Posts Tagged ‘vale’

Vale Patrick Leigh Fermor

June 13, 2011

I was saddened last night when I was scrolling through my Twitter feed and saw the following post:

As a child of Greek migrants, I always looked for references to Greece in the books that I read. Both my parents were from the central and northern mountains of Greece, yet all the books I read were set on the islands or the Peloponnese. Then, aged 20, I discovered Patrick Leigh Fermor’s Roumeli: travels in Northern Greece. Imagine my delight to read tribal names that I had grown up hearing such as the Sarakatzan, and the Karagounides of Thessalia, the boyars of Moldowallacia (peculiarly enough my father was fluent in their language), the wandering quacks of Eurytania, and so many more.

Fermor opened my eyes to the rich variety of the peoples of Greece and, like Lord Byron before him, that the English seemed to be imbued with being philhellenes.

Along with many readers across the world, I fell in love with the rest of Fermor’s travel writing.His prose, his observations. Along with his writing, I love the vision of an early 20th century Englishman, carrying a volume of Horace, Oxford Book of English Verse and a sleeping bag walking across a mid-war Europe. A young adventurer discovering lands unknown, a war hero and ultimately, in his older age, a writer retelling his experiences.

“They’re written by a man of 50, looking back at a boy of 18, evoking the joy of travelling while young – that amazing, honeyed time.”  Travel writing great Patrick Leigh Fermor dies aged 96, Guardian 12 June, 2011

His blog has listed many obituaries from around the world. Fermor has inspired travel writers for many decades and I believe he will continue to inspire many more.

Vale Patrick Leigh Fermor.