Mugby Junction/Hugby-in-the-Hole

Isaia

New Member
Italian
Another query on Chesterton's The Outline of Sanity:

Here it is:

While Mugby Junction neglected its refreshment-rooms, Hugby-in-the-Hole has revived its inns.

Mugby Junction is a story by Charles Dickens, but what about Hugby-in-the-Hole? I think there's one character named Hugby in The Flying Inn...

In this chapter GK is talking about the rising popularity of cars and the fact that "The railway is fading before our eyes".

GKC's work is no longer protected by copyright, so I hope I will be allowed to post more than a few lines for context. Here they are:

The free and solitary traveller is returning before our very eyes; not always (it is true) equipped with scrip or scallop, but having recovered to some extent the freedom of the King's highway in the manner of Merry England. Nor is this the only ancient thing such travel has revived. While Mugby Junction neglected its refreshment-rooms, Hugby-in-the-Hole has revived its inns.
To that limited extent the Ford motor is already a reversion to the free man.


Any suggestions?
 
  • grubble

    Senior Member
    British English
    Both Mugby and Hugby are fictional places. Chesterton has picked them because they rhyme.

    We know that "junction" in BrE always refers to a railway junction. "In the hole" means something like "in the very small valley"; an unlikely place for a railway station which requires reasonably flat terrain.

    So a British person understands that Chesterton is contrasting a town that has a railway station with a non-railway town that is only accessible to tourists by motor vehicle. The former is losing customers for its catering whilst the latter is experiencing an increase in trade.
     
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