|03-04-2008, 11:58 AM||#1|
Join Date: May 2007
Location: South Wales, UK
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Radcliffe, Ann: The Mysteries of Udolpho, v.1, 4 March 2008.
Ann Radcliffe: The Mysteries of Udolpho
A Romance Interspersed with Some Pieces of Poetry
A gothic novel.
It is long (c291,000 words).
This is one of the novels that Jane Austen satirizes in ‘Northanger Abbey’. Whilst a bit slow to start with, the story becomes quite gripping, and there are some beautiful descriptive passages.
The Mysteries of Udolpho is a quintessential Gothic romance, replete with incidents of physical and psychological terror; remote, crumbling castles; seemingly supernatural events; a brooding, scheming villain; and a persecuted heroine. To this mix Radcliffe adds extensive descriptions of exotic landscapes in the Pyrenees and Apennines. Set in 1584 in southern France and northern Italy, the novel focuses on the plight of Emily St. Aubert, a young French woman who is orphaned after the death of her father. Emily suffers imprisonment in the castle Udolpho at the hands of Signor Montoni, an Italian brigand who has married her aunt and guardian Madame Cheron. Emily's romance with Valancourt, the younger brother of Count Duvarney, is frustrated by Montoni and others. Emily also endeavors to discover an explanation for the mysterious relationship between her father and the Marchioness de Villeroi, a mystery which appears to have connections to the castle Udolpho.
I have restored accents and italics, and have corrected obvious typos. However, I have left the 18th-century spelling as it stands.
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