Who said: "Good as it is to inherit a library, it is better to collect one."

BookBrowse's Favorite Quotes

"Good as it is to inherit a library, it is better to collect one." - Augustine Birrell

Augustine BirrelllAugustine Birrell (1850-1933) was an English author and politician. Having graduated from Trinity Hall, Cambridge, he qualified as a lawyer and, after a short sojourn as a professor of law, entered parliament as a Liberal representing Fife West in Scotland. His light but pointed sense of humor when addressing The House of Commons, and his witty essays, coined the word birrelling (a word which regrettably has not stood the test of time, at least not to the point that it is one of the 163,000 words in today's Shorter Oxford English Dictionary). In addition to a number of books of essays, he also penned biographies of Charlotte Bronte, William Hazlitt and Andrew Marvell.

At the 1900 general election he chose to contest the Manchester North East seat rather than Fife, but was defeated. He was returned to parliament in 1906 as the member of parliament for Bristol North and became President of the Board of Education; but prolonged controversy over an education bill caused him to fall out of favor and he was transferred to the post of Chief Secretary for Ireland where, in 1907, he introduced an Irish Councils bill which would have been a step towards home rule. The bill was rejected by a Nationalist convention and was promptly withdrawn.

He continued as Chief Secretary for Ireland for nine years, resigning in 1916 after failing to contain the plotting that ended in the Easter Uprising (the most significant Irish uprising since 1798). He did not defend his seat in the 1918 general election.

More Quotes

This quote & biography originally ran in an issue of BookBrowse's membership magazine. Full Membership Features & Benefits.

One-Month Free Membership

Discover your next great read here

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket
    Ghachar Ghochar
    by Vivek Shanbhag
    The Bengaluru (aka Bangalore) that has dominated economic news headlines over the past decade is the...
  • Book Jacket: Caught in the Revolution
    Caught in the Revolution
    by Helen Rappaport
    So taken were BookBrowse's First Impression reviewers by the inside look at the start of the Russian...
  • Book Jacket: Hillbilly Elegy
    Hillbilly Elegy
    by J.D. Vance
    In this illuminating memoir, Vance recounts his trajectory from growing up a "hillbilly" in ...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
The Atomic Weight of Love
by Elizabeth J. Church

In the spirit of The Aviator's Wife, this resonant debut spans from World War II through the Vietnam War.

About the book
Join the discussion!

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    Lola
    by Melissa Scrivner Love

    An astonishing debut crime thriller about an unforgettable woman.
    Reader Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    Our Short History
    by Lauren Grodstein

    Lauren Grodstein breaks your heart, then miraculously pieces it back together so it's stronger, than before.
    Reader Reviews

Who Said...

If we did all the things we are capable of, we would literally astound ourselves

Click Here to find out who said this, as well as discovering other famous literary quotes!

Word Play

Solve this clue:

O My D B

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.

 
Modal popup -