Summary and Info
The writer and recipient of these engaging letters, Alexander Chisholm Gooden (born 1817), went up to Trinity College, Cambridge in 1836, having previously been educated at the University of London. A glittering academic career beckoned; he was top of the Classical Tripos in 1840, and in the following year went to Germany to read for a Trinity fellowship, but died tragically early from peritonitis after rowing on the Rhine.The 169 letters between Gooden and his family and friends collected in this volume constitute a rich and hitherto unknown source for student life in Cambridge in the 1830s. They cover a wide range of topics: friendships, local politics, accommodation, clothing and bills, the personalities and vagaries of dons, and Gooden's health. They also give a detailed picture of his career as a student of classics and mathematics, and, after his examination success in 1840, as a private tutor to undergraduates.The differences between Cambridge and London styles of scholarship caused difficulties for Gooden; they offer the reader an unusual and interesting light on his struggle to succeed at Trinity.
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