Hilaire Belloc bought King's Land (in Shipley, Sussex), 5 acres and a working windmill for £1000 in 1907 and it was his home for the rest of his life. Belloc loved Sussex as few other writers have loved her: he lived there for most of his 83 years, he tramped the length and breadth of the county, slept under her hedgerows, drank in her inns, sailed her coast and her rivers and wrote several incomparable books about her. "He does not die that can bequeath Some influence to the land he knows, Or dares, persistent, interwreath Love permanent with the wild hedgerows; He does not die, but still remains Substantiate with his darling plains."

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Monday 28 April 2014

Cautionary Pilgrim - Walking Backwards with Belloc...

Nick Flint is Sussex born and bred, having lived half his life in the East and half in the West of theCounty. A parish priest in the Church of England for 25 years he is married with one daughter.

During the course of writing Cautionary Pilgrim he discovered he is distantly related to Mad Jack Fuller. He believes he is the first literary rector in his village since his predecessor in 1919 wrote Five Years’ Hell in a Country Parish.

ʻThe book has an extraordinary atmosphereʼ 


Satirist and Comedian from TVʼs

Bremner, Bird and Fortune

ʻA work of engaging wit and styleʼ 


Author of the I Never Knew That... books, 

now a TV series

ʻSoaked in the lore and animated by the Spirit

of Bellocʼ


Author of Faith Hope and Poetry, and 

Sounding the Seasons

ʻAn affectionate travelogue, punctuated with

delightful drawingsʼ


Dean Emeritus of Chichester Cathedral


The Rev. Nick Flint, The Rectory, Rusper, West Sussex RH12 4PX

Tel: 01293 871251 Email: revnickflint@gmail.com

Courtyard Cottage · Little Longstone · Bakewell · Derbyshire DE45 1NN
Tel: 01629 640670 Email: dickrichardson@country-books.co.uk
www.countrybooks.biz    www.sussexbooks.co.uk

ISBN 1-978-956789-93-0
Price £8.50

Wednesday 23 April 2014

''Hilaire Belloc Warns Moslems Aim to Destroy Zionism'' - Jewish Telegraphic Agency...

A warning that Palestine is an “island” in a “sea of Islam” which is determined to destroy the Zionist experiment is sounded by Hilaire Belloc, noted author and Catholic propagandist, writing in Universe, Catholic weekly.

While paying tribute to Zionist achievements, Mr. Belloc holds that “the whole position” of Palestine is “unstable. It stands like a pyramid upon its apex, only prevented from falling if the natural effect of gravity is counteracted by some one holding up the sides.”

He continues:

“The reason of this situation is mainly the attitude of all Islam towards the Zionist experiment. The boundary between Palestine and the French Syrian mandate is purely arbitrary. There is no natural frontier to the South either, and still less through the desert to the East.

“Though all Palestine were made Jewish tomorrow and all its native inhabitants deported, the new State would still be a little island drowned in a sea of Islam. For hundreds of miles in every direction there is a Mohammedan world which regards the Zionist movement as temporary and is determined to destroy it. The quarrel is not to be appeased. It is permanent; and that is why the Zionist experiment, in proportion to its success will be an increasing anxiety to this country.”

Mr. Belloc paid tribute to the achievement of Zionism in Palestine. “The Jews have a further asset,” he wrote, “which is that through them the English Government in Palestine is immensely prosperous. This little state has a surplus which amounts, I believe, to something like £5 a head, perhaps more.

“It is through this ceaseless incoming torrent of money that Great Britain has been able to build the fine new port of Haifa, for instance, the only modern and secure port upon the whole Levantine coast from the Turkish boundary to Alexandria, the only large and well-equipped port, capable of fortification and utilizable by modern armed vessels in all the eastern Mediterranean except Alexandria.”

The Jewish Telegraphic Agency
January 15, 1936

Monday 21 April 2014

''Hilaire Belloc Says Palestine May See New War'' - Jewish Telegraphic Agency (February 9, 1936).

Syria end Palestine, theatre of conflict between the East and the West for 3,000 years, may yet be the stage for another great religious war, declares Hilaire Belloc, noted English Catholic writer, in his new book, “The Battle Ground”, which has just been published here.

Declaring that Syria and Palestine are essentially one and that the political division of the land “contradicts the nature of things; therefore presumably, it cannot endure,” Belloc states that another reason why Western powers will not be able to maintain themselves on the bridge between Europe and Asia is that “the two masters to whom Syria was artificially given, the French and the English, are hostile rivals–potential enemies.”

The two powers, he declares, “have behind them no strength of religion. Their motive has been and remains in part the old modern exaggeration of nationalism, much more greed–the opportunity for economic advantage, particularly in oil, that dominating modern necessity which frames and underlines half our policy; oil, without which men cannot fly or maintain navies or travel by road.”

He continues; “Western rule, atrophied of religion, has to maintain itself in the face of hostile millions who, on their side, have not lost the religion which made them and by which they live. The French and English officials, the armed forces which obey them (and these are not numerous) stand isolated in the midst of a sea of Island all around.

“That same force which destroyed the Crusades is present in Syria today, and it is as active as ever. It is disarmed, or partly disarmed on the material side; but spiritually it is sufficiently armed. Whether Islam throughout the Eastern world, from the Atlantic to the Ganges, will recover material equality with us of the West we cannot tell; but there is no rational basis for denying the possibility of that resurrection. The Moslems contemporary with Richelieu and Cromwell were better armed than the French or English of their day. It may be questioned now whether Europe will now long maintain that modern supremacy over the Moslems which we have so long taken for granted.

“Moreover, in the face of the Moslems in the Near East, in Syria, the two Western Powers are divided one against the other, and even so the advantages of each are enviously watched by other powers of Europe, who will not admit the lion’s share to fall unchallenged to those who they regard as equals or inferiors.”

February 9, 1936

Jewish Telegraphic Agency

Tuesday 15 April 2014

'Our Lord and Our Lady'

By Eric Gill

They warned Our Lady for the Child
That was Our Blessed Lord, 
And She took Him into the desert wild, 
Over the camel's ford.

And a long song She sang to Him 
And a short story told: 
And she wrapped Him in a woollen cloak 
To keep Him from the cold. 

But when Our Lord was grown a man 
The rich they dragged Him down, 
And they crucified Him in Golgotha, 
Out and beyond the town.

They crucified Him on Calvary,
Upon an April day; 
And because He had been Her little Son
She followed Him all the way. 

Our Lady stood beside the Cross,
A little space apart, 
And when She heard Our Lord cry out
A sword went through her heart. 

They laid Our Lord in a marble tomb, 
Dead, in a winding sheet. 
But Our Lady stands above the world 
With the white moon at her feet.

From Verses, published in 1910.

Thursday 3 April 2014

Belloc's old home...

Belloc's Family home in the suburbs of Paris

A friend of mine was wandering around La Celle-Saint-Cloud, recently, and he took a picture of Belloc's old Family home. The area is now effectively part of Paris, whereas in 1870 it was outside the Capital. Belloc was born here on the 27th of July 1870 during a thunderstorm. Hence his early nick-name 'Old Thunder' (although this also had something to do with the fact that he was a noisy little fellow). The forces of Prussian militarism were just about to flatten France and, in the process, Prussian soldiers trashed his home on their way to Paris. Belloc never forgave the Prussians for this: hence his life-long loathing of Germania (by which he meant Prussia).

I have compared the photograph with an old illustration of his home. It's much as it was except for some plastering at the front, which covers some wooden timbers.