as pertinent today as they were nearly two centuries ago, are gently satirised. The novel also gives an account of the confusion and futility which characterises all wars, as experienced during the earlier part of the Peninsular campaign, in which the author was a serving officer.
The author, Thomas Hamilton, served as an officer in an infantry regiment during the Peninsular War, and was badly wounded. He retired on half pay in 1818, and quickly established himself as onle of the leading writers for Blackwood’s Magazine. Renting Lockhart’s cottage next to Abbotsford, Hamilton was soon on friendly terms with Sir Walter Scott. When, after the death of his first wife and his remarriage, Hamilton settled in the Lake District, he enjoyed a similar relationship with the more aloof Wordsworth: ‘the bard’, as he called the poet.
Typeset by Oxford University Computing Services. Printed by Bell & Bain, Glasgow