Shandean Exactness

Sir Walter Scott says, “The author proceeds with the most unfeeling prolixity to give a minute detail of civil and common law, of the feudal institutions, of the architecture of churches and castles, of sculpture and painting, of minstrels, players, and parish clerks ... Tristram can hardly be said to be fairly born, though his life has already attained the size of half a volume.” (See below.)

“With a Shaudean exactness ... Lady Anne begins her memoirs of herself nine months before her nativity, for the sake of introducing a beautiful quotation from the Psalms.” —Biog. Borealis, p. 269.

Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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