Mary Augusta Ward

Life
1851-1920 [Mrs Thomas Humphry; née Mary Augusta Arnold]; b. Hobart, Tasmania, oldest of 8 children of Thomas Arnold and niece of Mathew Arnold; her father converted to Catholicism and taught at Catholic University, Dublin after brief emigration to Tasmania, and later reconverted and taught at Oxford; raised chiefly in English Lake District; studied independently at Bodleian Library; leading authority on early Spanish literature and history; issued numerous novels incl. Robert Elsmere (1888), a story of religious doubt in Victorian society, high and low, and Marcella (1894), a novel of social philanthropy; Sir George Tressady (1898), a sequel. IF SUTH

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Works
The Story of Bessie Costrell
(London: Smith, Elder 1895), 140pp; Marcella (London: Smith, Elder; Leipzig: Bernard Tauchnitz 1894); Sir George Tressady (London: Smith, Elder 1896); Daphne, or Marriage a la Mode (London: Cassell 1909), 315pp.;.

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Commentary
Elaine Showalter, A Literature of their Own (1984), bio-note: Mary Augusta, Mrs Humphry Ward, 1851-1920; b. Hobart, Tasmania, oldest of 8 children of Thomas Arnold; anti-suffrage; best known for Robert Elsmere (1888).

John Sutherland, Companion to Victorian Fiction (London: Longmans 1988): Marcella (1894), a tale of social philanthropy in which Marcella Boyce, art student and Venturist [Fabian], dg. of the heir of Mellor Park, becomes engaged to conservative son of Lord Maxwell, Aldous Raeburn, and is driven apart from him when a starving tenant poacher is hanged for killing the gamekeeper; she subsequently does social work in East End, attaches to a strike-supporting newspaper magnate, but reunites with Aldous when the other sells out to the factory owners; Sir George Tressady (1898) is a sequel.

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References
Eric Stevens Cat. No. 168 (1992) lists not to be confused with Mrs Wilfrid Ward, author of One Poor Scruple (Tabb House 1895; rep. 1899 ed.), intro. Bernard Bergonzi, xiii, 385pp. [novel of society and Catholic landed gentry in 19th c. [6.]

Daphne, or Marriage a la Mode (London: Cassell 1909), 315pp.; The Story of Bessie Costrell (London: Smith, Elder 1895), 140pp. [both held by Victorian Women Writers Project (Indiana Univ.) website.

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