The Compleat Angler (unabridged)

Audio Sample

Izaak Walton & Charles Cotton

The Compleat Angler

Read by Sean Barrett, Carly Bawden, Steven Blakeley, Jonathan Keeble, Leighton Pugh, Georgina Sutton & David Timson with Derek Jacobi


‘As no man is born an artist, so no man is born an angler.’ Izaak Walton’s The Compleat Angler, long considered the bible of fishing, is a joyful celebration of the English countryside and the relaxed and reflective lifestyle of the devoted fisherman. Through dialogue between teacher and student, the book sheds a unique light on fishing, baiting and cooking, including an original recipe for trout. Its music, rhymes, poetry, and humour are all brought to life by a full cast. As winding as a quiet brook and as bountiful as a bursting riverbank, The Compleat Angler is essential listening for any outdoors enthusiast.

  • Running Time: 9 h 15 m

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    Digital ISBN:978-1-78198-033-0
    Cat. no.:NA0259
    Download size:211 MB
    Directed by:John Foley
    Edited by:Malcolm Blackmoor
    Released:June 2017
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Escape an uncertain world by listening to David Timson and a talented cast brilliantly recreate the fishing classic The Compleat Angler, published in 1653. Never mind if you don’t fish: it’s a vivid window into 17th-century life, stuffed with natural history (kingfishers’ nests of woven fishbones, frogs blinding pikes with their front toes) and recipes for such delicacies as minnow tansies (‘fried with yolk of eggs, the flowers of cowslips and of primroses, and a little tansy’). There are also fishy poems by George Herbert and John Donne, as well as folk songs sung to the lute with a flourish. Izaak Walton wrote the book as a performance. It takes the form of a walk from Tottenham (in what is now north London) up the Lea Valley. He makes friends on the way and stops off to listen to milkmaids caroling and refreshing themselves with much cheer at the Thatched House at Hoddesdon. This has to be one of the best audiobooks so far.

Christina Hardyment, The Times

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