[The following paragraph comes from Ryals's introduction to Robert Elsemere (see bibliography) — George P. Landow

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rom the beginning of her life at Oxford, she had met and associated with the leading figures in the intellectual establishment of the day. Partly, of course, this was because of her Arnold connections—Matthew Arnold had been professor of poetry at Oxford from 1857 to 1867, her aunt Jane was the wife of W. E. Forster, the Minister of Education, and her sister Julia married Leonard Huxley—but Mary Ward had personal charm to commend her as well as a probing intelligence. The Pattisons introduced her to George Eliot and George Henry Lewes; she knew Swinburne and Walter Pater; and when the great French scholar and critic Hippolyte Taine came to lecture at Oxford, she was at the dinner party Jowett gave in his honor. After her marriage there were even more opportunities to enlarge her acquaintance with the great names of modern thought. When the Wards vacationed abroad, they were provided with letters of introduction to famous men on the Continent. [xiv-xv]

Sources

Ward, Mrs. Humphry. Robert Elsemere. Ed. Clyde de L. Ryals. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1967.


Victorian Web Overview Authors Mrs Humphry Ward

Last modified 16 July 2014