William Makepeace Thackeray: Vanity Fair

(2582 words)
  • Lindsay Sullivan (University of Wales, Cardiff)

Thackeray began work on Vanity Fair in 1845, and Bradbury and Evans made an offer for it in 1846. The novel eventually began serialisation in Punch in January 1847, running until July 1848. A one-volume edition was published in 1848 and a revised edition appeared in 1853. The present title of the novel alludes both to John Bunyan (1628-88)’s The Pilgrim’s Progress (1678) and to the book of Ecclesiastes (see 1v2, 1v14, and 12v8). The Pilgrim’s Progress describes Vanity Fair: “Therefore at this Fair are all such merchandise sold, as houses, lands, trades, places, honours, preferments, titles, countries, kingdoms, lusts, pleasures, and delights of all sorts, as whores, bawds, wives, husbands, children, …

Please log in to consult the article in its entirety. If you are a member (student of staff) of a subscribing institution (see List), you should be able to access the LE on campus directly (without the need to log in), and off-campus either via the institutional log in we offer, or via your institution's remote access facilities, or by creating a personal user account with your institutional email address. If you are not a member of a subscribing institution, you will need to purchase a personal subscription. For more information on how to subscribe as an individual user, please see under Individual Subcriptions.

Sullivan, Lindsay. "Vanity Fair". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 16 July 2004
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=8590, accessed 26 September 2016.]