'Half a Life-Time Ago', published in three parts in Household Words in October 1855, is a story of rather different kind. At its opening, the 'life-time' of its central character is over: the introductory paragraphs present it as an ...
Author: Elizabeth Gaskell
Publisher: Oxford University Press
'I see her now - cousin Phillis. The westering sun shone full upon her, and made a slanting stream of light into the room within.' Elizabeth Gaskell has long been one of the most popular of Victorian novelists, yet in her lifetime her shorter fictions were equally well loved, and they are among the most accomplished examples of the genre. The novella-length Cousin Phillis is a lyrical depiction of a vanishing way of life and a girl's disappointment in love: deceptively simple, its undercurrent of feeling leaves an indelible impression. The other five stories in this selection were all written during the 1850s for Dickens's periodical Household Words. They range from a quietly original tale of urban poverty and a fallen woman in 'Lizzie Leigh' to an historical tale of a great family in 'Morton Hall'; echoes of the French Revolution, the bleakness of winter in Westmorland, and a tragic secret are brought vividly to life. Heather Glen reflects on the stories' original periodical publication and on the nineteenth-century development of the short story in her Introduction to these immensely readable and sophisticated tales. ABOUT THE SERIES: For over 100 years Oxford World's Classics has made available the widest range of literature from around the globe. Each affordable volume reflects Oxford's commitment to scholarship, providing the most accurate text plus a wealth of other valuable features, including expert introductions by leading authorities, helpful notes to clarify the text, up-to-date bibliographies for further study, and much more.