The Vagrant, What to Do With Him. A Problem of To-Day.

  • Fergusson, R. Menzies
  • London: James Nisbet & Co., Limited 1911


SKU: 6059 Category: Tag:


8vo, pp. 62. Original buff wrappers printed in black. Just a touch of spotting. Front joint sometime reinforced with paper tape, front joint splitting at half-title.


A small, scarce book by jobbing Scottish writer Robert Menzies Fergusson, whose other written output includes a cyclist travelogue through Holland and Belgium, a volume of Ochil fairy tales and a book of poetry. This book seems to have been produced owing to an excess of (ill-)feeling on Fergusson's part - he views vagrants as 'regular loafers, lookers for work without the desire to find it, migratory tramps who accost every traveller they meet and glibly tell a made-up story of dire misfortune, with which the prey upon the kindly feelings of the unthinking, who hand them a few coppers in order to get rid of their melancholy pleadings' (p.12). His uncompassionate solution is large-scale labour colonies, which in the short final chapter he also advocates as a desirable thing for Scotland's epileptics, calling such a colony an 'urgent necessity.' Library Hub records 7 copies.

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