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Robert Louis Stevenson’s Baby Book (1922)

- November 13, 2012 in baby book, childhood, children, collections, dreams, robert louis stevenson, texts, Texts: 19th, Texts: 20th, Texts: Miscellaneous, Texts: Non-fiction

Stevenson’s baby book, being the record of the sayings and doings of Robert Louis Balfour Stevenson, son of Thomas Stevenson, C.E. and Margaret Isabella Balfour or Stevenson; 1922; John Howell / J.H. Nash, San Francisco . A remarkable record of the first few years of author Robert Louis Stevenson’s life, as noted down by his mother in a “Baby Book”. The book featured above, published in 1922, consists of a facsimile of the original handwritten baby book followed by a transcription. Amid various baby-related milestones, such as first teeth, crawl, walk, etc., we hear reports of a young “Lou” (also called “Boulihasker, Smoutie, Baron Broadnose, Signor Sprucki,.. Maister Sprook”) first engaging with and questioning the world around him… here’s a few little golden snippets: When 1 year old… Jan 13th: Smout gives up his forenoon sleep and calls books “oufs” because he expects to find pictures of dogs in them. 3 years old… April 17th: When Smout was drawing pictures he said “I have drawed a man’s body, shall I do his soul now?” 4 years old… January 10th : When Lou saw the sun looking red he said “It’s just like a great big orange thrown up into the [...]