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Elizabeth Gaskell - Author

About the Author

Elizabeth Gaskell was born in Chelsea, London, in 1810. Her father was a Unitarian minister and her mother died 13 months after her birth. Unable to raise her himself, her father sent the young Elizabeth to live with her aunt, Hannah Lumb, in Knutsford, Cheshire, in a town she later immortalized as Cranford.
 
In 1832, when staying in Manchester, Elizabeth met and married William Gaskell, the minister of the Cross Street Unitarian Chapel. Most of William Gaskell’s parishioners were textile workers and Elizabeth was deeply shocked by the poverty she witnessed in industrial Manchester. The circles in which they moved included social reformers and both the Gaskells were very involved in charity work in Manchester. Elizabeth started writing after the death of her baby son when her husband suggested it might help her recover from her grief. Her first novel, Mary Barton, dealt with social issues such as poverty and trade unionism. When it was published in 1848 it was greatly admired by other writers such as Thackeray and Charles Dickens, who serialized some of Gaskell’s other work in his journal, Household Words. Elizabeth published many other books, including North and South  and a biography of Charlotte Brontë. She died in 1865 in Hampshire, before completing Wives and Daughters, in a house she had bought as a surprise for her husband. She had intended that they would spend their retirement there.
 

Featured books by Elizabeth Gaskell

Mr Harrison's Confessions

Mr Harrison's Confessions

Author: Elizabeth Gaskell Format: Paperback Release Date: 29/08/2014

The charming and witty prequel to Cranford, Mr Harrison's Confessions is a neglected Gaskell classic with all the period detail, brilliantly drawn characters and a well-knitted plot associated with Gaskell's works. Enjoying the comforts of his well-kept home in middle age, country doctor William Harrison is prevailed upon by his longtime friend Charles, a bachelor, to dispense some advice on the 'wooing and winning' of women's affections. So begin the fascinating and varied recollections of one of Gaskell's best-loved characters. Lured to rural Duncombe by the promise of a partnership in a country practice, William finds himself trapped in claustrophobic provincial life where society is apparently presided over by the scheming of a set of under-occupied middle-aged women. Their supposed matchmaking prowess in fact leaves much to be desired; so much so, indeed, that before long the hapless young physician finds himself betrothed to three women - none of whom is the beautiful Sophy, the woman he truly desires. Chaotic, hilarious and poignant, Mr Harrison's Confessions is a comedy of manners - and of errors - that will resonate with Gaskell aficionados and newcomers alike.

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Other books by Elizabeth Gaskell

Cranford

Cranford

Author: Elizabeth Gaskell Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 27/04/2020

Wives and Daughters (with an Introduction by Adolphus W. Ward)

Wives and Daughters (with an Introduction by Adolphus W. Ward)

Author: Elizabeth Gaskell Format: eBook Release Date: 27/09/2018

Widely believed to be her masterpiece, Elizabeth Gaskell's "e;Wives and Daughters"e; was originally published serially in "e;Cornhill Magazine"e; between August 1864 and January 1866. The work, which was nearly finished at the time of Gaskell's death in 1865, was completed by Frederick Greenwood. The novel's heroine is Molly Gibson, the only daughter of a widowed country doctor in a small town in England. Molly, lonely and motherless, is befriended by the Hamley family, who are landed gentry and therefore above Molly's station, as the daughter of a professional. After returning home to her father, Molly finds that he has remarried. While her new stepmother is petty and greedy, in sharp contrast to Molly's warmth, kindness and innocence, Molly finds a friend and confidant in her new stepsister Cynthia. "e;Wives and Daughters"e;, a classic 19th century romantic novel that follows the daily lives and romantic entanglements of Molly, Cynthia, and their family and friends; is an insightful examination of the constraints imposed by society between individuals of professional versus aristocratic social classes. In turns both heartbreaking and comic, Gaskell's novel will linger with readers long past the final page. This edition includes an introduction by Adolphus W. Ward and a biographical afterword.

Elizabeth Gaskell: The Complete Supernatural Stories (tales of ghosts and mystery: The Grey Woman, Lois the Witch, Disappearances, The Crooked Branch...)

Elizabeth Gaskell: The Complete Supernatural Stories (tales of ghosts and mystery: The Grey Woman, Lois the Witch, Disappearances, The Crooked Branch...)

Author: Elizabeth Gaskell Format: eBook Release Date: 30/05/2018

Elizabeth Gaskell (1810-1865) was an English novelist, biographer, and short story writer. Her first novel, "e;Mary Barton"e;, was published anonymously in 1848. The best-known of her remaining novels are "e;Cranford"e; (1853), "e;North and South"e; (1854), and "e;Wives and Daughters"e; (1865). Gaskell became popular for her writing, especially her ghost stories, aided by Charles Dickens, who published her work in his magazine "e;Household Words"e;. Her supernatural stories are superior examples of the sentimental ghost tale so typical of the Victorian period. They combine a taste for the macabre with a deeply-felt sympathy for the extremes of female experience.

Cranford

Cranford

Author: Elizabeth Gaskell, Josie Billington Format: Hardback Release Date: 03/05/2018

Designed to appeal to the booklover, the Macmillan Collector's Library is a series of beautiful gift editions of much loved classic titles. Macmillan Collector's Library are books to love and treasure. A rich, comic and illuminating portrait of life in a small town, Cranford has moved and entertained readers for generations. This edition features illustrations by the celebrated Hugh Thomson, and an introduction by Dr Josie Billington, a specialist in Victorian literature. The women of the small country town of Cranford live in genteel poverty, resolutely refusing to embrace change, while the dark clouds of urbanisation and the advance of the railway hover threateningly on the horizon. In their simple, well-ordered lives they face emotional dilemmas and upheavals, small in the scale of the ever-shifting world, but affectionately portrayed by Elizabeth Gaskell with all the weight and consequence of a grand drama.

Mary Barton

Mary Barton

Author: Elizabeth Gaskell Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 15/04/2018

North and South

North and South

Author: Elizabeth Gaskell Format: eBook Release Date: 22/03/2018

Chios Classics brings literature's greatest works back to life for new generations. All our books contain a linked table of contents.North and South is the most famous novel written by Elizabeth Gaskell.Set in North England, North and South is a critique of English society during the industrial revolution.

Mr. Harrison's Confessions

Mr. Harrison's Confessions

Author: Elizabeth Gaskell Format: eBook Release Date: 22/03/2018

Chios Classics brings literature's greatest works back to life for new generations. All our books contain a linked table of contents.Mr. Harrison's Confessions is a novella written by Elizabeth Gaskell that tells the story of a doctor in provincial England.

Dark Night's Work

Dark Night's Work

Author: Elizabeth Gaskell Format: eBook Release Date: 22/03/2018

Elizabeth Gaskell was one of the most famous writers during the Victorian era. Gaskell's detailed descriptions of British society during her time has made her books of great interest to scholars of literature and history.Gaskell's most famous works include North and South, Cranford, and Wives and Daughters.A Dark Night's Work is a novella that centers around an alcoholic lawyer and his loving daughter who is blind to his many faults.This edition includes a table of contents.

Old Nurses Story

Old Nurses Story

Author: Elizabeth Gaskell Format: eBook Release Date: 22/03/2018

Christmas is the most famous holiday of the year, and the word itself evokes images of Santa Claus, reindeer, snow, Christmas trees, egg nog and more. At the same time, it represents Christianity's most important event, the birth of the baby Jesus. Instantly, well known Christmas carols ring in your ears, pictures of the Nativity Scene become ubiquitous, or maybe you even picture nutcrackers or Scrooge and Tiny Tim.

Christmas Storms and Sunshine

Christmas Storms and Sunshine

Author: Elizabeth Gaskell Format: eBook Release Date: 22/03/2018

Christmas is the most famous holiday of the year, and the word itself evokes images of Santa Claus, reindeer, snow, Christmas trees, egg nog and more. At the same time, it represents Christianity's most important event, the birth of the baby Jesus. Instantly, well known Christmas carols ring in your ears, pictures of the Nativity Scene become ubiquitous, or maybe you even picture nutcrackers or Scrooge and Tiny Tim.

Mary Barton

Mary Barton

Author: Elizabeth Gaskell Format: eBook Release Date: 22/03/2018

Mary Barton was Elizabeth Gaskell's first novel. This edition by Heraklion Press includes a linked table of contents.

Ruth

Ruth

Author: Elizabeth Gaskell Format: eBook Release Date: 22/03/2018

Elizabeth Gaskell's novel Ruth follows the story of an orphan girl named Ruth.Heraklion Press has included a linked table of contents for easy navigation.

Cranford

Cranford

Author: Elizabeth Gaskell Format: eBook Release Date: 22/03/2018

Chios Classics brings literature's greatest works back to life for new generations. All our books contain a linked table of contents.Cranford is a classic novel written by British author Elizabeth Gaskell.Cranford,which was published in Charles Dickens' magazine in 1851, is a collection of stories that portrayed small-town values in 19th century England.

Wives and Daughters

Wives and Daughters

Author: Elizabeth Gaskell Format: eBook Release Date: 22/03/2018

Chios Classics brings literature's greatest works back to life for new generations. All our books contain a linked table of contents.Wives and Daughters is a novel written by Elizabeth Gaskell.The story centers around the life of Molly Gibson, the daughter of a widowed doctor.

Sylvia's Lovers

Sylvia's Lovers

Author: Elizabeth Gaskell Format: eBook Release Date: 22/03/2018

Elizabeth Gaskell was one of the many great British writers during the Victorian era. Gaskell's novels are known for their detailed portrait of British society during her time and are still well read today. This edition of Sylvia's Lovers includes a table of contents.

Life of Charlotte Bronte

Life of Charlotte Bronte

Author: Elizabeth Gaskell Format: eBook Release Date: 22/03/2018

Elizabeth Gaskell was one of the many great British writers during the Victorian era. Gaskell's novels are known for their detailed portrait of British society during her time and are still well read today. This edition of The Life of Charlotte Bronte includes a table of contents.

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