Sylvia's Lovers

ISBN-10: 0140434224
ISBN-13: 9780140434224
Edition: 1996
List price: $15.00 Buy it from $3.94
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Description: Elizabeth Gaskell's only historical novel, Sylvia's Lovers , is set in 1790 in the seaside town of Monkshaven (Whitby) where press-gangs wreak havoc by seizing young men for service in the Napoleonic wars. One of their victims is whaling harpooner,  More...

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Book details

List price: $15.00
Copyright year: 1996
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 6/1/1997
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 528
Size: 5.00" wide x 8.00" long x 1.00" tall
Weight: 0.638
Language: English

Elizabeth Gaskell's only historical novel, Sylvia's Lovers , is set in 1790 in the seaside town of Monkshaven (Whitby) where press-gangs wreak havoc by seizing young men for service in the Napoleonic wars. One of their victims is whaling harpooner, Charley Kinraid, whose charm and vivacity have captured the heart of Sylvia Robson. But Sylvia's devoted cousin, Philip Hepburn, hopes to marry her himself and, in order to win her, deliberately withholds crucial information - with devastating consequences. With its themes of suffering, unrequited love, and the clash between desire and duty, Sylvia's Lovers is one of the most powerfully moving of all Gaskell's novels, reputedly described by its author as 'the saddest story I ever wrote'.

Elizabeth Gaskell was the daughter of a Unitarian clergyman, who was also a civil servant and journalist. Her mother died when she was young, and she was brought up by her aunt in Knutsford, a small village that was the prototype for Cranford, Hollingford and the setting for numerous other short stories. In 1832, she married William Gaskell, a Unitarian clergyman in Manchester. She participated in his ministry and collaborated with him to write the poem "Sketches Among the Poor" in 1837. "Our Society at Cranford" was the first two chapters of "Cranford" and it appeared in Dickens' Household Words in 1851. Dickens liked it so much that he pressed Gaskell for more episodes, and she produced eight more of them between 1852 and 1853. She also wrote, mainly for Dickens, "My Lady Ludlow" and "Lois the Witch," a novella that concerns the Salem witch trials. "Wives and Daughters: An Every-day Story" ran in Cornhill from August 1864 to January 1866. The final installment was never written but the ending was known and the novel exists now virtually complete. The story centers on a series of relationships between family groups in Hollingford. Most critics agree that her greatest achievement is the short novel "Cousin Phillis." Gaskell was also followed by controversy. In 1853, she offended many readers with "Ruth," which explored seduction and illegitimacy that led the "fallen woman" into ostracism and inevitable prostitution. The novel presents the social conduct in a small community when tolerance and morality clash. Critics praised the novel's moral lessons but Gaskell's own congregation burned the book and it was banned in many libraries. In 1857, "The Life of Charlotte Bronte" was published. The biography was initially praised but angry protests came from some of the people it dealt with. Gaskell wrote of Bronte's version on his dismissal from his tutoring position. He blamed it on his refusal to be seduced by his employer's wife. She was threatened with legal action but, with the help of her husband, the problems were resolved. Gaskell was against any biographical notice of her being written during her lifetime. After her death in 1865, her family refused to make family letters or biographical data available.

Oxford World's Classics
Introduction
Note On The Text
Select Bibliography
Chronology Of Elizabeth Gaskell
Monkshaven
Home from Greenland
Buying a New Cloak
Philip Hepburn
Story of the Press-Gang
the Sailor's Funeral
T�te-�-T�te. - the Will
Attraction and Repulsion
the Specksioneer
a Refractory Pupil
Visions of the Future
Visions of the Future
Perplexities
Partnership
a Difficult Question
the Engagement
the Engagement
the Engagement
an Important Mission
Loved and Lost*
a Rejected Suitor
Deepening Shadows
Retaliation
Retaliation
Coming Troubles
a Dreary Vigil
a Dreary Vigil
a Dreary Vigil
a Dreary Vigil
Happy Days
Evil Omens
Rescued from the Waves
an Apparition
an Apparition
an Apparition
Mysterious Tidings
Bereavement
Bereavement
Bereavement
Bereavement
Bereavement
a Fable at Fault
the Unknown
the Unknown
the Unknown
'The Keel Row' And Rhymes Of Northern Bards
A Revised Chronology For Sylvia's Lovers
The Texts Of The First And Illustrated Editions Of Sylvia's Lovers
Explanatory Notes

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