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Selected Cautionary Verses
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Selected Cautionary Verses

really liked it 4.0  ·  Rating details ·  39 Ratings  ·  5 Reviews
A fantastic collection of poems for children.
paperback, 181 pages
Published 1953 by Puffin (first published 1950)
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Peter Bird
I only got as far as reading "About John" by accident as I was shelving it. It cracked me up all day. I loved it! I am still reading the same poem, hours later, and it still makes me laugh. I really must move on...
Jan 27, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Much more amusing for adults than for children; I think this was wasted on me the first time I read it in August 1973. Best bit? '...little Bill who came between/ Was quite unnaturally keen/ On 'Athalie', by Jean Racine...'
Erin Britton
May 21, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Cataloguing the lives and bountiful (self caused) misfortunes of various children, the Cautionary Verses are unforgettable rhymes championing a subversively moral attitude to life that will both amuse and grip the attention of adults and children alike. As well as causing uproarious laughter, this book could well have great societal impact since, if we had not received fair (rhyming) warning, how many of us would have run away from home like Jim and met our fate in the belly of a lion?
Oct 27, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Grandparents to explore with their grandchildren
Though now somewhat dated, this remains a lovely collection to dip in and out of because Belloc’s verse is simply so fascinating.

Take “The microbe” for example. Firstly, how many poets write about microbial life? Not many that I’m aware of. And yet even just four lines rolling off the tongue:

“…His jointed tongue that lies beneath
A hundred curious rows of teeth;
His sevn tufted tails with lots
Of lovely pink and purple spots, …”

is more than enough to set the imagination reeling. Not just a hundred
Peter Jones
Such fun to read. Good old Hillaiure Belloc!
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Joseph Hilaire Pierre René Belloc was an Anglo-French writer and historian who became a naturalised British subject in 1902. He was one of the most prolific writers in England during the early twentieth century. He was known as a writer, orator, poet, satirist, man of letters, and political activist. He is most notable for his Catholic faith, which had a strong impact on most of his works and his ...more
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