The vicar of Wakefield
Free

The vicar of Wakefield

By Oliver Goldsmith
Free
Book Description

Oliver Goldsmith's hugely successful novel of 1766 remained for generations one of the most highly regarded and beloved works of eighteenth-century fiction. It depicts the fall and rise of the Primrose family, presided over by the benevolent vicar, the narrator of a fairy-tale plot of impersonation and deception, the abduction of a beautiful heroine and the machinations of an aristocratic villain. By turns comic and sentimental, the novel's popularity owes much to its recognizable depiction of domestic life and loving family relationships. New to this edition is an introduction by Robert L. Mack that examines the reasons for the novels enduring popularity, as well as the critical debates over whether it is a straightforward novel of sentiment or a satire on the social and economic inequalities of the period and the very literary conventions and morality it seems to embody. This edition also includes a new, up-to-date bibliography and expanded notes, and contains reprints of Arthur Friedman's authoritative Oxford English Novels text of the corrected first edition of 1766.

Table of Contents
  • THE VICAR OF WAKEFIELD
  • A TALE
    • Supposed to be written by Himself
      • Sperate miseri, cavete faelices
  • ADVERTISEMENT
  • CHAPTER 1
  • CHAPTER 2
  • CHAPTER 3
  • CHAPTER 4
  • CHAPTER 5
  • CHAPTER 6
    • The happiness of a country fire-side
  • CHAPTER 7
  • CHAPTER 8
  • CHAPTER 9
  • CHAPTER 10
  • CHAPTER 11
    • The family still resolve to hold up their heads
  • CHAPTER 12
  • CHAPTER 13
  • CHAPTER 14
  • CHAPTER 15
  • CHAPTER 16
    • The family use art, which is opposed with, still greater
  • CHAPTER 17
  • CHAPTER 18
    • The pursuit of a father to reclaim a lost child to virtue
  • CHAPTER 19
  • CHAPTER 20
  • CHAPTER 21
  • CHAPTER 22
    • Offences are easily pardoned where there is love at bottom
  • CHAPTER 23
    • None but the guilty can be long and completely miserable
  • CHAPTER 24
    • Fresh calamities
  • CHAPTER 25
  • CHAPTER 26
  • CHAPTER 27
    • The same subject continued
  • CHAPTER 28
  • CHAPTER 29
  • CHAPTER 30
  • CHAPTER 31
    • Former benevolence now repaid with unexpected interest
  • CHAPTER 32.
    • The Conclusion
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