Mrs Humphry Ward was one of the most popular serious novelists writing in England in the late 1880s and 1890s and continued to produce works of fiction until her death in 1920. She became a close friend of Henry James and a significant public figure in the English literary world. Her most famous novel, Robert Elsmere (1888), is concerned with religious doubt, dramatising the intellectual and textual arguments and discoveries of Biblical Criticism and powerfully depicting a marriage under stress. As well as advancing the arguments of theological modernism, ahead of its time, her central concern is to show the desolating loneliness of pursuing with integrity a path which conflicts with prevailing orthodoxies, whether theological o…
Boughton, Gillian. "Mrs Humphry Ward". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 22 October 2004; last revised 19 October 2019.
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