The Tale of Joshua Easement by Terry Pratchett

Sir Joshua Easement, of Easement Manor, Shrewsbury, was, in his own estimation at least, one of the last of the old Elizabethan seadogs – an ambition that was somewhat thwarted by a total lack of a grasp of the principles of navigation. Documents in the National Maritime Museum reveal that Sir Joshua’s navigational method mainly consisted of variations on the theme of bumping into things, and this was exacerbated by his absolute blindness to the difference between port and starboard.

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Eight internationally acclaimed authors have invented imaginary biographies and character sketches based on fourteen unidentified portraits. Who are these men and women, why were they painted, and why do they now find themselves in the Collection of the National Portrait Gallery? With fictional letters, diaries, mini-biographies and memoirs, Imagined Lives creates vivid stories about these unknown sitters from the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.