Tobias Smollett: The Expedition of Humphry Clinker

(1614 words)

Tobias Smollett's fifth and final novel signals by its title, The Expedition of Humphry Clinker, a self-conscious departure from the fictional Lives, Histories, and Adventures so popular with contemporaries and, indeed, with Smollett himself. A novelist who self-consciously experimented with fictional form throughout his life, Smollett turns for the first time to epistolary fiction, albeit handled in a manner unique in the eighteenth century. Humphry Clinker relates the near-circular tour of Great Britain undertaken by the ailing Welsh landowner, Matthew Bramble for the sake of his health. He is accompanied on his journey by his unmarried sister, Tabitha Bramble; his nephew, Jery Melford, fresh from Cambridge University; …

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Citation:
Ross, Ian Campbell. "The Expedition of Humphry Clinker". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 28 September 2004
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=10091, accessed 19 December 2014.]