A Year of 15-Minute Daily Doses From the Harvard Classics
Pursuing a liberal education with disciplined attention to Cicero, Swift, Hume and others on the ‘five-foot shelf.’
By PAULA MARANTZ COHEN
Dec. 26, 2014 6:37 p.m. ET
For years, I’ve had a set of the Harvard Classics in my study: 50 volumes of “great works” bound in faded green cloth—the “Five-Foot Shelf,” as the collection was called when it was first published in 1910. Our set was left to us by my husband’s aunt. She acquired it secondhand during the Great Depression and willed it to us because we had a literary bent. It is unclear whether she ever looked at it. Despite our literary bent, we let it gather dust.