"Lady Mary Wortley Montagu in Istanbul
Sunday December 26, 2010
Grandeur: Anachronisms aside, Lady Mary Wortley Montagu was impressed with the beautiful asymmetry of Istanbul when she visited in 1718.
Amazing what one may find at a Dollar Store in the middle of a Floridian wasteland. The other day I was with my son and the rest of my family in a neighborhood Dollar Store to pick him out a couple of items I've already forgotten about, principally because I was slightly stunned, first, to see books sold in the store (an arresting moment in a state with sprawls of real estate where books, like bookstores, are a rarity), and second, to see, alongside the requisite slews of inspirational, diet-ridden and Harlequinic claptrap, an Everyman's Library edition of--no kidding---Mary Wortley Montagu's Letters. I opened the volume at random, and there and then I was transported to Constantinople (present-day Istanbul), three centuries ago, where Lady Montagu happened to be visiting:"
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