Frances Trollope, The Widow Barnaby

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Probably most readers would agree that of all of Frances Trollope's novels,

The Widow Barnaby

(1838) has been the most beloved, primarily due to the hilarious creation of the “feather and furbelow” and “flighty and flirting” widow, Martha Barnaby (2.1 and 2.6).

Chambers's Encyclopedia

pronounced this novel and its sequels,

The Widow Married

(1840) and

The Barnabys in America

(1843), as the most successful of Trollope's works (1901, 10.301).

The story begins at the usual point of familial conflict: somebody dies – namely Old Revd Compton – which elicits squabble amongst the relatives over the inheritance. The will directed that 300 acres be equally divided between the son and daughter. Well and good, especially for daughter Elizabeth who will never marry; but never enough for

1251 words

Citation: Ayres, Brenda. "The Widow Barnaby". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 28 June 2010 [https://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=30662, accessed 30 May 2024.]

30662 The Widow Barnaby 3 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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