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aliceanne
01-11-2012, 02:33 PM
The publisher, printers, libraries. and booksellers probably made more money than Charlotte. This was in the days before royalties - authors sold the copyright of their works to a publisher for a flat fee. The best they could hope for was a runaway bestseller that would enable them to charge a higher fee for any books that followed.

Charles Dickens supported a wife, a sister-in-law, 10 children, a mistress and her child in two separate households on his income. I think Bronte's publisher had a very paternalistic relationship with her. If she wanted to go somewhere and do something, they took care of all the arrangements, but I suspect they kept the money.

Nan
01-11-2012, 02:47 PM
The Winter Queen by Boris Akunin (http://www.amazon.com/Winter-Queen-Novel-Fandorin-Mystery/dp/0812968778/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1326254458&sr=1-1) 5/5. I LOVED this book, mainly due to the prose. I usually dislike a lot of current literary books because the authors often seem to be trying to hard to write 'literary' and genre books aren't really known for their prose so it was nice to find nice, well written prose in a genre book that read like it came naturally to the author. Also when I read books with humor, I usually don't get it but this book actually made me chuckle several times.


Someone recommended Akunin's books to me some time ago and I have read several. Glad to see I am not the only one to enjoy his work and the english movie version of this book promises to be out sometime this year starring Anton Yelchin.

I've read this and several other Akunin books, also, and enjoyed all of them. I'll have to keep an eye out for the movie. Thanks for the heads-up.

Wyliefan
01-11-2012, 03:37 PM
Charles Dickens supported a wife, a sister-in-law, 10 children, a mistress and her child in two separate households on his income.

The mistress's child, if it ever even existed -- which is in dispute -- is said to have died shortly after birth. So it wouldn't have required a lot of support. But it's true that Dickens had to work like a madman to support all his other dependents -- not just those named, but also the other relatives who sponged off him. Fortunately he had the energy for it, though it did eventually drive him to an early grave.


I read somewhere that the average life expectancy in Haworth was 28, so the Brontes actually beat the odds somewhat. It tells you how self-absorbed the father was - I would have gotten the family out after the oldest 2 and the mother died in quick succession. The maternal grandparents were well-to-do merchants in Cornwall they could have gotten them out.

The oldest two died at boarding school, or of something they caught at school, so you can't really blame the man for not moving the other children out of the house. One might blame him for sending more of his children to boarding school after that, but then, I believe that's pretty much what widowed fathers did in those days. There just weren't a lot of options.

aliceanne
01-11-2012, 05:13 PM
The mistress's child, if it ever even existed -- which is in dispute -- is said to have died shortly after birth. So it wouldn't have required a lot of support. But it's true that Dickens had to work like a madman to support all his other dependents -- not just those named, but also the other relatives who sponged off him. Fortunately he had the energy for it, though it did eventually drive him to an early grave.



The oldest two died at boarding school, or of something they caught at school, so you can't really blame the man for not moving the other children out of the house. One might blame him for sending more of his children to boarding school after that, but then, I believe that's pretty much what widowed fathers did in those days. There just weren't a lot of options.

The school claimed that the girls were already ill and malnourished when they came . It was a big public debate after JE was published. Apparently other students didn't die. The girls did attend the first year the school was open, and they did have some problems with the stone building being damp, but it was nowhere near the problems of Lowood. Charlotte Bronte was mortified that the public assumed the two were the same.

The problem wasn't the Brontes' house. The town cemetary was overcroweded and above the village water supply. The entire village suffered from low-grade typhoid and TB at certain times of the year. Patrick Bronte made it one of his life-long crusades to get this situation remedied. He campaigned to stop burials in that cemetary and to get the government to install a well in a better location.

PrincessLeppard
01-11-2012, 05:51 PM
Since today is a "fitness" day at my school, and it's freezing cold outside, we are just wandering the hallways. Whee.

So I hit the library and checked out Burger Wuss by M.T. Anderson. I'm halfway through and it's pretty funny. Very different from the other book I've read of his, Feed.

Nomad
01-11-2012, 05:53 PM
Charles Dickens supported a wife, a sister-in-law, 10 children, a mistress and her child in two separate households on his income. I think Bronte's publisher had a very paternalistic relationship with her. If she wanted to go somewhere and do something, they took care of all the arrangements, but I suspect they kept the money.

Dickens was also paid more per book and had other sources of income - his magazine, the lecture circuit, adapting worksd for the stage, etc.

His great-granddaughter Monica Dickens was a very good writer, btw. Persephone has recently reissued some of her books.

Nomad
01-11-2012, 05:57 PM
...The problem wasn't the Brontes' house. The town cemetary was overcroweded and above the village water supply. The entire village suffered from low-grade typhoid and TB at certain times of the year. Patrick Bronte made it one of his life-long crusades to get this situation remedied. He campaigned to stop burials in that cemetary and to get the government to install a well in a better location.

I read somewhere (perhaps the Margot Peters bio of CB) that seepage from the coffins contaminated the well.

As for the parsonage, I cannot imagine eight people living in that tiny place, even if six of them were children.

IceAlisa
01-11-2012, 06:18 PM
I read somewhere (perhaps the Margot Peters bio of CB) that seepage from the coffins contaminated the well.
I am officially grossed out. :scream: I've always thought cremation was the way to go.

PrincessLeppard
01-11-2012, 08:01 PM
Since today is a "fitness" day at my school, and it's freezing cold outside, we are just wandering the hallways. Whee.

So I hit the library and checked out Burger Wuss by M.T. Anderson. I'm halfway through and it's pretty funny. Very different from the other book I've read of his, Feed.

Quoting myself because I finished it. It's not a long book.

Decent story, ending doesn't resolve as one would expect (which somewhat disappointed me--I wanted the thieving bully to be held accountable), but an okay read.

Wyliefan
01-11-2012, 08:54 PM
Dickens was also paid more per book and had other sources of income - his magazine, the lecture circuit, adapting worksd for the stage, etc.

His great-granddaughter Monica Dickens was a very good writer, btw. Persephone has recently reissued some of her books.

She was indeed. I've read two or three of her novels and one of her nonfiction books (One Pair of Hands) and really enjoyed them.

Nomad
01-11-2012, 09:03 PM
I am officially grossed out. :scream: I've always thought cremation was the way to go.

Sorry. I guess that was rather revolting.

I'm currently reading Jézabel by Irčne Némirovsky, although all the Brontë chat has me thinking about digging out Fraser's tome on the Brontë family and reading that again instead.

orientalplane
01-11-2012, 10:28 PM
As for the parsonage, I cannot imagine eight people living in that tiny place, even if six of them were children.

It's not a tiny place. It's quite a big house (though not for eight, but certainly for five). I've been there on numerous occasions.

Fergus
01-11-2012, 11:11 PM
^ Luvin' all the Chuck Dickens dish upthread. :watch:

The incredible Claire Tomalin writes the best bios of British authors, methinks I'm going to have to grab her rather recent Charles Dickens off the shelf. :biggrinbo

Nomad
01-12-2012, 05:12 AM
It's not a tiny place. It's quite a big house (though not for eight, but certainly for five). I've been there on numerous occasions.

Well, I was only there once, many years ago. i suppose it seemed small because not all the rooms were open to the public and those that were seemed small and almost claustrophobic.

pair mom
01-12-2012, 05:58 AM
The library has unexpectedly delivered: I have requested Catherine The Great by Robert Massie and it's here! Need to finish up Shirley. Off to read a few chapters before bed.

It may look like a beast because of it's size..but it reads fast! I screamed through it in a week after New Years! And as always, Massie makes history interesting and contemporary! Enjoy! :)