Read The Silver Trumpet by Owen Barfield Josephine Spence Marjorie Lamp Mead Online


In this delightful fantasy of kings and queens, a magical Silver Trumpet, a jester dwarf, and castle intrigues, English author Owen Barfield has created an enduring tale to captivate the imaginations of all readers. This beautifully illustrated edition of The Silver Trumpet, a story which first appeared in print in 1925, contains a helpful biographical note on Barfield byIn this delightful fantasy of kings and queens, a magical Silver Trumpet, a jester dwarf, and castle intrigues, English author Owen Barfield has created an enduring tale to captivate the imaginations of all readers. This beautifully illustrated edition of The Silver Trumpet, a story which first appeared in print in 1925, contains a helpful biographical note on Barfield by Marjorie Lamp Mead. An entertaining and handsome volume, it will be a valuable addition to the libraries of collectors, families, and schools....

Title : The Silver Trumpet
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780917665066
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 126 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The Silver Trumpet Reviews

  • Edward Waters
    2019-05-08 01:56

    As Owen Barfield's first published book and only work of fiction, THE SILVER TRUMPET is a bit difficult to evaluate. On the face of it we have a story spanning three generations of monarchs in a kingdom the name of which we are never told but whose seat is called Mountainy Castle. The opening chapter introduces us to newborn twin princesses, a nobleman called the 'Lord High Teller of the Other from Which', an elderly woman who may or may not be a witch and may or may not be benign, a newly arrived prince from a neighboring kingdom which IS named, and the titular Silver Trumpet with remarkable power that becomes evident over time but which is never accounted for. After this things get complicated.The best advice to readers would probably be not to judge the story too quickly. I did, and nearly abandoned it soon after that first chapter, which had struck me as too affected and silly even for children's literature. The author's reputation, however, and my longstanding interest in Inklings studies convinced me to keep at it. Even so, I set the book aside for more than a month. Upon resuming, however, I found that the writing seemed less disagreeable and the story more engaging. Then, just over a third of the way through, I was startled by the tragic death of two major characters (one with horrible slander on his memory) and later still by a prolonged psychological trauma inflicted on a very young child! If my first impression had been one of condescending fluff, I now questioned whether such dark intensity was appropriate for the age-group the book presumably targeted.All I can say is that it ends well. True to its faerie-tale model, the resolution is sudden and fanciful, yet I found it satisfying and a worthy example of what Tolkien termed 'Eucatastrophe' -- 'a sudden and miraculous grace: never to be counted on to recur. It does not deny the existence ... of sorrow and failure: the possibility of these is necessary to the joy of deliverance; it denies ... universal final defeat.' Not all the losses, injustices, and hurts in THE SILVER TRUMPET are erased in the end; yet they do find resolution and healing. As I closed the book at last, I was glad I had stayed with it. I was also now a little sorry that Barfield did not made further excursions into this genre.

  • Jeremy
    2019-04-30 02:34

    From C. S. Lewis's letter to Owen Barfield on June 28, 1936 (in Vol. 2 of Collected Letters): "I lent The Silver Trumpet [originally published in 1925] to Tolkien and hear that it is the greatest success among his children that they have ever known. His own fairy-tales, which are excellent, have now no market: and its first reading—children are so practical!—led to a universal wail 'You're not going to give it back to Mr. Lewis, are you?' All the things which the wiseacres on child psychology in our circle said when you wrote it turn out to be nonsense. 'They liked the sad parts', said Tolkien, 'because they were sad and the puzzling parts because they were puzzling, as children always do.' The youngest boy liked Gamboy because 'she was clever and the bad people in books usually aren't.' The tags of the Podger have become so popular as to be almost a nuisance in the house. In fine, you have scored a direct hit."5: princess twins with a strong connection8-9: blessing/curse that makes them even closer10: major difference between Violetta (Violet) and Gambetta (Gamboy)12: explanation of their blessing/curse12-13: different responses to hearing the silver trumpet21: Little Fat Podger and Prince Courtesy22: Grotesque/Gothic; looking for adventures?31/33: the power of music (including the silver trumpet) to change attitudes36: the breaking of Miss Thomson's spell?38: two ways of loving people (to advance their well-being, or to get them to do what you want them to do)90: a very Inkling-esque reference to longing100: foreshadowing to the return of a previous character105: reference to another character whom I did not expect to return124: hint of a major upcoming event that was foreshadowed with Miss Thomson (pp. 8-9)142: fulfillment of the foreshadowing on p. 124

  • Keeley
    2019-05-05 01:54

    This is my most absolutely favorite book of all time. I've been reading and re-reading this book since I was about 6, and learn something new every time. More than a fairy tale or love story, it's just a beautifully written story about the importance of being a good and sincere person.

  • Phillip
    2019-04-23 01:38

    Has a slow start but gets better as the story unwinds. I liked it by the time I finished it and look forward to seeing if it grows in my imagination the way the short works of Tolkien have done.

  • Bill
    2019-05-11 20:53

    I was excited to finally get my hands on a copy of this. While I really enjoyed it I found myself wishing that Barfield had tried his hand at the genre of fairy tale again, somewhat later in his career. With that said, this is a lovely book which genuinely adds to the genre without violating it at all. I would definitely recommend it for all lovers of fairy tale.

  • Dave Maddock
    2019-05-04 23:01

    The Owen Barfield estate has published the text of this story as a PDF on their website along with some photos of illustrations done for the various print editions. I read the PDF version. (If you want a print copy, the Eerdmans second edition illustrations look the prettiest by far.)Having read a crapload of Inklings work including the lesser-known Charles Williams and Barfield himself--including History in English Words and Poetic Diction, I wanted to get this early Barfield work under my belt as well. I was curious to see what insight into the works of Tolkien and C.S. Lewis it might provide, given that The Silver Trumpet was the first children's fantasy written by an Inkling. In short: not much. (If you are looking for that kind of thing, Poetic Diction and The Place Of The Lion are required reading.)While Barfield's ideas about the value of myth, imagination, and language were just as sophisticated as his friends, this work reads like juvenilia compared to theirs. This is not so surprising given that it was written very early in Barfield's life and career while the other two were more mature when they wrote Narnia and The Hobbit. The target audience for the latter two also seems older. Perhaps Barfield's later novel This Ever Diverse Pair would be a fairer and more fruitful comparison.Something critically useful might be said about the silver trumpet as a metaphor for the kind of poiesis he describes in Poetic Diction, but in my opinion the execution is not striking enough to rise above the million examples you could find by pulling any children's book off the shelf at random.Ultimately, this is a run of the mill fairy tale for kids around age six. There's nothing bad about that and I admit it is unfair to expect the book to be grander than it was ever intended to be. Then again, if it doesn't offer a meaty subtext to Inklings fans then there is little reason to read it at all since such stories for kids are a dime a dozen.

  • Ben McFarland
    2019-05-04 20:59

    This was a fine read-aloud with the kids, but like Owen Barfield's later philosophy, it's entirely quirkly. Oddly paced and with some anachronistic characterizations that remind you that it's almost a century old now, it nonetheless has a bit of charm, novel characters that are both stock and not at the same time, and enough timeless fairy-tale detail to draw you in. It's fun to note the frequent references to dancing if you know that Barfield was part of a dance troupe, of all things. The story hints at depth but I don't think there's that much there. There's also a few shocking deaths partway through the story, which might disturb some children, but I thought it added a bit of heft to the feeling, and some of it is made right in the end. I'm not sure what to think of this, but it surprised me and kept me interested in a unique way -- much like Barfield's philosophy. Hard to find but worth waiting for from library loan.

  • Adam
    2019-05-21 01:35

    This early work, first published by the author at age 27, will be of interest mainly to Barfield enthusiasts. The story bears the marks, favorably, of a writer acquainted with the psychological interpretation of fairy tales. In general, the writing is very solid, and yet, lengthy as it is, there simply isn’t enough fantastical "color" to the characters and events to give the story much distinction. Hence, The Silver Trumpet is readable fare--a childrens lit. artifact of simpler times--but a book worth recommending mainly to those with the patience and dedication to mine the story for subtext. (Still, I'll admit that I've read it twice!)

  • Stephen
    2019-04-23 02:42

    One of my kids favorite stories... somewhere in between a picture book and a chapter book in length. Rootity tootity toot.I probably read this out loud 15 times..........

  • Steve Vetsch
    2019-05-02 22:50

    a great story in the tradition of the master fairy tales

  • Sophie
    2019-05-07 01:55

    Fantastic fairytale. Good versus evil, a little magic, and some great illustrations!