Books studied in English

Share your memories and stories from the Hertford Christ's Hospital School, which closed in 1985, when the two schools integrated to the Horsham site....

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Re: Books studied in English

Post by jhopgood » Thu Mar 10, 2011 4:46 pm

Well off subject, but I did Henry V and two of the Canterbury Tales for "O" level. One was the Miller's Tale but I can't remember the other.
This inspired me to search for the papers on the internet and I was surprised to see that in an OXFORD AND CAMBRIDGE SCHOOLS EXAMINATION BOARD document, it mentions Examination papers set for individual schools - Christ’s Hospital - 1949

I wonder why?
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Re: Books studied in English

Post by icomefromalanddownunder » Thu Mar 10, 2011 11:27 pm

fra828 wrote:A very rare (!)cheer went up in the class when Miss Morrison announced that our set texts would be Jane Eyre, Macbeth , and poems of Thomas Hardy: 'when dunkery frowns on Exon Moor....' Can anyone else remember this poem? Wish I could find the Summer 1972 (London Board) O level Eng Lit paper online, for nostagia's sake!
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Re: Books studied in English

Post by J.R. » Fri Mar 11, 2011 1:07 pm

jhopgood wrote:Well off subject, but I did Henry V and two of the Canterbury Tales for "O" level. One was the Miller's Tale but I can't remember the other.
This inspired me to search for the papers on the internet and I was surprised to see that in an OXFORD AND CAMBRIDGE SCHOOLS EXAMINATION BOARD document, it mentions Examination papers set for individual schools - Christ’s Hospital - 1949

I wonder why?

Hernry V and St Joan, by Shaw, wasn't it John ?
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Re: Books studied in English

Post by jhope » Sat Jun 25, 2011 11:49 am

Katharine wrote: I know we all fell in love with Mr Rochester and we started calling the school surveyor (?) Mr Rochester! He was a mysterious man who appeared now and then, who looked at the buildings.
Hello Katharine. Better late than never (as I said, I don't visit the site as often as I should) but I thought you might like to know a bit more about the mysterious school surveyor. He was a family friend called Fred Hall, who lived with his elderly parents just across road from us in London. The firm he worked for was based in Dean's Yard. Westminster I think and he ended up looking after the school buildings because he knew Hertford having been evacuated there during the war - he went to Richard Hale.

Fred is still alive - in his early 80s now , still in touch with my mother - and he never married........!

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Re: Books studied in English

Post by sejintenej » Sat Jun 25, 2011 5:19 pm

When I did for O level it was Macbeth and Hardy's Trumpet Major. There was the option of one of Chaucer's tales but the teacher made the choice - thank goodness I didn't have to worry about Olde English. I did appreciate that Horsham would put on in Big School whatever Shakespeare play was set for the year.
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Re: Books studied in English

Post by Katharine » Sat Jun 25, 2011 8:12 pm

Thanks for that Julie! Was he very handsome, I can't really remember but I know all my year in Sixes fell for him - but we were rather sheltered from males of the species!
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Re: Books studied in English

Post by jhope » Mon Jun 27, 2011 2:54 pm

Hi Katharine - yes, he was - in an austere way. Have to say I had a bit of a thing for him myself. I have just watched a re-run of Jane Eyre on ITV3 (great channel!) with Ciaron Hinds as Mr Rochester - and in terms of looks, Fred wasn't unlike him. In terms of personality though Fred was as unlike Mr Rochester as you could get - very quiet and shy. Which made his visits to Hertford a bit of an ordeal I suspect!
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Re: Books studied in English

Post by Alexandra Thrift » Sun Jul 10, 2011 7:45 pm

Love the story about the school surveyor ! Unfortunately, he somehow never crossed my orbit ! He sounds more like a Mr Darcy than a Mr Rochester.

I loved "My Family and Other Animals" and, as a teenager, read every single word of every single Gerald Durrell book ( that was a lot of books). I adored "Cider With Rosie". We also read Tess of the D'Urbevilles and The Mayor of Casterbbridge so I read every single Hardy Novel ( as a teenager). Miss Richards read us "Jane Eyre" while we sat in silent terror doing our needlework. I love that book....must read it again. I'm sure the versions we read at school were well and truly abridged. We must have read a Dickens. ...David Copperfield ? We did "St Joan" and "Androcles" ( Mrs Betterton wasn't that keen on Shaw as she felt he spoiled the narrative by philosophising too much)....but Mrs Betterton did like Hardy's poems....the one I remember studying with her was something like " You did not come, and marching time drew on and wore me numb" ....it was about being stood up. We studied Macbeth, Hamlet , Richard 111, King Lear and Much Ado about Nothing....in the third year A Midsummer Night's Dream probably a few others too. We also covered an anthology of 20th C poems for O level , Causley, Hughes, Larkin, Betjeman , Dickinson, Stevie Smith , Plath. We read The Belljar and Catcher in the Rye as well as To Kill a Mockingbird and A member of The Wedding....or maybe I'm getting carried away. My own guilty pleasure at the time were Dennis Wheatley Black Magic stories of which there was a stash in the Infirmary...most unsuitable for Christian young ladies.

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Re: Books studied in English

Post by englishangel » Sun Jul 10, 2011 9:04 pm

Thanks Alex, I wondered where I had been introduced to Dennis Wheatley.

I don't remember "Catcher in the Rye" or "To Kill a Mockingbird" - no wonder I only just scraped English Lit O Level. I have rad them since when my daughter had them fro GCSE.

But who could forget 'Lord of the Flies' and 'Animal Farm'? Or have these been mentioned already?
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Re: Books studied in English

Post by Katharine » Sun Jul 10, 2011 9:32 pm

Alexandra Thrift wrote:Love the story about the school surveyor ! Unfortunately, he somehow never crossed my orbit ! He sounds more like a Mr Darcy than a Mr Rochester.
Perhaps he was more like Mr Darcy - but we didn't do Pride & Pred until two years later! (O levels for us were Pride & Pred, Animal Farm, Pygmalion and Twelfth Night) I still love Jane Austen and have the complete works in matching hardbacks.
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Re: Books studied in English

Post by Alexandra Thrift » Tue Jul 12, 2011 1:04 am

But who could forget 'Lord of the Flies' and 'Animal Farm'? Or have these been mentioned already?

Oops ! obviously I could forget them, Mary !

Actually, of all the books we studied , they were my least favourite. I wasn't
interested in Pigs and Horses speaking, or the political ramifications . At that age, for me , a story should be a story...not political analysis nor ( re: Lord of the Flies ) psycho-social allegory. I preferred escapist romance, idealised biography or black magic.

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Re: Books studied in English

Post by jhope » Mon Jul 18, 2011 4:44 pm

Can't remember To Kill A Mockingbird or Catcher in the Rye either - but Alex, thanks so much for reminding me of that beautiful Hardy poem.......it was one that I returned to tearfully several times in later years after disastrous love affairs!!

I still also love Under Milk Wood. And Paradise Lost. And, of course Chaucer - Troilus and Cressida remember how beautifully Mrs Betterton read it to us.

I seem to remember doing an awful lot of Shakespeare's history plays - didn't we have to read Richard II all the way through to Henry V just to set Henry IV part one (or was it part two?) in context. Was that for O level or A Level? -

As for guilty pleasures..... Anya Seton - particularly "Katharine" Didn't we all fall in love with John of Gaunt?!

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Re: Books studied in English

Post by englishangel » Mon Jul 18, 2011 6:36 pm

I think Anya Seton is mentioned elsewhere on here, I can still remember Katherine's 'hig wide brow' apparently not at all the thing in 1300 and whatever.

I was in the same class as you guys and I don't remember any Shakespeare Henrys at all. I would say that I was asleep but that was physics, so surely I didn't sleep through English as well!
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Re: Books studied in English

Post by Katharine » Mon Jul 18, 2011 7:17 pm

jhope wrote:As for guilty pleasures..... Anya Seton - particularly "Katharine" Didn't we all fall in love with John of Gaunt?!
Absolutely, Julie! I don't think she had the same spelling as me - Mary has her with an E after the H, I thought RYN but nothing changes how much we enjoyed it!
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Re: Books studied in English

Post by Terri » Mon Jul 18, 2011 7:46 pm

Anya Seton - that brings back memories. I don't think I've read anything by her since I left school. For even more of a guilty pleasure does anyone else remember the stock of Barbara Cartland books in 2's library? Those and quite a few Mills and Boon. That was about all there was and I must have read them all during rainy Saturday afternoons. I doubt Miss Morrison would have approved, but then she didn't approve of much that I did! Clearly they thought them suitable reading for young ladies!
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