Roundabout Papers

Christie's Collections

Book 7
谷月社
1
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 On the 18th day of April last I went to see a friend in a neighboring Crescent, and on the steps of the next house beheld a group something like that here depicted. A newsboy had stopped in his walk, and was reading aloud the journal which it was his duty to deliver; a pretty orange-girl, with a heap of blazing fruit, rendered more brilliant by one of those great blue papers in which oranges are now artfully wrapped, leant over the railing and listened; and opposite the nympham discentem there was a capering and acute-eared young satirist of a crossing-sweeper, who had left his neighboring professional avocation and chance of profit, in order to listen to the tale of the little newsboy.

That intelligent reader, with his hand following the line as he read it out to his audience, was saying:—"And—now—Tom—coming up smiling—after his fall—dee—delivered a rattling clinker upon the Benicia Boy's—potato-trap—but was met by a—punisher on the nose—which," &c. &c.; or words to that effect. Betty at 52 let me in, while the boy was reading his lecture and, having been some twenty minutes or so in the house and paid my visit, I took leave.

The little lecturer was still at work on the 51 doorstep, and his audience had scarcely changed their position. Having read every word of the battle myself in the morning, I did not stay to listen further; but if the gentleman who expected his paper at the usual hour that day experienced delay and a little disappointment I shall not be surprised.

I am not going to expatiate on the battle. I have read in the correspondent's letter of a Northern newspaper, that in the midst of the company assembled the reader's humble servant was present, and in a very polite society, too, of "poets, clergymen, men of letters, and members of both Houses of Parliament." If so, I must have walked to the station in my sleep, paid three guineas in a profound fit of mental abstraction, and returned to bed unconscious, for I certainly woke there about the time when history relates that the fight was over. I do not know whose colors I wore—the Benician's, or those of the Irish champion; nor remember where the fight took place, which, indeed, no somnambulist is bound to recollect. Ought Mr. Sayers to be honored for being brave, or punished for being naughty? By the shade of Brutus the elder, I don't know....
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About the author

 Thackeray began as a satirist and parodist, writing works that displayed a sneaking fondness for roguish upstarts such as Becky Sharp in Vanity Fair, and the title characters of The Luck of Barry Lyndon and Catherine. In his earliest works, written under such pseudonyms as Charles James Yellowplush, Michael Angelo Titmarsh and George Savage Fitz-Boodle, he tended towards savagery in his attacks on high society, military prowess, the institution of marriage and hypocrisy.
One of his earliest works, "Timbuctoo" (1829), contains a burlesque upon the subject set for the Cambridge Chancellor's Medal for English Verse (the contest was won by Tennyson with "Timbuctoo"). Thackeray's writing career really began with a series of satirical sketches now usually known as The Yellowplush Papers, which appeared in Fraser's Magazine beginning in 1837. These were adapted for BBC Radio 4 in 2009, with Adam Buxton playing Charles Yellowplush.

Between May 1839 and February 1840 Fraser's published the work sometimes considered Thackeray's first novel, Catherine. Originally intended as a satire of the Newgate school of crime fiction, it ended up being more of a picaresque tale. He also began work, never finished, on the novel later published as A Shabby Genteel Story.

In The Luck of Barry Lyndon, a novel serialised in Fraser's in 1844, Thackeray explored the situation of an outsider trying to achieve status in high society, a theme he developed more successfully in Vanity Fair with the character of Becky Sharp, the artist's daughter who rises nearly to the heights by manipulating the other characters.

Thackeray is probably best known now for Vanity Fair. In contrast, his large novels from the period after Vanity Fair, which were once described by Henry James as examples of "loose baggy monsters", have largely faded from view, perhaps because they reflect a mellowing in Thackeray, who had become so successful with his satires on society that he seemed to lose his zest for attacking it. These later works include Pendennis, a Bildungsroman depicting the coming of age of Arthur Pendennis, an alter ego of Thackeray, who also features as the narrator of two later novels, The Newcomes and The Adventures of Philip. The Newcomes is noteworthy for its critical portrayal of the "marriage market," while Philip is known for its semi-autobiographical depiction of Thackeray's early life, in which he partially regains some of his early satirical power.

Also notable among the later novels is The History of Henry Esmond, in which Thackeray tried to write a novel in the style of the eighteenth century, a period that held great appeal for him. Not only Esmond but also Barry Lyndon and Catherine are set in that period, as is the sequel to Esmond, The Virginians, which takes place in North America and includes George Washington as a character who nearly kills one of the protagonists in a duel.

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Additional Information

Publisher
谷月社
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Published on
Oct 14, 2015
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Pages
224
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Language
English
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Genres
Fiction / Classics
Fiction / Fantasy / General
Fiction / Literary
Fiction / Short Stories (single author)
Literary Collections / European / General
Literary Collections / General
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This content is DRM protected.
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Barry Lyndon--far from the best known, but by some critics acclaimed as the finest, of Thackeray's works--appeared originally as a serial a few years before VANITY FAIR was written; yet it was not published in book form, and then not by itself, until after the publication of VANITY FAIR, PENDENNIS, ESMOND and THE NEWCOMES had placed its author in the forefront of the literary men of the day. So many years after the event we cannot help wondering why the story was not earlier put in book form; for in its delineation of the character of an adventurer it is as great as VANITY FAIR, while for the local colour of history, if I may put it so, it is no undistinguished precursor of ESMOND.

In the number of FRASER'S MAGAZINE for January 1844 appeared the first instalment of 'THE LUCK OF BARRY LYNDON, ESQ., A ROMANCE OF THE LAST CENTURY, by FitzBoodle,' and the story continued to appear month by month--with the exception of October--up to the end of the year, when the concluding portion was signed 'G. S. FitzBoodle.' FITZBOODLE'S CONFESSIONS, it should be added, had appeared occasionally in the magazine during the years immediately precedent, so that the pseudonym was familiar to FRASER'S readers. The story was written, according to its author's own words, 'with a great deal of dulness, unwillingness and labour,' and was evidently done as the instalments were required, for in August he wrote 'read for "B. L." all the morning at the club,' and four days later of '"B. L." lying like a nightmare on my mind.' The journey to the East--which was to give us in literary results NOTES OF A JOURNEY FROM CORNHILL TO GRAND CAIRO--was begun with BARRY LYNDON yet unfinished, for at Malta the author noted on the first three days of November--'Wrote Barry but slowly and with great difficulty.' 'Wrote Barry with no more success than yesterday.' 'Finished Barry after great throes late at night.' In the number of Fraser's for the following month, as I have said, the conclusion appeared. A dozen years later, in 1856, the story formed the first part of the third volume of Thackeray's MISCELLANIES, when it was called MEMOIRS OF BARRY LYNDON, ESQ., WRITTEN BY HIMSELF. Since then, it has nearly always been issued with other matter, as though it were not strong enough to stand alone, or as though the importance of a work was mainly to be gauged by the number of pages to be crowded into one cover. The scheme of the present edition fortunately allows fitting honour to be done to the memoirs of the great adventurer.

Sadly, Thackeray is seldom read nowadays. Except for 'Vanity Fair', he is mostly unknown and yet many of his contemporaries rated him as highly as Dickens. This comprehensive eBook aims to reveal the true genius of this master storyteller, featuring the complete works, with beautiful illustrations and special bonus texts. (Version 4)

* illustrated with hundreds of images, relating to Thackeray’s life and works
* annotated with concise introductions to the novels and other texts
* images of how the monthly serials first appeared, giving your eReader a taste of the original Victorian texts
* ALL 12 novels, many with their original illustrations
* even includes the rare unfinished novel ‘A Shabby Genteel Story’
* also includes the rare novels ‘Lovel the Widower’, ‘Adventures of Philip’ and the unfinished novel ‘Denis Duval’
* ALL of the short stories and novellas, with excellent formatting
* even INCLUDES Thackeray’s poetry, essays and Punch articles
* ALL of the travel writing and sketches, with many illustrations
* includes Trollope’s biography of Thackeray
* scholarly ordering of texts into chronological order and literary genres
* master table of contents to allow easy navigation around Thackeray’s immense oeuvre.
* includes Thackeray’s Collected Letters from 1847-1855

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CONTENTS

The Novels
CATHERINE
A SHABBY GENTEEL STORY
THE LUCK OF BARRY LYNDON
VANITY FAIR
THE HISTORY OF PENDENNIS
MEN’S WIVES
THE HISTORY OF HENRY ESMOND, ESQ.
THE NEWCOMES
THE VIRGINIANS
THE ADVENTURES OF PHILIP
LOVEL THE WIDOWER
DENIS DUVAL

The Shorter Fiction
ELIZABETH BROWNRIGGE
SULTAN STORK
LITTLE SPITZ
THE PROFESSOR
MISS LÖWE
THE YELLOWPLUSH PAPERS
THE TREMENDOUS ADVENTURES OF MAJOR GAHAGAN
THE FATAL BOOTS
COX’S DIARY
THE BEDFORD-ROW CONSPIRACY
THE HISTORY OF SAMUEL TITMARSH AND THE GREAT HOGGARTY DIAMOND
THE FITZ-BOODLE PAPERS
THE DIARY OF C. JEAMES DE LA PLUCHE, ESQ. WITH HIS LETTERS
A LEGEND OF THE RHINE
A LITTLE DINNER AT TIMMINS’S
REBECCA AND ROWENA
BLUEBEARD’S GHOST

The Christmas Books
MRS. PERKINS’S BALL
OUR STREET
DOCTOR BIRCH AND HIS YOUNG FRIENDS
THE KICKLEBURYS ON THE RHINE
THE ROSE AND THE RING

The Sketches and Satires
CONTRIBUTIONS TO “THE SNOB”
FLORE ET ZEPHYR
THE IRISH SKETCH BOOK
THE BOOK OF SNOBS
ROUNDABOUT PAPERS
SOME ROUNDABOUT PAPERS
DICKENS IN FRANCE
CHARACTER SKETCHES
SKETCHES AND TRAVELS IN LONDON
MR. BROWN’S LETTERS
THE PROSER
MISCELLANIES

The Play
THE WOLVES AND THE LAMB

The Poetry
LIST OF THE COMPLETE POETRY

The Travel Writing
NOTES OF A JOURNEY FROM CORNHILL TO GRAND CAIRO
THE PARIS SKETCH BOOK
LITTLE TRAVELS AND ROADSIDE SKETCHES

The Non-Fiction
NOVELS BY EMINENT HANDS
THE HISTORY OF THE NEXT FRENCH REVOLUTION
THE SECOND FUNERAL OF NAPOLEON
GEORGE CRUIKSHANK
JOHN LEECH’S PICTURES OF LIFE AND CHARACTER
THE ENGLISH HUMOURISTS OF THE EIGHTEENTH CENTURY
THE FOUR GEORGES
CRITICAL REVIEWS
A LECTURE ON “CHARITY AND HUMOUR”
VARIOUS ESSAYS, LETTERS, SKETCHES, ETC.
THE HISTORY OF DIONYSIUS DIDDLER.
CONTRIBUTIONS TO PUNCH
MISS TICKLETOBY’S LECTURES ON ENGLISH HISTORY
PAPERS BY THE FAT CONTRIBUTOR
MISCELLANEOUS CONTRIBUTIONS TO “PUNCH”
“SPEC” AND “PROSER” PAPERS
A PLAN FOR A PRIZE NOVEL

The Letters
A COLLECTION OF LETTERS 1847-1855

The Biography
THACKERAY BY ANTHONY TROLLOPE

In Memoriam W. M. Thackeray by Charles Dickens

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