of his Hand"
by David Page)
|notes on the text|
There was to be a weekly edition of the Pioneer for Home consumption. Would I edit it, additional to ordinary work? Would I not? There would be fiction—syndicated serial-matter bought by the running foot from agencies at Home. That would fill one whole big page. The ‘sight of means to do ill deeds’ had the usual effect. Why buy Bret Harte, I asked, when I was prepared to supply home-grown fiction on the hoof? And I did.Kipling expressed his enthusiasm for Bret Harte on other occasions in Something of Myself, and makes several references to him and his works in From Sea to Sea. In a letter to his sister of 8 March 1931 he is still quoting from one of Bret Harte’s stories, “Baby Sylvester” in reference to his poem, “Akbar’s Bridge” (Limits and Renewals):
Now I have set the verses aside to drain—all same cheese. At the end of a few weeks it—like Baby Sylvester— will “yield a thin treacle.” Which means I shall be able to make it shorter by a verse or two.Bare-knuckle fighting was still common in 1889 although there were attempts to ban prizefights, and boxing with gloves was just starting to come in. One of the best known of the fighters of the time was John L. Sullivan (1858-1918), an Irish-American, who won a major bout in July of that year near Richburg, Mississippi. (http://www.cyberboxingzone.com/boxing/sully.htm)
(The Letters of Rudyard Kipling, Vol.6, ed T. Pinney, p.23).