BAR 19:01, Jan/Feb 1993
Queries & Comments
Pascal, Not G. B. Shaw, on Prolixity
Your insightful and informative review of The Anchor Bible Dictionary, (see Books in Brief, BAR 18:05), suggested George Bernard Shaw as the source of the quote: I would have written you a shorter letter, but I didnt have time. Actually the statement should be credited to Blaise Pascal: In his Lettres Provinciales (1657), the French mathematician and theologian wrote, I have made this letter longer than usual, only because I have not had the time to make it shorter.
I mention this not to be pedantic, but to stress that I find the Books in Brief reviewsno matter what their lengthto be a rewarding read. On the other hand, a little innocent prolixity is easily forgiven whether it comes from Pascal, or Shaw, or the Anchor Bible editors, or even from one of your deadline-stressed reviewers. My compliments on a quality journal.
Robert J. Branda
Professor of English
Rock Valley College
BAR Thrown into the Trash Where It Belongs