Deerbrook (Penguin Classics)
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When the Ibbotson sisters, Hester and Margaret, arrive at the village of Deerbrook to stay with their cousin Mr Grey and his wife, speculation is rife that one of them might marry the local apothecary Edward Hope. Although he is immediately attracted to Margaret, Hope is ultimately persuaded to marry the beautiful Hester. The unhappiness of their marriage is compounded when a malicious village gossip accuses Hope of grave-robbing.
Hugh Worthington, who becomes suddenly insane in December. 1827 Worthington dies in May. Publication of Harriet's early tales The Rioters and Principle and Practice. 1829 The Martineau family business finally collapses in June: daughters under pressure to find work. W. J. Fox pays Harriet �15 a year for her reviews for the Unitarian Monthly Repository. 1830–31 Harriet wins all three prizes in an essay competition run by the British and Foreign Unitarian Association to present Unitarianism to
pen, she found that she was as far as ever from deciding whether Hester was not now in the way to be less happy than ever, and how it was that, with all her close friendship with Philip Enderby, of which she had spoken so confidently to Maria, she was now in perfect ignorance of his movements and intentions. The whole was very strange, and, in the experience, somewhat dreary. Her great comfort was Edward: this was a new support and a strong one: but even here she was compelled to own herself
they are not fine ladies. I am rather surprised at their bringing a maid. She looks a very respectable person; but I did not suppose they would keep a maid, till they knew better what to look forward to. I do not know what Mr Grey will think of it.’ When Hester and Margaret came down, Mrs Grey was ready with an account of the society of the place. ‘We are as well off for society,’ said she, ‘as most places of the size. If you were to ask the bookseller at Blickley,3 who supplies our club,4 he
opportunity of opening the subject advantageously with Mr Rowland. The wine and walnuts were on the table, and the gentleman and lady were amusing themselves with letting Anna and Ned try to crack walnuts, (the three elder children being by this time at school at Blickley,) when Mrs Rowland began her attack. ‘My dear,’ said she, ‘is the corner-house in perfectly good repair at present?’ ‘I believe so. It was thoroughly set to rights when Mr Hope went into it, and again after the riot; and I
every night?’ ‘Yes; and we hear, wherever we go, of fiery swords, and dreadful angels,2 seen in the clouds; and the old prophecies have all come up again, – at least, all of them that are dismal. As for the death-watches,3 they are out of number; and there is never a fire lighted but a coffin flies out.’4 ‘And this story of a ghost of a coffin, with four ghosts to bear it, that goes up and down in the village all night long,’ said Hester, – ‘I really do not wonder that it shakes the nerves of