"Autumn-weather in Europe is often such a very sorry affair"

Maggiemoocn

Senior Member
Chinese
Hi everyone,

I'm reading Henry James Italian Hours on Page 32, and I can't figure out the following passage and need help from you:

Day after day the air was filled with golden light, and even those chalkish vistas of the Parisian beaux guartiers assumed the iridescent tints of autumn. Autumn-weather in Europe is often such a very sorry affair that a fair-minded American will have it on his conscience to call attention to a rainless and radiant October.

The first sentence is not difficult, I just can't understand the second one. Why is Autumn-weather in Europe is often "such a very sorry affair"? What does the whole sentence mean?

I would appreciate it if you can help.

Maggie
 
  • kentix

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    Autumn-weather weather in Europe is often such a very sorry affair so very unpleasant that a fair-minded American will have it on his conscience feel compelled to call attention to a rainless and radiant October.

    I'm not sure why "autumn-weather" has a hyphen. It seems very odd to me (in AE, at least).

    I think "fair-minded" might imply that the American referred to made plenty of complaints about the weather when it was not good. So now he feels compelled to make up for it when the weather has turned pleasant.
     

    Maggiemoocn

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    Autumn-weather weather in Europe is often such a very sorry affair so very unpleasant that a fair-minded American will have it on his conscience feel compelled to call attention to a rainless and radiant October.

    I'm not sure why "autumn-weather" has a hyphen. It seems very odd to me (in AE, at least).

    I think "fair-minded" might imply that the American referred to made plenty of complaints about the weather when it was not good. So now he feels compelled to make up for it when the weather has turned pleasant.
    I was wondering how to understand "a fair-minded American will have it on his conscience to call attention to a rainless and radiant October", your response made all clear to me and helped a lot. Thanks. I checked it again, there is a hyphen between Autumn and weather, I don't know why either. Anyway, now I understand the whole sentence, thank you.
     
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