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Encyclopedia > Catherine (book)

Catherine: A Story was the first full-length work of fiction produced by William Makepeace Thackeray. It first appeared in serialized installments in Fraser's Magazine between May of 1839 and February 1840. Thackeray's original intention in writing it was to criticize the Newgate school of crime fiction, exemplified by Bulwer-Lytton and Harrison Ainsworth, whose works Thackeray felt glorified criminals. Thackeray even criticized Dickens for this failing for his portrayal of the good-hearted streetwalker Nancy and the charming pickpocket, the Artful Dodger, in Oliver Twist. The appearance of the first installments of Ainsworth's novel Jack Sheppard at the beginning of 1839 seems to have been what spurred Thackeray into action. William Makepeace Thackeray (July 18, 1811 – December 24, 1863) was a British novelist of the 19th century. ... Frasers Magazine for Town and Country was a general and literary journal. ... The Newgate novels (or Old Bailey novels) were novels published in England from the late 1820s until the 1840s that were thought to glamorise the lives of the criminals they portrayed. ... Bulwer-Lytton may refer to, Edward Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton (1803–1873), novelist and politician. ... Harrison William Ainsworth (1805 - 1882) was an English historical novelist. ... Charles Dickens Charles John Huffam Dickens (February 7, 1812 – June 9, 1870), pen-name “Boz”, was an English novelist of the Victorian era. ... Nancy (IPA pronounciation ; archaic German: ; Luxembourgish: Nanzeg) is a city and commune in the Lorraine région of northeastern France. ... The Artful Dodger is a character in the novel, Oliver Twist, by Charles Dickens. ... Oliver Twist (1838) is Charles Dickens second novel. ... Jack Sheppard in Newgate Prison Jack Sheppard (December 1702 – 16 November 1724) was a notorious English robber, burglar and thief of early 18th century London. ...


Jack Sheppard portrayed a real life prison breaker and thief from the eighteenth century in flattering terms. In contrast, Thackeray sought out a real life criminal whom he could portray in as unflattering terms as possible. He settled on Catherine Hayes, another eighteenth-century criminal, who was burned at the stake for murdering her husband in 1726. However, as he told his mother, Thackeray developed a "sneaking kindness" for his heroine, and the novel that was supposed to present criminals as totally vile, without any redeeming characteristics, instead made Catherine and her roguish companions seem rather appealing. Thackeray felt the result was a failure, and perhaps as a result did not republish it in his lifetime. It has thus suffered from neglect, despite its good qualities, such as its rollicking sense of fun, its satirical touches, and a heroine who in some ways anticipates the much more famous Becky Sharp of Vanity Fair. Burning of two sodomites at the stake (execution of individuals by fire. ... Becky Sharp is the main character in the novel Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray, first published in 1847. ... Title-page to Vanity Fair, drawn by Thackeray, who furnished the illustrations for many of his earlier editions Vanity Fair: A Novel without a Hero is a novel by William Makepeace Thackeray that satirizes society in early 19th-century England. ...


 
 

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