Alan Bell

Remembered Chiefly For His ‘Wife’s’ Novels

G H Lewes: A Life

By Rosemary Ashton

Clarendon Press 369pp £25 order from our bookshop

Except for his long, devoted, but unmarried liaison with Marian Evans, ‘George Eliot’, George Henry Lewes is little known nowadays. Rosemary Ashton’s thorough and well-written new biography recalls him as a considerable figure in the world of Victorian letters, adding a good deal to what we know of him from biographies and editions of George Eliot. This is a considerable achievement when there are great chunks of his early life for which very little is known of his activities. Autobiographical clues – used with due caution – have had to be picked up from his fiction, and the world of the self-taught, ill-paid aspiring journalist and essayist is skilfully recaptured.

Subscribe to read the full article

hamilton_sept2016_online

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • 'Costume of the life force? Words fail.' Germaine Greer on an ode to the condom ,
    • It's Write on Kew for the next four days. There are free copies of Literary Review about; why not dip your toe into the magazine?,
    • Which sci-fi author time-travelled to ancient Rome and lived a parallel life a persecuted Christian named Thomas? ,
    • You can pick up free copies of Literary Review at Write On Kew, which begins tomorrow. Fill your boots (with magazines).,
    • Michael Burleigh reads a survey of the rise of Asia ,
    • The Book of Kells, the Codex Amiatinus and the Carmina Burana: manuscript celebrities ,
    • 'Her bias is firmly towards all that is subterranean, hidden, buried, cavernous': Gillian Tindall explores Crossrail ,