A Sussex Alphabet
A Sussex Alphabet
Eleanor Farjeon’s collection of poems A Sussex Alphabet was first published in 1924 as a series of articles for the West Sussex Gazette. The poems were later set to music by her brother Harry and then, in 1939, appeared together in book form as an exquisite limited edition, a facsimile of which appears here. Farjeon visited Sussex frequently and these verses reflect her deep love and knowledge of the county. Encompassing characters, folklore and landscape they create an enchanting blend of fantasy, realism and humour – brilliantly capturing the essence of this unique and exhilarating county. Gypsies, shepherds and literary giants all appear between these pages, along with towns, villages and the peculiarities of local dialect. An excerpt from her 1918 poem All The Way To Alfriston, now one of the most visited villages in Britain, rounds off this stylish volume. As we ramble around the Sussex countryside today, we can still see much of what Farjeon saw and wrote about nearly 100 years ago. We hope this charming collection will reawaken an interest in her work and encourage you to visit the places that inspired these delightful verses.
- A facsimile capturing the essence of Sussex as it was one hundred years ago.
- Eleanor Farjeons’ creative ramble across the South Downs celebrated in 26 poems.
- An inspirational landscape now embraced as the South Downs National Park.
- A lasting testament to Sussex.
ISBN: 978-1-906022-19-8, 187mm x 115mm, 56 pages including a facsimile 1939 edition of A Sussex Alphabet originally published by The Pear Tree Press, hardback
Eleanor Farjeon (1881-1965) is probably best known today for penning the lyrics of the children’s hymn Morning Has Broken, popularised so beautifully by Cat Stevens in 1971. She occupies an important place in children’s literature and produced over 80 works, including stories, plays, poems, biography, history and satire. Her most famous book, Martin Pippin and the Apple Orchard, is set in Sussex, a county she often visited and celebrated in her work. She was well known in literary circles; DH Lawrence, Walter de la Mare, Edward Thomas and Robert Frost were all numbered among her friends. Today she is remembered each year when The Eleanor Farjeon Award is presented by the Children’s Book Circle in recognition of an outstanding contribution to the world of children’s books.