A George Eliot Companion: Literary Achievement and Modern by F. B. Pinion

By F. B. Pinion

This severe survey of George Eliot's works features a biographical creation and a short account of the ancient occasions that performed a component in her fiction. a number of quotations from her letters make sure that the main beneficial elements of Eliot's inspiration are effectively conveyed. An appendix dwells on Eliot's impact on Thomas Hardy.

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Both worked hard to support not only themselves but Lewes's children and their mother, and there were harassing times when 'the scraping of another pen' in their only sitting-room drove Marian almost wild. She spent Christmas with Chrissey and her family (now living at Attleborough), and returned to read Meredith's The Shaving of Shagpat one day and write a review of it the next. Social ostracism had its rewards, for it enabled Marian to renew the reading of Greek, a practice to which she returned several times during the remainder of her life.

Except for the finale, it was George Eliot's Life 41 completed by the second week of September. Lewes, who was dubbed the 'von Moltke' of strategy by Blackwood's manager Simpson, had made arrangements for its publication in the United States, Europe, and Australia. Its reception at home was even more enthusiastic than that of Adam Bede; reviews were almost unanimous in praise; and soon George Eliot was sought after by the elite of London society. The finale of Middlemarch was written at Homburg, where the Leweses became acquainted with Lady Castledown, her two daughters, and a number of their friends.

Harriet Martineau was one of the first to call, promising a copy of her translation and abridgment of Comte. When Marian introduced her to Lewes she showed displeasure, prompted not so much by rivalry (his book on Comte having appeared a few weeks before hers) as by the recollection of his attack on her previous work. Bessie Parkes was a frequent visitor, sometimes with her friend Barbara Leigh Smith, an artist who lent Marian some of her water-colours to brighten her room. George Lewes, it is thought, came more and more often.

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