-11 the works of george meredith, de luxe edition, 39 volumes, constable, library edition, 18 volumes, constable, boxhill edition, 17 volumes, scribner, memorial edition, 27 volumes, constable, scribner.
Much critical attention has been paid to his attempt to link comedy with the status of women, and to promote comedy as a tool for womens advancement.
Priestley, that meredith's difficult style, requiring as it does the full and undivided attention of the reader, paved the way for the public acceptance of much subsequent serious fiction, helping to shape "the modern attitude towards fiction and the modern novel itself.
As he entered his early twenties, meredith began writing poetry, influenced in particular by john keats and lord tennyson.
" most critics agree that during the period from 1860 to 1875, meredith was very responsive to the desires of the book-buying public.
Often it is unclear what actually happens in the novels, and the reader is forced to extract the truth from the gossip, half-truths, and misdirection arising from the different characters' perceptions; in many cases meredith gave several versions of the same event through the eyes of several characters.
As an advisor to publishers, meredith is credited with helping thomas hardy start his literary career, and was an early associate of j.
As a part-time reader for chapman and hall publishers, meredith was able to observe literary trends and to employ them in his early novels.
Meredith spoke from experience; his first big novel, the ordeal of richard feverel, was judged so shocking that mudie's circulating library had cancelled an order of 300 copies.
Meredith remained secretive about his origins all his life, and much is unknown about his childhood because of his unwillingness to disclose details of this period.
.^ meredith's place in the circles of rosetti, swinburne, morison, sir alexander duff-gordon and sir william hardman is described in s.
Merediths ideal comedy is intellectual; it is the humour of the mind, and therefore requires a society wherein ideas are current and the perceptions quick.
However, the essay is more closely linked, both stylistically and thematically, to merediths fiction and poetry.
Meredith was a major victorian novelist whose career developed in conjunction with an era of great change in english literature during the second half of the nineteenth century.
Meredith lived alone or with male friends for years, traveling extensively in switzerland, france, and italy.
As the most extensive discussion of the comic genre produced in the 19th century, the essay remains frequently cited in studies of british comedy and in discussions of the role of women in comedy.
, mary sturge, the writings and life of george meredith: a centenary study, harvard university press, 1926.
 before his death, meredith was honoured from many quarters: he succeeded lord tennyson as president of the society of authors; in 1905 he was appointed to the order of merit by king edward vii.
During the first years of their marriage nicolls suffered several miscarriages and stillbirths, while meredith developed nervous and digestive disorders that led him to demand a highly specialized diet.
The favorable reception of shagpat inspired meredith to write a serious novel, the ordeal of richard feverel: a history of father and son.
At the time of his death meredith was considered one of england's premier men of letters.
Within this wide range of journalistic prose, the essay stands out as merediths most significant periodical contribution and his best-known nonfiction prose work.
Meredith (18281909) first presented what was to be known as the essay on comedy as a lecture to the london institution on 1 february 1877.
, janet horowitz, courtship and the english novel: feminist readings in the fiction of george meredith, garland publishing (new york city), 1987.
Favorite heroines, molires climne and congreves millamant, are praised for their wit, intelligence, and verbal agility, traits that also characterize merediths own heroines, most notably diana warwick of diana of the crossways (1885).
It is now commonly accepted by critics that meredith possessed what judith wilt has called a "sensitive and aggressive awareness of the presence, at the heart of his creative art, of the reader.
Meredith served as a war correspondent for the morning post during the conflict between italy and austria in 1866, and, despite his liberal views, he also wrote for the conservative ipswich journal from 1858 to 1868.
His supporters, however, praise the poetic quality of meredith's prose, maintaining that each line of meredith's work is written in the allusive, rich language usually reserved for poetry.
Through the many perspectives it offers, comedy will appeal not only to students of literature and literary criticism, but to those studying philosophy and history as well.
In particular, meredith explored new meters and stanzaic forms and experimented dramatically with syntax and grammar.
His first work of fiction, the shaving of shagpat: an arabian entertainment, is a lighthearted fantasy that contains a number of themes that recur throughout meredith's career, including ridicule of social conventions and disdain for social climbers, and features as a central character a young man whose growth to maturity is aided by a woman.
Critics contend that in meredith's experiments with the novel form and with complex characterizations can be seen the germ of the modern psychological novel.
However, as has been true throughout the history of commentary on meredith, there remains a dedicated group of admirers who contend, with j.
Bergson's essay looks at comedy within a wider field of vision, focusing on laughter and on what makes us laugh.
Meredith felt the book was too bitter a satire on the rich and counselled hardy to put it aside and write another 'with a purely artistic purpose' and more of a plot.
Some critics contend that meredith became so enamored of his mannered style that style itself became the end of his work and not the means to tell a story.
It has been theorized that readers were attracted by the belief that in this novel meredith was revealing some inside information about this widely discussed affair; in fact, so many readers assumed that the novel reflected the facts of the scandal that later editions contained disclaimers disallowing any connection between meredith's creation and the affair.
A tempestuous relationship with nicolls culminated in their marriage in 1849, but the marriage was neither a happy nor a lasting one, in part due to meredith's precarious financial situation.
Meredith contended that great comedy rectifies the excesses of human behavior by permitting audiences to laugh at their own foibles, depicting, according to joseph warren beach, "the discrepancy between the real and the supposed motive" for human actions.
Before his death, meredith was honored from many quarters: he succeeded lord tennyson as president of the society of authors; in 1905 he was appointed to the order of merit by king edward vii.
His friends in the literary world included, at different times, william and dante gabriel rossetti, algernon charles swinburne, cotter morison, leslie stephen, robert louis stevenson, george gissing and j.
Its first separate publication took place in 1897, in a book titled an essay on comedy, and the uses of the comic spirit.
In particular, meredith is noted as one of the earliest english psychological novelists and as an important experimenter with narrative told from a variety of shifting, unreliable perspectives, reflecting a modern perception of the uncertain nature of both personal motivation and of social or historical events.
Wright has written that "without being autobiography, meredith's creative work manifests the qualities revealed in his own life," and this is most noticeable in the novels written before 1876.
"laughter makes us human" is the theme of these two classic works, one by the english novelist george meredith, the other by the celebrated french philosopher henri bergson.
During the 1850s meredith began to receive an income from magazine writing and was thus encouraged to attempt a longer prose work.
(cecil palmer, london 1923), which includes an early photograph of george meredith with his son arthur meredith, facing p.
Critics have been united in comparing meredith with thomas hardy as a "poet-novelist" who considered poetry his true literary vocation but turned to writing novels for financial reasons.
With the egoist, meredith finally achieved popular success and his popularity grew with subsequent novels.
Watson during the discussion of the case, "and now let us talk about george meredith, if you please, and we shall leave all minor matters until to-morrow.
Many of the ideas about comedy that he develops in the essay are put into practice in his short fiction, also published in the new quarterly magazine (the house on the beach, 1877; the case of general ople and lady camper, 1877; the tale of chloe, 1879), and in his most famous novel, the egoist (1879).
His father inherited a seemingly prosperous portsmouth naval outfitters and tailor shop from meredith's grandfather but soon discovered that one reason for the shop's.
When meredith was five his mother died, leaving her money in a trust for her son's education.
Several critics have theorized that meredith tried in each new novel to correct the faults that had been criticized in the last, and to incorporate elements that would appeal to victorian readers.
Once he despaired of reaching a large audience, meredith began to write primarily to please himself and the small circle of admirers who had defended and praised his works from the first.
Essay on comedy and the uses of the comic spirit (first published in new quarterly, 1877), constable, 1897, scribner, 1897.