Author Topic: Barrie's father  (Read 4847 times)

andrew

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Barrie's father
« on: October 02, 2007, 02:30:36 AM »
For those like me who always assumed that Barrie's father played only a minor role in his son's life, read the Rev. William Souper's recollections of him in Cassell's Weekly. I only just found the article by chance, written some time in 1922: it's overtly sentimental in parts, but nevertheless something of an eye-opener. A search for "Barrie's father" in the database will bring it up.

Robert Greenham

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Re: Barrie's father
« Reply #1 on: October 02, 2007, 10:55:19 AM »
Hmm.  Sad to say, Andrew, my attempts to access this item on the database have failed, whereas other searches tried to date have succeeded.  (I'm using a Mac with latest Firefox and Safari web browsers).

ecb

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Re: Barrie's father
« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2007, 01:23:39 PM »
Try simply searching:  Barrie father - it comes up as the second hit

Iain Buik

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Re: Barrie's father
« Reply #3 on: October 02, 2007, 02:15:05 PM »
It has been prying on my mind for some time the influence of JM Barrie's father, and the influence as a whole of the loss of David his elder brother.
Reading the article it does seem that Margaret was lucid enough(being mindful of public respectabilities in the press), I think that JMB was an extremely good actor even at that tender age.Whether at the age of 6years he was able to comprehend the death of David, in Margaret Ogilvy he states that he only had vague recollections of him,His acting skills were honed on his mother,The clue to this is found in Sentimental Tommy, when Tommy takes on the Mourning clothes of a boy ,so allowing the boy to play as normal whilst Tommy mourns by proxy.Handing the clothes back, resuming his normal place, is pure Acting.Once JMB had left his mother, he usually went outside to play with his friends, which would confirm that the experience had little adverse affect on him.
     With his father and particularly Jane Ann in the household their level headedness would not permit JMB to wallow in the self inflicted pity that is implied by others( but never mentioned by JMB).JMB's father  and Jane Ann were the constant undercurrent of his greatness.
cheers
Iain.KCMG

Robert Greenham

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Re: Barrie's father
« Reply #4 on: October 02, 2007, 05:44:37 PM »
Many thanks, ecb.  I got there in the end.  I sometimes wonder whether I'll ever get the hang of computers! For the benefit of anyone else who may be experiencing similar problems, the precise procedure which works is this:

Do a search for 'Barrie', and, having got the results, do a search on that page for 'father', and then scroll down the results of that search to find the article.


Robert Greenham

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Re: Barrie's father
« Reply #5 on: October 03, 2007, 06:11:55 PM »
Surely it is evident that Barrie's father played a significant role in J.M.B.'s life.  Were it not for his beliefs, self-sacrifice and determination, his son might not have received the excellent schooling and university education that he did.

As J. A. Hammerton wrote of David Barrie, “It is astonishing to think how much David Barrie achieved in the way of self-culture during those years when his day must have been so fully occupied with the dire task of earning the daily bread.” “He began life at the loom, but had an appetite for learning, more common in his time than in ours, and, by dint of self-education, he had acquired considerable literary culture by the time that James was born.”  And further: His “respect for book-lore gave him a veneration for all men of intellectual gifts. Education had become a fetish with him.  No father was ever more resolved that his sons should have the best schooling, at no matter what sacrifice to himself.”

Margaret Ogilvy may have “entered into his (James's) boyish enthusiasms” and “encouraged him in his earliest literary adventures”, but I hope no-one is suggesting that David Barrie did not also exert some literary influence.  While it is true that Barrie did not write a companion volume to 'Margaret Ogilvy', those who knew his father seem to have believed his character might have inspired one. 

Remember, also, that Barrie acknowledged his father's input when writing his '”Educational Nurseries” - How a Child Drove me into the Wilderness': “Here am I, at the age of six years, so full of learning that yesterday I had a grey hair.”  “There is not, I suppose, anything I don't know, and if there is, father will be bringing it home on Saturday.” 

And Barrie wrote this tribute while his father was alive to read it: “One who proved a most loving as he was always a well-loved husband, a man I am proud to be able to call my father.”