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About the Author: Washington Irving

Washington Irving was an American author, essayist, biographer and historian of the early 19th century. He began his literary career at the age of nineteen by writing newspaper articles under the pseudonym, "Jonathan Oldstyle."

In 1809, he published, The History of New York, under his most well known public persona, Diedrich Knickerbocker.

Irving is best known for his short stories, "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" and "Rip Van Winkle" both of which appear in his book, The Sketch Book of Geoffrey Crayon, Gent. which he published in 1819.

Irving's historical works include a five volume biography of George Washington (for whom he was named after) as well as biographies of Oliver Goldsmith, Muhammad, and several histories of 15th-century Spain dealing with subjects such as Christopher Columbus, the Moors, and the Alhambra. Irving felt a strong connection to Spain and was appointed by President John Tyler to serve as the first Spanish speaking U.S. minister to Spain from 1842 to 1846.


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Goodreads rating: 3.72

Hardcover, Published in Jul 2004 by Wildside Press

ISBN10: 0809595982 | ISBN13: 9780809595983

Page count: 108

There is something in the very season of the year that gives a charm to the festivity of Christmas. At other times we derive a great portion of our pleasures from the mere beauties of nature. Our feelings sally forth and dissipate themselves over the sunny landscape and we "live abroad and everywhere." The dreariness and desolation of the landscape, the short gloomy days and darksome nights, while they circumscribe our wanderings, shut in our feelings also from rambling abroad and make us more keenly disposed for the pleasures of the social circle. . . . The pitchy gloom without makes the heart dilate on entering the room filled with the glow and warmth of the evening fire. The ruddy blaze diffuses an artificial summer and sunshine through the room and lights up each countenance into a kindlier welcome. Where does the honest face of hospitality expand into a broader and more cordial smile -- where is the shy glance of love more sweetly eloquent -- than by the winter fireside?

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