HomeGroupsTalkExploreZeitgeist
Search Site
This site uses cookies to deliver our services, improve performance, for analytics, and (if not signed in) for advertising. By using LibraryThing you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your use of the site and services is subject to these policies and terms.
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Loading...

Wives and Daughters (1865)

by Elizabeth Gaskell

Other authors: Frederick Greenwood (Author), Graham Handley (Editor)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
3,741782,740 (4.14)351
Wives and Daughters, Elizabeth Gaskell's last novel, is regarded by many as her masterpiece. Molly Gibson is the daughter of the doctor in the small provincial town of Hollingford. Her widowed father marries a second time to give Molly the woman's presence he feels she lacks, but until thearrival of Cynthia, her dazzling step-sister, Molly finds her situation hard to accept. Intertwined with the story of the Gibsons is that of Squire Hamley and his two sons; as Molly grows up and falls in love she learns to judge people for what they are, not what they seem. Through Molly'sobservations the hierarchies, social values, and social changes of early nineteenth-century English life are made vivid in a novel that is timeless in its representation of human relationships.This edition, the first to be based in the original Cornhill Magazine serialization of 1864-6, draws on a full collation of the manuscript to present the most accurate text so far available.… (more)
  1. 80
    Persuasion by Jane Austen (Shuffy2)
    Shuffy2: In addition to North and South by Gaskell, Wives and Daughters is another great read for people who love Austen's Persusion and Sense and Sensibility!
  2. 80
    Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (Cecilturtle)
  3. 50
    Doctor Thorne by Anthony Trollope (atimco)
    atimco: Trollope's Mary Thorne and Gaskell's Molly Gibson have much in common: both their father-figures are country doctors with connections to the local nobility, both fall in love with a man above them in station and wealth, both face undeserved public shame in their social circles, and both are sensible, intelligent heroines.… (more)
  4. 20
    Daniel Deronda by George Eliot (Siliverien)
  5. 10
    The Victorian House: Domestic Life from Childbirth to Deathbed by Judith Flanders (susanbooks)
  6. 10
    Middlemarch by George Eliot (christiguc, HollyMS)
Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 351 mentions

English (74)  Spanish (1)  Swedish (1)  All languages (76)
Showing 1-5 of 74 (next | show all)
Set in the 1830’s, at a time when society was in flux, but the separations between the gentry and the commoner still tightly drawn, Wives and Daughters is a captivating glimpse into the lives of two girls, thrown into a blended family. Our main heroine, Molly Gibson, is a simple and honest girl, brought up by her father, a physician, and raised without the influence of a mother. Upon her father’s remarriage, she is introduced not only to the restrictiveness of a shallow and grating step-mother but is also given a new sister exactly her age, Cynthia Kirkpatrick.

Molly is a lovely creation, that one cannot help admiring and liking very much, but Cynthia is one of the most interesting characters I have encountered for quite some time. She is so flawed, so in need of love and guidance (which she has certainly never received from her mother), so inconstant in her dealings with others and so terribly human. Yet, she is loveable and sweet and kind in so many ways, and her genuine love for Molly redeems her of being seen as unfeeling or conniving. Cynthia’s vacillation contrasts so starkly with Molly’s steady sureness. If ever you had a friend, you would wish it to someone of Molly’s ilk.

In parallel to this, Mrs. Gaskell weaves the stories of two brothers, Osbourne and Roger, of an ancient lineage and whose father has not quite made his way into the modern time in which he lives. The quality of character of these men is explored, as well, and they form an important part of the courting machinations that transpire. One cannot help thinking of Jane Austen when watching this ritual unfold that revolves far more in the mind of Mrs. Gibson than in any of the young people.

From the beginning of this novel, Elizabeth Gaskell had my full attention. The story moves rapidly despite its length and the various threads are all tied neatly together, so that even the minor characters fit into the puzzle in very pleasing ways. Unfortunately, Mrs. Gaskell died with the final chapter or two unwritten. So, while all the major plot lines are satisfied and you do not feel left hanging, there is still a sense of something unfinished at the end. I was not prepared for this and it felt quite more jarring than it might have had I realized it was an unfinished work. Even with this, I would not hesitate to recommend reading this novel. I think Elizabeth Gaskell deserves to be regarded perhaps a bit more highly than she has been and holds her own with her contemporaries, the Brontes.
( )
  mattorsara | Aug 11, 2022 |
Wives and Daughters chronicles the maturation of Molly Gibson, a sincere young woman whose widowed father, the town doctor, marries Hyacinth Kirkpatrick, a charming but petty widow and former governess in the household of Lord Cumnor. Although Molly resents her stepmother, she befriends her stepsister Cynthia, who is secretly engaged to Lord Cumnor’s land agent, Mr. Preston. Molly is warmly received at the home of Squire Hamley and his disabled wife. The Hamleys’ two sons are Osborne, a clever but shallow man who marries unwisely and dies young, and Roger, an honest scientist who eventually marries Molly after being engaged to Cynthia, who ultimately weds a London barrister. ( )
  Marcos_Augusto | Jan 19, 2022 |
I loved this novel, it was long and at times tedious, but the different story lines meld together at the end...almost, because Mrs. Gaskell died before the final chapters were written. Huge surprise for me...I had no idea there was no definitive ending. The reader can probably guess how it all wraps up....so it was not too disappointing. I enjoy the authentic look into English society of the 1830's. Will be reading more from Mrs. Gaskell. ( )
  almin | Nov 9, 2021 |
Set in the town of Hollingford in the South of England in the 1820's and 30's this is the story of several county families centering on Molly Gibson, a 17-year-old girl. Molly is close to her father, the local doctor and is distraught when her father remarries. It's only been Molly and her father for years. Molly now gains a step-mother, Hyacinth and a step-sister, Cynthia, a great beauty. As she adjusts to these changes, some challenging and others positive, she mingles with some other families in the district.
https://readableword.wordpress.com/2021/05/30/wives-and-daughters-by-elizabeth-g... ( )
  Nicky24 | Oct 27, 2021 |
Middle class and rural life 1820s mined in detail for class, values, occupations to fill the time. Molly is earnest heroine who suffers step mother and sister's foibles.
  MarilynKinnon | Aug 15, 2021 |
Showing 1-5 of 74 (next | show all)

» Add other authors (10 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Elizabeth Gaskellprimary authorall editionscalculated
Greenwood, FrederickAuthorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Handley, GrahamEditorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Alou, DamiánTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Arping, ÅsaAfterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Arping, ÅsaPrefacesecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Bailey, JosephineNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kwiatkowska, KatarzynaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lane, MargaretIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Maurier, George DuIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
May, NadiaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Morris, PamEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ott, AndreaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Reinhard-Stocker, AliceAfterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Scales, PrunellaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sundström, Gun-BrittTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Vierne, BéatriceTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ward, A. W.Introductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
First words
To begin with the old rigmarole of childhood.
Quotations
The answer was silly enough, logically; but forcible in fact. Cynthia was Cynthia, and not Venus herself could have been her substitute. In this one thing Mr. Preston was more really true than many worthy men, who, seeking to be married, turn with careless facility from the unattainable to the attainable, and keep their feelings and fancy tolerably loose till they find a woman who consents to be their wife. But no one would ever be to Mr. Preston what Cynthia had been, and was; and yet he could have stabbed her in certain of his moods.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Information from the French Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Blurbers
Original language
Canonical DDC/MDS
Canonical LCC

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English

None

Wives and Daughters, Elizabeth Gaskell's last novel, is regarded by many as her masterpiece. Molly Gibson is the daughter of the doctor in the small provincial town of Hollingford. Her widowed father marries a second time to give Molly the woman's presence he feels she lacks, but until thearrival of Cynthia, her dazzling step-sister, Molly finds her situation hard to accept. Intertwined with the story of the Gibsons is that of Squire Hamley and his two sons; as Molly grows up and falls in love she learns to judge people for what they are, not what they seem. Through Molly'sobservations the hierarchies, social values, and social changes of early nineteenth-century English life are made vivid in a novel that is timeless in its representation of human relationships.This edition, the first to be based in the original Cornhill Magazine serialization of 1864-6, draws on a full collation of the manuscript to present the most accurate text so far available.

No library descriptions found.

Book description
Haiku summary

Popular covers

Quick Links

Rating

Average: (4.14)
0.5 2
1 4
1.5 1
2 17
2.5 4
3 83
3.5 23
4 298
4.5 39
5 233

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

Penguin Australia

3 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 014043478X, 0141039396, 014138946X

Tantor Media

An edition of this book was published by Tantor Media.

» Publisher information page

 

About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 173,688,670 books! | Top bar: Always visible