Mainly about Fishing (abbreviated MAF on Arthur Ransome Wiki) was Arthur Ransome’s last book, published in 1959. The blurb on the dust cover talks about the main theme of Dr. Ransome’s book, the relationship between fisherman and the salmon which leave our shores and then return to the river where they were hatched. And the tying of flies to tempt the returning monsters and their sea trout cousins. The chomping jaws of American soldiers chewing gum suggests to him how to tie his Blue Vulturine Elver.
There are chapters on Isaak Walton and on his friend Francis Hirst, on fishing books and diaries, and on lesser known writers on fishing like the Cromwellian trooper Richard Franck and John Younger the shoemaker of St Boswells. He notes that two paintings by the eighteenth century painter Zoffany include a salmon-fly and George Garrick (David’s brother) fishing in the Thames.
The book has twenty chapters and eight illustrations (six in colour). It is dedicated to Roland Pedder of Finsthwaite.
- Mainly about Fishing (Adam & Charles Black, London, 1959)