If there are things that in the hunting field you have thought, but never articulated, you will probably read them here. Despite it’s rather forensic title this is a fatherly romp through the key archetypes of the hunting Field. As Lord Denham says in his introduction – this should be required reading for anyone connected with hunting. From the right sort of Master to the wrong sort, from the hunting nobleman to the whip and from the blacksmith to the braggart with horses to sell, we find the people are much the same as today.
It’s a book full of intensely quotable pieces of Surteesian pith “more people are flattered into virtue than were ever bullied out of vice” is one that the shouting MFH should mark well. But it is also full of a quiet, educative intimacy with the hunting, “a hat high in the air is worth a hundred halloos”, says the author. His affectionate pictures of the sorts of hunting characters he rightly loves are a sheer delight to read. Take the priceless Peter Pigskin, ‘clean shirt, clean shave and a guinea in his pocket’ – one part postilion, one part publican and one hundred percent foxhunter.