July 19: On the advice of his lawyers, Emile Zola flees Frances following his conviction for libel after making accusations of a cover-up by the military. He arrives in London’s Victoria station on this day in 1898.

July 20: Desperate to make money after some failed business ventures, Mark Twain travels around the world and send dispatches home to a loyal American audience. His book Innocents Abroad is published on this day in 1869.

July 21: On this day in 1796, the man who will become known as Scotland’s poet, Robert Burns dies at age 37 in Dumfries. The picture at the beginning of this post is in Edinburgh in the alleyway where Burns once lived.

July 22: Percy Bysshe Shelley registers at a Mont Blanc hotel on this day in 1816 and by the end of the month begins formulating his poem Mont Blanc. The poem about man and mountain was a response to William Wordsworth evaluation of nature after seeing Tintern Abbey

July 23: Jail time for Henry David Thoreau on this day in 1846 after he refuses to pay his $1 tax bill in protest of slavery and American involvement in the Mexican War. The experience inspires Thoreau to write Civil Disobedience.

July 24: In a letter to his publisher Bennett Cerf on this day in 1940, William Faulkner bemoans the lack of competition emerging from a younger generation of writers. “What has happened to writing anyway? Hemingway and Dos Passos and I are veterans now; we should be fighting tooth and toenail to hold our places against young writers. But there are no young writers worth a damn that I know of. I think of my day. There were Lewis and Dreiser and Sherwood Anderson and so forth, and we were crowding the hell out of them. But now there doesn’t seem to be enough pressure behind us to keep Dos Passos and Hemingway writing even.”

July 25: The first entry in Anais Nin’s diary, who is 11 years old at the time, is made on this day in 1914 as her family is about to depart Spain for the United States. Apart from a four month stop three years later, she will continue making journal entries until her death.


Leave a reply


Your email address will not be published.