“Mr. Farnsworth has written an original and absorbing guide to English style. Get it if you can.”—The Wall Street Journal
Say it with style—on paper or in person.
This book explains why the best writing sounds that way, with hundreds of examples from Lincoln, Churchill, and other masters of the language. Farnsworth shows how small choices about words, sentences, and paragraphs put force into writing and speech that have stood the test of time. This is must for anyone who wants to speak or write with clear, persuasive, enjoyable, unforgettable style.
Praise for Classical English Style
“Farnsworth’s Classical English Style is a storehouse of effective writing, showing the techniques you may freely adapt to make music of your own.”
—The Baltimore Sun
“Farnsworth’s Classical English Style is a worthy rejoinder to [Strunk & White’s] The Elements of Style. . .[it] provides some deeper and more useful axioms of writing. . . [the book] is a Molotov cocktail wrapped in paisley; a hand-grenade cushioned in madras.”
—The Millions (Full Review)
“For writers aspiring to master the craft, Farnsworth shows how it’s done. For lovers of language, he provides waves of sheer pleasure.”
“An eloquent study of the very mechanisms of eloquence.”
“A great and edifying pleasure.”
“…the overriding rule of style is ‘to keep solely in view the thought one wants to convey.’ Page after delightful page, Farnsworth showcases age-old ways for doing just that.”
—Cory L. Andrews, Russell Kirk Center for Cultural Renewal (Full Review)
Praise for Other Farnsworth Titles
“I must refrain from shouting what a brilliant work this is (præteritio). Farnsworth has written the book as he ought to have written it—and as only he could have written it (symploce). Buy it and read it—buy it and read it (epimone).”
—Bryan A. Garner, Garner’s Modern English Usage
“The most immediate pleasure of this book is that it heightens one’s appreciation of the craft of great writers and speakers. Mr. Farnsworth includes numerous examples from Shakespeare and Dickens, Thoreau and Emerson, Winston Churchill and Abraham Lincoln. He also seems keen to rehabilitate writers and speakers whose rhetorical artistry is undervalued; besides his liking for Chesterton, he shows deep admiration for the Irish statesman Henry Grattan (1746-1820), whose studied repetition of a word (“No lawyer can say so; because no lawyer could say so without forfeiting his character as a lawyer”) is an instance, we are told, of conduplicatio. But more than anything Mr. Farnsworth wants to restore the reputation of rhetorical artistry per se, and the result is a handsome work of reference.”
—Henry Hitchings, Wall Street Journal
“This sturdy and engaging introductory text consists mostly of excerpts from the ancient Greek and Roman Stoic philosophers, especially Seneca (4 BCE–65), Epictetus (c. 55–135) through his student Arrian, and Marcus Aurelius (121–80) as well as that trio’s philosophical confreres, from the earlier Hellenic Stoics and Cicero to such contemporaries as Plutarch to moderns, including Montaigne, Adam Smith, and Schopenhauer… A philosophy to live by, Stoicism may remind many of Buddhism and Quakerism, for it asks of practitioners something very similar to what those disciplines call mindfulness.”
“As befits a good Stoic, Farnsworth’s expository prose exhibits both clarity and an unflappable calm… Throughout The Practicing Stoic, Farnsworth beautifully integrates his own observations with scores of quotations from Epictetus, Seneca, Marcus Aurelius, Montaigne and others. As a result, this isn’t just a book to read—it’s a book to return to, a book that will provide perspective and consolation at times of heartbreak or calamity.”
—Michael Dirda, The Washington Post
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