Barren Honour. A Tale. By the Author of ‘Guy Livingstone.’ In two Volumes ...

London: Parker, Son, and Bourn ... 1862.

2 vols., 8vo., contemporary half green calf, spines gilt, morocco labels, occasional soiling but a very good copy.


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First edition. Lawrence has been grouped with Kingsley and Hughes in the ‘muscular’ school of Victorian fiction with its sturdy heroes and Christian Socialism. Barren Honour is ‘a study of magnificently chivalrous self-destruction’ on the part of its hero Sir Alan Wyverne, ‘a thoroughbred’ although ‘a very imperfect Christian’. Honour, for Wyverne, ‘usurp[s] the place where Religion ought to have reigned paramount’. He dies in a luridly described shipwreck, holding the picture of the woman he loves (Sutherland). Wolff 3968.

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